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> One Pickup Guitar - Tips Wanted!
KenA
post Apr 6 2015, 01:02 PM
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Hi guys/girls,

I'm in the quest of finding a good 1 pickup guitar. There are several on them, but I narrowed my search to basically 3 models:

1. Gibson Les Paul Jr ( single cut ) : the exception here would be the 2015 model because the Nut Width is 45mm and I think it's too wide for my small hands, but it does have nice specs. Maybe if I try one in the store I may change my mind?

2. AXL USA Bulldog : this one looks like a great substitute for the Junior, better components, just doesn't come with the Gibson Tradition, although I've heard that nowadays Gibson quality is a bit on the down side?

3. Yamaha Pacifica 510V : it can be seen as a modern take of the Junior. The P-Rails pickup makes this guitar more flexible tonewise speaking. It's 25.5" scale length though?

Thanks in advance :-)
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Gabriel Leopardi
post Apr 6 2015, 02:17 PM
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I don't have experience with these ones but I have experience with buying guitars. My suggestion is, now that you only have 3 to choose, go to the store and try them. You will feel which is the one once you play them all.


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Mertay
post Apr 6 2015, 02:21 PM
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Just sharing some thoughts, to me the advantage and best use of a single pickup guitar is when there isn't much between the pickup and the amp. Many consider 1 PU guitars sound and feeling more alive due to this fact.

Having a tone, volume knob has a huge effect in sound (mainly decreasing/smoothing high frequencies). Some also consider splittable humbuckers sounding a tiny bit more dull compared to traditional that are used with 3 way switches (mainly gibson les paul's).

There is also the psychological fact that having only 1 pickup will force you to work more to get tone and I'm a believer, one focuses more to his playing and critically adjusting amps/pedals.

So to me, having a 1 PU guitar and having a bunch of tone options (like p-rails) don't fit each other. Not saying results will be bad, might be even better for you but defeats the purpose.

As for the guitars you listed, I have no experience with AXL guitars.

For gibson, trying guitars is still the way to go as each sound different even on the same and affordable models. Some jr's sound amazing, some don't...

I don't know that yamaha model but opinions on the p-rails are very mixed, friends I trust comments its humbucker mode to be too thick while other modes not convincing as they expected. I'm a fan of the 611 by the way, might be the most versatile guitar ever and perfect for gigs be it jazz, metal or anything in between smile.gif

This post has been edited by Mertay: Apr 6 2015, 02:21 PM


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KenA
post Apr 6 2015, 04:44 PM
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Yep, playing one before buying is a must. I believe I can put my hands on a Yamaha and the Gibson, but probably not the AXL . Based on what I've heard on YT reviews, the P-rails does sound awkward and yes, simplicity is the main aspect of those guitars. Well let's see what happens, the default option is the Junior, just hope I find a 43mm nut. A humbucker instead of a P90 is still doable, but then it's more hardrock / 80's metal type which is good also.
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Mertay
post Apr 6 2015, 04:54 PM
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Since the one PU would make such a difference, unless I've really made my mind on a P90 I'd go for a humbucker.

Simply because there are so many options out there for that standard size. The SD humbucker sized p90 get good reviews, there are even gold foil options these days;

http://www.guitarfetish.com/GFS-Gold-Foil-Pickups_c_525.html


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Todd Simpson
post Apr 6 2015, 05:04 PM
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I too have zero experience on these types of guitars. sad.gif Glad to hear you are going to try as many as you can before buying smile.gif That will probably tell you more than we could anyway smile.gif Let us know which one you get!

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QUOTE (KenA @ Apr 6 2015, 11:44 AM) *
Yep, playing one before buying is a must. I believe I can put my hands on a Yamaha and the Gibson, but probably not the AXL . Based on what I've heard on YT reviews, the P-rails does sound awkward and yes, simplicity is the main aspect of those guitars. Well let's see what happens, the default option is the Junior, just hope I find a 43mm nut. A humbucker instead of a P90 is still doable, but then it's more hardrock / 80's metal type which is good also.


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klasaine
post Apr 6 2015, 05:49 PM
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I like a Jr. with a either a P-90 or normal/vintage output PAF.
That's more of a late 60s and 70s straight ahead R&R tone and/or 'hard rock' sound.

Think Leslie West and 'Mountain' ...






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KenA
post Apr 6 2015, 08:04 PM
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QUOTE (Mertay @ Apr 6 2015, 03:54 PM) *
Since the one PU would make such a difference, unless I've really made my mind on a P90 I'd go for a humbucker.
Simply because there are so many options out there for that standard size. The SD humbucker sized p90 get good reviews, there are even gold foil options these days;
http://www.guitarfetish.com/GFS-Gold-Foil-Pickups_c_525.html


The humbucker sized slot on the 1 pup guitar would definitely increase the palette options. The GFS looks very interesting and open the possibilities for future experiments! The SD Liberator is a good idea for someone who tries several pups ... never used though?
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Mertay
post Apr 6 2015, 11:45 PM
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QUOTE (KenA @ Apr 6 2015, 07:04 PM) *
The humbucker sized slot on the 1 pup guitar would definitely increase the palette options. The GFS looks very interesting and open the possibilities for future experiments! The SD Liberator is a good idea for someone who tries several pups ... never used though?


Affordable in USA but not sure in Brasil. My luthier made soldering to my guitar on the same switch 3 times if I remember right and never had a problem, so its not a must. When needed, just find somebody with good soldering skills and you'll be fine.

Such guitars usually comes with well known PU's so incase you would like to change them, describing what you need compared to what you have should be easier to understand and give advice.


