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Author Topic: Wavelength vs K&K Mini in a Collings D1A  (Read 802 times)
dberch
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« on: December 14, 2007, 03:01:44 PM »

Some of you may recall comments I've made in the past on K&K pickups. I'm a big fan. Earlier this year I replaced the K&K in my Collings D1A with a Wavelength as an experiment. The maker, Rick Turner of D-Tar, claims excellent tone and increased volume without feedback.

Last night I went back to K&K. Here's a summary of the results of my experiment.

1. Wavelength is an EXCELLENT UST. It does have fantastic (if a bit generic) acoustic tone, for a UST.
2. In my experience the claims about being resistant to feed back were not true. I had serious low-register feedback on at least three occasions. On one of those occasions, I was forced to retire my D1A for the evening. I am now conviced suspicion that dreadnaughts are more feedaback prone than small bodies, no matter what pickup is installed.
3. The Wavelength's tone varies with string gauage. When I went from lights to mediums, the bass became monstrous, and the trebles started to quack a bit. I mentioned this on the D-Tar form, and part of Rick Turner's response was "here we go again," so I suspect he's aware of that issue. He suggested I make sure that the saddle was seated properly. I did, and it was. It still sounded good for a UST, however.
4. After installing the Wavelength, I thought I could hear a subtle difference in the unplugged tone. A bit more chimey or tinny. But I've got tinnitus (ringing in the ears) so I didn't think too much of it. Now, with the K&K back in, I can definitely hear improved tone, but it is subtle. Just a bit more oompf and fundamentals all the way around.

I have two shows this weekend. I'll report back on how it's doing with the re-installed K&K.

Oh, one other thing. The K&Ks were previously installed with tape. Now they are glued in. I'm a bit worried that this will give me too much low end. I'll report on that as well. My biggest regret is that I never thought to record the Wavelength direct. Doh!


C-ya 'round,
David
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dberch
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« Reply #1 on: December 19, 2007, 09:38:35 PM »

OK, three shows down with the glued in K&K minis. All I can say is: "Why did I wait so long???" It's good to have my D1A tone back, both unplugged and amplified. 'Nuff said. I love this guitar.

David
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Blue in VT
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« Reply #2 on: December 19, 2007, 10:31:04 PM »

Dave...

your comments....and more so the tunes youve posted here are certainly pushing me toward a K&K....someday...

glad it worked out for the best!!

Blue
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Denis
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« Reply #3 on: December 20, 2007, 01:27:29 PM »

Dave...

your comments....and more so the tunes youve posted here are certainly pushing me toward a K&K....someday...

glad it worked out for the best!!

Blue

Blue, the K&K, IMO, when matched with a K&K preamp, are just about the most natural and warm sounding live set ups I've ever heard.  Minimal changes to the guitar...just drilling the endpin hole to a 1/2" is about the biggest part of it.  No big hole cut out of the side, no loosening the strings to remove the batteries when they need to be changed...great sound.  A bit strong on the mids which means you roll off those a bit, nothing too complicated obviously.  I can't tell you how many times I've gotten compliments on my sound with both my L-03 and Martin 000-15S.  I plan on putting one in every guitar I ever buy from this point on.  Then the preamp can be used with all of them.  It's super easy to install and all you need is an acoustic amp or PA to plug into. 

I was getting a bit of distortion my last couple of gigs...no one else seemed to notice but me...then my buddy said that it could be the battery starting to go.  Changed to 9v inside the preamp and voila, it's clean and clear again.  ]

Dave, if it ain't broke, don't fix it.  K&K's always worked for you before, why tamper with it? 

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dberch
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« Reply #4 on: December 20, 2007, 02:19:41 PM »

Dave, if it ain't broke, don't fix it.  K&K's always worked for you before, why tamper with it? 
I know, I know.  bigrin  I do occasionally get feedback from the dreaded dreadnaught boom, and I thought the Wavelength might fix that with a minimal tone trade-off.  Wrong on both accounts.

Back to K&K, and boy am I glad.  +1 bowdown
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So many songs - so little time...
Finger Picking good Folk, Blues, Gospel, Roots, Rags, and Originals
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