I've learned that amps make up like 80% of a person's tone, but pickups seem to be important too. I tried to find a sticky or thread that explained it, but I couldn't really find one. I tried google searching it, and I couldn't find an answer. So can anyone explain to me how pickups really affect the tone of a guitar, or direct me to a thread that does explain it?
Edit: Maybe an example will help. If I changed the stock humbuckers on my guitar to some brand of decent Seymour Duncan pickups or something, can anyone explain what difference that will make?
Last edited by The_Shape at Jan 17, 2009,
There are reverse wound that cancel humming, P90's with fat tone, single coils that shimmer, humbuckers that cancel hum and have that chugga chugga sound, rails that make your ears bleed, splittable humbuckers into single coils for diversity, hotness of the pickups make a big difference, magnets used make a even bigger difference...
the big problem with putting any percentages on how much anything will change the tone is that (a) they're made up and (b) they vary depending on every bit of the signal chain. if you already have a crappy amp, upgrading to a better amp (or changing to a completely different style of amp, say from a mesa recto to a fender twin) is probably the biggest single change you can make to your sound. however, the better the amp, the more it'll highlight things like pickup changes, hardware changes, different woods, etc. etc. etc., so nothing is really black and white. two guitars which you thought sounded remarkably similar when you had a line 6 spider III might turn out to sound completely different if you upgraded to a soldano, say.

depends on what your stock pickups are like, too, and what type of tone you're after, etc. etc.
I'm an idiot and I accidentally clicked the "Remove all subscriptions" button. If it seems like I'm ignoring you, I'm not, I'm just no longer subscribed to the thread. If you quote me or do the @user thing at me, hopefully it'll notify me through my notifications and I'll get back to you.
Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
active pickups r much more powerful. They got waaay more sustain and r more sensetive