14

Time was, Fender Stratocasters used a three-position switch, corresponding to neck, middle and bridge pickups. Granted, single-coil, so just bear with me. Players discovered that, if you put the switch in the right position, you could get the neck-and-middle and bridge-and-middle sounds. Jimi Hendrix is a popularizer of this technique, and it became popular ...


13

Piezo-electric transducers lurking under the saddles on the bridge! just like acoustic guitars have possessed for ages. Now bassists have the opportunity to use this technology. It's not new, but quite new on basses. Next may be a 'hybrid' with standard pups and p-e ts.


13

There's a very good description of coil tapping in this article on the Seymour Duncan site: Coil tapping is when a wire runs off of the pickup windings at a certain point, somewhere short of the full amount. This means you can install a switch to select between a single coil pickup’s full output or a lower output, giving you two distinct levels of ...


12

The obvious answer is yes, you can! The question is if you really want it, because it will be easier to achieve an appropriate metal sound with humbucking pick-ups. Today's amps or (modeling) effects provide you with insane amounts of gain, so gain is no problem, even with (lower output) single coil pickups. As explained in topo morto's answer, hum can be a ...


12

Better pickups, if properly matched and installed correctly, can make your guitar sound better. Many players upgrade their pickups to improve the sound of their stock guitar. Certainly putting in the same or similar pups as the higher end model should help your sound considerably, as long as they are electrically and mechanically compatible. (Not a certainty....


12

At the time of writing this answer, there are roughly two ranges of electric violins available on the market. Inexpensive instruments in the $150 - $400 USD range, and better quality instruments starting around $800 USD and ranging up into the thousands. The build and physics of the violin create some technical issues that an electric guitar does not have, ...


11

The pickups are "powered" by the movement of the strings. The effects processor amplifies the signal until it's powerful enough to be heard. If you plugged your headphones in directly, there wouldn't be enough signal even when you bang hard on the strings to hear anything through your headphones.


10

You will surely not be able to play a strong single coil in the H-H guitar. You could tap a 4-wire humbucker for a single coil sound, but in my experience the tapped humbucker doesn't sound as "warm" as a separate single coil. I too wanted the best of both worlds and I took the following approach. Keep in mind that there are further differences in the ...


8

I have read much about the Telecaster, but I still don't know what Leo Fender was thinking. I know that Seth Lover was thinking the same thing, as PAF humbuckers had covers too. It was only into the 70s when you started seeing pickups with their covers removed. Even Strat pickups are covered, albeit with plastic. In part, the nickel cover was to make the ...


8

In short, yes! There are tonal differences between the two. Minis will have more mids and highs than the regular humbucker. This is due to two reasons. The first is the width of the pickup. The small width means that it will pick up a shorter length of the string, which translates to shorter frequency wavelengths (higher frequencies). The other factor ...


8

Every acoustic instrumentalist needs a means to transfer the vibrations of his/her instrument to electric signal. This can be done with a microphone or a pickup. If you wish to use a microphone, you will need to "close mike." To ensure that no other instruments are "heard" by the microphone, close-miking involves having a microphone be placed in close ...


8

The three position selector switch may actually be set up as: Single pickup Humbucking configuration Out of phase configuration These three sound dramatically different. The out of phase configuration cancels a lot of tones and accentuates some higher tones. Some describe it as thinner/jangly/cutting through. I use it on one of my guitars for a bit of ...


8

So this guitar is quite a unique model, the John Lennon signature. Its pickup is not an acoustic-guitar pickup at all but, well, basically a standard high-impedance humbucker in small format. It's no big surprise then that it sounds more like an electric guitar: such a pickup, together with the cable capacitance, forms a 2nd order lowpass filter, and that ...


7

That particular bass has passive electronics. The difference between passive and active electronics is fairly simple. In a passive system, the tone pot works by simply cutting frequencies. Active electronics, by use of a power source(batteries), allow you to also boost frequencies. This gives you greater control over the frequency spectrum coming out of ...


7

Ceramic magnets do produce a stronger field, but that alone doesn't actually change the sound, it just increases the total output (which, of course, will change the sound if you thereby drive an amp further into distortion). What's more relevant is that Alnico is magnetically "softer" (It has a higher reversible permeability) than ceramics, i.e. it changes ...


