The Little Sister Private Build pickups are wound by hand, in-house. The P90s and Humbuckers are unpotted by default, as the original vintage pickups were. An unpotted pickup delivers a sense of airy openness, and a slightly more vibrant tone, whilst being more sensitive to the relatively weaker components of the strings’ vibrations, such as harmonics. Additionally, they better project the acoustic tone of the instrument, being more microphonic than the potted pickups.
Therefore, they are ideal for playing in a studio, at home, in small/medium venues, in low to average volume and gain conditions. Fingerstyle players, as well as jazz/blues and pop/rock players, will appreciate their dynamics and touch responsiveness.
On the other hand, they are more structurally delicate than potted pickups, as the windings are naturally more exposed to the environment, and may be more prone to high-frequency feedback and squealing in very loud playing conditions and high gain applications.
For those players who plan to use their guitars on loud stages, and maybe with higher degrees of overdrive and distortion, we offer the option of a light wax-potting for their pickups. The potting protects the coils, preventing vibrations in the windings. This dramatically reduces the chance of unwanted feedback and makes the pickup more rugged. The trade-off is a slightly reduced complexity of tone, and less sensitivity to the acoustic qualities of the instrument, perhaps making it slightly less microphonic.
The tone will be a little more focused and direct, and somewhat less airy and delicate. But the pickups will also become quieter, a tad warmer, significantly more resistant to feedback and squealing, and therefore better suited to play on large, loud stages, or with powerful overdrive sounds.
Our Kikbuckers are always delivered wax-potted, due to their increased sensitivity to feedback.