Problem Diagnosis

Discussion in 'Other T-Types and Partscasters' started by Toast, Jul 16, 2019.

  1. Toast

    Toast Tele-Holic

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    I have a Yamaha AES1500 and I noticed a small problem. If I strum a chord I can go from the neck pickup selector switch to the middle selector and the guitar volume sounds fine, but when I go from the middle selector to the bridge pickup I lose loads of volume and I have to turn up my volume knob (on guitar) to 11 to hear that pickup. Is the likely solution to this problem just a matter of raising the pickup closer to the string? I should just try adjusting the pickup and seeing what happens, but I figured I'd run it by the forum first.
     
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2019
  2. Preacher

    Preacher Friend of Leo's

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    There are two options for you.

    1) raise the pick up at the bridge so the volume levels are even.
    2) lower the neck and bridge pick up so the volume levels are even with the bridge.

    I offer both of these suggestions as I had a guitar where when I raised the bridge pup the tone was horrible, but about an 1/4" lower it was great. I ended up lowering the neck pup about the same 1/4" and the volume leveled out and I did not lose any tone on the neck pup.

    It is kind of like running sound, sometimes the answer is not to turn something up, but to turn something down.
     
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  3. Toast

    Toast Tele-Holic

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    Thanks. Oh man, that is such a good perspective and it leads me to this question. Does that mean you could adjust the middle selector sound of a telecaster by raising or lowering the pickup heights to, say, give a bit more volume to your bridge pickup, but still have your neck pickup in a kind of background role (lower volume)? Edit: You know, I think you already answered that question :)
     
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2019
  4. Toast

    Toast Tele-Holic

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    Problem solved, thanks.
     
  5. Milspec

    Milspec Friend of Leo's

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    The exception to that rule would be if you were running something like Lace Sensor pickups where the height doesn't matter and would have no effect. More of a Strat thing, but with the amount of modding going on these days I felt it was worth mentioning.
     
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  6. Dacious

    Dacious Poster Extraordinaire

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    You can buy setup rulers online, eBay etc. I find mine useful, had it nearly twenty years.

    It gives you a ballpark setup figure, which you can tweak depending on things like how strong the pickups are, and how strong compared to each other. Most people like to get a solid clean bright tone.
    IMG_20190717_113246.jpg
    Usually if you fret your guitar at the last fret and look from the side you want to see 3-4 nickels thick clearance on the treble string side and 4-5 on the bass side of your neck pup.


    A little less clearance (closer to the strings) on the bridge.

    Usually the closer the pickup to the strings, more output. When you get too close you get 'wolf tones' - the magnets are getting so close they affect string vibration. Not a good sound, guitar sounds out of tune and harsh.
     
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  7. Toast

    Toast Tele-Holic

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    A little background on this problem, I took the guitar into GC to see what they'd offer me for it, but their guitar buying person checked it out. They wouldn't give me an offer price because they said one of my pickups wasn't working and needed repair. The tech didn't turn up the volume knob all the way so he thought the pickup was just dead. Anyway, when I got home I discovered that the PU worked, but had very little volume. I suspect I may have lowered the PU years ago and forgot about it. You know the rest of the story. Thanks again for the advice. Great info. Now I know how to recognize and fix wolf tones.
     
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2019
  8. Milspec

    Milspec Friend of Leo's

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    Says a lot about Guitar Center as well doesn't it?
     
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  9. Toast

    Toast Tele-Holic

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    In their defense, they were pretty swamped at the time so they were a bit rushed. I think the guy who checked the guitar probably went through a checklist, but didn't really bother investigating problems. You really had to turn the volume knob all the way up to hear the pickup. I hate to admit that I go to GC a lot, but it's just close to my place.
     
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