L.R. Baggs Acoustic Reference Amplifier – professional 2-channel combo for acoustic guitar.
Introducing the test of a unique two-channel acoustic furnace - L.R. Baggs Acoustic Reference Amplifier.
As, that people usually look first, and then listens, let's look at this first. The equipment is kept in brown, subdued wood-like colors, as is usually the case in amplifiers for acoustic instruments. It has a rather unusual shape, slightly rounded at the sides, which translates to this in a very specific way, I had to think for a while, before I managed to fit it into the protective styrofoam casing when packing it into a cardboard box 😉 Besides, it definitely stands out on the scene. Input panel, gauges (very stylish VU – to, what tigers like the most) and potentiometers is placed from above, on the front leaving only the loudspeaker and the logo. For the appearance and performance five with a plus.
Exactly, loudspeaker. There must be something unusual about this amplifier, since from the moment of its appearance it has been praised for such innovation and wins a lot of trade fair awards (among others, a nomination for the M.I.P.A. na Music fair). This thing is, among other things, a loudspeaker. The basic problem, The problem faced by manufacturers of acoustic ovens is the issue of linear transfer of the entire band in this way, to avoid too much treble and a cardboard/sandy overall sound. Inside this wonder we find a patented solution called Balanced Mode Radiator, that is, in our words, a Balanced Type Speaker. What is it about? First of all, about the shape. The membrane does not have a typical contour, it looks like a dome, this solution was previously used rather in tweeters. As a result, it has much better directionality, it can cover a much larger angle with the same range - I tried it in a quite large room and it turned out, that even for treble, a person with their back turned was not always able to pinpoint the exact location of the amplifier, which was easily possible with electrics and acoustic equipment unplugged. The speaker has 8 inches and is equipped with a 2-inch voice coil, and according to the manufacturer, the width of the blast is even 140 degrees for 108dB SPL! You have to nod your head appreciatively. no problem.
Power and possibilities - considerable. The digital amplification circuit offers 200W, and the combo is a closed design with two bass reflex ports on the sides of the speaker. In the tested furnace, we have two channels at our disposal, each equipped with a four-band equalizer, in which the potentiometers of the upper and lower diameter (low mid / high mid) they are also double, you can manipulate the mid frequency and the gain level - a few more knobs and we would have a nice parametric equalizer! Each of the inputs has a double socket for a standard 1/4 jack″ and XLR, Plus, they're equipped with Phantom Power 48 V. To this set should also be added inserted (operating very efficiently) notch feedback filter, phase switch and mute button. Plus, a quick look at the back and it turns out, it's not just an amp, but also a heavily equipped workstation. In sequence, occupying the entire width of the kiln, there are sockets and switches: pre/post EQ+FX, pre out, out, ground lift, lift in (it's useful), headphones, two effects loops, one for each channel, in the, parallel aux, tuner i footswitch…uff!
Have to admit, that's a really substantial arsenal. Hardly any equipment of this size can boast of such a number of possibilities - basically at a concert, thanks to Phantom power and the rest of the combo, it can successfully replace a mixer. We only take the effects rack (alternatively), guitar and just L.R. Bagg, It's not too heavy at all and has a comfortable grip. For all this for L.R. Baggs Acoustic Reference Amplifier mocne, rock&roll six.
Which of course is the best, that sound. You know, that everyone needs something different, however, a very extensive system allows you to achieve basically all types of timbre - we can even make a ukulele out of a bass-thumping guitar – just within the limits of good taste 😉 I was very impressed by the transfer of all the tones, you can really hear every overtone, every harmonic, each of course error and clink. That is, what should be heard. It's hard to write about transparency, colored – you can just create it, what is needed at the moment. This is it, what should be expected from an amplifier of this type! Having an average instrument, you can set the sound like this, that the shortcomings are covered. And having a truly classy masterclass instrument, the Acoustic Reference Amplifier allows you to sound the full natural sublime sound.
Very uneven ending, a losing battle to find a flaw, you can only try to stick to the price (above 5000 PLN) – although it is not much for professional equipment. The competition is more expensive 🙂 In a word - a revelation on the whole line! I'm very curious, what place the Acoustic Reference Amplifier will find on the market, but i'm pretty sure, that high enough. It works both on stage, as well as in trials.
short, fast, concise summary:
On the plus side:
- innovative Balanced Mode Radiator speaker, thus a wider radiation angle and more linear characteristics
- lots of possibilities, come in, go out, correction
- VU meters - ah:)
- perfect sound
It's a minus