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Warwick Passive to Active

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by CannibisZombie, Aug 1, 2012.


  1. CannibisZombie

    CannibisZombie

    Jul 16, 2012
    I was given a Warwick Rockbass Corvette Double Buck 5 String as a gift. Its a really nice bass and has some really nice sound but I do wish it was active. If I bring this bass down to guitar center to there guitar tech can they replace the passive pick ups with active ones?


    http://www.americanmusical.com/Item--i-WAR-RBDB5-LIST
    (thats the bass)
     
  2. LouieV2

    LouieV2

    Jan 9, 2011
    Boston, MA
    I assume the reason you want it to be active is because you want to be able to tweak your tone with the knobs, yes? I think what you're looking for is an active on-board EQ. Active pickups without an active EQ won't give you any more flexibility then you have now, they will only make the output of the bass slightly louder.

    I suggest a Bartolini or Aguilar preamp if thats what you're looking for. And the answer is yes, guitar center techs can install those for you: but dont expect it to be cheap.

    Honestly.. I wouldnt change a thing on the bass unless it sounds bad. Active doesn't always mean good... I keep my German Warwick std. 5 string in passive mode all the time.
     
  3. CannibisZombie

    CannibisZombie

    Jul 16, 2012
    I wanted a german warwick but they are way to expensive for me at the moment. I figured it would be cheaper to get one of the lower end models and just get a preamp and change the pickups. What type of pickups should I look at?
     
  4. FileBass

    FileBass

    May 9, 2012
    ur pups r passive n u want active eq then just buy a preamp. dont even need to change the pups. if u change ur pups to active w/o having a preamp, ur bass might not work.
     
  5. As NachosNDip said, you do not need to get new pickups. I would actually recommend against it, the MEC pickups that the Warwick Rockbasses have are very good. In fact, I think they are the same pickups that go into the German models. The ACTIVE Warwick basses, such as the German $$, which I used to own, have passive pickups. What makes the German Warwick Corvette $$ active is the active preamp. You can easily add an active preamp and it will boost your output and give you a more options with your sound. There are tons of options for active preamps that you can install into your Warwick. You can get ones with 2, 3, or 4 bands. More bands on the preamp does not meen it is a better preamp, just different. If you want your Warwick Rockbass to be similar to the German one, add a 2 band preamp.
     
  6. It comes down to finding an active preamp that suits your needs, and knob layout. The Rockbass Corvette $$ that you have contains 4 knobs; 2 volume & 2 tone. You just need to find a pre that can enable what you want. Don't forget that the active German $$s also have the coil tap switches, and the RockBass variants achieve this with pull switches, so you need to understand what is going on there, as well. Your best bet might be to experiment with an active outboard preamp. I know that Aguilar makes one that is a DI stomp, but it is based on the OBP-3Tone Hammer, and many bassist swear by it. The Aggie is certainly, by no means, the only choice, but you may find that experimenting with an outboard pre is a more cost-effective option, and that it will also help you with any other bass guitar that you may have.
     
  7. WarwickOfficial

    WarwickOfficial

    May 15, 2012
    Warwick & Framus Social Media
    newworldman is correct. The Rockbass line saw a major overhaul, which began to be distributed in 2011. They all feature 2-piece bodies, a 3-piece maple neck with ekanga stringers, and the same MEC pickups and hardware as the German-made Warwick basses. They have a just-a-nut III, and easy-access control/truss covers, topped off by the "W" on the headstock! Please let me know if you have any questions - I am more than happy to assist you. Thanks!

     
  8. LouieV2

    LouieV2

    Jan 9, 2011
    Boston, MA
    Newworldman86 beat me to it - the pickups in your Rockbass corvette $$ are the same pickups in the German made model. I believe the only difference between yours the German would be the place of manufacture, woods used, the preamp, and the neck thru on the German. (which arguably doesn't make a huge diff, or any diff at all if you ask some)
     
  9. CannibisZombie

    CannibisZombie

    Jul 16, 2012
    Thank you guys for the help. Much appreciated.
     
  10. WarwickOfficial

    WarwickOfficial

    May 15, 2012
    Warwick & Framus Social Media
    CannibisZombie - glad to help, and please don't hesitate to let me know if you've got any questions or if I can assist you in any way. Thanks again!
     
  11. NelsonNelson

    NelsonNelson

    Sep 25, 2011


    This video I recently found accidentally. It is not me, but shows you how clear Bartolini Preamps are. I actually was searching for something like this since I purchased my used Warwick Corvette standard with a Bartolini NTBT 918, which is a 2 band, and uses a stacked treble/bass pot so it'll fit in the knob positions that are on my bass.

    Original MEC pickups are on mine....and just like that video the sound is amazing but still retains that signature Warwick growl. Mine is 18v and has an adjustable internal gain as well.

    I don't suggest changing your pickups at all as I've read that Rockbasses come with Warwick standard pickups installed in them. My bass sounds better to me than any other on the market that I've tried and it has a ton of tonal variety depending on how you play it. The preamp of course adds to it's character and clarity. The only "negative" is that if you roll the treble up there is slight noise...but I realized half of that was playing too close to my amp as well as turning boost off and lowering my internal gain on the pre.

    Hope this helps you out some.
     

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