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Piezo Pickups


sigudo

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i just came accross a sweet acoustic bass... its some kind of a dean (i never thought they were that good) bass with a piezo pickup. it has a nice preamp built in as well... i absolutly love the tone and responce... the versitility... its an all round great instrument.. do they only sound so good because of the hollow body??? what would it do on maby say a fretless jazz bass(my first love)..who can help me with more info on Piezo Pickups ??? quite possbly utilizing both regular magnetic and Piezo Pickups... i'm just lookin for some advice or thoughts... thanks....
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I have a Dean ABG (exotica Radiant I think - the one with the nice mother of pearl fretboard inlays and a cool inlay around the sound hole.) I got it for about $550 with the case. It sounds very good unplugged and plugged in. One things is that it has a dead note on an open D, 5th fret D, 10th fret D, and 12th fret D. It also had a lot of fret buzz arounf the 4th-7th fret range, but I took it in for a set up and now it only buzzes at the 5th fret on the E string. One more thing, The bridge is hard to adjust (I had to do some more adjusting myself after the set up. I had to cut some plastic strip to put under the bridge/piezo pickup.) Other than that its a very good bass. I did see a Tobias 5-string ABG in Bass Player for a wee bit more than what I got the Dean for, and I wish I had the Tobias.

 

Important:

MAKE SURE YOU TRY THE BASS UNPLUGGED FIRST, THEN PLUGGED IN. Unplugged you get a basic Idea for the sound, and plugged in, you can fine tune it to see if you can get "your sound".

 

Happy Hunting.

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Oh yea, on the magnetic Pickups: I;ve never tried them in an ABG so I wouldn't know. The preamp on the Dean is pretty good (shadow P7 righ? 5 band graphic w/ feedback canceler?)

 

Thats another thing, it feedsback ALOT easier than a regular electric bass.

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yeah.. its a sweet bass... i came accross it in the middle of nowhere in norther maine in a wine shop... the guy wanted $300 for it and after i played it and talked with him for a bit he gave it to me for $100... it has the mother of pearl inlays and built in eq stuff... i love it... it only needs new strings... i love everything about this bass... however.. i also love fretless jazz basses... i'm just wondering on more info in integrateing a piezo pickup system along side my traditional magnetic pickups... has anyone evr done this?? i'm sure they have.. i'm no inovator... did it work out the way your were thinking tone wis... i'm just looking for input...
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I also have a Dean Performer Plus Model ABG, with the Shadow P7 ( or at least it did before I replaced that).

 

For the price the Dean ABGs are nice. I bought this one for my "travel" bass; to write on in hotel rooms, to take to the beach...and to just have "lying around". It has a small body size which imparts an very unique, if diminuative, unplugged sound, and a 32" scale which is quite comfy. It is quite fun to play and has a wonderful acoustic tone with TI Acousticore strings.

 

The Shadow pickup system, however, I found to be totally unaceptable. It offered only the most horrendous tone highlighting all of the sonic maladies folks claim of piezos. Unbalanced, nasally, ill-defined, chirpy and, worst of all, noisy.

I originally replaced it with a Fishman Matrix System, and then a Highlander. Now it sounds great..I have even done solo gigs with it (tho still it is not mactch for my other ABG's or semi-acoustics).

 

Yet, that all being said, I do rather enjoy this little bass and play it daily. It might be of interest to some that these Dean Models come from the same Korean Samick Factory which produces the Epihone El Capitan and El Segundo models, the Washburn AB series, Ibanez, Cort, and several others. Save for some cosmetic changes (bridge, HEadstock design) and sometimes electronics (the stock Epi and Ibanez electronics are Shadow units with new faceplates), the basses are identical...

 

When considering one these, it should be fair to point out that all ABGs are somewhat lacking when played unplugged. And, amping them is almost always in order. In addition to the problems of feedback, which is a given with the design of many big body models, the aspects of amping these basses is quite different than that of solidbody, magnetic PU equipped basses. Input impedences, EQ changes, and such all behave very differently than with "standard" basses. But, a little research into the science of acoustics, and acoustic amplification, can yeild great results. I use piezo powered Godin basses for nearly 90% ofeverything I do now (n iahve begun to get studio calls requesting this "signature sound"), and am able to get a vast array of tones at my disposal..in addition to the "warm" acoustic tones....

 

Max

...it's not the arrow, it's the Indian.
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