Upgrade Day! Anyone Else Upgrading?

I wouldn’t say that! Just pointing out my opinions here:

If you’re upgrading the preamp, you should consider upgrading to a three-band because they are much more useful than a two-band.

If you’re to the point where you’ll be changing to push/pull pots, or drilling new pot holes, an optional mod to consider that is a very nice feature would be an active/passive switch.

Both are optional, but speaking for myself, if I were upgrading a preamp I would never take it to another two-band.


John East’s stuff is quite popular, also for people not so good at wielding a soldering iron :grin:



Thank you both.for your replies.

I’ve seen the John East ones and the fact they don’t require soldering is a massive plus.

I really want to avoid the drill as the additional knob will not fly under the radar of the all seeing eye and I’d have to come clean about my problem,there’s bass related things arriving at the house regularly as it is😂

I’ve seen the active/ passive ones too and thought that would be good to have.
So if I was to stay with three knobs on the outside what would be the way to go?
Push pull on volume for active/passive
Another for the high and mids( is that even possible, I really have no clue) and bass remains bass?
I think my budget has been breached! :joy:


While I am sure it is possible to wire up a push/pull pot as an active/passive switch I am not sure about how to do it. Active/passive switches are usually DPDT switches. If the push/pull pot switches are too, you’re probably all good :slight_smile:

@terb might know better.

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I’m screwed​:joy::joy::joy: should have just kept my squier PJ. Now all I do is google and fiddle with things! I definitely want to keep the same “face” without any extra switches. So a three band would still be an option in that case?


sorry I have not read all the recent posts but yeah an active/passive switch would work if it’s a DPDT. it’s exactly the same switching circuit than in a “true bypass” pedal. all the push/pull pots I’ve had were DPDT.

the base logic is pretty straightforward :

and the best way to wire this on a DPDT is this one, because it allows the preamp to be grounded when not in use :

'hope it helps !


Thank you! I’m in over my head , but at least I’m learning


@joergkutter @Stando I’d encourage considering that soldering can be approachable. It’s going to make the mod that @terb suggests possible. The solder will melt into place long before it gets hot enough to damage a part. If the insulation on the wire is melting back, that’s your warning to stop applying heat. It’s very satisfying to make a perfect shiny joint. You can practice all day long on things that don’t matter to get comfortable.


I appreciate the encouragement, Dave, but I figure there are a few things in life where I could see it is a lost cause for me from the get-go… and electronics is one of them. I am just not interested in it. Maybe it’ll come, but I doubt it… And soldering goes hand in hand with the practical aspects of electronics, and I think I will leave this to people infinitely more capable of it - so, I “modded” my P bass with this nicely prepared potentiometer set from the good folks at ObsidianWire :smile:


I completely understand and respect you honoring your limits.

I put the encouragement out there so people don’t get the idea it’s an automatic no-go.

For me it’s mechanical things. I’ve heard more than once, “How did you manage to do that???!?” referring to something I broke in an unimaginable way.


Thank you for all the info and encouragement.

I’ve found a nordstrand 3 band eq that has a passive switch on the volume, stacked treble with bass and another stack for mids.
I reckon that is the direction on leaning towards with the two mm4.2 pickups.

I’m trying to make sense of it all ,but electronics is not my forte by any stretch of the imagination


Traded for this jack cassady metallic gold! It sounds good! Very fun to play as well!


I’ll leave that up to others to comment on. Stuff inside the bass is not my forte.


Truth to be told I should probably just focus on playing rather than looking at all the bling I could have!


I put on a set of DR Black Beauties on my JB. Okay, a minor upgrade but considering how I’ve been playing pretty happy that I did it myself.

Old strings were perfectly fine but wanted to do something to make the bass mine if that makes any sense.


Did you trade your acoustic?? I really liked the acoustic, but that does look fun to play.


No my fretless. Did not like the action on it . been jamming and doing mod 4 again with the new one!Has been a blast! Had to take a smoke break. Almost nailed. With. Or without you on fast all the way through. Will never get rid of my acoustic!


As far as I’m concerned the hobby is fun in all the ways that it is. I’m all for minimizing “should”!


Good point!

Unless, modding and upgrading/exchanging hardware is an underlying symptom of pushing off what really needs to done… like a fledgling writer/auteur claiming to wait for just one more update for his laptop or the word processing software, as it will really let him put down all his thoughts on a page so much better :joy:

(PS: not really innocent here myself!!)


I know I am a little late to the conversation, but have you ever watched the YT channel LowEndLobster?
He did a whole thing where he modded like 5 Sub Ray4 with Pre-amp and pick ups. he had a video for each mod, then did a shoot out where he played them all in the sam video.

Really helpful if you are looking to upgrade.

In all honesty, I think the pick up makes up most of the sound difference.

I upgraded my pick up in my Ray 4 to the Aguilar pick up for $119. The sound was night and day difference and so much better. My friend did the pick up and pre-amp, (Agiular Pre-amp) and noticed that most of the upgrade difference (noticeable by ear) comes from the pick up.

I bet you could get away with adding two Agiular or Seymour or EMG pick ups, which would be around your $300 budget, and you will love the sound so much better.

I think you might in fact get better results this way, because you would be going for high quality pick ups instead of budgeting between the pro-amp and a more mid line pick up.

Just something to think about and if you get a chance, look up LowEndLobster on Youtube and look for any of his upgrade Ray4 videos and his Mint-o-Ray video and his MOLD SMOOTHIE is fun and educational as well. If you do decide to do the package with pre-amp and pickups, he showed some budget ones that he used for the Mold Smoothie, or the Mint-O-Ray (he was working with a budget on those projects) and he got pretty good results staying within the $300 range (but you have 2 pick ups, so consider that, you may really have to cheap out on the pick up if you replace the pre-amp and it might not be as good as the stock pre-amp with some top line pick ups would sound.)

And once you start watching the LowEndLobster videos, you might need to talk yourself into turning him off, like talking to yourself like a little kid.
Ok, time for bed now, turn off the lobster guy, he will still be there tomorrow, maybe even with a new video. LOL