Backplate Silent Single Coil (BPSSC) System

Discussion in 'Guitars in General' started by david henman, Jul 10, 2006.


  1. david henman

    david henman Member

    Messages:
    3,051
    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2006
    Location:
    toronto area
    http://www.suhrguitars.com/pickups.aspx#bpssc

    ....i just had one of these installed in a new g&l legacy with stock single coils, and used it on two gigs this past weekend.

    i am completely sold.

    i now have to wonder: will the backplate system render obsolete the noiseless single coil pickup industry?

    in my case, i would have to say its a no-brainer. why bother with noiseless single coils when you can have your cake and eat it, too?

    i haven't gotten such amazing tone on stage in decades. even my girlfriend noticed a dramatic improvement over my other guitars. on saturday, once i reduced the gain levels on both tonebone pedals, i was inspired to give one of the best guitar performances in memory.

    -dh
     
  2. Dana Olsen

    Dana Olsen Gold Supporting Member

    Messages:
    7,602
    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2002
    Location:
    Santa Barbara, Marin, Chico, CA
    Excellent David -

    When you're hot, you're hot!

    I'm a total Vintage queer, and I was AMAZED at the SSC system when I tried it out at Suhr in Feb this year.

    Congrats, Dana
     
  3. brattmoore

    brattmoore Member

    Messages:
    395
    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2005
    Location:
    Paris, France
    Good but ULTRA EXPENSIVE though !
     
  4. Joe Perry

    Joe Perry Gold Supporting Member

    Messages:
    2,723
    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2004
    Location:
    Bucks County, Pa
    While I think it's worth the money I don't think the SSC system will get people to stop buying noiseless pickups. Some of the new noiseless designs are getting pretty good and "close enough" for most. More on that later....

    I have the factory SSC in both my classic S & T and think it's worth every penny.

    I also have a Fender CS Rory Gallagher strat that I really like and I've been thinking of getting the backplate for since the pickups are all the same wind (non RWRP middle) and wouldn't need replacing. Therefore, if you already have a guitar that you really like and wouldn't also have to change pickups it's well worth the ~$250. Most (like me) have spent way more on stuff that doesn't make that much of a difference in tone on a strat like this.

    Lastly I will admit that I'm thinking of getting some of the new noiseless Dimarzio Area pickups for my third strat that has Texas Specials. I've haven't been happy with them for a while now. In this case new pickups (~$200-250 for Suhrs, Fralins, Lollars, etc) plus the backplate would be too much for my third in line strat.
     
  5. Scott Cioe

    Scott Cioe Member

    Messages:
    508
    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2002
    Cool - I didn't think that the system was available for "T" style guitars. If I remember right, that is what they mentioned on the website - Is this a new development?

    I would love to have it on my G&L ASAT - It is typically just a bit too noisy for me with gain in a live situation.
     
  6. Joe Perry

    Joe Perry Gold Supporting Member

    Messages:
    2,723
    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2004
    Location:
    Bucks County, Pa
    Sorry, I ment it's only available from the factory on their T's. No aftermarket system available. I *think* they embed it some how into the body since there is not a real big cavity in a Tele like a strat.
     
  7. david henman

    david henman Member

    Messages:
    3,051
    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2006
    Location:
    toronto area
    ...yup, that is the downside. what price tone, eh? you're looking at the cost of the system PLUS the cost of replacing the middle pickup PLUS the cost of shielding PLUS the cost of paying a tech to do the work. as much as $500, perhaps more. for those that can easily afford it, its probably a no brainer. for the rest of us with limited funds, it creates a dilemma.

    for example, now that i have re-discovered the joys of real single coils, i will be re-assessing my '86 strat plus, which is loaded with kinman traditional mk IIs, which are truly amazing noiseless pickups. certainly, i'll a/b this guitar with the g&l legacy with the SSC system, and report back.

    however, i fully expect the kinmans to be a disappointment when compared directly with the legacy. so, i'll be looking at not only the approx $500 for an SSC installation, but an additional $300-$400 for new pickups. this, of course, would be offset somewhat by selling the kinmans (we need a broken heart smilie!).

    :worried

    -dh
     
  8. Scott Cioe

    Scott Cioe Member

    Messages:
    508
    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2002
    Oh, bummer...But thanks for the clarification...
     
  9. mybusinessmy

    mybusinessmy Member

    Messages:
    314
    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2006
    The BPSSC is an excellent system. I am very happy with mine as well. I would say the noise reduction falls anywhere from 70-80%, and all the low frequency hum has dropped off. It is not required to shield the guitar, but that would make it even better. I think with this system it might just be 10% noisier than a humbucker, as I was doing an A/B with my humbucker in the bridge under high gain.


    I don't think that this will render noiseless pickups obsolete, as the price of this system alone is comparable to a high-end set of strat pickups.
     
  10. david henman

    david henman Member

    Messages:
    3,051
    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2006
    Location:
    toronto area
    ...actually, i think it might, at least for those of us who rejoice that we can now enjoy that traditional single coil magic without the traditional single coil noise. pricey, very, but well worth it, in the end!

