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Thread: pickup mounting

  1. #1
    Senior Member gush's Avatar
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    pickup mounting

    Does it make any tonal difference if pickup is mounted to pickup ring or the body wood itself? I have always wondered that?

  2. #2
    DGT Club Vice President
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    Eddie Van Halen thinks so.
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  3. #3
    Senior Member garrett's Avatar
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    Some people claim so, but I'm not one of them.
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  4. #4
    Occasionally Onery Member CantankerousCarl's Avatar
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    I gotta figure that, if we're down to removing plating off of tuners and inserting tiny pieces of brass into bridges, that if it made that much of a difference, we'd have seen it on some PRS models by now.

    Have there been any, PS included? Haven't seen one but not sure...
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  5. #5
    Still a Junior Member Albrecht Smuten's Avatar
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    I used to wonder why to bother with the wood itself, when the sound goes from the string to the pickup directly. So if the wood matters, the nut matters, the bridge matters, the pickup mounting must matter too, I guess...
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  6. #6
    Just a member JustRob's Avatar
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    It may, but how many people having hearing sensitive enough to tell?

  7. #7
    Senior Member jimistephen's Avatar
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    There's a lot of people that say once it's plugged in the wood doesn't matter either...I'm not one of them but they're out there. I would saw that direct mounted vs. pickup ring doesn't matter though and pickup rings just look better sometimes.

  8. #8
    Senior Member Michael B's Avatar
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    Dave Weiners 7 string PS has the pups mounted to the body...
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  9. #9
    Senior Member clcwarlock's Avatar
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    This same kind of discussion comes up with amps. Hand wired versus printed circuit. It's seems like there should be no difference right, wrong. On the surface it appears there is no difference but many guitars players have claimed that the same amp with printed circuit didn't feel or respond the same. Upon further technical evaluation digging deeper there are explanations for why they sound different. Slew rate caused by the difference in the wiring resistance. There was a great article on this in the guitar amp bible about. As for pickups directly mounted I think there will be a time Paul will do this on more modern guitars like custom 24 Floyd if only for the style of how they look.

  10. #10
    P-90s are mounted directly to the body, (or top in the case of a hollow body), though they often have shims to adjust the height.

    Though in the case of humbuckers with ring-mounted pickups, the thigh bone is connected to the knee bone...
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  11. #11
    Senior Member andy474x's Avatar
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    I've pondered this before as well... my not-so-educated guess is that it all boils down to the string vibration being the only thing a pickup can detect. Since the pickups are only sensitive to disruption of the magnetic field, it doesn't really matter how they're mounted. If you've heard any of Paul's talks on guitar physics, his theory on trying to approach 6-in-6-out, the goal is keeping the "system" from taking away from the energy of the strings. In the guitar, the nut, bridge, wood, everything is trying to preserve and sustain the energy of the string vibration. But pickups don't detect vibration of the guitar itself, nothing in the guitar aside from the strings can change the magnetic field. Vibrate an unstrung guitar or pickup while it's plugged in, I doubt you'd hear much of anything, at least you shouldn't if it's a good one! The only thing a pickup can report is what the string above it is doing, the magic in the guitar tone is keeping that string dancing.

    And now, I'll crack a beer and wait for someone that knows a lot more to prove me wrong. I'm keeping one hand ready for the facepalm...
    -I'm no expert, but it seems to work and I haven't electrocuted myself yet. Which is pretty much the standard I live by.

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  12. #12
    Senior Member gush's Avatar
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    What about when you tap on your pickup? That produces a sound. I can't crack open a beer for another 8 hours though!

  13. #13
    Junior Member Ian's Avatar
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    Not sure....but the pick-up works by the string vibrating through the pick-up's magnetic field not by vibrations induced from the body...I'm sure PRSh has an opinion on this.
    oops, didn't read the reply from andy474x.
    Ian
    Last edited by Ian; 01-08-2014 at 08:17 AM.
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