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1dallek1
Junior
Username: 1dallek1

Post Number: 14
Registered: 12-2006
Posted on Friday, November 02, 2007 - 1:41 pm:   Edit Post

hi Dallek here, I have the tribute and a whole host of other guitars I have customized most of them with the cae line of buffers and installed effect loops in all of them as per the dozin schematic and have recreated jerryies rig for the most part.
Ok with that out of the way the tribute is the least Garcia sounding guitar I have and the PHIGA the closest and I mean pretty much dead on. I want to redo the electronics on the tribute starting with the pickups if I can

The question -- Are the alembic pickups in the tribute active in any way, they donít appear to be. they have 2 wires, hot and ground. Can I replace them with dimarzio "super 2" and plug them strait into the alembic filters? The super 2's appear to be the same dimensions and will fit in the tribute body, help help
bsee
Senior Member
Username: bsee

Post Number: 1821
Registered: 3-2004
Posted on Friday, November 02, 2007 - 3:03 pm:   Edit Post

The first thing you should do if you want to go through with such a project is find a partner. I bet someone would finance all of your purchases in exchange for the original electronics.
davehouck
Moderator
Username: davehouck

Post Number: 5623
Registered: 5-2002
Posted on Friday, November 02, 2007 - 7:32 pm:   Edit Post

Have you considered selling the Tribute?
1dallek1
Junior
Username: 1dallek1

Post Number: 15
Registered: 12-2006
Posted on Friday, November 02, 2007 - 7:51 pm:   Edit Post

i asked a simple question can i replace the pickups, i dont need to sell it i dont need a backer, you can see some of my stuff in the introductions area. and if something isnt right im not afraid to fix it so does anyone have an awnser
davehouck
Moderator
Username: davehouck

Post Number: 5625
Registered: 5-2002
Posted on Friday, November 02, 2007 - 7:53 pm:   Edit Post

Yes, all Alembic electronics packages are "active".
1dallek1
Junior
Username: 1dallek1

Post Number: 16
Registered: 12-2006
Posted on Saturday, November 03, 2007 - 6:25 am:   Edit Post

Hi you answered me on the forum but not quite what I asked the filters are active but the pickups only use 2 wires this does not look like powered pickups like emg pickups which use 3 one for power. In this case with the tribute it looks like active filters but passive pickups so my original question is can I swap dimarzio super 2 for the alembic pickups?
ns

(Message edited by 1dallek1 on November 03, 2007)
dannobasso
Senior Member
Username: dannobasso

Post Number: 660
Registered: 3-2004
Posted on Saturday, November 03, 2007 - 6:31 am:   Edit Post

The battery is an indication of active electronics. They power the onboard preamp circut. If you decide to replace your guts, there are people here who would be more than willing to buy them from you. Simple.
1dallek1
Junior
Username: 1dallek1

Post Number: 17
Registered: 12-2006
Posted on Saturday, November 03, 2007 - 7:13 am:   Edit Post

there is another forum for selling things if that is what i wanted i would be over there as i said above "i dont need to sell it i dont need a backer" what i need is a real awnser, dannobasso dosent have it, please refrain from making these pointless posts and moving the thread away from my needs please, again just because the filters are active dosent mean the pickups are, again are the pickups active?
fc_spoiler
Senior Member
Username: fc_spoiler

Post Number: 654
Registered: 5-2006
Posted on Saturday, November 03, 2007 - 7:17 am:   Edit Post

Alembic pickups have about 1/3 output compared to the stock pickups that came with my Fender. I think there's a possibilty the Dimarzio's have too much output for the filters/preamp, resulting in unwanted, not cool sounding overdrive...
I would check with the folks at Alembic before proceeding ;-)

Edit: They do work without a battery/preamp, only there's much less output than regular passive pickups.

(Message edited by fc_spoiler on November 03, 2007)
hieronymous
Advanced Member
Username: hieronymous

Post Number: 231
Registered: 1-2005
Posted on Saturday, November 03, 2007 - 8:30 am:   Edit Post

There is a distinction between active electronics and active pickups. Sometimes the pickups themselves are active - but (more?) often passive pickups are couple with an active preamp.

