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-   -   Dual Source: Anthem SL + K&K (https://www.acousticguitarforum.com/forums/showthread.php?t=494945)

rschultz 01-01-2018 02:15 PM

Dual Source: Anthem SL + K&K
 
I've been interested in dual sources for many years. It started with the (full) Anthem + K&K (see thread). Because there are no electronics in the (mono) end jack, it's easy enough to wire up a stereo jack and wire the 2 signals in.

Then I tried the Lyric + K&K and experimented with that in a variety of ways. Not quite as simple since all the electronics are in the end jack, but Baggs was smart enough to design in a stereo jack and solder tabs so it's pretty easy to wire up a 2nd source to the Ring tab.

At some point I looked into the Anthem SL, but since there were no solder tabs (like the Lyric) I gave up. But it's always nagged at me that I thought it was probably possible. So recently I bought another one and figured it out. No solder tabs on the circuit board, but you can wire directly to the jack. The hardest part is sneaking a wire in through everything. I used a twisted pair of single wires because one has to go on top (red) and one has to go on bottom (black). See pictures.

Pictures #1: red signal wire (on bottom) connected to ring jack, black ground (on top) to chassis ground.
https://i.imgur.com/BaXfaeJ.jpg

Pictures #2: Ring jack, red wire. The other big tab on the left is the switch, don't connect the ground to that or you'll drain your battery in about 2 minutes.
https://i.imgur.com/EWSniNG.jpg

Pictures #3: All done. See previous threads for information on connectors used.
https://i.imgur.com/CpjX3h0.jpg

jseth 01-01-2018 02:29 PM

It sure seems that the bridgeplate's "job" could be compromised with all that stuff hanging on there (the True Mic and the K&K transducers... not to mention being very crowded!

Not a concern for you? Notice any degradation in the unplugged volume or tone?

guitaniac 01-01-2018 03:17 PM

Thanks for posting this. I have a couple of questions.

1) The usual location for the Tru Mic and the K&K sensors is the same. What kind of compromise did you work out to mount them both?

2) It seems probable that the Element preamp has a fixed gain, since the Tru Mic level is what needs to be adjusted to get a good balance between the Tru Mic highs and the Element lows. Is the Pure Mini's signal close enough in level to the Element signal that its possible to adjust the Tru Mic level for a good balance between the Tru Mic highs and Pure Mini lows?



I'm curious about the Pure Mini level (in comparison to the Element UST level) because I'm contemplating having a local luthier wire three JJB sensors to the Fishman Clearwave "barndoor" preamp in one of my guitars. (The JJB sensors are my "plan B", if a PUTW #27 SBT doesn't prove satisfactory. This particular luthier usually installs the JJB sensors passively with a Switchcraft strap-jack, but I suspect he'd find the JJB/Clearwave preamp combo an interesting project.)

rschultz 01-02-2018 07:29 AM

I made a terrible mistake and connected the signal ground to the switch... instead of chassis ground. I will update the pictures above.

rschultz 01-02-2018 07:39 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jseth (Post 5588034)
It sure seems that the bridgeplate's "job" could be compromised with all that stuff hanging on there (the True Mic and the K&K transducers... not to mention being very crowded!

Not a concern for you? Notice any degradation in the unplugged volume or tone?

Yeah it's kind of messy in there, but I've ran with dual sourced setups for years and it works. Not concerned about the weight, most of it is anchored on the sides of the guitar.

rschultz 01-02-2018 07:45 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by guitaniac (Post 5588085)
Thanks for posting this. I have a couple of questions.

1) The usual location for the Tru Mic and the K&K sensors is the same. What kind of compromise did you work out to mount them both?

2) It seems probable that the Element preamp has a fixed gain, since the Tru Mic level is what needs to be adjusted to get a good balance between the Tru Mic highs and the Element lows. Is the Pure Mini's signal close enough in level to the Element signal that its possible to adjust the Tru Mic level for a good balance between the Tru Mic highs and Pure Mini lows?



I'm curious about the Pure Mini level (in comparison to the Element UST level) because I'm contemplating having a local luthier wire three JJB sensors to the Fishman Clearwave "barndoor" preamp in one of my guitars. (The JJB sensors are my "plan B", if a PUTW #27 SBT doesn't prove satisfactory. This particular luthier usually installs the JJB sensors passively with a Switchcraft strap-jack, but I suspect he'd find the JJB/Clearwave preamp combo an interesting project.)

1) See LR Baggs suggested (alternate) mounting locations below. I have always mounted the tru-mic (anthem, SL, lyric) behind the bridge pins to make room for the K&K... it works.

