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Guitar Maintenance: Adjusting Pickup Height

The height of the pickup determines the level of output it produces.

A pickup works by electronically sensing string vibration, which creates a vibrating current in the pickup's coil.

Moving the pickup closer to the strings increases the amount of vibration that they sense, which in turn increases the output of the pickups. To reduce the pickup output, move it further away from the strings.

When would I need to adjust my pickup height?

  • If one pickup is far louder than the others.
  • If some strings are far louder than the others.
  • To increase the amount of distortion your output naturally has.
  • If some strings sound distorted when you play.

How to adjust pickup height

At either side of the pickups there are small screws. As there is one at either side of each pickup, the height at one end of the pickup can be greater than the other.

Turning the screws clockwise raises the pickups, increasing output.

Turning the screw anti-clockwise lowers the pickups, decreasing output.

Be careful when lowering the pickup, as unscrewing too far can detach it from the guitar body.

Disclaimer: These are instructional articles only and should be carried out only by someone with a superb knowledge of their instrument. Gear4music is not responsible for any damage inflicted by following these guidelines.

Posted on 20 Mar 2009 09:00 to category : Tips and advice

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