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Smallest but strong preamp sought for weak piezo

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  • Smallest but strong preamp sought for weak piezo

    I have a piezo pickup built into a very small thing that sends out a very weak signal to an edrum module. The piezo is covered in hard plastic. It has to be for durability but that reduces it's sensitivity. Many years ago I used to have a box from Roland that increased the signal. It had 4 inputs. I have very little space to mount the thing I'm looking for (if it exists) so I hope to find something very small. I just need to increase the signal for one pickup not four.
    This is what I've tried so far:I tried this: Saomai hifi Portable Mini Headphone Amplifiers Stereo Earphones AMP+Audio Cable+USB Cable (Black) it has: SNR: 115db,Impedance:16-150 Ohm,Distortion rate: 0.009%/32 Ohm, 130MW,Output Power: 0.13W*2/32 Ohm.
    https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1
    It didn't boost the signal enough. Too bad because I really liked the small size and lithium battery. I have a Rolls portable Mixer. Rolls MX51S Mini Mix 2 Four-Channel Stereo Line Mixer. https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1
    It's powered by 15vdc. If I put the trigger output in one channel and the mixer output into edrums and turn it up most of the way it works. It's just too big for the small area. Those other 3 unused channels just waste precious space. Any suggestions on a stronger preamp? If applicable I could also power it with the same 15v dc powering the Rolls. Thanks

  • #2
    Those preamps probably didn't work out due to an impedance mismatch. Here is a very small and simple to make preamp that can be used with high output impedance devices such as piezos and guitar pickups. I don't have a clue whether it would work for your application but it would cost pennies to try. To get more gain you bypass R2 with a 1uF - 10uF electrolytic cap (the higher the more gain) and you can use a 10k pot in series with that to regulate the output.
    The only catch is that J201 FETs aren't made any more and the market is flooded with fake ones. You have to either find a reputable seller that sells the real thing or use the smd version, which is still in production.
    MegaDrum module, DIY A2E pads, DIY hall effect 3 zone hi hat, DIY 1, 2 & 3 zone cymbals, DIY kick beater triggers on DIY modded longboard, direct drive pedals, DIY triple driver IEMs, El Cheapo buttkicker. Various VSTs running in a tweaked Linux Mint. kit pics thread

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    • #3
      Appreciate your reply. I really don't have experience or confidence is building circuit boards. I can solder my cables and little repairs but that's about it. I hope to buy something that will work. Sound,I think, is unimportant? It just needs to increase the gain of piezo vibration a lot. Thanks

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      • #4
        You might be better off trying to mount the piezo in a way that produces a hotter signal - there are several ways to do that. Maybe you could show us some pics of what your setup looks like and we can offer ideas. I've used piezos completely encased in hot glue and they still produced enough signal so it would be interesting to see why yours has such little output.

        Still, look at cheap acoustic guitar preamps - they're made for piezo pickups and can be found very cheap - as you say, sound quality is irrelevant. Something like this.
        Last edited by ignotus; 05-18-18, 04:22 AM.
        MegaDrum module, DIY A2E pads, DIY hall effect 3 zone hi hat, DIY 1, 2 & 3 zone cymbals, DIY kick beater triggers on DIY modded longboard, direct drive pedals, DIY triple driver IEMs, El Cheapo buttkicker. Various VSTs running in a tweaked Linux Mint. kit pics thread

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by ignotus View Post
          You might be better off trying to mount the piezo in a way that produces a hotter signal - there are several ways to do that. Maybe you could show us some pics of what your setup looks like and we can offer ideas. I've used piezos completely encased in hot glue and they still produced enough signal so it would be interesting to see why yours has such little output.

          Still, look at cheap acoustic guitar preamps - they're made for piezo pickups and can be found very cheap - as you say, sound quality is irrelevant. Something like this.
          Thanks for the suggestion. Mine is covered in plastic but not hit with a stick. Hit with a fingernail. So a much milder hit. I tried Schatten Mini Pre Belt-clip Guitar/Instrument Preamp with Volume but sent it back because it didn't boost the signal as much as the mixer I mentioned earlier. I had a good look again today for simple preamps for guitars. It seemed like every one I thought might be worth trying only shipped from China. (I'd like to have it sooner if possible). Like this one...https://www.amazon.de/Gazechimp-Tona...B2SSXGRSTY0G4G
          Unfortunately none of them actually described how much they increased the output. I liked the look of this because it was small and only had a volume control. I sure don't need eq and tuners. So any info on the strongest , compact preamp will be much appreciated.

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          • #6
            Many years ago I had a box the size of a mini mixer from Roland to boost the signal of 4 triggers.It's long gone. I can't even find it on Google today. It would be too big for the little space I have today but I'd like to know exactly what it was doing if someone here knows. Thanks

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