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Shielding question

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by Jim11895, Oct 10, 2010.

  1. Jim11895


    Dec 10, 2009
    Maybe I missed it, but I searched this forum and didn't see anything on this: Does shielding a pick-up have any affect on the tone of the pick-up? In other words, other than hum, or the absence of it, would a shielded pick-up sound any different from an unshielded pick-up? Reason I ask is that I'm putting Seymour Duncan Antiquity II's in my Jazz bass, and the guitar tech recommended shielding (not specifically because of the Antiquity II's, but because he thinks it's a good thing to do in general).

    Thanks in advance for your comments,
  2. SGD Lutherie

    SGD Lutherie Inactive Commercial User

    Aug 21, 2008
    Bloomfield, NJ
    Owner, SGD Music Products
    First, shielding single coil pickups does not get rid of hum. If it did, every single coil pickup would be shielded, and there would be no need for humbuckers. :)

    It does help with electrostatic noise, which is like a high pitched buzzing noise.

    If you wrap a closed turn of copper or aluminum foil around the coil, it will likely reduce the high end from the pickup, somewhat. So if you choose to go that route, leave a gap in the ends of the foil strip. Make sure all shields are grounded.

    Otherwise shielding wont change the tone.
  3. Jim11895


    Dec 10, 2009
    Thanks for the reply. Makes a lot of sense when you put it that way. So if I have not had any issues with electrostatic noise, does it make sense to shield? Is there a downside to shielding, other than the reduced high end if no gap at the ends?

    Thanks again.

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