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Help: For Guitarists (Lowden loudness)

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Durham Lad 21 Oct 99 - 02:06 PM
Jon Freeman 21 Oct 99 - 02:17 PM
Fortunato 21 Oct 99 - 02:20 PM
Durham Lad 21 Oct 99 - 02:38 PM
catspaw49 21 Oct 99 - 02:45 PM
Fortunato 21 Oct 99 - 03:11 PM
Lady McMoo 21 Oct 99 - 04:22 PM
JedMarum 21 Oct 99 - 04:41 PM
JedMarum 21 Oct 99 - 04:43 PM
Lowden Unruly 21 Oct 99 - 05:03 PM
Sam Hudson 21 Oct 99 - 05:04 PM
Rick Fielding 21 Oct 99 - 05:55 PM
catspaw49 21 Oct 99 - 08:33 PM
Rick Fielding 22 Oct 99 - 12:34 PM
Durham Lad 22 Oct 99 - 02:23 PM
Jon Freeman 22 Oct 99 - 07:32 PM
GUEST,Richard Bridge (cookie and format C) 26 Oct 02 - 06:40 PM
Leadfingers 26 Oct 02 - 07:42 PM
GUEST,open mike 27 Oct 02 - 12:48 AM
Allan Dennehy 27 Oct 02 - 09:24 AM
GUEST,leeneia 27 Oct 02 - 10:43 AM
van lingle 27 Oct 02 - 10:48 AM
UB Ed 28 Oct 02 - 09:20 AM
Spot 10 Jan 04 - 03:32 AM
kendall 10 Jan 04 - 05:43 AM
Willie-O 10 Jan 04 - 08:44 AM
John P 10 Jan 04 - 10:12 AM
GUEST,Strollin' Johnny 12 Jan 04 - 08:32 AM
GUEST,leeneia 12 Jan 04 - 10:00 AM
GUEST,JIOHN OF ELSIES`S BAND 12 Jan 04 - 10:48 AM
GUEST 03 Jan 10 - 07:50 PM
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Subject: For Guitarists
From: Durham Lad
Date: 21 Oct 99 - 02:06 PM

I've recently bought a Lowden Guitar. I'm having trouble setting it up to play loudly enough to play gigs. Has anyone advice on strings etc. that may help me.

Durham Lad


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Subject: RE: Help: For Guitarists
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 21 Oct 99 - 02:17 PM

A friend of mine uses a Lowden to accompany Irish jigs, reels etc in a session. He plays finger style (and incedentally he is one of the best accompaniests of that sort of music that I have ever met) and I know he uses metal finger picks but I don't know what strings he uses or anything else.

He has no problem making himself heard playing along with pipes, banjos, melodeons... I should see him over the weekend so I'll ask him how he set his up for you.

Jon


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Subject: RE: Help: For Guitarists
From: Fortunato
Date: 21 Oct 99 - 02:20 PM

Durham Lad

Could you be more descriptive about the environment in which you're having trouble?


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Subject: RE: Help: For Guitarists
From: Durham Lad
Date: 21 Oct 99 - 02:38 PM

It's about right for my living room. I'm just worried that it won't carry in a normal folk club.

Durham Lad


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Subject: RE: Help: For Guitarists
From: catspaw49
Date: 21 Oct 99 - 02:45 PM

Generally speaking, heavier gauge strings and a slightly higher action will increase volume, but let me go get Rick Fielding who played a Lowden for quite awhile as his main ax. 'Course I duuno, Rick's owned about 2479 guitars including the "Implosive Pedro" 12 string. Then again he has had 867 guitars stolen.........

Spaw


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Subject: RE: Help: For Guitarists
From: Fortunato
Date: 21 Oct 99 - 03:11 PM

Durham Lad

Are DR strings available in Britain? They may be a tad louder than some others, but a Dobro thumbpick (plastic) and Dunlop steel finger picks would certainly help.

