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YouTube clips of a guitar pickup? Really?

jpage

Senior Member
Messages
9,226
Does anyone really believe that a youtube clip can possibly help anyone determine whether or not they would like a guitar pickup or not? Are people really that stupid?

It reminds me of the kids (I hope) that post here saying that they want to sound like Jimmy Page so they are going to put some $300 "signature Jimmy Page" humbuckers into their Squier Strat because they can't afford a Les Paul or a tube amp. That'll do it...the website said so! And the guy on youtube sounded great! :crazy
 

Tone_Terrific

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
35,066
Making a good sounding clip is only vaguely related to the sound of the gear but greatly related to the ability and taste of the player and recording quality.

If the player and techniques stay similar you may get a decent comparison (Pete Thorn, for instance) if that is what the player is shooting for, but who knows?

I use a lot of clips as cure for GAS rather than an inspiration.
 

stephenT

Member
Messages
2,468
Are people really that stupid?
Well, what a lovely thought and such a engaging way of starting a conversation.

Maybe it's your ears?

I don't know what kind of speakers you're running. I've got a pair of M-Audio BX5a(s), I think you can detect fairly subtile differences, depends on the quality of the original recording. Try this.

 

jpage

Senior Member
Messages
9,226
Maybe it's your ears?
No, it's common sense. Most folks wouldn't be able to tell the difference between a stock Epi humbucker and a Florence Voodoo if they were in the same room, never mind through the uber compressed format you tube needs. You could be using the best studio monitors in the world, and it isn't going to help you. And that isn't even taking into account the mic used to capture the audio, or the fact that the player cannot possibly be re-creating the clip used perfectly--pickups are all about nuance. And all of this is assuming that the tester is testing the different pickups through the same guitar, with the same age strings, tuned to exactly the same pitch.

Hogwash.
 

stephenT

Member
Messages
2,468
No, it's common sense. Most folks wouldn't be able to tell the difference between a stock Epi humbucker and a Florence Voodoo if they were in the same room, never mind through the uber compressed format you tube needs. You could be using the best studio monitors in the world, and it isn't going to help you. And that isn't even taking into account the mic used to capture the audio, or the fact that the player cannot possibly be re-creating the clip used perfectly--pickups are all about nuance. And all of this is assuming that the tester is testing the different pickups through the same guitar, with the same age strings, tuned to exactly the same pitch.

Hogwash.
Guess you didn't listen to the clip.
 

Craig Walker

"Anger, fear, aggression. The Bark Side are they"
Gold Supporting Member
Messages
21,823
It won't tell you *exactly* what a PU will sound like in person, but it can give you an A/B reference for comparison, when you have nothing else.
 

suhrbrutal

Senior Member
Messages
575
Well, what a lovely thought and such a engaging way of starting a conversation.

Maybe it's your ears?

I don't know what kind of speakers you're running. I've got a pair of M-Audio BX5a(s), I think you can detect fairly subtile differences, depends on the quality of the original recording. Try this.

If someone cannot hear the difference between those 2, it is time to quit music, and take up underwater basket weaving or something. :knitting

That 59 is the nicest Les Paul I have ever seen, holy cow. I am not even a Les Paul guy, that thing made me gasp when I saw it.
 

sixstring531

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
3,221
Though you can't (and I don't care how good your speakers are....nothing sound the same in your hands, through your guitar) get a 100% solid grasp on what gear sounds like, I think you can use subtle differences you hear in comparison clips to choose between pedals, pickups, speakers, guitars and amps.

I can hear differences and so far, youtube, soundclick, proguitarshop and other sites have been spot on with what I was expecting. THe only pedal I have ever tried that I couldn't even get close to the clip on tone was the Fulltone Soulbender -- and you know what, I found out I am not a fuzz guy :)

Calling people stupid because they have abilities, or hear things, you don't is simply ignorant.

For guys like me who live quite a ways from shops that carry high end gear, clips are mainly all I have to go on. Again, so far things are working pretty well as my setup sounds killer.
 

OldSchool

Senior Member
Messages
13,094
What!!? there is more to Dicky betts then just a Gold Top and a 50w marshall!? You SOB! Next your gonna tell me there isn't a Santa......:sarcasm
 

big jilm

Member
Messages
4,252
I hear lots of differences in clips. Airiness, etc. Is it perfect? Absolutely not. But listening to well recorded clips through decent speakers has given me ideas of pickup diferences. My ears are decent, I think. Like I said, it's not perfect, of course.
 

mnjordan

Member
Messages
1,368
If someone cannot hear the difference between those 2, it is time to quit music, and take up underwater basket weaving or something. :knitting

That 59 is the nicest Les Paul I have ever seen, holy cow. I am not even a Les Paul guy, that thing made me gasp when I saw it.
I have to agree about the Les Paul. That's simply the prettiest one I've seen, and that's on YouTube's lossy format.

Really nice production on that clip from GW, too. I would had to have a lot of takes - "and here we have Larry's all original 1959 Les PaOH MY GOD THIS IS THE SWEETEST GUITAR I'VE EVER SEEN"

Very cool of Mr. DiMarzio to let them use that grail of an axe for their clip - especially when his guitar sounded better than the R9 with his pickups in it!
 

lamentation

Member
Messages
319
Well, the answer that no one has mentioned, is to take the pickups out of the 59 and put in the dimarzios. then listen. Then put the others back in. How much damage would that do? Would that kill all the mojo? If so, there needs to be a Soldering Page instead of Gear Page...unless there is one.
 

THebert

Member
Messages
4,455
I think it helps plenty. Not the final say, mind you, but it most definitely helps.

What does 'really bright' or 'strong in the mids' mean to you? I don't know- but if we had a YouTube clip, I could see for myself if your really bright is the same as mine.
 

jpage

Senior Member
Messages
9,226
Guess you didn't listen to the clip.
The clip features TWO DIFFERENT GUITARS. I have owned 8 Gibson Les Paul Standards in my life and every one of them sounded distinctly different. That is (my relatively educated guess--who knows for sure) what you are hearing, not the pickups. Also, string age/brand plays into how a guitar records, as does intonation.
 

Pat Healy

Senior Member
Messages
10,949
I am that stupid.
I am also that stupid. Just because a clip happens to be on YouTube doesn't mean the audio is automatically unintelligible. A quality clip properly recorded into a DAW and heard on good speakers can certainly be sufficient to hear the differences between pickups. Although it does need to be different pickups in the same guitar to be a meaningful comparison.

I wish there were more stupid people making quality pickup comparison clips.
 
Messages
11,596
The clip features TWO DIFFERENT GUITARS. I have owned 8 Gibson Les Paul Standards in my life and every one of them sounded distinctly different. That is (my relatively educated guess--who knows for sure) what you are hearing, not the pickups. Also, string age/brand plays into how a guitar records, as does intonation.
the point is that even on a crappy YT clip, you could hear a difference between 2 guitars. since that difference is obvious, there's something to be said for clips on the internet. they can at least give you an idea of what's going on. i'll take that over sketchy descriptions about "mojo", and no clips, any day.
 




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