You have an acoustic bass guitar, or maybe even a ukulele bass. And they sound nice, but there’s something missing when you plug it in (and let’s face it, you HAVE to plug them in). It’s the body of the instrument; that acoustic tone and nuance that just isn’t quite there with a piezo. Fortunately, the folk at IK Multimedia have you covered with the iRig Acoustic Stage, an integrated microphone that will bring the life back into your acoustic instrument.
In its simplest form, the iRig Acoustic Stage allows you to use a microphone ALONGSIDE your piezo pickup. The AUX input (where you will plug in your piezo) features a blend control to allow you to keep the onboard electronics that you may like, but add in some of the actual body of the instrument. The result is a more natural sound that isn’t nearly as harsh or “electronic” as the piezo alone. It has a “calibration” button that will allow you to optimize the DSP response to your instrument. This is especially vital when you are using a small-bodied acoustic instrument like the U-Bass. Combine that with 6 different EQ settings for the mic, and you can bring a more authentic tone to your sound.
So with all that in mind, I grabbed my trusty Islander Pako Bass, the iRig Acoustic Stage, and plugged everything into my amp. I used the “calibration” button immediately which made a big difference with the smaller body of the Pako Bass. I dialed through the EQ presets and found one that sounded nice and warm, with that woodiness and breath-like quality of the bass when it’s usually unplugged. With that part dialed in, I started blending in the piezo pickup. The big boomy low end of the piezo was a great complement to the authenticity of the iRig. With roughly a 60/40 mix (iRig/Piezo), I got a sound that was currently not available on the instrument. And it sounded GREAT!
The iRig Acoustic Stage from IK Multimedia helps to bring a new depth and authenticity to the sound of your acoustic bass guitar, or in my case, ukulele bass. Priced at $99 USD, the iRig is one of the best mics on the market for acoustic instruments.