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Epiphone Casino hum


heave1
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My 2009 Epiphone Casino seems to have a louder than normal 60 cycle hum.  It's not the cord or the amp?  Do all hollowbody guitars with single coil P90 pickups hum like this?  Is there anything I can do about the hum?

Edited by heave1
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  • 1 year later...

We picked up an Epiphone Casino 2019 model this Christmas and I have the same question.  The amp seems to hum annoyingly at most times.  Moving the guitar angle and position within the room in relation to the amp does increase/decrease the hum.  Is this "normal" or is it something that can be minimized or remedied.  Hoping some experienced folks on this site can enlighten us on this one.  Thanks in advance.

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P90's because of being such a heavily wound single coil, with 2 or 3 times as many windings as a typical Fender single coil. The trick with P90's is to back off the tone pots and volume on the the guitar and turn down the amount of treble and mids until you hear the hum reduce. Including not running the input gain too high. Basically you have to tweak your amp to reduce hum for P90's, so the settings will be different from what you use for HB's. Also the guitar proximity to your amp, the guitar acts like an antenna in front of your amp , the farther away or out of direct line of the amp. 

Reversing the magnetic polarity on one of the P90's, most commonly the the neck PU, so when you have both PU's on you get hum cancelling. This is done by dissembling the P90 very carefully and flipping the coil. Marking the magnets and reversing them, note that when reassembling the magnets they will be in opposing fields trying to push apart. This creates a single magnetic field. There is no change to the wiring. 

Or---- you acquire an aftermarket P90 that is already in reverse magnetic polarity. Most manufacturers are building their P90 guitars with one PU in reverse polarity for hum cancelling when both PU's are on. Gibson and Epiphone do not normally do this.

P90's are inherently effected by magnetic fields, florescent lights, bad electrical ground and microphonic guitar cords.

I use P90's exclusively in all of my guitars, they are tone machines and are not too difficult to learn to control, but nothing else sounds like them.

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My 339 with aftermarket HB sized P90's with the neck PU in reverse magnetic polarity.

Edited by mihcmac
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Thanks mihcmac for the thorough answer.  My son says he "doesn't mind the hum" but it is frankly annoying to listen to for the "audience" (The wife and I).  I've explained some of the options such as shielding the cavities (if that's even available for a full hollow-body), gates, and reversing the magnets in one of the pickups as you've outlined above.  As I understand it, that's basically what a humbucker is, two single coils adjacent to each other but with the magnet poles reversed on one of them.  Being pretty technical and handy, it seems like a project I can handle with success but his main concern is that reversing the polarity of the neck pickup magnet would affect the native P90 tone/sound that the Casino is known for.  (and thus sounding less like John Lennon and the Beatles of course 🙂 )  BTW - NIce 339 in all its Natural Beauty!!!

 

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5 hours ago, guitar_newb said:

Thanks mihcmac for the thorough answer.  My son says he "doesn't mind the hum" but it is frankly annoying to listen to for the "audience" (The wife and I).  I've explained some of the options such as shielding the cavities (if that's even available for a full hollow-body), gates, and reversing the magnets in one of the pickups as you've outlined above.  As I understand it, that's basically what a humbucker is, two single coils adjacent to each other but with the magnet poles reversed on one of them.  Being pretty technical and handy, it seems like a project I can handle with success but his main concern is that reversing the polarity of the neck pickup magnet would affect the native P90 tone/sound that the Casino is known for.  (and thus sounding less like John Lennon and the Beatles of course 🙂 )  BTW - NIce 339 in all its Natural Beauty!!!

Note that Fenders with their native single coil pickups tend to be just as noisy, performers tend to shut off the volume on the guitar when not playing which should kill all of the noise. I haven't noticed any tone difference when the coils are reversed, but if he has a preferred pickup that is used more frequently, you can reverse the other pickup so his favorite would be untouched.

Also to check the polarity, place a compass next to each pickup and if the needle swings to the same pole, they are in the same polarity, if one goes opposite then it is reversed.

Also note that the Casino P90's chassis has a tab on each end that is soldered to the cover, making it more difficult to disassemble.

Edited by mihcmac
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His other electric guitar is a Fender Squire that has 1 humbucker but can also be switched to single coil when doing so, it hums as well.  Guess it's less noticeable since there's the humbucker option for it.  Thanks for the tip of detecting polarity via magnet and also for letting me know about the soldered tab should we decide to go that route with the P90 magnet reversal.  First thing I may try is buying a braided shield cable (I've gone for the inexpensive foil shielded ones previously)  and maybe a cheap humbuster device off of Amazon.  Like this:  Pyle Passive DI Unit Hum Eliminator - or- another Passive DI-Box Unit Hum Eliminator type device.  Some people seem to be having some level of success with them.  If they don't work out, just return it and try again.  Thanks again for your responses, really appreciate the help.

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Depending on which Casino you've got & which Pickups... The Asian P90's are louder than USA P90's in my 3 different Cadinos..

Definitely learning how to work the Volume & Tone controls on the Guitar, as well as Amp,  will help & also make your Son a better Guitarist..

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