Rockabilly Fingerboard 'Clicky' Transducer (Pickup) for Upright Bass
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Back in 1998 I talked with a lot of Rockabilly players about helping them to get THE SOUND. There was nothing out there that could deliver both a strong, feedback-resistant bass signal AND that retro or psychobilly-style fingerboard slap sound. Everybody had all kinds of stuff, expensive bits and lots of wires hanging off their basses trying to get the sound.
As a longtime bassist myself, I concentrated on coming up with an "out of the box" solution, and came up with a concept for a new pickup system - the Bass Master Rockabilly setup. Dieter Kaudel of K&K Sound responded with prototypes, and we came up with the first pickup system specifically created to serve the need of Rockabilly, Country, Bluegrass, and even Jazz players who need to convey the slap and other fingerboard sounds -- complete with commanding bass signal.
This pickup is designed to deliver the fingerboard slap sound. It's a specifically-built transducer designed to be taped to the back side of your fingerboard near the top neck joint. You can purchase this fingerboard pickup separately so that you can integrate it with your existing bass pickup.
This specially-shaped full range pickup can fit flush into the rear curvature of the board to capture as much of those percussive and warm sounds as you like. As I experimented with our prototypes, I found fascinating differences in tonal responses and resonances depending on the location of the transducer; tonal variations were apparent when placing the pickup above, at the edge, and below the area where the back of the fingerboard transitions from straight to scooped out. Extra tape is provided so you can experiment, and achieve exactly the type of response you want - from that Bill Black click to a fat thunk. Complete instructions and advice are included to help you find your own personal sweet spot! The Fingerboard Transducer has a 26" long (approx.) cable that runs down the back of your fingerboard, through an isolating piece of foam in the bridge, terminating to the usual 1/4" jack that straddles the strings below your bridge.
Given that surface mount transducers generate a lower signal than transducers under pressure (like the Bass Max, for example), a preamp will likely be necessary to boost the signal to the level needed to complement your bass sound pickup. Many players will choose one of the two channel preamps we offer, like the Dual Channel Pro, to mix their bass and fingerboard pickups. See all your options by clicking on Preamps in the menu, or check out options shown below in the related products.
Need to figure out some of the more in-depth features of this product? Here's a copy of the manual, in PDF format, here.
You may wish to visit the manufacturer's website to see if a more recent version is available.
For valid warranty claims, K&K will repair the item and ship it back to the customer for free, via the lowest cost shipping method. Initial shipping charges are to be paid by the customer. We normally have a 1-2 business day turnover time for repairs.
Initiating a Warranty Claim
- Please test the K&K product thoroughly to ensure that it is the source of the problem (not a cable or other unit used in combination with the item). If the product requires a battery, ensure that the battery is new and fresh.
- Call K&K (1-800-867-6863 x107) or e-mail tech support to obtain an RA number. This number is valid for 10 days. Items returned without a valid RA number may not be processed.
- Include proof of purchase to show that the item is within the 12-month warranty period. If proof of purchase cannot be obtained, or if the item is outside the warranty period, a repair fee may be charged.
- Package the product securely. K&K is not responsible for damage incurred during transit.
- Please include the following information with the package:
- RA number
- Description of the problem
- Copy of invoice, sales receipt, or similar proof of purchase
- Complete contact information with phone number
K&K Sound Systems Inc
Attn: RA # [Please indicate your unique RA number here]
92798 Cape Arago Hwy
Coos Bay, OR 97420
I just purchased this for my upright that I planned on using in more of a slap fashion , however I was blown away, I have a much better bass that I have a higher end pickup on and it’s no comparison, I will be replacing the (so - called higher end one) asap, great sounding probably underpriced .