Unfortunately, though, I don't have an answer for the question at hand.
lidon2001
Advanced Member
Username: lidon2001

Post Number: 354
Registered: 4-2005
Posted on Saturday, November 03, 2007 - 9:37 am:   Edit Post

For some reason, I don't think a member who own's a Phiga among others, and uses Hard Truckers needs any type of financial advice. I am surprised others here would'nt see that. Which is why you will only see after pics if I choose to do the same with Pele. lol

That being said, my tech said he could get the Seymour Duncan pickups I chose to work with the Skylark circuit, despite the fact that Alembic pickups are very low impedance. The preamps are on the filter pot usually I believe, not in the pickup like EMG's which I think Mr. Dallek might be inquiring about. I don't know how or what my tech would do to get the SD's to work, but he said the changes could easily be reversed. I was planning to go with a full passive system myself.
bsee
Senior Member
Username: bsee

Post Number: 1822
Registered: 3-2004
Posted on Saturday, November 03, 2007 - 10:21 am:   Edit Post

I don't care who you are or what question you're asking. People are providing valid responses based upon their knowledge and experience, some of which is pretty significant. There is absolutely no reason or excuse for rudeness, especially from someone who is seeking free advice. When in doubt, we'd rather see a guy get more information than he needs than give a one word answer that gets misinterpreted and leads to a hack job.

This is a group of people interested in Alembic instruments, mostly with reverence. We occasionally see them show up for sale with alternate pickups or electronics and, almost universally, the reaction is disgust or sadness. Additionally, there are people looking for Alembic electronics to upgrade Strats and other guitars. If you're going to swap them because you don't like them, then someone else would benefit from you're offering them for sale with all the connectors intact. Rich or poor has nothing to do with it.

I suspect that the information you got from Flip and Harry is about as good as you're going to get without calling Alembic directly to run your ideas by them.
lidon2001
Advanced Member
Username: lidon2001

Post Number: 355
Registered: 4-2005
Posted on Saturday, November 03, 2007 - 10:39 am:   Edit Post

Bob, you know not what you speak. My tech is Kevin Kaufman, from Kaufman Daenzer Music. He was Jaco's tech, and the put the REAL Bass of Doom together as the story goes. He is certified Fender, Martin, and EMG. He was one of the key players in the design of arguably Fender's most successful singature model bass. I trust his experience equally, if not moreso, than Alembic as he works and repairs all types of instruments, not just one brand.

Jerry used DiMarzios. A huge fan of Jerry, if you bothered to look into who was making the question, who appears not to worry about cost from the rest of his equipment, made a question about pickups, not selling them. Heck, Dallek probably has a couple McIntosh stuffed back there somewhere. Sorry if I take the time to notice members equipment and try to make my comments fit. You apparently just comment without looking into the persons' background. And that's ok...

Send me an email if you want to continue this further. Dallek is looking for info on electronics, not pricing.
mica
Moderator
Username: mica

Post Number: 4907
Registered: 6-2000
Posted on Saturday, November 03, 2007 - 11:43 am:   Edit Post

Note that if you ask a question of a community, you will get a variety of responses. You're always welcome to call or write to us at Alembic to get a direct answer to your question without any other suggestions.

In response to 1dallek1's original question, Alembic pickups are not active. I would add that nobody else's are either. Some makers may package a preamp inside the pickup housing, but the transducer is still not active. Our preamp is repairably located outside of the pickup housing.

I don't have much support to offer about wiring our electronics with other maker's pickups (or vice-versa) since it's something that we don't have experience with. I would suggest if you are trying to replicate what Jerry had in his guitar, then you'd want to change the electronics as well as the pickups. It seems like you've got good experience for that.

The pickup routings in the Tribute are standard single coil and humbucker shapes, so you should be able to drop in other ones without modifying the guitar. You can adjust the gain of each pickup with the trimmer on each filter control if needed.

