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View Full Version : iRig Acoutic Stage sound hole mic



DownUpDave
03-19-2017, 03:21 AM
I received my iRig Acoutic Stage sound hole mic about one week ago. I was going to do a lengthy review with numerous sounds sample using multiple instruments. But to be honest I am not thrilled enough with it for the effort. This is not a knock on the product as a whole. It is well thought out, designed and made. The use of it and the end results are acceptable to good.

The mic is well designed and I tried it on 4 different instruments. Some of the sound boards were too thin and the fit was loose. A couple layers of tape applied to the back solves those issues. This mic clips onto the edge of the sound hole and plugs into a preamp that clips onto your belt or instrument strap if you use one. It can then plug into an amplifier. My main intention was to use this live on stage

The sound quality for the most part is good with a natural sound. It did sound a little boomy and bassy on baritones and my LfdM tenor. You can adjust your amp for this of course. The different tone settings work and work well. There is natural, warm and bright in both steel string and nylon mode. It does give distinct tones for each setting which is very helpful when switching from one instrument to another.

There is a blend feature that allows you to plug your pick up equipped instrument into the preamp. You can then blend the amount of sound from the pick up and the mic to tailor the sound. I was less than thrilled with the blend feature for a couple of reasons. First and foremost was the decrease in volume while in pick up mode. Next was the lack of accuracy while sweeping. It seemed to go from pick up into mic mode too quickly. It still worked just not as I would have liked. There were feedback issues that were very annoying. In the basement facing the amp from 15 ft away I was fine. In my dining room sitting beside or even behind the amp feedback was an issue. Enough so that I abandoned my recording attempts.

I seem to be bashing this a bit and that is not my intention. Here is the rub, on the 4 instruments that I have LR Baggs pickups installed they all sounded better played with the pick up then using the iRig. I have a Fishman loudbox mini and I know how to adjust the tone settings for each instrument to get the best sound.

Maybe as I spend more time with the iRig I will appreciate it more. I will say one thing that might sound obvious.....if your ukes don't have pick ups this unit is great. It gives a nice natural sound, you can tailor the tone to each instrument. It is easy and convient to go from one instrument to another. I just got a used Kamaka super concert without pick up and the iRig worked great and the uke sounded very natural through the amp. Again if your instruments don't have pick up this is a good solution.

Croaky Keith
03-19-2017, 03:51 AM
I presume you mean active as against passive pick ups in your last paragraph.

Doc_J
03-19-2017, 04:53 AM
Thanks Dave. I appreciate your review and calling it as you hear it.

DownUpDave
03-19-2017, 04:56 AM
I presume you mean active as against passive pick ups in your last paragraph.

Not sure what you mean Keith???? The iRig can be used with both passive and active as there is a preamp unit with the tone, volume and blend controls that clips on your belt.

My LR Baggs 5.0 pick ups are active if that is what you are referring to.

Croaky Keith
03-19-2017, 05:39 AM
Maybe as I spend more time with the iRig I will appreciate it more. I will say one thing that might sound obvious.....if your ukes don't have pick ups this unit is great. It gives a nice natural sound, you can tailor the tone to each instrument. It is easy and convient to go from one instrument to another. I just got a used Kamaka super concert without pick up and the iRig worked great and the uke sounded very natural through the amp. Again if your instruments don't have pick up this is a good solution.

Are you really saying no pick ups at all, or do you mean with passive pickups, as against active pickups?

DownUpDave
03-19-2017, 06:09 AM
Are you really saying no pick ups at all, or do you mean with passive pickups, as against active pickups?

Sorry.....I meant if your ukuleles do not have a pick up installed then the iRig acoustic stage is a great unit. You can use it with any uke or acoustic guitar. It really is nice, I was just playing a baritone with no pick up with the iRig plugged into the amp and it does sound nice. I just happen to like the sound and convience of the LR Baggs 5.0 pick ups. But for less than the price of one of those installed you can use the iRig with all your instruments

Here is a pic of the unit

98635

keod
03-19-2017, 06:57 AM
Really appreciate this review.
For me, it really helps to clarify where it works well, where it doesn't exactly shine, and why considering instruments with an LR Baggs, or equivalent, installed may be the best choice :-).

Croaky Keith
03-19-2017, 07:16 AM
....... you can use the iRig with all your instruments

Here is a pic of the unit

98635

Ah, my apologies, now I see, it comes with a clip on pick up system itself.

SoloRule
03-19-2017, 08:00 AM
Dave was at my house yesterday , we tested out this device. I thought it's sounded alright . To be fair, we just finished listening to Dave's Fisher with a proper pick up so noting sounds good after that.
If it is blue tooth, it would be a pretty cool thing to have. I just didn't like the wire hanging out of the sound port.
You can transfer it from instrument to instrument without the expense of installing pick up so it is still a cool device.
Anyway, after a full day of fun Dave and I ran out ( I was limping due to recent injury so running is the wrong word ) to buy a Yamaha AMP. I will let Dave do a review on the amp in another thread. So far I am enjoying the new found knowledge as I was very much against pick up!!

etudes
03-19-2017, 08:03 AM
Thanks for the review Dave. Sounds like an intriguing unit for certain situations. I have a soprano that I might want to occasionally perform with and this might be the ticket.

DownUpDave
03-19-2017, 08:18 AM
Thanks for the review Dave. Sounds like an intriguing unit for certain situations. I have a soprano that I might want to occasionally perform with and this might be the ticket.

I think it is definitely worth the money. It sounds good and you can use it on multiple instruments that don't have pick ups. As you know I am getting my Farallon without a pick up so my intension were to use this on it.............. and two baritones and another tenor and a super concert and a soprano. I need to sell more stuff :p

Brenda and I had a lot of fun testing out different instruments then buying matching amps. The Yamaha THR5A is a winner, for sure. I have a Fishman Loudbox mini which is excellent but the Yamaha will run off batteries, is so small but has a pile of features and sound real good.

etudes
03-19-2017, 09:22 AM
I think it is definitely worth the money. It sounds good and you can use it on multiple instruments that don't have pick ups. As you know I am getting my Farallon without a pick up so my intension were to use this on it.............. and two baritones and another tenor and a super concert and a soprano. I need to sell more stuff :p

Brenda and I had a lot of fun testing out different instruments then buying matching amps. The Yamaha THR5A is a winner, for sure. I have a Fishman Loudbox mini which is excellent but the Yamaha will run off batteries, is so small but has a pile of features and sound real good.

Look forward to hearing how the Farallon works with the iRig. I just plugged mine in last night for the first time and it sounds good, nice warm tone even running everything flat, but I do need to dial in the EQ when I have a spare hour. I agree the Loudbox amps are amazing, I had the artist model for awhile but now have the Baggs Acoustic Reference which is great. For the amount of times I play live these days I have too many amps, but this Yamaha looks intriguing!

SailingUke
03-20-2017, 05:09 AM
I liked the unit. I was interested in the cancel feedback feature. It was an easy one button solution, but took out to much tone.
The mic was awesome on guitar and uke, but I have pickups in most of my instruments.

Rrgramps
03-21-2017, 02:34 AM
These are ALT-pickup transducers that hold so much promise, but tend to have lesser results than the internal pickups. Amazon and other online sellers are ripe with the adhesive style transducers, and many of them are priced less than $20. It is tempting to get a bunch of them and test them out. I'm not sure I would want to invest the time though, considering how good my Misi sounds. I'm thinking you get what your u pay for, on these thing-ies. But in a pinch, say on open mic night, they might get you through.

I rarely plug-in at home though, and home is where I play, mostly.