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Guitar Pick up advise please

GUEST,Colin Holt 18 Jan 11 - 06:38 AM
mrmoe 18 Jan 11 - 07:28 AM
Backwoodsman 18 Jan 11 - 07:31 AM
Richard Bridge 18 Jan 11 - 08:22 AM
theleveller 18 Jan 11 - 08:42 AM
Bobert 18 Jan 11 - 08:46 AM
Backwoodsman 18 Jan 11 - 09:31 AM
Backwoodsman 18 Jan 11 - 09:35 AM
Backwoodsman 18 Jan 11 - 09:37 AM
GUEST,colin holt 18 Jan 11 - 11:32 AM
Bobert 18 Jan 11 - 11:35 AM
DonMeixner 18 Jan 11 - 12:09 PM
Backwoodsman 18 Jan 11 - 12:14 PM
Zen 18 Jan 11 - 01:56 PM
Bobert 18 Jan 11 - 02:32 PM
Backwoodsman 18 Jan 11 - 02:43 PM
DonMeixner 18 Jan 11 - 03:26 PM
Bobert 18 Jan 11 - 07:48 PM
GUEST,Bernie 18 Jan 11 - 09:37 PM
Backwoodsman 19 Jan 11 - 04:42 AM
Richard Bridge 19 Jan 11 - 12:02 PM
Backwoodsman 20 Jan 11 - 03:33 AM
GUEST,Ralphie 20 Jan 11 - 03:47 AM
Richard Bridge 20 Jan 11 - 04:01 AM
Backwoodsman 20 Jan 11 - 04:54 AM
DonMeixner 20 Jan 11 - 01:58 PM
GUEST,CN 20 Jan 11 - 08:58 PM
GUEST,jeff 21 Jan 11 - 09:10 AM
GUEST,erbert 21 Jan 11 - 11:48 AM
Phil Cooper 22 Jan 11 - 07:54 AM
GUEST,colin holt 25 Jan 11 - 08:49 AM
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Subject: Guitar Pick up advise please
From: GUEST,Colin Holt
Date: 18 Jan 11 - 06:38 AM

Hello all
I'm looking to put a pick up in my Martin 00028 EC, which I specifically use for open tuning work, and thinking about the options.
I'm currently thinking of a passive undersaddle transducer maybe a fishman, or a LR Baggs Beam passive, as I don't want to deal with soundhole pick ups, batteries, or changing the acoustic sound without amplification.(Thinking of an outboard DI box to go with it)
Does anyone have experience of any of these systems, or any advice to give.
Thanks


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Subject: RE: Guitar Pick up advise please
From: mrmoe
Date: 18 Jan 11 - 07:28 AM

I've been very happy with K&K Western pickups in my guitars.....it's a 3 transducer system attached to the bridge plate and does not tend to "quack" like a ust pickup....


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Subject: RE: Guitar Pick up advise please
From: Backwoodsman
Date: 18 Jan 11 - 07:31 AM

Ditto on the K&K Western (now called the Pure Mini). Very 'acoustic'-sounding. I have three - two in Martins and one in my Lowden.

K&K Pure Mini


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Subject: RE: Guitar Pick up advise please
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 18 Jan 11 - 08:22 AM

I haven't tried the K&K, but if it does not feed back like mad it'll be the first contact pickup ever not to do so. I also find that contacts sound a bit thin and lacking in round bottom so are not good (to my ears) for open tunings - but I do like a big roar and your ears may differ.

I-Beams sound nice and round but tend to feed (and have batteries).

Headway snakes sound nice, but have batteries and will require change to the saddle slot.

B-Bands sound quite natural (maybe a smidgeon of B-emphasis) and are so thin that it may not be necessary to modify the saddle slot but have batteries.


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Subject: RE: Guitar Pick up advise please
From: theleveller
Date: 18 Jan 11 - 08:42 AM

K&Ks get rave reviews, especially from guitar makers. There are several on ebay at the moment (thinking about buying one myself for my Lowden).

Got a Headway Snake on my Fylde cittern and it's OK but not needs some EQing.


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Subject: RE: Guitar Pick up advise please
From: Bobert
Date: 18 Jan 11 - 08:46 AM

Martin makes an excellent pickup... I had one put in my old D-18 and it sounds every bit as good as the Fishman that is in my Washburn resonator guitar... Oh, and BTW, I play open tunings also...

