Pickups and pickup systems can be as complex and individualized as the instrument itself. And, the ukulele, versus a larger, heavier instrument such as a guitar, puts even greater demands on the pickup.
We have sought out and selected pickups that have the following characteristics, in priority order:
* accurately represent the acoustics of the instrument
* simple and trouble-free
* minimal added weight
And, while we have our personal favorites, pickup selection is as personal as the selection of the wood. If you have any questions, please contact us.
Our preferred pickup is the K&K Twin Spot ($150). It does a great job of accurately representing the acoustics of the instrument. In addition, it is lightweight with no on-board electronics to worry about.
Want more options? We currently offer 4 different pickup choices. They all vary in terms of:
active/passive: passive pickups are lighter and don't have on-board electronics; active pickups have the option of on-board volume control
transducer: the 'transducer' is the part of the pickup that converts sound or movement into an electrical signal
on-board volume: some pickups offer a small volume wheel that mounts inside the soundhole
cost: from $150-$500
size/weight: active pickups are heavier, and adding volume control also adds weight
This pickup does an excellent job of representing the acoustics of the instrument. In addition, it has no on-board electronics so it is lightweight and very durable. The transducers are two discs that mount inside the body under the bridge plate.
The MiSi is an active pickup that utilizes a proprietary charging technology that obviates the need for an on-board battery. They come with a small wall-charger which provides for 8-hours of playing time with a 60-second recharge time. The transducer is an L.R. Baggs under-saddle piezo-electric pickup.
The volume & tone controls mount just inside of the soundhole. Everything else about this pickup is the same as the MiSi listed above.
This is an active pickup, using a small "coin" battery to power it. The transducer is an under-saddle piezo-electric, and the pickup comes with a volume control wheel which mounts just inside the soundwell. Because it has a battery, it is slightly heavier than the MiSi pickup.
If you're not sure if you want a pickup or not, we recommend not getting one as it can always be added later.