Wow... SG Special with minis...

Discussion in 'Gibson SG' started by Dale, Apr 16, 2019.

  1. Col Mustard

    Col Mustard Well-Known Member

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    thanks for that... I'll try mine again tomorrow or the next day.
    I didn't think to crank the tone pot wide open too... but I will
    pay more attention to it. The cable in the Jack method seems
    easy and nearly fool proof, as long as we do our part.

    The readings from the other hum buckers all seem accurate,
    and just what one would expect from those particular p'ups.
    good answer!
     
  2. AngelDeVille

    AngelDeVille Well-Known Member

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    I got a yngwie strat and the stacked “single coils” are around 23k and they sound pretty much like Fender single coils under 9k.
     
  3. Dale

    Dale Well-Known Member

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    It sounds like the volume pot was not fully open, or has a slight rolled operation at full open.
     
  4. arcticsg

    arcticsg Well-Known Member

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    [UPDATE] Well, I finally took the control panel cover off and found that the neck pup pub connector was only partially on. I checked the ohms and it was at a steady 17.3 ohms.

    So now my 2017 Special reads:

    17.3 Ohms = Neck
    23.8 Ohms = Bridge

    Much better :smile:

    On a side note, I assume these mini hums with 4 wires and a ground are capable of being wired for coil split

    [​IMG]
     
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  5. LeoFGibson

    LeoFGibson New Member

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    I, too, am curious about the possibility of coil-splitting the mini-hums. Standing by...
     
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  6. LeoFGibson

    LeoFGibson New Member

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    Oh, my, that is one purdie guitar!
     
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  7. Steve D

    Steve D Well-Known Member

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  8. Huntroll

    Huntroll Active Member

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    I was lucky enough to buy a PCB assembly from a full size humbucker equipped 2019 SG HP-II.
    I then installed the circuit board in my 2016 mini-humbucker SG HP.
    Plugged it in, and for the first time, listened to mini-humbuckers in standard and single coil mode.
    I can pull up the volume knob for either pickup to hear the difference.
    Depending on the PCB DIP setting, one of the pickup's coils will be shorted across or reversed in polarity.
    A word of warning - the control cavity cover now has a 1/4 inch gap under it, because of the taller components. I plan on modifying the cover eventually.

    I guess you could rig a small toggle switch to short across one of the coils to accomplish single coil mode on the fly, to see if it appeals to you.

    To me it sounds awesome.

    I don't know why Gibson or anyone else hasn't pursued the ability. I lucked upon it.

    Sound wise, I think its most similar to the small rhythm pickup on a stock telecaster.

    And putting the rhythm pickup in single coil mode along with the bridge pickup standard, is most useful.

    Next option would be both pickups on, in single coil mode.

    This issuse is also a sore one for the folks that think PC boards suck.

    I think they're great, needless to say.
     
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2019
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  9. LeoFGibson

    LeoFGibson New Member

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    Oh, man, Huntroll, what you describe for tones with this setup is what I am hearing in my head (along with a few voices we won’t discuss here...). Very cool shortcut to making split coils happen on the mini-hums!
     
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  10. LeoFGibson

    LeoFGibson New Member

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  11. Steve D

    Steve D Well-Known Member

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    Huntroll's earlier post inspired me to go look on ebay to price a SG HP PCB out of curiosity. There are a few but they are more expensive than I'd expected, over $100. People throw these things away according to all the forum posts so I figured someone might have one in the $30-50 range. I thought it would be an interesting experiment at that level and if it would fit in the cavity depth I might even consider just doing it for the $100+ because I'm intrigued. But it's just a bit beyond what I would like to pay. Maybe I'll see another for less and will give your approach a shot, I like the simplicity.
     
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  12. Huntroll

    Huntroll Active Member

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    On the pickup's mini connector socket, its the pin 4 and 5 node, (that's opposite the shield), that gets shorted to ground to force the pickup into SINGLE COIL MODE, (SCM).

    A simple single pole, single throw, (SPST) switch is all it would take per pickup to get it done.

    You could remove the stock pot and install a pot/switch assembly, wire the switch to node 4/5 and ground, connected when pulled up for SCM.

