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Pick Ups For Individual Strings?


kidmonkey
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I know this might come across a bit lame to some but here goes.

I'm building an experimental guitar and being a bit of a layman in these matters have a few technical queries:

1)Instead of having a pick up in its normal position i.e. vertically picking up all strings, could I run it horizontally under a single string. What I need to know is what effect this may have on the string. Will it be to powerful and distort or feedback, or will it work. I'm looking at having a pick up on each string with 6 outs from the guitar.

2)If above is not an option are there any other ways of creating/using some form of pick up on individual strings.

I realise this all sounds a bit vague but if anyone can give me some advice it would be much apreciated.

cheers

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i have had a idea rolling around in the back of my mind for a little bit

basical build 6 small blade time pickups that would fit in a standard humbucker ring then wire them up as three small humbuckers

what intrest me is the flexability you would have

one since you would have three pickups 1 for string 1&2 another for string 3&4 and then for 5&6.

run them through three small pots for a tone stack then as ran in parallel for a low inpedance pickups if you could also play with the different windings for different strings and different magnets for different sounds you want.

but then agian it might not work.

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I'm pretty sure I have seen it done somewhere...something like that bass...but the question needs to be asked of course...why? What is the intention...

There have been a few posts about hex things lately, and over the years...but things tend not to amount to very much...

I have even thought of making something myself from time to time but it's tricky to know what or more importantly why...

For instance...it might be interesting to do six flat coils that alternate to be humbucking in a kind of p-90 kind of package or something...but then you have to consider the work involved...winding 6 coils and then wiring them all up and separate magnets and all...hmmm...sounds like a lot of work. You could do something like that with suitable relay coils but if you want separate outs more than likely they will require active circuitry. Once you get into that area, there is a lot you can do anyway without having to go hex...so again...why? It has come up with the sustainer thread also to get better individual sustain control...but then you also need all the circuitry and a hex driver too...I did follow thi9s course for a long time, but I abandoned it for similar reasons...

Otherwise, if you think you can fit six single coils side by side within the string spread of a guitar, there's no reason that it cant work. I would suggest a wide spread of them between the neck and bridge perhaps. The unusual thing would be that it would be sampling a very wide section of strings and you could get some odd cancellation effects. To test the idea, there's no reason not to wire a pickup to a jack and plug it into an amp and then hold the pickup above the string. Beware that other pickups on the guitar will affect the magnets...you may wish to try it on an acoustics high strings to avoid this for instance...

pete

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I'm pretty sure I have seen it done somewhere...something like that bass...but the question needs to be asked of course...why? What is the intention...

There have been a few posts about hex things lately, and over the years...but things tend not to amount to very much...

I have even thought of making something myself from time to time but it's tricky to know what or more importantly why...

For instance...it might be interesting to do six flat coils that alternate to be humbucking in a kind of p-90 kind of package or something...but then you have to consider the work involved...winding 6 coils and then wiring them all up and separate magnets and all...hmmm...sounds like a lot of work. You could do something like that with suitable relay coils but if you want separate outs more than likely they will require active circuitry. Once you get into that area, there is a lot you can do anyway without having to go hex...so again...why? It has come up with the sustainer thread also to get better individual sustain control...but then you also need all the circuitry and a hex driver too...I did follow thi9s course for a long time, but I abandoned it for similar reasons...

Otherwise, if you think you can fit six single coils side by side within the string spread of a guitar, there's no reason that it cant work. I would suggest a wide spread of them between the neck and bridge perhaps. The unusual thing would be that it would be sampling a very wide section of strings and you could get some odd cancellation effects. To test the idea, there's no reason not to wire a pickup to a jack and plug it into an amp and then hold the pickup above the string. Beware that other pickups on the guitar will affect the magnets...you may wish to try it on an acoustics high strings to avoid this for instance...

pete

Cheers for the replies:

My reasoning is purely experimental. I'm building a lap slide gtr and wanted to make it more 'psychedelic' than 'country'. I've got more than enough space in the body design to set the pick ups in a 2 - 1 - 2 - 1 configuration. (say one under the E & A/ one under G, one under B & E, and one under D. I'm expecting some interesting results with 6 outs running into Logic8, via an 8 in interface, being separately effected n panned. I'm also interested in what results I'll obtain strumming in directly over each pick up area.

I would like to think that each pick up would not only detect its own string but may produce some ambience from the strings near it?

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my first thougths behind the idea where a high out put low inpedance pickup you know a over wound pickup without the high resistance kill the highs

then the thought crossed my mind that a blade style pickup running parrell to the string might make some interesting sounds since the magnetic field would be manipulated in parralle with the coil instead of accross it could make a interesting pickup.

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i was thinking of crazy set ups to like setting them up as three mini humbuckers then having individual volume knobs so that you get a tone stack effect but like i said this is just the crazy stuff that pops in to my head.

ya want to hear a really crazy one thats floating up there now take a marshall 18 watt preamp with the tmb and a v/mv and instead of running it through the power tubes use the phase splitter as the power tube now you have a mini amp with all the features of a full size 18watt tmb wouldn't that be cool.

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i thought about trying this also haha. and like with the 6 outputs sending them to different pedals and haveing like individual strings distorted or some different effect that would sound crazy haha

The build has just begun so I'm gna experiment with a few 6 pick-up arrangements. I'm thinking the same thing - different pedals. Wouldnt even matter about the over spill from the other strings. That would just add to the effect. As its a lap slide there's a big gap between the body and the strings so I'm hoping to use this space to control any unwanted feed back.

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bruce bennett told me about how he took plastic bobbins for a sewing machine and wound them on the sewing machine with standard pickup wire. wired them all together so he had twelve individual coils combined to make a humbucker. I tinkered with this idea but only made six coils and parallelled it with a single side of a humbucker.

i had a friend of mine try this in high school with six single coils and he liked it i thought it was very strange. but useful on some things as an background sound. currently i am trying to work my new pickup idea taking two parrallel coils and interleaving them together so they cross in the middle for pseudo humcanceling. and putting a single alnico magnet in the middle of it.

pickupidea.jpg

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