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Author Topic: Piezo pickup, negative effect on tone?  (Read 2069 times)
ajchance
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« on: December 27, 2007, 04:40:58 PM »

I'm a newbie here and recently acquired a California LV-19 (previous owner of D-3, OM-3 and P-9) that had an LR Baggs I-beam installed, but not the accompaning undersaddle piezo.  I haven't had a chance to play it through our PA at church, but the previous owner told me that he got all he needed out of the I-beam without the piezo.  If I cave to my curiosity and install the piezo, will it change the vibration transmission to top significantly?  Just looking for someone's prior experience with before and after.
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MJG
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« Reply #1 on: December 27, 2007, 05:22:23 PM »

I am a worship leader myself and humbly offer my $.02.

With a soundboard transducer alone, you will have good, natural sounding acoustic tone.  However, you also have the potential of feedback - especially if playing in a loud full band or boomy sanctuary.  Also, a UST loses string definition and can get a bit muddy in a full band. 

A UST gives you more "bite", string definition and low feedback threshold - yet sounds more electric and "quacky" under aggressive strumming.

Without knowing your environment and application, this is hard to say. 

Personally, I would add the UST and preamp to convert the system to the LR Baggs i-Mix.  This will give you blending capability between the UST and SBT.  That way you can will have the bite needed for loud full band situations by dialing more of the UST or in quieter, more intimate, solo or duet situations, you can dial more towards the SBT pickup for more natural acoustic tone.

Now you have a system that will accommodate all environments and applications.

PM me if you wish for more info.

Blessings,
Mike
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ajchance
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« Reply #2 on: December 27, 2007, 05:43:56 PM »

Thanks for the response.  The previous owner had the i-mix system installed, but only with the I-beam.  The UST was in the pocket of the case!  I was actually more interested in how the unamplified tone of the guitar would potentially suffer from installing the UST.  I love the overtones this guitar has currently, but was concerned that putting a buffer between the saddle and the bridge would make a big difference. 
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el guitana
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« Reply #3 on: December 27, 2007, 05:46:41 PM »

I believe most of us would not notice a difference in the acoustic tone. That's not to say there isn't a difference - I'm sure there is, but many of us would not be sensitive to it.
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MJG
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« Reply #4 on: December 27, 2007, 05:59:56 PM »

I agree with el guitana...

When experimenting with my rosewood/sitka guitar, I did not notice a difference in tone by installing a UST.  I did notice a difference however from going from a tusq to bone saddle...but that's not the issue here.

Go for it!!!
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ajchance
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« Reply #5 on: December 27, 2007, 07:04:54 PM »

Sounds like I'll be taking the plunge!  Thanks for the comments. 

Mike, I tried to PM you, but I guess since I'm new it wouldn't give me that access.  You hit on the second part of this scenario that I was considering - changing the material of the saddle.  I have a friend who just bought a higher end Taylor and it has an amazing tone.  The seller commented that changing to a bone saddle made a huge difference in the guitar.  Any comments on different experiences with different materials? Thanks in advance.
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MJG
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« Reply #6 on: December 28, 2007, 05:31:01 AM »

Your LV-19 most likely has a bone saddle already.  Taylor's come with tusq, even the high end Taylors.  I switched out the tusq saddle on my '96 714 and it made a difference.  Honestly it was subtle at first, but later I put the tusq back in for giggles and at first strum, my son and I looked at each other and said - naaah, back to bone. 

If this guitar has a tusq saddle by chance, I would definitely switch to bone.  If you need a source, give me a shout via email in my profile.
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ajchance
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« Reply #7 on: December 28, 2007, 12:35:52 PM »

Still can't get to your profile, Mike!  How can you tell by looking at the saddle if it is bone or not?  The LV19 is a 2003 model and I've heard that Larivee didn't go to bone routinely for a couple of years after that.
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dgrose
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« Reply #8 on: December 28, 2007, 01:06:24 PM »

I was actually more interested in how the unamplified tone of the guitar would potentially suffer from installing the UST.

David Wren, the owner of The 12th Fret in Toronto, a former Larrivee employee and an amazing luthier on his own as well, was quoted as saying that there should be no difference if it is installed properly.

dg

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dberch
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« Reply #9 on: December 28, 2007, 03:02:20 PM »

David Wren, the owner of The 12th Fret in Toronto, a former Larrivee employee and an amazing luthier on his own as well, was quoted as saying that there should be no difference if it is installed properly.
Based on my experience I have to disagree.

