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Tutorials on how to change active Soapbar pickups and bass preamp?

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by Sergius Durante, Jan 31, 2020.


  1. Sergius Durante

    Sergius Durante

    May 21, 2019
    Changing pickups is easy (well I only know how to remove and install pbass pickups... simple volume, tone, pickup, and ground the thang)

    But does anyone know how to replace soapbar emghzs and mediocre preamp? (the crappy pickups active basses use).

    I have a schector stiletto studio 5 active that I love but loathe these pickups. The Pre-amp that came with could use a change, but Im pretty amateur in wiring and looking at the numerous wiring makes me nervous, however, I want to do it or Ill never learn (plus it's impossible to mess up unless you start cutting cutting wires for some wild reason)

    For anyone who has changed pickups or done something with similar specs (active bass, soap bar pickups), would anyone mind offering advice or pics of how they did it? As well as how to install the now solderless emgs in place? As well as reccomendations for pickups and pre-amps for good bite like a jbass/pbass
     
  2. ctmullins

    ctmullins fueled by beer and coconut Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 18, 2008
    MS Gulf Coast
    I'm highly opinionated and extremely self-assured
    All reputable manufacturers of pickups and preamps have documentation, including wiring diagrams, for their products. These are usually freely available on their websites.

    I would recommend EMG active pickups, J and P5, for your Schecter.

    Be aware that the solderless wiring used with EMG HZ pickups is not quite compatible with the solderless wiring used with EMG active pickups. Again, the documentation explains everything.
     
  3. Sergius Durante

    Sergius Durante

    May 21, 2019
    Ahh but so long as a solder everything correctly it should be fine? (I usually get pre wired and only soldered one thing that being a switch)

    alright, do you have any good, zangy recommendations for pre-amps, or should I start with the pickups first then see if the preamp needs a go?
     
  4. ctmullins

    ctmullins fueled by beer and coconut Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 18, 2008
    MS Gulf Coast
    I'm highly opinionated and extremely self-assured
    Yep, if you follow the diagram it should be fine.

    There are lots and lots of great choices available for replacement pickups and preamps. First, figure out what exactly you don’t like about your current tone, then do some reading (TalkBass is an absolute treasure trove of reviews) to figure out some possible replacements. The EMGs I mentioned are great, but certainly not the only option.

    If you really don’t want to solder, then EMG’s solderless wiring might appeal to you. They have onboard EQ modules that work with their pickups, and can be installed without having to plug in a soldering iron.

    Can you tell us the rest of your rig - what strings are you using, what effects/amps/cabinets are you using, what technique (fingers/pick/tap/slap/etc)?
     
  5. Sergius Durante

    Sergius Durante

    May 21, 2019
    I use fingers, double thumb, tap, slap

    I have a mesa boogie subway d800 going into a GK 4x10 with a xotic compressor. I don’t use overdrive as OD in bass is poor mans fuzz (which I also don’t like). But I have a drive knob which can slightly OD (which is what Im looking for).
     
    ctmullins likes this.
  6. ctmullins

    ctmullins fueled by beer and coconut Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 18, 2008
    MS Gulf Coast
    I'm highly opinionated and extremely self-assured
    Gotcha, thanks!

    When upgrading, its best to just change one thing at a time, evaluate it for a while, then go from there. That way you’ll know whether the thing you changed made it better or worse.

    So for starters, I’ll recommend the 40P5X in the neck position, and the 40TWX at the bridge, without any additional EQ. The P will bring that P-bass “fat with clarity”, and the TW will give you both single-coil (J) and dual-coil options at the bridge.

    Play that for a while and see how you like it.

    Don’t forget that different strings can make a huge difference in tone.
     
    Sergius Durante likes this.
  7. Sergius Durante

    Sergius Durante

    May 21, 2019
    Oh yeah, for a while I used to cheap out and get the ernie ball nickel 5s (the green pack). Slippery but they loose all clarity and zing in a week or two, so I went back to rotosounds as they are stainless steel without the coating that sucks all the little noises I like.
     
    ctmullins likes this.
  8. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

     
    May 12, 2021

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