A Question about tone


New member
Hey fellow softies, i wonder if pickups really play a big role in the tone that u want.
But is an amp and gadgets much more important? are pickups secondary compared to amps and gadgets in getting a specific tone? Thank you!
Amps are definitely more important.
A great guitar through a TGM 10 watt amp will sound like crap.
A mid-range guitar with maybe, Duncan Designed pups will sound good through a Dumble amp.
a very good amp can make a normal guitar sounds good.
a very good guitar will sound like crap thru a crappy amp.
a very good guitar and a very good amp will sound like a dream with a few tasteful notes.

and ya, pickups of course does plays a part in going in the sound YOU are looking for. There is no crappy pickups as they are all created for different purposes. I think there is no do-it-all pickups or amps... its up to you to mix and match.

maybe a marshall stack thru a les paul is like Char Kwey Teow without hump , then add a EMP pickup in it is like with hump , but will taste different although its till Char Kwey Teow.
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I think there should be less worry as to which ingredient plays a more crucial role - until the player is able to discern that tone is not about sound only.

I don't think spectacular equipment encourages feel as much as doing things like - playing loud, composing, jamming and challenging personal norms. In addition, I think we forget that in today's world - many, many things that "qualify" as crap are actually quite improved from the past.

A familiar experience is watching great sounding/feeling musicians tear it up with "mediocre"/"crappy" gear... and we have 10x better (read: pricier) gear.

That said, I would be unable to grade the ingredients of tone. I don't think the pickups component is any lesser than the amp or gadgets because pickups affect the overall feel A LOT.
I've never really bothered about pups swapping. I find that adjusting pickup heights solves most of my issues. But of course some pups pull of certain tones better, but I just can't make up my mind on what EXACT pickups I want.
So I'd rather invest in other items.
there are mainly 2 extremes in pickup tones. chimey single coils and thick humbuckers. there're of course a 101 variations between these two, but if you are on one end, but the tone you seek is on the other, then pickups do play a bigger part in obtaining that tone you want.

as for other gear like amps and pedals, yes they do get you ther other 70%-90% of the tone. the thing that affects tone the least is the guitar itself and the wood it is made off, but that's just my opinion.