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Air Norton DP193

 
The Air Norton™ started out simply to be the Airbucker™ version of the Norton®. We thought it would make a distinctive-sounding bridge pickup with high-gain amps, but we soon discovered that it's a radically neat neck pickup, too. The tone is deep and warm, but not muddy. It's hot, but not distorted. It's even got cool harmonics, which are really unusual for a nec... T: 5 - M: 7 - B: 6.5


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Searched Air Norton DP193 in Reviews
 

 

Hated it at first, now I love it!

Comments Having very recently picked up a 1570 with this installed in the neck this was my very first experience with this pickup. I found it a little too bassy and sligthly muddy on clean tones, I had quickly made my mind up to change it out.

Then 2 days ago, I decided to install a push/pull volume to replace the frozen volume pot that was in there. As soon as I opened the rear panel it hit me, the soldering looked like the aftermath of a robot porn movie, solder was splattered everywhere. The previous owner had obviously gotten hopelessly drunk, then put on a pair of boxing gloves and wired the pickup while a friend beat him around the head with a baseball bat. After much head scratching, profanity and searching of the Jemsite forums (a big thank you guys!!!) I found the answers I needed and with the correct wiring and a few suggested modifications this pickup is now a dream.

It's now as fat as a Disneyworld customer on distortion for a nice bluesy flavour, has beautiful tone for clean sounds and is definitely the most versatile neck pickup I have ever played.


Liked about it 1 Fat bluesy leads with a sustain not unlike a LP
2 Beautiful clear clean tones
3 Darkens down nicely for those evil distorted sounds


Didn't like 1 Can seem a little dark at first


Overall satisfaction:
 
4.5

By Laobi
Oct 06, 2013
 
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A unique neck pickup

Comments I have the Air Norton installed in the neck position of my 1990 RG550. This is my 2nd encounter with the Air Norton - the first time I tried an Air Norton I had it installed in my RG2550z and in my opinion I found it to be too dark for that guitar.

I know pickup reviews are somewhat subjective because there are many factors that influence an electric guitar tone but my first impression of the Air Norton in the neck position of the RG2550z was that it was kind of like a Starbucks coffee - too strong and too dark. I did recognize that it was a good pickup because I liked how it handled high gain tones with clarity and it had a unique 'glassy' sound to it that I kind of liked - it just didn't seem right for that guitar.

It also didn't provide the typical neck pickup tone that I am used to and I think that threw me off a bit in my initial reaction.

However, recently I acquired a 1990 RG550 and was thinking about trying an Air Norton again because I knew the 550 would be a brighter sounding guitar with the maple fingerboard so I went for it and just as I suspected - I am happier with the Air Norton this time around.

The RG 550 is a definitely a rock guitar and I am typically playing this guitar with a fair amount of gain and I like how the Air Norton reacts with lots of gain in that it has good clarity. This pickup is a little stronger than what I am used to in a neck pickup but I am happy with the results I am getting now that it is in a brighter sounding guitar - and now that I know what to expect from it.

I guess my main points are that this is a great pickup with good clarity but it is not going to give you a typical neck pickup tone and it might be a little dark in some guitars depending on what your are looking for and what you are used to.


Liked about it Nice clarity when playing with lots of gain;
A unique glassy sound that I like;
Good for soloing.


Didn't like This pickup does not have the typical sound that you would expect from a neck pickup, which could be a positive or a negative depending on what you are looking for.
This pickup is also a little dark sounding to my ears so I think you need to be careful about what kind of guitar you put it in - I would be hesitant to put it in a dark sounding guitar like a mahogany bodied guitar.


Overall satisfaction:
 
4.5

By doriangrey
Aug 04, 2012
 
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Great neck pickup for a floating bridge equipped guitar

Comments Being a relatively big fan of Jon Petrucci, I (like most) have researched the kinds of gear he has used to get his signature tones. A huge part of his sound for years has been the Dimarzio Air Norton pickup in the neck position of his guitars. Clean, it sounds quite warm and thick; great for trying to fill out the sound of a floating bridge equipped guitar. It helps the guitar sound almost as big and warm as say a Les Paul. With distortion, it sounds very fat yet articulate. A word used by a reviewer that I like is bubbly. That is a pretty abstract word to describe tone, but I think it applies nicely to this pickup. It also has some nice harmonics (as mentioned on the Dimarzio website) which helps add dimension and almost a 'single coil' like edge when you are high up on the neck. I have added the Air Norton in almost every Ibanez guitar I have ever owned, and I have owned a bunch. It has become the standard neck pickup for me in all my Ibanez's.


Liked about it Articulate
Fat/ warm
Well rounded; works well with clean and overdriven/ distortion tones


Didn't like Pricey (well, not really, but I think pickups are way too expensive in general)
May be too warm/ fat for some
Nothing else!


