Hey Willis, Noticed you use the VB-99 System with the GK-3B Midi Pickup on your Bass. Recently bought the GWB35 which is an excellent bass, and perfect for those who want to make the move from fretted to fretless. My question is regarding space when installing the Midi Pickup (thinking of buying the setup for some home recording) as shown in some of your Masterclass Videos. Is it not a bit too close to the Tone Controls? Thanks and Regards, Paul
Before I had the Graphtek Ghost system integrated into the bass, I used the GK-3B. One very common misconception is that the GK-3B is not a MIDI pickup. The VB-99 does have the option for MIDI out but what makes the system almost latency-free is that it processes each string individually and sends the separate signals through 2 parallel effects chains that you can reorder and mix however you want.
To cleanly install the GK-3B on the GWB35 without making any permanent modifications to the bass requires that you sacrifice the volume knob. The first install that I did on my GWB1005 was similar but there I sacrificed the tone controls on that one. Since the purpose is to use the V-Bass or VB-99 system, you’ll most likely be using the volume pedal on the floor for volume control so it makes more sense to me now to sacrifice the volume control.
By sacrifice, I mean remove the knob and park the volume control (set at full volume) inside the cavity. Feel free to sacrifice whichever control you don’t think you’ll need to access the least. Since it’s not a permanent modification, you can always change which control gets removed.
Roland does a great job of providing pretty much all you can think of to get the GK-3B installed, including a bulky metal clamp system that you could use as a last resort. Here, the particular install that I recommend requires a few extra parts. Here’s what you’ll need:
1. a 5/8″ – 20mm washer with a small hole (smaller than the nut that you use)
2. a flat head bolt – max 1/8″ – 3mm dia. shaft and maximum 1/4″ – 5mm dia. head
4. lock washer
If you don’t have easy access to a well-stocked hardware store I’d be glad to stick these 4 items in the
mail. Just let me know.
(photo updated: changed the angle to allow easier cable access)
After removing the volume control, use the hole in the GK-3B that sits at the entrance of the 13-pin connector for the bolt and thread it through the hole in the bass left vacant by the volume control.. This shows the angle of the GK-3B in relation to the pickup. Also add some double sided-tape to the underside of the GK-3B to help stabilize it. Its proximity to the Ibanez pickup helps hold the GK pickup cable down and out of the way.
Notice I cut down the edge of the paddle that switches GK-MIX-BASS. I always leave it on MIX and didn’t like it getting bumped out of position all the time getting in and out of a gig bag.
The inside cavity with the washer, lock washer and nut fastened. The retired volume control is next to it.
Here’s the (updated) finished installation with the pickup attached with double-sided tape.
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