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MHS pickups

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Are the MHS pickups at all similar or related to the Custom Shop Custombuckers?

Sorry nobody answered. In my opinion, no. I’ve watched a video by Memphis staff where the guy said they were made in-house in Memphis. The first 4 guitars I’ve bought that came with them sound absolutely nothing like Custombuckers. In fact I love Custombuckers but have absolutely hated all 4 sets of MHS. They were very muddy, wooly yet has a crazy amount of string noise while having little highs. Played clean, with the bass knob off, not too bad, I kept them in my ES-175 and switched to flatwounds.

 

Now surprisingly, I just picked up a figured 335 with MHS and they sound great.....so I can’t say they all sound bad to me. The new guitar still has excessive string noise, call it air, but is much clearer overall with more usable high midrange tones.

 

Do they sound like Custombuckers? No way. In my opinion Custombuckers are the best sounding pickup, period.

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Funny, I have the MHS pups on a LP-ES and they're excellent, but on an ES-275 semi which I sent back the bridge was 1/2 the volume of the neck pup. Invariably most who review them like the MHS quite a bit.

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I have the MHS pickups in my 2015 ES-Les Paul, and I think they sound fantastic. That being said, other than my PRS Custom 24, and a '72 Les Paul Deluxe, I have nothing else to compare them to. Ive been playing a G&L Asat classic and a Fender EJ Strat for years, and had forgotten how much fun a Les Paul can be again.Of course, its all subjective, but most players have been pleased with the pickups and I do get compliments on the tone of my guitar.

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Funny, I have the MHS pups on a LP-ES and they're excellent, but on an ES-275 semi which I sent back the bridge was 1/2 the volume of the neck pup. Invariably most who review them like the MHS quite a bit.

 

It could've been as simple as adjusting the Pickup height...

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Most of the MHS comps I've seen and personally observed have been to Burstbuckers, which have been the pups alternatively used in recent years non-reissue ES-335 models.

Muddy, lack of clarity being the form of criticism of the MHS relative to the BBs. But I think a couple factors come into play along with pup height already mentioned.

1. I think BBs are brighter pups.

2. Titanium saddles accentuate the brightness, especially as opposed to nylon saddles which can greatly contribute to the relative muteness of the MHS pups.

BUT

From those (not me) that have a lot of experience with vintage ES-335s, the reissues ('58, '59, '64 and probably others) that have MHS pups and nylon saddles virtually nail the vintage sound. That tells me that Gibson knew what they were doing with the reissues. The "problem" is that some much better like the brighter sound. I can't blame them, but that doesn't mean that it is "better" and doesn't make it historically accurate. But once again, I think Gibson recognizes that also, and that probably why the non-reissues have what they have and sound like they sound.

Some have found the sound they want with the reissues with nylon saddles by simply replacing the nylon saddles with titanium ones.

 

Me? I love the MHS pups.

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It could've been as simple as adjusting the Pickup height...

 

Nope, even with the bridge nearly touching the strings the bridge pup was worthless.

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Well.......

 

I have MHS in my 2018 ES-335.

I have CustomBuckers in my 2016 R9.

I have Burstbuckers in my 2009 R9.

 

I find that the CustomBuckers are the brightest, almost thin, sounding of the three. The Burstbuckers are smooth....with fairly even response across the spectrum. The MHS have the rawest, most organic, sound.

 

I have to say that, in my own little opinion, the MHS are the best of the three. They really do deliver a "vintage" tone very much like the recordings of guitar from the 60s - 70s.

 

Memphis Historic Spec. I think they nailed it.

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The reason I bought my 2016 ES Les Paul was for the MHS pups. I think they sound fabulous. Sorry I can't comment on Custom Buckers, and BB's are too bright for my liking (I'm seeing a pattern in this thread - if you like BB's, you won't care for the MHS... :))

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New to the forum... I have a 2018 Es Traditional in Antique Sunset Burst.   The MHS pickups sound incredible in my opinion .  I'm an old guy who grew up with 50's Gibsons ( My first electric was a 59 dot neck bought in 1966 )   I have owned several newer 335's over the past 20 years and this is the first guitar that really nails the vintage sound and feel.   I an extremely happy with them. 

Not so sure about the titanium saddles, and may switch to nylon.

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