changing mind on pickups... - Jemsite
Pickups & wiring Discussion about pickup types, replacements, recomendations, switching, wiring diagrams and sustainer systems for ANY guitar, JEMs included.

  • 1 Post By hilljack13
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 08-12-2018, 09:06 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: San Antonio - HOT AS HELL
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changing mind on pickups...

I was planning on replacing the stock pickups in an RG570 with SuperD/Liquifire and leaving the S1. I'm thinking, since I have the pickups in hand and ready to install, and I just got my J.Custom with the Fusion Edge. I'm not really sold on them so I'm rethinking that I might just swap the fusions for the SD/Liquifire. I've also considered the Nazgul/Sentient combo for it. Just wanted opinions on buying more pickups or just swap the fusions.
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 08-15-2018, 11:44 PM
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Re: changing mind on pickups...

My feeling is if you bought a J-Custom, put the pickups you like in it. Complete the instrument. Life is too short to dwell on pickups......
.......well, maybe they should be dwelled upon for a little while. Do you want a Super Distortion and Liquifire in your J-Custom or would it just be convenient? (Convenience is not a bad thing by the way.) Regardless of the answer, you have two guitars you need pickups for which means it might be worth trying something you have never played or heard before. Take a risk because pickups matter much less than we think they do. I would put all aftermarket pickups in the "good pickups" category because I have never swapped out stock pickups for aftermarket pickups and thought the stock pickups were better. In my opinion, pickups, especially the bridge pickup, need character and purpose. The X2N is a good pickup. It has character and purpose. Distortion is its purpose. The Evo 2 is a good pickup. It has a mid-range snarl with the high frequencies chopped off (quite literally). I like the Evo (another good pickup) better. In the neck, the Liquifire is a great pickup which is why I assume you bought one. The PAF Pro, Air Norton, and Mo' Joe are all good pickups. (I think the Mo' Joe is a bridge pickup but I used one in the neck position and it worked well.)

You know what I played for a long time? The Tone Zone. The Tone Zone is a good pickup but it really lacks character. Its purpose is to be a safe pickup that isn't too hot but just hot enough to be fun. You may love the Tone Zone and think all of this is crazy. (You may hate the Tone Zone and think all of this is crazy too.) I was told the Tone Zone was a good pickup (which it is) but I was never told why. "Versatility" is probably the best one-word description I can come up with. Now, compared to the X2N, versatility is certainly an advantage, but compared to the other pickups I named, versatility tends to make life kind of boring for that guitar. Eventually, I switched to 7-string guitars, sold my 6-strings, and made up my own mind about the Tone Zone.

Whatever you decide, pickups are not "life and death." Pickups are like the color blue, we all have our favorite shade/hue of blue, but in the end, they all work. You can actually buy several Dimarzio pickups from their "custom shop" like the Double Whammy and Dual Sound (I think). I would love for someone to try the Double Whammy unless someone steps in and says it is the worst sounding excuse for a pickup ever made. In that case, I would advise against it. Otherwise, take a risk. Your guitar will still sound like a guitar.

...And that is roughly how much "dwelling on pickups" a person should do. I realize there are other pickup brands but the scope of this post is limited to Dimarzio. Lundgren's would be cool and different. They actually have a lot of character now that I think about it........................
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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 08-16-2018, 06:06 AM
Join Date: Apr 2018
Posts: 547
Re: changing mind on pickups...

I don't bother swapping pickups out unless I actively dislike how the standard pickups sound, I'm not a professional musician so I'm not looking for 'my' sound, simply 'a' sound which suits the general character of the guitar in question.

Most of my Guitars still have the original pickups fitted, notable exceptions include the hateful EMG-HZ pickups on one of my Jackson DKMG's, I changed them out for a SD hot rodded setup because they had no character whatsoever, I always prefer passive pickups because they are more dynamic. Generally this means humbuckers because they are much more sensitive to manufacturing quality, a single coil is frankly a single coil unless it's microphonic as far as I'm concerned.

You may dislike the new fusion edge pickups because you haven't played them enough yet to hear your own finger tone coming through them, or they may indeed be 'bland' as the poster above suggests.
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 08-16-2018, 05:02 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: San Antonio - HOT AS HELL
Posts: 126
Re: changing mind on pickups...

Thanks for the thoughts. I will definitely give them a while before deciding on what to use. The SD/LF is only convenience as you said. I still plan on putting them in the 570. I had originally thought of using the Duncan Nazgul/Sentient for the JC. I have the Black Winters in another and I freaking love them. I have tried the Air Norton/Tone Zone and I think they are good but not for me. Before I do anything though I need to get more solder wick. I'm procrastinating for some reason.

Also as for the SD/LF combo. I only chose this to try out by using the Dmarzio pickup picker. Every combination I tried they were almost always one of the three. The only other option was consistent was the D-activator and D-activator X. I picked the SD because of other artists I know that use it and I'm clueless on anyone that used the other two.
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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 08-16-2018, 05:15 PM
Join Date: Feb 2014
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Re: changing mind on pickups...

Originally Posted by hilljack13 View Post
The only other option was consistent was the D-activator and D-activator X. I picked the SD because of other artists I know that use it and I'm clueless on anyone that used the other two.

The D-Activator in a basswood RG was the best sounding bridge pickup I ever had... clean or dirty I loved the way it sounded. So harmonically rich and I'm the furthest thing from a tone snob, worked perfect with an Air Norton S in the neck on that guitar.

I usually just go with stock unless I feel there is a need for change... or if I just love the feel/playability of a guitar but the sound needs help. Actually, I'm just poor and fancy pickups aren't cheap... lol!
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