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Pickup output... what do you like?

JBG

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
606
Hello everyone.

After a lengthy discussion I had with a friend this weekend regarding pickup output, I thought I'd ask TGP community about their preferences. So, do people prefer lower output humbuckers (vintage PAF) in thier guitars, or higher output (ie: Duncan, DiMarzio replacements)?

For the sake of argument, the virtual guitar in question will be a 2 humbucker setup with just a volume & tone... basic LP stuff.

Thx.
 

c_mac

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
4,278
I'm right in the middle. I prefer something a little hotter than vintage but definitely don't like to go the high gain route either.
 
Messages
11,596
i prefer lower output, though it depends on the guitar. i've got "hi-gains" in my Rickenbacker, but they're very low output IMO. tele pups are SD Alnico II and Jerry Donahue. for humbuckers, i run DiMarzio Virtual PAFs in both my PRS and Ibanez. the Ibanez also has an Air Norton in the bridge. it's got a higher DC resistance than the VPAFs, but it's not any higher output. it's just re-EQ'd to bring a tighter bottom end with distortion.
 

aroman

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
2,808
WCR Godwood bridge
Something with 9k DC Resistance on the Neck.
 

Scott Auld

Administrator
Staff member
Messages
12,315
Low, whether it's HB's or single coils.

higher output (ie: Duncan, DiMarzio replacements)?
Those are not for me, but if you're playing certain types of rock it's pretty much a requirement, isn't it?
 

Tommy Biggs

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
6,664
I'm right in the middle. I prefer something a little hotter than vintage but definitely don't like to go the high gain route either.

I like that "little bit" extra too, but need it to clean up nice.
 

1973Marshall

Member
Messages
6,866
Depends on the guitar, but generally I fnd an overwound bridge and underwound neck to be sexy!

Also, I find the clarity and dynamics of a moderate output bridge always wins. You can compensate with pedals and post prod, but if you go high output you can't UNDO it! Better to be additive than try to be subtractive in this case.
 

RedTiger

Member
Messages
3,003
PAF-esque tonally and output, under 9 k. I like both the neck and bridge to be the same type.

About half of the SD and DiMarzio pickups are lower output.
 

super56k

Member
Messages
15
My favorite 'buckers are a wound set at 7k/8k so I like a brighter/thinner HB to start with. It's always easy to fatten things up with gain and bass, not so easy the other way.
 

buddastrat

Member
Messages
14,689
low as in vintage even for the heavy stuff. It's cleaner and clearer. I agree with super 56. Always easier to add/thicken to the clean pickups.
 

Brian0192

Member
Messages
78
low output.

I hate the sound of a higher out put pickup...it's like a guitar is a controller for the pickup to send a signal, not the guitar's signal is sent through the pickup. I like to hear the wood and my playing in it's true form, not compressed or beefed up like high output pickups tend to make it. In my one guitar with a relatively high output bridge pickup (a Dimarzio EVO 1), I also have a dimarzio HS-3 (VERY low output) single coil, and this guitar boasts a blend knob instead of a tone...so I can get the quack of a single coil & the sound of my guitar, along with the extra bite that a high output bridge pickup provides. In that sense, it's pretty cool.
 

Blix

Wannabe Shredder
Silver Supporting Member
Messages
27,625
Some higher output humbuckers sounds surprisingly good to me, like the SD Custom Custom. Ceramic magnet hi-output buckers sounds harsh(IMO)
Lately I have gone through a Dimarzio Paf, Paf Pro, and the mentioned SD CC in the same guitar, and the SD and Paf Pro suit me the best at the moment. But I want to try the EVH Frankenstein pickup and the 78' model as well... :)
 

Zero

Member
Messages
2,857
I like high output. I have in guitars now: DiMarzio's - Super 3, Super 2, FastTrack 2, Blaze 7; Duncans - Distortion, Hot Rails.

Super 3 is my favorite, it's 25K ohms or something.

I experimented recently and put an old 70's Fender single I had around in the bridge of a guitar. 4 to 5 K ohms. I really disliked it. I could deal with the hum but the lack of push was a problem. Then again everything I have is set up for high output PUs.
 

ABKB

Member
Messages
3,167
Low for the most part. But I do have a couple guitars with high on em that I like for certain songs. But a full night with high output pups wears on even my ears after a while.
 

JBG

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
606
I have been using a Norton (bridge) & Air Norton (neck) combo for a few years now, but have recently been installing the 36th Anniversary PAFs into some of my guitars. I had been using PAF Pros, but these 36's are REAL nice. The real surprise was when I coil-tap both pickups w/ both pickups active... surprisingly Stratty.
 




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