What it the difference between passive and active bass?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by sevortz, Mar 27, 2010.

  1. sevortz


    Mar 10, 2010
    First, im a noob :bawl: so i ask this question.
    So i have Fender Precision Standard MIM passive and LTD EX-104 which is active. But i like the fender better, i dont know why it fits to me better.
    So anyone knows the difference between active and passive bass?
    And if an amp has a label high and low, and where the passive bass and the active bass goes in? hahaha im a noob, sorry guys
    Thanks :bassist:
  2. snyderz


    Aug 20, 2000
    AZ mountains
    I did a search. Found numerous threads on this topic. Passive, no battery. Active, battery. Active has a powered preamp that allows you to have more EQ controls on your bass. Active input on your amp has a dB damper or a quieter level to compensate for the usually louder active preamp/bass. Passive input on the amp does not. I'm a noob too, so there will be better definitions. Search passive vs active.
  3. Kipaste


    Jun 27, 2006
    Helsinki, Finland
    Active basses usually have a on board preamp with eq. controls. Active pickups also excist, they have electronic, amplifying circuitry incorporated in them.

    Passive basses have passive pickups with passive tone control.

    This thing has been discussed over and over here, so I won't go into details. Just use the search if you wan't to read more, you'll probably get hundreds of topics.

    But I will say this: one is never absolutely better than the other. I usually prefer passive, vintage type of instruments and majority of all recording ever are done with one. But ironically my main player at the moment is an active bass with limited passive options. The quality of the preamp makes a big difference in active basses and I for one am pretty picky about those. Most affordable active basses don't sound very good to me, but of course there should be exceptions. But the great thing on the other hand is that changing the onboard pre is easy and relative affordable making it easy to buy a top notch pre to most basses. If you're interested in after market pre's go to the pickups and electronics forum and do a search for aquilar, audere, bartolini and east preamps / retro series.
  4. 3 threads on the front page...
    Christ, if you had a question on the same subject, you really should have posted it in the thread that first caught your interest.

    Well, since you haven't mentioned it yet, I'll save everyone else the trouble by saying that you should use the search feature to search through the TB archives first. You'll be able to read over hundreds of old replies before your new thread gets even ten.

    And welcome to TB. Enjoy your stay.

    You guys beat me to it. ;)
  5. sevortz


    Mar 10, 2010
    oh okay im sorry, ive searched abt it but i couldnt find it, ill catch up soon
  6. snyderz


    Aug 20, 2000
    AZ mountains
    No need to be sorry here. We're all bass players, and happy to have you. We are just trying to help, and one of those ways is to urge you to use the search function. You can usually learn a LOT, really fast by doing so.
  7. If you just started playing I suggest getting passive pickups. Actives can be kind of annoying I tend to unplug my bass not to drain battery as I have a mild ocd with all of my things. So If my band is talking in the middle of practice I always unplug my bass haha.
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