We've had lots of other responses from customers that they can get their Jerry tones from the Tribute, but perhaps they are using a different rig. Of course, everyone hears a little differently too. Ultimately, the guitar needs to work for you.

Hope you're able to make your Tribute guitar into something that will work for you.
bsee
Senior Member
Username: bsee

Post Number: 1824
Registered: 3-2004
Posted on Saturday, November 03, 2007 - 12:21 pm:   Edit Post

Tom, I would send you an email, but you don't publish your address. I know exactly what I am saying and stand behind it 100%. From your response, I don't believe you read and comprehended what I was saying and, instead, were looking for offense to take. You might read it again with a less defensive frame of mind. Here's a hint; There was nothing posted to question the competence of you, your tech, or Cornelius.

I would also say that if the only responses to questions on this board came from people who took ten or twenty minutes to study the profile, gear, and financial history of someone asking a question, there'd be a lot fewer posts.

Cornelius, Back on the original track, I wonder if you played with pickup heights and trim pots while you were trying to get the tone you seek?
lidon2001
Advanced Member
Username: lidon2001

Post Number: 356
Registered: 4-2005
Posted on Saturday, November 03, 2007 - 1:42 pm:   Edit Post

Sorry Dallek, I just stopped by the store and Kevin wasn't in. He can be difficult to get in touch with at times. I'll update if I learn anything more about the swap.
1dallek1
Junior
Username: 1dallek1

Post Number: 18
Registered: 12-2006
Posted on Saturday, November 03, 2007 - 4:04 pm:   Edit Post

I didnít mean any offence but the person hit me 2 times with selling my pickups and no real info, as I said I donít want to sell anything, next I didnít think the dimarzio would mate with your electronics but I had to try, the big problem is the conversion needs a strat style pickup selector for 3 pickups, Somewhere in this conversion I need a 5 way selector, now here is my new question, my 79 series 2 guitar has a rotating pickup selector which I believe can be installed in one of the pot holes, can I get this switch made in 5 position I have been at the companies web page but was overwhelmed by there selection
dallek
ps
in response to BSEE i used the height to no avail but i really dont know what trim pots you mean, i have studied the cavity and see trims on the filters but alembic supplies no technical info i could find so i hesitate to touch this
mica
Moderator
Username: mica

Post Number: 4909
Registered: 6-2000
Posted on Saturday, November 03, 2007 - 5:52 pm:   Edit Post

This sheet with instructions for the electronics should have shipped with your guitar. I realize now that there wasn't a link in the FAQ for it, so I just made one.

Our rotary switches are 4-position. There are so many variations, I'll need to ask for some help from my dad to give you advice on a 5-position version.

You can make a brass plate to mount a blade switch and have if cover the original pickup selector holes. You could always make another plate to mount the three toggles again if you wanted to go back. Something similar looking to this guitar maybe.
mica
Moderator
Username: mica

Post Number: 4910
Registered: 6-2000
Posted on Saturday, November 03, 2007 - 5:55 pm:   Edit Post

I was thinking about this a little, and I wonder if you already have a guitar that nails the Jerry sound for you, wouldn't it be nice to have your Tribute sound different from the Phiga? I'm not trying to talk you out of doing what you need to do, but I am curious.
1dallek1
Junior
Username: 1dallek1

Post Number: 19
Registered: 12-2006
Posted on Sunday, November 04, 2007 - 5:47 am:   Edit Post

well well well, my effects loop was after the volume and was glued in place? my father is a doctor so I have surgical tools otherwise I couldn't have changed it. the documentation for the loop was not in my packet thanks for posting it. anyway my mutron is responding correctly now, so that helps. the alembic sound is bright if anyone thinks im wrong what can I say garcia also thought so but Iím staying like this for now. I have reservations about cutting into an alembic like this, greater minds than mine went into creating this thing , then there comes me the B movie mad scientist messing with nature, no good would come of it, "pull the string, pull the string"
ns
lbpesq
Senior Member
Username: lbpesq

