BG Pups Pure90 P90
You can order them from BG Pups here
I bought this to install in the neck of the carved-top neck-thru flamed redwood/walnut guitar I recently built. I had never owned a guitar with a P90 and wanted to try it, but didn't want to rout out the guitar for a big soapbar pickup, only to find out that the P90 sound wasn't for me - enter the BG Pups Pure90. These fit a standard humbucker rout - try it out, and if it isn't for you, you can always pull the plug and go back to a standard humbucker. The other nice thing is that people debate often how close to a P90 these hybrid pickups sound, but Bryan Gunsher (the BG in BG Pups) says are similar to his well regarded soapbar models, so I thought they were worth a try. Bryan runs what is, as far as I can tell, a one-man shop in NorCal, so expect some wait time as he makes your pickups by hand (several weeks). They came well protected if simply packaged (I went for creme), were the real normal humbucker shape, and installed fine.
As far as how they sound, I like them now, but honestly before installing the buffer on my guitar they were too dark. I was expected a good amount of single coil spank and sparkle, but that was missing from my guitar at least. With the buffer now I experience what I'd say is an almost hifi neck sound (I think this is more the buffer than the pickup) and I do get a hair more spank than I would normally get out of a humbucker. Personally I like the sound quite a bit now. You will see from the videos below that for most people these pickups are plenty articulate - perhaps it was the redwood damping out the guitar. Oh - it is worth noting that I haven't had any issues with hum with this pickup, though as an additional FYI I shielded the guitar cavity with copper tape.
Side note: I believe you can now order a metal cover for these, but Bryan feels they negatively affect the tone, for what it's worth.
From the manufacturer:
"With all the talk lately of P90s and Humbucker sized P90s, I thought I'd sit down and design a real P90 that fits a humbucker rout.
What I came up with is a set of my Vintage P90s shaved down to fit a humbucker route.
This set of pickups started out basically as a set of BG Pups Vintage P90 soapbar pickups.
After the coil is wound the bobbin and baseplate is trimmed to fit inside a humbucker cover. The only part used that is not used in my Vintage P90 set is the cover. Though I decided since true P90s use a plastic cover, I would use a plastic humbucker cover. As chrome covers have an effect on tone.
This pickup is great for rock, blues, jazz or anywhere you would want to use a traditional P90 pickup.
This pickup is very versatile and responds to slight height changes and poles screw height changes. Lots of dynamics and attitude with this pup.
This pickup uses alnico magnets, nickel silver baseplate and pole screws and vintage braided hookup wires. Bridges weigh in at around 10k and necks 7.8k
If you've been searching for a Pure P90 sound in your humbucker routed guitar...Look no further..The Pure 90 is the only choice.
Singles come with 2 conductor hookup wire, Sets come with vintage braid hookup wire
Best videos/sound clips:
Here Bryan himself introduces and demos these pickups. The sound quality leaves a bit to be desired but I like hearing from the maker himself about the pickups and their design. He is playing an Explorer it looks like, but unclear if it is Gibson or Epiphone.
Here Mark Wein is playing a neck/bridge set through a 1979 Gibson "The Paul" (walnut guitar) with a nice clean bluesy sound. He seems to be getting a really nice articulate sound with good spank, so my issues getting enough high-end could have been guitar-specific. Looks to be playing through a Fender Twin with a condenser mic. He also has 12s on this guitar with half-round strings as an FYI:
427toledo here plays ZZ Top's "Fool for your Stockings". Nice clean bluesy licks up front. Driven solo starts around 4:50. I'm not sure what guitar/amp he is playing, but the guitar is a hollowbody and does appear to have Pure90s in both the neck and bridge position:
fenderlead1 shows off some great articulate jazz tones from the neck of his Gibson ES-165 with a bit of reverb added. Very pretty sound here.
Don Felipe here used a Fender Japan '72 Tele Thinline with BG Pure90s to demo the ZVex machine fuzz. Not all of the tones here are for the faint of heart (or for me, frankly) but since a fuzz interacts with your pickups more than most pedals (save for maybe a wah or volume pedal) I thought I'd include it. Played through a Fender Pro Junior, mic'd with a Shure SM57.
So these are my favorite videos of this pickup on YouTube, but there are definitely more out there. Clink the following link if you want to launch a new window and auto-search for this pickup on YouTube HERE