Documenting history as well as my experiences with repairing and restoring vintage guitars.

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 "Mike" Guitar Pickups There are a variety of guitar pickups that have the word "Mike" in them (referencing the word mic...

"Mike" Guitar Pickups

 "Mike" Guitar Pickups

There are a variety of guitar pickups that have the word "Mike" in them (referencing the word microphone) so I'm putting together this resource to help document some of the existing pickups I have found.

There does exist a DeArmond FHC "Guitar Mike" pickup but that is unrelated to these pickups and so I won't discuss it.

Melody Mike 

  • Manufacturer: Unknown
  • Date of Production: Unknown
I acquired this pickup installed on a 1950s Kay flat top guitar that was set up to play Hawaiian style music and was immediately curious. I contacted a very reputable DeArmond collector at and he told me that this unit did not appear to be from DeArmond-Rowe. Later as I started working with more real DeArmonds I realized that the units are, in fact, totally different

The pickup was an unpotted single coil pickup with a plastic bobbin and brown cellophane tape protecting the bobbin. The black plastic cover was glued on and has "Melody Mike" engraved very lightly into it. It mounts with two tabs and a spring steel tensioner that bears against the bottom of the guitar soundboard. The control unit was a single volume with a Dakaware knob and a CTS pot that was soldered to the baseplate so the date code was obscured. The control unit has brown felt to prevent marring on the instrument.

This is another Melody Mike unit that I found on Reverb but was unable to snag it to view it in person. This unit is designed for archtops and is a clear copy of the DeArmond "monkey on a stick" Rhythm Chief pickup.

I also came across a forum posting on by poster "Skip Delicious" who says that he also found a pickup but he never posted pictures or followed up on the forum.
I purchased a box full of old guitar pickups from a music store that went out of business several years ago. The store opened in the early 1950's, so most of the stuff in the box was vintage. One of the sound hole pickups in the box is labeled "TP MELODY MIKE PAT. PENDING" on the black plastic pickup cover and "AUDIO EQUIPMENT CO. INC. GREAT NECK, N.Y. U.S.A." on the ON/OFF volume control piece. I can't find any information on this pickup. Anybody heard of this brand?

Symphonic Mike 

  • Manufacturer: National Polytronic Inc
  • Date of Production: Unknown
I've seen a two of these units on the internet, both archtop pickups, that were obvious DeArmond clones. Luckily the pickups have their manufacturer engraved on the plastic cover and the above listing also included the original box. 
National Polytronics Inc
162 Greenwich St
New York City

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