Post Number: 2693
Registered: 7-2004
Posted on Sunday, November 04, 2007 - 8:59 am:   Edit Post

Cornelius:

If you do ever try hooking up some DiMarzio's to the Alembic eletronics, please report back on the results. I, for one, am certainly curious about the outcome of such a marraige. (It seems to me if you picked up three of the plug-in connectors Alembic uses on their pickups and put them on some DiMarzio's, you could easily just swap pickups in and out. I suspect this would work, other than you'd probably need to turn the preamps down for the DiMarzio's).

About your Phiga, how would you describe the neck profile? I have a Phiga Casta. Interesting guitar, but the neck is huge, almost a baseball bat! (Not my favorite).

Bill, tgo
1dallek1
Junior
Username: 1dallek1

Post Number: 20
Registered: 12-2006
Posted on Sunday, November 04, 2007 - 11:35 am:   Edit Post

ok this is the second time i hear about preamps, the filters have small pots on them these are just simple trims for gain control and not some kond of fancy impedance matching? you can adjust these without messing up anything, i really dont know because again i dont have any real info on what is going on in the cavity. yes my neck is big but thats how i like it in fact i have trouble with the tribute becouse there isn't enough there for me to work with
82daion
Intermediate Member
Username: 82daion

Post Number: 116
Registered: 5-2005
Posted on Sunday, November 04, 2007 - 11:53 am:   Edit Post

The pots are gain trim controls, nothing more.

They're there in order to keep the volume of all three pickups consistent when you select each individually.

What Bill's saying is that the output of the Dimarzio's would be huge as opposed to the output of the Alembic pickups, and the trim setting you'd use with the stock electronics would be excessive in that configuration; you'd need to turn the trimpots down to keep a reasonable output.

And no, you can't really mess anything up by adjusting the trimpots.
1dallek1
Junior
Username: 1dallek1

Post Number: 21
Registered: 12-2006
Posted on Sunday, November 04, 2007 - 7:58 pm:   Edit Post

Thanks to all this was not what I expected but it couldn't have turned out better, the loop belongs before the volume, I had no way of knowing this was set wrong. The sound is a little bright so I don't have to use the boss eq; Garcia mated his distortion boxed with separate boss eq's for tone correction, the sd2's need brightening when running through distortion boxes but not so much with the alembic pickups. Anyway it is responding correctly with my rack and as mica said it is nice to have a little different sound with all the fundamentals still there. This was a simple fix
1dallek1
ps here is the electronics in the phiga I had to completely redo it and i added the battery box Phiga cavity after i got to it

(Message edited by 1dallek1 on November 04, 2007)
dfung60
Advanced Member
Username: dfung60

Post Number: 281
Registered: 5-2002
Posted on Monday, November 05, 2007 - 12:28 am:   Edit Post

You've already got some definitive responses here from Mica, but I thought I'd ring in with a few thoughts.

First, I would concur that you should be able to substitute DiMarzios (or any other pickup) in place of the OEM Alembic pickups, and the only way that you can decide whether you like the change or not is to try it.

You'll need to either feel comfortable attacking the installation yourself or have an adventurous tech to go after this. The actual pickup connections are no big deal (the new pickup connections replace the old), but everything they attach to internally in the control cavity will be different than pretty much every guitar out there. There will be connectors (which you could just lop off, but wouldn't that be a shame?), unusual EQ boards, and a lot of wiring.

My experience is mostly with Series basses, and I think the guitar pickups are much less radical than the SC-1 pickups. Alembic is like nothing else out there - they use a very weak magnet and very little wiring on the coil, which has the result of a very, very low output pickup with only a fraction of the normal output. There's very specific reasons for this. The lower strength magnet reduces magnetic drag on the string which gives greater sustain and much purer harmonics. Less wire on the coil means less resistance which means better highs. It also means less inductance in the coil which also creates a different frequency response (the coil inductance is a big factor in the distinctive EQ "hump" of most pickups). If you took this wimpy output out passively to the amp, you wouldn't be able to drive the amp to full output and would probably suffer a lot of noise problems. So, the internal preamps buffer and boost the signal to normal (and super-normal) levels. That means the internal preamps of a Series bass will be set with high gain than the sort of active EQ circuits designed to work with conventional passive pickups.

