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Wierd Para DI power issue

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  • Wierd Para DI power issue

    My Para DI isn't working with battery when plugged into a sound board. This happened at a gig last week and again with my own PA. I've replaced the batteries - flipped them etc - but doesn't power up except with phantom power.

    Now, to deepen the mystery: it did power up when plugged into the XLR port on a Fender Acoustisonic amp, but not when plugged into the XLR port of my Ibenez Troubadour.

    The pick-up works ok through a passive DI and when plugged directly into an amp, but it's quiet. It needs the gain and tone control of the Para DI.

    I'm using an EMG ACB-5 magnetic banjo pickup. I've only had the pickup for a short time, and last week was the first time I paired it with the Baggs. I've had the DI for years and it was working fine until now.

    Any suggestions?

  • #2
    Hey Rollingwolf,
    That's a pretty odd set of symptoms. It is possible that part of the circuitry surrounding the battery has gone bad. That would explain why the unit only runs on Phantom Power. It could also be a bad physical connection from the battery to the board, but it's hard to say for sure. You may be able to visually inspect the inside of the battery cavity to see if either of the battery tabs are broken or bent back.

    I haven't been able to locate any specs on the Ibanez Troubadour to determine if it actually supplies enough voltage to power the DI. There may be a simple explanation for why the Ibanez didn't power the DI, but the Fender did.

    Whatever the case may actually be, if you are not able to locate a physical disconnect between the battery and the DI, I would be happy to take a look at your DI if you want to send it in. For an older DI, we actually have a flat-rate repair fee that applies to most repairs. You can email me at [email protected] for more information.


    • #3
      Thanks, but I actually think it might be the pickup, not the DI. I found another DI in my studio (a "Red-eye") that has phantom or 9v and it had the same issue. It makes no sense to me how the pick up could effect the power source of the DI and this issue is new because I used the Red-Eye at gig when I first got this pick up. Have you ever heard of anything like this?


      • #4
        Are you using a standard unbalanced instrument cable to go from your Banjo to the DI? Or are you using a stereo/balanced cable?

        A stereo/balanced cable would transmit the signal from the Banjo, but it would not turn the DI on if the unit was not receiving Phantom Power. Phantom Power will turn the DI on even if the input is not connected. If you are running on a battery, only an unbalanced cable will turn the DI on.


        • #5
          Yeah, it's a standard guitar cable. I tried a few different ones. Also it's not the pickup because I'm getting the same issue with another pickup.
          Both pickups and cables work going through a passive Radial Pro DI into the soundboard, or into the sound board through the Baggs with phantom on only.
          I realize that the reason the fender works is because it has phantom power. I assume the Ibenez doesn't.
          I'm stumped.


          • #6
            I mentioned before that I have seen one or two cases where the battery power circuitry has gone bad. It's by no means a common issue, but I think that it would have to be that or a bad physical connection. Those are the only things that I can think of that would explain this set of issues (since you've already tried new batteries).

            If you want to talk about sending your DI in, shoot me an email.


            • #7
              Hey, I solved the problem! It was a bad battery. Even though I switched it before with the 'fresh battery' in my case, and the battery in my other pre, it turns out all 3 were dead. Bought some new batteries and everything works fine.
              Thanks for your trouble shooting!


              • #8

                Batteries can be tricky like that. I've done that same thing myself, all too many times.

                All the best!