7

If someone doesn't know what they want thier guitar to do, they should always get HSH. I'd certainly say it's the most versatile set up. Given the usual wiring (5 way switch) with switch position 1 being the neck pickup and 5 being the bridge, HSH gives a great deal of tonal variety. For my tastes, position 1 on a clean tone can be a bit too boomy. Even if ...


7

These are purely magnetic pickups. In an mathematically "ideal" electric guitar, the body is completely rigid and doesn't vibrate at all. The only things affecting the vibration of the string are the physical properties of the string itself, how it is picked, and the effect of the magnetic field from the pickup (which is negligibly small). In solid-body ...


7

You actually need a "Preamp" with a line-out port and any mic preamp will do the job. A guitar pickup is a passive device that is to weak to create a line level signal, so it needs to be amplified to the line level for your speaker. Most probably your speakers have only a "Line-in" port. Line level is ok, but with preamps you may reach higher levels ...


7

As well as the in-bridge piezo pickups (either for acoustic tones or MIDI, which is what the Variax guitars use to feed the modelling system), there is a relatively rare second option: hidden pickups. The "Type I" Fender Marauder, for example, had magnetic pickups concealed under the pick guard:


7

Depends on how much your new pickup differs from your current one. Pickups have multiple properties. I'll list the most important ones and comment on their effect on your distortion sound: Output volume. Output depends on the amount of windings and the pull of the magnets in the pickup. More output changes the way your amplifier and effect pedals respond: ...


7

If you know what sound you require, and it is from one pickup (ie if you always keep your pickup selector in the same place) then there is really no need to have other pickups. Every pickup can be a source of interference and noise, so removing them reduces the potential for noise. Some also do it for the look, and in the past some have definitely done it ...


7

Electric guitars have a long sustain (and can be used for acoustic feedback for that reason) because the string does not lose significant amounts of acoustic energy. If you have good bridge and nut, the main loss of energy might be through the magnetic fields of the pickups, through magnetization losses of the string even if the pickup is switched off (if ...


7

The only real problem you may have with playing high-gain stuff on single coils is if the pickups are picking up hum, a high-gain signal chain that introduces a lot of clipping (distortion) is going to amplify that hum relative to the level of the actual notes played, potentially to the point where it could sound intrusive. Humbuckers, on the other hand, ...


6

I would just like to point out something that has not been mentioned. Using a finger from your right hand (and no amplification on the guitar), hammer on to a note on the fretboard. Listen closely, and you will hear two distinct notes ringing out. One is the note you would expect to hear -- the fretted note. The other note is the portion of the string ...


6

It is more important to get the distance from strings to fretboard correct than the distance from strings to pickups, so if you have the action setup right I would be content with minor discrepancies from the ideal pickup separation. There is so much difference between pickups anyway that if it really concerned you you could just buy a different pickup that ...


6

Bob. I changed the switching on my Tele a couple of years ago, using a propriety 4 way switch. This gives the original switching, plus the pups out of phase. It was a bit of a fiddly job, with an almost complete re-wire, but well worth it to have an extra sound. The new switch fits in place of the original, and looking at it, you wouldn't know. Obviously, ...


6

This may not help a lot, but here is one person's opinion + facts about magnetic cores: sonicwrench forum Q: What is the difference between Alnico and ceramic magnets? A: Alnico magnets are made of an alloy of Aluminum, Nickel, and Cobalt. Ceramic magnets are made from ferrites (often iron oxides). Magnetically speaking, ceramic magnets produce a ...


6

Often when a jack socket comes loose, the owner keeps tightening it from outside. This makes the wire attached to the part of the socket which is either inside the guitar body, or under the scratchplate, to turn round. It will only go so far before it either breaks or shorts or touches another component. Sounds like you need to get at the inside part of that ...


6

It's not normal in the sense of being (usually) 'what you want', but it is something that you have to deal with in multi-pickup configurations. It's not necessarily that the neck pickup is more powerful in itself; it's that the strings vibrate further from side to side at the neck, as they're nearer the middle of the string, so they induce a more powerful ...


Only top voted, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible