The SMP (Sliding Mag Pick-up) was designed by Gold Tone to assure accurate reproduction of authenic banjo tone. 1 SMP pickup with slotted bracket and two screws and wing nuts
The SMP+ is an updated version of the original SMP that required so
soldering or hole cut out in rim. Can also be adjusted so it does not
touch the banjo head.
1 Output Jack with mounting plate and two screws and nuts
1 Accessory kit containing 3 stick wire clamps and 1 hex wrench
Mounting the SMP is very easy and requires no tools.. you only need the included hex wrench.
1. The pick up bracket mounts on the coordinator rods (it will also
work if you have a single rod). Remove the banjo resonator if you have
one and place the head on a surface so the back of the banjo is facing
2. Detach the wing nuts and screws from the aluminum bracket. The slotted bar will now be loose.
3. Place the pickup on the head with the Gold Tone logo facing down
(towards the tailpiece) , under the rods, close to the top of the rim.
4. Attach the loose slotted bracket to the slotted bracket attached to
the pickup. Use the two screws and wing nuts. Place the wing nuts 1 on
each side for easy access. For now just attach them loosely. For dual
rods, one screw will be above the bottom coordinator rod (the rod
closest to the head) and the other screw just beneath the top
5. Now fold a piece of paper into a quadrant and place between the head
and the pick up. This is so the pick-up lines up very close to the
head but does not touch. Tighten the wing nuts using the allen wrench.
If you have only one rod, you must tighten very tight, but it will
remain very secure. Remove the paper.
6. Now you are ready to attach the output jack. this output jack
assembly will attach to the hook brackets, usually at the 4 o' clock
position. Unscrew the input jack from the bracket...making sure you
remember the line up of the washers.
7. Remove the two screws from the bracket. Place the slotted straight
bracket under two of the hooks. The opening of the input should face the
tailpiece. (This way the cable may be secured around your banjo
8. Place the two screws in the L bracket slots and then secure them to
the threaded openings in the straight slotted bracket. (The J hooks will
be between the two brackets) The screws may be on the inside or outside
of the J hooks ,as long as they are apart from each other.
9. Now assemble the input jack on the L bracket, placing the washers in the same places.
10. You will now have two loose wires, one from the pick up and the
other from the input jack. On a banjo with a flange, insert the input
jack end through the flange hole, towards the inside of the rim. Connect
the wires together using the plastic jacks. They just snap together.
11. You have three sticky wire ties to secure the loose wire in the
inside of the rim. Before you apply the ties, experiment with sitting
and standing with the banjo, using a cable, so yo8 know for sure you
have attached the output jack to the most conveniant location. Once you
finally decide, attach the sticky ties to secure the loose wires.
SMP Plus Pickup F.A.Q.
How do I change the tone of the SMP pick up?
The pickup may be placed on the coordiantor rods in any position
between the top of the head and the bridge.. As it gets closer to the
bridge the treble will increase, but also the out put will weaken, since
it is a magnetic pick up and it is located further from the strings.
Do I need a pre-amp?
No.. the humbucking pickup usually has plenty of gain...although a
volume pedal or pre-amp to control tonality certainly may be used.
What about feed back?
That's the great feature about the SMP! Compared to a mic or transducer
pick up, the feedback possibilities are reduced dramatically
Can I use the SMP with Nylon or gut strings?
No ..It will only work with steel strings.
Will the gauge of the string affect the output?
The thicker the gauge, the more the magnet responds to the string vibration, but it really is hardly noticeble.
What about using two SMP's in my banjo?
If you are looking for the fattest and most adjustable tone, two SMPs
may certainly be used. A common professional pick up "trick" is to use
multiple pickups wired to a stereo output plug. Then use a stereo cable ,
which splits to a Y. Plug each of these cables into a amplifier, or
P.A. channel. Now you may use different effects or reverbs, in each of
the channels and have a wide variation of different tones.
What is the warranty of the SMP Pick up?
The SMP pickup has a 5 year warranty. It has no moving parts, so it should last indefinitely