Overall satisfaction:
 
5.0

By Severinsteelsmit
Sep 01, 2010
 
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fave neck pickup besides the Evo neck

Comments This was how I have always wanted my neck tone to sound like: warm and meaty, while still having note clarity even with heavy distortion. With the Air Norton installed on my RG2550e, I can get really bubbly dirt tones when picking and tapping, and when played clean, it greets you with a friendly and warm sounding tone. Especially when playing shred you get instant gratification from this pickup, and rolling down the volume when playing with slight OD gives you really nice controlled dirt sounds.

I really like Marco Sfogli's and early Petrucci's tones, so this pickup does a really great job at getting that really nice bubble sound when picking and shredding, and the medium output means that it will be at the very least usable for different styles, although it makes picking a bit more challenging because notes don't "jump out" of the amp as much (the Evolution neck solves the attack and response issues some may find in the Air Norton). Nevertheless, this pickup keeps me happy for the sheer quality of its "dirty voice," and its friendly clean sound is a really nice bonus.


Liked about it 1. Great shred pickup
2. Warm and friendly clean tones
3. Cleans up well when used with OD


Didn't like Being a mid-gain pickup, it'll prove challenging to use for guitarists used to a light touch when playing fast runs, because the notes don't jump out of the amp as much (which probably dampens the attack as well).


Overall satisfaction:
 
5.0

By theapprentice
Mar 01, 2010
 
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Good

Comments It's a very nice pickup, would recommend it for anything but metal. It's a neck pickup that doesn't sound as much like a neck pickup as you would expect it to (in an flamed maple topped alder bodied, maple necked, rosewood fingerboarded, Floyd Rose Pro equipped guitar with D'addario EXL 110's [10-46] anyway).


Liked about it I feel the airbucker technology gets rid of some external hum due to the weaker magnetic field. The tone of this worked fantastically on one of my jazz recordings, and Rob Balducci's Empress incorporates this pickup (I think that song is great). It can have a big sound, can be very expressive and works very well in split coil positions.


Didn't like It doesn't have huge attack, what some may want for faster, raging metal solos. I would not recommend this pickup to anybody that's into the sort of Gus G/ Legen Beltza (listen to the cannibalistic PAF pro neck tone on the Dimarzio website, you'll get what I mean) neck pickup sound.


Overall satisfaction:
 
4.0

By Guitarist-Jonny
Feb 14, 2010
 
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Fantastic neck pickup

Comments I have this pickup in my RG570 and love it. It is an awesome neck pickup. Plenty of pick attack and harmonics. You get a nice, fat, but also tight tone with this pickup. It is a very articulate and responsive pickup. You can hear every note clearly. Whether you are playing chords or shredding. One of my favorites.


Liked about it Different colors

Responsiveness

Fat bottom end


Didn't like Nothing I do not like. Highly recommended.


Overall satisfaction:
 
5.0

By javashred
Aug 15, 2012
 
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The Perfect Neck Pickup

Comments I have this installed in my '02 Ibanez RG550 in the neck position and I absolutely love it! Very thick, smooth and shreddy. I had a Paf Pro previously fitted into the neck position but It just didn't work for me, It was too treble-y. The Air Norton is a little like having a Les Paul tone in an Ibanez, works for all styles and sounds incredible. Even though it is medium output, it still does really stand out.


Liked about it 1. Tone, I was absolutely god smacked to get my dream neck tone.

2. Versatility

3. Works very well on clean channel


Didn't like 1. Not very responsive when playing legato.


Overall satisfaction:
 
5.0

By Speedabob
Apr 12, 2011
 
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Great sound!

Comments Great articulation, great sound, great tone, great price! Everything about this pickup rocks! It has smooth lead tones, and amazing cleans. GET THIS HUMBUCKER!


Liked about it Everyhing! price, sound, tone, volume, everything was great


Didn't like the ONLY thing about this pickup is it can get muddy if you turn your tone knob down. Some like that though, I dont.


Overall satisfaction:
 
5.0

By linuxpenguin
Jan 13, 2011
 
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Great Choice

Comments this pickup has a very rich tone, that compliments a variety of woods. it has smooth lows and mids, with punchy and articulate highs. it stays very crisp when put through over drive, and doesn't break up all that much when put through compressed distortion. the sustain that i achieved with the Air Norton was simply incredible.

I've installed this pickup in an ibanez rg 520 qs, coupled with a Tone Zone in the bridge position. i feel that this set really compliments the mahogany, and maple neck. i have also heard this set in basswood as well as alder and both sounded great.


Liked about it -loads of sustain
-clear tone/articulate
-very quite


Didn't like not all of the pole pieces are adjustable. I, as well as some others, prefer them to all be adjustable to better alter the sound and response my liking.


Overall satisfaction:
 
5.0

By jbouxa
Aug 27, 2010
 
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