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  #1  
Old 12-05-2018, 02:06 PM
slewis slewis is offline
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Default What to do about hot levels on B & E strings?

(I'm sure I posted before on this topic but I can't find it... sorry for the redundancy!)

I have a Godin 5th Avenue Kingpin guitar with two of their P-90 pickups on it. I've had it a while but never played it plugged-in much until lately. The volume of the B and E strings is significantly hotter than all the other strings which is a pain in the butt. I've messed around with lowering the pickups for these strings and heard no difference, really. Otherwise I'm no pickup technician, trust me. Is it a bad pickup? Is there a repair/adjustment that can be done? Do I need new pickup(s)? Thanks for whatever you can tell me!
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  #2  
Old 12-05-2018, 07:23 PM
slewis slewis is offline
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Bueller?..... Bueller?......”
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Old 12-05-2018, 08:54 PM
YamahaGuy YamahaGuy is online now
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Is this true for both pickups?

Have you tried flipping the pickups around?

I had a guitar that I didn't like the way the pickups sat in the framework so I flipped them around. Easy enough to do.

I don't think it's necessarily a broken pickup.

Are the pole pieces adjustable?
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  #4  
Old 12-05-2018, 09:38 PM
slewis slewis is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by YamahaGuy View Post
Is this true for both pickups?
Have you tried flipping the pickups around?
I had a guitar that I didn't like the way the pickups sat in the framework so I flipped them around. Easy enough to do.
I don't think it's necessarily a broken pickup.
Are the pole pieces adjustable?
Haven’t tried anything other than adjusting the individual pickup pole pieces (straight-slot screw heads) under the strings downward (a LOT). I noticed no difference even though I’ve heard to do this with caution because even a little adjustment can make a difference. Not sure what you mean about flipping them around. You mean reversing the order, 1 through 6 to 6 through 1? I have no problem with “how they fit in the framework.”
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Old 12-05-2018, 10:01 PM
jonfields45 jonfields45 is offline
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You wouldn't happen to be using bronze strings?
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  #6  
Old 12-06-2018, 04:13 AM
121 121 is offline
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I use to have a 5th Ave but only with the one P90 neck pickup.
I had no noticeable string volume imbalance with the D'Addario Chrome Flat Wounds I used.
The individual pickup poles were all adjusted to the same level.
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  #7  
Old 12-07-2018, 12:45 AM
shufflebeat shufflebeat is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jonfields45 View Post
You wouldn't happen to be using bronze strings?
This question should be considered before proceeding.
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Old 12-07-2018, 03:22 AM
YamahaGuy YamahaGuy is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slewis View Post
Haven’t tried anything other than adjusting the individual pickup pole pieces (straight-slot screw heads) under the strings downward (a LOT). I noticed no difference even though I’ve heard to do this with caution because even a little adjustment can make a difference. Not sure what you mean about flipping them around. You mean reversing the order, 1 through 6 to 6 through 1? I have no problem with “how they fit in the framework.”
By flipping them around I mean taking the pickup and turning it 180 degrees. I see a name stamped on them though, so for aesthetic reasons you probably wouldn't want to do that. As others have said, using phosphorous acoustic strings seems a likely culprit, especially since this is posted in the acoustic amplification section. Your guitar seems to be more of an electric guitar than acoustic, and thusly should be using steel strings to work with the magnetic pickups as they should.
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  #9  
Old 12-08-2018, 09:05 AM
slewis slewis is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shufflebeat View Post
This question should be considered before proceeding.
Forgot what I had on there originally, with the same problem. I now have Martin Retro Monels on it and the problem hasn’t changed at all as far as I can tell. They’re made with “a long-lasting proprietary nickel-based alloy blend.” Is that an issue?
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Godin Duet Ambience Nylon | 1965 Gibson LG1 | Fender '62 Reissue Jazz Bass | Fender American Standard Strat
Seagull SWS Maritime Mini-Jumbo | Guild B140 Acoustic Bass | Blackbird Rider Steel | Go Grande Mahogany | Godin A8 mandolin

Last edited by slewis; 12-08-2018 at 09:19 AM.
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  #10  
Old 12-08-2018, 09:14 AM
slewis slewis is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by YamahaGuy View Post
By flipping them around I mean taking the pickup and turning it 180 degrees. I see a name stamped on them though, so for aesthetic reasons you probably wouldn't want to do that. As others have said, using phosphorous acoustic strings seems a likely culprit, especially since this is posted in the acoustic amplification section. Your guitar seems to be more of an electric guitar than acoustic, and thusly should be using steel strings to work with the magnetic pickups as they should.
Ah yes, understood. See above reply for the strings I have on it right now (Martin Retro Monels). And yes it is an “acoustic” guitar being amplified — isn’t this the right section?

