Stagg Electric Uke Hack : Sound check… 1… 2

I was reminded today about a promise I made quite a few months ago. I said I’d post a review of how my Stagg sounds now that I’ve got my piezo fitted. Well here it is…

Planet of the Ukes

Apologies for taking so long to do this.

For those who have forgotten, I fitted a piezo and UK-2000 pre-amp to my Stagg US-10 soprano ukulele in December 2011. The fitting itself wasn’t as bad as I’d thought it might be. I made a few schoolboy errors, but on the whole things went according to plan. Right away though I was being critical of the sound I was getting out of the amp. My verdict was that I had a grounding problem and I joked about a solution involving underpants.

I haven’t done a great deal with this since. As you will all know, I’ve been far too busy building my electric ukulele.

A couple of you out there are considering starting a similar project and have asked for more info on the sound. I figured the best thing to do was to knock together a quick video. Don’t be too critical of the playing… some of these snippets are of tunes I’ve never actually played on the uke before.

For this sound check I was playing through a Line-6 amplifier and recording on my Zoom R16. I didn’t have any effects on the Line-6. Two of the snippets have no effects at all and the rest have flavours of distortion.

The verdict is that I still have a noise problem which I’m putting down to the cheap pre-amp. If I was to do this project again I would go for a more expensive pre-amp – especially if I was putting it into an expensive uke.

On the clean sounding snippets the background sound isn’t too noticeable, but once distortion is added everything multiplies up. I’m sure I could have got a better sound for a number of these if I’d spent more time, but the intention here is to give you a real demo of what it sounds like. On a couple of the heavier numbers I even had to break out my anti-static wristband!

Here’s the video… let me know what you think…

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1Per-B7vgN0]

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