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Old 06-15-2019, 07:35 AM
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Methos1979 Methos1979 is offline
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Default Unhappy with K&K in my X7 2.0

Although the K&K has been my go-to pickup system for it's decent tone and bulletproof simplicity, getting a great tone for my style of playing (fingerstyle with fingertips only - no nails) has always been a challenge that requires a fair amount of external EQ. But with the X7 2.0 custom I received back in December there was even more challenges due to the nature of the small body. I am able to do it with most any quality preamp with EQ but since acquiring my X10 with Level One Ghost system I'm even less enthused with the K&K X7 to the point where I considered selling it. But I do love the guitar unplugged for its size and of course that awesome woody top that is SO great that it's part of Emeralds group of X7 photos on their X7 webpage.

So I'm thinking that instead of selling I'd just try something else in there. While I know most everyone hates barn door systems, having on the fly volume, EQ, notch and tuner is very attractive for me since even with the best active system most open mic hosts struggle and fail to get a great tone for my style of playing necessitating that I carry at least a small preamp/EQ with me to those venues. Unfortunately, decent barn door systems are in decline. LR Baggs Anthem (or Element) StagePro seems to be the only game in town with mixed reviews. I'd love to be able to put in a Cole Clark Analogue 3 system but I kind of doubt they sell them aftermarket and then installing one in a small, carbon fiber guitar like the X7 would be difficult as you would be working blind.

Anyway, just wondering for the X7 2.0 owners out there with pickup systems, what do you have beyond the stock Element that usually comes with Emeralds these days and what do you like, dislike, etc about them. Any suggestions or recommendations for what I should try in this guitar? I'm thinking Anthem StagePro vs Element StagePro only because I'd like to have the internal mic to pick up some percussive action for a few songs we do where body tapping is a must.

Thoughts?
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Old 06-15-2019, 08:10 AM
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kramster kramster is offline
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I play the same way...always a challenge to get the sound you or I want. Would be very interesting to get a Cole Clark set up for sure.
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Old 06-15-2019, 08:28 AM
GuitarLuva GuitarLuva is offline
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Just an FYI the reason barn door style preamps are hard to get now is because practically nobody wants them, even though I understand the convenience of having all that stuff at your fingertips. My X30, when I gave it to my uncle, had a passive Schatten HFN pickup. Similar to a K&K in that it's a passive SBT. However, tonally they're much better (IMO) and sounds more like a mic than the Baggs Anthem system. I've used or heard or tried practically all the pickup systems over the years and this HFN to me is the best. It will also pick up the percussive sounds that you mentioned with ease.

For my X20 I installed the Schatten HFN Artist plus 2 version which is able to be powered by phantom power (which I'm using) or a 9v battery. This version comes with the option to add a 2nd pickup, which I did. This version offers only onboard volume controls which is all I need as I don't have to EQ the HFN to get the sound I want.

For you I would recommend the Schatten HFN Active version that has onboard tone and volume controls and uses a 9V battery. It's easy to install, you can do it yourself. For feedback rejection it was just behind the Fishman Matrix UST which I was very impressed with for a SBT. I was in the "pickup loop" for years and now consider myself out of it since discovering this pickup.
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Old 06-15-2019, 10:17 AM
nuttyprof nuttyprof is offline
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I would vote to just get rid of the x 7. The x10 is not much bigger, and is just so amazing for stage use. The size savings for travel is minimal.
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Old 06-15-2019, 11:48 AM
EvanB EvanB is offline
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I'm sort of with the Nutty Professor. I have the thin-bodied electric 7 with an active Barbera pickup and onboard volume and tone controls. I really the pickup system, but I think I'd prefer a bit more bout and have an X10 on order. If the X10 is as good as I hope it will be I'll probably end up keeping the 10. That's a guess since I have come to really the 7 and could maybe keep it as a hang-around for occasional use.
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Old 06-15-2019, 12:24 PM
AZLiberty AZLiberty is offline
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K&K sells a kit to upgrade the Pure Mini to the Trinity which allows you to blend in an internal mic.

Don't know if that would do it, but it's an option.
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Old 06-15-2019, 12:36 PM
Danz567 Danz567 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GuitarLuva View Post
Just an FYI the reason barn door style preamps are hard to get now is because practically nobody wants them, even though I understand the convenience of having all that stuff at your fingertips. My X30, when I gave it to my uncle, had a passive Schatten HFN pickup. Similar to a K&K in that it's a passive SBT. However, tonally they're much better (IMO) and sounds more like a mic than the Baggs Anthem system. I've used or heard or tried practically all the pickup systems over the years and this HFN to me is the best. It will also pick up the percussive sounds that you mentioned with ease.

For my X20 I installed the Schatten HFN Artist plus 2 version which is able to be powered by phantom power (which I'm using) or a 9v battery. This version comes with the option to add a 2nd pickup, which I did. This version offers only onboard volume controls which is all I need as I don't have to EQ the HFN to get the sound I want.

For you I would recommend the Schatten HFN Active version that has onboard tone and volume controls and uses a 9V battery. It's easy to install, you can do it yourself. For feedback rejection it was just behind the Fishman Matrix UST which I was very impressed with for a SBT. I was in the "pickup loop" for years and now consider myself out of it since discovering this pickup.
I was not happy with the Anthem system in my X20. I had it removed and a Schatten HFN Active installed and am very happy with it. Itís quite inexpensive too which was a bonus.
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Old 06-16-2019, 05:59 AM
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Methos1979 Methos1979 is offline
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Lot's of great suggestions here. An active Schatten system is something I've considered but thought it might be too close to what the K&K already gives me. I've been waiting to see if the 'flavor of the month' charm wore off the Schattens. I might just install a UST of some type as I can do that without removing the K&K. Turning it into a Trinity is an option but I believe that then requires an external preamp which I'm trying to get away from.

Selling it off is an option but I do need something as a backup to the X10 and I like carbon fiber. I was considering yet another custom Emerald but as those of us who have gone down this rabbit hole before, let alone more than once, know this is an expensive crapshoot trying to guess what you think will be the ultimate combination of everything you want and then something is always not perfect.

I've got a person that wants to buy it pretty bad and I've got a good idea for an inexpensive guitar that would serve as a decent backup but I'm still so torn.
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Old 06-16-2019, 06:15 AM
jonfields45 jonfields45 is offline
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For those of you considering the Schatten HFN, you must expect to need EQ. After EQ it sounds great, but I did have an out come on my two Rainsong parlors which is hard to explain:

https://www.acousticguitarforum.com/...d.php?t=549631

The EQ required is achievable with mixer or amp tone controls. I have a Zoom G1four handy and I used it's Boss GE7 model which might give the impression that 7 band EQ is a requirement.
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Last edited by jonfields45; 06-16-2019 at 06:55 AM.
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  #10  
Old 06-16-2019, 07:32 AM
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Methos1979 Methos1979 is offline
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I'm almost positive I have a Fishman Matrix Infinity UST laying around somewhere. I used to have one that came with a guitar I bought and I know I never installed it nor did I sell it off. If I can find that, I might go ahead and install it since I could do so relatively easily and without removing the K&K.
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