Post by fragglerock on Oct 14, 2010 18:33:49 GMT -5
I just bought this guitar used and cheap and it sounds great unplugged, but when I plug it in, I cant hear the bottom three strings well through the amp, I can hear them, but barely. any ideas? The rest of the strings are bright and wonderful.
Secondly, can you give us a little detail on this guitar? For instance, what model Ovation do you have? Can you identify the type of pickup? By that I mean is it factory stock or an aftermarket? Have you ever had any problems with the amp before?
There are some very bright folks around here. The more information you can throw out to them the better answers and assistance you can expect back.
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Post by fragglerock on Oct 14, 2010 21:24:03 GMT -5
Thanks for the warm reception, it's an ovation celebrity, model cc057, I just bought it a week ago off of craigslist, I'm pretty sure that it is the original pickup, the part where the strings anchor at the bottom of the guitar looks like it's been filed to lower the strings, the bone colored bridge thing looks square then rounded off. Hope some of this helps, I can get deeper if someone explains how to take this thing apart without damaging the guitar, I'm pretty nifty with building computers and cars so I should be ok going in depth with some guidance, thanks again for any help given.
This is just a wild guess but since you bought this off craigslist, I'm guessing you have not changed the strings. It's possible that the lowest 3 strings might not be the right ones for an electric guitar and could be brass strings. One way to test this would be to hold a magnet to these strings and compare the "feel" to the strings that are working.
Spent a couple of years playing someone else's Ovation Balladeer some years back...I reckon if someone has 'played' with filing the bridge, there's a good chance they may have damaged/dislodged something in the piezo area, as G-P has suggested.
I have a vague (sigh!) memory that things were inclined to be a bit frail in that area if one became a little ham-fisted......sadly, this could well be the reason for the cheap price.....
Good luck from Down Here.
More than six guitars?
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I was trying to find out more about how such piezo pickups are made, and I didnt find what I was looking for. But I wouldnt be surprised if there are two piezo elements, one at each end of the bridge, and if some wiring to one was damaged, it might explain your issue.
Post by gitpiddler on Oct 15, 2010 22:27:06 GMT -5
There are six. I noticed they spaced the OP-24 saddle sections to where the high strings are center of the section, over the crystal, while the heavier ones are off center, I presume to eq volume.
It all sits in an aluminum channel with the cable, at the treble end, passing thru the top to the preamp.Two black endpegs also pass thru. Push the pegs from inside the box and the pickup slides up and out. There are phenolic shims under the channel to adjust height. The cable is small and delicate.
Last Edit: Oct 15, 2010 22:33:03 GMT -5 by gitpiddler
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Wondering if you got a solution. I got a second users celebrity CS175 - first thing I did was change the strings. WHile I did that the bridge fell off. It was easy enough to out it back but I have the same problem as you - top 3 strings are picked up fine. Lower 3 are silent.... any ideas?
Post by roadtonever on Apr 22, 2011 12:40:36 GMT -5
A common issue that develops over time as a result of typical humidity changes casuses the saddle and/or slot to warp slighly. The distrubtion of pressure required for the piezo element to function is messed up ultimately resulting in loss of volume from some but not all strings. Maybe try a Graphtech saddle that looks like this:
It does sound like you may have a similar issue to fragglerock, the OP on this thread. He has not been around here since his posts last October, so we dont know if the issue was fully diagnosed or fixed. But I'm sure we are all happy to help with yours if we can.
I think that I may have solved the problem. The guitar is a second user guitar and I've noticed that the saddle has had some work done on it - probably to get better action (which isn't brilliant). I don't know whether the last owner has fiddled with it or it's just an Ovation thing but where the pickup connects is a small lump of solder - only small but enough to lift the saddle away from the pick up at the bass strings. A bit of careful work with a file put a small notch on the underside of the saddle to make way for the soldered connection. It now works. In fairness the guitar only cost me about £40 (that's about $65 US) so not a great loss if it went wrong and I needed to buy a new saddle. The action's still not good by the 12th fret, though. Another job later!!
Just wanted to mention that while I don't think I've ever used brass strings for anything, I have had bronze strings on an electric before and they worked fine. Heck, they sell magnetic soundhole pickups and I've never seen one that recommends switching to "steel" strings. I do that anyway, but...
The thing is that it's really the steel core which gets sensed by the mag pickup. The windings - nickel, bronze, brass, or whatever - just add mass in order to help set the frequency of oscillation.