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Old 04-16-2018, 09:05 PM
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noledog noledog is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: Florida's First Coast
Posts: 7,197

Originally Posted by martingitdave View Post
It is possible to get a good sound out of either pickup system. Both require compromise. The Matrix UST itself does not alter acoustic tone in my experience. I did not believe this at first. But, I have experimented with the Matrix. It seems to make no difference. The material appears to be similar density and hardness as the saddle itself. But, the preamp hanging off the soundboard can. The passive K&K is light weight and OK with the right equalization. The advantage of the Fishman is that it is plug and play direct to the amplification. The K&K will take a DI Preamp and you still might not love the tone. It’s a trial and error process. The K&K will take the weight out of the guitar for sure. But the results you want are not guaranteed.
+1 on Dave's comments...the Matrix unlike the braided, squishy Element, has no affect on the unplugged tone. I have a Matrix in my 000-18 and my friend has the newer Blend in his D-18 with the short stiff mic. If you tweak the mic & adjust it facing straight back towards the end pin it becomes much more usable and really sounds nice imo. When he bought it, I took it home and adjusted it and tested it direct thru my Loudbox, it really sounded full and warm. The mounting of the controls is in a very stiff area inside the soundhole and I'm not sure it affects the soundboard that much if at all.

** I have the M80 in my D-18 100% of the time. I've tested the affect on the unplugged tone many times, no difference. It is not a heavy mag like the Sunrise which may dampen a top a little. A well tweaked M80 sounds very warm and articulate with excellent feedback resistance.

*** My other buddy and fellow local full-time musician just bought a D-35, put in a K&K and we tested it out directly into my Loudbox. At lower usable cafe venue type volumes it sounded lovely. However, cranked up to the volumes I play at it becomes squirrelly and needs some out board help like a Platinum Pro or a Q-Strip.

**** You may wanna try the Blend out for awhile and give it a college try, you have K&K equipped guitars so having a Blend may give you some nice alternative options in tone. The onboard controls are very stage-helpful imo.

Best wishes,

NOLE TUNES & Coastal Acoustic Music one love jam!
3 lil' birdz: Martin D18, Takamine KC70 & P3NC
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