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Oliver Phillips
Oliver Phillips

The Guitar Pickup Handbook: Discover the Secrets of the Source of Your Sound



Table 1: Outline of the article Heading Subheading Content --- --- --- H1: The Guitar Pickup Handbook PDF: A Comprehensive Guide for Electric Guitarists Introduction: What is the book about, who is the author, why is it useful for guitarists H2: What are guitar pickups and how do they work? Explain the basic principles of guitar pickups, how they capture the vibrations of the strings and convert them into electrical signals H3: The history of guitar pickups H4: The early inventions Discuss the origins of guitar pickups in the early 20th century, the pioneers like George Beauchamp and Adolph Rickenbacker, and the first commercial models like the Frying Pan and the Electro Spanish H4: The golden age of guitar pickups Discuss the innovations and developments of guitar pickups in the 1950s and 1960s, the iconic models like the P-90, the single-coil, the humbucker, and the Telecaster and Stratocaster pickups H4: The modern era of guitar pickups Discuss the trends and challenges of guitar pickups in the 1970s and beyond, the emergence of new genres and styles, the diversity of pickup types and designs, and the influence of digital technology H2: How to choose the right guitar pickups for your sound? Explain the factors that affect the tone and response of guitar pickups, such as magnet type, wire gauge, coil shape, number of turns, polarity, phase, output level, etc. H3: The different types of guitar pickups H4: Single-coil pickups Describe the characteristics and advantages of single-coil pickups, such as clarity, brightness, dynamics, and versatility H4: Humbucker pickups Describe the characteristics and advantages of humbucker pickups, such as warmth, richness, power, and noise cancellation H4: P-90 pickups Describe the characteristics and advantages of P-90 pickups, such as punchiness, grittiness, midrange focus, and vintage vibe H4: Other types of pickups Describe some other types of pickups that are less common but still worth mentioning, such as active pickups, piezo pickups, acoustic pickups, etc. H2: How to install and adjust your guitar pickups? Explain the basic steps and tools required for installing and adjusting your guitar pickups, such as soldering iron, wire cutter, screwdriver, etc. H3: How to install your guitar pickups? H4: Preparing your guitar Discuss how to prepare your guitar for pickup installation, such as removing the strings, unscrewing the pickguard or cover plate, disconnecting the old pickups, etc. H4: Wiring your new pickups Discuss how to wire your new pickups according to your desired configuration and wiring diagram, such as series or parallel wiring, coil splitting or tapping, phase switching, etc. Table 2: The article with HTML formatting ```html The Guitar Pickup Handbook PDF: A Comprehensive Guide for Electric Guitarists




If you are an electric guitarist, you probably know how important your guitar pickups are for shaping your sound. But do you know how they work, how they evolved, and how to choose the best ones for your style and genre? If not, you might want to check out The Guitar Pickup Handbook, a book by Dave Hunter that covers everything you need to know about guitar pickups.




the guitar pickup handbook PDF


Download File: https://www.google.com/url?q=https%3A%2F%2Fmiimms.com%2F2ubOXq&sa=D&sntz=1&usg=AOvVaw29FJ9rEVKwEuf9f3mrotdA



In this book, you will learn about the history of guitar pickups, from their early inventions in the 1920s to their modern variations and innovations. You will also learn about the different types of guitar pickups, such as single-coil, humbucker, P-90, and more, and how they differ in tone and response. You will also learn how to install and adjust your guitar pickups, and how to customize your wiring and configuration to achieve your desired sound.


Whether you are a beginner or a seasoned player, The Guitar Pickup Handbook will help you understand what makes your guitar pickups sound the way they do, and how to make them sound even better. In this article, we will give you a brief overview of the book and its main topics. Let's get started!


What are guitar pickups and how do they work?




Guitar pickups are devices that capture the vibrations of the guitar strings and convert them into electrical signals that can be amplified and processed by an amplifier or a pedal. They are essentially transducers that transform mechanical energy into electrical energy.


