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  1. Sorry about the delay in the update. My Ibanez BTB845V, converted from "solo" E-C to "standard" B-G bass is my primary gigging bass for my 10-piece party band. The 33-inch scale poses no problem for a B string, either a 135 tuned to B or a 130 tuned up to C, which I prefer. I upgraded the pickups to USA Bart CBC's and an EMG preamp, and my sound man is very pleased, indeed. To get more growl, I change from the D'Addario XL170BT's + 130 to Ernie Ball cobalt rounds, which won't wear the stainless steel frets, as the cobalts would on conventional frets. My fretting hand is comfortable now; my tone supports the band; and all is good.
  2. Zombie thread alert, but bears reviving. Ibanez now has a 33-inch scale 6-string bass, the BTB846V, B-C, which has good reviews and good sound clips on YouTube: good tone and intonation, only the slightest bit of flab which may be the bass or the strings or the amp/mike/camera setup. The stock B string is a D'Addario XL130. A person might want to consider a taper 135. I tune the B string up to C, so the 130 will be fine and it will not be an issue for me. The companion 5-string bass is the BTB845V bass, which is actually set up for E-C as a "solo" bass, and is an update from the BTB33 from a few years ago. It has essentially the same nut and neck profile as other Ibby basses, like the SR series, although a little wider at the 24th fret. I have a BTB845V coming that I am going to have my luthier re-set-up as a conventional 5-string B-G to go on stage with my 2011 Ibby SRA305, as I don't solo. The bass has a zero fret, so all it will need is to polish the zero fret and cut a conventional nut. Give me a month to update. Thanks.
  3. The current Fender 9050CL 45-60-80-105 light green silk flats are probably my favorite set of flats ever. One set lasted me over two years of constant gigging. Yes, when they are new, they are zingy, gritty, growly, etc. When they settle in after a few months, they bloom. I respectfully think the OP is just experiencing "new string zing." Turn down the tone knob on the instrument a number or two and keep playing.
  4. Yes, zombie thread. And I understand the manufacturing issues of the last two years. So just curious - any further development on the PolyChromes?
  5. I purchased one of these 18mm string spacing bridges for a similar project and have been very pleased. It is very similar to an Ibanez bridge: http://www.ebay.com/itm/Chrome-4-String-Bridge-For-Bass-Guitar-L-Shape-Saddle-Parts-String-Spacing-18mm-/181287137942?hash=item2a358e3296:g:YQcAAOSwbqpTt7SY
  6. EMG active soapbars are a direct drop in; all you need is to find a place to put the battery. Instead of a full-blown EQ setup, I have found it most versatile to have a master volume, active balance, EMG-EXB variable scoop, and an active tone knob. You can get them in a variety of tonalities: [url="http://www.emgpickups.com/bass/extended-series.html"]http://www.emgpickup...ded-series.html[/url] The DC was made to emulate a MusicMan pickup. In the MusicMan position, it does alright. To me, with its upper mid/low treble emphasis, it is hollow in the neck (P-bass) position, and too brittle from being too close to the bridge in the J-bridge position, which are roughly the positions the pickups are in on the Spectre Legend. On my party bass, which has a similar setup, and which I was also going to use on a Legend I used to own briefly (until I got an offer I couldn't refuse), I have a CS in the neck position to get a really round, meaty tone, and a JX in the bridge position to get all the wonderful things that a J-bridge pickup does, in the extended version to get more highs to contrast the regular CS, hooked up to controls as described above. If you do go the J or JX version of the soapbar in the bridge, make sure it is rotated correctly to get the active element in the proper J-bridge position. On my party bass, the routing was too close to the bridge, and I had to flip the pickup around to get the active coil just far enough from the bridge that it more emulated the placement of a J-bridge pickup, and the character of tone came back after being too thin beforehand.
