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Best acoustic guitar pickups 2018 – [Buyer’s Guide]

Last Updated November 1, 2018
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Norman RyanLooking for ways to bring your acoustic guitar pickups to the next level? Then you’ve come to the right place. I’m Norman Ryan. One of the most important sections in the article – the comparison charts for best acoustic guitar pickups in 2018!

I’ll brush up on how to choose the best acoustic guitar pickups and examine things like materials, quality, and weight. We take a close look at some of the best acoustic guitar pickups to help you get ripped.

Best acoustic guitar pickups of 2018

You must have heard that the best acoustic guitar pickups should allow you to save money, right? Sure, but that’s not the only reason you should consider getting one. There are dozens of choices for an acoustic guitar pickups these days. These are composed of modern styling with modern technology to match it. Here are some good examples. Now, let’s get to the gist of the matter: which are the best acoustic guitar pickups for the money? I have a variety of material used in the construction of acoustic guitar pickups including metal, plastic, and glass.

Test Results and Ratings

Rank №1 №2 №3
Product
Total 4.8 4.5 4.3
Ease of use
5 points
5 points
4 points
Size
5 points
4 points
4 points
Performance
4 points
5 points
5 points
Value
5 points
4 points
4 points
Awards 1
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№1 – KLOS Black Carbon Fiber Travel Acoustic Guitar Package

 
KLOS Black Carbon Fiber Travel Acoustic Guitar Package

Pros
The only hybrid carbon fiber and wooden acoustic travel guitar ever built, this guitar features a high quality mahogany and blackwood neck, a carbon fiber foam core sandwich soundboard, a carbon fiber body, blackwood bridge, D’Addario .11 gauge steel strings and ABS nut, saddle, and bridge pins
Cons
We’ve been using it for 4 months and didn’t notice any flaws.
 
Total:
4.8

Why did this acoustic guitar pickups win the first place?

I also liked the delivery service that was fast and quick to react. It was delivered on the third day. The product is very strong. Its material is stable and doesn’t crack. I am very happy with the purchase. It is definitely worth its money. The product is top-notch! I really enjoy the design. It is compact, comfortable and reliable. And it looks amazing!

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Ease of use
5

5star

Size
5

5star

Performance
4

4star

Value
5

5star

 

 

№2 – TraderPlus 12 Hole Acoustic Guitar Soundhole Pickup Sound Hole Magnetic Preamp with Tone and Volume Control

 
TraderPlus 12 Hole Acoustic Guitar Soundhole Pickup Sound Hole Magnetic Preamp with Tone and Volume Control

Pros
✔Pickup Size: 8.6 x 1.1 x 0.4″ ; Cable Length: 10′.
✔Compact and stylish design with black metal material.
✔Felt backed clip protects the guitar from any scratch or damage.
Cons
Long-day-shipping.
Inner parts not as hardwearing as other models.
 
Total:
4.5

Why did this acoustic guitar pickups come in second place?

Seems that the material is good. It has a very beautiful color but I don’t really like the texture. I recommend you to consider buying this model, it definitely worth its money. This is a pretty decent product that perfectly fitted the interior of our office. I really liked it. It is amazing in every aspect. It did even exceed my expectations for a bit, considering the affordable price.

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Ease of use
5

5star

Size
4

4star

Performance
5

5star

Value
4

4star

 

 

№3 – Luvay Guitar Pickup Acoustic Electric Transducer for Acoustic Guitar

 
Luvay Guitar Pickup Acoustic Electric Transducer for Acoustic Guitar

Pros
Turn your acoustic guitar into an acoustic-electric without expensive modifications
Easy to install: can be clip-on to guitar sound hole and connect the audio input with a standard 1/4″ connector
It will turn your acoustic music more powerful and electric
Cons
Not for inexperienced users.
Small size.
 
Total:
4.3

Why did this acoustic guitar pickups take third place?

I liked the design. We’ve been using it for 2 months and it still looks like brand new. I hope that the good reputation of the manufacturer will guarantee a long-term work. This price is appropriate since the product is very well built. It doesn’t squeaks nor bents. Looks great in my apartment.

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Ease of use
4

4star

Size
4

4star

Performance
5

5star

Value
4

4star

 

 

acoustic guitar pickups Buyer’s Guide

If you keep the before points in mind, you can easily go out to the market and buy acoustic guitar pickups, right? No!

