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Are there some acoustic guitar pickups/preamps  that don't need batteries?
Refering to my Ktone Roundback guitar I get no sound when I plug it in. I did try and peek under the screws of the volume control, but I am thinking the wires lead to the pickups/input jack??

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Pickups that do not use batteries are called passive. Pickups that require batteries are called active. All preamps are active so need batteries. Many preamps are installed in the guitar (in the block that houses the volume and tone controls) because the cable length from pickup to preamp should ideally be short. There are external preamps which are used to improve the quality of passive pickups.

In your guitar, if there are no batteries then you have a passive pickup. A battery compartment should be obvious, either because it has its own hole in the back or side of the body (anywhere on that round back on your Ktone guitar) or a small door on the control panel, which looks to me as though that is not the case on your guitar.

If you are happy removing the control panel that will give you access to see what is going on inside (with a torch and maybe a small mirror). It may be that a soldered joint has dried out or a component has failed. Either check for yourself or get a local guitar technician to check, although I suspect that getting someone else to do it will be more expensive than the guitar as Ktone guitars are, unfortunately, not of high quality, which is perhaps why they are no longer made. If you have a good guitar you may feel it is worth repairing or replacing the electronics. Companies like K&K, Fishman and L. R. Baggs all make quality pickups for acoustic guitars. The challenge will be finding a control panel that fits your guitar - or a slightly larger one and expand the size of the hole to match.

Do let us know what you discover and how you choose to proceed.

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I'm not sure if this applies to your situation, but it has bitten be before.   If your preamp has a built in tuner, make sure the tuner is not turned on.  This can disengage the preamp.  I know this is the case on my Fishman preamp in one of my acoustics.

Just food for thought - when I put a pickup in my Bourgeois, I did not want to bother with a battery.   I opted for a K&K Pure Mini passive pickup.    This can be routed through an external preamp which is a bit easier to  deal with battery changes.

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