  7. Rickenbacker does offer the HB-1 pickup as an aftermarket item. You need to contact Rosetti, the UK distributor for RIC: http://www.rosetti.co.uk/Browse/Parts/Rickenbacker/Pickups
  8. Tone? Great tone. Definitely usable, if they have been kept sealed and dry so no corrosion set in on the core wire. Even if the wrap is stainless steel, the core wire on bass strings is usually carbon steel to take the tension, and it can rust or corrode over the decades. £250 worth of tone? Unless I had a recording gig that needed exactly that tone and was part of a very lucrative record deal, um, no. £25 to £50, maybe, if I really, really wanted them, and was willing to take the chance on the unseen condition of the core wire.
  9. The reason it does not sound "thick" is because, according to the specs, the body is maple, which naturally has a dip in the frequency response in the upper bass - exactly the opposite of what we perceive as a "thick" tone. That's why maple is used as a top for mahogany body guitars - to give clarity and tame the upper bass/lower mids to those instruments. It is also what the bodies and necks of Rickenbacker instruments are famously made from in order to get their signature tone. It sounds to me like you need a bass with an alder, mahogany, or agathis body. Alder is neutral, mahogany has a mid push, and agathis less so. The body of my Ibanez SRA500 is made from agathis, and it is lightweight and even sounding with the maple neck, and with the active EMG's I put in it, I can get any tone from transparent to as thick as treacle out of it.
  10. I use a Fishman Full Circle with my plywood bass for jazz/dance band gigs, and it is well received. Please PM me for further discussion.
  11. [quote name='BigRedX' timestamp='1462395235' post='3042776'] Never measure the scale length from the bridge. The best thing to do is to measure from the fingerboard side of the nut to the 12th fret and double it. [b]This is the scale length[/b]. Then place the bridge in position with one of the saddles wound as far forward as it will go and another wound fully back and measure from the nut to the front of each of these saddles. The shorter measurement should be slightly less than than the scale length calculated earlier. The longer should be at least 1/2 an inch more than the scale length. If the measurements are within the range then all is good with the existing bridge mounting holes. If not then you'll have to reposition. [/quote] This.
  12. Because of the thickness of E strings generally, they can be stiff and inertial in the higher positions compared to the A-D-G strings. I don't think it is a "problem," rather, an inherent aspect of the nature of the string. It could be that particular string has something wrong internally, or has too much damping material in the windings. If the notes that seem to die out on the E string resonate with the proper intonation, articulation, tone and fall-off on other strings in lower positions, then it probably is not the bass. The best way to find out if it is the bass or a string: put a 3/4 T-I Spiro Mittel (T-I part number 3885,5) on the bass and see what happens, since T-I Spiros tend to have a long, long pizz sustain by comparison to almost all other double bass strings, and are known for their pizz character.
  13. iiipopes

    Fender PJs

    The only item about a P/J that I recommend, if going with conventional passive pickups instead of actives, is to use a split-coil humbucker for the J pickup so that it will match the noise reduction of the P pickup; and the only logistical detail I recommend is that the player consider getting an instrument, or if it is being installed aftermarket, to consider using the '70's position (slightly closer to the bridge than the '60's position) for the J-pickup to get a little more contrast in the tone of the two pickups.
  14. [quote name='BigRedX' timestamp='1457968543' post='3003475']It sounds as though for me a "balanced" tension set would all feel to loose.[/quote] Not necessarily. As a matter of fact, the tensions are actually geared with most "balanced" sets to the tension of the G string. For example, scroll down to the bottom of D'Addario's page to see that the string tension on their XL "Balanced" sets in all three "standard" gauges, i.e., 40, 45 and 50, is adjusted a bit on all of the sets a bit to equalize everything, especially to keep the low E from feeling floppy: http://www.daddario.com/balanced_tension.page?sid=ca8402ef-45f4-45f3-9f06-3339d9cf48c0
  15. Yes, occasionally a nut does need compensation for a variety of reasons: 1) misplaced at factory due to tolerances in the gang saw; 2) the play likes higher action or likes to "dig in" more, and nut slot height is one way to prevent fret clack; 2) very light strings that tend to pull irrespective of how the action is set; 3) or a host of other reasons. I have nut shims on my custom half-fanned fret P/J, about which there is a thread somewhere on the forum. I use Stephen Delft - style nut shims to correct the intonation at the nut: http://www.mimf.com/nutcomp/
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