Terminology

Like any other type of technology, acoustic guitar pickups have a lot of terminology associated with them. The terms below are all commonly used to describe acoustic guitar pickups, and it’s important that you have a decent understanding of what they mean before making a purchase. Also, though this article may be aimed at guitar players, a lot of the terminology is going to carry over to any other acoustic instrument.

Piezo: While the mechanics at work behind piezo pickups are a bit complicated, involving special crystals that create an electric signal when put under pressure, the results are pretty simple. Piezo pickups are all around workable pickups, and considering that they’re relatively cheap to produce it’s no surprise that they’re the industry standard.

Contact/Transducer Pickup: Contact, or as they’re sometimes called transducer pickups, function by transferring the vibrations created by the top of your guitar into an electric current in a similar way to piezo pickup systems. Contact pickups are generally the easiest pickups to install, and relatively inexpensive.

Magnetic/Soundhole Pickup: Available in both active and passive variants (see definition below), magnetic, or soundhole, pickups function in exactly the same way as the pickups in an electric guitar. The wire wrapped around the magnet in the pickup allows the vibrations of your guitar strings to be transferred into an electric signal. Some of these pickups are designed to output a more realistic acoustic sound, while some cheaper models sound a bit cheesy.

Internal Microphone: While not technically a pickup, using an internal microphone system is a pretty common method of amplifying an acoustic guitar.

Multi-Source: A multi-source system is exactly what it sounds like, a combination of either two different pickup systems or a pickup system and an internal microphone.

Passive: When a pickup is described as being passive, it means that it simply passes the signal from your guitar to your preferred method of amplification with little to no alteration aside from the sound profile of the pickup itself. Think of this type of pickup as being similar to a standard microphone.

Active: Active pickups on the other hand operate a bit differently. Rather than just passing the signal along, active pickups generally give you more options to tweak your tone or adjust your volume. These pickups also add some gain to the signal, making them louder than their passive counterparts.

Recommendations

Seeing as how there are so many brands and types of acoustic guitar pickups available, we figured it would be helpful to give you a few examples of great pickups as a place to start. Every pickup below has its perks, and with the information above you should be able to find an item below that will work for you.

LR Baggs M80 Magnetic Soundhole Pickup

A different kind of magnetic soundhole pickup, the LR Baggs uses proprietary technology in order to capture the entire frequency range of your guitar. The unique free floating humbucker inside of the M80 acts as a 3D body sensor, faithfully recreating the tone of your guitar. The M80 also boasts the option to switch between active or passive modes, as well as an onboard battery check, volume control, and adjustable pole pieces to capture the perfect balance between each string.

Undersaddle Pickups

Perhaps the most common type of acoustic pickup is the undersaddle pickup, which consists of a small strip of six piezoelectric crystals that sit underneath the bridge and pick up the individual strings from underneath the bridge. These piezo pickups are very inexpensive and reliable and require minimal modification to the guitar itself. Piezo pickups are passive in design and, as a result, give very low output. They usually require a matching preamp to be installed in the guitar (which can mean routing out of the side of the guitar) or mounting the preamp and required battery inside the body of the guitar.

Magnetic Pickups

Magnetic pickups use the same electromagnetic technology to capture the strings of the guitar as electric guitar pickups and as a result, the sound produced is very similar to those on an electric guitar. These pickups usually mount directly above the strings in the soundhole of the guitar, and do not require any holes to be drilled into the guitar to install. Another benefit of magnetic pickups is that they are not permanently installed in the guitar and can be easily changed out or removed at any time without causing irreparable damage.

Microphones and Blended Systems

Blended pickup systems combine one or more of these pickup types with a condenser microphone built into the pickup system. These systems are designed to add some of the natural resonance of the guitar back into the signal with the microphone and blend it with the pickup source to create a full range system.

Watch Now ››

A “best of both worlds” approach. Combines the best qualities of each pickup type with a microphone to capture a full, natural sound.

Expensive, requires special cables and/or modification to your guitar by adding a second output jack.

Mahogany

When used as a top, mahogany has a relatively low response rate (compared to other top woods), considerable density, and a low overtone content. Mahogany-topped guitars have a strong “punchy” tone that is well suited to country blues playing. When considered for back and sides, mahogany has relatively high velocity of sound, which contributes much overtone coloration.

