Best for percussive playing?
I'm playing a J45 with a Baggs element installed. I make percussion loops so I added a Miniflex mic system to hear the thumping and popping on the guitar. I'm quite interested in the Anthem system as an 'all in one' solution.
I've asked a few users and one suggested the M80 being better for percussion. I appreciate that advice, but fear not having an internal mic. Any users that have experience care to comment? How well does the M80 pick up percussive (on the body) tapping and banging? And/or would you just go with the Anthem?
The Anthem is an excellent system, but the Element under-saddle pickup still carries the low-frequencies. So the low end will still be a bit "thumpy" if you are hitting the bridge. The M80 carries the full frequency range, so the overall body response is more even from high to low.
The Anthem mic is extremely natural sounding in the mids and highs though. The Anthem also allows for control from the pickup to the mic. The M80 is fixed, unless you adjust the poles.
So it's hard to say. In my personal opinion, the M80 sounds better for percussive playing. But that's just me.
Thanks for the input.
To be specific, I don't hit the bridge, but the bouts of the guitar. Sometimes with fingers ala a hand drum (da-da-dak) but most times with knuckles for a snare sound (pak!). I realize that bridge PUs are bassy. The element in my J45 is really bassy if I hit the bridge. Does that change your opinion at all?
I'm also worried about having a sound hole PU, as I could not then install a feedback-buster. Any experience with that?
In my experience, a feedback buster doesn't make a sound-hole pickup any more resistant to feedback. It can help in some cases with other systems, but sound-hole pickups don't really require it. They are highly feedback resistant on their own.
If you don't really need the low end for percussive purposes, then I suppose the Anthem would work for you. I use the Anthem and I love the way it sounds, but I don't play percussive guitar. The M80 still has a bit more "attack" to the body sound though, almost unnaturally so.
I would say that the Anthem should be the most accurate, and the M80 should be a little more exaggerated.
I've heard nothing but great things about the Anthem. So I'm going to give it a try based on your description. The term 'exaggerated' isn't what I'm looking for. A natural sound and the ability to hear the percussion. I'll let you know how things turn out.
And - I haven't used a soundhole PU before. Thanks for the thoughts on feedback.
Check out this video. It's a good demo of the percussive sounds you get from the M80.