I'll add incidentally, that the low magnet strength and low output transducer coil are also the EMG design principle, and they include the preamp inside the pickup to avoid noise problems and isolate the EQ boards. EMG also is a hum-cancelling design inside the potted case, so even the Strat-sized EMGs are humbuckers (that's why they hum less).

If the DiMarzios are high output pickups, then you may well find that they will overdrive the front end of the EQ circuit. You can reduce the pickup output level with a resistor, but this may cause additional tonal changes. If the input level is the problem, you really want to fix that in the EQ board, but that means you'd have to puzzle out the design of that PCB and figure out the appropriate component changes. This may not be a problem - the Series pickups are very unusual, and, from the general flow of discussions around here, it doesn't sound like the other bass pickups (and perhaps the guitar pickups) are as low output.

The unusual pickup design is definitely part of "the Alembic Sound". If you take a DiMarzio, Duncan, or Gibson pickup, they all have similar magnetic field strength and coil winding. Different choices in construction (diameter of the wire or magnet composition) will yield different tones, but the magnetic field that the string is sitting in is pretty similar for any of these. The Alembic design "sees" the string in a different way - whether that's good or not is totally subjective and definitely getting in to the mystical/voodoo zone.

Finding an alternate rotary selector switch may be problematic. If you wanted a 5-position switch that selected from 5 different inputs it would be no big deal, but when you want some of those positions to be combinations of other inputs, it gets complicated quick in the switch internals. The manufacturers will build anything you want if you want thousands of them (which is why 3- and 5-position blade switches and crazy PRS pickup selector switches can exist) but if you want one, you'll probably be in for a battle.

You didn't say it in the thread directly, but if what you were looking for was the sound of the Alembic woods and construction with more traditional electronics, I certainly can understand that. If I were going to try this, I would probably think about removing and setting aside the factory pickups and EQ and building up a second set of electronics. When you're talking about mods on a Tribute, you're way past the "money is no object" stage, and I suspect the replacement cost of just the Tribute electronics will exceed the cost of most whole guitars. If you try to graft more traditional electronics onto your Tribute EQ boards, you may find that the changes are too complicated to work out and not easily reversed. If you later decide to sell this guitar, you'll probably find that you'll take a truly horrendous hit on the resale value if you can't reverse your changes.

Good luck,

David Fung
1dallek1
Junior
Username: 1dallek1

Post Number: 22
Registered: 12-2006
Posted on Monday, November 05, 2007 - 3:57 am:   Edit Post

this clearly explains the brightness and articulation you get from alembic and maybe just the brightness of the emg. the jerry mod cost me around 300 in parts I do all the work so its dirt cheep, but I have a problem with cutting into the tribute, you see it needs a strat style pickup selector or similar . it isn't money or value the thing is a work of art plus when I approach it with a router I keep hearing "get out, get out" and the walls start bleeding
ha ha
ns
i just want to throw this out there, i'll probabally get in trouble for this to, in my experience alembic pickups dont break up well with distortion they get a real brittle sound. with work you can get it sort of right but its a problem for me anyway

(Message edited by 1dallek1 on November 05, 2007)
terryc
Advanced Member
Username: terryc

Post Number: 325
Registered: 11-2004
Posted on Monday, November 05, 2007 - 8:07 am:   Edit Post

Maybe I am missing the point but it's like getting a ferrari then putting a ford escort engine in it??
Each to their own I suppose
dfung60
Advanced Member
Username: dfung60

Post Number: 282
Registered: 5-2002
Posted on Monday, November 05, 2007 - 11:27 am:   Edit Post

Electrically or sonically the three pickup toggles on your Tribute (if that's the way yours is configured) isn't any different than a 5-way blade - it just feels different to use. And you gain the "all pickups on" position.

