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  #16  
Old 05-24-2018, 03:16 PM
Chriscom Chriscom is offline
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I'm presently working with a forum member who has developed custom IR files for me to use with another smaller preamp system.

The mad scientist side of martingitdave. Scary or frightening, choose one.

What an incredible level of detail on your EQ tweaking! Thanks for posting.
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  #17  
Old 05-24-2018, 03:52 PM
troggg troggg is offline
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Originally Posted by Mr. Jelly View Post
One aspect is the guitars that are being played. Double 0 guitars are better balanced as a whole and aren't as difficult to get similar sounds. Dreads are not the guitars for these types of systems.
Respectfully disagree.
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  #18  
Old 05-24-2018, 04:02 PM
troggg troggg is offline
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Originally Posted by martingitdave View Post
Impedance

Much has been written on the topic. Simply put, try to use preamps that have an input impedance of 400KOhm to 1MOhm. Too little impedance and you get too little bass. Too much impedance and you get too much bass. And, we're talking about losing or gaining information for the whole low end below 250 Hz.

From memory:

If you go into the setup menu and choose advanced editing for body rez you will get the following EQ toys to play with:

Low shelving EQ
High shelving EQ
(2) Parametric mid frequency controls.

These toys, plus some sort of ambiance reverb effect which I assume is used to increase sustain, are "BodyRez." And, yes, you can do this on your own if you want to. But, they generally do a nice job of knowing where the hot spots are.

If you are not familiar with a parametric EQ, they can seem a little intimidating. But, armed with a little background, it's actually quite simple.

Here is a link to explain how a parametric EQ works:

https://www.wikihow.com/Use-a-Parametric-Equalizer

My recommendation for EQ it to use it surgically. I seldom add. I use it to take away.

TC Helicon Tricks for EQ

TC seems to do somethings a little different from others. They like to use two mid frequency bands with a Q of 2.04 centered around ~500Hz and ~900Hz. These two work in tandem to create a wave shape in the mid that eats away at the annoying frequencies pickups produce. You can use one or both. Most analog parametric EQ products use a wider bandwidth Q of 1.0. In my experience, the ~2 range is actually better. So, here I agree with TC Helicon. That said, all of this is totally adjustable to your taste.

What I do:

1. I use a compact PA system with a built in digital mixer. It includes a real time analyzer function that lets you visualize the frequencies in real time. You can get an idea of where you might need to notch for feedback, or where you might have some spikes in your signal that need to be tamed.

2. Play through the 5 Body Rez shapes and pick the one that sounds the best to you overall. This is just a starting point. Don't get too hung up on perfectionism.

3. Go to the advanced pages in the menu. Start with the shelves. If you want a little more bottom end, or top end, start by bumping the gain 1-2 dB at a time and play a little. Once you get it where you generally like it, try moving the shelf frequency a few clicks in each direction. When you increase the low shelf you are starting the bass boost a little "earlier" and vice versa.

4. The mids is where the money is. When you cycle through those 5 pre-programmed settings to choose which you like better, mostly you are hearing the result of the sweepable mids. Just like the shelves, you can play with these too. It's important to make one change at a time and play a little to hear what you've done. For instance, you can decrease the Q value to make the cut wider. Or, like in my case, I will shift the center frequency for the mid cut a few clicks in either direction and listen with each click. You'll be surprised what a 40 Hz shift can make. If you want to net out a cut altogether, you can just change the gain to zero, and it is effectively off.

What a K&K needs:

This is debatable, but what I hear is this:

1. The K&K acts sort of like an internal microphone. It picks up a lot of low and low mid frequencies that are bouncing all around the inside of the guitar and reflecting off the back, etc. This is unlike an under-saddle pickup that mostly "hears" the strings. I call this "mud."

2. People argue that the K&K is all mud and no highs. I agree to a certain extent. But, like a mic, once you surgically remove the mud from the signal you can suddenly hear all the highs that have always been there, but where hidden under the mud.

3. Depending on the guitar, I hear at least two "humps" of mud. One hump in in the low end (below 250Hz or 150 Hz in feedback range) and a second hump in my dreadnought shaped guitars around 800 Hz. The first hump is usually due to the resonant frequency of the guitar. The second I attribute to listening from inside the guitar. Once you remove those, it sounds much more natural to me and the highs start to come through. This is important because most mixing boards have a wide Q mid frequency adjustment that is centered around 2.5KHz. That's way too high to be effective at removing any mud from the K&K. And, the lows are centered around 80Hz, which is way too low for the shelving filter to be effective. That's why lots of players opt for mixers with a sweepable mid frequency.

