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Humbucker Wiring

Q: Can I mix and match humbucking pickups from different manufacturers?

A: Absolutely — but you need to know the color code for the different pickup‘s wiring setup. Most modern humbuckers are equipped with 4-conductor wiring, which means there are four wires coming off the pickup that facilitate anything from standard humbucking wiring to more unique applications, such as coil taps and phase reversal. Which wires you connect to what depends on which manufacturer made your pickup.

What follows is the color-coding rundown of the four wires coming off of a pickup on standard 4-conductor wiring from some of the most popular pickup manufacturers we carry, with the two coils wired in standard series operation. Let’s get the easy one out of the way first — the bare wire ALWAYS goes to ground, no matter which manufacturer made the pickup.

Seymour Duncan:

  • Hot: Black
  • Ground: Green
  • Solder White and Red together for standard Series operation


  • Hot: Red
  • Ground: Green
  • Solder Black and White together for standard Series operation


  • Hot: Red
  • Ground: Black
  • Solder Green and White together for standard Series operation

As with any modification to your guitar or its components, it is best to seek out an experienced guitar repair tech if you have doubts about performing soldering or modification work.

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