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Yamaha BB 615 question

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by mickebas, May 7, 2010.

  1. I just bought a Yamaha BB 615 and I think it's a great bass for the money I payed.
    The bass has a preamp that is not bypass'able and that to me seem to be the only real bad thing about this bass.
    The bass, mid and treble cut/boost knobs on my bass seems to work more like cut/boost switches but with a knob. That is, when you turn them nothing happens the first 75% and then there's a drastic change of boost or cut right at the end. Is this the way it's suppose to function?
    Any BB614/615 owners out there that recognizes this problem... if it's a problem?
  2. Jibudo


    Mar 13, 2010
    Porto, Portugal
    I had the exact same problem with mine and i tried other 615 and it was the same, the stock preamp is really crap.

    I solved the problem replacing the stock preamp with an aguilar obp-3. Now it sounds really really good.
  3. Ok. I might do something similar. Right now I've had the preamp removed and put in reg 250k pots in a vol/vol/tone using it passive and it sounds much much better. But a high quality preamp is another tempting solution and if I keep on liking the bass as much as I do now I think I will make it active again but with the passive/active option.
  4. giacomini


    Dec 14, 2008
    Florianopolis - Brazil
    Endorsing: Copetti Guitars
    not really topic-related, but I'd like to ask how does that B sound in this bass? I'm tempted to buy this one but don't know if this B is tight or floppy...
  5. basmicke


    May 31, 2008
    I'm very impressed with the B string on this bass. I had a MTD 35' and a Sadowsky RV5 prior to the Yamaha and I must say the Yamaha beats both of them as far as having an even sound across the strings. The B is really tight and focused and the Yamaha bass, to me, feels much easier to play on the first frets. I haven't tried any other Yamaha BB 615 so I don't know if I'm just lucky or if they all are this good. The preamp, however, is really cheap and crappy, so I guess you might as well buy the passive model 415 for less money.
  6. I think most of the problem is the cheap ass pots that yamaha uses, the passive ones have the same problem.

    As far as quality on the basses go they are AMAZING I bought a 415 five years ago and they are just great. High quality neck and hardware, B is pretty tight, finish is THIN it really lets the wood resonate. Again the only bad part is the electronics, the stock pots are sh*t. The pickups are good but if you dig a really aggressive PJ tone you might come up a tad short, the P pickup is a standard bobbin just in that weird shell so its easily replaceable, but the J is a invention of yamaha so the only option short of routing for a new bridge pickup is having it rewound for a bit more bite.

    Seriously though there is nothing wrong with these basses at all, I dare say they are my favorite on the market for the money!
  7. Jibudo


    Mar 13, 2010
    Porto, Portugal
    I agree with you, the neck and body are really high quality, the neck is really smooth and stable. The hardware is great too, but i don't like that bridge, someday i will change-it for a schaller.

    Regarding the pickups, i don't think the p pickup is so easy to replace. The covers are glued to the bobbins, i tried to take them out and i failed. The bridge pickup has a strange shape and is really hard to find a replacement, the only one i have found is the bartolini x4 or x5, i don't remember, that have the exact same measurements of the stock pickup, a litte shorter on the ends (where the screws are).
  8. basmicke


    May 31, 2008
    I've replaced both pickups on an earlier Yamaha BB and it was no problem. Of course I had a guitartech do it since the original pu's don't have the same format. As far as the sound of the passive pu's I think it's really good, but I also had the pots replaced and got it configured lika a standard jazz bass. That way I think I get a fuller output from the pu's and the bridge pu's might be a bit thin soloed but I always use it with ca 85% of the P-pich upp still left on. That way it's pretty close to a 70's jazz played in bridge position. The strength of the pu's, IMO, are when they are both up 100%. That's the typical, focused Yamaha 80-s sound a la Abe Laboriel, Neil Stubenhaus. Very good for slap too since it doesn't sound all that hi techy nasal but still is very compressed and tight. Not as boomy as the fender sound.
  9. jasper383


    Dec 5, 2004
    Durham NC
    Replace the pots and eq, and you have a great bass.

    Just about any aftermarket 3 band eq would be a great improvement over the stock. The pickups, imo, don't need changing, and they are funny shapes so it would be hard to do anyway.

    I had a 615 for a few weeks and thought Yamaha really should have put a better eq in there.
  10. Lorenzini


    Dec 31, 2004
    Los Angeles
    Thinking of getting one of these.

    Is it easy to fit a new preamp in the back of the bass?
  11. Jibudo


    Mar 13, 2010
    Porto, Portugal
    Yes, my aguilar obp-3 fit with no problem
  12. peledog


    Jul 9, 2010
    San Diego, CA
    What if you get a BB415 and put an Aguilar OBP-3 in it (assuming the PUPs are passive)

    Would that work?
    Dave Neal likes this.
  13. Jibudo


    Mar 13, 2010
    Porto, Portugal
    It will work, but i think you have to drill holes and cut some wood. The electronics cavity is smaller and you only have three holes (vol, tone and switch).


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