I did also find a post from 2013 from Archtop Guy that said “I've had acoustic strings on my '77 L-5C with a Lollar Johnny Smith PU, for the majority of time I've played it. The steel core of the strings are still magnetic, but the wrap is not, so the plain E and B strings come out louder than the low strings. By adjusting the PU pole pieces you can eliminate >90% of the variation, and you can use your fingers to eliminate the rest...”

The same problem I’m having, but I did adjust the pole pieces a lot and nothing changed, even with Martin Retros, that seem to work for many others just fine. Feeling like a real bonehead on this!
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Seagull SWS Maritime Mini-Jumbo | Guild B140 Acoustic Bass | Blackbird Rider Steel | Go Grande Mahogany | Godin A8 mandolin

Last edited by slewis; 12-08-2018 at 09:49 AM.
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  #11  
Old 12-08-2018, 11:04 AM
YamahaGuy YamahaGuy is online now
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I wouldn't lose any sleep over it. You should see how many people try (and do) string up classical guitars with steel strings. So using nickel or phosphor strings on a thick hollow bodied guitar with humbuckers is something I'm sure many people do by mistake.

Sweet Godin, too, by the way.
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  #12  
Old 12-08-2018, 12:19 PM
jonfields45 jonfields45 is offline
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Monel is an alloy that is mostly nickel but can have a significant amount of copper (not magnetic). Also Nickel is not as magnetic as iron (steel). Martin is not likely going say what they are using but a set of electric guitar strings would be a cheap experiment. I would try nickel plated steel strings, the most common type of electric guitar string and likely the most magnetic. The nickel plate is to keep the steel from rusting as stainless steel is more expensive and can be less to not magnetic.

https://physics.stackexchange.com/qu...th-to-a-magnet
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  #13  
Old 12-09-2018, 08:49 AM
slewis slewis is offline
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Thanks, all. I took the guitar in yesterday to Mike Lull — local legend guitar guy — and he adjusted the other pole pieces upward and was amazed, as I was, at how much they had to be raised in order to equalize the signal from each string. And that’s with my having already drastically lowered the E and B strings’ poles. I’ll post a pic of it soon. Good point, too, that other string types may well require a totally different adjustment on each pole piece. Crazy...my education continues....
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Composite Acoustics GX | Larrivee LV-03E | Godin 5th Avenue Kingpin II | Breedlove N250CR
Godin Duet Ambience Nylon | 1965 Gibson LG1 | Fender '62 Reissue Jazz Bass | Fender American Standard Strat
Seagull SWS Maritime Mini-Jumbo | Guild B140 Acoustic Bass | Blackbird Rider Steel | Go Grande Mahogany | Godin A8 mandolin
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  #14  
Old 12-11-2018, 09:24 AM
slewis slewis is offline
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Here are two shots across the pickups, under the strings. You don't see the B and E string pole pieces (on the far side) because they're already screwed down below the flush surface of the pickup! And as you can see, the other strings here are adjusted in a real erratic way -- but this is the setting that gets all the strings to be at the same volume. Pretty crazy....



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...SeanLewisMusic..>>..Find me HERE on iTunes

Composite Acoustics GX | Larrivee LV-03E | Godin 5th Avenue Kingpin II | Breedlove N250CR
Godin Duet Ambience Nylon | 1965 Gibson LG1 | Fender '62 Reissue Jazz Bass | Fender American Standard Strat
Seagull SWS Maritime Mini-Jumbo | Guild B140 Acoustic Bass | Blackbird Rider Steel | Go Grande Mahogany | Godin A8 mandolin
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  #15  
Old 12-11-2018, 03:23 PM
jonfields45 jonfields45 is offline
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If that bothers you, then you need to try electric guitar strings. There are pure nickel wrap strings available for electric guitar (Fender 150s for example) that might be enough more magnetic than monel to get those screws back down, and still sound a little better acoustically than the main stream nickel plated steel electric strings. I am sure nickel plated steel will let you put the screws (nearly?) all the way down.
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RainSong CH-PA1100NS, Mi-Si Trio (Baggs Element), Elixir PB 10s, TKL 8975 Case & Access 3/4 Stage 1 gig bag, set up to cover electric guitar riffs
RainSong CO-PA1100NS, Schatten Passive HFN into Boss GE-7 (required), Elixir 80/20 Polyweb 12s, TKL 8975 Case
One QSC CP8 (21 lbs) high/behind & Yamaha MG10XU mixer, Fishman Rare Earth Humbucker backup in gig bag

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