Disclaimer: Right up front, I don’t know “vintage P-90” tone from personal experience. But…if it’s like this pickup, I’m digging it.
This is a straight-ahead, no baloney, get-it-done sort of pickup. And that’s cool. You can find 1,001 places for P-90 aficionados to lay down the origins of the P-90 style pickup…so I’m not going to waste your time, outside of saying that you’re pretty much getting a sweet spot between a single coil and a humbucker.
Both positions are well-defined and articulate. They are voiced so that you get a very usable tone, no matter a clean or a dirty amp setting. Going from the bridge to the neck and to the middle positions, all the tones were just right. Going from big open chords to aggressive riff rock to heavy blues to plucky staccato single note lines….I really like what this set can deliver. Being so used to regular humbuckers, the voicing and variety encouraged me to re-visit a lot of licks from the repertoire, as these pickups can deliver both chime and grind.
The neck position has an alnico 4 magnet and presents a tone that is both big and well-defined. The bridge position, with an alnico 5, can be focused in the highs and deliver a controlled low end. Both are wound with vintage spec plain enamel wire.
As with a P-90, there is no hum-canceling. The output may technically be on the vintage side, but it “feels” like there is more there. When I asked MojoTone about these aspects, there are plans for a noiseless model and a hot model. I think it’d be cool to have a model that is both noiseless and hot….just keep that same voicing, as it’s groovy.
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Darth Phineas is a long time music industry insider who provides his readers with unbiased reviews on musical instrument and guitar gear. You can read more of his reviews and check out industry news on his Facebook community Darth Phineas, Twitter or his website is darthphineas.com