I was so impressed by the LR Baggs Lyric Acoustic Guitar Microphone demos I heard on the LR Baggs site that I made the leap and had one installed in my Seagull Artist Studio CW. I think I made the exact right decision. I’ve never been a huge fan of under saddle pickups (or internal mics) — the sonic compromise has always been too great. Yes, you can get a good tone from under saddle pickups, but it takes work. Lots of work. I have a Fishman Spectrum that truly helps get a “better” more realistic sounding (read miked) tone, but I never found it completely satisfying. And internal mics always seem to be less than ideal too. You get some “air” in the sound, but you also get a boxy tone along for the deal.
Now the Lyric is an internal mic — LR Baggs calls it a bridge plate microphone. The Lyric behaves much like an external mic in that your guitar feels and sounds like it’s being miked by a mic sitting a foot off your guitar. You get all of the good stuff that a mic brings to the game and none of the boxiness that internal mics usually have. Basically, it sounds fantastic! Well, it sounded fantastic after I adjusted the Mic Presence Control. When LR Baggs say the Mic Presence Control is “responsive” they’re not kidding. I spent a bunch of time recording different parts into Logic and then adjusting the control. Once I got it set right, the Lyric really did a great job of representing the sound of my guitar.
Of course, feedback can be an issue for acoustic instruments and the Lyric is a mic. I haven’t had a chance to gig with the Lyric yet, but I did crank my studio monitors (Yamaha HS80Ms) and play directly facing the speakers with no feedback issues.
The Lyric has impressed me. I’m definitely going to be using it live and I’m sure it’s going to end up on one of my future albums.