MHS P-90

Olivil

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Recently bought a Memphis ES-295 and it comes equipped with "MHS P-90 Pickups". This is the P-90 Memphis installs in their guitars (330, ES-LP, 335-P90, ...). I heard about the legend that all Gibson P-90 are the same, from the "cheapies" to the Custom Shop, but what about Memphis? From what I understand they make their pickups in-house so surely there's the opportunity for them to make them a bit differently than those in Nashville.

I have not received the guitar yet so I'm wondering what's your experience with the MHS P-90s?
Same old same old?
 

mdubya

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Not sure about the exact one you have, but MHS made slightly underwound P-90s with A2 and A3 magnets vs standard Gibson USA P-90s tend to be 8kOmhs with A5 magnets.

My A2 underwound P-90s sound great, slightly less output (volume) than the standard A5 P-90s I have, but otherwise sound like P-90s. The A5s have a bit more top end, but can sound almost just like the A2s with volumes and tones rolled back.
 

Andrew1225

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They sound weaker and warmer, a little drier in a good way.
They’re also hum cancelling in the middle position.
 

LeftyF2003

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P-90s = what old PAFs were going for. Lower output pickups can sound more clean and spanky (think early Billy Gibbons). The best ones can sound like a Tele, which is a funny thing for Gibson to shoot for but there you go! :cool:
 

Olivil

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Not sure about the exact one you have, but MHS made slightly underwound P-90s with A2 and A3 magnets vs standard Gibson USA P-90s tend to be 8kOmhs with A5 magnets.

My A2 underwound P-90s sound great, slightly less output (volume) than the standard A5 P-90s I have, but otherwise sound like P-90s. The A5s have a bit more top end, but can sound almost just like the A2s with volumes and tones rolled back.
Right, so they really are different. That's good to know as I didn't really like the stock P-90 in my Historic Junior.
My guitar is supposed to have an A3 in the neck, A2 in the bridge. One of them is reversed so they hum cancel in the middle position. Will post feedback once I get the guitar! Supposed to get here in two weeks.
 

wmachine

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I'm guessing you have a 2015 reissue 1953 model? I have 2015 reissue 1954 ES-175D with the same pups. Unfortunately I have not played it enough to give you any real evaluation of the pups other than to say I really like the sound.
 

Olivil

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52 ES-295 Cherry limited run. The standard gold 295 reissue from Memphis has two A2 that don’t hum cancel in middle position from what I can tell.
 

mdubya

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Right, so they really are different. That's good to know as I didn't really like the stock P-90 in my Historic Junior.
My guitar is supposed to have an A3 in the neck, A2 in the bridge. One of them is reversed so they hum cancel in the middle position. Will post feedback once I get the guitar! Supposed to get here in two weeks.
There is an active thread on LPF with Mat Koehler answering questions. He addresses some questions about Memphis specs. Might be a good read while you wait! :thumb:

The major difference in my ES 330 is that the range of output is smaller with the lower output P-90s.

On the standard A5 P-90s, I keep the volumes and tones rolled back most of the time as they are "too much" with everything on 10.

I think you will like the MHS Spec.

As previously mentioned, I ended up shimming my neck pickup higher because it was weaker than I am used to. That 100% fixed my issue. I didn't like raising the pole pieces because they interfered with my picking.
 

Olivil

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Yep, no real details but it confirms what everybody said about P-90s. It's hard to mess them up! I still think something was wrong with my Junior's as it sounded very very boomy on the low strings and no polepiece adjustments fixed that. Ended up replacing it with a Wolfetone Meaner which was a definite upgrade to my ears. It is a 9K P-90 with A2 so my guess is it's closer to the MHS than the regular one. Very eager to receive the guitar, scheduled to arrive on the 8th because of shipping delays. Will post pictures and impressions when it gets here. :) Thanks for the info 'dubya!
 

mdubya

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Yep, no real details but it confirms what everybody said about P-90s. It's hard to mess them up! I still think something was wrong with my Junior's as it sounded very very boomy on the low strings and no polepiece adjustments fixed that. Ended up replacing it with a Wolfetone Meaner which was a definite upgrade to my ears. It is a 9K P-90 with A2 so my guess is it's closer to the MHS than the regular one. Very eager to receive the guitar, scheduled to arrive on the 8th because of shipping delays. Will post pictures and impressions when it gets here. :) Thanks for the info 'dubya!

:thumb:

I thought his answer left a bit to be desired. @cooljuk would say that Gibson P-90s are definitely NOT made the same as they ever were.

I do agree that it is hard to mess them up.
 


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