Is every neck pickup muddy???

tonepad

Senior Member
Joined
Nov 12, 2013
Messages
145
Reaction score
59
No. Almost every boutique paf replica has a decent neck pup. Dimarzio 36th´s also have a very good neck picukp, Very wel balanced with the bridge. Mine Dr. Vintage´s have amazing neck pickups too.

I had a little problem with the 36th in the neck of my G0....bridge is bueno. May I ask more about your piece that is doing nicely with a 36th in the neck? The year....is it Weight relieved...what amp/amps are you using etc. I think these other factors affect the "muddy" factor for some of us. Thanks
 

hrfdez

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 14, 2013
Messages
3,568
Reaction score
2,901
I encountered this same issue, but after many trials and errors with the amps that I have, I finally got the sound that I wanted without changing the pups. It wasn't easy, but eventually I got there.
 

mudfinger

Thanks for the memories.
V.I.P. Member
Joined
Jan 19, 2010
Messages
17,258
Reaction score
50,517
Most of the people who gripe about the neck pickup do so because they're too ignorant or lazy to adjust it properly.
 

QReuCk

Senior Member
Joined
Jun 20, 2013
Messages
303
Reaction score
120

Now, let's try to obtain a crystal clear tone from a powerful 16k bridge humbucker... pre-EQing is our friend.

We scoop the mids on a wide spectrum, with a low Q factor. We rise the volume because the sound is weaker...

At low level, the result is stunning: hey, my SH4 sounds clearer than a Strat!

At the rehearsal room we plug the axe, crank up the volume and play.
The crystal clear tone is still there. Gorgeous.

And suddendly... POOF. Hey, my amp has blown a fuse. What happened?

Two weeks later, the amp tech calls: the OT of the amp is dead. Its tube have melted (!).

A reflection explains that: actually, the "cleaning" pre-EQing used was'nt killing the power of the SH4. The HB was still sending its overpowering signal to the amp, in the extreme low and high ranges.

The tubes have struggled to death to amplify these frequencies that the speaker couldn't reproduce. Then they have failed.

It's a true story: been there, seen that too. :lol:
I agree with most of what you said, but I still think some of the mud of a pickup can be removed by pre-EQing (and pre-EQing can have several forms, one of them being selecting short and low-capacitance guitar cables if you need less mud). But I thing this exemple is a bit extreme and a good occasion for me to give one more advice to anyone tempted to pre-EQ:

If you EQ in front, just do a favor to your amp and cut frequencies that are:
1° absolutely not needed on an elecric guitar in a band mix (anything below 80Hz and anything above 6KHz)
2° not restituted by your amp anyway

I would even advise to place the bass cut freq around 200Hz and the high cut freq around 3 to 4 KHz, but that's more a matter of taste.

Then keep in mind that if you cut high-mids too much, you will not be heard in the mix whatsoever. This will lead you into pushing your amp harder just for the sake of being heard.

Oh and about the hiss of active electronics: either you have higher standards than me regarding the acceptable amount of noise (totally possible if you record semi-professionnally), or my amp forgives a lot more in this regard than yours. This or Boss made huge progresses in controlling the noise produced by their EQ's recently.
 

MCAN

Senior Member
Joined
Mar 10, 2011
Messages
893
Reaction score
474
I once had my tone knob installed backward. I would complain about how my neck had no top end, until I rolled it toward 1. After checking things out, I found the pot was backward.
It can happen.
 

Sustainamaniac

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 31, 2013
Messages
2,790
Reaction score
6,174
Has anyone tried a treble bleed before? I've heard of it and wasn't sure if it was worth it.
 

entresz

Senior Member
Joined
Oct 23, 2011
Messages
1,156
Reaction score
599
Has anyone tried a treble bleed before? I've heard of it and wasn't sure if it was worth it.

I tried one, but I wasn't keen on it. It was a bit too thin when I rolled the volume back. I think 50's wiring is a bit better IMO.
 

The Wedge

Banned
Joined
May 6, 2009
Messages
1,701
Reaction score
998
It seems like every stock neck pickup I have is terrible!! Just bought a 13 Trad. Redid all the wiring (50s) with nice pots and caps. It plays like a dream and the bridge pickup is on point, BUT the classic 57 in the neck sounds like the tone is rolled off. I've lowered the pup down to the pickup ring and raised the polepieces very high to no avail, it sounds muddy on all my amps. I'd like it to be bright and then have the woman tone peter green thing on tap with the tone knob. Trolling thru MLP has not given me a direct simple answer. Do I need to adjust it or replace it? What am I missing here? Thanks for your time
not on my 90 standard. It's amazing.
 

jw3571

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 13, 2011
Messages
950
Reaction score
257
I've always wondered this as well. How does Slash get his sound with a neck pick up? Mine sounds muddy, his does not.
 

Dolebludger

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 11, 2009
Messages
17,782
Reaction score
18,418
One simple answer might be to turn the volume down on your neck pup, or to lower the gain on your amp, or both. And maybe dial off some tone on your guitar.

Gotta tell you, it is next to impossible on some amps. regardless of the guitar settings or pups, they seem to go directly from pure clean to mud and grit with no in between. All amps will play clean (unless you have a very small one played very loud), and all amps will do super distortion. But not all amps will do "in between". I had a Mesa that went directly from pure lean to chainsaw. It's gone. When I look for amps, I look for that in between tone.
 

79standard

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 10, 2011
Messages
12,324
Reaction score
81,850
The DiMarzio Humbucker from Hell is one of the best neck pickups ever made. Not muddly at all. At the risk of blaspheming, I'd say it's at least even-steven with my Fralin Pure PAF.
 

garybaldy

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 9, 2011
Messages
1,977
Reaction score
1,204
The DiMarzio Humbucker from Hell is one of the best neck pickups ever made. Not muddly at all. At the risk of blaspheming, I'd say it's at least even-steven with my Fralin Pure PAF.
As I said in #12
 

Bigfoot410

I'll have a sammich!
Gold Supporting Member
Joined
Oct 19, 2011
Messages
17,076
Reaction score
40,883
I have a pair of '57s in my classic custom. You need baked maple, not P/Us. Mine sounds fantastic. :)
Pry that crappy rosewood off there!!!
 

Dolebludger

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 11, 2009
Messages
17,782
Reaction score
18,418
You might want to look at Wilkinson humbuckers. I have them on one of my guitars. While I haven't measured their output, they sound like they are low output. Their tone is actually crisp, and certainly no mud on the neck pup. And they are inexpensive.

While i am no fan of rosewood board (preferring ebony), I question how much the finger board has to do with tone.
 

entresz

Senior Member
Joined
Oct 23, 2011
Messages
1,156
Reaction score
599
For anyone interested, here's what the Lawrence Tarbacks sound like in my 1977 L6-S. A non muddy neck pickup sound. I think I'm using my old Peavey Bandit here, but it should give you an idea of the nice bit of high end these pickups have.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vvIAyomNCrg
 

Latest Threads



Top