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Disappointed in LPs

Discussion in 'Other Guitars, other instruments' started by Cedarburger, Oct 2, 2020.

  1. 63 vibroverb

    63 vibroverb Tele-Afflicted

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    9 times out of 10, swapping in Alnico 4 magnets solve any problems I have with humbuckers. A pair of unpotted A4 humbuckers with 500k audio taper pots is a beautiful thing.
     
  2. The Angle

    The Angle Tele-Holic

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    Just seconding these and similar statements throughout the thread.

    I bought an Epi LP Classic a few years ago. It's a beautiful guitar with a quilted maple top and a comfortable neck but I couldn't get the sound I wanted. It took almost two months of tweak pickup height, play it for a week, tweak pickup height, play it for a week, etc., before I hit on the right adjustments. When I found the zone those pickups wanted, the guitar came alive.

    And, as others stated, volume and tone knobs are also a big part of it. Don't be reluctant to turn those knobs down, even WAY down, if that's what sounds good.
     
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  3. 50ShadesofOrange

    50ShadesofOrange Tele-Meister

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    I struggled with my Les Paul until I realized it wasn’t a Telecaster, so I stopped trying to make it sound like one and enjoyed it for what it was.
     
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  4. 50ShadesofOrange

    50ShadesofOrange Tele-Meister

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    Double post.
     
  5. Misty Mountain

    Misty Mountain Tele-Meister

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    My 1991 LP Classic really came to life when I swapped the ceramics for some Throbak pickups. Granted they are spendy but no mud!

    But I also added a fifties harness with real fifties bumblebees from creamtone. So I may have twisted the experiment a bit!
     
  6. Obsessed

    Obsessed Telefied Silver Supporter

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    I'm a huge Epi fan, but you are gonna get some mud with Epi humbuckers at every level that I have ever tried, so you are not alone. My solution over many years was super low output Alnico II "PAFs" without covers. I bought some very inexpensive "Vansons" from the U.K. on eBay (zebras) and have never looked back for my Epi Sheraton II. An inexpensive gamble that paid off for me. Just an idea.
     
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  7. Unionjack515

    Unionjack515 Tele-Afflicted

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    My first Les Paul was an R8 which I absolutely loved...then I got a great deal on a Traditional and thought if I upgraded everything (wiring harness, hardware, pickups, nut, tuners) to the spec of the R8 that it would turn into a great value if I could get the same sounds out of it. I couldn’t. The R8 continues to be my real number one. So much so that I bought another of the same model year. All Les Pauls are not created equal, period.
     
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  8. fishermike

    fishermike Tele-Meister

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    Play a few actual Gibson Les Pauls, then get back to us. You might still not like 'em, but you will have at least tried some actual LPs, as opposed to LP-shaped guitars.
     
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  9. Cedarburger

    Cedarburger TDPRI Member

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    Ok, thank you everyone!

    I am going to spend a few days messing with my (cheap) Epis to see what happens. No single coils for a few days so as not to confuse my ears.

    I am going to twist and turn knobs, screws, etc. to see what happens.

    I'd like to thank you all for the advice!
     
  10. Cedarburger

    Cedarburger TDPRI Member

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    Trying this, too.
     
  11. Cedarburger

    Cedarburger TDPRI Member

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    Those sound awesome!
     
  12. DrBGood

    DrBGood Tele-Holic

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    I sent you a private message on this.
     
  13. DrBGood

    DrBGood Tele-Holic

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    I knew it would come, just a question of time.
     
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  14. 3-Chord-Genius

    3-Chord-Genius Poster Extraordinaire

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    Humbuckers don't sound like single coils. If you want more treble, use the amp tone knobs. Those pickups have been around a long time.
     
  15. Ebidis

    Ebidis Tele-Afflicted

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    Those pickups in that Epi are not very good if you don't like mud. Better pickups could make that a great guitar.

    Humbuckers in general don't have to sound dark and muddy, there are many out there that are bright, airy, and lively sounding.
     
  16. Fiesta Red

    Fiesta Red Poster Extraordinaire

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    I love everything about Les Pauls—the look, the sound, the legendary players of the model (including it’s namesake)...

    Until I pick one up and start trying to play it.

    I don’t know what it is, but I can’t find one that I feel comfortable with or that sounds good when I play it.

    It’s not the scale—I have a couple of Gibson-scale guitars that feel great...

    It’s not the weight—both of my Telecasters are on the heavy side and my bass weighs over 12 pounds...

    It’s not the humbuckers—I have three humbucker-loaded guitars, all three of which have different types of pickups (one with PAF-style), all three of which I like...

    The only thing I’ve figured out is that possibly the placement of the pickups is the problem—the neck pickup is too close too the neck and tends to get boomy with my playing/picking technique and the bridge pickup is too close to the bridge and tends to get too thin with my technique...I’ve noticed the same problem with P-90-loaded LPs (P-90’s are my favorite pickups).

    I don’t have this problem with my Flying V copy (Dean VX), which has the pickups closer together in the middle of the body and further away from each extreme...

    Either way, I’m gonna keep searching for one that “fits” me...if I ever find one, hopefully it’s a cheaper one, cuz I’m not into making “investments” on instruments.
     
  17. swervinbob

    swervinbob Tele-Afflicted

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    You’ve got that right. Last year I picked up one of the new Gibson Les Paul Standard 50s. It never sounded...right, no matter what I did so I didn’t keep it. A few weeks ago I was at a store and asked to look at one. I plugged it into a DSL and hit an A chord. I just dropped my head because I knew I just cost myself $2500. Took it straight to a buddy’s house who has nothing but historics and customs. He couldn’t stop playing it. I haven’t touched another electric since I got it home.
     
  18. ZenGuitarist

    ZenGuitarist Tele-Afflicted

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    I think you might be happier with different pickups in your Epis but first I would spend some more time trying to dial them in. I definitely have more than one Epi with Alnico Classic Pro HBs but not sure if I have anything with the Probuckers. I really need to build a spreadsheet to keep track of everything . . .

    When I get a new guitar I have to spend some time with it and experiment to see what works best for that guitar. Sometimes I find the right combination right away and sometimes it takes me several sessions before I find the settings to get the sound I want. If you're persistent enough you can usually find a way to get the sound you want, but you may decide it's more trouble than it's worth. Me, I'm a pretty stubborn guy so I'll keep coming back to a guitar over and over until I find the settings that work for me.
     
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  19. FenderGyrl

    FenderGyrl Poster Extraordinaire

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    I love Alnico 2a and Alnico 4a in my LPs.
    Alnico 5s are also one of my favs.

    Years ago I learned that the Classic Rock era guitarists always kept their volume nudged back to 9. It gives the guitar a slightly compressed sound. Even 9.5 will do the trick.

    I was watching an Ed King video of him playing his Les Paul.
    He said that he never played with his volume pot set at 10. He preferred to let his amps do the work. He demonstrated his different leads, they all sounded great.

    I always use this trick / tip with my LPs especially.
    You get a more focused sound.

    I have quite a few Epi Les Pauls. Some of the older ones sound good with the original PUPS. Some of them have replacement PUPs. Some EPI Pickups do sound lifeless. You can adjust them to get the best out of them, but sometimes its worth upgrading them if the Guitar plays great.
     
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2020
  20. Elmore

    Elmore Tele-Holic

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    500K pots first. If that does not do it, new pickups. Find a player you like and put in pickups like them.
     
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