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what was Gibson thinking when they designed the Burstbuckers ?

NYCBURST

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Joined
May 11, 2016
Messages
209
Yup. Sure. Ok. Whatever.
lol... I think Gibson hit it out of the park with the burst buckers. I own throwbaks, Wizz, I have had lollars(which i hate) and real paf's I think the burst buckers are very close.... Although Stephen's design are the closest in my opinion.
You were around here when they came out. Have you forgotten all the posts about how perfect and wonderful they were? All the CC models that had them???? Seems they were even compared to pafs directly by members with both, iirc. Sound familure???

Wilko nailed it and I'll add this, damn few could ID them in a blindfold listening. As to what Gibson was thinking??? They were making an authentic sounding paf in several varieties, just like and as good as any. Everyone has a favorite and some just have to have expensive, unobtainium magic elf wound pickups to feel fulfilled. The big problem is one of contempt for anything familar. It's frankly laughable. My half dead ass, crippled beat up old hands and ears have no problem dialing up killer tone with ANY Gibson paf type pickup made. It ain't hard.
 

ajwain

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Joined
Jan 8, 2003
Messages
70
I think that reading the posts on this thread, it seems that most criticisms of Burstbuckers as opposed to Throwbacks or Custom Buckers are about how they compare with most players’ idea of what constitutes a “vintage” tone.
all these brands of pickups have wide variation in the basic tone they produce (as do the vintage PAFs they are trying to emulate), so it’s not really fair to compare individual experiences. That said, there are players who can detect the magnet type and pickup “family” by ear.
What’s important here is whether the sound (and feel) of the guitar suits you and what you want it to do.
In my humble opinion, there are very few Les Pauls - even original ones - whose Harmonic complexity and articulation can rival a good ES335 for example, so for me, a Les Paul needs to move away from that towards the more “classic rock” end of the spectrum.
In my own experience, a typical gig is about 70% Stratocaster, so when I reach for the Les Paul, I don’t want bluesy richness or vintage articulation , I want a sonic sledgehammer! My ‘02 Standard with BB Pros gives me the warm punch to drive through the mix. Sitting on the sofa at home, or maybe in a recording session, I might reach for a Custom Bucker loaded LP or even one fitted with “Montys” (which are my favourite PAF clones).... and yes, I’m lucky enough to have a few to choose from.
In short, I find it difficult to compare and criticise these pickups. They all do what they do, and for some, that might be exactly what’s needed.
 
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thin sissy

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Jan 2, 2006
Messages
2,533
I was looking through an old hard drive and came across a recording of a gig we did back in 2007 when I had just gotten an R8 (with BB1 and BB2). It hit me how much I liked the tone on that recording, very "quacky" and upper middy. I remember changing them short after that out of curiosity, and the BB's have been lying in a drawer ever since. But damn, those pickups really suited that guitar I realize now. IMHO they sounded kind of P-90:ish, and P-90's are almost the only thing I use these days.

But changing pickups can be fun, so do whatever makes you happy :)
 

mjross

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May 11, 2019
Messages
19
Brother, learning how to properly dial in an amplifier and how to correctly use the control pots on a guitar isn't tedious. It's basic tone craft. What I have seen in the last 20yrs is this notion that everything on 10 and static amplifier settings where it is expected that just plugging in will deliver some imagined ideal tone. Lazy.

Nothing wrong with finding a pickup that works best for you. That doesn't mean others are garbage or substandard and there is a lot of cork sniffing upturned nose pooh poohing going on. It is easy to make a good pickup like a Throbak sound like shit with dumbass amp settings. Does that mean they are crap pickups??? Or that some lazy dumbass couldn't be bothered to dial up an appropiate tone 'cause that would be tedious?

Try doing a festival tour with rented backlines of who knows what, with only minutes to dial up a tone and set levels. That skill can make all the difference.
Well said!
 

Sol

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Joined
Oct 26, 2001
Messages
567
I was here when the owners of the first historic Les Pauls fitted with Burst Buckers logged on to give us the benefit of their first impressions of the new pickups. The response as I recall, was overwhelmingly positive.
I recall that some owners of genuine 57 - 60 Les Paul's were taken aback that Gibson had released a pickup that like some genuine PAFs required the player to adjust their tone and volume pots to ride the increased tonal range of this new pickup.
 
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sanhozay

Member
Joined
Feb 14, 2003
Messages
163
bb's are not my fave or first choice & I've had guitars with better "paf" style pickups but they are fine sounding humbuckers. a bit strident in the top end on the bridge and a little woofy on the neck. I prefer them over the 57's - at least in a les paul. my 2011 R0 sounds pretty damn nice with stock burstbuckers. I'll get itchy and try something new but I love playing the guitar the way it is and it sounds fantastic. so, less motivated to go shopping
 

El Gringo

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Joined
Apr 8, 2015
Messages
3,968
Brother, learning how to properly dial in an amplifier and how to correctly use the control pots on a guitar isn't tedious. It's basic tone craft. What I have seen in the last 20yrs is this notion that everything on 10 and static amplifier settings where it is expected that just plugging in will deliver some imagined ideal tone. Lazy.

Nothing wrong with finding a pickup that works best for you. That doesn't mean others are garbage or substandard and there is a lot of cork sniffing upturned nose pooh poohing going on. It is easy to make a good pickup like a Throbak sound like shit with dumbass amp settings. Does that mean they are crap pickups??? Or that some lazy dumbass couldn't be bothered to dial up an appropiate tone 'cause that would be tedious?

