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> Does The "lead" Pickup Mean The Neck?
Praetorian
post Aug 1 2008, 04:41 AM
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I have seen this term, and don't know for sure which pickup it is referring to.


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RIP Dime
post Aug 1 2008, 05:12 AM
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Ya know what, I'm not really sure! laugh.gif My guess would be that they are talking about the neck pickup, but that doesn't really makes sense considering people play lead on whatever pickup they want. laugh.gif

Sorry, not much help. But I'm with you in your confusion.


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midnight
post Aug 1 2008, 05:30 AM
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Lead is the bridge pickup, rhythm is the neck. Of course you can play either on any pickup.

This is a cool site. I've learned a lot in the few weeks I've been here.

This post has been edited by midnight: Aug 1 2008, 05:32 AM
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swingline
post Aug 1 2008, 05:36 AM
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On Les Pauls the three way toggle says rhythm for the neck and lead for the bridge, although I play on whatever I feel like. biggrin.gif


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stickyfingers
post Aug 1 2008, 08:43 AM
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it depends on the sound you want.

i'd use the bridge pickup for metal with palm muted stuff. it has more attack than the neck pickup that evens your sound a bit.

normally i use the neck pickup for sweeps or fast runs.


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MickeM
post Aug 1 2008, 08:46 AM
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I usualy play rhythm on the bridge pu and switch to the neck pu for solos. Gives more clear, fat and defined tones imo.


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Tuubsu
post Aug 1 2008, 08:55 AM
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QUOTE (swingline @ Aug 1 2008, 07:36 AM) *
On Les Pauls the three way toggle says rhythm for the neck and lead for the bridge, although I play on whatever I feel like. biggrin.gif


I used to have a les paul and it said Rythm and Treble. unsure.gif


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Marcus Lavendell
post Aug 1 2008, 09:29 AM
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QUOTE (Praetorian @ Aug 1 2008, 05:41 AM) *
I have seen this term, and don't know for sure which pickup it is referring to.

I've never heard anyone say that, but they must mean "lead pickup" = neck pickup. That's my best guess anyway smile.gif


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Xuestor
post Aug 1 2008, 11:05 AM
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lead/treble/bridge pickup --- rythm/bass/neck pickup. Thats the factory terms. i know prs calls the neck for bass pickup, and the bridge for treble. Gibson calls them rythm for neck, and treble for bridge I think.


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-Zion-
post Aug 1 2008, 12:04 PM
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on the LP it says Rhythm and Treble.. however, i would say on this particular brand of guitar that the "lead" is the treble.. as the name implies it should have more treble really cutting the sound of the guitar through the other instruments..

but use whatever you think sounds better.. usually the neck has a softer and fatter tone compared to the bridge..
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Juan M. Valero
post Aug 1 2008, 12:40 PM
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mmm I didn't listen it before. I use neck for the sweep picking and alternate and bridge for legato and tapping, so I don't know what should it means...


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Bogdan Radovic
post Aug 1 2008, 12:59 PM
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Ok now this is getting confusing smile.gif But I never heard that way of defining pickups anyway.. wink.gif


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JVM
post Aug 1 2008, 12:59 PM
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It makes perfect sense when you think about it. Compare a strat or a guitar with strat type bladed pickup selector to a les paul.

On a strat, the bridge position is obviously much more trebly than the neck. On a les paul there's a 3 way labeled rhythm and treble/lead (to not mention middle position). I think a lot of people are told that the bridge pickup is the way to go for metal and heavy rock etc, but they end up using the neck position without realizing it thinking it sounds better (which is purely opinion of course).

But think about it. Think of the physics of the strings. When you pick near the bridge, it gets trebly, and as stickyfingers says has more attack. When you pick nearer the neck, you start getting a fatter and warmer tone. Obviously, the pickups can be the exact same but they're going to "pick up" and amplify only what is going on on the strings above them. For the bridge pickup it picks up that trebly tone. The neck picks up that fat warm tone.

[edit] So to simplify, lead = bridge and rhythm = neck. If you don't like that trebly sounding pickup on your guitar, and want to switch it out for example, change the bridge! But it's all convention really. Play whatever sounds good to you, just be aware if you want to switch something out which pickup causes which sounds smile.gif

This post has been edited by JVM: Aug 1 2008, 01:03 PM


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Muris Varajic
post Aug 1 2008, 05:01 PM
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I would say there is no such a thing as lead or rhythm pickup.
There are lovely bright leads on bridge pickup
and those warm and soft leads using neck pickup.
Same goes for rhythm or anything else,just my 2 cents. smile.gif


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Henry Dietzel
post Aug 1 2008, 05:11 PM
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QUOTE (swingline @ Aug 1 2008, 12:36 AM) *
I play on whatever I feel like. biggrin.gif

Same here


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Slammer
post Aug 1 2008, 06:08 PM
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While you can use Any Pickup to play lead.

The Bridge Pickup is usually referred to as the Lead pickup, since it's mostly used for Lead playing, and the Neck Pickup is sometimes called the Rhythm pickup, since it is used alot for Rhythm. Although alot of jazz players use the Neck to play lead.


BTW ^^^^^^ thats from a book I have called "Total Guitar"
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Xuestor
post Aug 1 2008, 06:30 PM
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Just to make myself clear, the names shouldn't be taken as if you have to strictly play lead on the bridge pickup and vice versa. It's more of a technical thing. For example if someone explains a pickup replacement or where cables go, and he says rythm pickup, or bass pickup, he means the neck pickup and vice versa. Thats why these things are good to know.


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midnight
post Aug 1 2008, 11:43 PM
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I learned years ago that lead and rhythm pickup were just a way of identifying the pickups. "Lead" is another name for bridge pickup, "rhythm" another name for neck pickup. In never took it like you had to play rhythm or lead on a certain pickup.

I can see the confusion if you take it literally. It's weird...tomato, tamato I guess. smile.gif
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kjutte
post Aug 2 2008, 11:31 AM
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QUOTE (Praetorian @ Aug 1 2008, 05:41 AM) *
I have seen this term, and don't know for sure which pickup it is referring to.


There's nothing called the lead pickup. Don't listen to such smile.gif
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Fran
post Aug 2 2008, 02:48 PM
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Bridge (lead) pickup is usually wound hotter than neck pickup to make it even treblier and allow it to cut through.

But as has been mentioned, people use both pups to play both rhythm and leads, depending on the situation and the tone you wish to get. There are no rules, just a convention to name the bridge/neck pickups depending on the brand of guitar.


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