B~


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Subject: RE: Guitar Pick up advise please
From: Backwoodsman
Date: 18 Jan 11 - 09:31 AM

The K&K is absolutely not lacking in the bass in any way, shape or form, in fact it is an extremely rich and natural-sounding pickup. Feedback is not an issue for me - I use mine either through my Roland AC-60 acoustic amp, or direct through the PA. Either way, some EQ-ing and judicious use of the notch filter removes any feedback issues that occasionally arise (and USTs feed back too, given the right circumstances - it's a fact of plugged-in life for an acoustic guitar).

The only thing to be careful of with the K&K is input impedance issues - the usual I/E of preamps such as the Baggs Para-DI is 10 Megohm, whereas the K&K requires 1 Megohm. If you have such a mis-match, the resulting sound can be thin and unsatisfactory (which may be where you got that impression from, Richard?). I use an Orchid active DI-box which has an input impedance of 1 Megohm, spot-on for the K&K, and I've never heard a better amplified acoustic sound.


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Subject: RE: Guitar Pick up advise please
From: Backwoodsman
Date: 18 Jan 11 - 09:35 AM

K&K make an external pre-amp with EQ for the Pure Mini, correct impedance and great sound. But if you have EQ on your amp, or can trust your sound-man with EQ on the PA, a pre-amp's unnecessary - just use an active DI (such as the Orchid) which has an input impedance of 1 Megohm, the K&K Pure Mini puts out a very hot signal, and makes a pre-amp unnecessary in most circumstances.


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Subject: RE: Guitar Pick up advise please
From: Backwoodsman
Date: 18 Jan 11 - 09:37 AM

And another beauty of the K&K is that it's passive - no sodding battery in the guitar to leak, or add weight, or be a PITA to change! :-)


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Subject: RE: Guitar Pick up advise please
From: GUEST,colin holt
Date: 18 Jan 11 - 11:32 AM

Thanks folks

Thanks Backwoodsman.. never heard of K&K.. I'll do a bit more research now


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Subject: RE: Guitar Pick up advise please
From: Bobert
Date: 18 Jan 11 - 11:35 AM

Check out the Fishman, too... They have pre-amp and lotta country and bluegrass geetar picker swear by 'um... Easy install in a Martin, too...

B~


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Subject: RE: Guitar Pick up advise please
From: DonMeixner
Date: 18 Jan 11 - 12:09 PM

I use a Fishman under the saddle transducer in my Guild F 30. About 20 yuears old. (THe pick up, not the guitar) About the same size as a 00-28. If I play straight into a PA it quacks something terrible. If I use a pre amp like my Baggs Para DI it sounds very nice indeed. (This shouldn't be rocket surgery, use a pre-amp on ant transducer or they sound like hell) It sounds great acoustically when just a mic is in use. I have a Pick Up The World on my 'zook. Same story, use a good pre amp.

Don


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Subject: RE: Guitar Pick up advise please
From: Backwoodsman
Date: 18 Jan 11 - 12:14 PM

I had Fishmans in my guitars. Ripped 'em all out and installed K&K's when I heard the improvement a K&K made. Another benefit of the K&K over a UST is that there's no strip inserted between the saddle and the bottom of the slot, so no farting around sanding the saddle down, and no degradation of the acoustic tone of the instrument (although in fairness, that degradation is very minimal indeed if a UST is installed properly).


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Subject: RE: Guitar Pick up advise please
From: Zen
Date: 18 Jan 11 - 01:56 PM

I have a K&K on my resonator guitar which works well. Another that I've frequently fitted to guitars and other fretted instruments and like is the PUTW (PickUpTheWorld) model 27.


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Subject: RE: Guitar Pick up advise please
From: Bobert
Date: 18 Jan 11 - 02:32 PM

"Ripped it out", backwoodsman??? Whadya use???? A crowbar???

Tell ya'll what... Paul Beard (Beard Guitars)(Google him, up) makes some of the finest custom resonators in the world...

Call him up and ask him what he thinks of Fishman pickups... BTW, tell him that Sidewalk Bob says "Hey"...

B~


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Subject: RE: Guitar Pick up advise please
From: Backwoodsman
Date: 18 Jan 11 - 02:43 PM

LOL Bobert!
There's nothing especially wrong with Fishmans, I used them for years quite happily..............UNTIL.............I heard a K&K-equipped Lowden which blew my Fishman-ised Lowden out of the water. So I did some research, and got convinced.

The first K&K I had fitted was to a then-new Martin OM-28 Marquis which has a long glued-in saddle. Using a K&K was a no-brainer there for obvious reasons. I then put one in my Lowden and I love the plugged sound. When I got the HD-28V this past year, which also has a long saddle, a K&K went straight in there.

