Jem Pickups - All Paf pro's the same? - Jemsite
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-15-2001, 09:40 PM Thread Starter
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Jem Pickups - All Paf pro's the same?

This has probably been discussed before and I'm sorry I couldn't find it here or in the Jem history but in the old catalogs, they always listed the Jem pickups as "Dimarzio" without any model #. *I know they were supposed to be Paf Pros, but do the early Jems really contain the exact Paf Pro that is available now and has been listed in the catalogs since they started using the actual words "Paf pro"? Or have there been changes made? By simply saying "dimarzio" did they go through some recipe experimentation in the beginning? Sometimes things of the same name are very different. Has anyone ever measured them?
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-15-2001, 11:46 PM
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i've never measured output, but i believe the PAF Pros are unchanged since their inception. The only changes should be the model number stamping and moving to F-spaced. It would be interesting to see what DiMarzio says about this ... glen
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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-16-2001, 04:37 PM
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I personally think there is a difference between PAF pro's. *I have them in 4 guitars. *Jem SK, BFP, RG550 and another non-Ibanez. *The SK bridge pickup went bad so I repaced it with a new one from Ibanez (they did a pink one just for me ) Not only is the sound different from the old PU to the new one but very different from the PAF in the same position in either the 550 or the BFP. *As a matter of fact the BFP PUs, to my ears, don't seem as hot as the others. It should be the same, same pickup, same wood etc. *
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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-17-2001, 03:24 PM Thread Starter
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That's why I'd like to see some ohms readings on them from different times. I abandoned Dimarzio for quite awhile during the '90's because some of the pickups were grossly off from their specifications in the catalogs. At the time, it was a manufacturing issue. From all of my sources, they were very inconsistent. So it wasn't like someone stamped a Fred with a Tone Zone number or anything grossly incompetent like that, but they sure did vary enough that the pickup you ordered wouldn't be the sound you had in your head from the elaborate catalog descriptions. So when I heard the dramatic differeces between Jems with Paf Pro's I started looking into it. But I don't know if it's just manufacturing tolerances, or if there's something different about the old ones when the catalogs simply referred to them as "Dimarzio pickups" Oh well, if anyone has taken measurements of different production years that would help clear the mystery.
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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-17-2001, 10:05 PM
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I have to agree with Jimmi. I have about 6 PAF pros and apart from 3 or 4 of them the others sound different. the most noticable differnce, to me, is that they are more raw sounding and not as quiet and smooth.

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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-19-2001, 04:15 PM
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I have often wondered about the PAF Pros too. I have had quite a few Jems and have noticed differences. But, in my case the PAFs that sounded warmer were in two FPs and those that sounded thinner were in 3 different BFPs so I suspected the main difference was due to the BFP maple neck versus the FP rosewood necks.

However, I played Walter Mak's PMC, a maple neck guitar, and it sounded really warm. Now I am not so sure why I hear differences. One day I may pull a few guitars apart and take measurements. For now, I am assuming that pink and purple pickups aren't as warm as blue ones...
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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-21-2001, 12:20 PM Thread Starter
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Wouldn't that be easy? If they were simply color coded? Good call on the maple fretboards, but I think you're right in that there is something more than just acoustic differences. If you actually have several Jems, you don't have to take them apart to measure them. *This is not an acurate way to measure the resistance of a pickup, because of the pots and switches, but for comparison purposes, it is effective. Simply plug a cord into the jack, and move the 5-way to the bridge position, measuring the tip and sleeve of the other end of the cord. *Write that down, go to neck position and write it down, too. The volume and tone have to be fully up, and the cord should be short. Then do the same thing with the other guitars. Since the others have the same 500K pots and the same caps on the tone, the numbers will mean something. If one had a 250K and the other a 1meg pot then it would be less accurate. What we may decipher here is that there is in fact a major "mood swing" to the manufacturing process. But I'm still interested to know if the original Jems were some other "first attempt" pickup that later became the PAF Pro, or if Dimarzio/Ibanez claim that the Jems had the same PafPro's in the beginning as they've had ever since, making it simply a manufacturing issue. I'd like to know which year they started using the phrase "Paf Pro" in their literature. *
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-21-2001, 08:38 PM
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I still have 1 FP and 2 BFPs. I'll try your measurement method.

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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-21-2001, 11:51 PM
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I haven't moved things back from storage yet, but this should make an interesting comparrison.

87' LNG
Bridge *11.5
Neck *12.5

92 GMC
Bridge *12.5
Neck *13

00' FP
Bridge *12.5
Neck *12.5

93' Donnie
Neck 12.5
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bridge pickup , bridge position , dimarzio pickup , dimarzio pickups , jem pickups , maple fret , maple fretboard , maple neck , meg pot , neck position , paf pro , paf pros , rosewood neck , tone zone

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