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How many pickups is too many

I dunno what's going on right now, suddenly loads of peeps releasing music that I am noticing from my past, Johnny Marr this time.....how may pickups do you need LOL

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Comments

  • What do you mean by pick up in this case? Sorry, never seen that used outside of bars and guitars.

  • @Tarekith said:
    What do you mean by pick up in this case? Sorry, never seen that used outside of bars and guitars.

    Check out his guitar in the video. It’s got a bazillion pickups.

  • @royor said:

    Seems like overkill

  • well, clearly the answer is nine

  • It’s the pickup equivalent of “…but this one goes up to eleven…”

  • It looks like it has the full Brian May switching system for each pickup too.

  • But does it have piezos in the bridge saddles? 🤣

  • @xraydash said:

    @Tarekith said:
    What do you mean by pick up in this case? Sorry, never seen that used outside of bars and guitars.

    Check out his guitar in the video. It’s got a bazillion pickups.

    Doh, sorry!

  • @Fingolfinzz said:
    Seems like overkill

    Yes it does and also I want one. 🤣 On a serious note I have the Johnny Marr Jaguar and It is great.

  • “Dubbed the “Spirit Strat”, Marr also took the opportunity to respond to a fan who enquired about its unorthodox pickup pairing, revealing the nine pickups “all feed into each other” to make “one giant one”.

    One giant humbucker with nine coils, or nine single coils wired in series? That’s just one part of the puzzle – we’ve yet to even begin unpicking the 18 toggle switches littered across the pickguard.”

    https://www.guitarworld.com/news/johnny-marr-fender-spirit-strat

  • If it does have the Brian May type switching, which it looks like it does by the switch layout, then it'll be both series or parallel and in or out-of-phase for each coil.

  • People with more ‘normal’ pickup arrangements can use this to get those options. I have it on a ‘72 Telecaster Thinline clone with splittable wide range humbuckers. It makes a huge range of sounds available, especially because I can also select which side of the split to use. Move a pickup a centimeter and it changes the tone completely.

    http://www.deaf-eddie.net/pdf-files/five-tone.pdf

  • I’m curious if the guitar has ANY sustain with that many magnets pulling on the strings unless they are really weak magnets since the pickups all feed into each other as mentioned previously.

  • That’s a point. You could energise a pickup (or more than one) by not having magnets in it and instead powering it with a constant DC (thus ignoring using it as a sound pickup) polarised to repel the strings that are magnetically attracted to neighbouring sound picking-up pickups, and that would give you an ‘active’ amount of, well, if not sustain, at least counteraction of the grabbing effect of the other pickups.

  • edited September 10

    Hmm think there should be enough room to squeeze in another one…

  • I once put a Dimarzio Super Distortion humbucker in the bridge of a Strat with 2 vintage (low) output single-coils, using the stock 250K pots. The volume balance was way off (humbucker was significantly louder). Wired the 2 coils in the Super Distortion from series (stock) to parallel and out-of-phase, and the volume balance with the single-coils was much improved, and one of the best chicken pickin' sounds that I ever heard.

  • @qryss said:
    People with more ‘normal’ pickup arrangements can use this to get those options. I have it on a ‘72 Telecaster Thinline clone with splittable wide range humbuckers. It makes a huge range of sounds available, especially because I can also select which side of the split to use. Move a pickup a centimeter and it changes the tone completely.

    http://www.deaf-eddie.net/pdf-files/five-tone.pdf

    My "Tele" (it really only has a Telecaster shaped body) has a pair of Duncan P-Rails in it with a 5-way switch wired pretty much like in that article. The P-Rails can be switched as P-90, Strat rail, and the two in parallel. It's a huge tonal range. The 5-way is a great mod.

  • I need one of those SuperSwitches!
    Been eyeing the wiring in the Brent Mason Tele with its 3 pups.

  • @ocelot said:
    I need one of those SuperSwitches!
    Been eyeing the wiring in the Brent Mason Tele with its 3 pups.

    StewMac usually has several switches that'll fit Strats or Teles that have more possibilities for wiring.

    The product page for the Brent Mason seems to indicate that it has normal Tele switching for the neck and bridge and the middle is an independent volume control. That could be pretty slick as it is.

  • edited September 10

    Fender started adding series-parallel pickup switching to some of its guitar models because it's apparently a popular enough mod. Most guitars have pickups wired parallel instead of series.

    My Tele is the same model as the one demoed by John 5 here. I tried to to cue up the video to where he demos the S1 series-parallel switch, but this forum software doesn't seem to support that. The S1 demo is around 1:35.

