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Piezo and bridge coupling

Discussion in 'Amps, Mics & Pickups [DB]' started by mheintz, Jul 6, 2005.


  1. mheintz

    mheintz

    Nov 18, 2004
    There is an interesting thread on piezos at http://www.talkbass.com/forum/showthread.php?t=184648

    In the thread, Rick Turner stresses the importance of coupling the piezo element to the bridge.

    I noticed that the D-Tar pickup installation instructions (http://www.d-tar.com/ac_double_bass.shtml) suggest double sided tape or crazy glue. I have an older Fishman piezo which I use with the small metal clamps that were originally sold with the pickup. I have heard that the application of pressure on the piezos reduces its ability to respond to vibrations.

    What is the best method of coupling such pickups to the bridge? Does the coupling method make a difference for arco or pizz playing?
     
  2. Bob Gollihur

    Bob Gollihur GollihurMusic.com

    Mar 22, 2000
    New Joisey Shore
    Big Cheese Emeritus: Gollihur Music
    I prefer using adhesive rather than clamps. The D-TAR pickup you reference is made by K&K Sound (their Big Twin; their Double Big Twin is the one with four, rather than two transducers across the top of the bridge). They provide a very thin adhesive that allows a very tight connection to the bridge; thicker tapes or adhesives can isolate it more and lessen the output.

    Pressure on piezos can increase their voltage output, but as you might imagine there is good pressure (changing with and reflecting the vibrations of the instrument) and bad pressure (no changes).
     
  3. mheintz

    mheintz

    Nov 18, 2004
    Thanks. It may be time for an upgrade anyways.
     
  4. drurb

    drurb Oracle, Ancient Order of Rass Hattur; Mem. #1, EPC

    Apr 17, 2004
  5. Rick Turner

    Rick Turner Commercial User

    Jul 14, 2004
    I design and build electric basses and pickups under the Turner, Renaissance, and Electroline brand names.
    For uprights, I use very different geometry for piezo installations (I'm referring to my custom upright installations with the UB-1 pickups...) than I do in electric basses. The force vectors of plucking and bowing are different, and then there's the whole string to wood issue. Still, some of the principals remain the same...very close contact, even pressure, and isolation between string input and pickup foundation.

    Too many URB pickups either do OK with pizz and not with arco, or vice versa. I've even seen systems that have a switch to flick depending on whether you are doing one or the other, and I've heard very few URB pickups that could do either style with similar output. Oh, well!
     
  6. Rick Turner

    Rick Turner Commercial User

    Jul 14, 2004
    I design and build electric basses and pickups under the Turner, Renaissance, and Electroline brand names.
    For uprights, I use very different geometry for piezo installations (I'm referring to my custom upright installations with the UB-1 pickups...) than I do in electric basses. The force vectors of plucking and bowing are different, and then there's the whole string to wood issue. Still, some of the principals remain the same...very close contact, even pressure, and isolation between string input and pickup foundation.

    Too many URB pickups either do OK with pizz and not with arco, or vice versa. I've even seen systems that have a switch to flick depending on whether you are doing one or the other, and I've heard very few URB pickups that could do either style with similar output. Oh, well!

    I'm working on a new design that I hope combines the sound of my UB-1 with the ease of installation of the Wilson pickup. When I get it worked out, it will come out as a D-TAR product.