Sorry I am a complete newbie when it comes to electronics, I just had a question about how preamps work when adding electronics to an acoustic. My question is does a preamp have to be mounted to the guitar? Does the wiring have to go, pickup, to the preamp, then to the output on the guitar? Or can you have the pickup go to the guitar outlet and then into the preamp, then into the amp? If someone could clarify this for me I would appreciate it.
The acoustic signal MUST be transferred to electronic signal before being sent to the amp but it certainly doesn't have to be mounted to the guitar. A microphone is the simplest form of preamp to use in amplifying an acoustic instrument. A passive magnetic pick-up as used on most electrics is a low impedance device that requires no preamplification. One can certainly be installed on an acoustic although it will be prone to feedback and may not accurately capture the tone of your guitar. A piezo pick-up is a high impedance device that will require a preamp. Although the preamp doesn't have to be mounted on the guitar there will be additional wires if it is not. Power will have to be sent TO the pick-up, as well as the signal out.