Pickup Test Drive: What is the best acoustic guitar pickup?

Fishman Infinity, K&K Pure Mini & Baggs M80 installed in acoustic guitar

Which acoustic pickup up is best? Our latest Pickup Test Drive is a doozy from the genius mind of Mass St Music luthier Matt Harmon – 3 pickups in one guitar for you to ‘Test Drive’.

Fishman Infinity, K&K Pure Mini, LR Baggs M-80 & M-1 Pickups!

We’re calling this month’s Pickup Test Drive ‘Acoustic³’ – Luthier Matt Harmon has made it much easier to hear which pickup is right for you with our latest Test Drive – our opportunity for you to test out different pups and see what’s best for you and your playing style. He (very carefully) installed 3 pickups in a beautiful Eastman E6 OM. This now has a Fishman Infinity, a K&K Pure Mini and an LR Baggs pickup (the new M-80, though we can swap it out with the M-1 in just a minute so you can try both!) It’s pretty freaking amazing. Our Repair Shop does a lot of pickup installations, both on acoustics and electrics – and folks are always asking us what the best acoustic pickup is. The truth is, it really depends. Here’s our take on some of our favorites – just the facts Jack:

Fishman Infinity Pickup
This is an under saddle transducer piezo pickup with a built-in preamp, volume control, tone control and a voicing switch.  It requires a 9V battery and is really great for the stage. We often recommend this pickup if you are playing in a band with multiple instruments. It has more headroom and is able to cut through well and be heard in a large band setting.

K&K Pure Mini Pickup
This three transducer passive pickup system has a great warm sound, with minimal modification needed to your guitar. This pickups delivers the truest representation of your specific guitar. We often roll down the mids on the amp when using this pickup. If you’re looking for headroom, you might prefer the Fishman Infinity or the Baggs M80. Add the Vintage Jack to this pickup for a no-modification install and the Volume Kit adds a volume thumb wheel control in the soundhole – just ask our Repair Shop about these.

LR Baggs M80 Pickup
The newest and coolest sound hole pickup on the market! Not only can you switch it from active to passive, this M-80 has a built-in preamp and a secondary coil that picks up the top vibrations and mixes the signal with the magnetic pole pieces, giving you a broader tonal spectrum yet fully natural sound.

LR Baggs M1 Pickup
A classic and still one of our go-to sound hole pickups. This is a hum-canceling pickup with over 1000 hours of play time on one battery and it sounds great. This has a high feedback tolerance and a built-in volume control.


Eastman E6 OM with pickups installed

For this Test Drive we chose the very cool Eastman E6 OM acoustic guitar!

If you’re in the Lawrence, Kansas area, stop by and try this one out while it’s up in November as our Pickup Test Drive. If you’re out of town, check out this video:


If you come to the store to check it the Acoustic Test Drive guitar , we recommend plugging it in with our Fishman SA220 Solo Amp tower, or one of the Genz Benz acoustic amps.  It’s an acoustic pickup trifecta! As always, if you have any questions at all, feel free to give us a call at 785/843-3535, or shoot us an email at info@massstreetmusic.com

Our past Pickup Test Drives:

Seymour Duncan 59 Humbucker Pickups

Fralin P90 Pickups



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