    My American Pro II Jazzmaster also as series-parallel switching but I'm thinking of having it rewired to for in-phase/out of phase switching instead, because I don't find the series wiring that useful on the Jazzmaster compared to the Tele. The V-ModII pickups are already hot enough for my taste.

  • Thanks @NeonSilicon, StewMac is a great resource (I noticed they now sell the Wilkinson Strat/Tele kits!).

    I'd like to try 4-conductor pups with the SuperSwitch or MegaSwitch. Curious if anyone makes a 7-way switch (would like to minimize the # of toggle switches).

    I'd also like to transfer the RMC piezos + 13-pin from my Brian Moore over to a Warmoth or Wilkinson build.

    I had one of the Fender Roland VG guitars, but sold it before attempting to add the 13-pin parts.

    True, I believe the Brent Mason Tele uses 3 humbucking Duncans, with a regular 3-way Tele switch and an additional volume pot for the middle Strat pup, and a push/pull on the tone pot for the middle pup.

    @GovernorSilver The S1 switching is very cool, especially with the humbucker-equipped Strats.

    And be sure to try parallel out-of-phase if you want a good chicken pickin' tone. Though it needs some high output pups to not sound weak.

    Most guitars have pickups wired parallel instead of series.

    You mean Fender single-coils? True!
    Most humbucker-equipped guitars have the 2 coils in a single humbucker wired in series. If it's overpowering the other pups, wiring them in parallel helps a bunch.

  • edited September 10

    @ocelot said:

    Most guitars have pickups wired parallel instead of series.

    You mean Fender single-coils? True!
    Most humbucker-equipped guitars have the 2 coils in a single humbucker wired in series. If it's overpowering the other pups, wiring them in parallel helps a bunch.

    I meant pickup as a whole unit, not individual coils inside a humbucker.

    I'm chuckling right now reading this old discussion
    https://www.mylespaul.com/threads/series-parallel.91704/

    Although you do bring up a point that humbucker guitar owners might think differently than single-coil guitar owners when you bring up series-parallel switching. Something like this

    https://sixstringsupplies.co.uk/pages/les-paul-series-parallel-wiring

  • @GovernorSilver said:

    @ocelot said:

    Most guitars have pickups wired parallel instead of series.

    You mean Fender single-coils? True!
    Most humbucker-equipped guitars have the 2 coils in a single humbucker wired in series. If it's overpowering the other pups, wiring them in parallel helps a bunch.

    I meant pickup as a whole unit, not individual coils inside a humbucker.

    I'm chuckling right now reading this old discussion
    https://www.mylespaul.com/threads/series-parallel.91704/

    Although you do bring up a point that humbucker guitar owners might think differently than single-coil guitar owners when you bring up series-parallel switching. Something like this

    https://sixstringsupplies.co.uk/pages/les-paul-series-parallel-wiring

    So true, "Why's this Les Paul so dark sounding compared to my Strat?!"

    I had this gorgeous transparent white Fender/Warmoth Strat, heavy swamp ash body, baseball bat Warmoth Fatback neck, with the Fender Custom Shop Fat 50s. Dark as heck sounding. Much darker than my Fender Mahogany Strat from the early 2000s. Stock 250K pots. Switching to 500K didn't help much. Switched the pups to the Fender Custom Shop 69s - nice and bright like Strat should be. Really strange. Never figured out if the Fat 50s pups were broken, or what.

    On a Les Paul, in the middle switch position, aren't the 2 humbuckers in parallel? I forgot.

  • @ocelot said:

    @GovernorSilver said:

    @ocelot said:

    Most guitars have pickups wired parallel instead of series.

    You mean Fender single-coils? True!
    Most humbucker-equipped guitars have the 2 coils in a single humbucker wired in series. If it's overpowering the other pups, wiring them in parallel helps a bunch.

    I meant pickup as a whole unit, not individual coils inside a humbucker.

    I'm chuckling right now reading this old discussion
    https://www.mylespaul.com/threads/series-parallel.91704/

    Although you do bring up a point that humbucker guitar owners might think differently than single-coil guitar owners when you bring up series-parallel switching. Something like this

    https://sixstringsupplies.co.uk/pages/les-paul-series-parallel-wiring

    So true, "Why's this Les Paul so dark sounding compared to my Strat?!"

    I had this gorgeous transparent white Fender/Warmoth Strat, heavy swamp ash body, baseball bat Warmoth Fatback neck, with the Fender Custom Shop Fat 50s. Dark as heck sounding. Much darker than my Fender Mahogany Strat from the early 2000s. Stock 250K pots. Switching to 500K didn't help much. Switched the pups to the Fender Custom Shop 69s - nice and bright like Strat should be. Really strange. Never figured out if the Fat 50s pups were broken, or what.

