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Pickups for Upright BassPickup/Preamp Packages

K&K Sound Bass Master Rockabilly PLUS Upright Bass Pickup System

         Manufactured by: K&K Sound

Continental US - larger items may carry a partial shipping charge to AK, HI and PR
You've got options! Click the drop-down to choose (prices starting at $299.00)
-- Select Individual Components for the K&K Sound Bass Master Rockabilly System

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(Note that larger items may carry a partial shipping charge to AK, HI and PR.)
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"Rockabilly/Country Slap Special"
Bass Master RB PLUS

Double Bass Pickup — The PLUS model is the latest K&K Rockabilly Pickup system

Do you already have a "main" pickup that you like, but want to add the Rockabilly "Clicky" pickup and blending preamp to it? Check out the new "Rockabilly Upgrade Kit" - all the stuff you'll need in one pre-configured package!
Back in 1998 I talked with a lot of Rockabilly players about helping them to get THE SOUND. There was nothing out there that could deliver both a strong, feedback-resistant bass signal AND that retro or psychobilly-style fingerboard slap sound. Everybody had all kinds of stuff, expensive bits and lots of wires hanging off their basses trying to get the sound.

As a longtime bassist myself, I concentrated on coming up with an "out of the box" solution, and came up with a concept for a new pickup system using K&K Sound's compact two channel preamp and excellent transducers. Dieter Kaudel of K&K Sound responded with prototypes, and we came up with the first pickup system specifically created to serve the need of Rockabilly, Country, Bluegrass, and even Jazz players who need to convey the slap and other fingerboard sounds -- complete with commanding bass signal. This custom creation combines the strong, established Bass Max wing pickup with a unique fingerboard transducer, letting you EQ them separately and mix their output using a tiny two-channel preamp.

  • The first component is the Bass Max wing transducer, for a powerful and distinct bass voice, with plenty of mids to cut through the mix.

  • Your fingerboard slap is distinctly delivered by a purpose-built transducer, designed to be taped to the back side of your fingerboard near the top neck joint. This specially-shaped full range pickup can fit flush into the curvature and will capture as much of those percussive and warm sounds as you like. As I experimented with our prototypes, I found fascinating differences in tonal responses and resonances depending on the location of the transducer; tonal variations were apparent when placing the pickup above, at the edge, and below the area where the back of the fingerboard transitions from straight to scooped out. Extra tape is provided so you can experiment, and achieve exactly the type of response you want - from that Bill Black click to a fat thunk. Complete instructions and advice are included to help you find your own personal sweet spot! Once in place, a length of cable runs down the back of your fingerboard, through a piece of foam in the center of your bridge, joining the Bass Max at a three-conductor output jack held between a pair of strings.

  • A high quality five-foot three-conductor cable is provided to convey the individual signals of each pickup to the preamp.

  • The special Two Channel Preamp (included) has a belt clip, for easy availability and balancing on the job, and it measures a mere 3.5 x 2.9 x 1.3 inches. Some guys even attach theirs to the bass' tailpiece along with their wireless! (see mounting kit below) This tiny 10 ounce preamp has separate bass, midrange, treble, and gain trimmers on the inside for each channel, with volume controls on the outside. This lets you fine tune the nature of the response you want from each pickup, and then dial in just the right balance of bass signal and slap sounds. The special output options let you blend the two transducers to one output, or send the EQ'd and matched signals to separate outputs for independent external effecting or multiple amps. (See below for details).

The specialized preamp expands your output options; when you use the regular output jack, both the Bass and Slap transducers are mixed to that single output. However, when you plug a second 1/4" cable into the center jack, the Bass pickup emerges from one and the Slap from the other, allowing you to send the slap to another device, like guitar amp with reverb for special effects, to the PA board, or another amp... whatever you like. Here are examples:
Option #1 - the preamp acts as a blender, with two completely separate sets of bass, midrange, and treble controls, and volume controls for mixing the Bridge Bass transducer and the Fingerboard Slap pickup sounds. The mono output on the left goes to your amp, PA, etc.
Option #2 - the preamp acts as a stereo preamp, with two completely separate sets of bass, midrange, and treble controls, and volume controls, with separate outputs for the Bridge Bass transducer and the Fingerboard Slap pickup. Back in the day, before such systems existed, players would use two separate pickups, one for the bass sound and a second transducer or mic for the fingerboard slap sound. Since few bass amps have two channels, they'd often use a second, smaller guitar-type amp with reverb for the slap alone, or send it to the PA. You can emulate this, or if you want, send the separate bass and slap signals to a PA board where your PA tech can balance the two.

Bass Master Rockabilly PLUS
Complete instructions are included to help you optimize the pickup system to best suit your personal style. This is the Bass Master Rockabilly PLUS system.

The original "Bass Master Rockabilly System" with the two channel EQ and single output has been discontinued by K&K Sound.

Note: If you play styles other than Rockabilly, I'd recommend the Bass Master Pro rather than this dedicated system- it will give you slap as well as a wider range of tonal character for other types of music. Bob

Product Options:

The Bass Master Rockabilly PLUS Pickup System includes the Bass Max and Rockabilly transducer set wired to a stereo string-mount jack, a six-foot stereo (TRS) cable, and the K&K two channel preamplifier with volume, overall gain, tone controls for each channel, and mixed output.

The Transducer Network includes only the pickups, wired to a single TRS string-mount jack; if you already have a Dual Channel Pro ST preamp, or another preamp (like the DTAR Solstice, K&K Sound Quantum Blender, or Raven Labs preamp) you can purchase the pickups without having to buy an "extra" preamp. It can be purchased by clicking the blue box near the top of the page - options are provided there for purchasing "non-standard" configurations.

