Picking some DiMarzio pickups. - Jemsite
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-03-2012, 03:26 PM Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: California
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Picking some DiMarzio pickups.

Hi forum. I'm currently in the processing of updating an old guitar body I'd gotten awhile back.

Guitar specs -
Carvin V220 1987/1989 (possible Marty Friedman CS Model)
Mahogany body (found conflicting reports that this has a maple toneblock)
Set maple neck (NOT a neckthrough like the newer models from the late 00's)
24 Ebony fingerboard (Medium jumbo fretwire I believe)
Tuneomatic bridge/Stop tail and Schaller trimlok machine heads
Graphtech Nut.

The guitar was stripped of hardware when I'd gotten it, was picked up at a garage sale for only 50 bucks! (Guy was selling it because he used to build custom guitars for people, but his business fell through).

As far as music and players I like. I'm sort of a proto-shred guy. I like to play fast, I enjoy listening to guys who play fast (Petrucci, Gilbert, Bumblefoot, Andy James), and I'm a metal head. I play alot of stuff tuned below E standard (Drop C, C Standard and Drop B sometimes). I really like prog rock, both the newer metal prog and the old school 70's prog, Coheed and Cambria, Dream Theater for the former, Rush and Styx for the latter. Classic early 80's metal, Megadeth, Testament, Maiden, the like.

But I'm also into fusion style playing, and I really dig on being able to play fusion styles with metal back beats. Frank Gambale, Guthrie Govan, Michael Caswell, Alex Hutchings, Jimmy Herring are guys that got me into fusion and outside playing.

What I'm looking for in pickups is something that won't necessarily do it all, but be able to go across the broad spectrum of tones without sounding too weak in any respect. For the bridge, something I can rely on that can go from your 70's crunchy blues and solo tones (Rush, Zep, Styx) to more modern detuned chugging (SMT, Trivium, At the Gates). Alot of my playing revolves around harmonics. I use tapped, pinch and natural harmonics to create a backdrop to my soloing, and I like being able to use chordal harmonics in soloing like EJ, so something with high output.

The neck pickup I'd like to be able to remain super compressed and clean, with really good harmonic overtones for soloing. Coil tapping doesn't really interest me, half a humbucker does not a singlecoil make, I'd rather just play a strat if I wanted SCs anyway.

For the bridge pickup I've narrowed it down to -
Crunchlab
D-Activator (Original or X?)
ToneZone
PAF-Pro
AirNorton

For the neck, I'm pretty much set on a Liquifire unless someone can convince me there's a better choice out there? I like the squishy overtones you can get with it on a super high gain setting, and it sounds ultra bell-like when it's clean, without any distortion no matter how hard you pick.

Thanks alot guys
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-04-2012, 10:56 PM
 
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Re: Picking some DiMarzio pickups.

Don't know about MF's custom V220 but I believe the '80s V220s were hardrock maple, not mahogany, unless you buck'd up for the curly maple or koa.
I think you're looking for a bridge pup that'll get '70s bluesy crunch, '80s EMG down-tune metal & easy harmonics? You might try the DP166 The Breed or the very much under-rated Super Distortion. In any event, it sounds like you're going to need an amp modeler and some decent pedals. I'd like to hear what pickup choice you make and your rig set-up when you're set on your sound.
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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-07-2012, 09:09 AM
 
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Re: Picking some DiMarzio pickups.

For all of those requirements I think you're going to need something that isn't massively colouring your tone 'cause you're going to be looking to you amp, pedals etc for the majority of your shape.

I would suggest a regular norton rather than a PAF-PRO. This is a personal preference for me. I like the Pro, Love the Norton. They are similar flavours of the same thing. Everything else in your list is somewhere in that tone family, but louder/higher output.

Maybe have a look at the Steve's Special too? It's like a super distortion with scooped mids. Great for 80's, but if you want that midrange, it's sadly not there, and hard to recreate.
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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-07-2012, 04:46 PM
 
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Re: Picking some DiMarzio pickups.

Norton bridge, PAF Pro neck
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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-10-2012, 04:01 PM
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
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Re: Picking some DiMarzio pickups.

RE: LonePhantom's comment-I'm considering both PAF Pro (neck) and Norton (bridge) for my 1990 550CMM. I like that these both (from what I've read) have a bit more classic vibe, aren't overly high-output/high gain, but can still rock hard when needed. I also want to showcase the sound of the great guitar I've landed and so I don't want anything that colors my tone too much (or that makes it sound like every other Ibanez that's outfitted with the same pickup, you know?).

Would you still suggest PAF Pro and Norton for me with these things in mind?

Thanks-
Gaucho
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-10-2012, 04:50 PM
 
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Re: Picking some DiMarzio pickups.

for the OP, have you considered any brands other than dimarzio. seymour duncan do a pretty big line up, and theres other brands out there now - bareknuckle, kent armstrong, even things such as the PRS dragon II or the HFS/59 combo are very versatile, and belong in mahogany bodies!

just food for thought!
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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-10-2012, 05:30 PM
 
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Re: Picking some DiMarzio pickups.

Steve special-bridge
Fred or Paf Pro-neck
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-10-2012, 08:56 PM
 
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Re: Picking some DiMarzio pickups.

Quote:
Originally Posted by slimpotatoes View Post
Don't know about MF's custom V220 but I believe the '80s V220s were hardrock maple, not mahogany, unless you buck'd up for the curly maple or koa.
I think you're looking for a bridge pup that'll get '70s bluesy crunch, '80s EMG down-tune metal & easy harmonics? You might try the DP166 The Breed or the very much under-rated Super Distortion. In any event, it sounds like you're going to need an amp modeler and some decent pedals. I'd like to hear what pickup choice you make and your rig set-up when you're set on your sound.
I was gonna suggest Super Distortion or Breeds too.

Paf Pro is definitely a good choice as well.

If it wasn't just a dimarzio focused question I'd actually suggest Bare Knuckle VHII, Holy Divers or Rebel Yells.
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-10-2012, 09:13 PM Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: California
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Re: Picking some DiMarzio pickups.

@The folks who suggested other brands - Yeah, I have considered others. DiMarzio pickups, specifically the ones I've listed, are all pickups I've tried in other guitars and love the way they sound.

I have a Les Paul that's my rhythm guitar workhorse for recording stuff, all Mahogany with a rosewood fretboard, with a JB in the bridge, and I love it. This guitar was mainly headed for my lead work, and DiMarzio pickups just do it for me. Planning a build in the future for either EMG or Rockfields. I really really like the Mafia pickup.

As far as other more obscure brands, haven't ever tried any bkp's, the PRS Dragons are okay, not a fan of PRS pickups in terms of lead, more for rhythms. The Dirtyfingers pickups by Gibson are others I've considered too.

Last edited by shreddybits; 02-10-2012 at 09:21 PM.
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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-11-2012, 07:24 AM
 
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Re: Picking some DiMarzio pickups.

...or the Suhr Doug Aldrich pickups (designed to go in his les pauls!) sound HUGE! listen to any of the new whitesnake albums to hear them!
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