The Acoustic Guitar Forum

Go Back   The Acoustic Guitar Forum > General Acoustic Guitar and Amplification Discussion > Acoustic Amplification

Reply
 
Thread Tools
  #1  
Old 01-01-2019, 09:23 AM
YamahaGuy YamahaGuy is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Dec 2016
Location: Ohio the heart of it all
Posts: 1,519
Default $10 K&K / JJB clone

I ordered off Amazon a $10 3-piezo transducer acoustic guitar pickup. I'll be installing it on an Oscar Schmidt laminate dreadnaught once it arrives. Stay tuned for more...

I'm going to be putting a pickup in my Eastman 1 OM but don't want to spend $75 or more on a pickup if I don't have to.
__________________
FG700S (sold)
FG230 (sold)
FG75 (sold)
CPX700IIs-12 (sold)
FG160 (wall hanger)
LL16M ARE (sold)
AC3R gen 1 (sold)
A5R (sold)
FGX730SC
LLX6A
CSF1M TBS
A1M
FGX5
Revstar 502T
Pacifica 012
Weddington Special

Eastman E1OM

Ibanez AW54CE
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 01-01-2019, 11:13 AM
gfirob gfirob is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2017
Location: Central Vermont
Posts: 547
Default

I've seen those for sale and have been curious. Let us know how it sounds. I have K&K's in three guitars and I have been preparing to put them in a '50's Gibson.
__________________
2003 Martin OM-42, K&K's
1932 National Style O, K&K's
1936 Kalamazoo KG-14, K&K's
1957 National 1155 (Gibson J45 body, National neck) K&K's
1967 Gretsch 6120 Chet Atkins Nashville
2005 Warmoth Telecaster, Lindy Fralins
Ear Trumpet Labs Edwina
Tonedexter
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 01-01-2019, 12:41 PM
wood nacho wood nacho is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Canada
Posts: 481
Default

My understanding is that the difference between these cheap cheap piezo discs and a system such as the K&K PWM is the quality/consistency of the discs themselves. There can be big tonal differences between each disc with the cheap ones. I've yet to confirm this but it is what I've heard from more reputable sources.

I've been more interested lately in piezo FILM. The kind of stuff that Pickup-The-World uses in their pickups. You can buy very cheap piezo film tabs like this...




...and shield them/wire them to a jack to get a musical instrument pickup. Or you can buy them shielded (much more expensive but still much cheap than a off the shelf pickup) and wire it to a jack and you are good to go. This shielded piezo film tab (below) can be bought for around 40-50$. It is the exact same pickup that K&K uses as part of their 'Definity' system.



https://kksound.com/products/definity.php

I'll be trying out this piezo film tab pickup in the near future and building my own phantom powered piezo buffer to go along with it. Here is the design i'll be using. Very inexpensive, fun, and functional.

https://www.zachpoff.com/resources/a...-preamplifier/
__________________

Last edited by wood nacho; 01-01-2019 at 12:48 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 01-01-2019, 02:10 PM
shufflebeat shufflebeat is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: May 2016
Posts: 200
Default

Watching with interest.
__________________
Give a man a fishing rod... and he's got the makings of a rudimentary banjo.
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 01-01-2019, 02:48 PM
The Kid! The Kid! is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jul 2015
Location: Buffalo, NY
Posts: 1,655
Default

The discs themselves are not expensive at all. We may be paying more for advertising and the time it takes to quality check the individual discs from companies like K&K.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 01-01-2019, 07:52 PM
Rudy4 Rudy4 is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Posts: 2,249
Default

I've been playing with piezo-based transducers for years and had instructions up at a website for how to make them to incorporate a ground shield. If you don't shield the active side they'll hum like a banshee.

When you factor in the piezo disc, adding the connecting cable, and a good quality Fishman output jack you don't save much from what a K&K single transducer and jack costs.

You'll also find that you can get away with using a high quality 10 foot guitar cable to feed a signal to something that will impedance match the transducer without the need for active electronics or preamp within the instrument. It just greatly uncomplicates the whole thing and does away with creating that nasty RC high pass filter with the cable capacitance and high resistance value of the actual disc.
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 01-01-2019, 08:12 PM
YamahaGuy YamahaGuy is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Dec 2016
Location: Ohio the heart of it all
Posts: 1,519
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rudy4 View Post
I've been playing with piezo-based transducers for years and had instructions up at a website for how to make them to incorporate a ground shield. If you don't shield the active side they'll hum like a banshee.

