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Question re pre T tops in 67 es335

ndavis1971

Member
Messages
101
I have a 1967 ES 335 that has the late patent number pre T top pick ups. I’m curious how these compare tonally to the ones that preceded them and the T tops that came after. They read around 7.2 (neck) and 7.25 (bridge) and are somewhat bright. But I’ve never played a guitar with older pafs and was curious about the sonic differences and how bright they’re supposed to sound in these?
 

danelectro

Member
Messages
2,058
I had a 1966 ES-335 with the stock non-T-top patent sticker pickups. To my ears, they were bland sounding. They didn’t sound bad, but they were nothing special. I had another set that had been pulled from a 1965 335 and reinstalled into a Custom Shop SG Standard by the person whom I bought the guitar from. Again, they were just average sounding. I eBay’d the patent sticker pickups and bought a pair of Throbak PAFSs for a quarter the price. The Throbak pickups had a lot more character.
 
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Voxshall

Member
Messages
1,064


I'm not sure what the pickups in my 68 ES335 are, I don't want to take the covers off, but they read 7.5k and 7.4k and I assumed they are T-Tops or pre T-Tops. I compared them to the original pickups in my mates 64 ES335 which read 7.2k in the bridge and 8.2k in the neck. Both guitars sounded very similar acoustically and the neck pickups sounded near identical but the bridge pickup in my 68 sounded a bit better, had more meat to it. We then got out a Les Paul custom from 1960 and compared the PAF's and the bridge pickup had this big fat round treble thing that was pretty awesome but it was in a very different guitar.

Over all I really like the Pat number or Pat number T-Tops or pre T-Tops whatever they are in my 68, they have less mids but are also less bloated and have less bass so they are more versatile when playing in a setup where I'm changing between Gibsons and Fenders using the same settings on an amp and on effects pedals. I sometimes love the deep switch up on my Two Rock with my Fender guitars for instance, this setting is unusable with my usual Gibsons, but to my surprise it sounded fine with my 68 ES335, I had a similar experience with fuzz pedals, my PAT pickups worked with many of my previous (Fender only effects). I didn't find the pickups to sound flat but the acoustic voice of the guitar is incredible so maybe it's just a good match.

Seymour Duncan Jazz pickups are reportedly T-Top like and the 59 is PAF like and I think Seymour himself prefers the Jazz in the neck. I play soul and funk in a band so my Les Paul with Stephens Design PAF is actually the worst sounding guitar I own in that setting.
 

mad dog

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
10,961
The stock pickups in my '66 ES 335 were the best humbuckers I've heard yet. Quite lively, twangy with this beautiful edge as the volume went up. I've played other 335s from that era that didn't even come close, though they no doubt had the same pickups. Why that would be, I have no idea.
 

zombiwoof

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
5,819
I had a 1966 ES-335 with the stock non-T-top patent sticker pickups. To my ears, they were bland sounding. They didn’t sound bad, but they were nothing special. I had another set that had been pulled from a 1965 335 and reinstalled into a Custom Shop SG Standard by the person whom I bought the guitar from. Again, they were just average sounding. I eBay’d the patent sticker pickups and bought a pair of Throbak PAFSs for a quarter the price. The Throbak pickups had a lot more character.
I don't remember when this happened, but at some point Gibson was putting 300k volume pots in guitars, and at the worst they also had 100k tone pots. The low-reading pots had many people thinking the pickups were bad, when it was just the inadequate pots. Again, I'm not sure if mid-sixties guitars already had this problem, or if it was later, but it did cause some issues for players with what they though were bad pickups.
Al
 

SoPhx

Member
Messages
366
The change to 300K was in '73. Maybe one of biggest factors in the T-tops having less mids and push is probably the shorter magnets they were supplied with as well as the use of A5.
 

zombiwoof

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
5,819
The change to 300K was in '73. Maybe one of biggest factors in the T-tops having less mids and push is probably the shorter magnets they were supplied with as well as the use of A5.
Thanks, I was thinking it might have been the 70's, but couldn't remember.
Al
 
Messages
2,062
IMO, there's a bit of inconsistency in the mid 60's (lots of sterile, meh, weak, pickups), but '67 up to early 70's Gibson 'buckers are just wonderful.
 




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