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  #1  
Old 11-27-2017, 07:52 PM
edward993 edward993 is offline
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Default LR Baggs Anthem users?

I am interested in installing an Anthem --notably the Anthem SL in lieu of the full version-- and am wondering what you folks think of this pickup system?

FWIW, I am a long-time user of Taylor's ES (not the ES2) and this system along with my Baggs Venue has served me very well with stellar live tone for quite some time. I am thinking of installing the Anthem SL into another acoustic so am looking for your thoughts. TIA!

Edward
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Old 11-27-2017, 08:13 PM
Bear Davis Bear Davis is offline
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I have the Anthem in my Gibson and it blows the doors off the ES 1 or 2 systems in my Taylors. It's not a fair fight...

This is one of the reasons I ordered my 914c without electronics. IMHO players that "believe" their ES sounds better than an Anthem have not tried an Anthem or have serious hearing loss they are not aware of.
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Old 11-27-2017, 09:48 PM
kcnbys kcnbys is offline
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I use the Anthem SL in my Taylor 810, and really, really, really like it . . . a lot.
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Old 11-27-2017, 11:57 PM
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I have a SL installed on my B-25 3/4 (because the guitar is too small, the standard Anthem won't fit). Love it.

With the SL you can't conveniently blend between the mic and the piezo, which is a shame. But still you can do it with a special screwdriver, just not that handy.
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Old 11-28-2017, 12:22 AM
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BBWW BBWW is offline
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Not sure why you want the SL. A full Anthem gives you more control. I'm sure the SL is fine, but I use the Anthem now in 3 of guitars and I am moving the rest over to that system. It just takes time as I shamelessly own more than several guitars.
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Old 11-28-2017, 05:03 AM
OjaiAndrew OjaiAndrew is offline
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Default K&K pure mini

You didnít mention what guitar youíre installing this in. I have both the Anthem and K&K pure mini In Martins and I prefer the K&K. Itís cheaper and even with the $99 preamp itís still cheaper. It has a more natural tone and requires less modification of your guitar. Just my $.02. Also, if you get the Anthem get the full version- way better.
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Old 11-28-2017, 07:40 AM
pjbelsch pjbelsch is offline
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I have a anthem SL in my wee-little martin and the sound i get out of the thing blows people out of the water, i have used the lyric and the K&K but my ears and heart bring me back to the anthem. I did have a guitar with the full system. while i would have liked it in my martin the body was just too small to try and install it. also I would recommend the full anthem on a bigger body guitar as i believe the controls sticking to the sound board might deaden the tone of the instrument a little.
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Old 11-28-2017, 08:25 AM
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I have the full Anthem in two Collings OM's and I had a Taylor with ES2, Santa Cruz with K&K and others.

The full anthem is well worth the extra. I like blending the Tru-mic with the Element UST and I enjoy the LED's that allow me to check Battery life. Also, Batteries last quite a long time.

I am VERY impressed with the Baggs Anthem. I have not tried the SL, but for me, the full Anthem has proven itself many times over.
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  #9  
Old 11-28-2017, 10:23 AM
edward993 edward993 is offline
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Thanks for all the feedback guys! And sorry I initially posted in the wrong sub forum ...thanks, mods, for moving it!

1. I'm putting it in a Taylor 210dlx ...no disrespect, but for me it's a more modest, kinda "beater" guit that I don't have to stress over.

2. Tried the K&K in a stellar-sounding RTaylor ...hated it. And I know how to eq ...just hated it. Either from my Venue or at the console, I never got the tone to sound natural, ugh!

3. Don't like typical piezo-UST tone ...never met one I liked; total deal killer as a stand-alone pickup.

4. Full Anthem costs a lot more than the SL version, which I understand it the same, just without the user-defined blender pot as it is factory set. And since this 210 is not my go-to-live guit, I don't want to spend the extra dough as much as I simply want to have a genuinely good-sounding pickup in a "just in case" situation. If the SL sounds as good as many say it does, I can live without the blending feature.

Edward
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Old 11-29-2017, 07:53 PM
jseth jseth is offline
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Edward;

I have the SL in both my Mark Angus 6 and 12 string acoustics; they are my primary "stage" guitars...

Had them installed not long after the Anthem first hit the market... like, 8 years ago or so? Anyway, I spent a LONG time talking with one of the techs at Baggs, trying to discover "which?" Anthem was the one for me... and given my playing style and planned use for the pickup, he recommended I go with the SL - which, as you noted, is $100 less expensive, so the decision didn't bother me at all.

You have to take the time to understand what the pickup does, how the Anthem system works... the "big" one does have more adjustable parameters, but for me, they did not really come into play. I play mostly solo or in duos, playing hybrid fingerstyle and strumming with a medium to light attack, only occasionally "digging in" for a solo or particular passage.

