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Thread: Under-Saddle Pup for Martin HD-28VL

  1. #1
    Forum Member ch willie's Avatar
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    Under-Saddle Pup for Martin HD-28VL

    Pardon a Martin question on a Fender board--I can't find a decent Martin forum.

    My Martin has a vintage saddle, and the shop told me in 1998 that they were afraid to try to put in a Martin under-saddle pup.

    So what pickup would you recommend? The Martin has a very balanced tone, the bass very prominent because of the bracing. I need something that will accentuate the highs without rumbling the bass I have a Rare Earth humbucker that is too rumbly and harsh--doesn't do justice to my sweet Martin.
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  2. #2
    Forum Member Don's Avatar
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    Re: Under-Saddle Pup for Martin HD-28VL

    K&K Pure Mini from K&K Sound. It's very natural sounding and priced right.

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    Forum Member Erock_Germany's Avatar
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    Re: Under-Saddle Pup for Martin HD-28VL

    K&K is the only way to go. I have 2 acoustics with the Trinity System that adds a microphone to the under saddle...

    Non evasive. Can not really see the guitar has been electrified.

    Sound is incredible!
    Last edited by Erock_Germany; 02-11-2013 at 02:06 AM.
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  4. #4
    Forum Member ch willie's Avatar
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    Re: Under-Saddle Pup for Martin HD-28VL

    Funny: Amazon offers them for $91 and Musician's Friend doesn't offer them at all.
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  5. #5
    Forum Member Don's Avatar
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    Re: Under-Saddle Pup for Martin HD-28VL

    I bought mine straight from K&K. Mine has a small pre-amp (not the trinity). They used to be less expensive.

  6. #6
    Forum Member ch willie's Avatar
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    Re: Under-Saddle Pup for Martin HD-28VL

    Wouldn't I have the same problem with the K&K that I have with putting in a Martin under the saddle?

    I should have titled the thread, "Can't put an under-saddle pickup in my Martin."

    Is there a decent alternative to the under-saddle pickups?
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  7. #7
    Forum Member Don's Avatar
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    Re: Under-Saddle Pup for Martin HD-28VL

    The K&K is not an under saddle pickup. It mounts under the bridge plate, inside the guitar. I think it sounds better than an under saddle pickup (though I haven't played many).

  8. #8
    Forum Member ch willie's Avatar
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    Re: Under-Saddle Pup for Martin HD-28VL

    Thanks, Don. I know so little about the construction of acoustic guitars that I didn't know there was a bridge plate.
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  9. #9
    Forum Member Erock_Germany's Avatar
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    Re: Under-Saddle Pup for Martin HD-28VL

    Quote Originally Posted by Don View Post
    The K&K is not an under saddle pickup. It mounts under the bridge plate, inside the guitar. I think it sounds better than an under saddle pickup (though I haven't played many).
    Yes, this is the case and it does sound better than any under bridge system. IMHO, most basic under saddle systems sound tinny - may as well play an Ovation...

    The basic system is simply the pickup and jack with a preamp. The Trinity adds a microphone with a stereo jack to a preamp where you can blend the under saddle and mic - this is great for quieter playing and recording.

    I feed my preamp directly into a mixer, add a little reverb and I am good to go...have had mine close to 6 years now and have no troubles.

    I would highly recommend these products. You can buy directly from K&K AFAIK

    You can see the mic here...



    The System looks like this...

    "Sorry" - John Belushi as he smashed a guitar in Animal House

  10. #10
    Forum Member ch willie's Avatar
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    Re: Under-Saddle Pup for Martin HD-28VL

    Is the preamp necessary to get good sound? Again, I plead ignorance.
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  11. #11
    Forum Member Don's Avatar
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    Re: Under-Saddle Pup for Martin HD-28VL

    I bought a built in preamp with mine. It's not the same as Erock's. I have the UltraPure Mini system. The volume knob peeks out of the sound hole and the unit is held in the guitar with a magnet so I can remove it and tweak the eq.

    I don't know too much about these kinds of things but I like that the preamp gives me tone shaping capabilities. For instance, with light gauge strings it can sound bass heavy. That can be mostly dialed out. With heavy gauge strings it's more balanced so a more neutral setting can be used. Also, I can adjust my volume from the guitar while I'm playing.

    I plug straight into the PA and get a good sound. I don't recall if you can do that w/o a preamp.

    Visit K&K's site for more info.
    Last edited by Don; 02-11-2013 at 10:00 AM.

  12. #12
    Forum Member Wilko's Avatar
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    Re: Under-Saddle Pup for Martin HD-28VL

    I'd love to hear that system. I'm using the Fishman under saddle with the ellipse preamp that holds the mic in a similar way. The preamp attaches to the inside edge of the soundhole.

    Besides maybe not liking the sound...I'm curious as to why your people told you they couldn't do the very basic job of installing an under saddle pickup. Maybe just the pain of mating the tapered ends of the long saddle?

  13. #13
    Forum Member ch willie's Avatar
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    Re: Under-Saddle Pup for Martin HD-28VL

    From what I remember, the shop guy said that it wouldn't fit under the vintage-style saddle.
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  14. #14
    Forum Member blackonblack's Avatar
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    Re: Under-Saddle Pup for Martin HD-28VL

    Quote Originally Posted by Don View Post
    K&K Pure Mini from K&K Sound. It's very natural sounding and priced right.
    THIS!
    Mark

    Guitars: 79 Gibson Les Paul Std, Warmoth S Type, Godin Flat Five X, Duesenberg Starplayer TV, Gretsch White Falcon, Rickenbacker 360/12, Goodall Concert Jumbo, Guild 12 string, Guild Jumbo Junior, Lakland 55-02 Deluxe Ltd

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  15. #15
    Forum Member ch willie's Avatar
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    Re: Under-Saddle Pup for Martin HD-28VL

    Thanks, Guys. I bought it with 1-click at Amazon. Don, I think I'm getting what you got. Can't wait until it gets in so I can try to set it up (but will wind up getting my more nimble-fingered friend to do the work)/
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  16. #16
    Forum Member ch willie's Avatar
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    Re: Under-Saddle Pup for Martin HD-28VL

    Just got it installed by a friend with fingers more nimble than mine.

    Thank you, thank you for turning me onto the K&K. It's the most natural sounding acoustic "pickup" I've ever heard.

    I would have gone another, less ideal way if it hadn't been for the great advice I got here. Thanks, guys.
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  17. #17
    Forum Member Don's Avatar
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    Re: Under-Saddle Pup for Martin HD-28VL


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