Are Gibson P90s good?

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116
Yes, I know they were the first to make them. This is perhaps too generic to be useful but I got a 2013 Gibson Les Paul '50s Tribute which came with some P90s. To my surprise these had no markings. I searched online and every retailer seems be selling similarly nameless ones.

Are they generally well-regarded? Did Tributes come with something cheap and "serious" models have something better? These sound quite good to my ears but wondering if there's a range of them.
 

macrossgeorge

Gold Supporting Member
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3,197
Gibson stock P90s are my favorite pickup of all time.
It seems that they have one production model as far as I know aside from some specialty ones with different names/styles such as custom shop and staple versions.
 

davesultra

The premier Hack Guitarist
Silver Supporting Member
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2,465
Most people like them, I do too. They’re well made, but some like a more “vintage correct” type with either A2/3/4 magnets and no wax potting. I don’t really have a reason to change them in my SG Junior. They won’t/shouldn’t have any markings on them. Just a gold colored baseplate. The more recent ones usual have a sticker on the bottom with the production date.
 

macrossgeorge

Gold Supporting Member
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3,197
FWIW I liked them much better than the Lollar set I tried and returned the same day. And I really like Lollar pickups in general. There was nothing wrong with the Lollars I just prefer the Gibson ones as they sounded fuller, fatter, but also are able to get a variety of sounds just using the volume and tone knobs. Gibson P90s are great. So are the IBG epiphone ones. They sound almost identical although the IBG ones are just a hair fatter IMO.
 
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3,941
Yes, yes they are. This might be one of the best sounding guitars I own.
35813C58-EB14-45C6-A856-E7C1BE782165.jpeg
 

icr

Member
Messages
2,982
Yes, I know they were the first to make them. This is perhaps too generic to be useful but I got a 2013 Gibson Les Paul '50s Tribute which came with some P90s. To my surprise these had no markings. I searched online and every retailer seems be selling similarly nameless ones.

Are they generally well-regarded? Did Tributes come with something cheap and "serious" models have something better? These sound quite good to my ears but wondering if there's a range of them.
I knew this guy with an electric guitar that also had some speaker box to which it connected by some wire. The contraption made noise...music even.
If you had something similar you might be able to check out those pickups yourself...
 
Messages
116
Thanks all. They sounded good to my ears (though the guitar needs a setup) but it was my first P90s Gibson – thought there were several lines like with their HBs.
 

Wms76

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
530
Yes, stock P-90s are excellent, both the one in my ‘62 ES-125TC, and 2 in my ‘01 LP Historic.
 

cap10kirk

Member
Messages
9,602
I really like the stock Gibson P90 in the bridge. I never got along with them in the neck though...Gibson uses the same pickup in both positions with P90s, there's not a different neck and bridge pickup, and imo that always makes the neck pickup way too dark and muddy with any amount of distortion.
 

Rossi163

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
2,778
Does anyone know if Gibson uses the same P90 in all of their guitars or do the Custom Shop guitars come with their own special version P90?
 
Messages
7,776
Yes, great pickups. IMO Gibson got it exactly right.

At the same time, I think the P90 is a very forgiving design for some reason. I've had cheapos that sounded great, and IME the best boutique ones haven't necessarily been a whole lot better.

As with any pickups, matching well with a particular guitar's voice is still important.
But I feel P90s might be more forgiving than humbuckers in that aspect as well.
Just my take on the subject of course.
 




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