Piezo Pickup

The Best Piezo Pickup for your Instrument (2021) + Buying Guide

In this article we will talk about the Best Piezo Pickup for your beloved stringed instrument.

We once covered the Piezo Pickup in our article on the Truth About Different Types of Guitar Pickups.”

Piezo pickups are a type of guitar pickup that uses the piezoelectric effect. 

The Piezo pickups are small devices that convert vibration into electricity. They were originally invented in the 1880s, and they can be found on many objects such as cameras or phones today. 

Piezo is a Greek word meaning to press tight. It was named for its ability to generate an electrical current when pressed against any object with vibrations like fingers tapping on tables or drums being hit by sticks.

The development of this technology has played a key role in making our world more accessible. This is due to their affordability and versatility among other qualities.

It’s basically what most people call “the modern day soundboard” because it amplifies and changes vibrations or acoustic signals into electronic sounds. These electric sounds can be manipulated with any sort of effects pedal you want! 

Piezo Pickup vs Magnetic 

Where the Piezo Pickup converts the vibrations into electrical currents to produce the sound, a magnetic pickup is composed of copper wire carefully wound around either one or more magnets, depending on how many strings are being used. 

The vibrations from these metal strings create electrical currents. The currents eventually become amplified through various amplifiers such as those found in speakers or headphones.

The amplification of acoustic guitars, cigar box guitars, banjos, fiddles, and upright basses, is where you will see a Piezo pickup in action. 

Let’s take a look at some of the best piezo pickups available and the pros and cons of each. 

Best For Acoustic Guitar

TraderPlus 2Pcs Piezo Contact Microphone Pickup

A piezo contact microphone pickup is the best way to amplify the sound of your guitar with perfect clarity! 

With this, you’re able to eliminate external sound interference and not be influenced by sound reflections from nearby objects. 

Stop fighting the feedback of your live performance and capture studio recording quality sound with this cool piezo contact microphone pickup for guitars, violin, banjo, mandolin, ukulele or any other acoustic instrument! 

The 10.6″ cable provides plenty of space to put some tape or self-adhesive Velcro on for maximum effect. The 1/4″ jack fits in any amp perfectly and eliminates external sound interference from occurring. 

All you need to do is plug it into your amp, bass amp or other recording equipment — BOOM! Perfect sound clarity!

Pros

Pros:

  • Cost effective. 
  • Amplify your guitar, mandolin, banjo, ukulele, violin, and cello. 
  • Eliminates external sounds. 
  • Comes with double sided tape and Velcro for mounting. 
  • Easy to install. 
  • Can be removed at any time. 

Cons

Cons: 

  • Adhesive is not as sticky to stay mounted for long periods of time. 

VIEW ON AMAZON

 

Luvay Piezo Acoustic Pickup

The inventive Luvay Pickup System is an ingenious way to convert your acoustic instrument into a gorgeous electric. 

The Luvay Pickup System has a pre-wired, no soldering required design. It can be quickly and easily installed without any expert background knowledge of electronics. 

Just feed your guitar’s sound hole with the side wire coming off from one transducer at pickup’s body or near the backside of the bridge. Next, connect them to Output Line Jack with other two wires coming off from another transducer (included). 

Then you’re ready to start shaping your tone through effects pedals if you’d like.  

The transparency in sound will amaze you if you are using a guitar, ukulele, violin or other acoustic string instrument. 

The pickup is pre-wired and ready-to-go. You just clip it in place and you can be up and running without any need for soldering or knowledge of electrical engineering! 

The Luvay Piezo Acoustic Pickup will have you sounding great wherever you go. You just plug in and play away at parties, open mics, clubs, or coffee shops.

Pros

Pros:

  • Perfect for guitar, ukulele, and violin. 
  • Includes ¼ jack. 
  • No battery needed. 
  • Easy to install. 
  • Features reusable self-adhesive.
  • No soldering required.  

Cons

Cons:

  • Does not have a volume control. 

VIEW ON AMAZON

 

KNA NG-1 Piezo Pickup for Nylon String Guitar

The KNA NG-1 piezo pickup for nylon string guitar delivers the natural sound of your instrument and allows it to be heard as it should be. 

No modifications to your instrument are necessary. This lightweight and unobtrusive pick up features a wooden sensor casing that’s easy to use and quick and easy to install. 

Plus, with 8 foot detachable cable, you’ll never have an issue bringing music with you on the go!

It’s no secret that most acoustic nylon string guitars are naturally quiet instruments and don’t have great sound fidelity to begin with. Why go through all the pain of installing some cumbersome mic when there’s an easy solution like this pickup? 

Pros

Pros:

  • Natural sound for your nylon guitar. 
  • Lightweight and easy to install. 
  • Detachable. 
  • Comes with an 8 foot cable. 
  • Clear and clear sound.
  • Great alternative to tonewood amp.  

Cons

Cons: 

  • Prone to feedback. 
  • Fragile. Need to handle it with care. 

VIEW ON AMAZON

 

Best Piezo Pickup For Banjo

KNA BP-1 Piezo Pickup for Banjo

Now you can effectively amplify the natural sound of your banjo without modification to your stringed instrument. 

The wooden casing is lightweight and unobtrusive while providing a convenient attachment point for the 1/4” cable. This may also be detached when not in use. 

KNA BP-1 Piezo Pickup works with any acoustic instrument with metal strings that has enough room on top to attach it securely. It can work with banjos, guitars and violins.