2) Not really, strange as it is the passive K&K has a hotter signal than the powered Anthem. You need a mixer or something to adjust the level between each one, and I think you need EQ for the K&K to remove some of the mid-range but others disagree. The Anthem doesn't need much EQ, but in dual source situations, I often use low or high pass filters to remove parts of the signal. So when I run a hum bucking sound hole pickup, I remove the low end at 1000 Hz to keep it from having phase interactions with the K&K. I may employ a similar EQ to the Anthem.... just really want the mic from it, not the UST. But the nice thing about the Anthem, is if I want to go simple... I can just use a mono cable into it and not mess with the dual sourced K&K.

https://i.imgur.com/ORPhkt0.png

guitaniac 01-02-2018 08:46 AM

Thanks for the explanation. I had misunderstood and thought that you had actually replaced the Element UST with the Pure Mini. I recall that there was one report (back in an earlier 2012 or 2013 thread) of a luthier doing that with apparent success.

rschultz 01-02-2018 08:51 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by guitaniac (Post 5588767)
Thanks for the explanation. I had misunderstood and thought that you had actually replaced the Element UST with the Pure Mini. I recall that there was one report (back in an earlier 2012 or 2013 thread) of a luthier doing that with apparent success.

I tried this a few years back, I didn't think it worked that well. The Baggs preamp applies and EQ to the UST, and that curve would likely not be right for the K&K.

martingitdave 01-02-2018 10:09 AM

Rschultz,

Thanks so much for taking the time to post this. I started a thread last week asking about this very topic. You've tried exactly what I am interested in trying - pairing the K&K with a TruMic using Bagg's preamp systems.

However, I would prefer to go the mono route with the Anthem SL because I do a lot of open mics and don't have the luxury of stereo output/input.

My understanding is that the SL has a fixed crossover and the mic volume is just a blending function. So, I wonder if the baked in EQ in the SL preamp makes much difference (compared to the full Anthem) since it's just handling frequencies below 250 Hz?

Your comments and advice is greatly appreciated.

rschultz 01-02-2018 12:22 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by martingitdave (Post 5588869)
Rschultz,

Thanks so much for taking the time to post this. I started a thread last week asking about this very topic. You've tried exactly what I am interested in trying - pairing the K&K with a TruMic using Bagg's preamp systems.

However, I would prefer to go the mono route with the Anthem SL because I do a lot of open mics and don't have the luxury of stereo output/input.

My understanding is that the SL has a fixed crossover and the mic volume is just a blending function. So, I wonder if the baked in EQ in the SL preamp makes much difference (compared to the full Anthem) since it's just handling frequencies below 250 Hz?

I know UST's have a bad rep here on AGF, but in the case of the Anthem SL having a crossover at 250 Hz (as you mention), I wouldn't worry too much about it if you just want to go mono. It's great by itself. Give it a shot if you want, but I don't think you'll have very good results simply plugging the K&K into the UST port of the Anthem.

FYI, I go mono out in my dual source setups. But yes, it requires a mixer of some kind. For years I used a 2 channel combo amp as the mixer. Recently I got a Helix, which works great as a mixer, and has tons of routing and effect options.

rschultz 01-02-2018 12:23 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by guitaniac (Post 5588767)
Thanks for the explanation. I had misunderstood and thought that you had actually replaced the Element UST with the Pure Mini. I recall that there was one report (back in an earlier 2012 or 2013 thread) of a luthier doing that with apparent success.

If you can dig that up, it would be an interesting read... I couldn't make it work.

guitaniac 01-02-2018 01:22 PM

This was the Dec. 2013 thread. The claim (about a successful substitution of the Pure Mini for the Element) is made in the first post. Much discussion followed, and you were a thread participant yourself, rschultz.

http://www.acousticguitarforum.com/f...2B+K%26amp%3BK


Also note comment #15 where a second member mentions that he's heard the Anthem/Pure Mini combo in question, and testifies that it sounded very natural to him.

rschultz 01-02-2018 01:30 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by guitaniac (Post 5589142)
This was the Dec. 2013 thread. The claim (about a successful substitution of the Pure Mini for the Element) is made in the first post. Much discussion followed, and you were a thread participant yourself, rschultz.

http://www.acousticguitarforum.com/f...2B+K%26amp%3BK

Hmmmm, yes I see. TaylorCocobolo said he's heard it and it sounds nice, and that he uses a Venue to dial it in.

martingitdave 01-02-2018 02:22 PM

Thanks for the continued discussion. The guitar in question has a long thru saddle and cannot accommodate a UST without routing the slot, which I'd rather not do. So, I plan on using the K&K as the piezo in a single, or dual source system. The Anthem SL is attractive because the Tru Mic is movable and sounds good for the highs. It might be a bit too mid focused, so I liked the idea of the side of the bridge plate in your diagram.

Cuki found the patent drawings and sent it to me. I can't post it here, but essentially, the pickup source in the SL goes through a high pass filter, a "processor", and a low pass filter. They do not specify what the "processor" is. Compression, phase reversal, etc? We don't think it's EQ because the do the HPF and LPF as distinct stages. So what does this mean? Exactly what you surmised. Regardless of other gain or impedance issues, the K&K pickup is unlikely to be reproduced faithfully with the "special sauce" Baggs preamp.

