#1
Hi there. I'm one of those guitarists who knows next to nothing about the electronics side of guitars.

I'm intending to have an acoustic pickup installed on my Art & Lutherie Ami (parlour guitar). Whilst I usually use a Seymour Duncan soundhole pickup on my acoustics, which has an "ok" sound, it's too big to fit into the soundhole of this smaller bodied guitar.

The guitar will be used to gig in a variety of locations, ranging from outdoor cafes to indoor halls and crappy pubs. It will be used in solo circumstances, and also in full band situations (bass, drums, electric guitars etc).

I'm looking for an acoustic pickup that would give the best possible sound quality in all of these circumstances. I'm talking about nice tone when alone, but not prone to feedback because I'm standing near the monitors.

Budget is negotiable - I'm willing to pay a good price for a good result. Any help or thoughts you may have would be great.
And no, Guitar Hero will not help. Even on expert. Really.
Soundcloud
#3
get a piezoelectric one, they produce a more natural sound than magnetic pickups (as it's the soundwave that they detect rather than the change in magnetic field). I've got a guitar tech TD2 transducer found , gives a great sound quality on my classical. The pickups are self-adhesive, so you can if you want just stick them to the body (best position for that is directly below the bridge), which is what I did, though the cable with the jack socket attached is then just dangling from the pickups (mine is gaffa taped to the bottom of my guitar), and it looks unprofessional, or you can remove the bridge, install the pickups beneath the bridge and drill a hole in the body for the jack, which looks more professional, though I don't know how it would affect sound quality (presumably either no difference or it would be improved, assming the holes are drilled properly and to the correct size, so I'd recommend hiring a professional to install it that way).
Quote by CV334

Sir, the contents of my mouth just blew all over my keyboard, desk, and part of my monitor. For the record, it was slightly chewed Keebler cookies and coffee slurry.

The average pitmonkey's response to my jokes.
#4
Quote by Crofty89
get a piezoelectric one, they produce a more natural sound than magnetic pickups

That's hugely debatable. I think they take every bit of life out of the sound. They also don't detect the sound waves, unless you're referring to a microphone piezo. Under-saddle and soundboard pick-ups sense the actual up-and-down of the guitar surface as it vibrates.
#5
agreed! piezo picks up vibration only.

Quote by GC Shred Off
That's hugely debatable. I think they take every bit of life out of the sound. They also don't detect the sound waves, unless you're referring to a microphone piezo. Under-saddle and soundboard pick-ups sense the actual up-and-down of the guitar surface as it vibrates.
#6
I've had the Martin Gold Plus pickup installed in two guitars that I've owned over the years. Personally, I think that its one of the better pickups on the market at the moment. It's good for someone like me, who doesn't really care much for the preamp systems you find on most every acoustic electric. I just prefer to use the EQ from the PA system I'm working with that night.

LR Baggs released a new pickup called the Anthem, fairly recently, which I've heard good things about. I haven't gotten to hear one outside of their website, but an old friend of mine swears its the best one he's ever used. It combines a piezo pickup, as well as a condenser mic that is stuck to the underside of the bridge. It, like the Martin Gold, is fairly expensive though.
"Here I sit, beneath a lonely line."

~iband48's signature
#7
The Fishman is well thought of, and fairly easy to install.

Regarding iband48's post above; it used to be about 20 years ago that a combination of a piezo and a condenser mic was considered "The hot setup" and was being used by lots of professional musicians.
Unfortunately, you pretty much had to do it yourself, or go somewhere where a techie could make you one.
Interesting to see that they're commercially available now.
#8
I love the Fishman Matrix Infinity. I have it installed in my Main guitar and my backup guitar. I believe it's around $140 USD. Great pickup.
#9
Thanks for the help and suggestions guys.

Edit: Does anyone have any experience/thoughts on the Fishman Rare Earth Blend pickup?
And no, Guitar Hero will not help. Even on expert. Really.
Soundcloud
#10
My guitar is rigged with a Fishman piezo&microphone pickup, and a Fishman Rare Earth magnetic pickup. I plug one into the other and can blend between the two, and personally, I prefer the Rare Earth sound for live.