A long overdue accessory for the banjo player, this piezo pickup turns your beloved instrument into an acoustic amplifier. 

Providing great flexibility, just detach it when you’re not utilizing it – or don’t! 

Leave it sticking on and plugged up because this sound hole-based unit is completely detachable.

Pros

Pros:

  • Provides a clear and natural tone to your banjo. 
  • Plugs right into any 1/4 inch jack for amps.
  • Easy to install. 
  • Wooden sensor casing. 
  • Detachable. 
  • No modification needed to your banjo. 

Cons

Cons: 

  • Tends to slip from the bridge. 

VIEW ON AMAZON

 

Best Piezo Pickup for Double Bass 

Northern Lutherie Blueberry Pi Upright Bass Pickup

Here is a pickup designed for the underrated upright bass! 

The 20mm sensor has made it possible for people to have uncompromised sound while using their traditional instrument of choice. 

Handmade in the USA, there’s never been an easier way to forge into another era of the world’s favorite instrument.

This company has developed an effective antivibration soundboard that minimizes noise for higher output than any other pickup on the market.

Whether church or county fair, street corner busker or festival headliner, there’s no need to feel boxed in when your instrument is wearing this smart pick up.

Standup bass players will love to have their favorite instrument amplified loud and clear. 

Pros

Pros:

  • Produces a nice and full sound. 
  • Made in the USA. 
  • Fits perfectly on your double bass. 
  • Does not alter overall bass sound. 
  • Very little feedback. 
  • 20mm sensor. 

Cons

Cons: 

  • A little more challenging to install than other similar pickups. 

VIEW ON AMAZON

 

Frequently Asked Questions 

 

Are piezo pickups any good?

This is the question on everyone’s mind, right?

Piezo pickups are a popular choice for acoustic guitars that are being amplified. 

The piezo pickup has two main advantages. First, it can be installed without having to drill any holes. Second, it does not require external power like an active pickup would. 

This means that there is no need for amplification of Piezos because they naturally make sound.

It also means you must be careful with volume levels on stage so that feedback does not become too intrusive!

Piezoelectricity allows these pickups to transform acoustic energy into electricity without requiring any external power source. Pretty cool right!?

These types of pickups can easily recreate natural-sounding string articulation and clarity while being bright enough where needed due their lack of magnetism. 

However, they also have some disadvantages such as being more susceptible to feedback and requiring a preamp in order to amplify the signal correctly. 

They do not require any input, as they are already converting vibrations into electrical signals and send them directly through a cable for processing at the amp or in effect pedals. 

Do piezo pickups need a preamp?

Piezo pickups are often found on acoustic guitars and mandolins. 

The Piezos convert vibrations in the instrument to an electric signal, which can be amplified through a speaker or recorded directly. 

Piezo pickups do not need a preamp because they create their own signal. 

They do require an amplifier with a high input impedance of 1M ohms or more, so that the pickup’s output is not distorted by other electronics connected to it.

The piezo pickup has a wider range of frequencies than other types and an amplifier might be necessary to make it sound as good as possible.

Will a piezo pickup work with nylon strings?

A piezo pickup or a microphone will work with nylon strings. 

Magnetic pickups need metal to get the job done, and since nylon is not ferrous they are out of luck. 

A piezo (Greek for pressure) pickup is a crystal that flips when you pinch it hard enough–sound waves send sound through crystals!

The sound of your guitar is created by a small, metal-based device that converts the vibrations in strings to an electrical signal. 

This process can be complicated and hard on guitars because they are prone to feedback when amplified. 

It creates what we call constructive interference which increases strength at certain frequencies while canceling others causing less bass response throughout various amplifiers.

The output is run through a resistor to slow down the treble and give the bass a chance to catch up. 

After running through the resistor, it must then be pre-amped because there is very little signal left in order for your amp or speaker system to hear anything once you plug this into an input jack on either of them. 

How do you install a piezo pickup?

A piezo pickup will fit on the bridge of your guitar. There is typically a reusable adhesive sticker that you can use. You may have to adjust it around a little to ensure it’s comfortable.   

A piezo pickup can be installed on any guitar that has a sound hole. 

These pickups are made of strips of aluminum. They also have magnets glued to the bottom and wired to either an input or output jack. 

When you pluck the strings, they vibrate the magnet in the pickup which creates electricity that is then amplified by your amp. 

The only difficult part about installing a piezo pickup is finding one for your specific model of guitar. 

Luckily, this article will guide you through all steps necessary!

Conclusion 

Piezo pickups have many benefits that make them worth the investment for musicians of all levels. 

Whether you’re a beginner or an expert, there are great piezo options available to suit your needs and budget. 

 Piezo pickups are a great way to amplify your instrument and can be used in different ways. 

Our guide should help you understand the difference between piezo and magnetic pickup, what makes them good for certain instruments, and which one is best for you. 

If there’s anything else we didn’t cover that you want to know about Piezo Pickups as well as how they work with other types of amplified guitars like an electric guitar or bass guitar let us know in the comments below!

At the end of the day the Piezo Pickup is a pretty neat toy to have in your arsenal.

If you do not have an acoustic with electric capabilities, or if you have a banjo, or other stringed instrument that you wish to amplify then this may be the route to go.  

We hope this article has given you some insight into what Piezo Pickups are and how they work.

Hopefully, this has helped clarify any questions you might have about selecting one for yourself. 

What do you think about Piezo Pickups?

Let us know in the comments below! 

Again thank you for reading this article and remember to always HAVE FUN!

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