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Rating and Reviews: LR Baggs Venue DI Pedal

The LR Baggs Venue DI offers amazing stage performance. The LR Baggs Venue DI's high-end transformer ensures excellent sound in any live situation.

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Sound
Features
Ease of Use
Quality
Value
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The Wow Factor
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"Excellent DI" submitted June 1, 2014

By Michael G in Baltimore, MD
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Features
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The Wow Factor
Musical Background: Guitar, keys.
Music Style: Alt-rock, lots of 90's stuff, fingerstyle singer-songwriter kinda things.
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Sound: Great sound quality. The frequency boosts and cuts are nice and subtle with small adjustments but can also be used to add or remove quite a lot of sound. I often cut treble a bit and add to the bass and lower mids when using a smaller bodied Taylor (my 612ce, for example) for fingerstyle songs, I get a great deal of extra warmth. I have no complaints whatsoever with the Venue's sound. Feature: The preamp portion is easy to use and offers user selectable frequencies for the mids, which is ideal for getting your guitar to come forward in the mix or to tone it down a bit. The boost is solid and adjustable with very clean sound, I have it set at 5db and switch it on for some solos or when playing fingerstyle when set up for a pick, it gives back the volume I'd usually lose. I personally run a J Rockett Lemon Aid boost as the first pedal on my board and keep it on 99% of the time, so I don't need the boost on the Venue continually. I have played with JUST the Venue, however, and I used the boost to match the volume on my friends Martin D-28 with LR Baggs Anthem electronics while playing a 612ce without having to mess with any of my settings. The tuner is quite good, it's accurate and saves me needing to use a standalone box. Ease of Use: I find the Venue to be extremely user friendly. I had mine up and running with the tone I wanted inside of twenty minutes of taking it out of the box. Everything on it is self explanatory and well labeled...if any of the features aren't familiar to you the instruction manual will sort you out in no time. It's not the typical one sheet of paper you get with most pedals, it goes into detail on what each knob does and how to set it up properly. Also included is an insert showing how to use the tuner, though I find it to be the same as using the Boss TU-3 that most of us would be familiar with. Quality: This thing honestly feels like it's built to take a beating. The knobs are plastic, but the metal housing rises up at the top and bottom of the DI and all of the controls are recessed a bit, so it'd be very hard to accidently step on anything that isn't metal. The control knobs have a very smooth feel and are nice and tight, making it very easy to make your adjustments in small increments. The metal switches and input / output jacks are very high quality, I expect this product to last for years. Value: Yep, it's worth the money. Sure, $300 is a little steep for a DI, but the build quality, tone and features just put it over the top. Manufacturer Support: I've dealt with LR Baggs in the past regarding an Anthem system I bought to install in my Santa Cruz OM. The rep I got was extremely friendly and knowledgeable and gave me technical details that I needed in order to get the sound I wanted from the Anthem. That was part of the reason I went with another LR Baggs product. The Wow Factor: I personally got exactly what I wanted from a DI with this box. I was previously using a Baggs Para DI and a Boss TU-3...the sound quality on the Venue is better, without a doubt. It's also a gorgeous box. I like the fact that if I don't need effects I can just pull the Venue off my board and zip it into the case it came with to go out and play, rather than needing a DI and a tuner as well as either 2 AC adapters or a 1spot. The Venue accepts a 9v battery, which many other DIs do not...also a very handy backup & convenience feature. Overall: I run the Venue at the end of my board using the XLR out into a mixer most of the time. I play mainly Taylor guitars, which have pretty low output pickups but very nice tone. The Venue sends along an excellent, uncoloured sound and gives me a tone that's very close to my 816ce unplugged, which is exactly what I want in a DI. This thing is built like a tank, it's quite heavy and well made. I wish it weren't so large, simply for pedalboard real estate, but it's well worth it. A word of advice - this DI outputs damned near exactly what you put into it, with whatever you add through the preamp - a great guitar will sound even better, but a poor quality guitar will still sound poor. Cheap cables (by cheap, I mean the stuff guitar center will throw in when you buy an inexpensive guitar, or the $8 / 25 feet stuff) will degrade your sound quite a bit. I personally use Mogami gold, which is probably over the top outside of a studio, but I did test a few garbage instrument cables against Mogami and the new D'addario American stage cables and there was an audible difference.
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"Awesome acoustic preamp!" submitted April 27, 2010

