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First post: new old guy wants everything, everywhere, etc.

Feb 29, 2024 - 7:42:05 AM



2 posts since 2/29/2024

Hi, 63YO hobbyist guitar and mandolin player here. In two bands ATM, and use a dobro for open G guitar parts with at least one other standard tuned guitarist, electric bass and sometimes keys.

Maybe I am not using correct search terms but don’t find recent thread about pickups…

I have a budget Fender Paramount round neck that I like well enough. The factory pickup does a fair job especially for my use case. I am toying with adding a magnetic pickup at the neck to use in stereo for the louder tunes and am deep in the rabbit hole now.

Ordered a cheapo Artec Johnny Smith style “surface mount” but the lead comes out of the bottom and without drilling a hole in the Fender, the pickup makes contact.

I guess the Lace Sensor may be a decent quality alternative, but I hate to throw ~$100 out the window.

What say use guys (that’s Jersey for y’all) ?

Feb 29, 2024 - 1:06:48 PM

4692 posts since 7/27/2008

Well I'm originally a north Jersey boy myself (Scotch Plains) but my family moved cross country to the Bay Area back in the '60s when I was nine. I have lived in Northern California ever since.

The best thing out there in my opinion for a surface mounted magnetic pickup that doesn't sound too electric guitarish is the made in Oregon Krivo resophonic pickup. Easily removable when you don't need it, mounts with putty bewteen the end of the neck and the coverplate.

Is this guitar the recently introduced Fender Paramount as in the video below? I haven't tried one out in a shop yet, and though I play standard guitar, as far as resonators like the majority of us here, I'm a lap style player. The video and Fender marketing push does make me laugh - they are promoting this guitar as a "bluegrass" model. Bluegrass reso players don't play bottleneck slide  - some might play bottleneck as an occasional alternative - but it ain't bluegrass.

To get beyond the bluegrass rant, if you have the same guitar, it is already equipped with the best under the saddle pickup ever made for resos, the Fishman Nashville. I don't think the guy in the video is using any sound enhancement, he seems to be plugging it straight in, and I hear  piezo pickup "quack."  Most of us who play lap style with a guitar having the Nashville pickup tame the quack and enhance the sound by running it through the Fishman Aura Jerry Douglas pedal, or the Fishman Aura Spectrum pedal. These are other devices that work, but the Nashville pickup and Aura boxes were designed to work as a team.

To occasionally get a beefier sound in loud situations,  Jerry Douglas (and others) have a Jason Lollar reproduction Teisco style foil pickup between the neck and the coverplate. 

You can run into a lot of money with these options to enhance a $550 guitar, but the cool thing about the Paramount, along with the Nashville equipped Gretsch resonators which are actually produced and distributed by Fender, is that if one were to buy the pickup on its own as an aftermarket item they go for around $210 -  and can be tricky to install. 

I'm throwing out a lot of info for someone who is new to amplifying a resonator guitar, I'll stop for now so you can let it sink in.

Edited by - MarkinSonoma on 02/29/2024 13:09:09

Mar 1, 2024 - 6:17:12 AM



2 posts since 2/29/2024

That is the guitar; it's a pretty good value all around, and The Fishman was one of the deciding factors for me. The darn case is better than the one my Martin came with.

My idea was to add another pup and run it thru a separate signal chain (including amp) for the louder rock tunes. Kinda/sorta more towards 'steel guitar' than reso I guess.

We rarely gig and the rehearsal space is equipped with tons of gear; if I can find a reasonably priced pup I can experiment with heads, cabs, effects, etc.. And if it was a removable install without drilling or cutting, all the better to reverse.

Thanks for your time MarkinSonoma !

Mar 21, 2024 - 7:37:55 PM
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427 posts since 9/9/2016

Just to clarify- You are seeking an " electric - ish " tone on purpose, for specific songs in rock ish or heavy blue ish vein.

There are some ready made options , but you will have to reconsider your price point .

Krivo - $229
Lace Ultra Slim Humbucker - $169
Lace " Dobro Round Neck PU " ( single coil) - $ 109

Fishman Aura preamp/ tone box - $ 429

Plan B - DIY project to adapt Chinese knock off pickup . Either cutting the bracket off an acoustic sound hole PU , and figuring double side tape , or adapting an electric guitar PU . If you dig thru the GFS website thru the " specialty sizes " , there are some surface mount possibilities.

Or plan C - The cost of the Fishman Aura would put you in the price range of several purpose built instruments that might be meant for what I'm conceiving that your looking for . They are thinner bodied , with Biscuit cones , with magnetic electric pickups built in .

Dean CE Cutway , Danelectro '59 , and Recording King Dirty 30's Mini Bucker . Of those three , the RK would be most Reso like played acoustically.

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