When you factor in the piezo disc, adding the connecting cable, and a good quality Fishman output jack you don't save much from what a K&K single transducer and jack costs.

You'll also find that you can get away with using a high quality 10 foot guitar cable to feed a signal to something that will impedance match the transducer without the need for active electronics or preamp within the instrument. It just greatly uncomplicates the whole thing and does away with creating that nasty RC high pass filter with the cable capacitance and high resistance value of the actual disc.
Are you suggesting the use of a DI box? If so, passive or active? I have both. I also have a Baggs Para on my small pedal board I planned on using when not using a DI.
__________________
FG700S (sold)
FG230 (sold)
FG75 (sold)
CPX700IIs-12 (sold)
FG160 (wall hanger)
LL16M ARE (sold)
AC3R gen 1 (sold)
A5R (sold)
FGX730SC
LLX6A
CSF1M TBS
A1M
FGX5
Revstar 502T
Pacifica 012
Weddington Special

Eastman E1OM

Ibanez AW54CE
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 01-01-2019, 08:30 PM
Mandobart Mandobart is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Washington State
Posts: 1,571
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rudy4 View Post
....When you factor in the piezo disc, adding the connecting cable, and a good quality Fishman output jack you don't save much from what a K&K single transducer and jack costs.

You'll also find that you can get away with using a high quality 10 foot guitar cable to feed a signal to something that will impedance match the transducer without the need for active electronics or preamp within the instrument. It just greatly uncomplicates the whole thing and does away with creating that nasty RC high pass filter with the cable capacitance and high resistance value of the actual disc.
Jessie at JJB has come up with a way to produce and sell high quality piezo transducers with a jack extremely like a Fishman switchcraft for $50 USD. Equivalent K&K is a little over $140. That's a $90 savings. I've used a K&K on my first electrified instrument. It works and sounds great. I've used JJB in about 20 other instruments over the past 10 years. They also sound and work great. That's $1800 saved.
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 01-02-2019, 09:39 AM
Rudy4 Rudy4 is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Posts: 2,249
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mandobart View Post
Jessie at JJB has come up with a way to produce and sell high quality piezo transducers with a jack extremely like a Fishman switchcraft for $50 USD. Equivalent K&K is a little over $140. That's a $90 savings. I've used a K&K on my first electrified instrument. It works and sounds great. I've used JJB in about 20 other instruments over the past 10 years. They also sound and work great. That's $1800 saved.
I just installed my 7th K&K Pure Mini, the "$140 K&K" you referanced. First, it's commonly available from a popular AGF sponsor for $90 (if you request the AGF member discount), shipping included.

Second, the OP posted a link to a single transducer system, which K&K markets a couple of different varieties of. Their smaller disc universal lists on the K&K website for $59 if you select the Fishman built-in jack option.

https://kksound.com/products/hotspot.php

They are available with lower street pricing which puts them at $50.

If you're relating a single disc installation as the OP asked about then it totals zero dollars saved, not including any assembly labor.
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 01-02-2019, 10:18 AM
Monsum Monsum is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: May 2015
Posts: 376
Default

I've tried a similar, very cheap SBT pickup (I think they were less than $10) in my laminate EKO guitar.
Here is a direct, dry and then processed (second half of the clip) signal:

Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 01-02-2019, 11:01 AM
BT55's Avatar
BT55 BT55 is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2016
Location: NY
Posts: 1,414
Default $10 K&K / JJB clone

Regardless of the SBT you use the installation is the same. You can buy a no name eBay clone for $10 or a known quality JJB for $50 or K&K for $90. Either way youll need a pre-amp. If cost was my main purchase factor Id install a JJB.
__________________
Taylor V-Class 814ce, 717e BE WHB, 520ce, 454ce, 420 Cedar\Maple, T5z Classic
Martin D18E Retro
Emerald X20
Rainsong H-OM1000N2
Voyage-Air VAD-04
Custom Les Paul
Hot Rod Deville 410, Fishman Loudbox Performer
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 01-04-2019, 04:21 PM
YamahaGuy YamahaGuy is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Dec 2016
Location: Ohio the heart of it all
Posts: 1,519
Default Update

So the pickup arrived in the mail in an Amazon manilla envelope with six cheap picks the pickup, a small zip tie, and a wire keeper.

