#1
Has anyone used pickups that have the option of switching between single coil and humbucking? I'm specifically looking at the new Zelinsky "Sidekick Pickups". Its such an alluring concept to have that versatility but I am pretty skeptical. Any reviews or personal thoughts are welcome. Thanks.
#2
Advertising for those pickups look absurd. They claim that it's the first pickup that taps to a true single coil, which is just totally false, so they make a lot of qualifications about "true" humbuckers and "true" single coils just for the sake of advertising. On top of that, the volume stays the same which to me means that it's not just an unmolested "vintage" Strat pickup, because they by nature would (and, IMO, should) have less output than a humbucker. So I'm not convinced by this ad copy. Maybe it sounds great, but that's not the issue here.

There are tons of pickups that can switch between humbucker and single coil. Basically any humbucker out there comes in a 4-conductor wiring which lets you split it for single coil (or parallel coils, which sounds similar but has slightly more output and less noise). Some sound better than other when split; pickups like the Lace Duallys, the Rio Grande Tallboy, and the Duncan P-Rails and Stag Mag were designed to sound good split.

I haven't tried the Zelinsky pickups but you should not assume that they are the only pickup that will give you a single coil and a humbucker in the same pickup. There are tons of other options out there that will do what the Zelinksy pickup claims to do (minus the volume matching).
#4
Quote by Daniel Whitford
Has anyone used pickups that have the option of switching between single coil and humbucking? I'm specifically looking at the new Zelinsky "Sidekick Pickups". Its such an alluring concept to have that versatility but I am pretty skeptical. Any reviews or personal thoughts are welcome. Thanks.


You SHOULD be skeptical. It's Bollshoi. Some Marketing Wonk got overzealous.

People have done humbucker/single coil switching since the late '60's.

Manufacturers have included it on guitars since the '70's

The Ibanez early '80's AR300 (which is an update of an earlier mid/late '70's Ibanez 2219) has Tri-Sound switches which allow you to select between serlal (standard humbucker), parallel (still humbucking, but a thinner sound) and single coil (non-humbucking).

Seymour Duncan produces the P-Rail pickups which have a discreet rail coil single coil and a P90 coil together in one humbucker-size pickup. You can run these with switching that will choose either coil individually or both together, either serial or parallel.