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KenA
post Apr 7 2015, 12:54 PM
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Yes Mertay, actually anything from overseas here in Brasil is at least 2x the original price, but expect to pay 3x ... I'm just think about getting new gear ( can be used in case I find something interesting ) because I'll be in Japan in may for a month, but again Japan is not the cheapest place to get gear, but they have gear from all over the world ... I'll try to find stores that sells used gear.

I do the soldering myself when changing pickups, but that 'liberator' thing can be handy for someone who change pups frequently, not my case though.

A bit off-topic, I don't know about you guys, but by living in a place where things are so expensive and hard to get and also by comparing expensive gear with less expensive ones, nowadays I would be more 'proud' to have and find less expensive gear, let's say a cheaper guitar that performs well than a top of the line one that should obviously sound good ( not always the case ) ... a good example is my U$35.00 Joyo American pedal. ( far from perfection, it's noisy at higher settings, but I never go that high on the drive knob, so ... )
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Mertay
post Apr 7 2015, 01:41 PM
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Cool, sixstringsamurai from our forum wrote a blog post about Tokyo you should definitely read it!

http://sixstringsamurai.co.nz/2014/07/08/g...ou-should-know/

Also about the expense of gear where we live, I totally understand as I'm living in Turkey (economy's of brazil and Turkey are often compared as they are very similar) smile.gif

What I do is go to the distributors store for the product I want and pay cash, specially if you visit frequent enough so they get to know you they might do some discounts wink.gif

This post has been edited by Mertay: Apr 7 2015, 01:41 PM


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klasaine
post Apr 7 2015, 02:23 PM
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I spent a week in Curitiba in 1999 or 2000(?). Beautiful place.


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KenA
post Apr 7 2015, 02:47 PM
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Yep, damn economy :-( ... add 'corruption' to that also!

I was born here in Curitiba and it used to be a cool place to live ... too much marketing made it a little Sao Paulo, heheh

Actually the whole world is kinda messy nowadays anyway :-(

ps. thanks for the Tokyo link ... will definitely read that :-)

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Mertay
post Apr 7 2015, 06:18 PM
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Guitar gods might have heard you smile.gif

http://www.revolvermag.com/news/win-a-prs-...ver-guitar.html


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KenA
post Apr 7 2015, 09:42 PM
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Good vid/article here: Single-pickup guitar review round-up -> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YUdq59CRcxk
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klasaine
post Apr 8 2015, 03:54 AM
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A single pkup axe with with a midrange focused boost (in conjunction with your other pedals) can cover a lot of ground.
I have a Strat and an LP 'special' with p90s ... I stay mostly on the bridge pkup when playing both those guitars.


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PosterBoy
post Apr 8 2015, 10:59 AM
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Ken I didn't realise you were in Brasil. I should be hounding you to help with my portuguese practice. My mother in law is coming over in August for a few months (she's in Niquelandia, GO) and doesn't speak a word of English!

As I said at TF the Phil X Yamaha is a single P90 guitar, There are some single humbucker Charvels that would would work, they wouldn't be too metal.



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KenA
post Apr 8 2015, 05:34 PM
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Hey PosterBoy, no problem, any doubts just let me know ... GO - Goiania is a bit far from here ( central / north ) of Brazil ... I believe it's a very hot/warm place to live ... I live in the south where it can be quite cold in the winter, but nothing like in Europe or North America ( a cold winter will be something like 0 to 10 degrees Celsius.

Back to the single pup idea, I thought it would be a good way to force myself to tweak the Volume and Tone controls \ also the amp settings as well ... that may lead someone to better understand the real importance of Mids/Treble/Bass and if you add a Compressor to limit some frequencies ... ideally speaking I believe a HH or HS config would be good for me. Not sure I would need the HSS or HSH guitar type?
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klasaine
post Apr 9 2015, 12:23 AM
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I played a 1961 single p90 Epiphone 'Coronet' today.
Glorius guitar!
It really did get darker but clear (neck pkup type) tones with the tone control rolled back about 1/2 way.


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Todd Simpson
post Apr 10 2015, 06:49 AM
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I"ve owned guitars with a single pickup, and I gotta say I missed the other pickups. It looks cool smile.gif But you are really really really limited in terms of the tones that are available to you. The handy thing about a HSH setup (if they are splittable) is that you can combine single coil tones with humbucker tones for a huge variety of tonal options.

I've got an HSS setup in one guitar and it's easily the most flexible guitar I've ever owned in terms of tones that it can achieve. I've noticed that HSS guitars seem to sound a bit different than HsH guitars even when all the pickups can be split/tapped.

But still, single pickup guitars have a very focused tone and you know what you are gonna get before you pick it up to play so it reduces the amount of searching for tone via twiddling with knobs/selectors on the guitar.

In short, everyone should own a single pickup guitar at some point IMHO smile.gif Maybe your time is now.

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QUOTE (KenA @ Apr 8 2015, 12:34 PM) *
Hey PosterBoy, no problem, any doubts just let me know ... GO - Goiania is a bit far from here ( central / north ) of Brazil ... I believe it's a very hot/warm place to live ... I live in the south where it can be quite cold in the winter, but nothing like in Europe or North America ( a cold winter will be something like 0 to 10 degrees Celsius.

Back to the single pup idea, I thought it would be a good way to force myself to tweak the Volume and Tone controls \ also the amp settings as well ... that may lead someone to better understand the real importance of Mids/Treble/Bass and if you add a Compressor to limit some frequencies ... ideally speaking I believe a HH or HS config would be good for me. Not sure I would need the HSS or HSH guitar type?



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