Suhr Silent Single Coil Backplate retrofit installed!

Discussion in 'Effects, Pedals, Strings & Things' started by PlexiBreath, Feb 7, 2006.

  1. PlexiBreath

    PlexiBreath Member

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    I've always been able to live with the Strat single coil hum, (I just got real good at riding the volume knob), that is until I moved into the house I'm living in now. Something about this place has a field that radiates a hell of a lot of hum into my single coil guitars. It's so bad I've only been able to play my Strat on switch positions #2 and #4.

    So I ordered the BPSSC system, (the SSC system for retrofitting S style guitars without the SSC built in), and just got finished installing it in my '56 Relic Fender Strat. This guitar already had a set of Suhr V60LP pickups, but the system doesn't like the reverse polarity middle pickup, so I ordered a normal pickup along with the backplate SSC system. I installed it today and have been putting it through it's paces for the last couple of hours.

    I understood before I bought it that it's not quite as effective as the system built into the Suhr guitars, so I was expecting some hum left over. A significant reduction was all I was looking for. But when I plugged the guitar in after installation, I was surprised how much of the hum was knocked off, more than I thought. I recorded the before and after hum in Protools so I could look at the wave form. Only the very high frequency hum was left, and at a much lower level. The lower frequency hum, which was what was driving me nuts, was completely gone! Some may say they never were bothered by single coil hum, (I'm one of them), that is until the day they have to gig in a room with noise problems as bad as this house, and I'm sure there are clubs with the same problem.

    The tone is not compromised! I had already played a Suhr with the built in SSC system and noticed no degration of the tone. But in this instance I'm very familiar with the tone of this specific guitar as it's my main axe and can attest to the fact that the tone is the same but without most of the hum.

    I now have a Strat I can play in this noisy house on all five switch positions, I'm very impressed and very relieved. Pappa likes!
     
  2. justabubba

    justabubba Member

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    thanks for the backplate post ... figured if suhr had his name on it it was for real, appreciate the confirmation. if you get a chance would you describe what was involved in doing the retrofit.
     
  3. PlexiBreath

    PlexiBreath Member

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    The instructions were very clear and left nothing to guess about.

    If you can wield a soldering iron you are good to go. You first must make sure all your pickups are of the same polarity. Essentially you break the ground side pickup wire connections to ground and insert the backplate coil system in series with the pickup ground side wire and ground, no change to the hot side pickup wire circuit, which is probably why it's so transparent. There is a small PCB with only two small trimpots that are only for calibrating the coil to match the strength of the pickups, this PCB will have seperate wires that each solders to it's associated lifted ground side pickup wire, a wire to ground, and two wires that solder to the backplate coil. You solder this up with the little PCB hanging out of the pickguard so you can set the trimpots (with the strings on and the guitar plugged into an amp) for the least amount of hum, then tape wrap or heat shrink the little PCB and slip it under the pickguard and screw down the last of the pickguard screws and you are done. I used heatshrink for all spliced/soldered wires and a large 1"/.5" heatshrink to cover the PCB to keep it from shorting.

    BTW, this is a bombproof PCB with plated through holes, don't let it put you off, (I should know, I'm a PCB designer myself).

    It's really easy, even the paragraph above makes it sound harder than it is.
     
  4. lv

    lv Supporting Member

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    good to know Kelley. Can't wait for my Suhr w/ SSC. Gonna get real crazy with the gain and enjoy the quiet.
     
  5. zenfreud

    zenfreud Member

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    Great thread, have been looking for info on this, sounds like potentially a cool customization for my Strat. Before I spend the bucks though, is this Suhr backplate system noticeably more effective than say just shielding the cavities of my Strat? And is this a new system? I didn't see it listed on the Suhr website. Thanks for the help.
     
  6. PlexiBreath

    PlexiBreath Member

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    Years ago I thoroughly went through and shielded a Strat completely including the inside of the pickup covers, but it did nothing for the hum, only slight hiss improvement that was too subtile to be worthwhile. The SSC system, on the other hand, is a dramatic reduction in humm.