    I plan on doing this to another guitar as time permits.

    I've seen metric 500k ohm b (linear) taper with DPDT switch assemblies that would do the job and have extra switch contacts to spare. But then there's the knob issue.

    The other post about adding SERIES/PARALLEL switching uses a CTS brand, double pole, double throw, (DPDT) pot-switch assembly. I believe they were purchased somewhere new.

    I will be on the lookout for USA made 500k/b taper w/SPST switch of the appropriate thread length to make the job neater etc. (They could be removed from other less desirable PCB assemblies).

    Here's an opportunity for the OEM or wiring harness replacement folks to offer a retrofit kit with all the stuff needed, (w/instructions).

    In the meantime, shorting node 4/5 to ground will demonstrate each pickups SCM effect.

    Enjoy !
     
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  13. PermissionToLand

    PermissionToLand Well-Known Member

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    I'm no electronics expert, but shouldn't the red be on the lead and black be on the ground? I wouldn't think it would read anything that way though... IDK

    I've been trying to figure this out for the wiki, so this thread has been helpful. There are at least two variations going by Gibson's specs; the "Dual Blade" minis used on the 2012 '70s Tribute, and the 495s. Despite being labeled "Tribute" underneath in 2016, the official website specs list calls them 495s and says they have "Alnico II Deluxe" magnets. Not sure what the "Deluxe" means, but I would assume it just denotes a different magnet size for minis. It claims output of 17k neck and 26k bridge for these. The 2018 is listed as having 495s, but based on my research, there is much debate over whether they have Ceramic magnets or not. The 2012 Dual Blades are listed as Alnico II.

    AngelDeville: 2018 Special - 16+

    Dale: 2018 Special - 16 & 25k

    ArcticSG: 2018 Special - 17 & 24k

    Firebird 495s on Reverb - 16 & 25k

    Derald: 2012 70’s Tribute - 6.9k

    Col Mustard: 2012 '70s Tribute - 13 & 25k (using output jack method)

    Maybe output jack method is simply the most reliable and the two sub-7k readings were flukes somehow. Or maybe Col's reading was the fluke. The 2012s could be lower output, or maybe they're just wired parallel.

    Being high output doesn't mean a pickup will have mud or fizz. It just means it has stronger signal, assuming all else is equal. When comparing to your Golden Age HB, all things are very much NOT equal. The GA uses 43AWG wire for starters, which is thicker than the typical 42AWG. That increases output. Also, it uses an Alnico 5 magnet, which is much stronger than the Alnico II magnet in your mini HBs.
     
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  14. cerebral gasket

    cerebral gasket Well-Known Member

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    Short answer: Resistance has no polarity.
     
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2019
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  15. Col Mustard

    Col Mustard Well-Known Member

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    All in all, this is a very interesting thread... lots of arcane wizardry
    and obscure lore. Love it.

    My reading above is likely to be the fluke, because I confess to being careless
    about the position of my volume & tone knobs. I'll repeat my measurement again
    making sure the pots are fully open, and then I expect my readings to
    conform to others observations.

    It's my belief that Gibson would NOT indulge in building odd pickups with
    random resistance and keep the specs secret. I believe they would design
    one Mini hum and a guitar to install it in, and then market that instrument
    based on their perception of player demand. Nothing else makes sense.
    IF they identified another different market for a hotter pickup, they might design and offer an "improved" model.

    And I appreciate all this effort on the part of my colleagues aboard here,
    I've learned a lot about the fine guitar that has intrigued me since I first saw
    Gibson's marketing blurb about it, back in 2012.

    I also appreciate the open minded approach that permeates this thread.
    No Gibson bashing, just "let's see what we can do with this gizmo"
    which is near to my heart. My 2012 Gibson has traditional wiring, which
    works fine. I'm sure that part of the suspicion guitarists have for the PCB
    is due to the fact that it's different. Guys understand traditional wiring,
    ...it's all right there, straightforward, and we have good diagrams
    published.

    It seems like a great suggestion for the suppliers of wiring harness
    to offer mods on the PCB that can be understood and utilized by musicians
    who don't happen to be electronics engineers.
     
