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#2475466 - 03/02/13 11:57 AM Need Bright humbuckers - hot but not too hot.
CEB Offline
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I have a old guitar. I love the action but the neck binding went bad. It is huge heavy solid piece of mahogany. It is like a les paul but without the maple cap to brighten things up. The stock pickups are 40 years old and sound too dark for what I want. I like hot pickups but want to be able to play clean if I want. Not like my Explorer that wont play clean through my clean channel.

Original plan was the old JB in the bridge and Duncan Jazz in the neck. Sounds good in a normal guitar. I wondering if I should look else since the guitar is naturally dark. Budget is $230 tops for the set.
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#2475470 - 03/02/13 12:17 PM Re: Need Bright humbuckers - hot but not too hot. [Re: CEB]
Dannyalcatraz Offline
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Lace Alumitones might do the trick. I don't think I've heard cleaner passive pickups.

You might also want to visit Tesla's site- lots of options, lots of sound samples.


Edited by Dannyalcatraz (03/02/13 12:17 PM)
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#2475500 - 03/02/13 04:15 PM Re: Need Bright humbuckers - hot but not too hot. [Re: Dannyalcatraz]
Dannyalcatraz Offline
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Also, some helpful soul recommended Vintage Vibe pickups to me, and I'm putting some in a Dean as an upgrade. They're essentially being custom wound for me after describing what I want, and they looked very affordable to me.
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#2475502 - 03/02/13 04:42 PM Re: Need Bright humbuckers - hot but not too hot. [Re: Dannyalcatraz]
The Geoff Offline
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Look at Tesla Humbucker-shaped P90's.

G.
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#2475508 - 03/02/13 05:21 PM Re: Need Bright humbuckers - hot but not too hot. [Re: The Geoff]
Larryz Offline
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http://www.amazon.com/Seymour-Duncan-Rodded-Humbucker-Pickups/dp/B0007TYPYQ <--- you are already checking these out and I think it's a good idea, especially when SD matches them up for you. There might be some coil tapping push/pull pots that could be added too if needed... cool


Edited by Larryz (03/02/13 05:26 PM)

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#2475542 - 03/02/13 10:35 PM Re: Need Bright humbuckers - hot but not too hot. [Re: Larryz]
Bluesape Moderator Offline
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I have a set of 57 Classics in a maple bodied guitar. This combination makes the axe too bright and shrill in a clean amp. Your dark sounding mahogany axe may be a better match for pups like these.They are hot and bright. Just like ya wanted. Ya might also try changing the magnets on the existing pups.
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#2475578 - 03/03/13 10:07 AM Re: Need Bright humbuckers - hot but not too hot. [Re: Bluesape]
Bartholomew Offline
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Loc: Montreal
I have the Jazz & JB in a 74 Les Paul Custom, ebony fretboard.

The tone controls need to be rolled-off but I wouldn't say the pickups are too bright.

I'd rather have the top end and back-off - sometimes I need that extra bit of brightness with some groups and various amps.
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#2475582 - 03/03/13 10:36 AM Re: Need Bright humbuckers - hot but not too hot. [Re: Bartholomew]
Larryz Offline
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On one of my Strats I have 2 active EMG humbuckers, an 85 at the neck and an 81 at the bridge which is the same concept as the Jazz and JB SD concept... cool

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#2475633 - 03/03/13 06:17 PM Re: Need Bright humbuckers - hot but not too hot. [Re: Larryz]
CEB Offline
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Thanks everyone. What kills me is I need to cover such a broad variety of stuff. Top 40 Country, Theory of a Deadman, Slash, clean jazzy / pop stuff. I want passive humbuckies.
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#2475671 - 03/04/13 05:17 AM Re: Need Bright humbuckers - hot but not too hot. [Re: CEB]
Bluesape Moderator Offline
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A guy I know has 57 Classics in an Epi 335 that sound great. Your old Swede is a great guitar, but ya may need to change pots and caps by now too. Ya need to put a meter on the pups and pots and check the draw on each part of the circuit. Changing the pups may not solve your concerns if the circuit integrity is off.


Edited by Bluesape (03/04/13 05:19 AM)
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#2475680 - 03/04/13 07:07 AM Re: Need Bright humbuckers - hot but not too hot. [Re: Bluesape]
CEB Offline
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The guy doing the work with go through everything. The 3 way lo pass / lo-mid pass switch needs replaced. My luthier will go through the electronics. He is way more particular about stuff than I am. I have to be careful or he will go over my budget.

He likes Dimarzio a lot. I have used Dimarzio a lot over the years. He has a lot of Rio Grande piclups in stock and some high dollar stuff I have not heard of. He doesn't seem too high on Duncan.

But I don't want to spend too much on the old guitar. I guess these old Swedes are selling for more money than I expected. I saw some with a nice cherry finsh like mine in comparable condition listed for $1000-$1400. Shocked me maybe they are highly sought in Europe. (Some are selling for $700 and $800) I think I paid $275 for the old thing. I will keep all the stock parts and bag them up I case I sell everything off. I may have to move to Nashville for work purposes.

