Rickenbacker International Corporation - Forum

Toaster vs High Gain?
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Author:  Pinto [ Tue Oct 04, 2005 8:46 pm ]
Post subject:  Toaster vs High Gain?

Pardon if this has been asked a bit, but what are the main differences between toaster pickups and the high gains? I have a 1981 360 with high gains. Do the toasters have a different tone or just less gain?

Author:  Kez [ Wed Oct 05, 2005 8:34 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Toaster vs High Gain?

I compared a 1983 620 with Hi Gains to my 2002 660/6 with toasters, bearing in mind that all guitars have different inherent levels of 'loudness' it was still apparent to me that the toasters were warmer, fuller sounding and more pleasing to the ear. The 620 Hi Gains sounded thinner in every department.

Many people apparently unwind the reissue toasters to make them sound more jangly and toppy for '60's music. I find them just right as they are, a beautiful glassy clean sound that takes overdrive well when you need to get dirty.

Cheers, Kez

Author:  Orm_Embar [ Tue Jul 11, 2006 7:27 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Toaster vs High Gain?

I have had my 360 6 string for a few years and have been debating the high gain/vintage pick up question. I finally put a set of vintage toaster top pick ups in my guitar and the vintage pickups are far superior. I have always thought that my 360 had to much of a generic sound... not what I thought a RIC should sound like, but the new toasters give my guitar the ringing notes I always thought it should have.

I also have a 360-12 now I need to start saving up for a second set of vintage pick ups.

Author:  beatcomber [ Tue Jul 11, 2006 10:01 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Toaster vs High Gain?

Scatterwound toasters, which are spot-on repros of the originals, have been available since 2000. Compared to HiGains, they are brighter and more jangley, and have fairly low output. HiGains, by comparison, are louder and distort faster, but are darker and somewhat more midrangey.

Pre-2000 toaster reissues are wound hotter than the scatterwounds (and true vintage toasters), and are closer in tone to HiGains. These are the pickups that many have unwound to be closer to vintage spec. You can easily distinguish the older reissues by the Phillips head screws holding the pickup cover to the base. The newer toasters have vintage-correct flathead screws.

I recently swapped the HiGains on my 1984 330 for a set of scatterwound toasters, and have been delighted by the change.

(HINT: Pick of the Ricks has the best price on toasters that I'm aware of.)

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