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help! my Lyric sounds pretty bad

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  • help! my Lyric sounds pretty bad


    I just got a Lyric and a Venue DI.

    Actually i can't get a decent sound from my Lyric.

    I had it installed by a pro luthier on a Larrivee P09, a parlor guitar, pretty small beatiful instrument.
    I'm even thinking that the combination Parlor Guitar / Lyric is no good. Is that possible?

    The mic sounds quite the opposite as what it says it should. Very weak bass, cavernous and harsh mids and too brite highs.
    There's also something about the compression the mic has that doesn't feel good. Feedback is hard to manage. But primarly the sound is my main concern.

    I tried it direct to my mixing console and trough the Venue. Same results.

    Even tweeking hard with the Venue EQ didn't get it better.
    To compare i plugged an Epiphone EL-00 with a Fishman Rare Earth Blend that sounded just great right away through the Venue with almost flat EQ.

    I've seen many reviews and tests. Some of them sounding pretty good, and some sounding pretty bad.
    So far i'm on the bad side unfortunately.

    I do believe in Baggs's hi quality reputation. I also have a Five.0 on my tenor Ukulele since two years ago, wich i really love.

    I hope the Lyric will end sounding good. I live in Argentina and there's no chance to send it back to Guitar Center.

    Is there any chance that the mic is defective?
    Changing the position of the mic inside the guitar could change the sound drastically for better?

    I'd really appreciate to get your comments about this and get some... help!


    Last edited by mono morello; 05-21-2014, 09:23 AM.

  • #2
    Hi Mono,

    Thanks for asking about this.

    From what you've said so far, it sounds like a few factors are combining to produce a disappointing result. The small body of the parlor guitar surely doesn't produce the same bass that a larger body would which can add to a thinner plugged-in sound.

    The Lyric's low frequency compression is meant to keep the bass under control but not conceal it. However, a few players have found the compressed bass to be lacking relative to the fixed mid-range and adjustable treble, especially when compared to pickups(sources that are not microphones).

    Do you have room to move the microphone fixture around? If so, I'm happy to send additional adhesives for testing different placement options.

    Lastly, based on that last factor, it can be useful and informative if you can install that Lyric into another guitar for an A/B comparison of that part of the equation.

    If you ultimately feel there may be a defect in the Lyric mic or preamp circuit, we are more than willing to receive it from you for testing and repair or replacement if needed.

    Please let me know what you find or if I can send any materials that can help dial the sound or reveal a defect.
    Last edited by Bryan McManus; 05-28-2014, 07:51 AM. Reason: Approach


    • #3
      Hi Bryan,

      Thanks for your fast reply!
      I mostly agree with the points you made.
      The comparision is not fare, the Fishman rare earth Blend do have a soundhole pickup and a condenser mic inside wich is located under the soundhole. In combination with the pickup (70% condenser 30 % pickup) it produces a very natural and pleasant sound. The best of what i heard so far on amplified acoustic guitars.

      After some more testing and trying things out, i would say:

      Even though i tried hardly to listen to the good stuff the Lyric is trying to deliver (and sometimes i feel it might be ok) ...

      1- The lyric doesn't work well with Parlors (even though my Larrivee is a very nice, good sounding and expensive parlor guitar)
      It might sound better on a dread.

      2- This is my main point. I don't like the native Compression and EQ on the preamp. I guess it might sound good on a Dread, not sure on a 000 or OM.
      There's a problem on the 250 hz / 1.5 khz frecuency zone.
      I would had leave some bass response and cut some on that low mid / mid zone. It's just unpleasant to listen to. Cavernous sound.

      3 - Would be great to try to locate the Lyric mic on different spots of the parlor soundtop. Do you think this could make noticeable changes on the sound?
      Would you recomend trying to put it somewhere near the sounhole?

      As live in Argentina and the lyric isn't available around here, would you send to me by mail some adhesives for testing positions and guitars? how can i give you my adress info? is there a private message zone here?

      4- Anyway, after playing around i'm finally thinking ''well, this might be it and it's not that bad''...
      But...I'm gonna try the Rare Earth Blend on my Larrivee Parlor an will put the Lyric on my Tacoma dread and see if it sounds better. i guess the inherent eq balance of the dread would fit better to the lyric fixed eq & compression preamp.