I was thinking about selling my Explorer and getting a Les Paul but I remembered how much I liked the neck on that old Swede. It always had a dark tone. The only thing I don't like is that it is just like a Les Paul I can't keep the G-strings in tune.


Edited by CEB (03/04/13 07:40 AM)
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#2475694 - 03/04/13 08:08 AM Re: Need Bright humbuckers - hot but not too hot. [Re: CEB]
Larryz Offline
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+1 on the 57 humbuckers in an Epi 335, my buddy did the same thing along with changing the pots. They were $150 each for the pups, which was a little over CEB's budget, but they do sound great!

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#2476994 - 03/11/13 04:02 PM Re: Need Bright humbuckers - hot but not too hot. [Re: Larryz]
Caevan O'Shite Offline
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Try some Golden Age AlNiCo 5 humbuckers from Stewart-MacDonald. Or, if you can get along with unpotted pickups- just like the original Gibson P.A.F. humbuckers- try their vintage-correct Parsons Street AlNiCo 5 set.
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#2477041 - 03/11/13 10:13 PM Re: Need Bright humbuckers - hot but not too hot. [Re: Caevan O'Shite]
desertbluesman Offline
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I always choose Duncan Distortions, plenty of power, just the right tonal balance for my taste. They play clean and when the overdrive kicks in, they have just the right balance of drive and over/undertones to suit my taste. I have been using them since they came out waaaaaay back in the day.
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#2477061 - 03/12/13 05:59 AM Re: Need Bright humbuckers - hot but not too hot. [Re: desertbluesman]
CEB Offline
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My guy has ordered some pickup that he thinks I will really like. Good thing is he is going to put them in and not cut the leads and let me try various pickups. He carries in stock Duncan Dimarzio, Rio Grande, EMG, Bill Lawerence and a few Gibson pickups.
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#2477063 - 03/12/13 06:12 AM Re: Need Bright humbuckers - hot but not too hot. [Re: CEB]
Guitarzan Offline
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i was going to suggest a Dimarzio super distortion. sounds like a one trick pony but the SD is a copy of a hot PAF that was in Larry's Les Paul. very nice pickups. it is articulate and fat.
and very tweakable in flavour by changing height.
and have you considered TV Jones?
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#2477068 - 03/12/13 06:34 AM Re: Need Bright humbuckers - hot but not too hot. [Re: Guitarzan]
picker Offline
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Duncan JBs. No question.
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#2477088 - 03/12/13 07:17 AM Re: Need Bright humbuckers - hot but not too hot. [Re: CEB]
Winston Psmith Offline
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Originally Posted By: CEB

I was thinking about selling my Explorer and getting a Les Paul but I remembered how much I liked the neck on that old Swede. It always had a dark tone. The only thing I don't like is that it is just like a Les Paul I can't keep the G-strings in tune.


That's a common problem when older guitars meet newer string gauges, CEB. The old nuts were often cut for a wrapped 'G' string, around .021/.023, so if you're using a modern string set with an unwrapped 'G' at .017 or .018, it's sitting too far down in the nut slot, and it may be slipping, as well. Try a wrapped 'G', and see if that doesn't fix the problem. Might give you a slightly beefier tone, too, especially on rhythm.
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#2477155 - 03/12/13 11:42 AM Re: Need Bright humbuckers - hot but not too hot. [Re: Winston Psmith]
Larryz Offline
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Registered: 06/23/08
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I prefer a wound G string as it makes any guitar sound sweeter than they do with a plain G especially on open chords IMHO. Taylor cuts the saddle on their acoustic/electric T5 differently if using a wound 3rd instead of the plain. Cost me $40 bucks to change it over just for the new saddle...plain 3rds are a lot easier to bend. Fender staggered the magnet heights on their later Strats to get rid of that tinny sounding 3rd string...which a lot of guys can't hear.

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#2477428 - 03/13/13 06:17 PM Re: Need Bright humbuckers - hot but not too hot. [Re: Larryz]
Bartholomew Offline
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Loc: Montreal
For what it's worth - I just put a SD JB into an Epi SG400 since the stock bridge pickup didn't do it for me.

Almost hot but not as much as the 500T in my new Les Paul. Much less hot actually but still has balls.

Lots of top end - I've been playing it with the treble control rolled off to approx 3 on the guitar. One of these days maybe I'll change the Alpha 500K pots also.

And I know this sounds ridiculous, can't explain it...the complete personality of the guitar has changed on both pickups as I left the neck original. Bleeding into each-other perhaps for some electrical reason.

Almost sounds like a stratocaster on steroids on some settings.
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#2477548 - 03/14/13 09:27 AM Re: Need Bright humbuckers - hot but not too hot. [Re: Bartholomew]
Larryz Offline
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+1 on changing/upgrading the pots...

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#2477694 - 03/14/13 09:06 PM Re: Need Bright humbuckers - hot but not too hot. [Re: Larryz]
Bartholomew Offline
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Loc: Montreal
PS - Dimarzio...

I had a Dimarzio PAF at the neck of a 68 tele for approx 43 years until it stopped working.