Electronics

Many acoustic guitars come with pickups/preamplifiers built in for playing in larger spaces where your acoustic sound needs to fill the room. Some guitars have preamps mounted in a hole cut in the side, while others are mounted inside the soundhole. There are systems that combine preamps, microphone, piezo pickups, EQ, and tuners into one easy controller, usually on the side of the guitar.

Tonewood

Intonation determines whether or not the notes play in tune as you move up the neck. If the distance between the frets (usually above the 12th fret) is off, the guitar will be incapable of playing in tune.

Tuning Machines

It ain’t cheap, but the M80 offers a unique take on the soundhole pickup, thanks to a free-floating humbucking coil, which functions as a ‘3D body sensor’. This picks up the soundboard’s resonance, resulting in a more faithful reproduction of your natural acoustic tone.

K&K Pure Mini

As used by percussive acoustic whiz Andy McKee, the K&K Pure Mini is a bridge-plate transducer design.

Fitting it to your guitar requires a dab of superglue here and there, but the resultant tone is a warm, rich and faithful reproduction of your acoustic’s unplugged sound, with one of the loudest passive pickup outputs on the market.

The secondhand acoustic guitar market is often a place where bargains are to be found – and it’s probably never been more buoyant. We provide some thoughts on buying a used instrument.

We’ve all heard stories about guitarists who have found six string gold in the pawn shops of yesteryear. Pre-war Martins for peanuts, Gibson and Fender electrics that turned out to be holy grail 1950s models – you know the sort of thing. Sadly, that kind of story is becoming less and less common as dealers just about everywhere have wised up, mainly, I suspect thanks to the internet and the easy immediacy of information available at the click of a mouse. But there are still some very good deals to be had on the used market today and so if you’re after an instrument that is both pre-owned and pre-loved, here’s a few things to look out for when inspecting any prospective new purchase.

A funny thing happened…

As anyone who has ventured into a guitar forum will tell you, there’s an awful lot of talk going on about different makes and manufacturers of acoustics 2hours a day, seven days a week. Some of it is extremely useful, some of it exquisitely nerdy, and some sadly misinformed. If you can sieve out the useful stuff, then it’s worth a little forum exploration in your quest to find out more about a potential purchase. Good information speaks for itself – users of the same make or model you’re interested in might have some useful stories to tell which reinforce your ideas about its value. Nerdiness can come in handy, too: insider info like which factory the guitar was built in, changes in ownership of the company concerned, good patches, bad patches in terms of build quality – all these can help bolster an opinion.

Neck and neck

While we’re talking about the neck and fretboard areas, check out the general condition of the fretboard. Any splits or hollows? These aren’t so easy to fix and they will affect the overall playability of the instrument. More importantly, is the neck straight? Check the action, too – is it unreasonably high or suspiciously low? If you know how to sight a neck – that is, the art of looking along the fretboard from the nut end to check for straightness – then do so. Many imperfections can be sorted out quite simply via the truss rod, but if you suspect anything seriously out of whack or are unsure, then it’s probably best to walk away.

Don’t fret!

One of the more obvious signs of wear and tear on any guitar is on its frets. It’s easy to see, too, but the signs of even moderately heavy usage in this region shouldn’t create too much cause for concern. If it’s a prestige make then the thought of an eventual refret shouldn’t put you off. Even though the idea of ripping all the frets out and replacing them sounds like a major operation, in the hands of an expert – and let’s face it you wouldn’t trust anyone else – the results are generally invisible. All you need to do at the time of purchase is to consider how much life you think the frets have in them and balance the cost of a refret somewhere down the line against what you’re being asked to pay.

One other check to carry out is to make sure there are no frets that have lifted or come loose. Both conditions should reveal themselves by carefully playing every note along every string. Loose frets make an unpleasant and very audible noise and a fret that has lifted with show up in either buzz in the surrounding areas or by a note missing altogether.

Tuner day

The mechanical nature of a string tuner is basically very simple – a capstan, a cog and some kind of threaded screw is practically all that’s involved at a very basic level. So there’s not an awful lot that can go wrong in this particular area. I’ve known tuners that look rusty, bent or slightly askew work perfectly and was once reassured by a guitar maker of high repute that the failure rate of a tuning machine is very low indeed. Furthermore, in the instance where you might want to change them in favour of some shiny new ones then replacements are readily available via mail order and it’s a very easy refit or upgrade to make.