I personally would never consider routing the top for a new switch or even a brass plate to hold blade or toggles - you've got a carved top there and the "whoops" factor is just too terrifying if you didn't have a big milling machine and a custom body fixture!

As for the brittle sound... In normal guitars, there's sort of a conspiracy of events that gently robs you of your treble - overwound pickups, passive electronics that don't totally bypass, and the capacitance and resistance of your guitar cord. In an instrument like the Alembic, they've solved all the normal problems, but if you're looking for a traditional sound that might not be good. The result is more treble at your amp or rack input which results in the brittleness of tone.

A sort of very simple treble roll-off tone control at the front of your effects chain would probably solve the problem, but I don't know of anybody that makes anything like this. The overall effect of regular guitar wiring is so subtle that most people would feel like it was a box that wasn't doing anything. Normal EQ boxes have very sharp filtering curves to create a lot of effect in localized areas. You sort of need the opposite - a very wide-ranging, gentle EQ curve (like -3db/octave) that works over a wide range of the audio spectrum.

David Fung
lbpesq
Senior Member
Username: lbpesq

Post Number: 2697
Registered: 7-2004
Posted on Monday, November 05, 2007 - 12:25 pm:   Edit Post

David:

I would think that the toggles on the Further/Tribute package cannot just be swapped out for a traditional Strat-style blade switch. The blade is off/on only. Each of the toggles on the F/T set up is off/on/bright. What happens to the "bright" setting if swapped out for the blade with no mods?

Bill, tgo
byoung
Senior Member
Username: byoung

Post Number: 814
Registered: 12-2004
Posted on Monday, November 05, 2007 - 3:01 pm:   Edit Post

David,

The original Alembic filter design was built to solve just the problem you outline (for bass, however). As Ron kept solving issues (with muddy tone-- by adding things like an onboard preamp), it became difficult to produce the original tone, hence the need for low-pass filters.

And I suspect that a superfilter would do what you're suggesting.

Bradley

Edited for clarity

(Message edited by byoung on November 05, 2007)
1dallek1
Junior
Username: 1dallek1

Post Number: 23
Registered: 12-2006
Posted on Monday, November 05, 2007 - 3:03 pm:   Edit Post

lbpesq you loose the bright that is a function on the alembic filters
to terryc i am not swaping good for bad, i am replicating the tiger setup using a cae gain buffer to drive an effects loop, its not lacking in any way it is different it sounds different. this thread has been super for me it has opened my eyes to the different approaches to guitar sound. i started this thread because i had a problem with the way the tribute was responding to my well established setup. i discovered the problem, the loop came after the volume and i fixed it.the brightness issue was well explained by dfung60 and a few others (thank you) brightness is not the problem it was anymore after fixing the loop position. i have resolved the problem. i dont aggree with getting a ferrari then putting a ford escort engine in it.the tiger setup sounds great the alembic tribute and further are twists on it anyway till next time
thanks all
ns
terryc
Advanced Member
Username: terryc

Post Number: 326
Registered: 11-2004
Posted on Tuesday, November 06, 2007 - 3:05 am:   Edit Post

Well since I am not a dead fan and a bass player I can thank my lucky stars that I can get the Stanley Clarke/Mark King sound from my MK standard with the only modification is to turn the filters and switch the Q's..Good luck on your sound search.
dfung60
Advanced Member
Username: dfung60

Post Number: 283
Registered: 5-2002
Posted on Wednesday, November 07, 2007 - 12:16 am:   Edit Post

Bradley -

Actually, the Alembic filters (the bass ones anyway) are sort of opposite of the effect that you'd want to recreate the subtle treble loss of passive electronics and a cable.

