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How to tell what pickups you have?

#1 User is offline   NoFrills 

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Posted 19 September 2011 - 10:38 PM

Is there supposed to be any obvious labeling on the pickups to know what pickups you have?

Since being on this forum I have found each model of a specific guitar changes material and specs over the years to various degrees.
Now I am not sure what pickups I have in my Led Paul Studio Lite.

I know the bridge pickup has Gibson USA machine pressed into the back of the pickup but still unsure if it is actually a 500T or a 498T as it looks identical to a studio in everyway visually besides having balsa in the body.

#2 User is offline   vincentw 

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Posted 26 September 2011 - 04:02 PM

There's no easy way to tell. Start with the general specs the model came with then look at the pole-piece spacing on the neck/bridge. Usually we can narrow it down, as long as the pickups are original.

#3 User is offline   damian 

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Posted 27 September 2011 - 02:36 PM

This brings up an interesting question Vincent; Why doesn't Gibson label their pickups ???
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#4 User is offline   tazzboy 

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Posted 27 September 2011 - 02:45 PM

Post some pictures and a serial number that will help narrow do for the c/s team.
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#5 User is offline   big red 

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Posted 13 November 2011 - 08:48 PM

View Postdamian, on 27 September 2011 - 02:36 PM, said:

This brings up an interesting question Vincent; Why doesn't Gibson label their pickups ???



Yeah! Why isn't Gibson stamping there pups with model #'s? There aint no way to tell a 490t/498t apart, let alone the other models.

#6 User is offline   Victory Pete 

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Posted 08 January 2014 - 05:32 AM

Once again I am baffled by Gibson's lack of logic. You would think they would label their pickups. I have been confused many times by what pick ups are in a particular guitar. Especially considering the marketing for the many different pick ups they make these days, it is the 21 century after all.

#7 User is offline   Cú Chulainn 

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Posted 08 January 2014 - 11:30 AM

well, atleast you can tell if they're DirtyFingers or not [biggrin]
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#8 User is offline   drzing 

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Posted 03 February 2014 - 03:43 AM

Oh there is a HUGE difference between a 490/498T!

Think of the 490 series as the "P90's of the humbuckers". The best for clean sounds, and the worst for
heavy sounds.

The 498T has considerable more output, more crunch, more sustain and better harmonics, will be much heavier,
and is unmistakable, actually. Its that classic early KISS sound, for example.

For me, the only way to be sure is to play it.
A test instrument, as to see for its output also tells you much about the pickup.

There are some tables, I've seen before, but each pickup output varies a lot from its production year, how old it is, so I
prefer just to feel and hear it.

#9 User is offline   Victory Pete 

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Posted 03 February 2014 - 04:03 AM

View Postdrzing, on 03 February 2014 - 03:43 AM, said:

Oh there is a HUGE difference between a 490/498T!

Think of the 490 series as the "P90's of the humbuckers". The best for clean sounds, and the worst for
heavy sounds.

The 498T has considerable more output, more crunch, more sustain and better harmonics, will be much heavier,
and is unmistakable, actually. Its that classic early KISS sound, for example.

For me, the only way to be sure is to play it.
A test instrument, as to see for its output also tells you much about the pickup.

There are some tables, I've seen before, but each pickup output varies a lot from its production year, how old it is, so I
prefer just to feel and hear it.


I would like to invite you to a tone test with my Gibson collection. I prefer to just read a label on each pick up.

#10 User is offline   FZ Fan 

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Posted 03 February 2014 - 11:35 AM

View Postdrzing, on 03 February 2014 - 03:43 AM, said:

Oh there is a HUGE difference between a 490/498T!

Think of the 490 series as the "P90's of the humbuckers". The best for clean sounds, and the worst for
heavy sounds.

The 498T has considerable more output, more crunch, more sustain and better harmonics, will be much heavier,
and is unmistakable, actually. Its that classic early KISS sound, for example.

For me, the only way to be sure is to play it.
A test instrument, as to see for its output also tells you much about the pickup.

There are some tables, I've seen before, but each pickup output varies a lot from its production year, how old it is, so I
prefer just to feel and hear it.


I have 490's in my BB King and it sounds great with OD and Dist.

#11 User is offline   marvar 

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Posted 05 February 2014 - 03:10 PM

I suppose Gibson doesn't label them, because they don't feel like it? who knows why [cursing]
I took the trouble to ohm out all the pickups I have, and wrote that on the back of it with a sharpie. You can find dc resistance charts on the net-
Since I'm known to change mags, I note that on the back of the pup too.



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