      Finally i don't think the mic may have a defect in the circuit. I hope it doesn't but how to know that.
      What i read on other forums is that being the Lyric in it's first stages of developement/evolution, for sure the Lyric's next generation will have some improvements. I can assure it's gonna have a tweek on the compress/eq department.

      Bryan, thank you so much for your time and your goodwill. Please let me know how can i get those adhesives or if i can use any other adhesives wich i can bought here in Argentina. What would be the specs for that adhesive?

      Thank you!


      • #4
        Bryan, what would be the lowest frecuency that the Lyric can express? i mean the frecuency range.


        • #5
          Hi Mono,

          Thanks for your reply. I believe you're taking a good approach to this.

          Please send your address information to [email protected]

          I'll send the adhesives needed to install the Lyric into another guitar. Once you do, please comment on the result.


          • #6
            Hi Mono,

            I've edited my original reply to remove statements that were open to misinterpretation. I'd like to focus on a factor that can have a huge impact on the tone of the Lyric system.

            It came to my attention that I didn't refer to the presence trim control. That control should have been my go-to first answer regarding the brightness and mid-range in your Lyric signal. In a majority of installs, the presence control setting is the difference between a balanced tone and excessive(or diminished) treble and mid-range relative to the fixed bass response. Bo, our General Manager who has done more pickup and/or mic installs than anyone I know has seen cases in which properly adjusting the presence control tames both the treble and the upper mid-range and, by contrast, allow the bass response to be warmer and more apparent.

            If it has not been done as of yet, I highly recommend you spend some time carefully adjusting that control.

            Placement of the mic fixture can have some detectable influence over the tone but the presence control has a far greater impact.


            • #7
              Hi Bryan,

              I experimented with the presence trim control. It certainly changes the caracter of the sound in the high and mid high frecuencies. But you never get the low end that i assume it was cut on the fixed eq on the preamp. And mids are always harsh.
              Could my unit be defective?
              I tried also through the Venue all possible eq settings. Venue to the computer, Venue to the acoustic guitar amp...

              Well, i did record a sound test so you can listen to what i'm listening.
              I recorded through an AKG Perception 200 to have reference of the real thing. Then the Lyric (presence trim almost in the middle) and i also mounted the Fishman Rare Earth Blend.
              So there are three different sound sources. The recording was direct to my computer, no eq, no preamps, no effects.

              Here's the link to the test:


              • #8
                Hi Mono,

                Thanks for the follow-up and for linking that A/B/C comparison. I'll admit the Lyric in your comparison video sounds much as you described. I'd like to explore some possible remedies.

                More than analyzing the comparison, I'd like to zero in on things that can get the sound you're looking for from your Lyric and I'm confident we can help you achieve a satisfying result.

                Presence trim - Now that you've adjusted your Lyric's presence control, let's move on to other factors.

                Placement - Location of the mic can be critical, particularly on a small body guitar like a parlor model. I don't recall if we discussed the specific location(s) you've tried in your guitar. The default or recommended location may not work well in this case and, if so, locating the "sweet spot" would be most important as the Lyric's mic is very directional and sensitive.

                You mentioned in your post that you've tried all possible EQ settings but we never got to specifics. Therefor I'd like to make an EQ setting recommendation to you based on what we heard from the Lyric in your recording.

                Use the two mid-range adjusters with the frequency selectors in the following way:

                Adjust the high-mid frequency selector full counter-clockwise which is 500Hz and use the cut/boost control above it to cut it all the way. If you find that cuts too much from that frequency, cut a little less.

                Then adjust the low-mid frequency selector full counter-clockwise which is 100Hz and boost a little using the cut/boost control above it. That should make the bass more apparent.

                Based on what we heard in your recording, it actually doesn't sound like there is an issue with the Lyric's microphone or preamp but rather a group of factors contributing to the current result. If you are unable to get an amplified sound much closer to that of the unplugged guitar by the methods we've suggested so far, we are more than willing to receive it from you for testing.
                Last edited by Bryan McManus; 05-30-2014, 04:16 PM. Reason: spellin'


                • #9
                  Hi Bryan,

                  Thanks for your EQ tips. Unfortunately i won't be able to try them cause i already took off the Lyric from the Larrivee and put the Fishman rare earth blend on it.
                  Much better sound right out of the box with very very little eq needed. I got really frustrated with the Lyric. I wish it had some more openness...

