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Guitars with P90s and the Helix


marmatkat
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Hi All. I have a '93 Hamer Special with Lollar P90s, and I wonder how you've adapted your Helix tones to P90s. I've found two main issues: noise (except in humbucker mode) and a bridge pickup that's weaker than the neck one. For the noise I always enable the input block's gate (with default settings). I haven't tried using the gate block instead (at different points in the chain). For the weaker pickup, maybe that's a question for a guitar forum, but it would help if you could comment on if this is something you've had to account for in your presets. For example, do you have a gain block or compressor that you punch in when using that pickup? Also, do you have the input pad ON? And how has this affected your amps' gain settings? Thanks! -- matt

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Hi All. I have a '93 Hamer Special with Lollar P90s, and I wonder how you've adapted your Helix tones to P90s. I've found two main issues: noise (except in humbucker mode) and a bridge pickup that's weaker than the neck one. For the noise I always enable the input block's gate (with default settings). I haven't tried using the gate block instead (at different points in the chain). For the weaker pickup, maybe that's a question for a guitar forum, but it would help if you could comment on if this is something you've had to account for in your presets. For example, do you have a gain block or compressor that you punch in when using that pickup? Also, do you have the input pad ON? And how has this affected your amps' gain settings? Thanks! -- matt

 

 

These aren't modeler-specfic issues. Lower that neck pickup... a lot... that will help. 

 

I have learned that all my tones sound best with the input pad ON. (I think it's like plugging into input 2 on most classic fender amps.

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It may take some raising/lowering of your pickups if there is a major volume discrepancy between them.

Yes, take some time to adjust the height of your pickups to balance out the volume. That's a part of guitar setup that is not talked about very much. You just have to go by ear on that. 

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I have learned that all my tones sound best with the input pad ON. (I think it's like plugging into input 2 on most classic fender amps.

 

What kind of guitars are you using? I'm new to Helix and wasn't getting a great tone with my Strat. I turned the pad off and everything came alive. Is this a humbucker thing or do you find the same for single coils? 

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What kind of guitars are you using? I'm new to Helix and wasn't getting a great tone with my Strat. I turned the pad off and everything came alive. Is this a humbucker thing or do you find the same for single coils? 

 

My main guitar is hum buckers, but with a single coil split for each combo, and I even like that one with the pad on.

 

My other guitar is hum-cancelling singles.

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If you are having excessive noise problems with the Lollars, you might check your wiring and look into environmental culprits. I have the Lollar P90s in a Les Paul and without shielding or noise gates they are no noisier than my Strat or Tele single coils. As for the pickup output, that's not uncommon. The strings physically move further at the neck than they do closer to the bridge, so they induce more current. This is why overwound bridge pickups are common. You can either balance the output by adjusting their heights, or you can deal with it. If you were so inclined you could assign a gain block or eq to a footswitch for switching back and forth. I've done similar for the dark circuit on my Jazzmaster. I hope you find a solution that works for you!

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