View post (Picking too deep, or in the wrong place?)

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Guitar Tricks Instructor
Joined: 08/09/05
Posts: 8,017
Originally Posted by: ben.r.s

Do you mean what pickup I'm using, or how I'm deciding which pickup to use?[/quote]

When you put the pickup selector on the middle pickup what music do you play? Why do you select that pickup?

For example, I use the the middle pickup for clean-sh Buddy Holly chord timbres. Because that's the pickup he used on many of his classic tunes. Or Beatles & 60s type pop material. For what it's worth, you can see on pictures of Holly's Strat that the edges of the neck & middle pickup under the E & B strings are worn away from strumming!

I also combine the middle & bridge for a twangy blues lead tone. That's what is used for some of those songs to get that timbre. Having the middle a bit lower sometimes helps take the edge off the bridge pickup being so loud & bright. Or combining it with the neck helps get the twangy quack without the heavy bass of the neck pickup overpowering it.

I have Strats on which I keep the all the pickups the same height. But they are all lowered enough that it sounds good & they stay out of my way picking.

That blonde Strat in the screen grab is the main guitar I use for fast lead work. So it helps to have the middle pickup lower. And when I use it there isn't much change in overall volume anyway.

My point is that ultimately you set your guitar, amp & adjust your pickups for some specific musical purpose. If you are still learning & practicing & not sure yet, then don't worry too much about it until you encounter an issue that needs adjusting. Improve your picking so it doesn't interfere & see if that helps before you even worry about pickup height.

[quote=ben.r.s]I've had the PRS for longer - I started with a custom 24 as my 'main guitar' as it's so versatile (and it feels very good to play!). But then I wanted some other tone options, so I added the strat and also a PRS hollowbody 2. I'm still playing about with those two, finding the best way to use them.

Very different guitars! Have fun exploring all those tone options!

Christopher Schlegel
Guitar Tricks Instructor

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