As for attack, when finger-picking, resting the heel of your thumb just forward of bridge on the guitar top can add 'purchase' and enable you to increase the strength of your attack. This affects tone of course, but you may like the cut-through tone it produces.(experiment with location)


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Subject: RE: Help: For Guitarists
From: Lady McMoo
Date: 21 Oct 99 - 04:22 PM

I play a Lowden (83 vintage, so thoroughly well played in)and often back Irish music with it in DADGAD tuning. I use 12-54 guage strings (light or medium light according to the brand - I usually use D'Addario but often use other good quality makes and make sure they're always fresh and bright)and a relatively light (60 or 73 guage Dunlop or similar)plectrum. I have set the saddle (good quality bone - not plastic, same with the nut but your Lowden is probably so equipped already) to give a reasonable but not especially high action. I use quite a vigourous and percussive style of picking and strumming and find the guitar carries very well in a club or session setting. For gigs I used to use a rather large DiMarzio transducer fitted internally underneath the bridge which gives a rather warm and bassy sound but more recently have been using a microphone (Shure SM 57) for a more natural sound.

Hope that this may be of some assistance.

Best regards,

mcmoo


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Subject: RE: Help: For Guitarists
From: JedMarum
Date: 21 Oct 99 - 04:41 PM

ya want loud on yer guitar, ya might try some metal pegs. lot's of music stores will sell, and they will fer sure make yer ax louder. they change the tone some, and ya may r may not like it.


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Subject: RE: Help: For Guitarists
From: JedMarum
Date: 21 Oct 99 - 04:43 PM

also ... put medium strings on it. If ya play more than a few hours a week you'll adjust quickly. the sound is generally much better and significantly louder. I'd try this before I'd use the metal pegs.


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Subject: RE: Help: For Guitarists
From: Lowden Unruly
Date: 21 Oct 99 - 05:03 PM

That's Bull, Durham (couldn't resist that). I play an older Lowden and get plenty of volume out of it. Is your guitar new ? If so it may take awhile to open up. Do you use any sound reinforcement? I have a Seymour Duncan SA2 installed in it which gives it a very natural sound (I also use a sound hole cover) but I agree with McMoo, for lower volume situations I much prefer playing through a good mic. If you're just playing it acoustically in a group setting stringing it heavier will probably help but you might want to check with Lowden before you go too heavy. Good luck with your new Lowden, mine's been a lovely instrument. LU


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Subject: RE: Help: For Guitarists
From: Sam Hudson
Date: 21 Oct 99 - 05:04 PM

I've never heard a Lowden that didn't have a fair acoustic volume. I don't think you need worry about it in "a normal folk club" unless you're going to be playing with a whole bunch of melodeon players...


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Subject: RE: Help: For Guitarists
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 21 Oct 99 - 05:55 PM

Tricky situation. The Lowdon that I bought 20 years ago was probably the loudest guitar I've ever heard. Some folks think it's a too trebly, but it depends on who plays it. Currently my working guitar is a very small Martin 0-18 (1950 vintage). In a room it's about average volume, but from a stage, carries like crazy. My feeling is that your guitar will probably be fine. Just trust it. Internal amplification will make it louder, but it won't sound like the original guitar. That's the big problem. Acoustic guitars just weren't meant to have the volume of electrics.
Rick


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Subject: RE: Help: For Guitarists
From: catspaw49
Date: 21 Oct 99 - 08:33 PM

Now thet chall dun hashed this here thang out, I wuz wundrin ifn yall had a set uv longjohns I cud git ya ta sen me. Catspaw dun aax a time of two but ever chanz I git ta use his puter I do soaz I kin ax myselv.

CLETUS


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Subject: RE: Help: For Guitarists
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 22 Oct 99 - 12:34 PM

Hi Durham, if you're still here, I've got a bit of an oddball suggestion. Have you got "Pignose portable amps" where you are? It's a very small (about 8" by 10") amp that runs on a rechargeable battery. You could put a simple contact pickup on the guitar and run it through the pignose (which can sit almost invisible at your feet) with just enough gain on it to give you what you need.

