September 24, 2013 at 10:33 pm #113049
Someone said they had used one and liked it. I’m wondering if they used a pickup or just a mic next to the harp.September 25, 2013 at 1:10 am #113050ellen-beckermanParticipant
Hi Sylvia, I tried using a Roland cube with both my Sandpiper and Dusty Strings celtic harps, and was not thrilled. I felt that the harps simply had too much resonance for the small amp, and that it distorted quite a bit. I used a pick-up. I still have the cube, and would love to hear from people who have used it successfully with harps. It is so lightweight and portable, which is really nice. My cube is the really small one.September 25, 2013 at 10:56 am #113051
Did you try just putting a mic next to the harp?
i have pedal harps, so I don’t want a pickup. I am looking at PA systems…tried an Alto Pro and didn’t like it. I use two older guitar amps, but nowadays guitar amps are designed for plug-in type instruments and don’t pick up acoustic.September 25, 2013 at 3:10 pm #113052ellen-beckermanParticipant
No, I didn’t trying simply putting a mic next to the harp… I should try that. I have just acquired my first pedal harp after more than 20 years on lever, and I am excited and thrilled, and have begun wondering about amplification. I have a guitar amp that I like better for my Celtic harps. I believe mine does have a plug in for a mic… much to explore. I believe I’ve read that some harpists do put pickups in their pedal harps. It sounds like you do not. What influences your decision? I’d love your thoughts on the matter…. :o)September 25, 2013 at 6:10 pm #113053MayaParticipant
I’ve used a Roland Cube and while it’s fantastic for the guitar, I have to agree that the standard Cube it isn’t appropriate for the harp and seriously muddies the sound. Particularly as you’re using a pedal harp, I’d avoid guitar amps as they tend to be far too midrange. Although I haven’t used it on the harp, I have put synths and a double bass through both the 100 and 30watt Roland Bass Cubes and they pack a pretty good punch and will handle the dynamic range and resonance of the harp far better.
I’m also curious as to why you chose to use a mic over a pickup? Particularly as you intend to go through an amp rather than a PA, getting a pickup would be the more logical choice. You’re likely to get a lot of feedback and excess noise with a mic. I play a pedal harp & find that using a pick up made my life ever so much easier, not having to deal with mic positioning, stands etc.September 25, 2013 at 8:36 pm #113054
I tried a Fishman pickup when I first started going out years ago…it picked up the sound of the pedals unless I put it pretty high up, and then the cord came thru as a swooshing sound every time I moved. Unless someone develops a cordless one that i can put high on the harp, I will stick to mics.
I use both a corded and cordless mics…depending on how far away I can place the amps…I usually use both amps. They are guitar amps. One is a Marathon 30W I got from Sylvia Woods about 30 yrs ago…been repaired twice, which is why I’d like to find one as a replacement, just in case. The other is a little Radio Shack 20W I got when my Marathon went out. It was all they had that day, and I grabbed it…glad I did. Sadly, Radio Shack no longer makes amps, I understand…… the amount of sound is quite a lot…either amp can get louder with the cordless mics because you can turn up the receiver and turn up the mic itself…but again, it depends on the room and how much feedback there is.
I put my mics on the floor with padding under them. Music store guys try to tell me they won’t work on the floor, and I tell them I’ve been putting them (and the ones the give me in churches) on the floor for 30 years, and they DO work.
The reason I’m looking at PAs is because the newer amps all respond to plugged in guitars, but not to acoustic sounds….I’ve tried a lot of them with the same result.September 25, 2013 at 10:44 pm #113055Paul and BrendaParticipant
We use the 30 amp Cube with our Grand Harpsicles which come with built in pickups. Works great for us. It’s a stereo amp so we plug both harps into it. We play all our music together on the two harps. We haven’t needed to turn them up real high, so if we did maybe it would distort?September 29, 2013 at 6:13 pm #113056
After much research, I found out that a really good repairman at one of the music stores is able to rebuild the used amps that come in. My next step is to see if he can do my Marathon. I really need exactly what they used to make…an acoustic guitar amp….which is what my Marathon is, and apparently my little Radio Shack is. That means…like the old days when the guitarist sat or stood in front of a mic and played (no pickup, no wire to an amp…only the mic connected to the amp.)
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