11 December 2015
Which Warwick Rockbass Streamer Standard 4 or 5 to buy/avoid and why! Part 1
What a title ei? but its what I discovered in mid February this year.I think I've waited long enough for the solution that never came.The story goes like this.
I was asked to check the model above.The owner is a professional bass player and own several flagship basses.The owner said it isn't outputting enough compared to his other passive basses.The Rockbass was the least played bass in his collection but he just had to get it fix.To begin with,This is not a cheap(under RM1k) bass to be ignored of the expected attention.
I check the electronics and found all pots to be 25k...yes that's right Twety Five KiloOhms.So I thought the factory installed the wrong pots.This happens elsewhere too.Human error is normal.So I wired the pickups bypassing the electronics straight to the amp,just in case.The tone is still ridiculously low.I borrowed a passive SX Jazz Bass to compare.The Rockbass sounded soft as whisper while the SX tone were thunderous as thunder!.Motherfloodpucker...did my client got conned by China and the Germans? But I'm sure there's a good explanation for this.I'll emailed Warwick to hear their response and on 2nd March I did.
And the quick response came.From the company Vice President herself.
I measured the pickups and both gave reading around 1.6k yes that's right One point Six KiloOhms.That's the lowest reading I'd encountered in my short 15 tech years(5 more to go,should I live that long or move to another country.Haha).Its a reading of a busted pickups if you ask me.Back to their letter and it says."Please note that the output is very as they are Vintage voiced Pickups with very low output.So they it should be OK"
Dear Mrs Wilfer,What exactly do you mean by vintage,low and okay?What and whose vintage are you talking about here.Anything that predates your company existence? In Germany?In the world?Alright let's go as far back when Fender introduced the first electric bass(P-Bass) in 1950.Did they rewind their pickups to 1.6kilofuckingohms? or are you applying the spec of a much earlier pickup that of George Beauchamp 1931 Frying Pan guitar.? No Sir,as far as I see it,this is far from okay.First its the wrong pots(easily corrected) then flawed pickups??!!Do you accept returns?Should my/your client/buyer buy another set of pickups?What company makes these size?..Oh wait..MEC right.They supply you these faulty pickups in the first place right.Should my/your client/buyer visit your dealer,take the bass by it's head,hurl it over the counter and shout WAAAAAARR-WICK!!!!
The next day I went to MEC site leaving my enquiry(twice this year with no reply) about the pickup DC Resistance plus registering myself in bass forums particularly Warwick's(now known as Bass Arena )Its been a while since I joined forums but I'm fully aware about the helpful,the trolls and another Rockbass owner with pickups DC Resistance of 1k?,yes that's One KilofuckingOhms.You mean there's more out there with this flaw? I'm sure there are and better check yours to be sure.Who knows.perhaps there's 500ohms version out there too? For that Vintage Voiced Stone Aged output?
Oh by the way,them 25k pots I told you readers about earlier.Its not a mistake,its stock and standard as shown on the official schematic below.Now you partially know why the Rockbass sounds weaker than the real Wick.Hehe.Some(passive) bass maker intentionally changed the pots(250k to 500k) but not shorting/ruining the pickups DC Resistance in order to change the tone compared to its higher tier,but what Warwick does to their Rockbass Streamer line is sickening to say the least.Did it ever occur to Warwick about how many sales they may have lost in any music store that has more than just Wick to offer.Simple silly and unprofessional.Any Sub RM2k or even 1k Squier,LTD,GIO or even SX would shake the crap out of this Rockbass.From the visit count to this blog,I can guarantee you not a lot,maybe 5 potential buyers?.Haha.Enough said.. Puih!!!
Well how do we buy the right one yustech?Tell us!! My bonus is around the corner you know!
In part II,I will show you how to choose the right Rockbass Streamer 4/5 by using a tool(or bringing along a person that has that tool) before parting away your hard earned money.You won't believe what came in two week after this bass was done(what I tried to improve its output).
Pissed with Warwick or MEC?