Washburn Basses > Bantam Basses

XB500 pickup distortion



Not reassuring that this is the first post in the section, but hey, maybe I'm just lucky.

I've had an XB-500 with active electronics for eight or nine years now, and some time ago it seems the pickups started distorting. The bass hasn't seen heavy play since I'm primarily a lead guitarist, so it's not been abused; additionally, if the battery was going I'm sure it wouldn't distort; the pickups just wouldn't work.

I say it distorts because it's exactly like running the bass through an amp at excessive gain; the sound distorts when the strings are played hard.

Why do I say it's the pickups? Well, I've put the bass through two different effects pedals, direct through a stereo system, through headphones, and through my Marshall guitar amplifier, and on all of these systems, and REGARDLESS of the volume setting on my bass itself, the sound continues to distort in identically the same way. I've used different leads as well, but no change. So it must come from the bass itself.

Is this a known phenomenon? Is it the pickups, the batteries, dust in the electronics, what? Anyone have any idea? Thanks for any input.


have you tried changing the battery though?

What do you want to do tomorrow?

well, budhha's right.  If you havent already, then put a new battery in.

Also, check the belnd control on the bass. its very unlikely that both pickups have developed the exact same fault at the exact same time. It may be that the active tone circuit is shot but normally distorted output happens when the battery is getting close to dead.  

Id get a schematic of the wiring and check everything is connected where it should be.  Then, try rewiring the bass with each pickup going straight to the output jack (and connected to the battery if required). that way you can eliminate the pickups one by one and narrow it down to whats causing the problem.  

I believe they put bartolini's in some of the XB's, if its possible my advice would be to make it passive and get an outboard active eg pedal or something similar.  Boss BEQ7 is what I use.

Hope this helps


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