P22 Acoustic Tone


New Member
Nov 5, 2012
Cape Town / South Africa
Hi all.

I have a query on how to get the best acoustic tone from the P22. One of the principal reasons I got the P22 was for 'silent' recording when my kids are alseep. My issue is that when I plug my P22 into my PC to record (through a Focusrite Soundcard) it doesn't sound as good as my Martin, however when I play the piezo through my electric amp it sounds huge!

So my issue to sum it up is this. plugging the piezo direct into the desk or my Soundcard (that has a preamp) it sounds flat, and quacky. what do you advise I would like a solution that could work live and in the studio if possible, would a D/I box, or a pre-amp do the trick?

Hope my question makes sense....
I have to say first up that I don't have a P22 (do however want one very badly!). I have however had a few other quality piezo equipped electrics, Godins, Parkers etc, and still have a Parker Nitefly. I suspect that the output from the guitar might need some extra buffering and shaping before going into a desk or PA, it is normally a fairly 'raw' signal and relies on the EQ of the amp etc to get sweet. If your Martin is an electro the onboard EQ will have taken care of this. I personally would try a DI unit/pedal with a few sound shaping options. I have a cheap Behringer that does fine but have seen and heard that the Fishman Aura pedals are excellent, but pricey. My 2c.
I found over the years that I needed a high quality direct box with onboard EQ of some kind to be able to tolerate the sound of a piezo.

The best one I've found for this purpose is the Avalon U5. It's a Class A circuit with a very high quality basic sound. It has an EQ that has settings tailored for the output of a piezo pickup, a bass, a standard electric guitar, etc. It works extremely well with modeling software, if that's your thing, as well. It has a headphone output, and lots of other features. It's worth taking a look at.

As a bass direct box, it's among the best I've found, and on a sonic level with things like the A-Designs Reddi, Demeter Tube Direct, etc., while having more versatility.
I've got a LR Baggs Para DI and love it. I do have to pull the gain WAY down on the Para. Good luck.
I was down to the Baggs or the Aura. Both quality units. ;)

I have the baggs unit. I don`t need it to run to PA but with it even through PA it really makes the piezo come alive. much more acoustic crispness so I would think it would do the same for recording. not matter what you do though it will not sound like the Martin.
I use a Fractal Audio Systems Axe FX-II with the P22 tone matched to my Taylor. Even without the tone matching, it sounds pretty good. Eventhough the Axe FX acts as a preamp, I have it going line out through a Radial JRDI Duplex to a RME 4 Channel Preamp into an RME Hammerfall. So, I am using both a high quality DI box and a decent mic preamp. I think what matters is a good preamp and making sure your input impedance and levels are right for the soundcard.


(I think I could probably done a better job miking my acoustic, but I was in a hurry.)
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I second the Fishman Aura. Use that with the imaging at 100% and you'll be amazed.