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Unread 08-11-2010, 02:53 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Lightbulb 3 Pickup Les Paul - EMG's?

This is my first post, so happy to find a place to collaborate on my LP's.

I was fortunate enough to recently receive a gorgeous 3 pickup Les Paul Black Beauty as a gift (yah! because I could never afford it) ; but I still play my custom Strat for everything with a Airzone DP192 bridge pickup (passive) because it's a lot hotter. Gives me that David Gilmour vibe, big time.... I've found when I get into it and love my tone, then my playing improves drastically

Already have 2 wonderful tube amps, so this isn't my problem. I have both a 30w Jaguar "Retro" combo boutique amp and the 60w Fender Supersonic 112 Combo. I use a BOSS GT-6 board for most of my tones with a ValveFX OD-2 with overdrive off on the GT-6 for a 'tube distortion' sound, and have separate modes (of course) on the GT for both my LP and the Fender.

My question is, with this 3 Pickup Les Paul - what pickup combination would give me both the Floyd overdrive lead sound I am looking for, a dark-ish rhythm mode (because the Supersonic leans towards treble) , and that warm / glassy clean? Was thinking about the EMG pickups, and that 81TW active dual mode PU that allows you to go single coil. Then again, I know I can do this with pretty much any humbucker....

Thanks for your help!!
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Unread 08-11-2010, 07:43 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Re: 3 Pickup Les Paul - EMG's?

I emailed EMG; and here was their very helpful and quick response:

"Sounds like the 85 (neck) 60 (middle) and 81 (bridge) would give you
everything you're looking for. All of your high output lead stuff
through the 81, thick rhythm crunch with the 60, and a nice warm clean
tone from the 85! Our tech dept. should have no trouble helping you get
that wired up, I'd contact us as soon as you are ready to begin the
install. Unfortunately the gold caps are not sold separately, you'd
need to order the gold version of each pickup.

One other option to consider, especially if you are going for that
"magical" setup... Swap the 85 in the neck for an 89, and the 81 for an
81TW. You would have separate push/pulls for each that would allow you
to switch from humbucking mode to single coil. So not only could you
get a H/H/H setup, but S/H/S, H/H/S and S/H/H. It would be like have 5
pickups in your Paul! The wiring could get pretty hairy, but it can be
done. I think it add some interesting flexibility when your in the
middle position with all three on. "
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Unread 08-13-2010, 11:53 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Exclamation Re: 3 Pickup Les Paul - EMG's?

The file size restrictions on this forum kinda suck, so here's a link to the PDF for wiring a 3 Pickup Les Paul with EMG.

http://www.radioactiverooster.com/files/3puplp.pdf


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Unread 08-14-2010, 10:16 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Re: 3 Pickup Les Paul - EMG's?

This is for a Strat, not a Les Paul but the idea is a bit the same. One of my Strats is outfitted with a 81TW, 89, 89R as pickups. The reason for the R is the different coil that is active as single coil. You might be interested in that as well.

On my Les Paul I have 85/60 combo, while other humbucker guitars are some sort of 81/85 combination (either in X variant or not).
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Unread 08-17-2010, 08:06 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Re: 3 Pickup Les Paul - EMG's?

Quote:
Originally Posted by capthook View Post
I emailed EMG; and here was their very helpful and quick response:

"Sounds like the 85 (neck) 60 (middle) and 81 (bridge) would give you
everything you're looking for. All of your high output lead stuff
through the 81, thick rhythm crunch with the 60, and a nice warm clean
tone from the 85! Our tech dept. should have no trouble helping you get
that wired up, I'd contact us as soon as you are ready to begin the
install. Unfortunately the gold caps are not sold separately, you'd
need to order the gold version of each pickup.

One other option to consider, especially if you are going for that
"magical" setup... Swap the 85 in the neck for an 89, and the 81 for an
81TW. You would have separate push/pulls for each that would allow you
to switch from humbucking mode to single coil. So not only could you
get a H/H/H setup, but S/H/S, H/H/S and S/H/H. It would be like have 5
pickups in your Paul! The wiring could get pretty hairy, but it can be
done. I think it add some interesting flexibility when your in the
middle position with all three on. "
I like the idea of the 85 (neck) 60 (middle) and 81 (bridge) combination. Let us know what you do.
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Unread 08-18-2010, 12:41 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Re: 3 Pickup Les Paul - EMG's?

EMGs might be a bit too hot for what you're trying to do there. Try messing with your pickup heights first, but it that doesn't work I'd suggest trying a P-94 in the bridge for that variety you're looking for, or possibly getting some slightly hotter humbuckers. It might also just be that your two amps are better suited for strats....
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