4. Some might hear a third hump around 1KHz, 1.5KHz, or 2KHz. I would be hesitant to cut much up at the higher mid frequencies because those help a pickup cut through the noise.

5. The highs might still be a litle too weak to cut through the mix, so feel free to bump those a dB or several according to taste.

OR

Buy a ToneDexter, which has the equivalent of 2000 parametric EQ bands that get automatically set by the computer to mimic what it hears from a microphone. It does this magic in about 2 minutes, and it doesn't cost much more than most of the parametric EQs out there. And, as a bonus, it was designed for 1MOhm impedance because the creator is a fan of the K&K style pickup.

Either way, you'll be doing fine from the audience's perspective.
Muchos gracias for what promises to be hours of tweaking fun! Really appreciate the tips!

For anyone considering buying a K&K Pure Mini: as with any pickup, you get to choose your own level of compulsion for fine-tuning it regarding how it's amplified and how it's EQed. I asked for a compulsive response, and Dave provided a great one. However, please don't ignore what I already mentioned, that as long as you have some way to cut low mids, or the place you're playing has a mixing board, then 99.999% of the audience is going to respond based on your performance and the connection they feel, not on how well your guitar is EQed.

Of course it is also true that the more comfortable you feel with your sound the better you perform; that said, there are times that I haven't been comfortable with my sound and got a really positive response ... and vice-versa!
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  #19  
Old 05-24-2018, 05:10 PM
BluesKing777 BluesKing777 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by martingitdave View Post
Impedance

Much has been written on the topic. Simply put, try to use preamps that have an input impedance of 400KOhm to 1MOhm. Too little impedance and you get too little bass. Too much impedance and you get too much bass. And, we're talking about losing or gaining information for the whole low end below 250 Hz.

From memory:

If you go into the setup menu and choose advanced editing for body rez you will get the following EQ toys to play with:

Low shelving EQ
High shelving EQ
(2) Parametric mid frequency controls.

These toys, plus some sort of ambiance reverb effect which I assume is used to increase sustain, are "BodyRez." And, yes, you can do this on your own if you want to. But, they generally do a nice job of knowing where the hot spots are.

If you are not familiar with a parametric EQ, they can seem a little intimidating. But, armed with a little background, it's actually quite simple.

Here is a link to explain how a parametric EQ works:

https://www.wikihow.com/Use-a-Parametric-Equalizer

My recommendation for EQ it to use it surgically. I seldom add. I use it to take away.

TC Helicon Tricks for EQ

TC seems to do somethings a little different from others. They like to use two mid frequency bands with a Q of 2.04 centered around ~500Hz and ~900Hz. These two work in tandem to create a wave shape in the mid that eats away at the annoying frequencies pickups produce. You can use one or both. Most analog parametric EQ products use a wider bandwidth Q of 1.0. In my experience, the ~2 range is actually better. So, here I agree with TC Helicon. That said, all of this is totally adjustable to your taste.

What I do:

1. I use a compact PA system with a built in digital mixer. It includes a real time analyzer function that lets you visualize the frequencies in real time. You can get an idea of where you might need to notch for feedback, or where you might have some spikes in your signal that need to be tamed.

2. Play through the 5 Body Rez shapes and pick the one that sounds the best to you overall. This is just a starting point. Don't get too hung up on perfectionism.

3. Go to the advanced pages in the menu. Start with the shelves. If you want a little more bottom end, or top end, start by bumping the gain 1-2 dB at a time and play a little. Once you get it where you generally like it, try moving the shelf frequency a few clicks in each direction. When you increase the low shelf you are starting the bass boost a little "earlier" and vice versa.

4. The mids is where the money is. When you cycle through those 5 pre-programmed settings to choose which you like better, mostly you are hearing the result of the sweepable mids. Just like the shelves, you can play with these too. It's important to make one change at a time and play a little to hear what you've done. For instance, you can decrease the Q value to make the cut wider. Or, like in my case, I will shift the center frequency for the mid cut a few clicks in either direction and listen with each click. You'll be surprised what a 40 Hz shift can make. If you want to net out a cut altogether, you can just change the gain to zero, and it is effectively off.

What a K&K needs:

This is debatable, but what I hear is this:

1. The K&K acts sort of like an internal microphone. It picks up a lot of low and low mid frequencies that are bouncing all around the inside of the guitar and reflecting off the back, etc. This is unlike an under-saddle pickup that mostly "hears" the strings. I call this "mud."

