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Old 08-01-2017, 05:32 PM
brancher brancher is offline
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Default SoundHole Preamp or External??? (help plz...)

Hi,

I am about to order a K&K Pure Mini for my Yairi DYMR70SB. Since this is the best guitar ever created, I thought I would use it with a decent amplification system, and I've used K&K before (but without a preamp).

Okay, so I have essentially three choices:
1. K&K Pure Mini, going to Pure preamp clipped to my belt or something;
2. K&K Pure Mini, but with the Soundhole Ultrapure preamp. Battery, etc.
3. K&K Pure Mini with Pre-phase preamp (vol + phase), out to whatever.

I have kind of eliminated the pre-phase, since I do have to adjust different guitars when I plug in. So I'm pretty sure I want the Bass/Mid/Tre controls.

What are the pros/cons, and what is the consensus about the preamp inside the soundhole as opposed to the external solution. The two preamps are electrically identical, just in different forms for ergonomics I guess.

I also have an additional instrument I picked up and it has a UST, to it's gonna be replaced with K&K as well. If I get the eternal preamp, it may be more economical since I can swap the preamp from instrument to instrument, but I have heard some folks say the belt-clip part is more of an irritant than I think it will be.

So, since I don't have any experience with this config (and since I want someone else to be responsible for my decisions ), I would love to hear opinions on this.

THANKS!!!
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Old 08-01-2017, 08:23 PM
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One of the main reasons I like the K&K is that it doesn't affect the acoustic sound of your instrument.......you start putting cable harnesses, batteries and preamps inside of your instrument (some even attached to the top, which is supposed to be vibrating) and you compromise the tone of your instrument.

I'd go with the Pure Mini and the Pure XLR pre - a little more expensive than the standard K&K pre, but well worth it.
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Old 08-01-2017, 09:09 PM
brancher brancher is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fitness1 View Post
.....you start putting cable harnesses, batteries and preamps inside of your instrument (some even attached to the top, which is supposed to be vibrating) and you compromise the tone of your instrument.
Yeah, that did cross my mind. I called K&K today, they told me the Ultrapure is only about 3 ounces -- but I get it - this instrument has a healthy vibration, and I'd hate to compromise that. Not sure if 3 oz would or not, though.
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Old 08-01-2017, 09:21 PM
MrErikJ MrErikJ is offline
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I always prefer having my preamp on the outside of my guitar to prevent severe alteration and allow for easier control. I think the outboard preamp or the dreaded barn door preamp are the best for ease of control. I don't particularly care for soundhole controls as they're just awkward and not as flexible so I say do the outboard preamp and save the real estate in your guitar.
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Old 08-02-2017, 12:06 PM
DowntownJamieB DowntownJamieB is offline
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I have K&K pure minis in my 2 guitars. One has the pre-phase and one has the ultra pure. Both sound so good to me with no EQ adjusting that I never mess with EQ anymore other than at my mixer if at all. So for me, the pre-phase gives me all I need- volume and phase, and it's tiny and probably doesn't affect the top. The ultra pure is really difficult to adjust EQ even between songs - impossible during a song. So if EQ control is really important, go external pre-amp or go pre-phase with external EQ
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Old 08-02-2017, 12:22 PM
DowntownJamieB DowntownJamieB is offline
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One other thought on the choice is if you ever need a sound hole cover. A sound hole cover won't work with either the pre-phase or the ultra-pure.
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Old 08-02-2017, 12:30 PM
akafloyd akafloyd is offline
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If you're going to have multiple instruments with the K&K it will be more economical to go with an external preamp. I would also encourage you to consider other preamps than K&K, there are many available that I believe provide better feature sets and potentially better sound.
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Old 08-02-2017, 02:13 PM
brancher brancher is offline
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I think you folks are right about flexibility of use and intrusion.... and I hadn't even considered a feedback buster piece...

I am leaning toward leaving the Ultrapure out but just deciding between the prephase or an external (Pure or comparable competitor).

I think the pure mini with a pure external preamp may be the ticket for me - that way I can swap the external preamp between instruments, and minimize investment and complexity in the interior (and did I mention I hate swapping internal batteries?...)....

On the other hand, I don't remember any time I've played any openmics where I couldn't just plug in and maybe only hit the phase button. I had a Martin PA4 for awhile and sometimes I'd play with teh tone (or was it 'scoop') knob, but that's all.

But I do like adjusting quickly and easily. And my guitars vary pretty widely as far as bass/treble emphasis, so the external Pure would complement me there....
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Old 08-02-2017, 02:22 PM
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external! One setup for all your K&K equipped guitars. I have a K&K pure preamp, but don't clip it to my belt. I keep it on the floor next to my tuner.
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Old 08-03-2017, 01:21 PM
jseth jseth is offline
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I would go the external preamp route with this, UNLESS you are going to be gigging a LOT...

