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Seeking good live tone into PA...

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jawjatek
Posted 2017-08-27 12:45 PM (#537221)
Subject: Seeking good live tone into PA...



Joined:
January 2017
Posts: 18

Location: N ATL metro

I have 2 Ovations, a 10th anniversary model and a Custom Legend. Running them into my Soundcraft mixer via a hi-Z input yields a plinky, quacky piezo tone. I can't do anything with it, eq is not really helping.

I play fiddle tunes, reels, and bluegrass stuff, instrumentals mostly. My main guitar is a D-18 with a Baggs Lyric which sounds quite decent plugged straight in, but I am going to have to mic the Ovations, as the DI sound is unacceptable to me.

Very interested in hearing your tricks, devices, and how some of y'all get a decent live tone from one of these. Not totally against taking out the Ovation guts and going with something else. 



Edited by jawjatek 2017-08-27 1:01 PM
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ProfessorBB
Posted 2017-08-28 8:53 AM (#537229 - in reply to #537221)
Subject: Re: Seeking good live tone into PA...



Joined:
January 2006
Posts: 5740

Location: Colorado Rocky Mountains
My best sound is through a Zoom A2.1u into an acoustic amp which sends an xlr signal to the house. However, most of the gigs we do these days are classic rock for which I use my Adamas 1187 on just a few songs. Therefore, no need to clutter the floor even further with the acoustic pedal for so few songs, so I just use a nice clean preset on the Boss multi with just a touch of reverb. If I use any of the acoustic presets, I get that same quacky sound you do.
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71Jasper
Posted 2017-08-30 2:49 PM (#537247 - in reply to #537221)
Subject: Re: Seeking good live tone into PA...


Joined:
November 2009
Posts: 80

Mine is a C2079LX with an Op-Pro Studio. I send it to a Baggs PADI then to the board. I get the sound I want, but that sound may or may not be at variance with the sound you're looking for.
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jawjatek
Posted 2017-09-05 12:54 PM (#537321 - in reply to #537221)
Subject: Re: Seeking good live tone into PA...



Joined:
January 2017
Posts: 18

Location: N ATL metro

I get a good tone - using a SDC mic! I tried it thru my Baggs Para DI but no joy. I put a Baggs Lyric in my D-18 and it sounds fabulous. I may try putting one in the O temporarily to see if it works/fits. Heres a recording of the guitar:

soundcloud

 



Edited by jawjatek 2017-09-05 1:01 PM
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alpep
Posted 2017-09-06 9:53 AM (#537329 - in reply to #537221)
Subject: Re: Seeking good live tone into PA...


Joined:
December 2001
Posts: 9971

Location: NJ
direct
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jawjatek
Posted 2017-09-13 9:38 AM (#537397 - in reply to #537221)
Subject: Re: Seeking good live tone into PA...



Joined:
January 2017
Posts: 18

Location: N ATL metro

Sorry, Al. Not sure what your terse reply implies... I am intending to go direct, but the direct sound out of the Ovation is not useful for my purpose. I am thinking of upgrading the bridge transducer to a Fishman matrix or other UST, and retrofitting the controls to use the stock early-80's Ovation vol/tone knob. Then if I run that into the Fishman Aura or similar sampled system like a ToneDexter, I should be able to get a nice bluegrass tone direct. I am very happy with the Baggs Lyric in the D-18. Here's a direct to the board recording of that (excuse the rough playing, just learning the tune):

https://soundcloud.com/joelbluesguitar/rough-mockingbird



Edited by jawjatek 2017-09-13 9:43 AM
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Mr. Ovation
Posted 2017-09-13 7:36 PM (#537399 - in reply to #537397)
Subject: Re: Seeking good live tone into PA...


Joined:
December 2001
Posts: 6883

Location: The Great Pacific Northwest
I initially missed your first sentence... as I was reading replies... "I have 2 Ovations, a 10th anniversary model and a Custom Legend. Running them into my Soundcraft mixer via a hi-Z input yields a plinky, quacky piezo tone. I can't do anything with it, eq is not really helping."

My response to this is something is wrong. Is the Phantom power turned on for the input channels you are using? That would cause that exact sound. I think what Al was referencing was use a Direct box, even on the XLR out of the guitar. Something is wrong...