I'm back to my original plan: Seymour Duncan Wavelength Duo with the K&K in place of the Element. The Duo preamp is analog and has bass and treble pots, and no other processing to my knowledge. It's not very feedback resistant, but it sounds pretty good and it's simple. The mic, on the other hand, is inferior to the TruMic. The Duncan setup is best when you're primarily satisfied with the pickup sound, but want to add air - and you don't want external processing equipment. That's the situation I am in.

rschultz 01-02-2018 02:29 PM

Quick comment on the KK + Anthem... it is easily wired up in the (full) Anthem version because the preamp (mounted on the sound hole) has a jack for the UST. So plugging in the K&K instead of the UST is rather easy once you solder a 2.5mm male connector to the K&K wires.

But the Anthem SL's preamp is in the endpin and the UST is hard soldered to the circuit board. You could de-solder it and wire in a connector... but I wouldn't recommend it.

martingitdave 01-02-2018 05:14 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by rschultz (Post 5589217)
Quick comment on the KK + Anthem... it is easily wired up in the (full) Anthem version because the preamp (mounted on the sound hole) has a jack for the UST. So plugging in the K&K instead of the UST is rather easy once you solder a 2.5mm male connector to the K&K wires.

But the Anthem SL's preamp is in the endpin and the UST is hard soldered to the circuit board. You could de-solder it and wire in a connector... but I wouldn't recommend it.

Yes, that's exactly what I would be doing. I de-soldered the Element from the D-TAR pickup. Incidentally, I think D-TAR built a more road worthy product. But, it's not as convenient, nor does it mitigate feedback like the Anthem system. I've soldered on those Baggs preamps before and the solder pads will come off easily ruining the device completely. It would be best avoided by anyone besides good electronics technicians.

rschultz 01-03-2018 07:53 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by martingitdave (Post 5589436)
Yes, that's exactly what I would be doing. I de-soldered the Element from the D-TAR pickup. Incidentally, I think D-TAR built a more road worthy product. But, it's not as convenient, nor does it mitigate feedback like the Anthem system. I've soldered on those Baggs preamps before and the solder pads will come off easily ruining the device completely. It would be best avoided by anyone besides good electronics technicians.

Yes I know. When ever I solder to solder tabs like that (Lyric, Anthem SL, etc) I solder on a couple short splice wires that are one time solders. Then I solder the pickup wires to that. So then if I change pickups, I'm just touching those short splice wires and not the solder tabs.

martingitdave 01-03-2018 07:59 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by rschultz (Post 5589993)
Yes I know. When ever I solder to solder tabs like that (Lyric, Anthem SL, etc) I solder on a couple short splice wires that are one time solders. Then I solder the pickup wires to that. So then if I change pickups, I'm just touching those short splice wires and not the solder tabs.


Excellent idea. Iíll keep that in mind for future. For the moment, I chickened out and installed the Wavelength Duo in my new guitar. I wanted to give the SL a try, but decided to stick with what I know works. If I feel adventurous in the future, Iíll try the SL. Thereís also less stuff in the guitar with the SL.

rschultz 01-13-2018 05:11 PM

So it's been a couple weeks, I finally had some time today to play with it.

Not too long ago I had a Felix to blend the two sources together, but eventually saw that I could get sooooo much more functionality and flexibility from a Helix for the same amount of money. So that's what I use now to blend two sources together. Besides the Anthem + K&K preset, I also have a Black Angel (sound hole) + K&K preset.

As for the Anthem + K&K, here is the Helix setup:
Anthem, high pass at 750 Hz. The 200-600 Hz midrange in dual sources often interacts (badly), so I cut this out so there is only 1 source in this range.
K&K is the main sound, but I remove some midrange and add some high end

I think it's incredibly interesting that the passive K&K has a hotter signal than the active Anthem SL, so the Helix gains it up. And I set it so that if the Anthem volume is 100%, it's rather aggressive and mic'y. But then it's easy to roll of the volume knob back to reduce that mic sound without it affecting the base K&K tone.

Besides the EQ and blending, I have some compression on each channel... and chorus and reverb. The chorus is pretty mild (slow rate, long pre delay), and in the screen shot below you can see that the mix in [brackets] means it's linked to the expression pedal to go between 40-60%. So for strumming songs I can back off the chorus, and for finger style stuff I can roll up the chorus. I've also got a couple Snapshots setup to do similar things with the effects. Snapshots are an easy way to adjust different effects within the same preset.

https://i.imgur.com/ufotjqw.jpg

The blocks with 5 bars are expression pedal blocks (set at -120 db) that I use just to set the EQ of each one individually, normally they are bypassed.

Top line is the Anthem: LPF, Comp, mic preamp, on/off
2nd line is the K&K: Comp, mic preamp, PEQ, on/off

Then they are blended together, and apply the modulation and reverb.

The bottom line is the 2nd processor that I could use for another instrument or mic.


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