No instructions.

I watched several install videos of JJB and/or K&K so that was no problem.

I was so anxious to install this I took very few precautions. My half inch hole in the bottom of the guitar was not level. The puddy technique everyone uses was a bust.

I did use super glue gel right over top the self adhesive 3m tape on the pickups.

After I got superglue all over my fingers, I managed to glue each pickup in place but I had to place them (toward the bottom.of the guitar-not under the saddle) behind the bridge pins to get them to fit.

Hindsight being 20/20 I should have had all six bridge pins in when I did this since one of the disks was blocking the bridge pin from going in.

I forced the pin through which probably bent the pickup.

Anyway, after the dust settled and the glue dried I reinstalled the strings I'd just put on the guitar. I ate dinner, hoped for the worst but expected the best.

So I hooked up a Samson active DI to my mixer, turned on phantom power, made sure the DI box was on, muted the channel, got all plugged in, and went for it.

For $10, you cannot go wrong. I've heard K&K equipped guitars live that sounded good and ones that sounded terrible (probably not using DI).

The sound is GREAT! As full as my Yamaha A1M. Obviously not any adjustability unless your mixer strip has it (mine does). But even my wife agreed instantly that we have a winner! Not a hint of piezo quack. Perfect balance across all six strings. Tapping/percussive sounds are picked up. The string squeak is picked up as well.

I did try going direct to the mixer without the DI and it sounded terrible. Very thin and tinny.

Back to the DI, a full robust sound. I will be trying it again tomorrow with a passive DI as well as my LR Baggs Para DI.

Stay tuned for sound clips in the next couple days.

Keep in mind the test guitar is an Oscar Schmidt $100 laminate dreadnaught.

I am super pumped. I will be installing another one in my Eastman E1OM soon. Hopefully I will take a little more care installing that one.
__________________
FG700S (sold)
FG230 (sold)
FG75 (sold)
CPX700IIs-12 (sold)
FG160 (wall hanger)
LL16M ARE (sold)
AC3R gen 1 (sold)
A5R (sold)
FGX730SC
LLX6A
CSF1M TBS
A1M
FGX5
Revstar 502T
Pacifica 012
Weddington Special

Eastman E1OM

Ibanez AW54CE
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 01-04-2019, 10:51 PM
ac ac is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 1,571
Default

Could you give us a link to the clone you bought?

I think I have just the beater that could use one.
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 01-05-2019, 04:55 AM
Cuki79 Cuki79 is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Posts: 1,097
Default



You can even dip then to make them look like K&K. (In the video, he coats both face but I think K&K are top coated only)
__________________
Martin D-18 (2012) Lyric gilgaus mod + EPSI IR
Martin HD-28 (2014) Trance Audio Amulet M-V T+ DIY Axoloti IR
Eastman E6OM (2019) DIY Pickup v5
Taylor GS Mini-e Bass (2017)

Gibson Les Paul Standard 1958 Reissue (2013)
Fender Stratocaster American Vintage 1954 (2014)
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 01-05-2019, 05:36 AM
YamahaGuy YamahaGuy is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Dec 2016
Location: Ohio the heart of it all
Posts: 1,519
Default

Here is the one I bought

Self-adhesive Pickups Piezo Transducer with 6PCS Celluloid Guitar Picks, 3 in 1 Microphone Contact & Endpin Jack 1/4" for Electronic Acoustic Guitar Violin Ukulele https://www.amazon.com/dp/B073ZH1FNX..._cskmCbAZMGYRM
__________________
FG700S (sold)
FG230 (sold)
FG75 (sold)
CPX700IIs-12 (sold)
FG160 (wall hanger)
LL16M ARE (sold)
AC3R gen 1 (sold)
A5R (sold)
FGX730SC
LLX6A
CSF1M TBS
A1M
FGX5
Revstar 502T
Pacifica 012
Weddington Special

Eastman E1OM

Ibanez AW54CE
Reply With Quote
Reply

  The Acoustic Guitar Forum > General Acoustic Guitar and Amplification Discussion > Acoustic Amplification

Thread Tools



All times are GMT -6. The time now is 06:35 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, The Acoustic Guitar Forum
vB Ad Management by =RedTyger=