                  By the way, i did install the Lyric on to a bigger body Epiphone and now the Lyric sounds more natural. Because of the bigger body, it's easier to pull more bass response. Though it still lacks real bass. To me, if you have to drastically eq a sound signal, there's a problem before the eq. You can do something about it but the result may not end up sounding good or natural. In my opinion.
                  If i were responsible for this product design i for sure would try to let it be a little more open on low end, not that mid driven and release some of the compression wich i found excessive.

                  Now. I bought this unit and brought it down to Argentina, Southamerica. Where i live right now.
                  If i were in the US, that unit would have been sent back for exchange maybe for an Anthem system. But in my case i can't send the Lyric back. I mean, i don't want to put any more money on that product.

                  Would be nice to have from Baggs some solution here. I knew i was running the risk of buying a new and not yet proved or better said approved product.
                  Let me know if you see any possible solution to my bad experience. I own the Five.0 and the Venue DI and love both of them. So i was a big Baggs fan ...
                  I did send my adress and contact info by mail as you suggeted me to [email protected]. Didn't get any response yet. That was to get some extra adhesives which is not necessary anymore. I ended up using some commercial double tape wich works better than the original. The volumen fell apart after two days of being installed.
                  I hope my review helps in any way to the Lyric to improve on your next editions

                  As i said before, on the Epiphone sounded better, you can hear some natural and realistic sound but there's always that tiny, lack of bass quality to the sound.
                  To me, the Lyric still need some development. It sure has the potencial to be one of the best amplifying systems in the market...

                  Hope to get through this frustration and still remain a Baggs fan.


                  • #10
                    Hi Mono,

                    I'm sorry we weren't able to resolve your dissatisfaction with the tone of the Lyric. It sounds as though it's not the system for you to use since you're looking for more bass response.

                    I'd like to stress that we're quite interested in testing that Lyric unit to ensure it's within specifications. If it is or is not, we can work out options by private message or direct email.


                    • #11
                      Hi Bryan,

                      Thanks for your interest and support. Sent you a private message


                      • #12
                        Thank you for the PM.


                        • #13
                          I strongly suggest you L.R.Baggs to check the Lyric Pre EQ preset for your next editions. You could improve seriously there to get a really good balanced and natural sounding system.
                          Roll off the 1 K frecuency (at least -12 db). Add some bass on 100/150 HZ. You'd be so muh better then.

                          Question: Can i (or a luthier) modify the Lyric Pre EQ preset?????????? How??????


                          • #14
                            Hi Mono,

                            I'm unable to say how to alter or modify the preamp circuit in order to change the response. We designed the system to respond accurately to a wide variety of guitars and, due to factors specific to each guitar, cannot be guaranteed to reproduce each guitar precisely. That's why it would be necessary to make those EQ adjustment with your amplifier/PA channel or if you have an interfacing preamp/EQ device.


                            • #15
                              My Lyric is lacking bass response as well on Taylor

                              I replaced the expression system in my Taylor 714 with a Lyric and was very dissapointed. It sound about identical to the A/B/C analysis mono provided. I have an iMix in one of my other Taylors and it sounds very good! I just thought I'd try the Lyric since it had some good reviews. I've since pulled the Lyric and gone back to the Taylor ES for now. I love the low end from Taylor's ES but, the mids sound like a kazoo!

                              With that being said, I'm trying to decide if I purchase another iMix or an Anthem. I'm looking for a very solid response on the low end and feel the element may be a factor. Which pick would you recommend for good low end when comparing the iMix and Anthem? I've decided to cut my losses on the Lyric and it's sitting like new back in the box until I find a home for it.

                              I was also a little confused about your statment concerning the two presence controls? My Lyric only has one presence control on the volume knob. Can you please clarify?

                              Any information you may be able to provide would be very helpful!

                              Thank you!