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Old 12-07-2017, 11:34 AM
martingitdave martingitdave is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: Chicago
Posts: 7,355

Originally Posted by Monsum View Post
'All pickups stink'

I know what you're saying.

I've spent so much time and money to get that satisfying tone but I'm still not happy with the results.

Here are pickups and preamps I've tried so far, mainly after reading recommendations on forums or guitar websites:

LR Baggs Lyric - not bad, like a weird sounding microphone. There is a forum member who uses the Lyric with the most natural sound I've ever heard. I wasn't that successful.

LR Baggs Anthem - affected too much the unplugged sound, and it wasn't as natural as expected, it sounded to me like a good piezo pickup.

LR Baggs M1 passive - didn't have high hopes but actually sounds pretty good through a right preamp (Red Eye), although it's still only a magnetic

K&K Pure mini - sounds good until you start strumming and then I can't tell much difference between this and a good under saddle pickup.

Fishman UST pickup with the Aura Spectrum Preamp - sounds very phasey, went through many images but couldn't find any natural-sounding one.

TC BodyRez - improves a little but all I can hear is some smiley EQ with a touch of compression, which can be achieved by other means.

iRig Acoustic Stage - definitely more natural than others, but prone to feedback (even with the feedback canceller) and seems to fragile in live setting.

Behringer MIC200 - preamp on budget but surprisingly good, I like it the most with the bass voicing EQ on acoustic.

I don't want any dual systems inside my guitar, I prefer passive pickups. One day I'll try the Tonedexter but it's not easily available in Europe.

I agree 100% with all of these characterizations. Glad to know our European friends are just as dissatisfied with pickups. ;-)
C.F. Martin & Taylor Guitars
LR Baggs Lyric & Taylor ES2 Pickups
Bose & HK Audio Amplification

"Lift your head and smile at trouble." "You'll find happiness someday."
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