I have internal preamps (and battery!) in my Anthem-equipped Mark Angus guitars that I use primarily on stage... they sound really good and work just fine, but the battery and preamp, etc., adds a lot of weight and stuff will rattle around in there, eventually.

When I got my Goodall, I knew I did NOT want a battery in it! Went for a K&K Pure mIni with the outboard PURE preamp, the stand alone one that gives me the option of using phantom power from my mixer, instead of always having to use a battery.

If you REALLY want that guitar to sound good, I would recommend exploring the Trance Audio Lens systems, or Teddy Randazzo's units (with external preamp) called The Dazzo.

K&K is a fine pickup, but I don't think that it alone is going to give a really pure acoustic sound... Were I to be gigging with my Goodall, I would probably throw an SM-57 on the soundhole, at a low volume - just to bring some "air", string noise and "breath" into the signal...
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Old 08-04-2017, 09:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brancher View Post
…I would love to hear opinions on this.

THANKS!!!
Hi brancher

I have 4 K&K equipped guitars (all dual source), and opted for external preamps over a decade ago because of the ability to adjust things on the fly so much easier.

I use Raven or DTAR external preamps for my rigs because they have a channel for microphone as well as pickup, and they give me both gain (input volume from the guitar) and Master (output volume) control as well as Bass-Mid-High tone controls.

The other thing a stand-alone external preamp brings is all of the Direct Box capabilities (¼" and XLR outputs which can be used simultaneously), and ground lift, and effects loops.

The sleeper single channel external preamp out there is the Fishman Platinum "Stage" model for $150 that is housed in aluminum, is low profile, has sweepable mids, will power up via phantom from the PA or amp, phase control, gain (trim) and master volumes, pre-or-post DI capability, selectable lo-cut filter, and bass/guitar input switch.

The XLR feeds the mic cables out the side instead of the top (like ParaDI), and ground lift is automatic. I own one, and it is small (fits in the pick drawer of my cases). There is a hand operated adjustable boost button on it as well.





Hope this adds to the discussion (I came to the party late).



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Old 08-08-2017, 09:33 PM
brancher brancher is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ljguitar View Post
Hi brancher

I have 4 K&K equipped guitars (all dual source), and opted for external preamps over a decade ago because of the ability to adjust things on the fly so much easier.

I use Raven or DTAR external preamps for my rigs because they have a channel for microphone as well as pickup, and they give me both gain (input volume from the guitar) and Master (output volume) control as well as Bass-Mid-High tone controls.

The other thing a stand-alone external preamp brings is all of the Direct Box capabilities (¼" and XLR outputs which can be used simultaneously), and ground lift, and effects loops.

The sleeper single channel external preamp out there is the Fishman Platinum "Stage" model for $150 that is housed in aluminum, is low profile, has sweepable mids, will power up via phantom from the PA or amp, phase control, gain (trim) and master volumes, pre-or-post DI capability, selectable lo-cut filter, and bass/guitar input switch.

The XLR feeds the mic cables out the side instead of the top (like ParaDI), and ground lift is automatic. I own one, and it is small (fits in the pick drawer of my cases). There is a hand operated adjustable boost button on it as well.





Hope this adds to the discussion (I came to the party late).



Hey, Thanks!! for the advice. I had heard of the Fishman Platinum a few weeks ago, but hadn't made a final decision on preamps yet. I am going with just the Pure mini, without prephase or ultra, then add external as needed. I think in the long run, it'll prove cheaper, esp. w multiple instruments.

Thanks everyone for the help. I should be cookin with gas in a couple of weeks!

Cheers.
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Old 08-09-2017, 11:18 AM
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Other than my Taylors, my other guitars are vintage/semi-vintage (including a couple Alvarez Yairis) and I didn't want to create a permanent installation of a pickup system in any of them. The best solution for me was a removable soundhole pickup that could be shared by three guitars. While not the best pickup in the world, but good enough for my situation I bought a Seymour Duncan Woody XL (the XL is noiseless and has adjustable poles). I bobtailed the cord to accept a standard guitar cable.

I've been using an external LR Bags Gig pro pack that I can put on the guitar strap, wear on my belt or attach it to my music stand. With that pickup it works fine, but I've read that the K&K doesn't play well with the LR Baggs preamp and you're better off with the K&K preamp. The K&K external preamp looks pretty small and if it does the job, perhaps that's the way to go.

I'm sure you'll find the solution that works best for you.
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