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FDP Forum / The 'Pup' Tent / Review of the GFS 'Gold Foil' humbuckers

Peegoo
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Earth died screaming

as I lay dreaming
May 24th, 2015 02:00 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Okay, I got the major parts together and have a provisional setup on this cedar Telething that works pretty well.

I installed the GFS gold foil humbuckers with 500K volume and tone pots and an .047 tone cap, with a three-way Tele switch.

These pickups are a direct retrofit for a typical P90 "soapbar" pickup. They won't work as a replacement for the dog-ear style P90.

The quality of parts and assembly is very good.

If you're looking for true 'gold foil' tone, these really don't do it because they're not that thin sounding like the original gold foils; these have a nice full low-end tone component the originals don't.

I have two Harmony Rockets with original Rowe/DeArmond gold foils and they sound quite different from these GFS units.

This may be due to these being the humbucking version. Perhaps the single-coil version sounds truer to the originals.

But that is not really bad news because all I can say is WOW, they sound *really* good.

They're not necessarily powerful, but still big and round sounding with plenty of clean, juicy low end and top-end shimmer through the Champ and Princeton. More top-end than a Filter'tron. Less mid-rangey than a P90.

Through the Vintage 16 with the gain dialed up, these pickups offer up plenty of grunt and grit, but clean up nicely when the volume is rolled back.

It's a really hi-fi sounding pickup. If I had to compare it to any pickup I have in a guitar here, it would be the DeArmond Dynasonic pickup: big and fat when strummed hard, but still with plenty of jangle and twang when picked close to the bridge. The neck pickup is not muddy at all.

If I had used 250K pots it may have darkened the tone, but I prefer a brighter tone because you can dial it back with the tone control if needed.

If you're looking for a change of pace for your P90 guitar, give these a try. I do love the rock tone of the P90--and these are a nice alternative.

Here's a cool thing: if you don't like the cutouts that show the gold foil, use your existing P90 covers. Players will wonder how you're getting such a hi-fi tone from your P90s.

littleuch
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Florida

May 24th, 2015 02:35 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Hey Peegoo, are they quiet? How do you think they'd work in a Studio 50's LP Tribute with a Bigsby?

Peegoo
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Earth died screaming

as I lay dreaming
May 24th, 2015 03:39 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

They are dead quiet, like any well-made humbucker.

They'd work great in your 50s Tribute. Your LP will sound Gretschy.

littleuch
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Florida

May 26th, 2015 10:41 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Did you get the Alnico or Ferrite ones?

Peegoo
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Earth died screaming

as I lay dreaming
May 26th, 2015 11:55 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

The alnico model.

littleuch
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Florida

May 26th, 2015 12:09 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Cool. Kinda of tempted to try, but I have another option. I have a Warmoth Tele Thinline build that has a P90 route for the neck (has a traditional Tele pup in there now), and I still have the pickguard for it. Any way I go these days with pickups has to be noiseless due to the RF/EM madness in my condo, so I'm pondering one of the Gold Foils for the Tele neck and one of their "Neovin" noiseless pups for the bridge. I'm real happy with the Lawrence/Wilde pups in my other Tele but I'm not into the wait time.

If I recall the Studio 50's Tribute LP had 300K volume pots for the P90's and I already swapped those when I installed my Minihums.

Peegoo
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Earth died screaming

as I lay dreaming
May 26th, 2015 01:07 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Yeah, my 50s LP with P90s has 300K pots.

5Strats
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Edmond/OKC

AXE VICTIM
May 26th, 2015 01:47 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Q: Can the foil be used to fashion a hat? Thanks man! (;oD

Peegoo
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Earth died screaming

as I lay dreaming
May 26th, 2015 01:50 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Yes.

If you're the size of a G.I. Joe.

WITH kung fu grip!

neilp
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Austin TX

May 26th, 2015 02:55 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Interesting. I'm looking for a humbucking replacement for my P90 guitar, but don't really want it to sounds just like my other humbucker guitars... so maybe I'll give these a try if I don't like the ones I have ordered.

Peegoo
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Earth died screaming

as I lay dreaming
May 26th, 2015 03:06 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

These don't sound like a typical humbucker at all. They have a sweet tone when played clean.

Added: I wonder what the single-coil version sounds like. It would be nice if GFS showed the coil/magnet structure on their Website.

(This message was last edited by Peegoo at 05:07 PM, May 26th, 2015)

spud1950
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Land Of 1000 Dances

Do you know how to Pony?
May 26th, 2015 04:06 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

GFS Gold Foil P90 size single coil Alnico demo.Love the clean tone.

Sounds Great To Me

Peegoo
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Earth died screaming

as I lay dreaming
May 26th, 2015 06:22 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Dang! They got themselves a real professor!

:o)

Yeah they DO sound good. I particularly like the middle position with the clean amp setting. Sweet!

5Strats
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Edmond/OKC

AXE VICTIM
May 27th, 2015 12:12 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Tanks URoc!

littleuch
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Florida

May 27th, 2015 03:45 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Gold Foil Humbucker and Lil Puncher 10k on the way for my Thinline. I was advised by one of their techs that the Neovin wouldn't be a good match due to its lower output. Should be a fun project.

Peegoo
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Earth died screaming

as I lay dreaming
May 27th, 2015 04:32 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Cool. Keep us updated on how you like 'em!

littleuch
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Florida

May 28th, 2015 06:58 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Will do. So far every set of pickups I've tried in this particular build have sounded good or great. I wouldn't be trying this if I didn't need noiseless, but all of my activity these days is recording.

The "Lil Puncher" is a blade type pickup. I haven't tried one of those since the 90's!

littleuch
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Florida

Jun 2nd, 2015 02:24 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Just got the pickups delivered. I'm going to have to wait until I get back from a road trip to drop them in but at first glance I got a question about the Gold Foils. Mine came with two machine screws for mounting between the 2nd & 3rd, and 4th & 5th poles. My only experience with P90 mounts have been the long and skinny wood screws for direct to cavity mounting. Is there an assumption here that there is some sort of mounting plate in this cavity?

I have some traditional P90 screws in my bin, just curious.

Peegoo
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Earth died screaming

as I lay dreaming
Jun 2nd, 2015 04:40 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Many Gibson solidbody guitars that take P90 soapbars have a steel base plate in the cavity that has two threaded holes in the plate to accept the machine screws.


If you don't have the plate installed, you can either make one and thread it, or you can use the standard wood screw mounting scheme.

Steve Dallman
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Merrill, Wisconsin

Age is just a number...mine is big
Jun 22nd, 2015 02:22 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Part of the old Harmony tone was the midrange. The lack of high end and punchy midrange is the result of the low value pots they used.

My Harmony Rocket used 100k pots for volume and tone. I disconnected the midrangey pickups and wired them into 500k pots, and they changed from midrange tone, to clear, bright, chimey, brighter-than-Strat tones. 250k might have been a little better.

The 100k pots rolled off a lot of treble and lowered the resonant peak of the pickups.

FDP Forum / The 'Pup' Tent / Review of the GFS 'Gold Foil' humbuckers




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