L.R. Baggs Synapse personal PA

Ben Morgan-Brown meets a very impressive newcomer

Singer/songwriter guitarists are getting spoilt for choice when it comes to high quality personal PA systems and amplifiers. Not so long ago, all that were on offer were barely modified combos originally designed for electric guitar. How things have changed! Today you can take your pick from miniaturised line arrays to conventional looking, but properly designed, combo sized amps that will do justice to the finest amplified guitar sound and a high quality vocal feed from a top quality mic.

And now there is a new entrant at the top end of the market from L.R. Baggs, the US maker best known for its acoustic guitar pickups and pre-amps. Called the Synapse it’s immediately visually striking, somehow managing to look both traditional, thanks to its wood casing, and yet futuristic, courtesy of its front facing horns.

Those horns are the secret to the Synapse’s formula as they project a 180 degree horizontal waveform at all frequencies, which means the performer’s guitar and vocals can be heard more or less anywhere in a room. And with a punchy 500 Watts on offer that could be quite a large venue.

Equipped with simple and direct (yet powerful) EQ controls, the twin channel Synapse is extremely easy to set up, lending itself to one-person use and not requiring a degree in audio engineering to get the best from – far from it on fact. With phantom powering it will take the best condenser mic you can afford as well as the input from your guitar.

So how did we get on with the Synapse? Watch Ben Morgan Brown put the newcomer through its paces in our review.

AR Reviews are recorded in a top quality studio with the finest equipment. To get the best from our reviews and really hear the instruments perform make sure you listen on good quality speakers or headphones!


L.R. Baggs Synapse Personal PA System

UK price: £2,299.99

Compression: woofer and tweeter

500 watt, Class-D amplifier

2 Channels featuring separate:

– Gain control

– 3 Band EQ for shaping your sound

– Reverb level control

– Phase inversion

– Mute

– 20 dB pad

– 48 V phantom power

– 1/4”/XLR combo input

Custom reverb with 3 length settings

1/4” and 1/8” Auxiliary inputs

Auxiliary volume

Master volume

Mix input and Mix output

118 dB max, 115 dB continuous