NAMM 2023: LR Baggs promises “game-changing” performance and non-invasive installation from its new HiFi acoustic guitar pickup system

NAMM 2023: LR Baggs has unveiled a new acoustic guitar pickup system that offers pain-free peel-and-stick installation, high-fidelity electronics for top-quality sound, and a lightweight design that doesn’t interfere with your acoustic tone.

The HiFi system is designed to be just that, to offer a true representation of your acoustic guitar whether you are playing unplugged or through an acoustic guitar amp. All of the materials used for the build and the size of the pickups reflect the ethos behind the HiFi acoustic pickup system; tread lightly and sound transparent.

The system comes with a pair of pre-wired bridge plate transducers that LR Baggs says will preserve the integrity of your bridge plate. Both of these contact sensors have been newly designed for this purpose. 

Simply unpeel the paper on them and affix the transducers to the bridge plate and then mount the studio-quality preamp is discretely through your guitar’s endpin. No glue, no damage, no fuss.

The LR Baggs HiFi is a non-invasive, peel-and-stick pickup system for acoustic guitars that does not interfere with your acoustic tone

(Image credit: LR Baggs)

Performance-wise, those bridge plate transducers will give you an accurate representation of your guitar’s string balance, feel and dynamics. 

The HiFi preamp is of course designed to complement the pickups. Its controls can be mounted out of sight on the inner lip soundhole, and offer thumbwheel control over volume and tone. LR Baggs recommends the HiFi pickup system for all styles and performance situations, and says it is has “surprising feedback rejection”. 

All in all, that’s really what you want from an acoustic guitar pickup, right? Please don’t wreck the guitar’s innards. Please don’t squeal whenever there’s lots of stage volume. And please don’t make it sound like a duck. 

The LR Baggs HiFi system is shipping from 1 May and is priced $199. It is powered by a 9V battery and one battery should last you over 700 hours, which works out in song terms as approximately 4,747 performances of Bob Dylan’s Mr Tambourine Man, assuming you adhere to the original recording tempo. More than anyone could want, surely. 

If anyone reading is wondering around the convention hall at Anaheim, California, you can always head to Hall D (5406) to hear what all this sounds like in person. Otherwise, check out the intro video at the top of the page. For more, head to LR Baggs.

Jonathan Horsley

Jonathan Horsley has been writing about guitars and guitar culture since 2005, playing them since 1990, and regularly contributes to MusicRadar, Total Guitar and Guitar World. He uses Jazz III nylon picks, 10s during the week, 9s at the weekend, and shamefully still struggles with rhythm figure one of Van Halen’s Panama.