Was plenty bright...even with 250K original pots and a .47 cap.

Had a really good open & warm sound. I do jazz standards, Blues, retro R&B, classic-rock, some country...always liked that brand.

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#2477824 - 03/15/13 11:03 AM Re: Need Bright humbuckers - hot but not too hot. [Re: Bartholomew]
Larryz Offline
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Registered: 06/23/08
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I've always been accused of jazzing it up by my old counrty and rock & roll buddies. It's fair to say they are somewhat correct. +1 on being versatile. I like to play in 4 or 5 different genres and I find myself getting more into learning jazz chords for backing the solo act and coming up with little chord leads. As I get older, I really appreciate the old standards and the neck pickup gets more and more use these days... cool

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#2479693 - 03/22/13 06:49 PM Re: Need Bright humbuckers - hot but not too hot. [Re: Larryz]
pinkjimiphoton Offline
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i'd reccomend if it's an option wiring the neck bucker like a big ass single coil. it will still buck hum, but sound sweet and bell like like the neck of a strat.
keep your dc resistance around 8k or less. above that, the highs suffer and the mids will become more pronounced.
guitar fetish has some GREAT buckers at realistic prices.
don't fall for mojo..
electrons really don't care what they flow thru too much. wink

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#2479790 - 03/23/13 07:20 AM Re: Need Bright humbuckers - hot but not too hot. [Re: pinkjimiphoton]
CEB Offline
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Registered: 06/03/09
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I can do that or I could convert to second toggle switch on the Swede to a series/parallel selector for the neck pickup.

The binding is setting right now and the pickups are installed. The wiring is the main thing that is left to do.


Edited by CEB (03/23/13 07:21 AM)
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#2479824 - 03/23/13 09:05 AM Re: Need Bright humbuckers - hot but not too hot. [Re: CEB]
pinkjimiphoton Offline
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i think you may dig the series parallel option.
i LOVE wiring buckers as big single coils. still bucks most of the hum, but that bell tone to me is the deal maker.

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#2480690 - 03/26/13 05:00 PM Re: Need Bright humbuckers - hot but not too hot. [Re: pinkjimiphoton]
hurricane hugo Offline
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Some Kent Armstrongs might work, especially their FilterTron replacements.
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#2480748 - 03/27/13 03:18 AM Re: Need Bright humbuckers - hot but not too hot. [Re: CEB]
Caevan O'Shite Offline
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I notice that some posters suggest some of their favorite humbuckers, but not necessarily "bright" and "hot but not too hot" models...

Originally Posted By: CEB
The only thing I don't like is that it is just like a Les Paul I can't keep the G-strings in tune.


Try a tiny little dab-lette of lube in the nut-slots, bridge-saddle notches, any string-retainers, etc. if you haven't already. Go lightly, and apply it with a toothpick or pin or the like from the back-side of the nut and saddle, respectively, as too much can seep into the string-windings on wound-strings and dull the tone. Not much worry about that with the plain 3rd/G, though...

I REALLY like the Teflon-gel lube I got from Radio Shack (Archer Brand) in a little pen-like dispenser; it works great for this! it's thick and stays put. I put some in another container and mixed it with powdered graphite, too. Slicker 'n snail-snot on a brass doorknob inna rain.

Try this; it's the Archer Precision Lubricator with Teflon, Radio Shack catalog # 64-2301 or 64-2301A. Looks like this:
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I can also HIGHLY recommend the Peterson StroboStomp line of tuners; their "sweetened" Guitar Preset, designated "GTR" on mine, is great for this. I used to try to get the 3rd/G just barely a tiny bit flat, with the 4th/D and 2nd/B as close to almost going a tad sharp as I could, but this tuner with that preset does everything for me and I never notice the 3rd/G sounding "off" and sticking out.
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#2480807 - 03/27/13 07:35 AM Re: Need Bright humbuckers - hot but not too hot. [Re: Caevan O'Shite]
CEB Offline
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Thanks

I'm expecting to pickup the guitar this week.

I'm keeping all the stock parts in case for some reason in the future it becomes financially advantageous to make this thing stock again.

The guitar sets up perfectly. I think it look best with the pick guard but the pickguard sets right in the picking plane so I removed it. I am going to try to figure out a way to to lower the pickguard somehow. I will try some of these g string suggestion and run this problem by my luthier.

Thanks again.
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#2480872 - 03/27/13 10:20 AM Re: Need Bright humbuckers - hot but not too hot. [Re: CEB]
Caevan O'Shite Offline
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Originally Posted By: CEB
I think it look best with the pick guard but the pickguard sets right in the picking plane so I removed it. I am going to try to figure out a way to to lower the pickguard somehow.


Can you post some pics, with (and without) the pickguard? Maybe some of us might help brainstorm some ideas for lowering it...

Originally Posted By: CEB
I will try some of these g string suggestion and run this problem by my luthier.


A well-executed precision filing/dressing of the nut slots and/or bridge saddle-notches, particularly that of the 3rd/G, might help here... Your luthier will know.
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