Guitar pickups consist of two main components: a magnet and a coil of wire. The magnet creates a magnetic field that surrounds the strings. When the strings vibrate, they disturb the magnetic field and induce a voltage in the coil of wire. The voltage is proportional to the strength and frequency of the vibration, which corresponds to the pitch and volume of the sound.


The electrical signal from the pickup is then sent to a volume or tone control, and then to an output jack that connects to an amplifier or a pedal. The amplifier or pedal can then modify the signal by adding effects such as distortion, reverb, delay, etc. The final sound is then produced by a speaker or a headphone.


The history of guitar pickups




The early inventions




The first guitar pickups were invented in the 1920s and 1930s, when electric guitars were still a novelty. The pioneers of guitar pickups were George Beauchamp and Adolph Rickenbacker, who founded the Rickenbacker company in 1931. They developed the first commercially successful electric guitar, called the Frying Pan, which had a horseshoe-shaped pickup that surrounded the strings.


Another early inventor of guitar pickups was Lloyd Loar, who worked for Gibson and designed the first electric mandolin in 1924. He also created one of the first electric guitars, called the Vivi-Tone, which had an electromagnetic pickup that was mounted under the strings.


Other early examples of electric guitars with pickups were the Electro Spanish by Ro-Pat-In (later renamed Rickenbacker), which had a single-coil pickup with six individual pole pieces; the ES-150 by Gibson, which had a single-coil pickup with a metal cover plate; and the Model B by National-Dobro, which had a single-coil pickup with a metal resonator cone.


The golden age of guitar pickups




The 1950s and 1960s were considered the golden age of guitar pickups, as many innovations and developments occurred during this period. Some of the most iconic models of guitar pickups were created in this era, such as:


  • The P-90 by Gibson: This was one of the first single-coil pickups that had a wide and flat coil of wire with two bar magnets underneath. It had a distinctive sound that was punchy, gritty, and midrange-focused. It was used by many famous guitarists such as Les Paul, John Lennon, Keith Richards, Carlos Santana, etc.



  • The single-coil by Fender: This was another single-coil pickup that had a narrow and tall coil of wire with six individual alnico rod magnets. It had a bright, clear, and dynamic sound that was ideal for country, blues, rock, and surf music. It was used by many famous guitarists such as Buddy Holly, Jimi Hendrix, Eric Clapton, David Gilmour, etc.



  • The humbucker by Gibson: This was the first pickup that used two coils of wire that were wired in series and out of phase, which canceled the hum and noise that plagued single-coil pickups. It had a warm, rich, and powerful sound that was suitable for jazz, blues, rock, and metal music. It was used by many famous guitarists such as Chuck Berry, B.B. King, Jimmy Page, Slash, etc.



  • The Telecaster and Stratocaster pickups by Fender: These were variations of the single-coil pickup that had different shapes, sizes, and positions on the guitar. The Telecaster pickup had a metal base plate that added brightness and twang to the sound. The Stratocaster pickup had a staggered pole piece arrangement that balanced the output of the strings. Both pickups had a three-way switch that allowed the player to select different combinations of pickups for different sounds.



The modern era of guitar pickups




The 1970s and beyond saw the emergence of new genres and styles of music that demanded new sounds and capabilities from guitar pickups. Some of the trends and challenges of guitar pickups in this era were:


  • The diversity of pickup types and designs: As guitarists experimented with different sounds and effects, they also explored different types of pickups, such as active pickups, piezo pickups, acoustic pickups, etc. Active pickups used a battery-powered preamp to boost the signal and reduce noise. Piezo pickups used a piezoelectric material to sense the vibrations of the strings or the body. Acoustic pickups used a microphone or a transducer to capture the sound of an acoustic guitar.



  • The influence of digital technology: As digital technology became more advanced and accessible, it also affected the way guitar pickups were designed and used. Digital modeling allowed guitarists to emulate the sounds of different types of pickups without changing them physically. Digital processing allowed guitarists to modify the sounds of their pickups with various effects and parameters. Digital recording allowed guitarists to capture and edit their sounds with more precision and flexibility.



How to choose the right guitar pickups for your sound?