    Regarding when it came out. I had read a while ago that the retrofit SSC backplate system was going to come out after this years NAMM, so not long after NAMM was over I put my order in.

    I don't know anything about the R&D behind the system, but I found it interesting on the installation paper at the end it mentions a party called "Ilitch Electronics LLC" in the warrenty section. Maybe they are the fabrication house.
     
  7. brightboy

    brightboy Silver Supporting Member

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    John Suhr did not design this system. He exclusively licensed the
    technology and made it work with his guitars/pickups.

    If you want to read the patent, go here:

    http://www.pat2pdf.org/

    and enter the following number:

    20050204905

    The inventor listed is Ilitch S. Chiliachki which supports what was
    documented.

    Cheers,

    Jeff
     
  8. justicetones

    justicetones Member

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    Welcome to the BPSSC club.. I installed it on one of my strats and finally got the normal middle pickup today and installed. I love it. I had posted before and after clips on here a few weeks ago. It is an amazing system.
     
  9. 9fingers

    9fingers Supporting Member

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    I wonder how the BPSSC would work/wire up on a Duncan Twangbanger bridge PU with a baseplate? Any info? Thanks.
     
  10. SilianaIEtone

    SilianaIEtone Member

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    Ilitch Electronics, LLC is a company for guitar electronics. Ilitch S. Chiliachki is the principal engineer of the company. He designed both SSC and BPSSC to be marketed and distributed as Suhr brand products.
    Ilitch Electronics also designs great guitar pedals, which you can check out (information + audio clips) at www.ietone.com
     
  11. hrowe

    hrowe Member

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    How much $$$?
     
  12. SilianaIEtone

    SilianaIEtone Member

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    Is this question directed to me and if yes, what would you like to know the price of?
     
  13. fr8_trane

    fr8_trane Member

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    I was gassing for the SSC while I was waiting for my new Bill Lawrence pickups (I had 280's and didn't like them). I am not interested in the Suhr system anymore. Seriously...noiseless SC pickups are now a mature and viable technology that needs no apologies.

    I A/B'ed my BL loaded strat with my buddies benchmark strat with stock pickups (the same comparison that made me sell the 280's) and while there were some subtle differences the BL's easily held their own and were actually better tonally in some respects. They are quiter than true humbuckers to boot. AFAIC the stacked SC has come into its own.
     
  14. EL34

    EL34 Silver Supporting Member

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    Who are dealers for the BPSSC?
     
  15. jlagrassa

    jlagrassa Supporting Member

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    I was interested in that system myself, I've had my Bill Lawrence pups in for a couple of months now and love them (L280S in the neck and Middle, L298SL bridge) got to say they are quieter than any humbucker I used and they still sound like single coils to my ears!
     
  16. hrowe

    hrowe Member

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    The system minus the pickups.
     
  17. JKoeth

    JKoeth Supporting Member

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    Man, I wish he'd come out with something like that for Teles.
     
  18. SilianaIEtone

    SilianaIEtone Member

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    Please refer to suhrguitars.com about this! Thanks
     
  19. Don Rusk

    Don Rusk Biggus Bearfootus Vendor

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    Ive been very curious about this system too.....

    Ive been very hapy using Kinmans,duncan stacks and even TVJones Filtertrons over the last few years.....

    but Id still be into something that really does sound as good as a real single....

    with stacked hummers you tend to lose a bit of lowend.... is there any of that with this system ???
     
  20. SilianaIEtone

    SilianaIEtone Member

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    Ilitch has already designed SSC for Tele and Suhr Guitars have some Tele guitars with the system.
    Since the original Tele guitars don't have back plates, it is questionable whether the guitarist would be willing to drill a hole from the back to the control cavity of the guitar, or to have a visible, flexible flat connection from the back plate to the control cavity. Any of these possible sets would look like a custom-made BPSSC system.
    Opinions are welcomed
    ----------------
    www.ietone.com
     

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