What are the Pro & Cons of active pick-ups?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Mud, Aug 19, 2001.

  1. Mud

    Mud Guest

    Aug 19, 2001
    What are the Pro & Cons of active pick-ups?
  2. Bass Guitar

    Bass Guitar Supporting Member

    Aug 13, 2001

    The ability to boost the bass, mid or treble of your instrument's signal whereas passives can only cut, not boost.

    Active pickups with preamp mean you don't get signal loss with long cables as oppose to passive.


    You need to use a battery.

    Some argue that the sound is not as "warm" or that you don't get that "vintage" tone with actives.

    I am sure there are more, but those are the general ones I know of. I am sure this has been discussed before. Do a search in the forums for this topic.
  3. Muttluk

    Muttluk Guest

    Jan 19, 2000
    Oakland, California
    I have a Passive Fender Jazz bass. I am fully able to cut and boost certain frequencys (sp? its 3 am over here) when i go from bass, cable, amp. My eden head has this ability as does other amps. I'm not trying to be a smart booty, but i know, this is basicly what an active bass has, just pointing out that you can do this with a passive bass too.

    Somthing that you said (thread starter) you said active pu's, i'd like to point out there there are active pu's which MUST have a battery, or else you get no signal, then there are active basses, which have passive pu's, but an active pre-amp (ability to cut/boost various freq.)

    Some notes on active basses...
    Some times you get a hotter signal, this could be good, could be bad, just somthing that happens. Also, you always must remove the cord from the bass, because if you have an onboard preamp, your battery ('s) will die due to the circut being on due to the cord.
  4. Phat Ham

    Phat Ham

    Feb 13, 2000
    I think Bass Guitar was referring to being able to boost bass/treble on the bass itself, not at the amp.

    Active stuff is usually more expensive too, and if you get cheap preamps they can be noisy and midrangey.
  5. Bass Guitar

    Bass Guitar Supporting Member

    Aug 13, 2001
    That's correct. Most active basses have preamps onboard the bass (hence the battery) which does the boosting. A bass with passive pickups can have an external preamp which can do the same thing.