Open back tuners can be subject to rust – I’ve seen plenty, but generally they still function – and sealed units are more difficult to diagnose by sight.

However, if the guitar you’re looking at is an older model and you are conscious of keeping its vintage vibe intact, then some exploratory twists and turns might be in order. Defects to look out for are a great deal of slack – that is there is movement in the tuner when you twist it that doesn’t seem to have any affect at all – or uneven, lumpy turning. Neither is fatal, and in the case of a vintage instrument it’s sometimes best to leave well alone, but it can make the job of tuning a little harder than it should be.

Saddle up!

String saddles can wear, too, although I’ve found that they’re quite hardy and don’t generally cause too much cause for concern. If everything looks fine down at this end of the string length and there are no Grand Canyon-type grooves visible in the saddle then all should be well.

Electrics

If the guitar has a pickup fitted, asking to hear it plugged in is not at all unreasonable. Modern electronics onboard guitars are generally quite reliable and it should be an easy job to determine whether the pickup is working correctly or not. The only problem I’ve experienced personally in the past was that the under saddle pickup in one of my guitars developed a hum, which was tracked down to a minor preamp problem and easily sorted.

Yamaha SLG130NW

Yamaha is the Silent Guitar manufacturer to beat, thanks to their impressive price to quality ratio. And big name artists like Brian May, Mike Stern and Lee Ritenour seem to agree. The SLG130NW is the top-of-the-line model designed to give you the true feel and vibe of nylon stringed classical guitars in Silent Guitar format. The neck construction follows the conventional classical method and employs an ebony fingerboard. So you won’t miss your tonewoods too much, even the smoothly curved body frame is made of rosewood and maple.

SoloEttte SongBird Jazz

The SoloEtte line of silent guitars was designed by a luthier that wanted a guitar which will not require much maintenance or repairs. To achieve this, he eliminated the use of thin woods, which minimizes cracking or warping due to extreme travel conditions. Although his goal was different, the resulting instrument ended up being a sturdy and reliable line of silent guitars.

Koopal EG100

The Koopal EG100 is an affordable steel string silent guitar that is designed for practicing comfort. It is lightweight and disassembles easily for quick practice sessions wherever and whenever the inspiration strikes. Just take off the detachable frames and put everything inside its compact bag. No one would suspect you were carrying a guitar.

Sojing 020A-U

Good quality affordable instruments are starting to invade the silent guitar market, case in point is the Sojing 020A-U, a welcome new addition to this list. This cheap silent guitar surprisingly comes with a full-sized body, allowing for classical guitar like playability. The nut width is 1/16″, scale length is 23/4″ and it is 39″ long.

What Shape and Size

Dreadnought guitars have been a staple style of acoustic guitar all through the 20th and 21st centuries with Martin first developing their dreadnought guitar in 1916.

They are the most versatile guitars, having been played by artists of every genre from folk to metal, they have great balance between volume and ease of play.

Now if you hear about a jumbo guitar you might think of a big loud acoustic full of bass and character.

And you would be completely right!

Jumbo guitars are perfect for rhythm guitar complimenting lead players and other instruments. The loud volume produced by having a bigger body provides you with fantastic sounding rhythm guitar, perfect for folk players or those wanting to take it solo and play and sing their song.

Parlor guitars are on the opposite end, with their smaller bodies they produce great midrange tones but have less volume than the jumbos.

Very comfortable guitars to hold, the parlor guitars are often the preference of blues and folk players because of their lower price tag.

What Tone the Guitar Has

Now the tone of any guitar, acoustic or not, is affected by many things. The bodywood arguably has the biggest affect on tone but the strings can also carry a lot of weight. So if you think your tone is too bright you can change the strings to something warmer.

Instead of talking about the individual wood each guitar is made of I decided I would highlight an overview of the tone to make things more accessible.

Classic body style acoustic guitars offer a generally balanced tone and a medium amount of sound projection. This type of guitar is a safe go-to for a variety of styles, and for this reason it is used both by players who favor intricate fingerpicking as well as those who tend to play with broader strumming techniques.

