Page 1 of 1

Question about the eq controls on the Fly Bass

Posted: Tue Nov 30, 2021 4:30 pm
by MrWalker
I've got this wonderful Parker Fly Bass 5 that I'm getting more and more fond of. It's a fabulous instrument which is both comfortable and responsive.
My question is with regards to the eq controls. Normally, preamp controls are most commonly cut/boost with a mid de tent. However, on this instrument there are just no center detents on any pots. 😅 not even on the pan control of the magnetic pickups.
So, the question is simply... Are the controls boost only, or are they cut/boost with a lacking or possibly worn out center detent?

Thanks for any insight 😊

Re: Question about the eq controls on the Fly Bass

Posted: Wed Dec 01, 2021 1:47 pm
by vjmanzo
Hey @MrWalker—welcome to the Fly Bass club 8-)

The stacked piezo knob is the only knob on my Fly bass (an FB-4) that has a center detent and it’s just the lower of the two knob parts that controls EQ. Hope this helps!

Re: Question about the eq controls on the Fly Bass

Posted: Wed Dec 01, 2021 5:06 pm
by MrWalker
Yes, that's the case on mine as well. So that's why I wonder if the two band eq for the magnetic pickups are boost only or if they are cut/boost.... Since they are lacking the center detent.

Thanks for the welcome 😊 Been here a while though. Did some work on compiling those serial numbers for the cheaper lines a while ago.

Re: Question about the eq controls on the Fly Bass

Posted: Wed Dec 01, 2021 5:20 pm
by vjmanzo
Yes, of course, I totally remember you and the great work you did deciphering the serials! I assumed you were new to the Fly Bass—hence the welcome. 😉

That’s a good question—I always assumed they were boost only; lemme check mine and see what I come up with. I definitely don’t have a detent on mine (only the piezo).

Re: Question about the eq controls on the Fly Bass

Posted: Wed Dec 01, 2021 7:51 pm
by vjmanzo
For posterity's sake, we're referring to what the FB-4 manual refers to as the "Stacked Magnetic Tone Controls":
Screen Shot 2021-12-01 at 7.46.31 PM.png
There's no explicit mention to it in the manual, but the upper knob seems like a low-pass filter that cuts the high frequencies when lowered, and the lower of the two knobs seems like a high-pass-filter that cuts the low frequencies when lowered. So, it seems like having both knobs turned fully clockwise will give you the magnetic pickup blend without any EQ cuts applied.

Re: Question about the eq controls on the Fly Bass

Posted: Thu Dec 02, 2021 2:45 pm
by MrWalker
vjmanzo wrote: Wed Dec 01, 2021 5:20 pm Yes, of course, I totally remember you and the great work you did deciphering the serials! I assumed you were new to the Fly Bass—hence the welcome. 😉
AH, yes, good point 😂 thanks!!!
In fact, I have been a Parker fan since seeing Steve Swallow in the early 90s. Was drooling over the "soon-to-be released Fly Bass" that never made it to the market. Got a PB41 in the early 2000, but realized that it was just a teaser. But didn't manage to secure a "real-deal" Fly Bass 5 until about two years ago. And it quickly became one one of my favorite basses. I had to get a Fly guitar since I love the design... And I also got a PB51 recently from a friend. So I guess I'm hooked 😂

Re: Question about the eq controls on the Fly Bass

Posted: Thu Dec 02, 2021 3:02 pm
by MrWalker
vjmanzo wrote: Wed Dec 01, 2021 7:51 pm For posterity's sake, we're referring to what the FB-4 manual refers to as the "Stacked Magnetic Tone Controls":
Correct 😊
Could be you're right. I guess it should be possible to test as doing both anti-clockwise should make the sound very different than for a regular cut/boost preamp. Will see if I can verify.

Thanks!

I still think it's a bit strange that there is no center detent on the magnetic blend pot. But Parkers was never conventional, so why should they start with the Fly Bass? 😉

Re: Question about the eq controls on the Fly Bass

Posted: Thu Dec 02, 2021 3:38 pm
by MrWalker
vjmanzo wrote: Wed Dec 01, 2021 7:51 pm There's no explicit mention to it in the manual, but the upper knob seems like a low-pass filter that cuts the high frequencies when lowered, and the lower of the two knobs seems like a high-pass-filter that cuts the low frequencies when lowered. So, it seems like having both knobs turned fully clockwise will give you the magnetic pickup blend without any EQ cuts applied.
I think this is correct! Just tested my FB, and it's quite apparent that there's frequency cutting going on, without the volume increase/decrease normally associated with regular cut/boost preamp. I don't understand why they didn't document this, though. I think it's a pretty nice feature!
In mostly using this bass for jazz in smaller settings instead of an upright and use only the piezo pickup for the most part. So haven't studied the magnetic tone controls that closely.

Re: Question about the eq controls on the Fly Bass

Posted: Fri Dec 03, 2021 1:23 am
by vjmanzo
MrWalker wrote: Thu Dec 02, 2021 3:38 pm …use only the piezo pickup for the most part.
How great/useful is that piezo, right?!

The blend control for the magnetic pickups was an interesting design decision—I didn’t really get the practicality of it at first, but now it’s actually one of my favorite features!

Re: Question about the eq controls on the Fly Bass

Posted: Fri Dec 03, 2021 1:38 am
by MrWalker
vjmanzo wrote: Fri Dec 03, 2021 1:23 am
MrWalker wrote: Thu Dec 02, 2021 3:38 pm …use only the piezo pickup for the most part.
How great/useful is that piezo, right?!

The blend control for the magnetic pickups was an interesting design decision—I didn’t really get the practicality of it at first, but now it’s actually one of my favorite features!
The piezo is great! And the design with separate eq for piezo and magnetic pickups are gold! They always require different eq-settings and most other piezo implementations don't work due to this! The FB is the best piezo/magnetic solution I've seen to date.

I guess blend is more common in the bass world than in the guitar world, so bass players are more used to it. And I think it is more useful on bass than guitar. But again, the FB implementation is extremely even and well designed, with no volume difference across the sweep. It can almost be used as a tone control rather than a pure blend. I also think that they actually use one standard potmeter for it so blending is done by the electronics and not directly by the potmeter itself... Most other blends are a dual volume potmeter.

Again, Ken and Larry show their ingenuity.

Re: Question about the eq controls on the Fly Bass

Posted: Fri Dec 03, 2021 2:03 am
by vjmanzo
MrWalker wrote: Fri Dec 03, 2021 1:38 am Again, Ken and Larry show their ingenuity.
I’ll second that!