#1
I've always been curious how it is that different pickups achieve different tonal properties. I'm a little interested in the physics behind it if anyone is knowledgeable on the topic.

I understand the basics of how they work, with the disruption of the magnetic flux producing a current in the coils which is then sent to the output as an electrical signal. But I'm curious on how pickups can differ. I know more coils = higher output. How do different types of magnets effect the signal/waveform that travels through the lead though? And what else can you do to a pickup other than change the number of windings and the magnet type from ceramic to Alnico?

Hope someone can educate me here , just being inquisitive.

Will
#2
Get a copy of "Guitar Electronics for Musicians" by Brosnac, it's got a solid section on pickups.
“Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge.”
Charles Darwin
#3
I think it primarly depends on three things - what kind of magnets you use (alnico, ceramic...), how you arrange them (strat vs tele vs whatever else), and how the winding is made (more or less turns of the wire).
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#5
Little tiny trolls power humbuckers, tiny pixies run P90s and fairies do single coils. Anything else?
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#7
You lot are so helpful hahaha. Any of you that aren't listed on the 'who to listen to' thread should be added, immegdiately! However that link to the SD website looks helpful, I guess it's a place to start. Thanks Fatal.
#8
Quote by wildozer
You lot are so helpful hahaha. Any of you that aren't listed on the 'who to listen to' thread should be added, immegdiately! However that link to the SD website looks helpful, I guess it's a place to start. Thanks Fatal.


Your question wasn't one that could reasonably be answered in a paragraph, so I gave you a competent text that would provide you with the knowledge you requested. What, exactly, were you expecting?
“Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge.”
Charles Darwin
#9
^Dude, I think he meant it as a compliment.
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#10
Basically, resistance, capacitance and inductance. Those three elements form a resonant circuit, which is relatively flat up to a certain frequency, at which point there's a large spike, and after which there's a large drop off in frequency response. The width of the spike and its position in the frequency spectrum is determined by the combination of those three elements.

DC resistance is a function of the gauge of wire, material of the wire, and overall length (number of turns around the bobbin). It increases with more winds, thinner wire and can increase/decrease with different materials. Capacitance is due to the parallel areas of the conductor, the distance between plates, and the dielectric constant of the insulation of the wire, which also increases as the number of turns increases, and varies (by a multiplier) depending on the dielectric constant. Inductance is a more complex variable, but it generally increases with more turns.

The magnet is often though to be important, but it doesn't really do anything but increase/decrease output. More turns of the same wire also increases output. For more info, look up Faraday's Law of Induction.

Of note, the capacitance of your cable also adds to the intercoil capacitance, and can shift your resonant point as well.
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#11
Quote by FatalGear41
^Dude, I think he meant it as a compliment.


I don't. The "however" tends to change the context...
“Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge.”
Charles Darwin
#12
Apologies for any misunderstanding Arby. It was said in a joking manner and it was not directed at your post which was in fact helpful.

Thanks to everyone for the information though, it's given me a place to start reading up
#14
Its been a while since i have read the articles, but (iirc) Aiken amplification (if that's the right) has a good field of tech articles.
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nope i am "GOD of the guitar forum" i think that fits me better.


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youre just being a jerk man.



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#15
Quote by trashedlostfdup
Its been a while since i have read the articles, but (iirc) Aiken amplification (if that's the right) has a good field of tech articles.

This site is an excellent read. Thanks
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#16
Quote by lucky1978
This site is an excellent read. Thanks


If my old computer didn't die, i had at least 10 equally accurate information. Aiken was first to pop in my head. Suhr may have some as well.
WTLT 2014 GG&A

Quote by andersondb7
alright "king of the guitar forum"


Quote by trashedlostfdup
nope i am "GOD of the guitar forum" i think that fits me better.


Quote by andersondb7
youre just being a jerk man.



****** NEW NEW NEW!
2017-07-07 2017-07-07 Update and a Chat On Noise Constraints *** NEW FRIDAY 7/7
2017-04-13 RUN AWAY from COMPUTERS!!! TCE? RANT ALERT!!!
2017-03-02 - Guitar Philosophy 1001- Be Prepared For the Situation (Thursday 2017-03-02)
2017-02-21 How to Hot-Rod the Hell of your Stratocaster for $50! (Tuesday 2017-2-21)
Resentments and Rambling from a Guitar Junkie
---> http://trashedengineering.blogspot.com/
#17
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Don't worry TS, Arby is just sad that he doesn't have a POD.


“Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge.”
Charles Darwin