So.....my preference for K&K doesn't mean that I'm rubbishing Fishmans - they're fine if you want a UST - it's just that I prefer the less-invasive, more 'natural' sounding (IMHO!) K&K.

But it's each to his own I guess!
Cheers now.


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Subject: RE: Guitar Pick up advise please
From: DonMeixner
Date: 18 Jan 11 - 03:26 PM

I am not sold on Fishman's or K and K which I have and like. My point is use a damn pre amp of decent quality or you won't be happy with any transduced sound.

PUTW is the only pick up I have ever used on my banjo where I was pleased with the sound. Pre amp it and mid out all the levels on the equalizer and it sounds like a banjo through a microphone.

D


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Subject: RE: Guitar Pick up advise please
From: Bobert
Date: 18 Jan 11 - 07:48 PM

Absolutely right, Don-M...


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Subject: RE: Guitar Pick up advise please
From: GUEST,Bernie
Date: 18 Jan 11 - 09:37 PM

I used various Fishman's years ago,which required,saddle modifications,often resulting action problems[possibly due to careless installation].....sound was OK,but just...these were all on Martin dreadnaughts...went to LR Baggs I-Beams when I started to play small bodied Martins[OM 21/OM28/OM35/00016SGT]....pretty much perfect acoustic sound,to my ears,plus many favourable comments from audience members....I know very little about the technology;these were recommended by a reputable dealer;I'll probably never be looking at any other kind....for what it's worth....


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Subject: RE: Guitar Pick up advise please
From: Backwoodsman
Date: 19 Jan 11 - 04:42 AM

"My point is use a damn pre amp of decent quality or you won't be happy with any transduced sound"

Yep, got that point Don.
My experience with K&K's is that, provided you have a good active DI box with the correct input impedance (i.e. 1 Megohm), a pre-amp isn't essential - you can use one if that's your wish, but it's not essential.
My experience also, using the K&K with my Baggs Para-DI, was that it actually caused a signal drop and removed bass, thus reducing volume and making the sound very thin - a result of the mis-match in impedances, the 1 Megohm of the K&K vs. the 10 Meg of the Baggs. I would strongly recommend using the K&K outboard pre-amp to anyone who felt that they needed a pre-amp, although I don't use one, I just have the Orchid active DI (which is a very classy piece of kit) and I'm more than happy with the sound I get whether it be through my Roland amp or direct through the PA (and also with the compliments I get from audients about the great sound of my guitars).


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Subject: RE: Guitar Pick up advise please
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 19 Jan 11 - 12:02 PM

I'm surprised by the assertion that too high an input impedance causes problems - it's usually that too low an input impedance does.

I have however, noticed that the more things you can twiddle with on an outboard pre-amp, the greater the chance of getting it wrong!


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Subject: RE: Guitar Pick up advise please
From: Backwoodsman
Date: 20 Jan 11 - 03:33 AM

Richard, it's the mis-match between the pickup and pre-amp impedances that causes problems. A UST usually has a 10 Megohm load which matches the input impedance of most pre-amps. The K&K is 1 Megohm - a mis-match by a factor of 10. If you solder a 1 Megohm resistor across the terminals in one of the jacks on your guitar lead, that will correct the mis-match and improve the performance.

Or, alternatively (the best alternative, IMHO), you can use a dedicated pre-amp with a 1 Megohm input impedance, such as K&K's own product or, as I do, use an active DI box (which, after all, is just a pre-amp without any knobs) with a 1 Megohm input impedance such as the Orchid (which ties in with your second point!).


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Subject: RE: Guitar Pick up advise please
From: GUEST,Ralphie
Date: 20 Jan 11 - 03:47 AM

I have the Fishman Dual system fitted to all my instruments. Coupled with the "Raven" pre-amp. (splits the mic and the transducer into two seperate feeds that you can mix to your hearts content!) As recommended by Martin Simpson! (that is one hell of a recommendation!)
Bloody expensive though!


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Subject: RE: Guitar Pick up advise please
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 20 Jan 11 - 04:01 AM

Yes, I understand the concept of impedance mismatch, but never before have I heard of excessive input impedance being a problem like this (although I accept that whacking a 600 ohm mic into a 10K ohm mic input will result in low volume). A thin and brittle sound from a pickup is often caused by putting a 100K ohm pickup into a 10k mic input - but one never had the problem with old valve PA heads the input impedances of which were a megohm or more.

