Pickups

P-90’s in a Humbucker Mount

1

Not really lovin' the stock PAF style 'buckers in my Fujigen Les Paul copy. I'm a big P-90 fan and was considering a pair of P-90's in a humbucker cover. I know most of the boutique pu companies make them but I'm on a real tight budget with this one. Anyone have any experience with the GFS Mean 90's ? The Mean 90's are allegedley P-90's squeezed into a standard 'bucker cover. They also make a Dream 90. I've read some good things about the Mean 90's on some other sites. The Dream 90's, not so good. At $34.99 a pop they fit the budget....any thoughts?

2

I have a set of the GFS in an inexpensive Asian guitar. They are OK, but they do not hold a candle to the Duncan Phat Cats that I have in two other guitars. The Duncan's nail the P90 sound and thickness. The GFS are good pickups, just a bit thinner. Of course, the wiring harness may have an effect upon tone also.

3

I should add that I have a set of hand-wound P90s in humbucker size rings in my RC Allen, and they don't sound too great either! But RC was never really know for a great attention to detail (RIP, no offense intended). So it's not just about cost.

4

Gibson P94 is the humbucker sized p90 pup I believe. They seem to be about $125 new and around $80 on ebay. SD has the Prail pup that is a single coil rail attached to a p90 in a humbucker mount. this gives you many options, and I hear they are close to standard sized p90's but not dead on... Here is a boutique pup at $130:

http://www.philxstore.com/p...

5

I have a set of the GFS in an inexpensive Asian guitar. They are OK, but they do not hold a candle to the Duncan Phat Cats that I have in two other guitars. The Duncan's nail the P90 sound and thickness. The GFS are good pickups, just a bit thinner. Of course, the wiring harness may have an effect upon tone also.

– Mark Shimonkevitz

Thanks for the info. Do you have the Mean 90's or Dream 90's? The Duncans are actually priced alot better than some of the other booteek humbucker sized P-90s....but the GFS are really inexpensive but more often than not you get what you pay for.

6

I like the Mean 90s.

7

I had a P94 in my tele once and couldn't get it out fast enough. They sound nothing like a P90.

8

Gibson P94s are terrible - IMHO! Lindy Fralin makes a good P90 in a HB case - he just doesn't advertise it.

Doesn't TV Jones do a T90 in a HB size?

9

I have Harmonic Design Z90s in my G&L and love them. But they're $100 each. (I bought the guitar with them already installed). Lots of good choices out there.

10

I didn't like the dream 90's I had. Haven't tried the mean 90's. I think in the end you mostly get what you pay for. But most of what you get is snakeoil.

11

Duncan Phat Cat.

13

Don, Thanks for that link. I'm still sticking with Phat Cats.

15

Is your guitar heavy? Made in the Fujigen factory or is it specifically the Fujigen brand. I ask only to get an idea of how solid this solid body is. Example: I have PAFs in my 10lb. Tokai LP clone but hot Lollar P90s in my Edwards LP clone. Both are solid but the Edwards is more resonant and feels weight relieved. The mahogany on the Edwrads is just is not as dense and the Lollars may be too hot. I like P90s in a denser LP as it keeps a certain "smooth" tone.

have you tried other humbuckers? Maybe the SD Pearly Gates or the Gibson '59 reissues(found in the 2014 LP Traditionals.)?

16

Good question NJDevil. The guitar is actually the Fujigen FGN brand. It's relatively light for a Les Paul (just under 9lbs). It's not one of FGN's fancier models (lowest in the line-up J Standard) and has a plain maple veneer top, a mahogany neck with a nice rosewood fretboard and what appears to be maybe a basswood body or some other Asian mysterey wood. Definately softer than Mahogany. The only weight relief I can see are the typical LP back cavities for the electronics. Not a big fan of PAF style 'buckers in general so it's hard for me to judge how good the stock pu's are. They appear to be relatively low output for Gibby style 'buckers (which is not necessarilly a bad thing IMO) and sound to my ears anyway, better dirty than clean. If it was just a matter of changing out the stock 'buckers for better 'buckers I could probably find real nice replacements used on the 'bay; however P-90's in a humbucker case seem to not be plentiful used.