Rick


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Subject: RE: Help: For Guitarists
From: Durham Lad
Date: 22 Oct 99 - 02:23 PM

Thanks guys for all suggestions. I think that I'll just have to trust it as suggested. For interest, the guitar was second hand and circa 1982. It has a toppy sound but the resonance is superb. At some time in the past it's had a Fishman fitted has anybody experience of these?

Durham Lad


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Subject: RE: Help: For Guitarists
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 22 Oct 99 - 07:32 PM

Durhaam_Lad, I met the Lowden player I mentioned before tonight He had his from new and says it is an O-10. He also said that he uses D'Addario light/medium strings and has made no changes to the original setup.

We have a small "festival" ( it's a 3 day pub session weekend) twice a year and tonight was the start. He was one of only 2 guitarists there and his instrument came through very clearly in a crowd of approx 30 players before thinking about non players present.

Jon


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Subject: RE: Help: For Guitarists (Lowden loudness)
From: GUEST,Richard Bridge (cookie and format C)
Date: 26 Oct 02 - 06:40 PM

I would check first with Lowden before using mediums. I did my guitar no favours by using bluegrass 13/58 D'Acquistos on it. Sounded good though.

Lowdens started life (and may stil be that way) with a different type of top bracing to most other good acoustics and the early ones had a reputation for fragility.


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Subject: RE: Help: For Guitarists (Lowden loudness)
From: Leadfingers
Date: 26 Oct 02 - 07:42 PM

Dont forget that what you can hear when you are playing is totally
different to what can be heard in front of you.All guitars project to
a greater or lesser extent and Lowdens are well named . Hit them hard
and they are loud'uns.I dont think I've ever come across a quiet Lowden


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Subject: RE: Help: For Guitarists (Lowden loudness)
From: GUEST,open mike
Date: 27 Oct 02 - 12:48 AM

is there any sound reinforcement in the pub?
amplifiers, microphones, etc.
the fishman could bed a good thing-
there are manypick-ups avaialbe,.
mine is a "mini-flex" and it is
basically a tiny microphone mounted
inside the guitar...easier than having to aim
at a microphone when playing...


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Subject: RE: Help: For Guitarists (Lowden loudness)
From: Allan Dennehy
Date: 27 Oct 02 - 09:24 AM

Lowden do NOT reccomend medium strings. They leave the factory these days with the quite expensive D'Addario EXP strings (.12). Personnally I believe that these are the Only D'Addario strings that are any good, the rest are rubbish compared to Martins in the same price class. I've never heard of a quiet Lowden, mind you.


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Subject: RE: Help: For Guitarists (Lowden loudness)
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 27 Oct 02 - 10:43 AM

Go to your local ax emporium and buy a thumbpick (and a spare in case you lose one). Use it on your bass strings while using your fingers on the high strings.   That's how Martin Wyndham Read and I both do it. So much less effort than changing strings.


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Subject: RE: Help: For Guitarists (Lowden loudness)
From: van lingle
Date: 27 Oct 02 - 10:48 AM

I also own a loud Lowden but it is a bit older ('85 or '86) and I string it with a D'Addario Bluegrass light set (12 -56) mostly because the low 6th string is always tuned down to D. Like L&UR's mine is outfitted with a Duncan SA2 pickup which delivers a very natural sound at volume levels that aren't excessive but I also use it with a Shure SM 57 which is the way I like to hear it most when sound reinforcement is necessary. Just my 2 cents. Good luck, vl.


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Subject: RE: Help: For Guitarists (Lowden loudness)
From: UB Ed
Date: 28 Oct 02 - 09:20 AM

I experienced significant loudness differences between very light and light strings; Now I go with the 12 to 54 range. Nonetheless, a Lowden should be louder than any other guitar at the session, period.

I also have had a Fishman installed with no problems whatsoever.