Intonation

Intonation is the system by which an acoustic guitar’s notes play in tune as the player moves up the fretboard of the neck. Without proper intonation, a guitar won’t stay in tune and is useless for both live performance and recording.

Tonewoods

Beyond changing the appearance that an acoustic guitar may have, the type of wood that is used to make the instrument can also alter the way that the guitar sounds. When the sound of the guitar vibrates from the strings and reflects off of the wood, the type of wood that is part of this process can have an effect on the end product.

Cedar tends to produce a brighter and more trebly tone. Because of its quick response, many players who favor fingerstyle picking prefer to play cedar tonewood instruments.

Spruce is generally regarded as the standard for acoustic guitar tops. It provides excellent resonance and is responsive to a high velocity of sound.

Nylon Strings

Classical acoustic guitars utilize nylon strings, which are better suited for the classical and flamenco style that these instruments are most commonly used for.

It’s important to not interchangeably swap guitar strings with instruments that they are not designed for. For instance, putting steel strings on a classical guitar that is designed for nylon strings can do serous damage to the body, as the neck of classical guitars are unable to handle the tension brought about by using the steel strings.

Neal Says

The Ibanez AEG18LII is one of the more visually exciting guitars in this list with its eye-catching Violin Sunburst finish. Important features are a cutaway for excellent upper fret access, and quality Fishman electronics. It features a slender body, making it great for smaller players.

Dreadnought Guitars

The most popular acoustic guitar body shape.  Dreadnought guitars have large body shapes which will equate to a louder sound being produced. Due to the deeper soundbox the Dreadnought style will produce a very bassy, boomy sound. For the average player, this is the right style of guitar to go for.  This is however a fairly large guitar and may be a handful for a smaller framed individual.

Grand Concert Guitars

Once you understand the basics about how an acoustic guitar is designed and built, you will be able to see and hear subtle differences that will help you pick the best guitar for your needs.

Most acoustic guitars use a set neck, which means the neck is glued onto the body of the guitar. The alternative is a bolt-on neck, which is more commonly used with electric guitars. A heel provides additional support at the back of the neck, where it meets the body of the guitar.

The fretboard, or fingerboard, on the top side of the neck, and is usually a separate piece of wood that is glued to the neck. Fretboards are usually constructed out of rosewood or ebony.

Thin strips of metal, called frets, are embedded in the wood at half-step increments along the 12-tone scale, to indicate where different notes are played. Most guitar fretboards have inlaid dots or symbols on the odd-numbered frets, starting with the third – excluding the 11th and 13th in favor of the 12th, or the octave.

The body of an acoustic guitar is composed of the top, also called the soundboard, that is supported by internal bracing; the sides, and the back that together form a hollow chamber. The upper body curves are referred to as the upper bout, while the usually larger lower body curves are called the lower bout. The area between them is referred to as the waist.

The size and shape of the body influences both the sound and playability of the instrument. Finding a body shape that matches your physical and musical needs will help ensure you choose the right acoustic guitar. See Body Styles – Comfort and Resonance below for more.

The sound hole, through which sound projects, is aligned with the waist, at the base of the fretboard and is often fitted with a protective pickguard made of plastic or other materials.

The guitar’s strings are mounted to the body of the guitar at the bridge. Bridge pins anchor each string. The thin strip of either bone or plastic that spaces out the strings on the bridge, is called a saddle. The bridge transmits string vibrations to the guitar’s top resulting in the instrument’s sound output, also referred to as projection.

Acoustic-Electric Guitar Systems

Many musicians find it helpful to be able to plug in their acoustic guitar, but how does an acoustic-electric guitar work? These guitars boast the addition of a pickup system inside the body that turns the vibrations of the soundboard into electronic signals. These signals can be weak, so most acoustic-electric guitars use a preamp to make them stronger.

The preamp is typically located on the side of the guitar that faces up while playing. It includes volume and tone controls, and sometimes a built-in tuner.

Guild M-20 Concert Acoustic Guitar Natural

Concert acoustic guitars date to 185Their smaller size, generally about 13-1/2″ at the lower bout, give them a bright sound with a punchy mid-range. The smaller size is comfortable, and makes these guitars very playable for smaller musicians.

