Is this a humbucker thing?

Discussion in 'Luthier's Guitar & Bass Technical Discussion' started by jamie.storm, Apr 23, 2008.

  1. jamie.storm

    jamie.storm Member

    Feb 8, 2008
    I was trying out a guitar I am interested in. It was a PRS SE singlecut. I've used single coils for a long time, but have recently been curious about sliding over to humbuckers for some of their more notable properties. (less noise by nature, more sustain, slightly darker/more complex tone)

    So anyway I was sitting there with said guitar plugged into an ac30 trying it out and liked it. Except for a couple of things:

    1. The amp became very muddy when the tone pot was rolled completly back.

    2. The bass was too heavy, I played a couple of my favorite Maj7 voicings and it sounded very abrasive.

    I have very little experience with humbuckers, but it makes no sense that it's their fault. (I can't be the first player to want more sustain on a clean amp LOL). So now I'm curious what should be done. I would probably replace the pick-ups in the SE with some nicer ones for starters, but also how much does the distance from string to pick-up matter? What I'm wondering is: could I adjust the pickups to have more of a balanced feel as opposed to being so bass-heavy?

    Would this in turn make the tone pot more usable?

    It is possible that the shop had this guitar set more for power chords and less for what I'm looking for. I would hate to choose a completley different guitar all together. I was hoping this guitar would be a good fit andwas under the impression PRS would be a good go to for Jazzy/Ragae sounding riffs.

    EADGBE Member

    Sep 23, 2005
    Were you playing through the neck pickup only?
  3. hubberjub

    hubberjub Silver Supporting Member

    Mar 31, 2008
    Gilbertsville, NY
    Humbuckers can be pretty muddy. It doesn't help that the PRS SE series aren't exactly high-end guitars. Try out a few different axes.
  4. rob2001

    rob2001 Member

    Jun 16, 2006
    Depending on the guitars and pickups I usually have to change amp and/or pedal settings when switching between a strat and a hum equipped guitar. To answer some of your questions, yes, you can make adjustments that affect how hums react but they are indeed humbuckers and aren't designed to sound like singles. I'm not farmiliar with PRS pickups but they should do the tones your talking about. I'd try making some adjustments to the rest of the rig first.
  5. webs

    webs Supporting Member

    Aug 1, 2006
    I'd try a new tone cap, I don't know what the PRS has but if it's anything like the stock Gibson ceramic disc, it's completely useless below 8. An orange drop cap clears that right up for just a few cents.

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