Ed


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Subject: RE: Help: For Guitarists (Lowden loudness)
From: Spot
Date: 10 Jan 04 - 03:32 AM

Now then...DRs are available in UK..I get mine from Sheehans in Leicester by post.About £8.50 per set.Used to use Elixirs but feel they're a rip off!! DR 12's feel like 10's and sound like 13's..what more could one want?? I use them on my 3yr old Lowden 032..fabulous!!
There is sound in abundance!! Also use Fishman soundhole blender thingy on stage..no probs!!
       Regards and HNY to all    ..Spot


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Subject: RE: Help: For Guitarists (Lowden loudness)
From: kendall
Date: 10 Jan 04 - 05:43 AM

My Taylor 810 has a thin brass piece between the plastic nut and the fingerboard. I'm sure it adds to the volume


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Subject: RE: Help: For Guitarists (Lowden loudness)
From: Willie-O
Date: 10 Jan 04 - 08:44 AM

I now own the guitar Rick Fielding was talking about...it can be so loud it's embarrassing. Especially the bass which can sound like a Strat on overdrive if boosted too much. (Fortunately it's very good about staying in tune). It's not a standard Lowden model, we believe it to be one of the Japanese-made Lowden designs which were marketed under the name Flambeau--but this one had no maker markings at all. What I'm saying is that it's not very analogous to remarks about any of the custom Lowden designs that look like Lowdens--it's more like a Gibson J-50 than anything else (a resemblance that has given rise to a lot of unsubstantiated folklore), except it has a cedar top. Anyway FWIW here's how I amplify it, an easy task since it has so much natural volume.

  • Standard Fishman piezo pickup, with a Fishman ProEQ preamp

  • OR
  • direct into a Peavey E-Coustic 112 amp, using the built in pre-amp setting (no pro_EQ)

  • OR
  • an SM57


I'm thinking that the Durham Lad maybe wasn't used to the mellower sound of a cedar top, which tends to give a sound that is round rather than cutting--lots of lovely mid. Most of the Lowden Lowdens I've tried had decent volume, not huge, but their greatest virtues were in other areas.
   
W-O


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Subject: RE: Help: For Guitarists (Lowden loudness)
From: John P
Date: 10 Jan 04 - 10:12 AM

Many of my friends refer to my Lowden as the "loud one". I don't know when it was built -- I've had it for 10 or 12 years and it was well used when I bought it. I've always used medium strings without any problem.

My main gig mike is a Minivox, which attaches to the outside of the instrument with a bit of velcro.

John Peekstok


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Subject: RE: Help: For Guitarists (Lowden loudness)
From: GUEST,Strollin' Johnny
Date: 12 Jan 04 - 08:32 AM

I've had two Lowdens, and O10 and an O25 (which I still have) and I've never heard a quiet Lowden! My O25 is CONSIDERABLY lowder (sorry) than my Martin J-40, which is a similar size and depth. There are three of us with Lowdens at our Club and, like John P, we always refer to them as the 'Loud-Ones'.

I've had Fishman Matrix transducers fitted in both of my Lowdens and used them with a Pro-EQ Mk 2 pre-amp, and they sound excellent. Need to go a bit easy on the middle frequencies or they sound a bit 'wardrobe-ish' but plenty of bass and top and they sound good.

Johnny


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Subject: RE: Help: For Guitarists (Lowden loudness)
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 12 Jan 04 - 10:00 AM

There's a post above supposedly from me. I did post that to another thread, long ago. I consider the advice good, but I don't like it that someone used my name without my knowing it.

the real leeneia


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Subject: RE: Help: For Guitarists (Lowden loudness)
From: GUEST,JIOHN OF ELSIES`S BAND
Date: 12 Jan 04 - 10:48 AM

Kendall,
         I also find strings supported both ends on brass give a brighter response.


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Subject: RE: Help: For Guitarists (Lowden loudness)
From: GUEST
Date: 03 Jan 10 - 07:50 PM

i have a lowden lse2 and i think its one of the smallest body size that they madeand its amazing that a small body like this can create so much volume and have so much tone espesially with a new set of EXP


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