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View Full Version : Need pickup advice for KoAloha Tenor



jgeary
02-02-2017, 08:34 AM
Hi all,
I just purchased a rather inexpensive KoAloha Opio Spruce/Acaia tenor. It is really fantastic - sounds great, so smooth and easy to play. I'm actually surprised, knowing that it was not made in Hawaii.

My question - in the past, I have used the K&K twinspot pickup on KoAloha tenors. I know people rave about the Misi. I have one on another uke but so far I'm not that impressed - could be the uke, could be the amp I used that day.

I'd appreciate any suggestions or experience you've had with pickups and KoAlohas. I'd like to install the pickup very soon. Right now I'm leaning toward the K & K.

Thanks!
Jill

DownUpDave
02-02-2017, 09:31 AM
Although I am a dyed in the wool LR Baggs 5.0 guy....... I would suggest you stick with the K&K that you love. There is a big difference in sound between an under saddle (in MiSi or Baggs) and a soundboard pick up like the K&K. That might have been why you didn't like the MiSi you heard???

lfoo6952
02-02-2017, 10:13 AM
Jill: I'm with you on this one. I too have a K&K aloha twin on one uke and a Misi pickup on another uke. The one with the K&K is cleaner and faithfully reproduces the sound, whereas the one with the Misi pickup is giving me a slight low level hum.

sam13
02-02-2017, 10:14 AM
Although I am a dyed in the wool LR Baggs 5.0 guy....... I would suggest you stick with the K&K that you love. There is a big difference in sound between an under saddle (in MiSi or Baggs) and a soundboard pick up like the K&K. That might have been why you didn't like the MiSi you heard???

I am with Dave ... LR Baggs 5.0.

Osprey
02-02-2017, 10:54 AM
L R Baggs 5.0. +3. I really like my Córdoba Tenor with the L R Baggs.

Farp
02-02-2017, 11:42 AM
I'm going with the new iRig Acoustic Stage. It can be switched between instruments--not permanently installed. There is a thread in the Audio/Visual section on the forum. For $99, it has everything beat.

Brad Bordessa
02-03-2017, 10:31 AM
Baggs. Though it depends on what application you'll be using it in. It's the beesknees live, but if you don't play loud that much, the K&K might give you a more true sound. I'd still take the Baggs, but to each their own...

I think Brittni was using the Five-0 right before she switched to playing Kamaka ukes. Might give you an idea what it sounds like in a KoAloha.

DownUpDave
02-03-2017, 10:39 AM
Baggs. Though it depends on what application you'll be using it in. It's the beesknees live, but if you don't play loud that much, the K&K might give you a more true sound. I'd still take the Baggs, but to each their own...

I think Brittni was using the Five-0 right before she switched to playing Kamaka ukes. Might give you an idea what it sounds like in a KoAloha.

Good call.....also Koaloha installs the LR Baggs stock in their slim line tenors. I am sure you could find some sound samples on line. If Koaloha likes them enough to install them into their tenors.........well, enough said.

jgeary
02-03-2017, 12:08 PM
Thanks everyone! I also have the KoAloha Slimline too. I had some issues with it once so that makes me a little nervous. I guess the battery life on it is like 300 hours, but I have this concern of the battery failing at just the wrong time!
I've heard also that the Baggs is more difficult to install. We have some pretty good luthiers around here, but I don't know.... So those have been my reasons for sticking with leaning toward the passive. Having said that, if a luthier puts the K & K dots in the less-than-optimal place then that is not helpful either!
I appreciate all the comments - I'm still deciding!
Jill

Choirguy
02-03-2017, 12:52 PM
Hi all,
I just purchased a rather inexpensive KoAloha Opio Spruce/Acaia tenor.

I want to know what "rather inexpensive" means. :)

DownUpDave
02-03-2017, 02:49 PM
I want to know what "rather inexpensive" means. :)

That means approx $600.00 compared to approx $1100.00 for the KTM-00. Everything is relative. ;)

jgeary
02-03-2017, 04:40 PM
Choirguy, I bought the KoAloha Opio from a fellow UU'er for $600 including the case and shipping :-)

Choirguy
02-03-2017, 06:23 PM
I was wondering if you had a source for inexpensive Opios. I love mine. The only thing that could make me love it more would be a radius fingerboard. That's the only thing I would change.

The Ukulele Site has a Spruce/Acacia Tenor that is just gnawing at my brain.

jgeary
02-04-2017, 05:56 PM
Hi Choirguy, I really, really like the spruce/acacia Opio. Nope, no special place to buy one - just a UU who saw my "WTB KoAloha spruce/rosewood" and he contacted me and told me he was selling the Opio. I didn't think I would like it but I'm glad I gave it a try - I love it! And this wood combination really works well together. I do have a PhD low G on it (with the Worths) - it just seems to tone down the beefy G a little.
I wish they had a radius too. I much prefer it. But this Opio plays better and easier than my custom 'uke that does have a radius....

Brad Bordessa
02-04-2017, 06:37 PM
Thanks everyone! I also have the KoAloha Slimline too. I had some issues with it once so that makes me a little nervous. I guess the battery life on it is like 300 hours, but I have this concern of the battery failing at just the wrong time!
I've heard also that the Baggs is more difficult to install. We have some pretty good luthiers around here, but I don't know.... So those have been my reasons for sticking with leaning toward the passive. Having said that, if a luthier puts the K & K dots in the less-than-optimal place then that is not helpful either!
I appreciate all the comments - I'm still deciding!
Jill

Battery life may be 300 hours, but "good" battery life is a lot less. You'll probably notice it sounding bad before it really runs out. I change it every few "big gigs" because I like the way it sounds fresh, not because it's ever stopped working.

No doubt it's harder to install. Lots of things are hard. Are they not often worth it? IMO, if you don't trust a luthier to do more than a K&K, I wouldn't want them touching my instrument at all. But if you've got someone you trust, do what is going to work best for you.

jgeary
02-06-2017, 10:05 AM
Thanks Brad. Good tip about the Baggs battery. I love your music, btw.

Jill