Neck pickup is optimized to
reduce tendency to mush the wound strings at high volume resulting in
better clarity and definition with more dimensional properties.
Bridge pickup is clear and articulate with great versatility.
You will have a lot of fun,
enjoyment and satisfaction exploring the extended sonic dimensions of
these remarkably advanced pickups.
I modeled my P-90 Hx on an authentic, original early 50's Gibson
P-90. The basis sonic character of the Gibson has been retained while
certain aspects of performance have been improved. High output,
unparalled attack, sensitivity and dynamic range, remarkable presence
and aliveness, sweet but prominent highs, wonderful growl in bridge
position, piano-like stringy mid-tones in neck position, girthy HUGE
luscious lows and a position 2 sound (two on together) that
quacks/clucks like nothing else.
What's wrong with P-90's?
Not much, but two aspects that annoy me are the strong tendency of the
neck position wound strings when played as a chord to turn to mush
under aggressive pick attack; that and the large amount of mains hum.
During the course of the development period I came to realize that
some manufacturers of P-90 are under-winding for a lower output in an
effort to reduce 60Hz hum. Well they certainly did that but
unfortunately they also lost a lot of revered sonic characteristics. It
was when I compared these inferior modern cousins to my genuine
original Gibson P-90 I realize why it is I see so many comments on
forums saying the hum from a P-90 is about the same a Strat pickup.
That is a deluded claim because under identical laboratory test
conditions a genuine P-90 has 650 millivolts of hum compared to 250
millivolts for a Strat pickup. P-90's are incredibly noisy.
Improvements: I improved the definition and clarity
in order to reduce the neck pickup's tendancy of turning to 'mush'
under heavy pick attack. This was accomplished by increasing the dynamic
range, but the sound remains un-mistakably P-90. My noiseless P-90 Hx
are great sounding pickups, not offensive in any way, but not polite
either. It has the same brutal output as the original and the
characteristic P-90 muscular sound that in many ways is more likeable
(and more silent) than a humbucker. The P-90 Hx is an incredible tone
How good is the Kinman? Whether you like the sound
of a P-90 in the neck position or not, the true test of quality of a
P-90 is whether it sounds GREAT in the neck position or not. The Kinman
speaks with a BIG voice, notes are so alive they just leap out and it
sounds gorgeous and luscious in the neck position. With it's baseball
bat attack it won't turn to mush too easily when played hard. The sound
has piano-like mids, huge deep lows, sweet transparent highs that
sizzle rather than clang and dynamic range that takes you from a
tonefull gentle whisper to a crunched power chord in a nano second. One
more important test is 'does it sound great at low volume?' If a P-90
passes both these tests in the neck position it will sound superb in
the bridge position too. Then and only then can it qualify as an
authentic sounding P-90 and you'll know because you wont be able to put
the guitar down.
The loud mouthed Kinman noiseless P-90 Hx with it's remarkable 600
Ohm noise sensor is in a different world, keeping good company with
genuine great sounding noisy P-90's. It really has got something to
A new beginning and a change of history:
The P-90 was cursed with hum from the beginning, that's the
reason Gibson developed their famous humbucker so long ago …. to create
a hum-cancelling pickup. But Gibson's humbucker turned out to be a
very different sounding pickup and the P-90 hum problem was not
actually solved. The twist of history is now the P-90 Hx is even
quieter than a humbucker.
With it's revolutionary 600 Ohm noise sensor this pickup is gonna
move a lot of air, and change a lot of minds about hum-cancelling
pickups. It is nothing less than an astounding new beginning for the
noiseless era and will start a new chapter of history concerning P-90
Behind the scenes story:
G'day, Chris Kinman here. Over 8 years ago I set my goal to
duplicate the gorgeous sonic characteristics of a genuine original P-90
but eliminate the 50/60Hz hum, a noiseless P-90 (or hum canceling
P-90) no less. At the time I did not realize the massive effort and
complex manufacturing it was going to take to achieve that goal. Now I
know the reason noiseless authentic P-90 sound has not been achieved
before by other pickup manufacturers. There are plenty of look-a-likes
but not one has a genuine P-90 sound.
