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Any luck making piezo sound better?

Discussion in 'Acoustic Heaven' started by Danjabellza, Feb 6, 2018.

  1. Teleterr

    Teleterr Friend of Leo's

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    I made a Hot Dots (Carbon piezos w a bad s/n ratio) solid body guitar w in Bridge and in Fingerboard dots. Either alone sounded good, but together much better. The tinniness was greatly reduced. Since then I ve done accoustics w a piezos on the Bridge and on the Headstock, again a more 3D soundstage w-out the thin/Tinny sound.
     
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  2. Vizcaster

    Vizcaster Poster Extraordinaire

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    I have a venue DI and I really like the idea of cutting the honky upper mids (which you might have even with a microphone) while boosting the lower mids for warmth without being woofy (technical terms, of course) and without the risk of feedback by boosting the bass. Onboard tuner and the feedback suppression (sweepable notch filter) are also useful, and there's an effects loop for delay or compression. There's a feature on the Roland acoustic amp where you can hit a stomp switch to activate the auto sweep to notch out feedback - I wish that was part of the DI pedal instead because the feedback may be coming from the amp but it's also being sent to the PA.

    They've since come out with the Session Di which has some processing (compression), and a new "Align" series of pedals for acoustics. The idea being that you might want to consider some degree of compression along with EQ.
     
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  3. Bendyha

    Bendyha Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    Just cushioning the piezo from the hard bone bridge with a strip of thin rubber cut from a washing-up glove can help more than one might expect, without changing the sound of the guitar or raising the string height much. Or try a thin strip of soft leather if rubber is not your thing. I have several friends who have tried this, and are happy with the improvement.
     
  4. popthree

    popthree Poster Extraordinaire

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    i got a new acoustic awhile back and put a K&K pure in it. It sounds excellent. i have yet to play out when at least 1 person didn't come up and ask me about the guitar and affirm the wonderful-ness(?) of its amplified sound. Now i can't even bring myself to play a piezo equipped acoustic through a PA.
     
  5. loco gringo

    loco gringo Tele-Holic Gold Supporter

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    http://www.tranceaudio.com/

    The best acoustic pickup I have ever used. It came in my Gibson Sheryl Crow Southern Jumbo. I didn't even plug it in at the store. I bought the guitar strictly on its acoustic merit. When I got home and plugged it in, it floored me.

    I usually just set my acoustic amp or the board flat and plug it in. Minor tweaking, if any, after that. Jackson Browne uses them, among other artists. Get the one with the tone and volume wheel.

    http://www.jamesmayengineering.com/

    I may put one of these in another guitar to try it. It's very similar to a K & K except it has a bass disc that is out of phase with the other discs to cut down on boominesss and reduce feedback issues.

    http://audiosprockets.com/

    Also something worth looking at. I have one, but haven't had time to play with it yet. I have a Gibson SJ100 that it very hard to amplify. It had a Fishman under saddle then a K & K. The K & K didn't work well with this guitar. I now have a new Fishman in it and am going to try this with it. I also have a K & K equipped guitar that I am going to try with it. I will probably try it on the Trance Amulet as well, just for the heck of it.
     
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  6. BryMelvin

    BryMelvin Friend of Leo's

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    I've retrofitted a lot of guitars with preamps that will take a piezo pickup and a condenser mike on a boom with a blend function.
     
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  7. Danjabellza

    Danjabellza Friend of Leo's

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    That really does sound great!!
     
  8. FMA

    FMA Poster Extraordinaire

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    Came here to say the same thing. Switched from a Baggs Para DI to a Radial after using one provided by a soundman. Sounded very nice with my Baggs Element-equipped J-45 and for me, anyway, it's easier to dial in than the Para DI.
     
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  9. schmee

    schmee Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    a Body Rez pedal helps. Adds some "richness" to your acoustic piezo. Very subtle though.
    I have learned to turn the "brilliance" slider all the way down on my onboard pre amps. Also back off on the treble a bit. I share your concern about the piezo tone, but I have been recording live gigs for a bit now and have been pleasantly surprised how good the guitar sound is on the recording. Not really that piezo twang I'm hearing on stage, much better.
    I've tried many other pickups (Baggs, Fishman etc) and came to the conclusion that the piezo is fine, and allows you to block the soundhole to eliminate feedback! it's all about EQ.
     
