I've seen a lot of resonator guitars built with magnetic pickups.  Do the magnetic pickups capture some of the unique sound that you get when playing a resonator acoustically?  Do you have to have a piezo type pickup?  Are there specific types of pickups that work best for resonator guitars? 

 

I guess another way to put my main question is this:  An electric guitar, with a magnetic pickup, doesn't need sound chamber, for this reason they are usually made out of solid wood.  When you build a guitar with a sound chamber and go through the trouble of putting in a resonator cone, does this alter the sound that is produced by the pickup?  Am I making any sense?

 

Tim

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Hi Tim

Yes mate to a certain degree you do get some reso sound from a Magnetic Pickup but the best method of amplifiying a reso is using a mic but this also has problems - because of the sound chamber and air pressure within the chamber this can cause a mic to feedback - there are mic systems available for resonators and Acoustic guitars but the ones that work best are very expensive Highlander Pickups

i have also experimented with Piezo discs in the resonator but with no great outcome - the best results i had was to sandwich a piezo disc in the Biscuit bridge but really you only get the sound of the strings not the Reso tone

below is a recording i made on the Mayorga Resonator i made you can hear a little of the reso tone this was using a Magnetic pickup - tunes Early Morning Blues  and Reso Blues


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I can't stand piezo pickups, so I admit my bias up front. That said, I've had good luck with magnetic pickups with resonators overall. I'll stick a mic in front if I really need to, but I'm usually moving around too much on stage to make that worthwhile.

 

Here's a cut off my EP with a magnetic pickup on a cheap Rogue resonator. It's played through a dirty Honeytone amp, but you get the idea.

 

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