When I tried to design a hum cancelling P-90 by applying my existing
patented technology I found that which works well for Strats* and
Teles* was not suitable to cancel the immense amount of hum from a P-90
without destroying it's magnificent sound. I came to realize that P-90
sound, although in some ways brutal and powerful, is actually quite
fragile and a more sophisticated technique would be required if the
original sound is to be retained.
Discovering the additional solutions took almost 3 more years with
countless hours spent and many experimental pickups made and discarded
creating a whole bin full of scrap copper wire and parts. There were
many times I thought it was an impossible mission and almost came to
the point of abandoning the whole idea as a waste of expensive R&D
materials and my valuable time.
However, I had made a promise in 2001 and almost in desperation, I
continued, like a lonely prospector looking for gold in the wilderness.
I'm glad I didn't abandon my quest because eventually, little by
little the P-90 gave up it's secrets and I eventually found the Mother
My P-90 Hx captures the magnificent girth, luscious lows, piano mid
tones and extreme dynamics that characterize a great P-90 pickup. It
has 202 individual parts and some very unconventional thinking to
accomplish this extremely difficult task. Now YOU can enjoy magnificent
P-90 sound without that annoying mains hum at a price representing
extreme value for money (after all those 202 components cost more to
make and assemble than 10 regular noisy P-90's).
Inclusions: included with each pickup is a Cream or Black
soapbar cover, 2 mounting screws and 2 silicon rubber tube springs, a
handy drill guide template for positioning the screw holes in the
virgin floor of the pickup cavity of a project guitar or guitars with
freshly deepened cavities.
Winds for Bridge & Neck coils: In the normal
versions there are 2 models with optimized coil winds for the bridge
and neck/middle positions. The bridge wind has lots of girthy growl n
midrange for the bridge position, like my old Gibson P-90. The neck
wind has a bit more focus and aliveness for increased definition and
brightness which avoids the usual tendancy of regular P-90's to 'mush'
out, however both can be used in any position. If the pickup is to be
used in the middle position we will normally supply it as a bridge
version unless you request otherwise.
Pots: The best value for the volume pot is 500k as
this allows the pickup to breathe for maximizing dynamic response and
aliveness. A 250k pot can be used but there will be noticeably less of
the above characteristics.
Phase reversible: The P-90 Hx has 3 conductor
cabling so is phase reversible. Normal phase (aka output polarity) is
compatible with all Gibson and other Kinman pickups. Fender pickups
have opposite output polarity so reverse phase hookup can be used.
Covers: The P-90 Hx can be installed under Dog Ear
covers in an F-hole hollow body too by including an optional Kinman
mounting bracket with your order. Solid body guitars with Dog Ear
covers don’t require the bracket. There are three Install Guides: for
solid bodies with Soapbars and Dog Ears as well as for f-hole hollow
bodies with Dog Ears.
Dog-Ear covers which have a pole spread of 50mm are
suitable for the P-90 Hx. Most Epiphone Casino Dog-Ear covers have
50mm spacing however there are some Dog-Ear covers around that have
different pole spacing and won't accept the 50mm pole spacing of the
P-90 Hx. For a good selection of Dog-Ear covers follow this link
Avoid metal covers as these change the sound of the pickup, so use the
plastic covers only. Choose covers with a suitable height and bear in
mind that spacers to increase the height of covers is also available.
Also genuine Gibson Dog Ear covers are available in Cream and Black here
look under Gibson Pickup Covers. You will need to contact them about
height details of the covers to ensure they will be suitable for your
Connections: Can be ordered with with normal solder connections or with Kinman connectors for plugging into a Kinman Strat or Tele harness.
Shielding: It is highly recommended to install
comprehensive shielding since any P-90 worth it’s salt is susceptible
to RF buzzing from lighting dimmers etc. This is not the same kind of
noise as mains hum and can only be minimized with shielding.