Unplugged album

The grand auditorium’s lower bout is sometimes wider than the classic dreadnought’s – generally 16″ – but the waist is narrower, creating a dramatic hourglass shape. These guitars have a greater range for volume and more balanced tone than smaller body styles.

Travel and Mini-Acoustics

Smaller players, musicians who travel frequently, and parents shopping for children, may also want to consider travel and mini-acoustic guitars. These guitars were designed for the comfort of smaller players, and for convenience when traveling, but many guitar manufacturers have invested significant time and resources into creating smaller-scale acoustic guitars that don’t compromise quality or sound.

Most mini-acoustics utilize the same familiar shape of a standard acoustic guitar, at about 3/4-scale, with 1to 20 frets. Others, often referred to as “backpackers,” have a narrow body that only fans out slightly from the width of the neck. Backpackers are designed to be durable, lightweight, and easy to pack.

Neck Width and Length

The thickness and width of guitar necks vary, depending on the size of the guitar body. It will not affect the sound of the guitar, but it will affect your comfort with the instrument.

Acoustic necks are usually listed as 12- or 14-fret necks. This number refers to the number of frets above the guitar body, not the total number of frets. On a 12-fret neck, the 13th and 14th frets will be on the body, and, thus, harder to reach than on a 14-fret neck, where they are extended beyond the guitar body. If you have small hands, look for an acoustic guitar with a smaller diameter neck.

Nylon vs. Steel Strings

It is a common misconception that a new guitar player should start with nylon strings, because they are easier on fingers or easier to play. But nylon strings and steel strings are not interchangeable on the same guitar, so it’s not a matter of progressing from one kind of string to another with experience. What should really drive your decision is what kind of music you want to play.

Nylon strings produce a softer, mellow tone. They are often used in classical and flamenco-style guitar playing, as well as some folk music. Classical guitars have a wider neck to provide more space between the strings, and shorter fretboard, than acoustic guitars that use steel strings.

Steel strings are more common, and are usually used by rock, country and pop musicians. Steel string acoustic guitars create a louder, brighter tone that is commonly associated with that classic acoustic guitar sound.

The 12-String Acoustic Guitar

Twelve-string guitars are a standard variation made by several different guitar manufacturers. They are commonly used by players who specialize in folk and blues music. Arlo Guthrie and John Denver are just two of many famous American folk artists who commonly used 12-string acoustic guitars.

12-string acoustic guitars have six string courses, each with two strings that are tuned to produce a chiming, chorus effect. Usually, the string pairs in the bass courses are tuned an octave apart while all treble strings are tuned in unison. Some guitarists prefer tuning the the second string in the third course (G) in unison while others opt to tune it an octave higher for bell-like ringing tones.

How An Electric Guitar Works

While styles and models may vary, electric guitars operate on the same general principles. The pickup mounted on the electric guitar’s body functions as a magnetic field. When a metal string is plucked and vibrates, it generates a current. That current is transmitted by the pickup through a preamp circuit with tone controls to the guitar cable, and in turn to the amplifier. The amplifier boosts the signal and modifies it with various tone controls and effects, depending on the amplifier’s design and capabilities. The signal is then output to a speaker, which converts it to sound waves. The type of pickup(s), tone controls, strings, playing techniques, and other factors built into the guitar’s design all influence the signal that is sent to the amplifier. In short, each component of the guitar affects how the guitar sounds.

Pickups and Electronics

Aside from the body style, the pickups and electronics have the greatest effect on the way a guitar sounds.

The most basic, original pickup design is a single-coil pickup. It’s composed of a single magnet with fine wire wrapped around it, creating a magnetic field that captures the strings’ vibrations converting them into an electronic signal. Single-coil pickups tend to be bright and crisp sounding. The tone they produce cuts through dense band sounds well, but they are also prone to generating hum and are subject to magnetic interference. Many great artists play guitars equipped with single-coil pickups. Eric Clapton, Stevie Ray Vaughan, John Mayer, Merle Travis and many others are famous for their use of single-coil tone.

Active Pickups and Electronics

Some guitars are equipped with active pickups that require batteries as an energy source and incorporate a preamp for sound-shaping. Active electronics may also include filters and equalization circuits for added sound control. Guitars with active electronics generally have a higher output than magnetic pickups and produce cleaner, clearer sound. Most guitar pickups are passive.