    On a Les Paul, in the middle switch position, aren't the 2 humbuckers in parallel? I forgot.

    funny! I have a Parker Nitefly SSS with nearly the opposite problem - weird mix of bright tone with more bass than normal. I took it to a local shop for recommendations for replacement pickups with less highs and more mids, and the shop owner told me to forget about any typical Strat replacement pickups for it. He said I should get EMG active single coils for it, and rely more more on outboard gear for tone shaping. His reasoning was based on the Nitefly having a composite neck, stainless steel frets, and unknown body wood (possibly maple or poplar). I still haven't done anything to it, because I've since gotten other guitars, and I haven't decided on replacement pickups for it. I do like the ones that Seymour Duncan's Pickup Finder recommends - I chose "I want warmer/fatter sound" - particular the combo of two SSL5s and Little 59 in the bridge. I keep it around because I like the feel of the neck and it pairs nicely with my Roland VG-99.

    My D'Angelico semi-hollows have their 2 humbuckers in parallel when both are selected. At least that's my guess based on being able to adjust their volumes independently, and no boost in bass and overall volume like on my Tele when the S1 switch is engaged.

  • Ah, the SD Little 59 is plenty midrange heavy, in a typical Strat. I always wired its coils in parallel, instead of the usual series, for the slightly lower output, with more 'cluck'.

    I had the EMG TC (TC is ceramic; T is Alnico) set in a swamp ash, buckeye burl maple top Tele with ebony fretboard and SS frets. Could go from dark but articulate jazzy tones to piercingly bright phasers set to kill, but since they're active + low-impedance, they're very very easy to shape. Nice to be able to do direct into a mixer or audio interface without a DI box.

    My D'Angelico semi-hollows have their 2 humbuckers in parallel when both are selected. At least that's my guess based on being able to adjust their volumes independently, and no boost in bass and overall volume like on my Tele when the S1 switch is engaged.

    Nice! I've been wanting to try out the new Excel or Premier SS. Gorgeous!

  • I would be obligated to call it my ssssssss Strat.

  • @ocelot said:

    My D'Angelico semi-hollows have their 2 humbuckers in parallel when both are selected. At least that's my guess based on being able to adjust their volumes independently, and no boost in bass and overall volume like on my Tele when the S1 switch is engaged.

    Nice! I've been wanting to try out the new Excel or Premier SS. Gorgeous!

    Thanks!

    I have a Deluxe SS and an Excel Mini DC. It's fascinating how they both have Seymour Duncan 59s yet sound different from one another. The Deluxe SS with its stairstep tailpiece has a slightly woodier tone and excellent balance when I play it standing with a strap. The Mini DC is a little neck divey when I don't rest my picking forearm on the body, but I like its neck a little more and and it has little more sustain too.

    They both have coil-splitting but the Deluxe SS has a 6-way switch for that, while the Excel Mini DC has push-pull pots, which results in different tonal choices.

  • @GovernorSilver Is the SS hollow with just a block under the bridge and tailpiece, or does the center block run the full length of the body like a 335 or 339? Thanks.

    Good to know about the Mini DC's neck dive, been eyeing that one too.

    I may not be able to resist this Gretsch G2655 for $400 new.

  • @ocelot said:
    @GovernorSilver Is the SS hollow with just a block under the bridge and tailpiece, or does the center block run the full length of the body like a 335 or 339? Thanks.

    Good to know about the Mini DC's neck dive, been eyeing that one too.

    I may not be able to resist this Gretsch G2655 for $400 new.

    The Gretsch looks nice.

    I did think about returning the Mini DC to Sweetwater, but ended up keeping it, because I like its tones too much. It was a scratch-and-dent discount special anyway.

    Even when I was thinking "damn the neck wants to go down" when I first played it, I ended up playing it for hours. I work around the heavier-than-body neck a number of ways - an extra loop of the cable around the strap, close to the body-side strap pin - resting the forearm on the top of the body, resting the forearm on the side of the body, supporting the neck with the fretting hand (ok for gripping a chord while strumming repeatedly, or going for a nice bluesy bend without any intention of making a quick transition to another part of the neck)... the body is so small and light that my forearm doesn't fatigue from long contact with the body like on some of my bigger body guitars.

    The SS models with the stop tailpiece had full length center blocks. The ones with stairstep tailpieces like mine have the shorter blocks - I can look into one f-hole and see other one through it.

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