How to identify Gibson Pickups

By | April 11, 2021


Look at the back of the guitar suspension for a metal stamp reading ‘Gibson USA’; the stamp will look like an engraving. On newer Gibson pickups, the letters are skewed, with the word ‘Gibson’ only outlined while ‘USA’ is shaded in by a series of dense parallel lines. Unlike the Seymour Duncan pickup, there is usually no text on the front of the pickup. always check the back for Gibson authentication.

Look for Gibson’s brand isolation. Gibson’s high – quality, well – insulated pickup cables are typically silverfish gray and textured rather than smooth. This type of wire is common to even very old Gibson pickups.


Check for pliers. This only applies to humbucker pickups, as single-coil pickups by definition cannot be dropped. Gibson humbuckers usually have a flushing capacity – in other words, each spiral of humbucker is connected independently for increased tone control. A pickup capable of attaching the coil will have three wires under silverfish gray textured insulation: two wires of the same size for each coil and a larger earth conductor.


Check the serial number of the guitar from which the downloads came. If you pick up the pickup from an old Gibson guitar, you can validate the guitar’s authenticity and its parts by confirming the serial number with the serial number provided by Zachary R. Fjestad’s guide (see Resources), adapted from the ’11th edition Blue Book of Guitars. ‘

Gibson guitars have been popular for decades and will continue to sell well into the future, as electronic guitar games such as Guitar Hero and Rock Band use Fender and Gibson designs for their controllers. According to the Associated Press, Best Buy, the well-known electronics store, offers malls that sell real Gibson guitars along with faux guitars in the video game department. Unfortunately, a downside is that knockoffs are common, and it is sometimes difficult to distinguish true Gibson guitars and parts from the many products on the market. But with the right know-how, you can identify Gibson pickups in just a few steps, allowing you to get the real deal and not just an imitator.