=== this was my original response ===

In general, since the Ovation pre-amp has existed.. the phrase "but the direct sound out of the Ovation is not useful for my purpose" has rarely ever been said. I'm not saying this as a fan, but as a sound guy and recording engineer. In the 80's and 90's, regardless of what fancy box appeared with an artist on stage, there is a high degree of chance at least some part of the recording was done in studio on an Ovation specifically because of the pre-amp they use.

Now I did listen to your clip, and you do have challenge. You want to use a combination of a low-cut and low frequency removal. I didn't run the recording through my analyzer, but it sounds at first review that you have several lower frequencies scooped out. Also, you have lots of finger and fret noise, which for the style is fine.

My recommendation is to run the Ovation pre-amp and also mic the guitar, specifically somewhere along the neck.
Ovation is great at picking up the "realness" but mixing in a 2nd mic will help you dial it in.

Basically it sounds like you want to take a state of the art sound source, and make it sound old-timey. I had to do this once for a client. Basically he wanted it to start out old-timey and smoothly blend into a modern sound. It was not an easy task.

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alpep
Posted 2017-09-14 9:56 AM (#537401 - in reply to #537221)
Subject: Re: Seeking good live tone into PA...


Joined:
December 2001
Posts: 9971

Location: NJ
I have never generally got a bad sound out of any of my ovations direct.
the preamp in it has to be one of the best and a standard in the industry.

in fact many people marvel at the sound out of the ovation especially after they just spent 20 minutes saying how they hate them etc etc

now I particularly like the op pro studio and find that to sound great.
the vip with the adjustable aura settings just did not do it for me but then I was not searching for something more than what I was getting out of the guitar YMMV

the magic of ovations is that you can get a great sound out of them no matter what pa you are using a cheap one or a million dollar one and I think that is part of the appeal especially to the praise/workship folks who go from venue to venue not knowing what to expect for amplification.

the appeal for most of the Ovation is the piezo sound.

IMHO the vol/tone preamp is very primative

not exactly sure what you are searching for
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ProfessorBB
Posted 2017-09-16 5:42 AM (#537420 - in reply to #537221)
Subject: Re: Seeking good live tone into PA...



Joined:
January 2006
Posts: 5740

Location: Colorado Rocky Mountains
I also typically bypass the eq settings on the Ovation preamps and just run the guitars flat to the pedals.
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jawjatek
Posted 2017-09-16 6:17 PM (#537426 - in reply to #537221)
Subject: Re: Seeking good live tone into PA...



Joined:
January 2017
Posts: 18

Location: N ATL metro
It is absolutely not a phantom power issue; on the soundcraft mixer the phantom power is only applied to the XLR input and not the Hi-Z 1/4" jack (I confirmed with my Fluke meter - very experienced engineer here btw). The Ovation preamp in these guitars is a simple FET circuit with no para eq, only vol/tone knobs. You can't compare it to an Op-Pro. I guess I just don't like the stock Ovation sound for bluegrass. For use in a rock band situation it would probably be fine. For now I'll just mic the Ovations.
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Jon Clinch
Posted 2017-09-17 5:52 PM (#537439 - in reply to #537221)
Subject: Re: Seeking good live tone into PA...


Joined:
April 2017
Posts: 6

I understand what you're saying, jawjatek. My beloved 1976 Folklore 1114 was recently refurbed at the mother ship — including a new vintage-style pickup and preamp with V/T control — but the sad truth is that it just doesn't cut it for me. Acoustically, it's magnificent. Plug it in, and you get uneven sound from string to string, big-time feedback around the low A (and elsewhere), plus that general quackiness. I brought it to a gig in a distant location a few days ago but had a last-minute hesitation about it while I was loading the car, so I threw in my new Guild M-20 (Baggs something-or-other under the saddle). After horsing around with the Folklore for too long at sound check — running through a BOSS AD-2 preamp into a BOSE ToneMatch T1, into a BOSE L1 Compact — I gave up and used the Guild. I sure do wish I could tame the darned thing. Part of the problem — the feedback issue — has to do with the nature of the guitar itself. I had a K&K in there for a while a couple of years ago, and it fed back with that as well...

Edited by Jon Clinch 2017-09-17 5:54 PM
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