Skip to content


Your cart is empty

Join the Gunstreet Mailing List

Sign up to the Gunstreet mailing list and become an expert in the circuits and pickups that make your instrument sing.

Article: 5 ways to Improve your SG guitar

5 ways to Improve your SG guitar

5 ways to Improve your SG guitar

In the world of electric guitars, few names hold as much weight as the SG. From the early days of rock 'n' roll to the golden era of "classic rock", the SG became the instrument of choice for countless pioneering musicians. Its distinctive sound, sleek design, and versatility made it an indispensable companion for artists who sought to break boundaries and redefine the music scene. But with those 60+ years of models, and other brands making copies, you can find yourself needing to tweak yours to get that distinct sound. Here are 5 ways to refine your SG.




Shot of a 2000s era SG

1. Pot value:

Gibson for a long time used 300k Pots to “tame their humbuckers. There’s nothing wrong with that. But it can cause a strong response towards your pickups. What we mean is you either love or hate it. Raising the pot value to something like 500k can help let your pickups breathe, and maybe stop you from swapping out a pickup you might have liked – Want to learn more about Pot value? Click here




Graph showing audio and linear pot

2. Pot taper:

This is mainly on a limited number of Gibson models, but mostly for import or non-Gibson SGs. Basically, these guitars use linear volumes, which we have found tends to make people assume the electronics are bad or "cheap". Switching to Audio can greatly change the feel of the controls. Take it the other way. Maybe you hate your Audio pots. Switch to Linear! Want to learn more about Pot tapers? Click here


a pickup showing the circuit difference between 50s, modern, or treble bleed

3. Filter circuit:

Stock you have modern, or what we call a low pass filter. All that means is it saves the low end. If you hate how the guitar sounds using the controls, you might think about changing it to a high pass. We recommend 50s if you are a player who mainly touches your volume, or Treble bleed if you tend to use both the volume and tone. Want to learn more about filter circuits? Click here





4. Pickups:

Now realistically this is a personal taste thing. I would suggest staying away from focusing on the trend of its “this” style of pickup and mainly look at pickups through the eyes of their EQ.

a picture of Gunstreet's Jimmy page circuit made for a SG

5. Switch mods:

Sometimes, we can like how a guitar plays or sounds. So much that we want to use it on all different songs, whether they used that style of guitar or not. Adding Switch mods like coil cutting, phase, or series can be a great way to make that guitar blend in, or at the least give you a sound you were not expecting. One thing to note about this option is SG's come in a wide range of thicknesses. You will want to double check if your cavity can fit push pulls.


Re the comment about weak high E strings. Curious what gauge you use? I use 9’s – always have – and have the same problem. I find the easiest fix is to raise the pole piece for the high E relative to the other strings. Seems many players don’t spend any time adjusting humbuckers and it can make a huge difference! Overall height of the pickup, stud coil relative to polepieces – worlds of difference! Neck pickup woofy on LP? Lower the pickup, raise the poles and adjust the height of the poles relative to each other for the sound you want. Just one example.

Todd Money

@TS there’s not much we can do in the passive realm when it comes to focusing on one EQ range, its more about broad touches. That being said I’m not sure what your guitars are style/brand wise and if it is an issue with intonation. If it is an issue with the strings or string gauges our friends @Stringjoy might have a better answer for you. But the only real things you can do passively is different EQ’d Pickups, maybe a single coil over a humbucker as an example or playing with the pot values to change the overall pickup compression.

Sean @Gunstreet

My guitars all have a weak high E. I’ve tried adding magnets, rails and height adjustment to no avail. I am a well trained electronic technician who makes his own preamps.
Any ideas?
PS. Not going to change my string gauge.


Leave a comment

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Read more

How a Volume actually works in your guitar

How a Volume actually works in your guitar

Before we start. Do you like posts like these? Do us a favor. Share this post with your fellow circuit nerds and sign up for our mailing list found at the bottom of this page!  I was recently talki...

Read more
Technicians guide to properly shielding your instrument.

Technicians guide to properly shielding your instrument.

We are lucky in that we interact with a massive amount of people modding their instruments. But at the volume we are at, we notice trends. One trend that pops up a lot is troubleshooting someone's ...

Read more