Q-Tuner is based in the USA and specialises in designing and building neodymium magnet-based pickups for both bass and guitars. Each pickup is custom wound to the customer’s own specification. The company is launching a new model called the q2.0 which is in a nifty transparent casing. This seems to be a truly unique, bespoke product in the boutique world of boutique pickups.
High-powered neodymium magnets are at the heart of the design. The company says their design gives greater clarity, similar to what you would expect from an active pickup. Yet the Q-Tuner pickups are all passive designs and therefore require no power source. They have been building pickups for many years and the new q2.0 design is a new addition to their range, catering for 5-string basses and 8-string guitars. As yet they are still at prototype stage, although they should be available later this year.
Q-Tuner will custom design and tailor the new q2.0 pickups for the individual, and this design can also be made for either guitar or bass. They have a range of pickups already in production for both instruments, though this new one is the first one featuring their new design. Previous iterations have all been just plain black with a logo embossed on them. This new transparent design will be available soon to order directly from the company.
Each q2.0 pickup is wound using the company’s proprietary computer-controlled guidance system and should in theory offer consistent results. This is a completely different approach to most other boutique pickup manufacturers, who normally boast that every pickup is wound by hand, using traditional techniques.
They are then sealed in some sort of transparent acrylic material, which looks amazing! It’s an interesting, eye-catching design; I hope they sound as good as they look.
It would appear that Q-Tuner are looking forward rather than backwards with their whole design ethos and this makes for an interesting new product. Of course, I have no idea what they sound like yet, as I have never had the opportunity to try out their designs in a guitar. But the whole concept is one that I find intriguing, as I do like gear that strives to push forward and break away from tradition. If designers like this didn’t exist in the past then we would never have had Fender Stratocasters, EMG pickups and Floyd Rose trem systems.
I’m all for something new, as I think this is how the guitar grows and stays alive in a modern world. I am looking forward to hearing what these new pickups can achieve and also to hearing some real demos. If I hear anything more I will, of course, share it with you.
RRP is projected to be around the USD $199 mark and will be made initially for 5-string bass and 8-string guitar