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Author Topic: Observations about Setting the Height of Neck Humbuckers  (Read 1716 times)


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Observations about Setting the Height of Neck Humbuckers
« on: January 31, 2013, 02:49:14 PM »
For years I had a problem of muddy sounding bass strings on almost any neck humbucker. Took a while to find out that I set them to a less than optimal point.

As most of you will be aware the bass stings have more energy and are therefore more prone to mud. In addition, the further the pickup is away from the bridge, the more bass you are going to get. The intuitive solution is to slant the pickup in the ring, i.e. setting the bass side lower than the treble side. However, this tends to decrease the harmonics which give the low strings definition.

The solution: make advantage of the fact that you can adjust the screw pole pieces for tone, too (not only to balance the individual strings). Try setting the screws on the bass side lower (e.g. a half turn) and then bring the whole pickup up on the bass side by the same amount. By this you effectively get the slug coil which is closer to the bridge closer to the strings which adds more definition to the bass strings. Repeat the procedure until you are happy with the result.

On the treble side you may want the exact opposite because we want all the fatness we can get for these singing leads. Well - turn the screws out by e.g. a half turn. Then back down the pickup as a whole.

This works well for bridge pickups, too.

Cheers Stephan


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Re: Observations about Setting the Height of Neck Humbuckers
« Reply #1 on: January 31, 2013, 04:10:55 PM »
I find the opposite works for me - extend the pickup screws OUT for more definition due to a weaker magnetic pull.

Each to their own I guess!


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Re: Observations about Setting the Height of Neck Humbuckers
« Reply #2 on: February 03, 2013, 03:51:51 PM »
Yeah, I'm not entirely sure I find/feel exactly the same results on closer/further either... BUT I definitely agree with using pickup height AND pole-piece heights - I find it's easy to forget one of the variables that there are for fiddling with...

(And also, when I'm in fiddling mode, I find I forget to play the damn thing :lol:)
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