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Yamaha TRBX 305 upgrades.

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Funkabilly, Aug 8, 2018.


  1. Funkabilly

    Funkabilly

    Aug 11, 2015
    Richmond Ky
    I bought myself a TRBX 305 last week for my birthday. The band I am in, pretty much calls for a 5er, and I only had 1. I like to have 2 basses on stage with me, just in case something goes wrong. My main bass is a Warwick Thumb, so you kinda know the sound I am going for. This Yamaha sounds ok, but I'd like to get some more punch out of it, especially on the B string. Any suggestions on some pups/preamp? I really like Barts, has anyone put some Barts in one of these basses? If so, which ones?
    Thanks!
     
  2. LowEndOperative

    LowEndOperative Supporting Member

    Oct 8, 2013
    Michigan
    If I wanted punch out of a TRBX305 I previously owned, I soloed the neck pickup and had the 5-way Performance EQ switch set to slap with a mid-scoop on the amp (Ampeg PF800). Got a pretty good P-bass sound out of it, for whatever “punch” quality exists in a P-bass. So far as that is transferable to the B string, I don’t really know as I used that somewhat sparingly and didn’t have that bass for that long. Not knowing what to recommend regarding pickups, I’d say the next best thing is reduced mids on the amp.
     
  3. SpazzTheBassist

    SpazzTheBassist

    Jun 20, 2006
    As we are all different, "punch" for me comes from a combination of technique, the bass' setup, string newness (key), and how you set your amp ( Im one of those "EQ as flat as possible and use overall volume" guys), regardless of what bass Im using...With this in mind, Im only responding because I owned a TRBX 305 in the past and it was extremely punchy (very G&L like)...YMMV, of course
     
  4. Funkabilly

    Funkabilly

    Aug 11, 2015
    Richmond Ky
    I appreciate the comments, but I am not asking if I should or shouldn't upgrade, and I know how to set my eq. I'm wanting to know if anyone has upgraded one of these, and if so, what did they upgrade with. I mentioned my Warwick Thumb in reference to "punch". To me, the Thumb is very punchy, growly.. a p bass is not. Please, I want pickup recommendations, that's all.
     
  5. Barticus

    Barticus Supporting Member

    Sep 16, 2017
    NEOhio
    My main player is a Thumb BO 5 custom shop and had one of the Yammy's for about a week and returned it, because it wasn't for me.

    I put my ToneHammer pedal in front of it and that sounded pretty good. So you may want to try some pre amp pedal options before upgrading, of course YMMV :)
     
  6. SpazzTheBassist

    SpazzTheBassist

    Jun 20, 2006
    sorry, brother, no disrespect intended...but you have to understand that everybody from beginners to pros comes here to TB and its hard to know who you are and where you fall within the spectrum by reading a paragraph or two of a problem. Over the years, some folks "punch" problems have been solved by simple things such as string changes :D ....So, I find the best thing to do is for someone just to explain themselves fully if they dont know anything about the other person...anyway, best of luck :)
     
    ruju likes this.
  7. Funkabilly

    Funkabilly

    Aug 11, 2015
    Richmond Ky
    No, I didn't mean to sound that way. I just had to be more specific about what I wanted. I didn't take anything as being disrespectful, I just realized that I needed to be more specific. It's all good!
     
    SpazzTheBassist likes this.
  8. Maxdusty

    Maxdusty

    Mar 9, 2012
    Michigan USA
    Curious to see what others may have done to their TRBX305 basses. To me, the TRBX305 is not punchy but thumpy - there's no clarity but delivers a nice "whomp". It has it's uses but the stock pickups and electronics are not just going to give you the kind of definition that a Warwick or something like a Ray would give, I know what you're getting at. I have one myself and was actually playing it earlier, no it's not punchy like my Musicman for sure- I think Barts might help, but I also think changing the preamp may help too, the 2 band EQ is pretty lacking on this- the 5 way switch is kind of a gimmick to me, not really as useful as knobs.
    There's this thread about upgrading the preamp. Yamaha TRBX305 Preamp Replacement
     
    Funkabilly likes this.
  9. MrMoonlight

    MrMoonlight Bottom feeder Supporting Member

    Sep 2, 2008
    Well, your reasonable options are likely a string change and/or preamp replacement. I don't know of any mainstream manufacturer that offers pickups with the same footprint as the stock PUs found in the TRBX305. They're an odd, non-standard size, so without some surgery on the bass to allow the aftermarket pickups to fit into the cavities (which would probably also involve using pickup rings or adding a pickguard to cover unsightly gaps), you're pretty much stuck with the stock pickups.

    Unless, of course, you decide to have custom replacement pickups built to your specs which - for a pair of 5 string humbuckers with a custom size - would probably approach the cost of the entire bass itself.

    I'd go with a string change first. If that doesn't do it, consider replacing the preamp. If you like the feel and playability of the TRBX, consider spending a bit more and go for a TRBX505... a wider range of sounds, can run active or passive and it has a much better 3-band preamp. That might be less expensive overall than modding the 305 to get it up to speed. Just my $0.02.
     
  10. Barticus

    Barticus Supporting Member

    Sep 16, 2017
    NEOhio
    If you really want to swap the pickups, I would explore Nordstrand as they might be able to do a hand made version of one of their pickups to the correct size (e.g.- like a Big Blademan) to fit the existing route hole.
     
  11. Toptube

    Toptube

    Feb 9, 2009
    Nordstrand does not currently have capability to custom make plastic casing for pickups.

    What they do are "raw" pickups which are basically all bobbin material. And they can make those to any reasonable size.
     
    Barticus likes this.
  12. Barticus

    Barticus Supporting Member

    Sep 16, 2017
    NEOhio
    Ah, good point (forgot about the raw) :thumbsup: maybe then off to a 3D printer to create a couple of covers :)
     
  13. Toptube

    Toptube

    Feb 9, 2009
    Yes, if you can provide covers or get some from someone who makes covers, they can custom shape bobbins to go inside of them.
     

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