Sunday, March 22, 2020


"A Veena transforms into an electric veena when a contact mike/pickup is attached to its body"- is the statement of a layman who's ignorant of different types of contact mikes/pickups and their functioning. 
THERE ARE TWO TYPES OF CONTACT MIKES/PICKUPS (1.Magnetic mike which cuts off original acoustic quality of Veena and 2. Acoustic contact mike which enhances the true acoustic quality of Veena):-
MAGNETIC MIKE:- Veena is transformed into an  ELECTRIC VEENA when this mike is attached to its body. The magnetic mike makes contact only with the strings of the Veena and suspends the acoustic properties of the wood in the instrument. Only magnetic strings are used for magnetic mike. The wood's resonance is not picked up by this mike. Therefore the advent of Electric Veena had begun only with the introduction of magnetic pickups. Saraswati Veena naadham is absent in this Veena and instead produces curious guitar/mandolin/ alien tones. To cover up for the missing true naadham an Electric Veena  artificially colours and jazzes up its dead-wood tone through advanced/modern mixer-mike systems.

ACOUSTIC CONTACT MIKE/PICKUP:-This picks up the basic resonance of wood as well as the strings enhancing the true quality of a Saraswati Veena. Original Saraswathi Veena is essentially an acoustic instrument and is not designed to function like an electric guitar. When Veena attaches a magnetic mike to function like an electric Veena (making Veena sound like a bass/electric guitar) the acoustic core of Saraswati Veena responsible for producing the "Veena Naadham" is sacrificed. For samples of true tone of Veena refer to my article on this blog- Golden Era- Glory of Original Acoustic Saraswati Veena by yesteryear legends ( the legends featured here are using acoustic mikes).

For further clarification one may check out different contact mikes used for acoustic guitars and electric/bass guitars.

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