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 I'm going passive! 
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Post I'm going passive!
This post is really just to vent my current frustration with my battery-powered ACTV-2.

I've spent years of always wondering "is it the battery?" whenever a signal is weak.
Today, I ran out to buy a battery before my afternoon gig, came home, opened up The Block to install the new battery (they don't seem to slide out easily like they once did) when I realized...
I SNAPPED A WIRE ON THE BATTERY TERMINAL.

Gig canceled.

I'm ready to upgrade to PASV-4, and leave the woes of the 9V battery behind.

I'm also intrigued with the possibilities of the extra pickups.

Now, the questions are... when will I have enough money saved up to pay for the upgrade?
Beyond that, when will I have any time to send my Stick out to have the new pickup installed?
(I don't like to go very long without gigging, or playing the Stick for that matter)

Maybe it's time to max out a credit card -- what I'd really like is to have a brand new Stick with PASV-4, and keep the old Stick as a spare/practice instrument.
I've played professionally for over ten years with my whole career on the hinges of one single Stick.

Oh, the challenges of being a musician, and a Stickist at that!

On the bright side, I have more gigs coming in than ever before, and all my recent gigs have been more exciting than ever.

People are dancing to the music I play!
It's amazing!

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"Dude! What is that thing?!?"
- Brian Atkinson, Sticktuitiveness - Episode 1: First Impressions

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8lbeUKSIiBc


Wed Apr 26, 2017 8:50 am
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Post Re: I'm going passive!
flint wrote:
This post is really just to vent my current frustration with my battery-powered ACTV-2.

I've spent years of always wondering "is it the battery?" whenever a signal is weak.
Today, I ran out to buy a battery before my afternoon gig, came home, opened up The Block to install the new battery (they don't seem to slide out easily like they once did) when I realized...
I SNAPPED A WIRE ON THE BATTERY TERMINAL.

Gig canceled.

I'm ready to upgrade to PASV-4, and leave the woes of the 9V battery behind.

I'm also intrigued with the possibilities of the extra pickups.

Now, the questions are... when will I have enough money saved up to pay for the upgrade?
Beyond that, when will I have any time to send my Stick out to have the new pickup installed?
(I don't like to go very long without gigging, or playing the Stick for that matter)

Maybe it's time to max out a credit card -- what I'd really like is to have a brand new Stick with PASV-4, and keep the old Stick as a spare/practice instrument.
I've played professionally for over ten years with my whole career on the hinges of one single Stick.

Oh, the challenges of being a musician, and a Stickist at that!

On the bright side, I have more gigs coming in than ever before, and all my recent gigs have been more exciting than ever.

People are dancing to the music I play!
It's amazing!


I actually saw saxaphonist "Richard Elliott" have his wireless battery go out right in the middle of a solo once! Got to love batteries!


Wed Apr 26, 2017 9:07 am
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Post Re: I'm going passive!
Update:
I busted out the soldering gun and re-attached the wire.

Apparently I didn't do a good enough job because I'm getting no sound.

Good thing my local Guitar Center has a repair guy on staff.
I'll leave this one to the pro.

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"Dude! What is that thing?!?"
- Brian Atkinson, Sticktuitiveness - Episode 1: First Impressions

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8lbeUKSIiBc


Wed Apr 26, 2017 9:45 am
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Post Re: I'm going passive!
Hey Flint, sorry to hear about the conundrum. You're not alone - for what it's worth, here is my 2 cents.

I had this same situation while touring with the Inclined. You will require a second instrument. You're a professional, you need to have a contingency plan not only for your amp and pedalboard, but also, for your axe. When it's time to send it in to the mothership, you'll have a backup, like Gimli. :D

Image

Given your busy schedule, I would NOT recommend having one instrument with a passive pickup and one with an active pickup. There are some that go with a hybrid pickup (active on the melody side and passive on the bass side), but this requires a rig configured to accommodate this. That is a separate (and probably long) conversation, consider that entirely out of scope for this dialog.

If you do decide on a PASV-4, know that there are 2 slightly different versions of the same pickup. Ensure that you are getting the most recent rev (that does not require an ground wire). I am certain bSharp can clarify the details surrounding this.

Having gone from Stickup to ACTV to R-Block to PASV and back to ACTV-2, I experienced a sense of longing for a TONE knob on the PASV-4. If you have a good mixer or pedal, you can dial this in. I was not ready for that and consequently switched back.

Michael Johnstone had some excellent guidance on moving off of a PASV-4, I am hoping he will get wind of this discussion and share with you what he shared with me.

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Wed Apr 26, 2017 10:35 am
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Post Re: I'm going passive!
flint wrote:
This post is really just to vent my current frustration with my battery-powered ACTV-2.

