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Author Topic: Pickup & DI for OM-02?  (Read 3956 times)
guitarman001
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« on: June 12, 2016, 10:51:31 AM »

Hello!

Will try to keep this short... I own a Larrivee OM-02. Absolutely fantastic.

Canadian made (I don't know if there is a difference between Canadian made and US-made)...

Prior to my main topic of discussion, just want to say this is great for fingerstyle but when I try to bellow out chords, it can "distort" a little - think I need to look at a rosewood model? Regardless, I love the satin nature of this guitar. It sounds incredible - much better (and better price!) than other big brands.

I need to get a pickup fitted and need advice. I play in a rock band so it will be used for the quieter sections, but also maybe during louder sections.


K&K Pure Mini I keep reading is fantastic, a bit bassy but you can dial that out with your DI box. Because it's body mounted, it picks up body taps (not that I do a lot). However I've heard it is more prone to feedback than other pickups in louder settings,. Thing I like is that it is non-invasive when compared to a sound-hole pickup.

I think I want to steer clear of anything with a mic for feedback reasons (shame, as the Lyric gets good reviews).
Other main option (other than anything you may suggest) is the LR Baggs M80. I'd probably use it in passive mode (no battery worries) with a DI box. Soundhole, so invasive. Might not pick up body taps? Worried it might be more metallic sounding than the K&K. Unsure about this.

In either case I'm going to have to widen the end-hole and fit a strap button into the neck heel.

As for DI.... I'm thinking Baggs Para DI or something by Red Eye.... though I think Red Eye doesn't have a bass control which wouldn't be able to dial out the bass a bit if I went for the K&K.

Suggestions welcome!

My guitar:
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tuffythepug
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« Reply #1 on: June 12, 2016, 05:47:07 PM »

First, welcome to the forum.    The question has been asked many times before.   You will find that there is no "right answer".  Everyone has their own preferences when it comes to adding a pickup.   Regarding your specific concerns..   Baggs DI is a good pre-amp that can be used with either the pure-western mini or other pickups.      As an example, I use the Baggs M1 passive pickup with the Baggs DI on my OM-03R.  This is good for cutting through the mix of other instruments with a bit of an electric feel to the tone in my experience.    The DI helps shape the sound to what you prefer.    I installed a pure-western mini on my 000-50MT because it liked the way it produced the natural  tone of the guitar without coloring it to any extent.
For a fingerpicking guitar, I think that is the best option.    But others will prefer something different.   I don't think you need to consider getting a rosewood to replace mahogany to get what you're looking for.   


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carruth
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« Reply #2 on: June 12, 2016, 08:36:17 PM »

Larrivee guitars love K&K pickups and preamps.
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« Reply #3 on: June 13, 2016, 05:34:01 AM »

I have K&Ks in my L-07 and L-40 12-string and use the Para DI if I'm playing through a standard guitar amp.  Often,  I find I can just plug directly into most "acoustic" amps with well-thought-out eq sections, and most mixers without the preamp, but it's always there if I need it.  The para DI is very versatile.

For years, all I used was a Seymour Duncan "acoustic tube" that snaps into the sound hole, with no preamp.  The output cable/jack clips to the bottom strap button, but the cable is fully visible.  If that's what you mean by "invasive" then that would likely be an issue for you.  I find it the least invasive of all as it just snaps in or out and no mods to the strap button are required.  And it's easily transferable from guitar to guitar.  Very feedback resistant, volume control, and good fidelity. You also have some control over the frequency response by raising or lowering the pickup in relation to the strings at either end.

http://www.seymourduncan.com/acoustic/acoustic-tube  (Check out the video)

I bought my first one in 1985 and used it for many gigs.  I bought a second one a couple of years ago since I was afraid they might be discontinued at some point.  It sounds real good in my OM-03 by the way.
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guitarman001
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« Reply #4 on: June 22, 2016, 09:00:40 PM »

Thanks for the welcome and for the info!

I've decided I'm against sound hole pickups... they're just too "electric" sounding and an eyesore sitting across the hole. No offence - the M1 and M8 are great pickups but I would like it to be "transparent."


The K&K seems the least invasive method, apart from the fact that you literally have to superglue it to the body (I know you can just use sticky tape but you lose output that way). Also, some people say it isn't the most natural sound and can feed back easily... but I think you can say that about most pickups. It's also not most expensive option which is good because I wont be gigging the acoustic THAT much.... so no point spending too much. Plus, no batteries to worry about.
I've heard the K&K works best with the K&K pre-amp...?

The only alternative is the Anthem or K&K's similar system, where you have the internal mic and bridge transducer for the lower frequencies... and you can blend them as you want. I actually tried this and it sounded great.
I haven't tried the K&K though did try a Baggs equivalent and didn't think it sounded "as good" - also I must say the best I heard was the ES2 (?) electronics in a Taylor 814...

FYI when I tried these... I also tried acoustic worth 4-5x the cost of my Larrivee... and none of them played or sounded as good, acoustically.

Problem with the Anthem is... it's expensive. I would like to have the best sound possible and I think this is one of the best, but surely it's more feedback prone than the K&K since it uses a mic... though all the high-end Lowdens tend to use the Anthem system.

Fishman Aura pre-amp has also been recommended to me. And I keep reading that Red Eye pre-amps are seriously good (though expensive).

