'57 Classic 4 conductor - Do they come with the harness?

jm55

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I just bought a 2016 Les Paul Standard. It plays terrific, but I'm on the fence about the pickups. Would like something unpotted and not quite as hot, or with weaker magnets.

The only option that seems to fit the bill as far as Gibson pu's go is the '57 four conductor, but I'm wondering if they come with the harness attached. This is the first Gibson I've owned with the modern controls that everything plugs in. Does the '57 come with the harness attached? If it wasn't Sunday I'd call Gibson to ask :- ) Also, do any of the aftermarket pickup makers offer their humbuckers with the harness attached?
 

cooljuk

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Gibson (at least used to) sell humbuckers with the "QuickConnect" Molex plug on them, however, it looks like Musician's Friend, Sweetwater, AMS, and Amazon all stopped carrying them. So, maybe Gibson wasn't finding much aftermarket interest in them?

At least a couple of us pickup manufacturers bought the Molex crimp tool and the various connection parts that Gibson uses and can offer aftermarket pickups with those QuickConnect plug on them. HOWEVER, even though I can do that, I recommend against it.

You're better off not painting yourself into a corner and limiting yourself to not only the few pickups you can get stock with those plugs (and making sure you only put "bridge" pickups in the bridge and "neck" pickups in the neck, because the plugs are wired differently on each) but also not limiting yourself to the factory wiring scheme, pots and caps.

Most folks who buy Les Pauls prefer the "50's style" circuit. If you're going to be swapping things out, it's generally best to swap the harness to individual components and use pots with the values, tapers, physical feel, build quality, etc. of your choice, as well as cap values, types, brands of your choice and have them connected in the preferred circuit of your choice. Then, you can use any pickups you want without having to find a quick connect version or solder on little pricy pigtail jumpers or some other makeshift workaround.

Replacing the harness with standard components would also give you the option of easily swapping or repairing parts later.
 

jm55

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Thanks for the reply. I appreciate your viewpoint and understand the merit in the idea, but for several reasons I do not want to disturb *this* guitar any more than I have to. I'd like to leave it as close to stock as possible. My options appear to be (a) buy pickups (Gibson or aftermarket) that have the plugs, or (b) buy pickups and plugs to be able to wire them myself. I have some crimping tools and should be able to do this assembly, provided I can figure out which wire goes where.


You say the plugs are wired differently on the bridge and neck. Do you know of any online reference that might help me with getting the wiring right when using the plugs? I will also keep your pickups in mind as I move forward looking for a suitable replacement.
 

akuster777

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Hi jm55,

I have no doubt that cooljuk's pickups would sound sweeter than these, but I just pulled this 57 / super 57 set from a new-to-me 2015 es335 studio, and I'll be putting an ad in the classifieds soon. You'll see I clipped the neck wire to remove the pup. PM me if interested.

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