I've spent years of always wondering "is it the battery?" whenever a signal is weak.
Today, I ran out to buy a battery before my afternoon gig, came home, opened up The Block to install the new battery (they don't seem to slide out easily like they once did) when I realized...
I SNAPPED A WIRE ON THE BATTERY TERMINAL.

Gig canceled.

I'm ready to upgrade to PASV-4, and leave the woes of the 9V battery behind.

I'm also intrigued with the possibilities of the extra pickups.

Now, the questions are... when will I have enough money saved up to pay for the upgrade?
Beyond that, when will I have any time to send my Stick out to have the new pickup installed?
(I don't like to go very long without gigging, or playing the Stick for that matter)

Maybe it's time to max out a credit card -- what I'd really like is to have a brand new Stick with PASV-4, and keep the old Stick as a spare/practice instrument.
I've played professionally for over ten years with my whole career on the hinges of one single Stick.

Oh, the challenges of being a musician, and a Stickist at that!

On the bright side, I have more gigs coming in than ever before, and all my recent gigs have been more exciting than ever.

People are dancing to the music I play!
It's amazing!


I totally understand this. I only have one instrument too and the stress of thinking that something might go wrong and I don't have a contingency plan... keeps me awake at night! Plus, it's not like you can get somebody to lend you one a phone call away... plus, the kind of thing we do, if we can't play the whole concert just gets canceled. :(


Enviado do meu iPhone usando o Tapatalk

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Wed Apr 26, 2017 11:19 am
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Post Re: I'm going passive!
Maybe a full instrument isn't necessary...
How about having a back up pickup block?

But I am with Gene...
I think a professional musician (which I am not but hope to be) should have a back up. The instrument may never fail you... but there may be that one time your Stick spontaneously combusts in the middle of a set...

I've always been the guy with extras of everything...
When I played in a band I was the one with extras of everything and carried a tool bag so I can do quick fixes. I almost never used any of the tools or backup items. But those super rare times that I did, it saved the show.
When I go pro, you bet I will be getting another NS.

It would be cool to offer an in depth repair class at one of the seminars. Nothing too extensive. In addition to the truss, string height, and intonation that is discussed, it would be cool to see the pickup removed and opened up. Maybe change out the 9V battery terminal and the 1/4" jack. Maybe even give some basic soldering tips... safety, making your own cable, splicing wires, shrink wrap, etc...

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Wed Apr 26, 2017 11:27 am
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Post Re: I'm going passive!
Gene: Agreed. As a professional, a backup instrument is simply necessary.
I've been thinking on it for a while.

I'm still pretty convinced I want to go passive, though.
I only use the ACTV-2 because it's what I've always had. When I first bought it, I really didn't know what I wanted.

It sounds great, but I'm not really attached to the active pickup as "part of my sound".
I do believe I would like to explore the passive tones.
At the very least, having both options seems reasonable to me.

I certainly wouldn't miss the ritual of swapping batteries out.

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"Dude! What is that thing?!?"
- Brian Atkinson, Sticktuitiveness - Episode 1: First Impressions

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8lbeUKSIiBc


Wed Apr 26, 2017 12:10 pm
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Post Re: I'm going passive!
Hi Flint. I recently had a problem with the instrument cable input of my PASV-4. It seems there is a loose wire in there somewhere but it is difficult to see anything. But, I have an older Stick with an ACTV-2 pick up. The pick ups are interchangeable and take about 2 minutes to switch out. There may be some small adjustments needed to get the string to pick up distance where you want it, but I think you could just order a PASV-4 block and have SE ship it to you. No need for a whole new Stick, if you don't presently have the means.(that is not to say that the pick ups themselves are cheap...just much less expensive than a whole new Stick)

The pick ups sound very different, and the ACTV-2 is much quieter than the PASV-4, but after a day or two I became accustomed to the new sound and may even prefer it.

Good luck and sorry to hear about your need to cancel.

Mike


Wed Apr 26, 2017 2:33 pm
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Post Re: I'm going passive!
Hmm, I'm thinking new pickup AND new Stick. Right MK? :D

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Wed Apr 26, 2017 3:12 pm
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Post Re: I'm going passive!
Mike, I am almost certain that I inquired once and was told that I would need to have some kind of retrofit to accomodate the PASV-4.
Perhaps I was mistaken, or there was a miscommunication -- maybe they thought I was asking about going from Stickup to Block?

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"Dude! What is that thing?!?"
- Brian Atkinson, Sticktuitiveness - Episode 1: First Impressions

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8lbeUKSIiBc


Wed Apr 26, 2017 3:23 pm
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