There are many kinds of UST pickups and not all are piezo.  The hard piezo pickups like Fishman matrix will not harm your acoustic tone. There are also the thin flexible ones like b-band, which I have used and did not affect my tone at all. I just removed a D-Tar Wavelength from my Collings D1A, which is a woven metal mesh.  It is a fine quack-less UST in it's on right, but it had a definite negative affect on the tone of my D1A.  Subtle but definite.  With the Wavelength out, I noticed a slight improvemnt in bass response, and tightness of tone all around. More fundamental, if that makes sense.

David
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MJG
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« Reply #10 on: December 28, 2007, 03:28:26 PM »

Still can't get to your profile, Mike!  How can you tell by looking at the saddle if it is bone or not?  The LV19 is a 2003 model and I've heard that Larivee didn't go to bone routinely for a couple of years after that.

You may be correct about the tusq saddle.  But as the LV-19 was a special, I thought it was bone.  Email Larrivee customer service, via the website, the serial number and they can tell you.

Sorry that you are have trouble contacting me.  Hopefully you are clicking on my name "MJG" at the left of this post to open my provfile.  Those other icons are PM, email etc.

Here is the link to buy saddles - Bob is a great guy.  http://www.guitarsaddles.com/

Best,
Mike

PS - I just sent you a PM as well.
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Mike <><
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« Reply #11 on: December 29, 2007, 04:27:47 PM »


Sorry that you are have trouble contacting me.  Hopefully you are clicking on my name "MJG" at the left of this post to open my provfile.  Those other icons are PM, email etc.


MJG, newbies are not allowed access to PM's or member profiles. After ten posts the newbie status dissappears and access is allowed.

The LV19 is a 2003 model and I've heard that Larivee didn't go to bone routinely for a couple of years after that.


My LV-19 was started in production 09/2002 and it came with a  bone saddle.
If it looks like this it is bone. Notice the smoothness of the compensation for the B string.


If it looks like this it is Tusq

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Roger


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MJG
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« Reply #12 on: December 29, 2007, 04:31:26 PM »

Thanks Roger - very helpful post on all accounts.

Mike
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ajchance
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« Reply #13 on: December 31, 2007, 05:03:35 PM »

Thanks to all, again, for the help.  David, your comments were exactly what I was afraid of.  The LR baggs UST is a mesh style like you mentioned.  I'll play with the I-beam for a while and see how I like it.

The saddle is definitely bone (thanks for the pics) - I'm liking this guitar more and more!  What an amazing sound!

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AtlasHeating
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« Reply #14 on: January 02, 2008, 12:55:21 AM »

I think the UST is a good way to get a more usable sound from the guitar with out any loss of your un amplified sound.
My favorite system is the fishman blender. UST with a mic. Mine is the Ellipse with a soundhoe control.
The soundboard transducer that I have on my L-03 sounds nice but it does not sit well in the mix with other instruments
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aaronjnoone
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« Reply #15 on: January 02, 2008, 02:05:20 PM »

I think the UST is a good way to get a more usable sound from the guitar with out any loss of your un amplified sound.
My favorite system is the fishman blender. UST with a mic. Mine is the Ellipse with a soundhoe control.
The soundboard transducer that I have on my L-03 sounds nice but it does not sit well in the mix with other instruments

Hey Atlas, which guitar has the Ellipse? I tried putting one in my D03 and couldn't do it due to its bracing coming so close to the soundhole. I ended up with a Baggs dual source, which is awesome too. My LV05 has a Fishman blender on it with barn-door, but I always liked the Ellipse for the simple option of mic placement.

One more question, did you install it, or did you witness the installation? I am wondering how it went in there with the Larrivee bracing.

Thanks,
Aaron
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AtlasHeating
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« Reply #16 on: January 03, 2008, 12:13:50 AM »

Unfortunately the Blender is on the Martin HD -28. I installed half of the system. The UST was already installed so I bought the upgrade to the ellipse. The installation was horrible! I had to take out the power jack and remove a chip from the circuit board and solder another on on. Also the first one that came was defective so I had to re install a replacement. I almost think it would be better to cut a barn door and put all of the controls in the side vs hanging it from the soundboard. I don't think it has dropped tha volume any but you never know.
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