Welcome to this sub-forum, which will focus on understanding guitar pickups by the testing and analysis of their electrical and magnetic properties.
Why do we want to do that? Because, the purpose of a pickup is to produce an electrical signal, which with amplification, provides the tones that we hear. If we can measure or derive the relevant electrical characteristics on a consistent basis, we can understand very much about how our pickups will sound, why they do so, how we can control their tone, and how they compare to each other. These studies are complimentary to listening and playing, and give great insight into the issues involved. The information is not really complex, but it is hard to come by elsewhere in a comprehensive form.
I'm very pleased to welcome Antigua to GuitarNuts2. Working through the Strat Talk and TDPRI forums, he has developed a testing methodology that that gives very great insight into pickup performance at several levels. I've been pleased to be are part of the discussions over the last few months. We are also indebted to Ken Willmott who is also working in this area and has designed the testing circuitry being used. (Ken, if you see this, we will welcome you here too).
The testing methods to date involve exciting the pickups from a signal generator using a driver coil, and measuring the amplitude of the results. Measurements with the pickup alone, or as loaded by typical guitar circuitry are plotted. From these, response can be seen directly, or further properties can be derived and compared. Several dozen pickups have already been tested. I've already used the results in the latest update to the GuitarFreak spreadsheet.
On this sub-forum, we will cover the principles of how pickups work, testing methods, testing and analysis on a range of actual pickups, and the numerical modelling of pickups based on theory and tests.
There will be something here for anyone interested in guitar pickups, whether it is to get deeply into testing and theory, or just to get some insight into how a Fat50 compares to a CS69.
Let me the second to welcome antigua to The NutzHouse!
I too am looking forward with anticipation to what's coming, namely an in-depth treatise on the very foundation of all that we hear from an electric guitar. In the words of one of my professors, back before dirt was invented, "this oughtta be fun!".
The stage is all yours, buddy, so let 'er rip!
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