Advice about Squier wide range humbuckers

Hi Everyone,

Some advice needed about Squier wide range humbuckers.

I have just acquired a used Squier CV Starcaster (see other post today about unexpected NGD) and I would be grateful for any advice about setting the pickup height as I don’t know anything about humbuckers.

I have attached photos. Here are my questions:

  1. The pickups have little screws on the top. I don’t know if these are what people refer to as the poles. Anyway, you will see in the photos that the screws are not set at the same height. The most obvious is the bridge pickup. I am assuming that changing the height of those screws will alter the sound and that screwing them out so they’re closer to the strings will increase the sound and that screwing them in (making them further from the string) will make them quieter. Is that correct? Should these screws be set at such different heights like in the photo or should they all be level? The also pickups have 4 screws on the side (outside the pickup cover) to raise and lower the whole pickup. So I don’t really know which screws I should be turning to set the pickup height. So far I only did this using the screws that raise or lower the whole pickup as that’s what I know from my Telecaster single coils.

  2. When I set the pickup height: Should I measure from the string to the top of those screws (the one’s that are currently not level) or should I measure to the metal cover of the pickup that has Squier written on it? I am assuming I should measure to the screws, but that’s why I find it strange that they have been set at different heights.

  3. The A,D,G and B strings sit more or less over the respective screws on the top of the neck pickup. So it is not too difficult to measure the height from the string to the screw on these strings. However, this is not the case for the 2 E strings. This is normal for this guitar (which is a weird design) as the tune-o-matic style bridge has a wider radius than the neck. The E strings do not sit directly above the screws and those screws are placed at a wider position than the E strings. This makes measuring the height from the string to the top of the screw very difficult. So any suggestions how to set the pickup heights would be very much appreciated. But also it means that the combination of the screws not being directly below the E strings, and with those screws being screwed further into the pickup than the others screws, it means the 2 E strings are considerably further away from the screws in the pickups than the other strings. To me that doesn’t make sense at all as it means that the E strings would be quieter than the others strings, this reducing the range of tones in the bass and treble. But perhaps I am missing something?

The guitar was really badly set up when I got it so I don’t think the previous owner had a clue how to set up this guitar and did some weird things. I’ve done the neck, action and intonation and all is now really good but I don’t really know what I’m doing with these pickups.

Grateful for any advice.



1 - yes but… the individual string screws should only be used if one string needs to be louder to match the rest. There is a pocket/zone of effectiveness of the magnet, and the magnet magnetizes the string and its the magnetic string that interacts with the coil

2 - Dont measure, listen. Too high and you’ll have too much signal and it will get muddy (or hit the strings), effectively you want the same decent level of output from both pickups and to match your other guitars if required (ovb relative to styles etc).

3 - dont worry about it the screws dont need to be directly under the string and pickups, fret/string width vary some.

Those pickups look like they have 4 screws for height adjust which is unusual.


Additionally, the screws are nominally pretty close to flush with the pickup cover. Start there and do like Rob said to tune individual strings. Height is set by the screws on the outer ring, and I have not seen 4 before. I have one on each side, centered on my HB guitars.


@RobDickinson and @sequences

Thank you very much, both of you, for this very helpful advice. I really appreciate it.