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  10. Unionjack515

    Unionjack515 Tele-Afflicted

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    A tip I picked up from Townshend’s setup too...running through a tube DI (loaded with a 12AU7) is a great way to bring some warmth to a sterile sounding piezo.
     
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  11. MLaVache

    MLaVache TDPRI Member

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    Third vote for the Bodyrez pedal. It's only $99 and has only one knob, but it sounds just wonderful.
     
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  12. Dingbat

    Dingbat Friend of Leo's

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    I'll jump on the Bodyrez bandwagon too, it really is quite good at taming a piezo sound.
     
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  13. still_fiddlin

    still_fiddlin Friend of Leo's Ad Free Member

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    That's essentially what the Fishman Aura system is. You can blend between the UST and IR, which is created from a recorded "image" of the guitar.

    They earlier incarnations of these were in the top of the Martin Grand Performing (Performance?) series, like the GPCPA1 (and now discontinued PA2/PA3 models). I have a Martin GPCPA3 and I continue to get comments about how good it sounds no matter what I play through, and even offers to buy the guitar. But, the initial design is too complex and Martin/Fishman have continued to tweak and simplify it, first with the Aura+, and now with the Aura VT Enhance, so instead of 7 different microphone IRs and B/M/T control on both the IR and UST (!) like in my PA3, the new GPC-35E (e.g.) eliminates all those options, and has just a U87 based IR with a single tone knob. I haven't played one, but I've heard it's still quite good.

    The other thing to understand that if you're playing out, a purely mic'd guitar, or even an emulated one, usually doesn't work as well, because it's not going to "cut through" even [solo] the crowd noise, never mind if you're playing in any kind of ensemble/band. So, a tiny bit of UST edge is not necessarily bad. (IMO, anyway.)
     
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  14. Old Tele man

    Old Tele man Friend of Leo's

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    Add a piezo-tweeter across your amp's speaker...via in-line capacitor.
     
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  15. Paul in Colorado

    Paul in Colorado Telefied Ad Free Member

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    The guitar I use the most is a Taylor 812C with a factory installed Fishman under saddle pickup with no onboard electronics. I use the first version of Baggs Para-Acoustic preamp (no XLR out) and get a remarkably good sound out of it. My 12 string and the Gurion acoustic I had both had Highlander under saddle pickups with a 9V preamp built into the endpin jack assembly. It has a jack to add a mini mic, but I've never felt the need to add one. I'm not up to date on acoustic pickup technology, but what I have works well for me.
     
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  16. Mad Kiwi

    Mad Kiwi Friend of Leo's

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    I have been VERY pleased with my Epiphone Masterbuilt guitar. it has a slide to vary from the (I think ) piezo to some other type pickup (they call them nanoflex and nanomag whatever that is in real life..?), you can then balance the two. Wonderful guitar and really nice pickup system at an amazing price.
     
  17. loco gringo

    loco gringo Tele-Holic Gold Supporter

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  18. Jethro

    Jethro Tele-Afflicted

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    This is very interesting. I was looking seriously at putting the Trance System in my Martin D28 but ended up going with the Baggs Lyric. I'm fairly happy with it, but it really needs to be dialed in properly with a DI....once dialed in it's a pretty decent representation of a Mic'd guitar.

    I'm really intrigued with this Tone Dexter Unit....thanks for this info
     
  19. Dentron

    Dentron TDPRI Member

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    I wonder if it could make an electric guitar sound like an acoustic on that setting...
     
  20. gusfinley

    gusfinley Tele-Afflicted

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    When I was doing sound support in College, we did a lot of open mic nights and had a lot of people show up with cheap acoustic electrics and often a duo of them. They sounded like garbage. We would plug a compressor into the chain and compress the hell out of them to tame all the piezoness. If you have a compressor handy, give it a shot. It tames the harsh dynamics quite a bit.
     
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