Pickup configs (HSH, HSS, HxS etc) - Jemsite
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post #1 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-10-2015, 04:28 PM Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
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Pickup configs (HSH, HSS, HxS etc)

Hi all

Whats your favourite pickup config and why?

i'm considering getting a custom body made, and i'm thinking about pickup configurations.

I was thinking about an HSH arrangement, but there are many options to choose from.

This config seems to be popular with JS series at the moment, and ive seen some RGs with this layout too:

http://www.ibanezrules.com/namm/images/2010/012.JPG

It looks like a mini humbucker in the neck? What is the benefit of this? over the usual Hum Hum layout.

I welcome your thoughts.

Thanks
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post #2 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-10-2015, 05:17 PM
 
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Re: Pickup configs (HSH, HSS, HxS etc)

Pickup combos really depend on what type of sound you are going for.

One of my friends and I made a 3 humbucker guitar and then wired up 5 way rotory switches to each pickup then had spst switches to turn the different pickups on and off.

I think that makes a 125 total sounds, not to mention the volume and tone controls.

Is that practical? not so much in a live setting. Most of the time 2 humbuckers can do about whatever you want with the right switch/hardwear.
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post #3 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-14-2015, 01:49 PM
 
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Re: Pickup configs (HSH, HSS, HxS etc)

The guitar I have been playing most lately (rg3xxv) has that Hum-Single configuration like the link in the original post. It has a single space Air Norton and is a great sounding pickup in that spot. I don't know if it is the pickup or the placement causing it, but it is much easier to get harmonics, compared to other neck pickups that are next to impossible to get any harmonics out of. I prefer the H-H config over the H-S-H, as a middle single coil seems to get in the way when picking unless I lower it way down.
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post #4 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-14-2015, 04:50 PM
 
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Re: Pickup configs (HSH, HSS, HxS etc)

I would be a HSH man, to such a degree that I no longer own any other configuration. Simply for the versatility, the neck for a smooth tone, the bridge for a harsher more aggressive sound and the middle for more quacky straty sounds. I also like the HH sound.
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post #5 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-14-2015, 05:23 PM Thread Starter
 
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Re: Pickup configs (HSH, HSS, HxS etc)

Further reading suggests that the mini humbuckers near the neck is trying to achieve the same warmth you get from the neck humbucker on a 22 fret guitar on a 24 fret guitar.
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post #6 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-14-2015, 06:04 PM
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Re: Pickup configs (HSH, HSS, HxS etc)

I like HSH best. It loons cool, because you have loads of pickups, and you do get the best of both worlds, with the in between sounds for stratiness that you just don't get on an HH even with the fabled Petrucci switching...

I have a custom superstrat with HH and although the split sounds are ok, I do find myself missing the middle sc and split bridge he sounds...
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post #7 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-14-2015, 06:26 PM
 
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Re: Pickup configs (HSH, HSS, HxS etc)

For clean SSS or SS, for distortion HH, full sized on both with coil-tap or at least phase reversal on neck, and I wish I could have HSH but never owned one of those but can see why that's the best and most popular.

Joe himself says the small humbucker on neck on 24 fret one gets the sweet spot because full sized neck humbucker would be too close to bridge and not bassy enough. But full sized neck humbucker has enough room to fit on 22 fret JS model and thus why he keeps it around.
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post #8 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-15-2015, 10:58 AM
 
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Re: Pickup configs (HSH, HSS, HxS etc)

Quote:
Originally Posted by jono View Post
I like HSH best. It loons cool, because you have loads of pickups, and you do get the best of both worlds, with the in between sounds for stratiness that you just don't get on an HH even with the fabled Petrucci switching...

I have a custom superstrat with HH and although the split sounds are ok, I do find myself missing the middle sc and split bridge he sounds...
I dunno, I like my Carvin which is HH, but after finding out that an Ibanez S1 combined with a gravity storm bridge pup gets amazing twang, sometimes I wonder if I miss the middle single. I do have 2 mini switches that coil split the JB200, and the pups sound great coil tapped, it's still not an Ibanez S1.
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post #9 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-15-2015, 11:00 AM
 
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Re: Pickup configs (HSH, HSS, HxS etc)

Quote:
Originally Posted by 63Blazer View Post
For clean SSS or SS, for distortion HH, full sized on both with coil-tap or at least phase reversal on neck, and I wish I could have HSH but never owned one of those but can see why that's the best and most popular.

Joe himself says the small humbucker on neck on 24 fret one gets the sweet spot because full sized neck humbucker would be too close to bridge and not bassy enough. But full sized neck humbucker has enough room to fit on 22 fret JS model and thus why he keeps it around.
I still love the Cruisers in my 560. Single sized humbuckers are REALLY sweet
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post #10 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-15-2015, 11:22 AM
 
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Re: Pickup configs (HSH, HSS, HxS etc)

I'll chime my $0.02 and pick the HH or SH config. I rarely used the middle pickup on any guitar I ever owned and with my picking style I'm always hitting that mofo'ing middle pickup with my pick. I would lower than thing as far as it would go to get it out of the way, which then defeats the purpose of it altogether at that point. Lastly it's the look, I don't like HSH, seeing all that hardware underneath the strings. I'll use push pulls pots to tap the coils instead of adding holes for switches too.
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post #11 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-15-2015, 11:30 AM
 
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Re: Pickup configs (HSH, HSS, HxS etc)

I'm a HH guy all the way. The most useful set up I have is a Super Distortion in the bridge and a tele humbucker in the neck. I never use singles and never really cared for their sound.
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post #12 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-15-2015, 12:08 PM
 
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Re: Pickup configs (HSH, HSS, HxS etc)

Quote:
Originally Posted by MatiasTolkki View Post
I still love the Cruisers in my 560. Single sized humbuckers are REALLY sweet
Do you have one and how does it sound?