Too many options!
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guitarman001
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« Reply #5 on: June 22, 2016, 09:02:26 PM »

FYI I tried the Baggs i-beam and didn't like it.
The element was better but still not amazing.
Anthem sounded the best, from the Baggs bunch..
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guitarman001
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« Reply #6 on: June 22, 2016, 09:34:44 PM »

Although not featuring the Anthem, this is a good demo of the Fishman vs K&K vs Lyric:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=smWDdTCKDGg&index=2&list=RDD5AoId-9fW0
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eded
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« Reply #7 on: June 22, 2016, 09:35:19 PM »



K&K Pure Mini I keep reading is fantastic, a bit bassy but you can dial that out with your DI box.

In either case I'm going to have to widen the end-hole and fit a strap button into the neck heel.

Suggestions welcome!

My guitar:


2 comments...

With a decent preamp or DI, you should be able to easily get a great sound out of a K&K.  Ultrasound PAMM, Red Eye, K&K Pure Preamp (or the XLR version) are 3 that I have seen used to good effect.  I don't play with a loud combo so I have never needed one, but friends have had great luck with the sound hole plug thingies...  

And, there is a better than average chance you won't have to enlarge the endpin hole.  Most Larrivees built in the past 5-7 years have a hole the size of an endpin jack.  You just unscrew the existing pin, knock out the T-nut, and install the jack.  The neck heel pin is an easy install, or you can stick with a traditional string around the headstock.

Ed
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guitarman001
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« Reply #8 on: June 22, 2016, 09:56:16 PM »

Which pre-amp did you like the most?

For under £100 K&K is bang for the buck.
I'm a sucker for wanting the "best" though and if the Anthem is THAT good, I'd be tempted.
But the K&K is so non-invasive.

I found this... the K&K in an OM-02 (just like my guitar):
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qyhuiXl1IFM
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guitarman001
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« Reply #9 on: June 23, 2016, 12:35:14 PM »

Does the end pin on an OM-02 have to be enlarged to fir the K&K Pure Mini jack?
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eded
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« Reply #10 on: June 23, 2016, 04:11:52 PM »

Does the end pin on an OM-02 have to be enlarged to fir the K&K Pure Mini jack?

If it looks like this, no.

Oops, I forgot.  http://www.larrivee.com/shop/end-pin-chrome

And, I use a K&K Pure Preamp.  Going straight into my Ultrasound AG50 (or AG30), I usually don't use it.

Ed
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Zohn
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« Reply #11 on: June 23, 2016, 05:14:47 PM »

K&K Pure mini + Red Eye - no question!


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guitarman001
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« Reply #12 on: June 23, 2016, 05:55:22 PM »

I've heard Red Eye are great but I've seen DI boxes by Orchid Electronics which cost just £25...!

OK thanks - I'll check the end pin to see if it looks like that.

I also contacted Larrivee... they say it should be no problem (no need to widen the hole). Also, they recommended I check out the Baggs iMix-noCut. I'm pretty sure I'm going with the K&K but will check that out.
Now... do I fit the K&K myself........
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« Reply #13 on: June 24, 2016, 04:04:50 AM »

The iMix no-cut is what I have in my LSV-11.  It is a combo ibeam and element, and it still blows me away in clarity, warmth, and presence.  I've had no feedback issues at all, and I stand in front of the bass amp and almost directly over my own floor wedge monitor at church.  And when I plug in and face my monitor, it sounds as true to acoustic sound as I've ever heard from a pickup.
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guitarman001
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« Reply #14 on: June 25, 2016, 07:54:45 PM »

Damn, sounds good!!

However! I've decided to go with the lower-cost and less-invasive K&K Pure Mini, and a micro DI from Orchid Electronics. All-in, approx £100 which is great given the amount of times I'll play unplugged! Hopefully can just do EQ / FX on the PA.
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guitarman001
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« Reply #15 on: July 04, 2016, 07:13:55 AM »

So I fitted the K&K myself... took SOME time and I'd get smebody else to do it in future, however... it sounds fantastic. Just like the guitar but louder. Very happy with the result!
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« Reply #16 on: July 04, 2016, 08:50:38 PM »

So I fitted the K&K myself... took SOME time and I'd get smebody else to do it in future, however... it sounds fantastic. Just like the guitar but louder. Very happy with the result!

That's what we like to hear.  The first install can be a bit nerve wracking, but they get easier.

 

Ed
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L07 Shooting Star
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« Reply #17 on: July 07, 2016, 07:43:21 AM »

Good on you.  You certainly did your research, took your time, and saved a few bucks (er pounds) by doing your own install.  I think you made the best choice given your criteria. 
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guitarman001
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« Reply #18 on: July 07, 2016, 09:52:05 PM »

Thanks, all!

I was tempted to get a more expensive Baggs system but yes, given my criteria, this is the perfect solution.
I can use a tuner in-line with my Orchid DI (£25!!) as a mute, and the PA to control EQ. Whole solution cost £115 - and sounds fantastic!
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guitarman001
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« Reply #19 on: July 11, 2016, 08:25:36 PM »

Sort of OT but I was also thinking about taking this to a tech so it's action is a little lower - a bit more like an old Martin I had.
Probably involved saving some off the nut/saddle.

Has anybody had this done?
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