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StageBug SB-4™ FAQ

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Do I need an external power supply or battery to make it work?

No. The StageBug SB-4 derives its power from the 48V phantom power that is commonly found in all PA systems. Simply turn on the phantom power at the mixer and the SB-4 will automatically turn on when plugged in.

Can I harm the StageBug SB-4 by leaving it plugged in?

No. It will sit idle when not in use.

How does the StageBug SB-4 compare to the SB-1?

They are very similar. The SB-1's input is configured for passive and active acoustic guitars and basses while the SB-4 is configured for piezos. They can be interchanged in a pinch, but they will not sound as good as when used for their designated purpose.

Can I use the StageBug SB-4 on electric bass?

Yes. You may find the tone to be a bit bright due to the high input impedance. If using an active bass, make sure you keep your level down to prevent overloading the SB-4's more sensitive input.

Can I use the StageBug SB-4 with a magnetic pickup on an acoustic guitar?

Yes. Although magnetic pickups do not require as high an input impedance as a piezo, it will work just fine. You may sound brighter than you like, but this is easily compensated for at the mixer.

How long of a cable can I use with the StageBug SB-4?

On the input side, try to keep the instrument cable as short as possible. This helps eliminate noise caused by induction and radio waves. Cables less than 6 meters (20') are preferable. As for the output side going to thePA mixer, you can easily extend this to 100 meters (300') without a problem. This is what DI boxes do!

Is the StageBug SB-4 a good choice for a vintage acoustic instrument?

Yes. Vintage guitars do not lose their value by having a combination 'connector strap-pin' and an internal piezo attached. This set-up works great with an SB-4. Your local guitar shop will have a tech that can assist you on this installation. Best of all, you do not need a battery inside the guitar!

I heard that lifting the ground on a 48V active DI cuts off the power. Is this true?

Normally yes... but with the SB-4, we employ a virtual ground lift scheme that enables the 48 volt DC power to pass while eliminating 95% of the ground contamination noise.

Can I use a battery to power the StageBug SB-4?

No. Power is derived from 48V phantom.

Can I use the SB-4's AUX output to feed a guitar processor or pedal?

Yes. The auxiliary out is buffered so that it can drive a pedal without affecting the piezo optimized input.

If I don´t have a PA and just want to run the SB-4 in my amp, will it work?

Yes, but you will need an external phantom supply like the Radial SB-48 for powering. Simply use the THRU (Aux) output to feed your stage amp. The SB-4 will correct the impedance for your pickup for great sounding results!

What is the current draw on the SB-4? I would like to power it via the XLR Phantom Power on my Trace Elliot TA100 which has a maximum current draw of 250 mA.

Phantom power is typically 48 volts with 5 to 10 milliamps of current. The SB4 (like all Radial products) is made to work within this range. The actual draw is 4 milliamps. Sounds like your TA amp is more than adequate!