Does it sound like a full sized humbucker? If it does then I am game. I did have a Duncan Hot Rails and while it had midrange, it lacked the bass a full humbucker is known for.

I may put one in my ESP Viper which has the two full sized humbuckers. Since it's like most of their models and has 24 frets, the full sized humbucker in the neck lacks the full fatness opposed to where it would be better placed in a 22 fret neck. Those extra two frets push the neck humbucker too close to the middle.

I would use a pickguard my luthier could make and place both pickups on that and move the cruiser about 1/2" inch closer to the neck than where the full sized humbucker lies. I hope I can do this and get a bassier sound and get close to the sound of a full sized humbucker as found on a 22 fret guitar. Joe Satriani describes just this scenario and thus why he used the Cruiser for his 24 fret model.

Also I would want to put a phase reversal push pull pot so I figure since the Cruiser is four conductor wiring, it would be treated the same as a four conductor wired full sized humbucker. I would want to reverse phase when both pickups are on to cancel some frequencies and get some non-hum, Fender like sounds.

Other than employing a cruiser, maybe there's a really, really fat neck humbucker being put on a 24 fret neck out there that can sound like a regular humbucker on a 22 fret neck. I am sure Joe tried those options. Some old school, Norlin era Gibson humbuckers had really fat sounding tones in the neck position and too fat for most ears. But nobody observed the possibility of a full two octave neck and where a fat humbucker could actually be a better option.

I also thought of a JB jr or lil '59 in the neck of my guitar but I am sure those two have Fender widths as opposed to the narrower Gibson widths. I like the look of the little JBs and '59s because of the pole pieces but if they don't line up on Gibson width neck, then you lose power and thus the superiority of the blades which can work on Gibson or Fender widths equally well.
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post #13 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-15-2015, 02:41 PM
 
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Re: Pickup configs (HSH, HSS, HxS etc)

This is an interesting subject, and something myself and another member have been messing with lately. I prefer 3 hums in an H-S-S configuration. Only being part way through my testing I can't say which single sized hums are best for what purpose, but what I have figured out is that you really have to know exactly what you want out of any certain position on any particular guitar. These single sized hums are not very good multi-taskers.

The single sized hums I've worked with so far are:
Air Norton-S
Pro Track
Tone Zone-S
Virtual Solo

Pups I have-waiting to be tested:
Cruiser neck
Injector neck
Fast track2
EMG-SA
EMG-SV
SD JB jr.

To qualify, I'm using several H-S-S RG's- all wired with a 5-way blade
1-bridge full
2-bridge and middle full
3-middle full
4-neck and middle full
5-neck full

I'm using a 250k(L) tone with .047mfd cap, a 500k(A) vol, and a DPDT mini-switch set to split the middle and neck hums.
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post #14 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-15-2015, 04:15 PM
 
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Re: Pickup configs (HSH, HSS, HxS etc)

Quote:
Originally Posted by RGTFanatic View Post
This is an interesting subject, and something myself and another member have been messing with lately. I prefer 3 hums in an H-S-S configuration. Only being part way through my testing I can't say which single sized hums are best for what purpose, but what I have figured out is that you really have to know exactly what you want out of any certain position on any particular guitar. These single sized hums are not very good multi-taskers.

The single sized hums I've worked with so far are:
Air Norton-S
Pro Track
Tone Zone-S
Virtual Solo

snip..
That's too bad about them not being multi-taskers.

I know I could coil split or reverse phase a humbucker and still use tones and that's what I like about the full sized humbuckers.

I do like how the Cruiser (bridge model in neck) sounds like a full sized humbucker in this video below, but wondering if I could multi-task it into reverse phase sounds when added to another pickup, too. I know of so many full sized humbucker mods but I have never heard of a single spaced, dual blade humbucker as being used other than just by itself for some reason. Two, stacked single spaced humbuckers together is fine on the ones I have seen with pole pieces, but I never hear anybody combine a blade and full sized humbucker, or two blades. Since it's not something I have owned in that layout I don't know why I don't see people use those.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-o4T6RKOLZo

I like these sounds, but of course this dude is a really solid guitarist of the type who makes anything sound great. I may swap out passive EMGs and put in an AT humbucker in bridge and Cruiser bridge for neck position.

Last edited by 63Blazer; 01-15-2015 at 04:27 PM.
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post #15 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-16-2015, 07:03 AM
 
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Re: Pickup configs (HSH, HSS, HxS etc)

All I really need is a bridge humbucker. Anything near the neck/fretboard bothers me big time. That's why I prefer guitars with 1 hum only.
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