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Old 07-04-2017, 07:15 PM
DoryDavis DoryDavis is offline
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Default Taylor ES trs into Fishman mini mic

Title sets up my question. Do I need some kind of DI or impedance transformer to still maintain the value of a balanced signal, but at the same time make sure my impedance/level is correct going into a mic input?

thanks
PS which box would do what I need?
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Old 07-04-2017, 07:18 PM
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martingitdave martingitdave is offline
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Default Taylor ES trs into Fishman mini mic

If you are using the Taylor with the balanced output jack (TRS), you can simply use a TRS/XLR balanced cable. The only benefit to the balanced connection with be a potential 6dB bump in gain and theoretical noise canceling over long runs of cable. It should, in theory, be otherwise the same performance as a standard instrument cable.
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Last edited by martingitdave; 07-04-2017 at 07:23 PM.
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Old 07-05-2017, 05:02 AM
DoryDavis DoryDavis is offline
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Thanks, I have been doing that and it sounds pretty good, but I am sensing some type of mismatch. The mic input has a preamp to power the mic, so is the preamped signal from the ES-1 overwhelming it, or is there an impedance mismatch? I spoke to someone at taylor and he recommended against hooking up this way. But I know others have done it. Between hooking up trs vs. unbalanced, I prefer the trs/xlr, but think I am missing something...thanks
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Old 07-05-2017, 07:53 AM
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Hi Dory,

I'll start my response with my "take" on the balanced ES:

The latest evolution of the Expression System eschews the balanced output for the very reason you're describing. Their early marketing suggested that a balanced signal was vastly superior to an unbalanced signal from the guitar. A balanced signal provides better shielding from noise and a quasi noise cancelling benefit. But that benefit is only realized when you have long lengths of cables. The balanced signal only effects tone if there is a large mismatch in impedance. The balanced ES signal is designed to be connected to mic preamps.

The confusion comes when people try to hook up the balanced ES systems to small acoustic amplifiers and sound systems. Most acoustic amplifiers have a high impedance guitar input. This is actually a good thing because most pickups, including the ES unbalanced connection, expect to "see" the higher input impedance.

When you plug in via the balanced ES connection to your mic channel, you are using it as Taylor intended, but not as Fishman amp designers expected.

In other words, to get the best signal chain (in theory) you would take your balanced output to a mixing desk and to a high fidelity PA system.

However, the older ES system is primarily a magnetic pickup system. And, as such, may not be the most realistic representation of your guitar. Even if you had the most pristine signal chain to the world's best PA, you might be dissatisfied.

Taylor no longer uses that design and now uses piezos behind the saddle to make it sound more realistic. I happen to like the sound of the new ES2. And, recognizing their balanced guitar output was a solution looking for a problem, they dumped that too.

In your case, you have two limitations: the older ES and the small amplifier. I suspect what you're hearing from the balanced connection to the mic input is probably the best you will get from that combination. I'm not sure more money spent on direct injection boxes or basic preamps will clean it up. Some people report better performance with modeling technology, body Rez, etc. Those preamps are designed to alter the signal to make it sound more realistic.
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