By a customer from gmail.com
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Musical Background: Active musician, band leader.
Music Style: Folk, Celtic, Contra Dance
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Sound: I play Celtic style acoustic mandolin and need clean amplification to let the original sound of the instrument come through. This preamp produces a clean sound with minimal effect on the original acoustic instrument sound. The preamp is compatible with any style music. The equalizer settings allow you to tune it to a variety of venues. Feature: I really like the feedback filter, the boost button and the cool tuner. It could use an on/off switch to save battery life. Ease of Use: The interface is fairly intuitive. But if there are questions, the owners manual covers the details carefully. Quality: Well made. Seems rock solid so far. I am using in the studio and on the road. It packs up quickly it it's own custom case. Value: It seems a tad pricey, but I shopped around carefully and it is very competitive compared to similar models on the market. Manufacturer Support: No repairs needed so far. The Wow Factor: The design does have a professional appearance. Overall: I am hoping this product will last a few years. The only thing that might be handy is a built in AB input selector. I just added an external one for handling multiple instruments ...
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"Nice tool. Swiss Army Knife of DI boxes. Helps make Taylors sound reasonable." submitted December 12, 2013

By John H in Warrenton, VA
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Musical Background: Been playing since 1977 and focus on acoustic stuff at Church.
Music Style: Been there, done that. Focus now is praise and folk music.
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Sound: The Venue seems essentially transparent. Unless you modify the tone with the controls, it does a very good job of sending your guitar signal to the board. Feature: The tuner, while not the easiest to use, does function and is there when you need it.The built in effects OUT/IN loop has become surprisingly handy. I had no intention of using this feature, but my Boss CE20 Chorus pedal has become a reliable and useful addition to the stage setup. Thus with just two floor pedal devices I have the function of Tuner, Direct Box, EQ and Chorus. Pretty nice. The only thing missing is a source selector ability for when I have two guitars on stage at once (rare).The ability to mute (when in tuner mode) has become an essential attribute.My number 1 favorite feature is the fact the XLR signal does NOT have an output volume control. I do sound as well and use this box for the guitarists to ensure I get their signal the same way every time. This is similar to the idea that stage microphones should not have an on/off switch... ever.I've not needed the feedback notch yet so have no report.The EQ provides enough flexibility to modify sounds without going over the top. any more controls would be too many for frantic state adjustments. It has enough flexibility to make those tinny Taylors sounds a bit more like an acoustic. Ease of Use: This thing is pretty straight forward. If you need the effects loop, you need to understand voltage signal levels and such. The tuner is a bit quirky to use. Quality: The case seems quite robust. Time will tell if the foot switches and knob controls hold up. I would expect the knob controls to not take abuse well, but the design of the assembly recesses them a bit to help protect from wayward stomping... not foolproof, but much better than exposed knobs. Value: Some cringe at the price, but I say it is a good value for the tidying up it does on stage. If it lasts like it appears it might, costs becomes less an issue. Once this thing is in your gig bag and your past the "why oh why did I buy this" stomach ache, you'll likely forget its cost. Manufacturer Support: No support needed yet. No report. The Wow Factor: It just seems like this unit is designed by musicians for musicians. The look is cool. It sits unassumingly on stage. You can barely see it from the audience yet has a good user interface from above. Slick.It has enough Wow factor for my son who constantly borrows my Venue. Guess what he's getting for Christmas. Overall: I bought this last year from ZZ in the hopes of simplifying some stage setup and getting more control over the final sound of various instruments. So far so good.
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"Review of DI Acoustic Preamp" submitted August 14, 2014

By Phil L in Rio Rancho, NM
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Musical Background: I have been playing guitar for 51 years, leading worship for 18 years steadily. Only had one year of guitar lessons.
Music Style: Christian worship
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Overall: I like it a lot, esp. the tuner. The preamp has made a big difference in the way my guitar sounds thru our system. Thanks.
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