17

Okay, I held out as long as I could, but you guys knew I had to pipe up sooner or later

Kent Armstrong Convertible (Humbucker-sized) P90s. Neck and Bridge set. RWRP for hum cancelling in the middle position. $95 for the pair. This particular eBay seller is from Camp Hill -- not quite local, but close.

They also come in black and nickel covers, I believe.

I have this pickup in the neck of my G5120 (and a dyna at the bridge). A Dyno Brain and some slapback, and it's awesome.

18

Okay, I held out as long as I could, but you guys knew I had to pipe up sooner or later

Kent Armstrong Convertible (Humbucker-sized) P90s. Neck and Bridge set. RWRP for hum cancelling in the middle position. $95 for the pair. This particular eBay seller is from Camp Hill -- not quite local, but close.

They also come in black and nickel covers, I believe.

I have this pickup in the neck of my G5120 (and a dyna at the bridge). A Dyno Brain and some slapback, and it's awesome.

– evil_thing

Thanks for the heads-up. Just checked those Armstrongs out and the dealer also has a set with cream plastic covers which I like. They would only be about 20.00 more than the GFS Mean 90's. Camp Hill is about 2hrs from Philly...so the free shipping would definately be fast. I've heard good things about Armstrong pu's, especially their P-90's and Tele pu's. Definately a contender (have to also figuire in installation by a tech as I'm pretty useless with electronics, soldering, etc).

20

Okay, I held out as long as I could, but you guys knew I had to pipe up sooner or later

Kent Armstrong Convertible (Humbucker-sized) P90s. Neck and Bridge set. RWRP for hum cancelling in the middle position. $95 for the pair. This particular eBay seller is from Camp Hill -- not quite local, but close.

They also come in black and nickel covers, I believe.

I have this pickup in the neck of my G5120 (and a dyna at the bridge). A Dyno Brain and some slapback, and it's awesome.

– evil_thing

Great idea evil thing. Being that the description of the guitar sounds a lot like Edwards LP(solid but lighter but the Edwar)ds has a solid maple top and not a veneer), resonance does not sound like it will be a problem and you might want to look for a medium output P90 with a humbucker cover. Check out the Lindy Fralin page:

http://www.fralinpickups.co...

21

Based on the Premier Guitar reviews, the Fralins seem to be a slam dunk .....but unfortunately way out of my price range. Jury still seems to be out on the GFS Mean 90's. They even got a decent review in the Premier shootout and it was reassuring that the reviewer felt that the Mean 90's were as well constructed as any of the pu's reviewed. Some folks love them and others don't....but I've also heard both positive and negative impressions of even some of the $$$$$ boutique pu's on various guitar/gear sites. No rush on this, so I'll keep sniffing around. Do really appreciate everyone's input..... GP folks are always a great resource for just about anything guitar or music oriented.

22

I've got a set of Mean 90s in my Gibby SG and they will never come out. Amazing pups. I have a friend with the Dream 90s in a 5120 and she loves them.

I've owned or installed over a dozen sets of GFS pickups, and I've never had a problem with any of them. Most sounded killer as well.

Personally I like the sound of the Mean 90s in my SG better than the Phat Cats I have in an LP at my music store. Maybe it's a tone preference thing, but I've found pickups are one of the things where price has little bearing on sound.

I also have a set of HB sized P90s in my Schecter Goldtop LP, and those are different, but equally as badass as the GFS. Not sure if Schecter sells them, or if you can find out where they were made, but it might be worth looking into.

23

Hey Ripley I think the humbucker sized pu's in your Schecter are Schecter Super Rock 90's. Can't find much out about them except that they came standard on a Special Edition Goldtop Solo 6. They don't offer them for sale on the Schecter website. Seems like the GFS Mean 90's might be a good way to go. Right now it's between the GFS Mean 90's and the Kent Armstrongs. Unfortunately I haven't been able to find out much about the Armstrongs except the specs. I'll keep looking for some video/sound clips.

24

Not sure what your time frame is, but I've been meaning to record a video of the KA/Dyna set in my 5120. I don't know how well it would correspond to having one in a LP-style body though.

25

Here's a question: when it comes to P-90s, what are the advantages v disadvantages, differences tonally, etc between metal covers or plastic covers. I ask this as the GFS Mean 90's would have a nickel cover while the Armstrongs can be had with either metal or plastic covers.


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