The traditional passive losses ARE a low-pass filter, but the Alembic Q-filters are a quasi-parametric filter that's set up more like a bandpass filter. The Q-switch or CVQ is making a sharp and huge resonant peak and the filter knob is shifting the center frequency around. In the low-resonant setting (the least bright sounding one), the filter is acting more like a traditional low-pass, but still has pretty marked effect.

I don't really have much experience with the Superfilter, so I can't really comment on it. The tech description on Alembic's site describes the filters as having relatively steep shoulders (12db/oct) which would probably have a hard time emulating a cable. The damping factor control would definitely be in the ball park though. Traditionally, damping factor is the ratio of output impedance to input impedance between power amp and speaker or between amp stages. A long speaker cable can definitely lower damping factor, so I believe that a long instrument cable has a similar effect, although the numbers might not work out to be audibly significant. I'm not sure how a pot can vary DF though (it's normally a factor of the amplification circuit design). Power amps use negative feedback to reduce distortion (some of the output signal is fed back into the input to reduce distortion on steady state signals) - the DF knob may be adjusting the amount of feedback, although I'm not sure whether negative feedback is used in the preamp circuit.

Actually, one circuit that really does sounds sort of like "passive loss" is the "Sweet Switch" which was on the original Paul Reed Smith guitars (I think this largely disappeared in the early 90's). The original PRS guitars had a master volume, rotary pickup selector which included a number of unusual pickup coil combinations, and the Sweet Switch. There was no traditional tone control. The effect of the Sweet Switch was very subtle, a little midrange bump and a gentle roll-off of treble and bass. Since these PRS guitars were passive anyway, it often didn't sound like much was happening (and which is probably why it went away). I think this must have been switching some sort of inductor in (that's how you make a passive midrange control). This may actually be a productive (and inexpensive) area of research for 1dallek1 in trying to warm up the Tribute's tone. I've got some very old PRS Signature guitars that have this feature and it's an interesting facet of a very unique instrument.

I also remember seeing fleeting mentions of Alembic "mellow filters" which were on guitars back in the early days. I don't know what's up with them, but wonder if it was more probing in this same area.

David Fung
byoung
Senior Member
Username: byoung

Post Number: 816
Registered: 12-2004
Posted on Wednesday, November 07, 2007 - 1:21 pm:   Edit Post

David,

I'm going off of a discussion that Ron and I had at the NorCal get together. This was probably not pre-Alembic, but very early, when they were modifying other makers' instruments.

Their customers were literally using different cables to control low-pass filtering (on passive pickups; longer==lower pass), and wanted to be able to recreate that effect with Ron's new, active electronics.

It's more a historical question of "why filters?" than a discussion of the current design. Sorry I wasn't clear.
1dallek1
Junior
Username: 1dallek1

Post Number: 24
Registered: 12-2006
Posted on Wednesday, November 14, 2007 - 7:48 pm:   Edit Post

hi Iíve been at it again, first the correction of the effects loop in the tribute was the answer for me, it just sounds great, next I added a second buffer to the Phiga rosebud (Jangletone in front and CB-1 in the back) and I made some custom jacks. I just put the plug in the proper socket and boom it works, I could do it on the fly with a rotary switch but I need some room on the instrument to play

front route and back control cavity
freefuzz
New
Username: freefuzz

Post Number: 1
Registered: 2-2008
Posted on Wednesday, February 20, 2008 - 2:26 pm:   Edit Post

i have tried many different pickups with alembic electronics, and find that kinman pickups sound great with them. with humbuckers, i prefer wiring them in parallel to give them a clearer sound with a round bottom. i find that the new pickups as are incorporated in skylarks sound terrible! they are highly microphonic and squeal at high gain settings. i guess that has to do with whatever brittle plastic it is they use to hide their actual pickup in.
also, the "switch per pickup" solution is cool for studio work, but on stage it is quite clumsy.
there is another advantage to using other pickups with activator electronics. by soldering them to the inputs of the electronics, you have less problems with bad contacts. in my opinion, by making things easier to repair and replace, alembic created the achilles heel of the electronics. the only problems i've ever had have been those connections.

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