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  16. Huntroll

    Huntroll Active Member

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    Here's an option to consider -

    If your mini plug has gone bad and you're using one of those Gibson mini plug to screw terminal adapter jumper assemblies, ( AKA Gibson quick connect adapter cable ), you could easily connect either coil to the GROUND ( pin 2 ) and HOT ( pin 3 ) screw terminals to hear how it sounds.
    You could even try hooking the coils up in parallel !
    Or add an in-line 9 volt boost circuit, endless possibilities !

    * Make sure that you connect the correct color wires for you specific pickup. *

    Gibson's COIL COLOR CODE :

    COIL A :

    WHITE +

    RED -

    COIL B :

    BLACK +

    GREEN -

    Not to mention you could also wire a mini toggle switch to the screw terminals along with all the pickup leads.

    For example -

    GIBSON 2016 SG HP/GIBSON MINI-HUMBUCKER CONNECTIONS:

    NECK PICKUP:

    PIN 5 - WHITE (TAP)

    PIN 4 - GREEN (TAP) (and SPST toggle switch* contact A)

    PIN 3 - RED (HOT)

    PIN 2 - BLACK (GROUND) (and SPST toggle switch* contact B)

    PIN 1 - SHIELD (GROUND)

    * if used.


    BRIDGE:

    PIN 5 - RED (TAP)

    PIN 4 - BLACK (TAP) (and SPST toggle switch* contact A)

    PIN 3 - WHITE (HOT)

    PIN 2 - GREEN (GROUND) (and SPST toggle switch* contact B)

    PIN 1 - SHIELD (GROUND)

    * if used.
     
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2019
  17. S.Ustain

    S.Ustain Active Member

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    Nothing wrong with baked maple -- it's just that other materials are better. For most, the difference is irrelevant. I like the look of the darkened (conditioned) version.
     
  18. Huntroll

    Huntroll Active Member

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    In post #92,

    I had the A and B designation of LINEAR and AUDIO taper pots backwards.

    Should be:

    AUDIO taper = type A

    LINEAR tape= type B

    Sorry about the mistakes.

    Although I have seen type B pots used for volume controls.
     
  19. cerebral gasket

    cerebral gasket Well-Known Member

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    I actually favor those 300K Linear Taper pots for volume controls.
     
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  20. Col Mustard

    Col Mustard Well-Known Member

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    Okay, so I'd like to hear about why you like the 300K Linear Taper pots for the volume.

    I've been wondering about this off and on for a long time. Because Gibson installed them for a reason. I just don't know what it is. So obviously the Gibson designers and
    product testers like them too. I'd like to read your opinion of the difference between
    300k, and 500k. Or is it the linear taper that gets your allegiance. I do understand
    that.

    I looked it up, not long after I came aboard here in like 2009. There was a lot of discussion on this forum about Gibson pots... 300k vs 500k: The consensus seemed to be that Gibson
    pots were crap, or cheap junk, and real men always replaced the stock pots with
    Bournes or CTS or something else, but they had to be 500K. I looked up the original
    design, from Seth Lover. He specified 500K for hum buckers.

    I read all that, and thought about it, and wondered why Gibson designers and engineers
    and product testers would make a decision to install something that (supposedly) wasn't any good... or that didn't render great tone.
    I personally didn't believe that they would. So I wondered at all the Gibson hate on a
    forum dedicated to Gibson SG guitars. I still do.

    Members here described the tone of their SGs as 'muddy' with 300k pots.
    I really didn't get that either, since I tend to twist knobs until I like what I hear.
    And I don't seem to have any trouble getting good tone from any Gibson or Fender
    electric guitar. Or Epiphone either. My Tele does NOT seem twangy to my ear,
    and my Epiphones are not harsh, and my Gibsons are not muddy or shrill.

    So tell us all, what is it about the 300k pot that would be better than the 500k
    which is traditional? I hope this post didn't sound snarky or sarcastic, because that's
    not how I meant it. I'm curious about what everyone thinks. I have 500K pots on
    all my hum bucker guitars, and love the tone. So I'm not likely to rip them out
    but I'm still curious.
     

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