Results 1 to 12 of 12

Thread: Pickup carpenter jack suppressing the acoustic sound?

  1. #1
    Registered User Drew Streip's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2016
    Location
    Chattanooga, TN
    Posts
    369
    Blog Entries
    2

    Question Pickup carpenter jack suppressing the acoustic sound?

    Hey all, I just installed a K&K Twin Fusion in my Eastman MD515. Haven't even gotten to plug it in yet, so I'm just reporting on the fit. Install was easy, it's not in my way at all, and it will greatly improve the flexibility of our live shows.

    HOWEVER: Do any of you notice a decrease in acoustic volume / tone while using a clamp-on carpenter jack? My band's fiddle player also installed a bridge-mounted carpenter jack pickup, and she says it pretty drastically mutes her instrument.

    I'm wondering if the clamp pressure stops the soundboard from vibrating to the fullest.

    From what I could tell, if there's a difference at all, it's very slight. I'll have to experiment more --- just seeking other opinions for now. (FWIW, I wasn't in a great acoustic environment and I need new strings too, so I could chalk some of it up to that).

  2. #2
    Chu Dat Frawg Eric C.'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Northeast Ohio
    Posts
    587

    Default Re: Pickup carpenter jack suppressing the acoustic sound?

    It clamps to the edge of the instrument, where the top and bottom is glued to the sides. The clamp isn't suppressing anything or preventing vibration, as there's really no vibration at the sides.
    Kentucky KM950 and loving it.

  3. #3
    Registered User Mandobart's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Washington State
    Posts
    2,891

    Default Re: Pickup carpenter jack suppressing the acoustic sound?

    The carpenter jack mount has no more effect than an armrest on a mando or chinrest on a fiddle. Any contact of the instrument against your arm or body will have a greater effect. Without seeing your fiddle player's setup I can't confidently comment, but if it clamps the bridge at all that would work just like a mute.

  4. The following members say thank you to Mandobart for this post:


  5. #4
    Registered User Drew Streip's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2016
    Location
    Chattanooga, TN
    Posts
    369
    Blog Entries
    2

    Default Re: Pickup carpenter jack suppressing the acoustic sound?

    That's kind of what I thought; otherwise they wouldn't be so widely used.

    This is the pickup in question: http://schattendesign.com/vvm.htm

    The sensor just sticks to the bridge with putty, which is good for her because she plays classical too (and apparently the orchestra turns down its collective nose at anything not traditional).

    It could just be a perception thing too. I can't confidently say one way or the other for her.

  6. #5

    Default Re: Pickup carpenter jack suppressing the acoustic sound?

    The part clamped to the edge of the violin won't affect much. The part stuck to the bridge definitely will act as a mute.

  7. #6
    Registered User sblock's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Redwood City, CA
    Posts
    1,985

    Default Re: Pickup carpenter jack suppressing the acoustic sound?

    No, carpenter jacks don't really affect the sound of the mandolin. They do not disturb the freedom of the soundboards (top & back) to move, and that's the most important thing. They do, however, add a (small!) amount of mass to the instrument overall, and so it is not inconceivable that a well-trained ear might be able to discern a tiny difference. But adding an armrest does the same thing, and adding a ToneGard adds even more mass, yet (almost) no one complains about these things. As to whether the tiny perturbation of the jack makes the instrument sound better, worse, or the same, that's up to your personal judgement.

    That said, I have even heard some mandolinists claim that supporting the instrument with a leather strap changes the sound! I have no idea what they are hearing ... or just think they're hearing.

  8. The following members say thank you to sblock for this post:


  9. #7
    Registered User Drew Streip's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2016
    Location
    Chattanooga, TN
    Posts
    369
    Blog Entries
    2

    Default Re: Pickup carpenter jack suppressing the acoustic sound?

    Quote Originally Posted by sblock View Post
    That said, I have even heard some mandolinists claim that supporting the instrument with a leather strap changes the sound! I have no idea what they are hearing ... or just think they're hearing.
    Well, lucky for me, now I can just drown out any changes with on-board amplification! And I'm keeping my strap too -- the whole reason for getting a pickup is so I'm not chained to a 3-inch zone in front of a condenser mic.

  10. #8
    Gummy Bears and Scotch BrianWilliam's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Summit County Colorado
    Posts
    987

    Default Re: Pickup carpenter jack suppressing the acoustic sound?

    I didn't notice a change with my baggs radius. I'm just not a fan of the sound of that pickup but that's unrelated.

  11. #9
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Berkeley, CA
    Posts
    1,629

    Default Re: Pickup carpenter jack suppressing the acoustic sound?

    If she's using the Schatten P/U shown, I'd suspect any damping effect is more from the P/U clamped to the bridge than from the Carpenter jack. As others have said, a Carpenter jack clamps to the rim of the instrument where there's very little in the way of vibration.
    EdSherry

  12. #10
    Registered User Kevin K's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Location
    West Tennessee
    Posts
    1,212

    Default Re: Pickup carpenter jack suppressing the acoustic sound?

    I just did some A B testing last night and can hear a difference with the carpenter jack on and with it off and while I really wanted to try out the pickup setup, the difference I hear acoustically makes we just want to stick with using a mic instead. The jack is basically on the rim and when I have the it barely one there, no change, but when I start to snug it down, it does restrict and compress the sound. I wish there was a way around this.
    "Can I have a little more talent in the monitors please?"

  13. #11
    coprolite mandroid's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Location
    Outer Spiral Arm, of Galaxy, NW Oregon.
    Posts
    15,654

    Default Re: Pickup carpenter jack suppressing the acoustic sound?

    Add to the cork sitting on the very enge to get more clearance over the top if it Is an issue.




    (It is practical (?) to both use the Pickup for your monitor signal, and play into a Microphone,
    for the House sound..




    '/,
    Last edited by mandroid; Oct-08-2016 at 4:14pm.
    writing about music
    is like dancing,
    about architecture

  14. #12
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Columbus, GA
    Posts
    1,047

    Default Re: Pickup carpenter jack suppressing the acoustic sound?

    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin K View Post
    I just did some A B testing last night and can hear a difference with the carpenter jack on and with it off and while I really wanted to try out the pickup setup, the difference I hear acoustically makes we just want to stick with using a mic instead. The jack is basically on the rim and when I have the it barely one there, no change, but when I start to snug it down, it does restrict and compress the sound. I wish there was a way around this.
    I did that same test on two different occasions: once with the arm rest and once with a pickup. I never noticed a difference whatsoever in the sound.
    David Hopkins

    Breedlove Legacy FF; Breedlove Quartz FF
    Gibson F-4, (1916); Blevins Octave Mandolin, 2018
    McCormick Oval Sound Hole "Reinhardt"
    McCormick Solid Body F-Style Electric;
    Recording King Resophonic Mandolin; Slingerland Songbird Guitar (c. 1939)

    The older I get, the less tolerant I am of political correctness, incompetence and stupidity.

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •