• THIS IS THE 25th ANNIVERSARY YEAR FOR THE LES PAUL FORUM! PLEASE CELEBRATE WITH US AND SUPPORT US WITH A DONATION TO KEEP US GOING! We've made a large financial investment to convert the Les Paul Forum to this new XenForo platform, and recently moved to a new hosting platform. We also have ongoing monthly operating expenses. THE "DONATIONS" TAB IS NOW WORKING, AND WE WOULD APPRECIATE ANY DONATIONS YOU CAN MAKE TO KEEP THE LES PAUL FORUM GOING! Thank you!
  • WE HAVE MOVED THE LES PAUL FORUM TO A NEW HOSTING PROVIDER! Let us know how it is going! Many thanks, Mike Slubowski, Admin
  • Please support our Les Paul Forum Sponsors with your business - Gary's Classic Guitars, Wildwood Guitars, Chicago Music Exchange, Reverb.com, Throbak.com and True Vintage Guitar. From personal experience doing business with all of them, they are first class organizations. Thank you!

More magnet swapping

Dave Paetow

Les Paul Forum Member
Joined
Jul 15, 2001
Messages
13,524
I was putzing with swapping magnets in the neck Antiquity this morning, just to satisfy my curiosity. I A/B'ed them with the Burst to compare.

Stock Antiquity magnet Alnico II- Kind of dark and smokey sounding. Way darker than the neck PAF in the Burst.

Alnico V from JB - More open overall with a bit less mids and more open highs. A bit darker than the neck PAF in the Burst, but not too bad. Could use a touch more highs.

Alnico II from '57 Classic - Bright highs, with a lot more hollow midrange. This was much brighter than the neck PAF in the burst, with less midrange warmth. A bit hard sounding to me.

If there was a magnet somewhere in between the JB Alnico V and the '57 Classic Alnico II, that would be the ticket. I'm putting the Alnico V back in.
 

Des Howl

Les Paul Forum Member, Classic Club
Joined
Jul 20, 2001
Messages
800
Dave,

Could you describe the sonic character of your unplugged Les Paul - how bright or mellow or resonant, the attack, what it emphasizes - and how you think the various pickups translate those traits?
 

Dave Paetow

Les Paul Forum Member
Joined
Jul 15, 2001
Messages
13,524
My guitar seems to have a mellow resonace to it, like a broken in old guitar type of sound. With the stock burstbuckers, the guitar was on the dark side, the neck pickup was pretty muddy, but after I changed the pots and put in the antiquity pickups, it sounded better, more highs, but still was a little dark. With the alnico II magnet from the 57, I thought it was too bright, especially when compared to the burst. The alnico V magnet from the JB sounds closer to my ear.
 

toni

LPF Tone Chaser
Joined
Jul 26, 2001
Messages
1,103
tanks for the info Dave !

I'll try the Alnico V FROM GIBSON next week just for fun (maybe they are different from SD's Alnico V !
BTW, does alnico V retains the same hollow tone and warm bass of the alnico II magnet ?
 
Last edited:

Dewey

The Czar
Joined
Jul 15, 2001
Messages
557
Dave, I'm curious. Have you ever taken an ohm reading on your Burst, both neck and bridge? I really haven't heard you mention to much about your Burst in a while, do you still play it often?
 

LHakim

Active member
Joined
Jul 15, 2001
Messages
2,113
I may be wrong but I mentioned it before: a slightly aged alnico V might get those of you who are after paf tone not just closer to the ball park but actually crossing home plate. BTW I'm convinced the more I listen to Bloomfield's and Green's live tone that those guitars had alnico IV or V magnets in them. In fact I'd bet money on it (and I'm not a betting man); at the very least those particular guitars don't sound like they have alnico II magnets in them.
 

Dave Paetow

Les Paul Forum Member
Joined
Jul 15, 2001
Messages
13,524
Dewey
One of the PAFs read around 9k, the other is in the low 8's, I haven't measured them for a while, but that is what I recall. It is a wonderful sounding guitar.

Toni,
I used a alnico V out of a Duncan JB. I don't know if Gibson ages their magnets or not, so the result may be different. I did notice that there were a bit more mids, and a bit less highs with the V than the II. The Antiquity is a 7.5K, I'd like to try a II in a higher ohmage neck pickup and see how it works.

Didn't Gibson use alnico II, IV, and V magnets in old PAFs?
 

LHakim

Active member
Joined
Jul 15, 2001
Messages
2,113
I'll try to find the link I posted to the ezboard site which summarized Tim Shaw's research into old pafs when Gibson went about creating the heritage series. What he found were mostly alnico II's but also unoriented alnico IIs(which he claimed sounded like alnico V's) as well as alnico V magnets. I've read elsewhere that some original pafs had alnico III and IV's in them. It was a cool article. Its somewhere on Gibson's website.
 

toni

LPF Tone Chaser
Joined
Jul 26, 2001
Messages
1,103
L Hakim and Dave,
to my ears, Peter Green's sound had a more percussive tone than other Burst's recordings i've heard. Am i right ?
Various magnets could explain these very different types of sound from different late 50's Burst's.
Guys, my english language is bad, but i'll try to ask this way: Which magnet gives the more "Open" tone with the larger and warmer bandwith without beeing harsh ?

...just my curiosity, because i like Gibson's Classic 57's Alnico II in Antiquities...
 
Last edited:

LHakim

Active member
Joined
Jul 15, 2001
Messages
2,113
Toni I'm not sure if that "percussive" sound Green gets isn't at least partly due to his choice of amps and playing technique as much as to the guitar/pickups. That bright percussive sound is very clear to my ears on the Boston Tea Party version of Black Magic woman. As far as which magnet yields a more open tone I'll have to defer to the Mayor on that question!
 

Dave Paetow

Les Paul Forum Member
Joined
Jul 15, 2001
Messages
13,524
From my little experiment, I preferred the alnico V, but results may vary based on the basic guitar tone and pickup strength.
 

toni

LPF Tone Chaser
Joined
Jul 26, 2001
Messages
1,103
Guys,
it's fun because we can finetune our tone to suit various situations.
In my 59/1999's Classic 57's, the Alnico II magnets were shiny...
maybe i'll discover porous magnets in Classic 57's from my 58...hee hee
I'll try alnico II And Alnico V and see what haapens... hee hee
I would be glad to end with two different great tones from my two guitars !
 
Last edited:

plaintop

Active member
Joined
Jul 15, 2001
Messages
9,591
Dave,

It sounds like your historic '59 is a little like mine in the wood tone department. A little dark to begin with. I will agree the '57 classic magnet (Alnico II?) in the Antiquity yields a brighter top end while the bottom and mid's are hollow and tight. It is a hard tone. I think it is very usable for me. I sometimes throttle back the tone pot on the bridge to about 7. I have adjusted the highs and treble on my amps and such to get a nice warm, growling tone.
 

Dave Paetow

Les Paul Forum Member
Joined
Jul 15, 2001
Messages
13,524
I agree it is a very useable tone, especially in the neck pickup. I'd like to try a hotter wind that has more mids and less top end and try the 57 magnet swap. I was just trying to see how close I could get to the tone of the Burst neck pickup.
 

plaintop

Active member
Joined
Jul 15, 2001
Messages
9,591
I think we all appreciate your effort. You are really a key voice because you have an original to A/B. Unfortunately; the historic reissues don't have the old wood. I bet the mod-ed antiquity would sound a lot better in your original. A LOT better! I also think the "new", "young”, "inexperienced" tone of the historic line will start to fade away with age and playing.
 
Last edited:
S

Snags

Guest
Out of all of the posts on magnet swapping, I haven't seen much discussion regarding magnet strength v.s. # of windings/resistance of the coils... Example: If you were to take a ceramic magnet out of a 14K+ pickup, and shoehorn it into an 8K pickup, in theory shouldn't the pickup windings be overloaded by the higher signal level that the hotter magnet will produce, much like overloading the primary side of an output tranny? And on the opposite end, if you were to put a weaker magnet into the 14K pickup, wouldn't this result in a super weak signal with the tone of a fart because the weaker magnet can't produce enough signal to overcome the resistance of the coil? I realize that the coil is where the magnet/string interaction produces an ac signal, but this is the easiest way for me to describe what I'm thinking about. This makes sense to me in my head, but I don't know how realistic it would be in a real-world situation.
 

toni

LPF Tone Chaser
Joined
Jul 26, 2001
Messages
1,103
...do you know where we can buy these Alnico V magnets ?
 
Top