You can also "upgrade" the preamplifier that comes with the Bass Master Rockabilly PLUS:
  • The Radial Engineering PZ-Pre is a powerful and flexible acoustic preamplifier, built into a heavy-duty floor pedal unit. Featuring a parametric EQ, notch filter, high-pass filter, phase revers, mute switch, effects loop and more! Multiple outputs make it a flexible performer, and it is built like a tank.
  • The DTAR Solstice is a high quality and extremely versatile two channel preamp mixer, brought to you by the collaboration of Rick Turner and Seymour Duncan. Its broad feature set allows you to blend virtually any type of sound source. The low-noise hybrid circuitry and internally adjustable gain from 0 to 24db make it suitable for both live and studio use.

This item is made in USA! Click for more

Is this product returnable? Click here for our return policy.
Is there a Factory Warranty? Click here to find Warranty Information for all of our manufacturers.
International customer? Click here for important information about ordering from outside the USA, and what to expect concerning taxes, VAT, delivery times, and more.

Check Out the FAQ Resources That Apply to This Product:
   WIRELESS: Going Wireless with Double Bass
   CABLES: Mono and Stereo (TRS)
   PICKUPS and MICROPHONES: Should I get a Pickup or a Mic?

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Some of our customers have told us what they think about this product.
Check out what they had to say!
HI Mark

just wanted to say thanks for the great product. I've been playing rockabilly and double bass since I was about 14 (and am now 40) and wish this set up had been around then... it would have made life so much easier!!!

It arrived the other day and last night I set it up. The sound is brilliant... so nice to have the slap control, and tonight I'll be testing it out properly in rehearsals ready for the weekend. The case you sent too is top quality and a great price...

The products are ace though, even with Mr.Blair steeling some extra cash off me (by way of VAT taxes) ;-)

thanks for your professional service and product... I'll be recommending it to the rest of the uk 'crew' ;-) - Cheers!
I recently bought a Double Bass pick up from you guys. I was a little leery at first and was hoping the sound was going to be good for the price I paid... All I can say is ....WoW... The sound freaking blew me away, It was probably one of the best investments I have made this year. I'm hooked, the pickups are top notch. Thank you -
Bill L.
Just two words: the first is "stunning", the second "thanks"!

The pickup arrived today, and I must say that your rockabilly double piezo and preamp really rock, it made my instrument completely renewed!! Slapping is really a pleasure again!

Really worth every cent I payed and more, I won't stop reccomending this K&K and your (already well known here) Gollihur shop!
Stefano R
Hey guys, I just wanted to let you know that I got my K&K RAB and Solstice today! They sound great together... strong fundamentals with nice transparent clicks. I put the clicky about an inch from the hollowed out part of the fingerboard (about 2 inches from where I slap) and its "THAT" sound! Love it! love it! In love with it!
Jeff Falbo
Hi Bob, I was reading at a forum where a guy was talking about changing the battery on his KK RAB Plus pre-amp and complaining about how often he had to do it. Was he being facetious? Mine goes literally months. What is the battery life on that unit supposed to be anyway? I have just changed it after 3 months so I don't run the risk of it dying in the middle of a show. I generally mute my signal chain and unplug the input cable during intermissions... Great PUP BTW. Does exactly what it's supposed to do. My hands are way less beat up now that I'm not over slapping to get my "click". Thanks, Pete
Pete 10/10/10
Got my k&k RAB (Rockabilly) setup today and wow Bob the bass max is everything you said it was and more. The adjustability of the fingerboard pickup phenomenal! Top notch buying experience thank you.
geoff b. 2/27/10
Hi Mark,

I recently purchased a K&K rockabilly plus pick up from your store online. It arrived a little over a week ago and after having spent quite a bit of time playing around with it, (actually, after the first few minutes) I just wanted to send you a quick email to let you know that I love this pick up/preamp! Great design, awesome sound.

I'm more of a multi instrumentalist, not really a full time double bassist and I'm fairly new to amplifying double bass, however, I'm picky and I know what I want to hear! Having not been quite satisfied with previous amplification attempts (an Underwood and various mics and cheap clip on mics) I've gotta say this really captures the sound of my bass, if not improves it! I'm encouraged to play more already!

I am also very impressed with your fantastic service! All the extra printouts on setting up and mounting the pick up and preamp were very helpful and it was all so very safely packaged.

As well as the lower prices and availability, (double bass resources are not always easily accessible in Australia, especially where I live out in the country) I really value and appreciate such great service, and you'll be sure to hear from me again.
Mic T (July 2011)
I recently about the K&K rockabilly pick up system for my 1944 Kay bass. I installed it a couple of days ago to be used in the production of the Million Dollar Quartet musical. I am thoroughly pleased with the sound I get from my bass. I had tried every other cheap get by system which was all very frustrating. And I was ready to sell my bass. I have already recommended the K&K system to a local recording studio. I really like what has come of this and look forward to playing more. Thank you for your quick service and detailed instructions.
Doug F. (March 2018)
Mark- I got my Bassmaster RB Plus unit yesterday (two - day delivery - Fantastic!) It sounds great. I appreciate that you go the extra mile and put in the notes on install above and beyond what K&K provides. Shows you know the product and can give great customer support. Had it temp'd in in about 10 minutes. Working on the optimum placement now before permanent install. Sounds fantastic through my SVT-3 and 6x10 cabinet. It's a great product and your company was a pleasure to work with. Thanks...
Daniel M. (August 2019)