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zon lw tracking on v-bass

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by mikestack, Mar 5, 2003.

  1. mikestack


    Sep 17, 2002
    Hey guys...

    I know a couple people have expressed interest in knowing how the tracking on my Zon Lightwave was with the V-Bass.

    While there's still some issues that I'm working out (Joe referred me directly to the LW folks for help with this...), I've had significant time to play around with it and can give a bit of a report.

    First, the problems I'm having is a bit odd, and there's been no resolution so far-- turns out the LW can't handle the full voltage for the volume knob. I know the 13-pin connectors are fairly wide spread, and I *CAN* output full volume through my VG-88, so it appears to be a V-Bass problem. The other problem is that the B (and to a lesser extent the E) string are distorting too readily on some patches, particularly the acoustic/upright bass patches. I've tried just about everything to stop this from happening, including setting my sensitivity to 0 for the strings, lowering the low end gain, etc., but nothing seems to help.

    A customer service note-- when I first discovered these issues, I called Joe Zon, who called Lightwave and got back to me in 10 minutes. When the problem became less than immediate for correction, Joe put me directly in touch with the guys at LW, who've also been supremely helpful. While the problems still exist, I'm confident they'll be resolved soon.

    Now onto the good stuff, the tracking-- it's flawless, it may even be too good, because some of my sloppiness is coming out :D (I haven't owned a bass in about 3 years before I bought this one....). Literally, every nuance, from slap/pop style, fret noise (like I said, sloppiness...), scratches, harmonics, you name it, every minute aspect of my playing is coming straight through the V-Bass, whether I drive the LW system or the 13-pin output. Really superb.

    I'm hoping to have sound samples for you guys sometime this week or next, depending on how my schedule permits.... don't know if this will widely expose tracking, but it should be at least revelatory with how the V-Bass sounds with the LW.
  2. frederic b. hodshon

    frederic b. hodshon

    May 10, 2000
    Redmond, WA
    Microsoft Product Designer
    i had the same problem.

    what pickup do you have selected in the VBass? make sure you select MAG.

    also, the LW boys had to adjust my Roland board a bit to prevent distorting.

    all is great now.

    keep us informed!

  3. mikestack


    Sep 17, 2002
    Reassuring at the least, that I'm not alone in the universe.

    Are you referring to the GK or Piezo? I picked GK if that's what you mean, but I've tried both, because of the somewhat odd nature of my solution.

    Also reassuring, to some degree.

    Heard from LW yesterday afternoon, they're getting a V-Bass to play around with and see if they can't figure out what's going on. They're also in touch with Roland software to find out just what's different between the V-Bass and the VG-88 since the problems I'm encountering don't exhibit themselves on the VG-88.

    In addition to the B and E distorting, if I crank the volume all the way, it cuts out on the V-Bass. Neither of these problems manifest themselves on the VG-88. This I was able to verify for myself.

    However, there is a curve ball thrown in-- for whatever reason, when Joe Zon built this, he didn't use the LW MIDI board. I actually have a hybrid solution, LW--> special board --> RMC Poly-Drive I. So who knows, really? :) The good news is that LW was involved in the installation, so they're aware of the difference and Joe deferred to them on MIDI stuff, so I suspect they've got a good grasp of the RMC solution.

    I think (I haven't asked) that Joe went with the RMC because it was a proven solution and they had the whole package, all the stuff for all the controls plus the 13-pin connector in once nice package.

    Mind you, that's speculation, I haven't asked Joe myself. At some point, I think I'm going to have him do a fretless for me, at which time I'll find out about this.

    Interestingly enough, I was considering going with a different manufacturer [edit: for a fretless] before I got my Zon.. now I'm sold on the Zon/LW as a combination., both for analog and V-Bass driven efforts.

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