Choosing the right guitar pickups for your sound can be a daunting task, as there are many factors that affect the tone and response of your pickups. Some of these factors are:


  • Magnet type: The type of magnet used in your pickup can have a significant impact on your sound. The most common types of magnets are alnico and ceramic. Alnico magnets are made of an alloy of aluminum, nickel, and cobalt, and have a warm and vintage tone. Ceramic magnets are made of ferrite or iron oxide, and have a bright and modern tone.



  • Wire gauge: The gauge or thickness of the wire used in your pickup coil can also affect your sound. The thicker the wire, the lower the resistance and output level of your pickup. The thinner the wire, the higher the resistance and output level of your pickup.



  • Coil shape: The shape or geometry of your pickup coil can also affect your sound. The wider and flatter your coil, the more bass and midrange you will get. The narrower and taller your coil, the more treble you will get.



  • Number of turns: The number of turns or windings of your pickup coil can also affect your sound. The more turns you have, the higher the output level and inductance of your pickup. The less turns you have, the lower the output level and inductance of your pickup.



  • Polarity: The polarity or direction of your pickup magnet can also affect your sound. If you have two pickups with opposite polarity, they will cancel each other's hum and noise when combined. If you have two pickups with same polarity, they will add each other's hum and noise when combined.



  • Phase: The phase or alignment of your pickup coils can also affect your sound. If you have two coils that are in phase, they will add each other's signals when combined. If you have two coils that are out of phase, they will subtract each other's signals when combined.



  • Output level: The output level or strength of your pickup signal can also affect your sound. The higher the output level, the more distortion and compression you will get from your amp or pedal. The lower the output level, the more clarity and dynamics you will get from your amp or pedal.



The different types of guitar pickups




Single-coil pickups




Single-coil pickups are the simplest and most common type of guitar pickups. They consist of a single coil of wire wrapped around a magnet or a set of magnets. They have a clear, bright, and dynamic sound that is ideal for country, blues, rock, and surf music. However, they also have a drawback: they are susceptible to hum and noise from electrical interference.


Some examples of single-coil pickups are:


  • The Fender single-coil: This is the classic single-coil pickup that is used on Fender guitars such as the Telecaster and the Stratocaster. It has a narrow and tall coil of wire with six individual alnico rod magnets. It has a bright, clear, and dynamic sound that is versatile and expressive.



  • The P-90: This is a single-coil pickup that was developed by Gibson in the late 1940s. It has a wide and flat coil of wire with two bar magnets underneath. It has a punchy, gritty, and midrange-focused sound that is great for blues, rock, and punk music.



  • The lipstick tube: This is a single-coil pickup that was used on Danelectro guitars in the 1950s and 1960s. It has a narrow and tall coil of wire that is housed in a metal tube that resembles a lipstick. It has a twangy, jangly, and vintage sound that is perfect for surf and rockabilly music.



Humbucker pickups




Humbucker pickups are the most popular type of guitar pickups for electric guitars. They consist of two coils of wire that are wired in series and out of phase, which cancels the hum and noise that single-coil pickups produce. They have a warm, rich, and powerful sound that is suitable for jazz, blues, rock, and metal music.


Some examples of humbucker pickups are:


  • The Gibson humbucker: This is the original humbucker pickup that was invented by Seth Lover in 1955. It has two coils of wire with four alnico bar magnets underneath. It has a warm, rich, and powerful sound that is smooth and creamy.



  • The DiMarzio Super Distortion: This is one of the first high-output humbucker pickups that was designed by Larry DiMarzio in 1972. It has two coils of wire with four ceramic bar magnets underneath. It has a bright, aggressive, and distorted sound that is ideal for hard rock and metal music.



  • The Seymour Duncan JB: This is one of the most popular humbucker pickups that was designed by Seymour Duncan in 1976. It has two coils of wire with four alnico bar magnets underneath. It has a balanced, versatile, and dynamic sound that can handle any genre and style.



P-90 pickups




P-90 pickups are a type of single-coil pickups that have a unique sound and appearance. They have a wide and flat coil of wire with two bar magnets underneath, but they are larger and more rectangular than regular single-coil pickups. They have a punchy, gritty, and midrange-focused sound that is great for blues, rock, and punk music.