    -dh
     
  11. johnmfer

    johnmfer Supporting Member

    Messages:
    1,051
    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2005
    Location:
    Phoenix
    I would totally shell out the $$ for this for my Jazzmaster if there was a system available for that model. I know Suhr doesn't do JMs, but I have a very large top cavity rout under the pickguard and I know something could be made to fit in there.
     
  12. brattmoore

    brattmoore Member

    Messages:
    395
    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2005
    Location:
    Paris, France
    I always thought that 180-200 usd would be a nicer price for the back plate.
     
  13. mybusinessmy

    mybusinessmy Member

    Messages:
    314
    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2006
    While I agree with that 100%, as I know what it has done for me and many others like yourself, it seems even on this board it isn't stopping people from purchasing noiseless pickups. Even some people that are aware of the BPSSC are still purchasing Kinmans and Dimarzio Area pickups (which of course still do not sound 100% like a SC).

    A lot of people still don't even know what a BPSSC is and that it exists...
     
  14. david henman

    david henman Member

    Messages:
    3,051
    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2006
    Location:
    toronto area
    ...fyi, from the fdp site:

    "...I had a set of the Kinman Mark ll's installed in a Fender Strat and I also have a Suhr Strat with the SSC system and V-60lp pickups. While I thought the Kinmans were a great product for a noiseless pickup I always preferred the tone and feel of my regular single coils so I sold the Kinmans and decided to live with the noise. Anyways, I had been contemplating getting a Suhr for some time and when they came out with the SSC that put me over the edge and i ordered one. My Suhr with the SSC has a push/pull tone pot that can engage and disengage the SSC sytem. If you are playing with a lot of gain or at place that causes your single coils to pick up noise just push the button in and it is as quite as a humbucker. More importantly I cannot tell any difference in tone with the sytem on or off so I just leave it on all the time. Plus, while I don't know exactly how the SSC works I have read it is more than just a simple dummy coil as Suhr is getting a patent on it. You can read more about the SSC in the Suhr Forum. To sum it up if you like the sound of your single coils and you want them to be noiseless this is a great system. I cannot recommend it enough."
     
  15. Joe Perry

    Joe Perry Gold Supporting Member

    Messages:
    2,723
    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2004
    Location:
    Bucks County, Pa
    The SSC is also what pushed me over the edge when I was on the fence about special ordering a Suhr Calssic S. I liked it so much I bought an ever so slightly used T with the SSC. Now I'm hooked on Suhrs.
     
  16. Joe Perry

    Joe Perry Gold Supporting Member

    Messages:
    2,723
    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2004
    Location:
    Bucks County, Pa
    Agreed. It's only been out about a year. Besides forums like this it may not be real well know yet. I think the final total price after acounting for the backplate, compatible pickup(s), shielding & installation, if your not a DIYer, is still what is pushing people towards noiseless pickups. A $500+ mod to a thousand dollar guitar is a lot to swallow for some when Dimarzio's are about $180 for the set.
     
  17. mybusinessmy

    mybusinessmy Member

    Messages:
    314
    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2006
    If someone already has the pickups that they want to do this with, then you don't need to add that cost, but it is still very pricey. Selling your middle pickup will help (to varying degrees on what it is). Installation is a great thing to mention, as you will have to pay to solder the middle AND install the system, although there are quite a few people that know how to do this themselves.

    I would like to know what percentage you get up to when you do the shielding process, as I think that's crazy you are supposed to add that. I did not shield, and I have a significant noise loss, although the noise is still audible w/treble knob all the way up, but to a very "liveable" extent.
     
  18. Eric Pykala

    Eric Pykala Member

    Messages:
    1,006
    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2002
    Location:
    London, Ontario, Planet Earth
    I haven't got a clue how to measure the "percentage" of noise the shielding makes, but it is recommended by Suhr. Shielding helps pretty much any guitar, particularily singlecoils. Shielding is also something anybody with a pair of scissors and a sharp Xacto knife can do sitting in front of the idiotbox or whatever. It's far from rocket science; it's just time-consuming.
    If you can solder, you can install a BPSSC. Sell your old RWRP middle pickup to recoup part of the cost of the new one.
    Here's my new math:
    BPSSC kit. Call it around $250.
    New middle pickup. Call it $50-80, depending on your tastes. Sell the old one for $25-40 (just picking reasonable numbers out of the air).
    One or two sheets of self-adhesive copper foil $5-14.
    Two hours of personal labour $0.
    I call this a $300 upgrade if you know which end of a soldering iron to hold onto. Three toneless,er, noiseless pickups will set you back, what ,$300?
    You decide.-Eric
     
  19. mybusinessmy

    mybusinessmy Member

    Messages:
    314
    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2006
    Excellent post, John. I know I cannot go back to a noiseless pickup after using noiseless pickups before and then putting in the V60LP's and the Backplate!
     
  20. doc

    doc Member

    Messages:
    5,422
    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2005
    Location:
    Middle Tennessee
    I'm sure this is a fine product and works well. Another less expensive approach that has made my Strat quieter than my LP was to add some extra shielding and rewire as per the directions provided by John Atchley at the GuitarNuts site.
     

Share This Page