ESP guitar pickup height - Bridge vs. Neck up???k

Discussion in 'Pickups, Electronics & General Tech' started by espshredder, Apr 4, 2014.

  1. espshredder

    espshredder SS.org Regular

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    Hi guys, on the ESP manual it clearly states that the bridge maximum height (bass side) is 2.5 mm and treble side is 1.5mm:
    http://cdn.growassets.net/user_files/esp/site_assets/000/000/436/original.pdf

    very easy to understand, but I noticed they completely left out the neck up, which confused me??? :shred:

    Would it be wise to say, the same maximum measurements can be applied to the neck pickup?
     
  2. cardinal

    cardinal Strat 7 Guy

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    Neck pickup is usually further from the strings because of how the strings vibrate, the signal is stronger at that position than near the bridge.

    But, just like setting the action, setting pickup height generally is about personal taste. It can be set too high: the strings can hit the tops of the pickups if you go crazy. And particularly with single coils or humbuckers with strong rod magnets: if the magnets get too close to the strings they can actually pull them out of tune. And with any pickup, getting it too close to the strings can choke sustain because the magnetic field is grabbing at the vibrating string and dampening it.

    But in general, just put them wherever you want. Closer to the strings will have more output; further way will lower the output.
     
  3. espshredder

    espshredder SS.org Regular

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    so in other words, your saying that using the "maximum" bridge pickup heights that ESP Listed would be "too close" for the neck pickup?

    I wonder why they listed the bridge pickup but not the neck pickup... :nuts::idea:
     
  4. Mik3D23

    Mik3D23 things

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    I would imagine the neck pickup would have the same "max height" as the bridge if they're the same pickup.

    My neck usually ends up a few MMs lower than the bridge, (unless the pickups are calibrated for each other to have the same volume at the same height), and the treble side ends up a little higher than the bass side.

    Also, in that PDF you linked, even it says that EMGs can be put higher than their listed "maximum heights", so if you have EMGs I wouldn't worry too much about those numbers. In fact, I wouldn't worry too much about numbers at all when setting pickup height, trust your ears :yesway:
     
  5. cardinal

    cardinal Strat 7 Guy

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    Generally, yes, but really it's all personal taste. If the neck pickup has the same power and the bridge pickup, it will tend to sound louder with more output at the same distance from the strings as the bridge pickup. Thats because the string vibrates in a wider arch over the neck pickup (close to the bridge pickup, the string is very stiff, just like it's stiffer near the nut).

    I've never measured where my pickups are, but the neck pickups always end up farther away from the strings than the bridge pickup to balance the output with the bridge pickup. But I also tend to want my neck pickup to have a clearer, less overdrive sound than my bridge pickups, so I'm lowering them to take output away from the pickup as much as I'm lowering it to reduce the volume, too.
     
  6. DslDwg

    DslDwg SS.org Regular

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    In general neck pick-ups are set at a level that balances them with the bridge pick-up.

    In most cases once you've established you bridge pick-up height you would adjust the neck pick-up height so when the volume on each pick-up is dimed that they would be equally as loud or the neck pick-up would be slightly softer. So typically the neck pick is set as a function of the bridge and not to a particular height.

    If you have a simple three-way switch bridge/bridge-neck/neck sort of configuration and set the pick-up height identically typically one of the pick-ups will over power the other in the center position.

    Ultimately it's all personal preference.
     
  7. Albionic

    Albionic First of the magi

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    Throw the instructions in the bin and adjust till u like the sound
     

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