Some examples of P-90 pickups are:


  • The Gibson P-90: This is the original P-90 pickup that was introduced by Gibson in 1946. It has a wide and flat coil of wire with two alnico bar magnets underneath. It has a punchy, gritty, and midrange-focused sound that is vintage and raw.



  • The Lollar P-90: This is a modern P-90 pickup that was designed by Jason Lollar in 1995. It has a wide and flat coil of wire with two alnico bar magnets underneath. It has a punchy, gritty, and midrange-focused sound that is refined and articulate.



  • The Fralin P-90: This is another modern P-90 pickup that was designed by Lindy Fralin in 1998. It has a wide and flat coil of wire with two alnico bar magnets underneath. It has a punchy, gritty, and midrange-focused sound that is smooth and clear.



Other types of pickups




There are also some other types of pickups that are less common but still worth mentioning, such as:


  • Active pickups: These are pickups that use a battery-powered preamp to boost the signal and reduce noise. They have a high output level and a low impedance, which means they can drive long cables and complex effects without losing signal quality. They have a clean, crisp, and consistent sound that is great for metal and modern music.



  • Piezo pickups: These are pickups that use a piezoelectric material to sense the vibrations of the strings or the body. They have a low output level and a high impedance, which means they need a preamp or an impedance-matching device to work properly. They have a bright, acoustic, and natural sound that is great for folk and country music.



  • Acoustic pickups: These are pickups that are designed to capture the sound of an acoustic guitar. They can be either magnetic, piezo, or microphone-based. They have a low to medium output level and a high impedance, which means they need a preamp or an impedance-matching device to work properly. They have a warm, organic, and realistic sound that is great for acoustic music.



How to install and adjust your guitar pickups?




Installing and adjusting your guitar pickups can be a fun and rewarding project, but it can also be a challenging and risky one. You need to have some basic skills and tools, such as soldering iron, wire cutter, screwdriver, etc. You also need to follow some safety precautions, such as unplugging your guitar from the amp or pedal, wearing protective gloves and goggles, etc.


Before you start installing and adjusting your guitar pickups, you need to do some research and planning. You need to find out what kind of pickups you want to install, what kind of wiring diagram you want to follow, what kind of tools and materials you need, etc. You also need to make sure that your new pickups are compatible with your guitar type, amp type, etc.


How to install your guitar pickups?




Preparing your guitar




The first step of installing your guitar pickups is to prepare your guitar for the process. You need to do the following:


  • Remove the strings: You need to remove the strings from your guitar so that you can access the pickups and the wiring. You can either cut them off with a wire cutter or loosen them with a tuner and take them off carefully.



  • Unscrew the pickguard or cover plate: You need to unscrew the pickguard or cover plate from your guitar so that you can access the pickups and the wiring. You need to use a screwdriver that matches the size and shape of the screws. You also need to keep track of the screws and their positions so that you can put them back later.



  • Disconnect the old pickups: You need to disconnect the old pickups from the wiring so that you can remove them from the guitar. You need to use a soldering iron to melt the solder joints that connect the pickup wires to the volume or tone control or the output jack. You also need to use a wire cutter to cut off any excess wire that might get in the way.



Wiring your new pickups




The second step of installing your guitar pickups is to wire your new pickups according to your desired configuration and wiring diagram. You need to do the following:


  • Position your new pickups: You need to position your new pickups in the right place on your guitar. You need to make sure that they are aligned with the strings and the bridge, and that they are not too high or too low. You also need to make sure that they are not touching any metal parts or wires that might cause interference or short circuits.



  • Solder your new pickups: You need to solder your new pickup wires to the wiring according to your wiring diagram. You need to use a soldering iron to heat up the solder joints and attach the wires securely. You also need to use some electrical tape or heat-shrink tubing to insulate the wires and prevent them from touching each other or other metal parts.



  • Screw your new pickups: You need to screw your new pickups onto your guitar so that they are fixed in place. You need to use a screwdriver that matches the size and shape of the screws. You also need to adjust the height of the screws so that they are not too tight or too loose.



Testing your new pickups




The third step of installing your guitar pickups i


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