The "big" Anthem has the capability to use ONLY the UST portion of the pickup, ostensibly for high volume uses (like with in a loud band format), and that was not something I needed nor wanted. Yes, you can vary "how much" of the UST (Element) is in the mix with both systems, BUT the SL has the Element portion amplifying ONLY the lower frequencies, and there is no way to have it pick up the higher registers; this didn't bother me at all, as that piezo "quack" mostly happens when a player "digs in" on the higher registers...

Having a smaller control "box" mounted inside the soundhole instead of a big piece of plastic "pie" for the bigger version was also attractive to me. As to the battery life indicator? Well, these things get such good mileage out of batteries that I have never had one "go down" on me on stage. I simply write down when I changed the battery on a piece of paper and keep it in my guitar case pocket. I believe the estimated battery life is somewhere around 150 hours or the like, although I have never pushed it that far!

Funny thing is, the technician at Baggs told me that many people who buy the bigger version are actually confused by all the ways to adjust things! I've read comments on this Forum from actual users who clearly don't understand what the pickup is doing!

With the SL, the Element is always set to amplify the lower frequencies, while the Tru-Mic portion gets everything else... there's a tiny "set screw" on the control box that one adjusts to taste. It is recessed and would be VERY difficult to alter by accident, so once you have it set, it ain't going nowhere else! You will want to spend the time to get this adjusted to your liking; my tastes have changed over the years - at first, I had it tweaked more to the UST, but now have it slightly favoring the True-Mic. Your ears will tell you what sounds best with whatever rig you play through...

The main caveat I would introduce is that the Anthem system WILL CHANGE the unamplified sound of your guitar... maybe some folks don't notice the change because they've not put in thousands of hours with that particular instrument prior to the installation, but I did, and I REALLY noticed a shift, both in tone and volume. The volume part "came back" after about 6-9 months, but the tone shift has stayed pretty much the same. (The guitars in question are hand builds, one from 1979 and one from 1983, both of which I have played extensively since they were new...)

Hard to describe the shift in tone, but the best I can do is that it took a guitar that was previously VERY rich in mid-range focus (from low-mid to high-mid) and sort of flattened it out, squashed the tones to a more even-keel - if that makes any sense? Possibly not a tragedy with some guitars...

In any event, I am pleased enough with the amplified sound that I have left the pickups in those guitars, all these years... if I weren't thrilled with the sound I got with them, I would have yanked them out immediately!
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  #11  
Old 11-29-2017, 09:29 PM
AeroUSA AeroUSA is offline
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If you value your guitars unplugged tone then I suggest that you do not do it.

If this is to be mainly a stage guitar then go ahead and install the full Anthem. It will sound great.
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Old 11-29-2017, 09:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AeroUSA View Post
If you value your guitars unplugged tone then I suggest that you do not do it.

If this is to be mainly a stage guitar then go ahead and install the full Anthem. It will sound great.
While the Element UST under the saddle may impact the acoustic tone, I've als read that any changes settle after a while. I loved the acoustic sound of my guitar after having a Baggs Anthem installed. If it was any different, I honestly never noticed anything to take issue with.

This is the acoustic sound of my guitar. This has a full Baggs Anthem installed. I value this sound and find no fault in it. What do you think? Did the Anthem Rob this guitar of great acoustic tone? I don't mean to be flippant. Just trying to demonstrate acoustic tone of a great guitar with a full Anthem installed.

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Old 11-30-2017, 12:35 AM
AeroUSA AeroUSA is offline
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Just my experience. Iíve had Anthems in an OM28, D35 and OMJM and it was like here was a sponge in the guitar reducing volume and tone. I believe the element is good because itís soft and absorbs some of the Ďquackí when played hard. I do have an Anthem in my Rainsong and I do not get th same feeling although I have never heard the guitar without it. Itís possible that Carbon Fiber responds differently, they are certainly quite loud to behind with as they are thin and have no bracing etc.
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  #14  
Old 11-30-2017, 12:39 AM
AeroUSA AeroUSA is offline
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I do think I can hear some of the Ďspongeí in your video but itís hard to tell on YouTube. Also the guitar and playing sound great so it wouldnít matter.

Iíve just made a decision to only use the Anthem in my Rainsong stage guitar for now and still to the matrix and k and k in my wood guitars.
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  #15  
Old 11-30-2017, 01:39 AM
guitaniac guitaniac is offline
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In my case, there was no completely satisfying adjustment of the UST/mic balance. Even with the best compromise possible (with respect to setting the mic level) I've had to EQ down some brittle highs and a whole lot of muddy low mids. Once that is done (with my particular rig), the Anthem SL is indeed a great sounding pickup.
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