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
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 -
D-Activator (Original or X?)
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