2. People argue that the K&K is all mud and no highs. I agree to a certain extent. But, like a mic, once you surgically remove the mud from the signal you can suddenly hear all the highs that have always been there, but where hidden under the mud.

3. Depending on the guitar, I hear at least two "humps" of mud. One hump in in the low end (below 250Hz or 150 Hz in feedback range) and a second hump in my dreadnought shaped guitars around 800 Hz. The first hump is usually due to the resonant frequency of the guitar. The second I attribute to listening from inside the guitar. Once you remove those, it sounds much more natural to me and the highs start to come through. This is important because most mixing boards have a wide Q mid frequency adjustment that is centered around 2.5KHz. That's way too high to be effective at removing any mud from the K&K. And, the lows are centered around 80Hz, which is way too low for the shelving filter to be effective. That's why lots of players opt for mixers with a sweepable mid frequency.

4. Some might hear a third hump around 1KHz, 1.5KHz, or 2KHz. I would be hesitant to cut much up at the higher mid frequencies because those help a pickup cut through the noise.

5. The highs might still be a litle too weak to cut through the mix, so feel free to bump those a dB or several according to taste.

OR

Buy a ToneDexter, which has the equivalent of 2000 parametric EQ bands that get automatically set by the computer to mimic what it hears from a microphone. It does this magic in about 2 minutes, and it doesn't cost much more than most of the parametric EQs out there. And, as a bonus, it was designed for 1MOhm impedance because the creator is a fan of the K&K style pickup.

Either way, you'll be doing fine from the audience's perspective.





Great, thanks Dave but I sold mine and bought the Boss VE-8...same digital eq problems!

I saw and use a fantastic setup tip with the Boss VE-8 - make a loop! Then you can alter every little thing you like while the loop plays the guitar for you! Cool!

My Tonedexter still needs an EQ box/mixer/amp settings.....



BluesKing777.
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  #20  
Old 05-24-2018, 05:13 PM
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martingitdave martingitdave is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BluesKing777 View Post
Great, thanks Dave but I sold mine and bought the Boss VE-8...same digital eq problems!



I saw and use a fantastic setup tip with the Boss VE-8 - make a loop! Then you can alter every little thing you like while the loop plays the guitar for you! Cool!



My Tonedexter still needs an EQ box/mixer/amp settings.....







BluesKing777.


Good tip! I just got my Dexter. Im no authority on that magic box yet. It took me 4 years to figure out the Play Acoustic. Lol
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  #21  
Old 05-24-2018, 08:09 PM
CycleBob CycleBob is offline
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Thanks for the good conversation. Its largely above my head, but I will say that the Pure mini is a bit heavier on bass than Id like without any adjustment. Thus far Ive just turned the bass knob down a bit on the amp. Do other K&K pick up users use some sort of preamp to adjust eq before the signal gets to your main amp? Sorry for my lack of knowledge here. Still learning...
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  #22  
Old 05-24-2018, 09:40 PM
troggg troggg is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CycleBob View Post
Thanks for the good conversation. It’s largely above my head, but I will say that the Pure mini is a bit heavier on bass than I’d like without any adjustment. Thus far I’ve just turned the bass knob down a bit on the amp. Do other K&K pick up users use some sort of preamp to adjust eq before the signal gets to your main amp? Sorry for my lack of knowledge here. Still learning...
Well there's preamps, there are devices that provide EQ, and there are combo units which do both. You don't need a preamp to reduce bass. You need EQ.

Preamps in addition to amplifying the signal can also be helpful at matching impedance (which is something else you'll want to learn about) depending on the device. In a nutshell, an impedance match means the Out from one device plays nice with the In from the device it's connected to. In other words, it sounds "right." Direct boxes are other candidates to match your K&K's 1 ohm.

But your main problem you're posting about seems to be reducing bass. There are a million different ways -- in all sizes and budgets -- to alter EQ.
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  #23  
Old 05-25-2018, 05:01 AM
Mr. Jelly Mr. Jelly is offline
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I think I'm going to get a K & K mini XLR preamp. It sounds like the answer. The unit is not perfect from my understanding but it does sound like it solves the sound issues.
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  #24  
Old 05-25-2018, 06:57 AM
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martingitdave martingitdave is offline
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Originally Posted by Mr. Jelly View Post
I think I'm going to get a K & K mini XLR preamp. It sounds like the answer. The unit is not perfect from my understanding but it does sound like it solves the sound issues.

Seems reasonable. The XLR option gives you the ability to go directly to mixing board with a long XLR cable. Otherwise the Pure preamp will work well.
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