Humbuckers pickups don’t really need an introduction. Heard on countless of records, those pickups are equally as popular as the single coil pickups (usually found on Fender guitars such as Stratocaster, Telecaster and so on). Thanks to their double coil design running in series (to prevent the typical “hum” heard on single coils) and higher output, Humbucker pickups are usually associated with powerful genres of music. The sound is a little bit darker, more compressed and more bass heavy compared to a single coil pickup. However, during the years, manufacturer managed to build several variations based on the original design. Today we present you 5 types of Humbuckers and we will compare them sound-wise. Go Kris!
Humbucker pickups have a creamy sound with a little bit of sparkle, perfect for most uses. Those pickups are generally found on the majority of guitars.
EMG active pickups have a built-in pre-amplifier that drives the pickup coils, resulting in a cleaner, dryer and more compressed signal, key features for metal players that rely on those kind of pickups since ages.
Humbucker in Single Coil format have been developed for providing more “meat” for Telecaster and Stratocaster guitar players. Depending on the guitar (as heard with the Richie Kotzen Telecaster), they can still have the “twang” despite the output and power)
Finally, Gretsch Filtertron pickups have a distinctive sound which can be only explained as the “typical” Gretsch sound – a thinner and lower output Humbucker with plenty of attack and a rather extreme open sound.
Gibson Les Paul Standard T 2017 BLB (Traditional pickups)
Diamond Guitars Bolero STF TR (Active Pickups)
Gibson LP Pete Townshend Deluxe 76 (Mini Humbuckers)
Fender Kotzen Telecaster BSB (Humbucker in single coil format)
Gretsch G5422T Electromatic OS (Filtertron pickups)