unusual yamaha APX6 pickups , HELP

APX series guitars are designed with a focus on playability. Their thin bodies and cutaways that provide greater access to the upper frets, offer smoother switching between electric and acoustic instruments.

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jimfish42
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unusual yamaha APX6 pickups , HELP

Unread post by jimfish42 » Mon Mar 26, 2018 1:44 am

Hi there all .
Im so glad i found thius site , I own a yamaha APX 6 , now the pick ups are different to any ive seen , They are not aftermarket , I have been to images and have still NEVER came across these , i bought this second hand some 15 years ago ,
There are bassicly 4 knobs , 3 on the top edge and one round near the neck , they all push in so they are flat and out the way , there is volume bass treble on top , and the knob near the neck seems to ballance the pickup which i think is twin one on treble side and one on bass side ,,, I have never seen these on an APX what type are they does anyone know PLEASE are they as good as the normal APX pickups ? should i use an aftermarket fishman ? also you have to take the strings of to get to the battery ,,
Any heads up on this would be so appreciated ,,, kind regards ,, jim
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Re: unusual yamaha APX6 pickups , HELP

Unread post by Saul » Mon Mar 26, 2018 2:33 am

Hi Jim. Welcome to the forum.

The APX 6, if it's the one I am thinking of, does indeed have the controls you mentioned which sit flat when pressed in.
Yamaha_APX6.png
Yamaha_APX6_Controls.png
Here's the service manual in case you may need it:
APX6 n-SYSTEM20_20L_21_SM.pdf
(334.39 KiB) Downloaded 20 times
I tend not to use on-board preamps/pickups built into most acoustic guitars and instead use the IK Multimedia iRig Acoustic Stage which simply clips onto the sound hole in a matter of seconds and sounds much better than the original pickup. Definitely worth checking out I think.
http://www.ikmultimedia.com/products/irigacousticstage/
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Re: unusual yamaha APX6 pickups , HELP

Unread post by Buzzard » Mon Mar 26, 2018 1:15 pm

Hi Jim, welcome to the forum and the string section. :D

Your APX-6 is the discreet model having push in buttons instead of the larger and gaudy preamps on newer models.

I'm sure your pickups sound alright, but sound is a matter of personal taste.
If you're not happy with the sound consider getting another model.
Modding this guitar with another preamp and pickup is costly, and only worth it if REALLY want to do it.

Even if the battery is only reachable through the soundhole, you only have to loosen the strings,
then use a piece of thin rope or yarn tied under the guitar to pull the strings away to give full access.

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Peter
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Re: unusual yamaha APX6 pickups , HELP

Unread post by Saul » Mon Mar 26, 2018 3:11 pm

Was a completely daft idea to stick the battery inside the guitar. What on earth were Yamaha thinking?

Anyway, like I said, stick an iRig Acoustic pickup on there. Only takes a few seconds to clip on and it's miles better than any piezo pickup.
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Re: unusual yamaha APX6 pickups , HELP

Unread post by FICB » Thu Jun 07, 2018 2:16 pm

I have an APX-6 purchased in 1991 and unused for the last 20 years (recently discovered in clearing the loft!). It is a beautiful guitar but the preamp is dead and I am disinclined to bother repairing and replacing all the old capacitors. I intend to bypass the internal preamp by wiring the pickups directly to the end pin jack and using an external preamp. Do you foresee any problems with this?
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Re: unusual yamaha APX6 pickups , HELP

Unread post by Saul » Thu Jun 07, 2018 2:47 pm

Hi FICB, welcome to the forums and the string section :)

I would say that technically you could do that but Yamaha match their pickups with the preamp so not entirely sure if the results would be what your wanting them to be.

Have you checked the battery contacts for corrosion?

Were I in this situation I would either use the iRig Acoustic pickup as mentioned previously or, if not wanting an external pickup I might replace the Yamaha preamp with a third party one like the Artic Edge series and one of their under saddle piezo pickups or if wanting something more high end go for Fishman or Shadow.

Certainly no harm in trying your idea though. The preamp doesn't work anyway so nothing to lose right?
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Re: unusual yamaha APX6 pickups , HELP

Unread post by Buzzard » Thu Jun 07, 2018 4:19 pm

FICB wrote:
Thu Jun 07, 2018 2:16 pm
I intend to bypass the internal preamp by wiring the pickups directly to the end pin jack and using an external preamp. Do you foresee any problems with this?
Welcome to the forum and the string section. :D

The only problem you may get is low output from the piezo pickup.
Using I-rig recommended by Saul will give the boost needed.

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Peter
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Re: unusual yamaha APX6 pickups , HELP

Unread post by FICB » Thu Jun 07, 2018 10:25 pm

Noted. Many thanks for your input.
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Re: unusual yamaha APX6 pickups , HELP

Unread post by FICB » Tue Jun 12, 2018 11:31 am

Saul wrote:
Thu Jun 07, 2018 2:47 pm
Hi FICB, welcome to the forums and the string section :)

I would say that technically you could do that but Yamaha match their pickups with the preamp so not entirely sure if the results would be what your wanting them to be.

Have you checked the battery contacts for corrosion?

Were I in this situation I would either use the iRig Acoustic pickup as mentioned previously or, if not wanting an external pickup I might replace the Yamaha preamp with a third party one like the Artic Edge series and one of their under saddle piezo pickups or if wanting something more high end go for Fishman or Shadow.

Certainly no harm in trying your idea though. The preamp doesn't work anyway so nothing to lose right?
Thanks for your response. The preamp had several capacitors missing and I decided not to attempt a repair hence my decision to bypass the preamp. I have now connected the piezo pickup to the end pin jack and, for now, I am using a Boss AD-2 preamp pedal with superb results. I just wanted you to know that it works with no loss of signal from the pickup. I now have a great guitar once again.
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Re: unusual yamaha APX6 pickups , HELP

Unread post by Saul » Tue Jun 12, 2018 1:43 pm

Thanks for the update FICB. That sort of info is very useful for anyone else in a similar situation :)
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Re: unusual yamaha APX6 pickups , HELP

Unread post by Buzzard » Tue Jun 12, 2018 9:59 pm

I'm glad to hear that it plays well without the built in preamp.

Here's a quick demo of the Boss AD-2 and a Dovina acoustic guitar.



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Peter
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