Why don’t more guitars come with different brands’ pickups mixed and matched?

Guild Aristocrat
(Image credit: Future)

There’s little doubt that most electric guitars made today stick with pickups from the same manufacturer, be that in-house designs or those from a third party such as Seymour Duncan. When was the last time you saw a new guitar for sale with two or three pickups from different makers? 

The last one I can remember was the Charvel Henrik Danhage signature, which pairs a full-size Seymour Duncan JB at the bridge with a single-coil-sized DiMarzio Area 67 at the neck, and I’d wager the ‘different brand pickups on the same guitar’ concept is pretty much exclusive to signature instruments.

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Dave Burrluck
Gear Reviews Editor, Guitarist

Dave Burrluck is one of the world’s most experienced guitar journalists, who started writing back in the '80s for International Musician and Recording World, co-founded The Guitar Magazine and has been the Gear Reviews Editor of Guitarist magazine for the past two decades. Along the way, Dave has been the sole author of The PRS Guitar Book and The Player's Guide to Guitar Maintenance as well as contributing to numerous other books on the electric guitar. Dave is an active gigging and recording musician and still finds time to make, repair and mod guitars, not least for Guitarist’s The Mod Squad.