Try doing a festival tour with rented backlines of who knows what, with only minutes to dial up a tone and set levels. That skill can make all the difference.
You are right and that is Gospel truth . I am guilty of not wanting to take the time to learn how to dial in Fender Guitars on my Marshall's as I get spoiled by the humbucker tones . I will have to mess with the dials when using the Tele's . Guilty and lazy . As my teachers used to tell me in school , that I was smart but I just didn't want to do the work . Deja - Vu all all over again !
 

Big Al

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Apr 24, 2002
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14,231
Yes Al I joined up here in '03 on the hunt for a good historic which a lot of guys including yourself helped me with thanks............my first real foray into the Gibson world in a semi informed way............a big learning curve for sure thanks to the help of the internet.
A lot of the talk/posts/threads in those days here was about changing your historics, nut, caps etc and Timbuckers, Rolphs, Holmes and some others were the most talked about pups as I remember.
I'd heard about Burstbuckers from the Gibson agent here in NZ in '02 that they were the latest and the greatest. However when I got my R0 in late '03 I already had in mind that I wanted to go the whole hog and find some PAFs and ordered a set of Timbuckers as you and others said you'd changed to them from PAFs.
When I put the Tims in my R0 that was the best fit for me with the PAFs and BBs not in the hunt. Funnily enough some T-Tops fitted well also.
And on it goes.
I rember you well. I was trying to jog a memory is all. Seems every new version is the greatest until the next one shows up and then somehow they lose all the tone properties that everyone was praising and develop new deficientcy in sound somehow. Seen it repeated over and over.

I had some guys checking out my well used 2000 R9, all stock with old nickle covers on the original 57 Classics, at the HOG thru a reissue offset Marshall JTM45. We were comparing a few vintage guitars and my R9.

"Are these vintage pafs?", "Tom Holmes?, Throbak?, Wizz?". "This sounds great. What are these pickups, patent stickers?"

Nope, just the stock 57 Classics with old covers.

"Huh! Must be the guitar"
 

Amp360

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Feb 16, 2012
Messages
226
I didn’t know the bbs in historic guitars are not the same as the ones you buy at the store separately

what’s up with that?
 

goldtop0

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Aug 19, 2003
Messages
8,033
I rember you well. I was trying to jog a memory is all. Seems every new version is the greatest until the next one shows up and then somehow they lose all the tone properties that everyone was praising and develop new deficientcy in sound somehow. Seen it repeated over and over.

I had some guys checking out my well used 2000 R9, all stock with old nickle covers on the original 57 Classics, at the HOG thru a reissue offset Marshall JTM45. We were comparing a few vintage guitars and my R9.

"Are these vintage pafs?", "Tom Holmes?, Throbak?, Wizz?". "This sounds great. What are these pickups, patent stickers?"

Nope, just the stock 57 Classics with old covers.

"Huh! Must be the guitar"

Not being exposed to many quality Gibsons from year to year is an age old problem in my part of the world. Went to the Arlington show in '11 and never looked back, played every vintage LP, Jnr etc I could get my hands on(dozens of guitars) and talked with all the old heads/pundits who were there.......learnt a lot for sure.
I agree that the 'latest and the greatest' is something that happens and we learn something new every day.
Good to share things with you Al (y)
 
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Big Al

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Apr 24, 2002
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Not being exposed to many quality Gibsons from year to year is an age old problem in my part of the world. Went to the Arlington show in '11 and never looked back, played every vintage LP, Jnr etc I could get my hands on(dozens of guitars) and talked with all the old heads/pundits who were there.......learnt a lot for sure.
I agree that the 'latest and the greatest' is something that happens and we learn something new every day.
Good to share things with you Al (y)
I'll share anything but a Vegamite Sammy!!!
 

goldtop0

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I'll share anything but a Vegamite Sammy!!!

I used to give away my vegemite and lettuce sammies to the boarders at my college when I was a teenager........they loved 'em and I hated 'em.........used to buy a meat pie and chocolate sundae from the tuckshop instead :LOL:
 

Big Al

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Apr 24, 2002
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I used to give away my vegemite and lettuce sammies to the boarders at my college when I was a teenager........they loved 'em and I hated 'em.........used to buy a meat pie and chocolate sundae from the tuckshop instead :LOL:
I have freinds from down under and I know how hard it is to source gear from here. The crazy insane upcharges and markup prices are absurd!!!!! When some would come up and stay at my place, they would just lose their minds in the many well stocked music stores in my area!! I remember buying suitcases for all the Fender guitars they bought. They would remove the necks and pack up the disassembled guitars in the suitcases.

I did learn to speak Strine pretty well though. I had hoped to spend some time down there and really wanted to go to New Zealand and New Guinea. Was a dream that didn't happen. My wife spent a year in New South Wales so there was that at least.
 

Big Al

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Apr 24, 2002
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Big Al has always been the voice of reason around here
It's not reason, Stumpster. It's self preservation. That stuff is some kind of terrible in my mouth. Freakin' pond algae butter on steroids! They bring jars when they vist and insist you have some. They love it!!!! Flippin' Pod People, "Try it", "Join us, Try it. You'll be like us.", "Tryyyyyy it!!!!!".

Nope, nope, nope!!! One bite was enough. Keep the jars, thank you very much. I'll just keep my mouth away and not ingest any algae spread please.
 
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