So you want to equip your bass guitar with active electronics? At one point in time, this was quite an ordeal to pull off, requiring an installation of a completely new system, something that costs money and takes a significant amount of time to do. With onboard preamps, you can now introduce an entirely new level of control and flexibility to any kind of bass guitar. These are the best bass onboard preamps, with each one we've chosen providing multiple bands of EQ to manipulate your bass tone, can be installed without having to gut your instrument, and they also control the volume of your bass guitar.
There certainly isn’t a shortage of tonal options when it comes to the Audere 3ZB bass guitar preamp. Customized to fit your order, you can implement features such as a four band EQ, three way impedance switch, and more. Read Full Review
One of the integral components to the Audere 3ZB bass guitar preamp is its three way load switch, which gives bassists the ability to raise and lower the impedance of their pickups. Choose between a bright thin sound, a natural range, or a deep and thorough low-end, using the first, second, and third positions, respectively. The 3ZB also can he equipped with active/passive switching and and LED battery indicator. You also get an adjustable gain which enables you to set levels for each pickup.
Prepare to get your tone in shape with Aguilar’s OBP-3 onboard preamp. This product offers a wide range of enhancements to get your axe sounding just right, and is easy to run. Read Full Review
Aguilar’s OBP-3 onboard preamp is the company’s most flexible design, with multiple wiring options to best fit your needs. The preamp is able to provide18dB boost/cut at 40Hz, 16dB boost/cut at either 400Hz or 800Hz, and 16dB boost/cut at 6.5kHz. The OBP-3 also features separate treble, mid, and bass pots. There’s also a black mini-toggle switch to select your preferred midrange frequency. Now you have the ability to really harness that fat tone which will turn every head in the venue when you play your bass guitar.
The Bartolini 5.3 A/P preamp takes much of the hassle out of the preamp experience by using a pre-wired harness. This saves time from having to wire the pre-amp and pots of your instrument and lets you get down to brass tacks. Read Full Review
Bartolini set the standard pretty high for active electronics when they first started pioneering the technology in the 1970's. The company’s 5.3 A/P preamp utilizes a three band EQ designed for two-pickups to help you achieve the desired sound for your bass guitar. It also features a mid-frequency selector switch. The volume control on this unit provides Active/Passive push-pull function and functions off 9V.
The whole purpose of installing an onboard bass preamp is to have total control over the sounds of your instrument, so why not really take it there? Demeter’s BEQP-1 fully embraces this philosophy, offering an active balance control of any kind of pickup. Read Full Review
The Demeter BEQP-1 bass onboard preamp doesn’t discriminate against any type of pickup. This unit will control the balance between any two pickups, whether that be active, passive, or piezo. It also provides active three band EQ for treble, bass, and mids. Each octave has a 6dB slope to reduce phase shift and offer up a more natural sound. And of course, each unit also includes a master volume control. The BEQP-1 operates from 9 to 27 volts.
The Michael Pope Flexcore bass onboard preamp offers a range of configurable options designed to bring out the best tone from your instrument. Best of all, orders can be customized, so if you have no need for certain EQ bands they can be completely omitted. Read Full Review
The Michael Pope Flexcore bass onboard preamp provides anywhere between one to four bands of EQ. No soldering is required for most installations, as the pickups are able to hook up to the preamp via screw terminals. There are many expansion modules that can be added to the installation of this preamp, including a coil tap switch, kill switch, mid frequency switch, and more. When you have configured this preamp to your liking, you’ll find that your harmonics expand beyond what they once were, and punch and warmth are just some of the enhanced attributes that you’ll find with every note that you play.