Archtop Pickup

Discussion in 'Acoustic Instruments' started by dobro, Aug 25, 2008.

  1. dobro

    dobro Member

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    Howdy...

    I've got an old Gibson L-4 archtop (oval sound hole) that I'm thinking about getting a pickup for. I'd rather not drill holes or use superglue...there is no pickguard on the guitar. I'm looking for as accurate acoustic reproduction as possible, not a magnetic pickup. Music is primarily folk/singer-songwriter stuff....strumming and single-note leads primarily - little finger-picking. Mostly small venues, but with the occasional good-sized outdoor festival a possibility.

    I've had a Schertler Basik recommended, but I am very open to other suggestions.

    I'm primarily a dobro player (go figure!) and I finally saw Jerry Douglas playing through his new Aura system (pickup and pedal) last week, and am convinced it's the best thing out there for the dobro...I see a bunch of other Aura pedals, for dreads, jumbos, OMs, etc., but nothing for archtops. I'm wondering if one of the guitar pedals would work for the L-4 with an appropriate (whatever that is) pickup.

    Barring that, I'd likely go through a Baggs Para-acoustic DI.

    Any suggestions appreciated.

    Lee
     
  2. improviduto

    improviduto Member

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    K&K Sound has a number of options for amplifying acoustic instruments. I have a K&K Sound Pure Archtop installed in my archtop, and I love it. No need for a preamp, either. I run it through a Fender Acoustasonic Jr.
     
  3. dobro

    dobro Member

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    Thanks...I'll look into those.

    Anyone else? FWIW, I'll be running my signal to the house system, not an amp.

    ...or judging by my playing last night, I may drop-kick the guitar into the next county and just stick to the dobro...sheesh!
     
  4. drive-south

    drive-south Member

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    If you are planning to run through a house PA, I would definately get a preamp so you will have some control over your' tone and volume.

    K&Ks can be used without preamps, but most people report much better results when using a preamp. I run mine through a K&K XLR preamp.

    driive-south
     
  5. dobro

    dobro Member

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    Thanks....I've got the Baggs now...but for doubling on dobro and guitar I'd need another. I heard David Lindley last week also, he was running his Weissies through a D-Tar that sounded great...they've got a two-channel pre, so that might be the ticket.
     
  6. esiegel

    esiegel Member

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    Nov 16, 2007
    and if you are planning to drop kick it, give me a call and I'll take it offa your hands. I've been looking for a deal on one of these for a while.

    E
     
  7. bazooka47

    bazooka47 Member

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    Location:
    Charleston, SC
    I would go with the K&K archtop model. I installed one in my '59 Super 400, and it works great. It attaches with super glue and is removable. I went with the 'vintage jack' so I would not have to drill out the tailpiece.

    I also have a '29 L-4 (VERY cool guitar), and I am thinking of putting a K&K in that one as well.

    I also bought the K&K preamp, which works very well.
     
  8. Rob DiStefano

    Rob DiStefano Member

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    Haven't found an *acoustic* archtop transducer that I totally liked, though the K&K twins offer the best tone I've heard so far sans and with a valid preamp.
     
  9. dobro

    dobro Member

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    The K&K gets a lot of votes anyway. Has anyone tried a Schertler? They seem to be the hot ticket for mandolin.
     
  10. urlkonig

    urlkonig Supporting Member

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    Location:
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    I have the Schertler -- and yes, once you find the optimal placement for it, it works very nicely. Very pricey though. I used it on my mandolin for a while, but recently got the Baggs Radius for that.

    I have K&K's in a 12 string that work great; I could never get them to work in my Taylor 6-string -- and have been wary of installing them in my old Epi... might be worth a try though, given the other thumbs-up replies.
     

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