I'm just curious to know how many of you out there actually toggle between pickups when you're playing. And if you do, for what sounds or styles do you switch between pickups to get your desired sound? Like me....I have an H-H configuration with a 5 way toggle and I use my bridge pickup for my primary distortion and lead tones for metal, rock, etc., my neck pickup for most soloing, sweeping or any type of warm or ballad type tones. I use positions 2 and 4 of the switch for Strat-like blues tones such as Stevie Ray Vaughan or Los Lonely Boys, and for cleans I mostly use the middle position or I'll use positions 2 and 4 for a brighter clean tone.
Sorry if this has already been posted but I tried looking and didn't find anything. So I'm just curious.....how do you guys incorporate your toggle switch into your playing?

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With my current amp, I basically have to use the bridge p-up on my Squier Tele, or else it gets too muddy, but I'm getting a Blues Deluxe tomorrow, and I'll definitely be using my neck p-up a lot to try to emulate that SRV/John Mayer blues strat tone.
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i only switch dependent on the sound i want or if i'm using distortion, if i'm using distorion i use the bridge, if i play clean i use either the neck or both.
I switch all the time.

When playing a piece, I'll try about 45 seconds of it on each pickup config. (I have a H/S/S setup) To see what sounds best.
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exactly like you do...except sometimes I'll roll the volume completely down on the neck and strike a vicious bend with the bridge and toggle for that sweet effect...I'm sure it's horrible for the pots but I haven't had any problems....yet
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i switch pickups on my LP about 3-5 times per song (depending on the song)
this is mostly due to the fact that i have a combo amp, and no foot switch
if you toggle to a low tone low volume it reduces deistortion.
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Depends entirely on the song? But generally, I have no set standards for pickup use, I don't have one position I always uses for solos, one always for clean, etc. I use everything pretty much evenly. The only thing I never use is on Strats, the second position (bridge + middle together). That is the only pickup selection on any guitar that I have never found a use for.
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to MrFlibble yeah thats what I do too thats what I meant but what I posted above is usually what I start off with and then I work from there. Thats actually what I meant. sorry for the confusion.

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I use them all quite often really. It all depends on the tone I want. There have been times where I've used the bridge for palm mutes and 'chugga chugga', but I've also used the neck for the same.
Whichever setting is most appropriate in the current musical context.. i do tend to switch from the bridge to neck when playing leads to smooth it out, but not always as it can be a bit of a hassle unless you have time to change
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I change selections fairly often..
on my strat, I use almost all the pickup combinations (I've got 3 on/off switches, instead of a 5-way), for different sounds.
on my dinky (H-H), I use mostly bridge, or bridge+neck.. the neck still gets used on its own, just not as often. and I find I switch more mid-song when I'm using my dinky, than on my strat

soo.. i pretty much use all the positions, I guess I switch fairly often
i almost never use the middle pick up on my strat, just the neck and bridge
No set standards, it really depends what I feel like using.
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i usually keep my amp tone pretty warm, and then use a boost pedal for solos. so because of that, i use my bridge pickup for mostly everything, neck pickup for most cleans and tapping, smooth shreds (although i cant really shred yet).
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I like the bridge tone better than the neck tone, yet i must admit that i use the neck pups alot, specially when im into arpeggios and sweeps
For me, it's

Middle + Bridge = Rhythm distortion
Bridge = Overdrive
Neck = Light overdrive
Neck + Middle = Warm cleans + Lead distortion
Neck = Harsh cleans

If that makes any sense.
switch all the time. usually have them at different volumes as well.
when i'm centered (bridge and neck), i have the neck volume and tone rolled off
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All the time, I usually keep my neck pickup ready for solos and my bridge for rhythem, but i switch all the time, I'm going to need some new pup selectors soon.
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Last edited by DSOTM80 at Oct 16, 2009,
Quote by MrFlibble
The only thing I never use is on Strats, the second position (bridge + middle together). That is the only pickup selection on any guitar that I have never found a use for.

I used to not use it, but recently it's been my favourite position.

I just use whatever I feel like at any time.

Although when playing live with a band, I tend to use either the middle or the bridge pickup for leads, because the extra treble helps to cut through the mix and be audible.

Also, recently I've been liking all 3 of my pickups at once for a mellow clean sound.
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Last edited by monkey_dancer at Oct 16, 2009,
If I have my octave pedal on I like being at the neck with the tone rolled off a bit; it adds even more bass, same goes if I'm using fuzz. For blues leads I use the neck with the tone rolled completely down; I get a great "woman" tone that way. If I'm playing rock I only ever use the bridge pickup even if I'm playing rhythm, it's just how I get my sound I guess. I use the middle position for cleans, you get a great balance of sounds that way.
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Last edited by Yerjam at Oct 16, 2009,
I toggle the pickup selection a lot while I'm playing, Doesn't matter which guitar it is. Why? Well, They have distinct sounds and the neck pickup is usually louder than the bridge pickup even if it is adjusted lower.
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Last edited by Gargoyle2500 at Oct 16, 2009,
I use it like that:

Neck + Bridge = "normal" clean tone, slower solos
Neck = almost the same as for Neck + Bridge
Bridge = I mainly use it for OD, also for twangy cleans
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It depends on the tone im going for in the given parts.

In my main guitar I have two humbuckers, split coil mode, reverse phase mode, or normal, and a three way switch to to chose which pickups are on. The positions are for bridge, neck or both.

For most of my distortions as I like a tight tone, I use the bridge pickup, in humbucker mode. For clean leads I like to use the neck pickup in humbucker mode, or both pickups. For clean strumming, I use the neck pickup in split coil mode (kinda like single coil pickup sound). If I want more of a squaky sound for like reggae and such, I turn on the reverse phase switch on top of that. Another type of interesting tone, is rolling down the volume while on the neck pickup for a creamy dirty sound.
I only have an SSS strat and I really cannot decide which pickup config I like the most

with high gain the bridge has a decent crunch for a single coil and a strat, but I LOVE the tone of the neck and middle pups as well as the gain, just has more 'pop' im not sure how to describe it.

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