Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by SuperDuck, Oct 23, 2000.

  1. SuperDuck


    Sep 26, 2000
    ok, everyone is talking about piezos, and i don't even know how they work. i know how magnetic pickups work, and i read about those funky lightwave pickups, but i was wondering about the "traditional" piezos, how they work, and what kind of sound they produce.
  2. Christopher


    Apr 28, 2000
    New York, NY
    Traditional piezos are made out of high resistance materials (typically silicon or quartz crystals and/or plastic films) which generate current if they are physically deformed by acoustic vibrations. Because of their high resistance, piezos are usually paired with an active preamp. On bass guitars, you usually see them incorporated in bridge saddles, though you could conceivably place them anywhere on the instrument. Soundwise, they are supposed to impart a more "acoustic" tone than magnetic pickups. This isn't really the case; while they sound different from magnetic pickups, they still sound fairly electric. The piezo's I've heard are quacky; very thin and trebly and generally unsuitable for bass guitars unless combined with signals from magnetic pickups. This problem apparently has been remedied with the latest generation of piezos, as there are a number of instruments, such as the Turner Renaissance and the Rob Allen, which rely solely on piezos for their sound and have been getting rave reviews.