The conventional wisdom was the higher the input impedance (for undersaddle or stick on pickups) the better and indeed the Baggs website specifically asserts that the 10megohm input impedance delivers teh best sound for all pickups.

I don't understand how a high impedance could rob bass or create a thinner sound.


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Subject: RE: Guitar Pick up advise please
From: Backwoodsman
Date: 20 Jan 11 - 04:54 AM

Well I don't understand it either - I'm a full-time accountant and part-time singer/guitarist/mandolin player, not an electronics Graduate, FFS! But I have it on good authority from someone who does understand electronics that its the case, and it was certainly the case when I tried using a Baggs Para-DI with my K&K's. Not successful at all, not to my ears, so I sold it to a pal who has UST's in his guitars. However, K&K produce a matched pre-amp that works superbly with their pickups (as you would expect).

Ralphie - I'm quite well-acquainted with Martin's gear, and you're right that he has an awesome sound (not to mention the fact that he's a mind-boggling player, and I say that from the unenviable position of someone who had to follow him on at an event a few years ago!). But it comes at quite a cost (and I guess you know all about that, as you have the same gear!). I'll have to satisfy myself with K&K's and an Orchid DI box - my bank account insists that it's so! :-)


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Subject: RE: Guitar Pick up advise please
From: DonMeixner
Date: 20 Jan 11 - 01:58 PM

K and K has a propriatry pre-amp but it is still a pre-amp. It alters the signal from the pick up and creates a better sound OR a signal that the sound system can manage.

I have played a lot of venues with a sound guy present who has tried to take a signal right off the guitar or banjo and run straight into the board. The complaint has always been of a dry tinny sound with no bottom or volume. Put a pre-am in the mix and suddenly the sound guy had a signal he could work with.

And this is true also with my basic 8 channel PV powered mixer when I do the sound my self.

I don't disagree that K and K pick ups excellent pick ups. As long as they are matched to the system they drive they are a fine pick up and to match the system you need a pre-amp that fits the signal it is given. I'll even accept the fact that a Baggs Para DI doesn't work on everything.

D


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Subject: RE: Guitar Pick up advise please
From: GUEST,CN
Date: 20 Jan 11 - 08:58 PM

Another vote from me for the K&K. If you decide to go down that route talk to Jon Press - www.jp-guitars.co.uk - who keeps a wide variety in stock. He's very experienced at fitting them too. Tell him I sent you and he'll charge you double!


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Subject: RE: Guitar Pick up advise please
From: GUEST,jeff
Date: 21 Jan 11 - 09:10 AM

In my mandolin I've got a K & K system. It works well using a Boss Bass eq then to a passive Whirlwind di ahead of everything to a given mixer. No battery required.

For my guitar I've got an older LR Baggs out of a Seagull guitar along w/a Joe Mills mic w/a separate volume control run through the Baggs volume/eq. combo. A 9v battery is required. Also, to a Whirlwind di.

Also, I've got a 12-string Takamine 'Logo Era' w/a stock pick-up. If I use the 3 together I run them all thru small Mackie mixer. It has separate 3 eq pots per channel.

It takes time to set it all up, but once it's dialed in it's a great combination.


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Subject: RE: Guitar Pick up advise please
From: GUEST,erbert
Date: 21 Jan 11 - 11:48 AM

.. just a reminder about Award-Session's versatile & affordable preamps.


"AP10-2 Electro-Acoustic Preamp" [formerly: GG10 Gordon Giltrap endorsed]


"MixMatch™ FOUR CHANNEL COMBINED[mini]MIXER/DIRECT BOX"


"FEATURES ... Mega-Z ultra high impedance inputs which removes the worries about impedance matching.
The MM4 can work with any type of microphone, transducer or other signal sources from pre-amps, radios,
CD players, etc.
Originally developed for use with piezo and magnetic guitar or bass pickups, MM4 is the simple no-nonsense answer.
Mega-Z eliminates the tone and volume losses common with conventional mixers.
As fitted to the popular Gordon Giltrap(GG10) preamp."


http://www.award-session.com/


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Subject: RE: Guitar Pick up advise please
From: Phil Cooper
Date: 22 Jan 11 - 07:54 AM

I've liked the highlander SA internal mics I had put on my guitars four years ago.


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Subject: RE: Guitar Pick up advise please
From: GUEST,colin holt
Date: 25 Jan 11 - 08:49 AM

Thanks to all out there for advice etc..... Much food for thought


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