New (used) bass with a problem

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New (used) bass with a problem

Postby jglunt » Wed Mar 14, 2018 7:36 pm

I'm brand new to this forum and brand new to G & L basses. After playing Steinberger Synapses for years, I just bought a used Tribute L2500. The previous owner had installed a Seymour Duncan STC-2A preamp in this bass. When I received the bass earlier today, I was stunned when I played it and couldn't get anything but mud out of it. Then a friend of mine told me the L2500 had passive pickups and the STC-2A was designed for active pickups. I won't repeat what I had to say about that here. I truly hadn't planned on buying a project, but I guess I have. First, can anyone tell me definitively if the pickups in the L2500 are passive or active? Second, if they are passive, can anyone advise me a path to follow to correct this problem?

Thank you.

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Re: New (used) bass with a problem

Postby Ken Baker » Thu Mar 15, 2018 6:08 am

jglunt wrote:I'm brand new to this forum and brand new to G & L basses. After playing Steinberger Synapses for years, I just bought a used Tribute L2500. The previous owner had installed a Seymour Duncan STC-2A preamp in this bass. When I received the bass earlier today, I was stunned when I played it and couldn't get anything but mud out of it. Then a friend of mine told me the L2500 had passive pickups and the STC-2A was designed for active pickups. I won't repeat what I had to say about that here. I truly hadn't planned on buying a project, but I guess I have. First, can anyone tell me definitively if the pickups in the L2500 are passive or active? Second, if they are passive, can anyone advise me a path to follow to correct this problem?


Yes, the pickups are definitely passive. In fact the original circuit for the bass allows for passive and active modes, both with bass, treble, and volume controls.

G&L has available a pre-wired preamp assembly. You'll probably also need a jack, possibly a battery clip and maybe knobs. Note that this preamp assembly is for USA instruments, so you may have to enlarge the holes for the pots and purchase USA knobs.

You'll also need a circuit diagram. Click the image for a PDF.

Image

As noted in the drawing, the 10K resistor that is connected to the active/passive switch has been moved to the circuit board. This will become a simple lead from the board to the switch for the v1.3 preamp, which is what you'd get.

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Re: New (used) bass with a problem

Postby jglunt » Thu Mar 15, 2018 7:09 am

Thanks, Ken, for the advice. I wish I knew what the seller did with the original electronics. And I wish I'd known before I bought this bass what I know now. Hindsight is better than foresight for sure.

Jim
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Re: New (used) bass with a problem

Postby TDR1138 » Thu Mar 15, 2018 7:55 am

Ken is pointing you in the direction of returning to stock functionality (albeit with USA electronics). These are great basses with the stock setup, so it's definitely a good option, and I don't want to discourage it at all. But I did just want to point out that there are other options, too.

You have two passive humbuckers and the wrong preamp. Quickest and cheapest way to get up and running would be to just wire it like a Jazz bass - vol/vol/tone. You would also be able to use any preamp on the market that would work with passive pickups, in case you have any particular flavor you want to go for. So your options are pretty wide open.

I'd say that most people don't use their stock preamps in their L-series basses. Yes that's a broad generalization, but just what it seems like reading comments on the web. I do use mine because I play direct into the PA, and I think it really helps there, but never used it when feeding an amp.

I were in your shoes, I'd probably get the correct parts for the vol/treb/bass controls, and wire it passively. Use the hole for the preamp switch as a series/single/parallel for the bridge pickup, use the normal series/parallel hole for series/single/parallel for the neck pickup, and have some fun experimenting. IMO, best functionality-to-cost option. But that's just me. The question is, what would you want to do?
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