Pickup Switching and Other Controls

Most electric guitars feature multiple pickups. Some will have two or three single-coils. Some will have two or three humbuckers. Many offer a combination of single-coil and humbucker pickups. This combination offers the player a wide range of tonal options. Pickup configurations are often abbreviated by referring to single-coils with an “S” and humbuckers with an “H.” The placement of each pickup is indicated from the neck down towards the bridge. Thus an SSH configuration has single-coils at the neck and middle positions and a humbucker at the bridge.

The placement of pickups on the guitar’s body has a significant influence on the tone they generate. Pickups located near the bridge sample the strings where they have the least overall motion. The result is accentuated treble sounds or “bite.” Pickups located nearer the center of the strings—closer to the neck of the guitar—produce a tone characterized by more midrange and bass sounds.

Guitars with multiple pickups have controls allowing the player to access each pickup individually as well as combinations of two or more pickups simultaneously. These controls may be rotary knobs, blade selectors, or toggle switches that allow the guitarist to quickly access various pickup combinations during performance.

In addition to pickup selection, most guitars will have controls for volume and tone. Volume controls simply regulate the strength of the output signal. Depending on the amplifier, this can control the tone as well as the volume. Most tone knobs control high frequencies and many guitars have separate tone controls for each pickup. This can vary a guitar’s sound between soft, warm, and mellow to a very bright, raw, distorted sound.

Other switching options found on select guitars can control phasing between pickups for unique effects, eliminate one coil of a humbucker, or toggle the output on and off.

Some newer guitars have digital technology built in to allow a user to access a variety of sounds, including acoustic, 12-string, and resonator guitar tones; violins, piano, and many other sounds traditional electric guitars can’t produce. Other options include emulating alternate tunings without actually adjusting the tension on the strings.

Scale Length

Scale length refers to the length of the string that vibrates, and is measured from nut to bridge.

A longer scale length usually offers a tighter feel in string tension, with a brighter shimmer and well-defined low end. A shorter scale length offers less tension, which facilitates easier string bending. It also can make it easier to play for smaller hands. A shorter scale offers a generally warmer tone.

Most Fender guitars (and others of similar design) use a 25.inch scale length. Most Gibson guitars (and others of similar design) use 24.7inch scale length.

Additionally, most PRS guitars use a 2inch scale length. This design is intended to capture a blend of the warmer tones and ease of play of a short scale length, as well as the brighter tone and tighter playability of a longer scale length.

Neck Construction

The neck’s profile and width affects the guitar’s playability and the player’s comfort when fretting. While most necks are either “C”- or “U”-shaped, the width and depth of the neck in relation to the player’s hand is an important consideration. Players with smaller hands should seek out narrower, shallower necks while those with larger hands will most likely find beefier neck profiles more comfortable.

Fender Special Edition Deluxe Ash Telecaster

Agathis is similar to alder in appearance and tonal characteristics, though not quite as resonant. It is commonly found on newer, more affordable guitars.

Nato is also known as Eastern mahogany, and offers a warm resonance. Nato is very strong, and is most often used in the necks of less expensive electric guitars due to it’s cost effectiveness.

Electric Guitar Hardware

Guitars feature many different styles of hardware which have different uses. There is usually a direct relationship between a guitar’s cost and the quality of its hardware. Better hardware can make a difference in a guitar’s tuning stability and versatility. As you can imagine, this is an area where many improvements and upgrades can bring a host of benefits to the user. The most significant hardware components are tuning machines, bridges and tailpieces.

Kluson 3-per-Side Tuning Machines

 

 

 

 

How to save up to 86%? Here is little trick.

You must visit the page of sales. Here is the link. If you don’t care about which brand is better, then you can choose the acoustic guitar pickups by the price and buy from the one who will offer the greatest discount.

 

 

Final Word

First of all thanks for reading my article to the end! I hope you find my reviews listed here useful and that it allows you to make a proper comparison of what is best to fit your needs and budget. Don’t be afraid to try more than one product if your first pick doesn’t do the trick.

Most important, have fun and choose your acoustic guitar pickups wisely! Good luck!

So, TOP3 of acoustic guitar pickups

 

 

Questions? Leave a comment below!

Chatting about acoustic guitar pickups is my passion! Leave me a question in the comments, I answer each and every one and would love to get to know you better!



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