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Which Pups Do You Think Would Be Best In Basswood For Metal, E-standard and drop D-C?

  • Duncan Distortion

    Votes: 2 13.3%
  • Dimarzio D-Sonic (Blade towards bridge)

    Votes: 1 6.7%
  • Dimarzio D Activator

    Votes: 2 13.3%
  • Dimarzio Super 3

    Votes: 8 53.3%
  • Duncan Custom

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Dimarzio Evolution

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Dimarzio Evo 2

    Votes: 2 13.3%
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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
ok.... so im making my own pickups thread, after 6 months of furious searching, and searching, and searching... i'll start off with the questions from the sticky i found so I can be as thorough as possible:

1. What type of music do you like?
Mostly I'm into metal, heavy metal, nu-metal. the bands I listen to/play range anywhere from metallica to AC/DC to All That Remains and As I lay Dying. I'm not really good enough to play alot of the all that remains stuff yet, but thats what I'm into learning. I know alot of the guys in the nu-metal/metalcore genre use actives but I don't want the sterile sound of actives.

2. What type of equipment are you going to be playing through?
I have a Blackstar HT1r for night time playing in my 2nd floor apt, and I also have a Mesa/Boogie Rectoverb Series one. Straight signal no EQ's or pedals yet.

3. What are the specifics of your guitar?
The guitar is an RG1570L with a basswood body, maple neck, and rosewood fretboard.

A. Is it a trem or hardtail?
Trem, but I have a Tremol-no installed so i can lock it and go from E-standard to drop D,C,B or anything in between just like a hardtail

B. maple or rosewood board?
Rosewood

C. how many frets?
24.

D. what controls are on it?
1 Volume, 1 Tone, 5 Way switch with an HSH config.

E. What type of wood is you body made from?
Basswood

F. Are your pickups direct mounted, ring mounted or in a pickguard?
No pickguard... I dont know about the other 2.

right now I have the stock V7/V8 pickups... I think an S7 in the middle :shrug: but i only care about the bridge position atm, neck is an easy pick depending on what I choose for the bridge, and I never even use the middle unless I'm trying to be quiet with chords.

so I've been searching around for the better part of 6 months for a good set of pickups, I really like how the Duncan Distortions sound in a mahogany guitar, but I've heard basswood thins it out a bit, same with the D-sonic (blade towards the bridge)

I want something with a good low-end, nice and chunky for palm mutes and chugging but also good for drop tunings. The lowest ill really go is drop-C. Mostly I'm in either standard, half-step down, or drop-D. I also want something with more sustain, and note clarity.

I thought about the D-activators, heard they were great for metal, but I think they might be a little too much output, say if I wanted to play something simple and low-gain like hells bells... what do you guys think?

I hear people suggest The Breed also for basswood guitars but from what I've read its more for rock-hard rock, not so much metal/heavy metal/nu-metal.

I was looking into the Super 3 today... sounds like a decent choice, I like that it's kind of up there on the output, more than the d-sonic but not as high as the d-activators, and has more low-end than the d-activators... I'd like some input on that.

Right now I have a Duncan Distortion/SH1 '59 combo in my amazon cart, but I think I need more input before I click 'buy' or 'delete'. I've heard people say it sounds awesome and 'chuggariffic', one guy said:
"Distortion I have in my main guitar, and it is a meaty yet fairly clear, pissed off pickup" <--- I want THAT, but some say it sounds thin in basswood...

I'd post some youtube vids of what i heard, but since this is only my 2nd post, it says im not allowed to post links...

some songs I'm either looking to learn or like to play are:

Metallica- enter sandman (doesn't everyone learn this at first? lol)
Metallica- Turn the Page
Guns N Roses- Sweet Child O Mine
All That Remains- Two Weeks (love this song, don't want actives)
As I lay dying- Nothing Left
Seether- Remedy
Disturbed- Down with the sickness (I know Donegan uses Duncans, but it's always in Mahogany guitars)
Disturbed- 10,000 fists
Sevendust- Story of Your Life
and other similar tones

Just to give you an idea... Obviously alot of that could be achieved by amp tweaking also. sorry for the long, drawn-out post/rant, just want to give you guys a clear picture of what I'm looking for.

So, so far from searching on my own I've come down to:

Duncan Distortion (really want it, but not sure about basswood)
Dimarzio Super 3 (need more info, interested, possibly maybe-ish)
D-Sonic (leaning more towards Distortion though)
Dimarzio D-activator (I think too much output, but I've also heard awesome things)
Dimarzio Breed (I think not enough output)
Dimarzio Evolution or Evo2 (dont know much about it... info?)

Any other pickups you guys can think of or any input you guys can give me would be greatly appreciated, as you can tell I'm still a novice at this, I've been playing off and on for about 2 years but I do know what I'm looking for in tone.... just dont know where to get it from and the stock pups aren't giving it to me.
:twisted: :twisted: :twisted: :twisted: :twisted: :twisted: :twisted:
 

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If you want something tight and articulate go with the DiMarzio Dominion bridge. Fantastic for metal. It's only a fairly new pickup, but it's a scorcher. ;)
 

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I would also consider the Dimarzio CrunchLab. It's a little hotter than the D-sonic and cleans up real nice too. Of course this is with the bar towards the neck ala Petrucci. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
Best DiMarzio ever for heavy stuff and shredding IMO. Nothing sounds like it!

It comes with a highly addictive midrange grind, so be careful.
Gotta listen to a couple clips of that one then. Sounds like something I'd want. I like the addictive part hahaha

heres a couple of quick youtube vids of the distortion tone I want.

www.youtube.com/watch?v=ryzie8mham8&list=FLyXwK3xitIHbqfIQcxukvFg&index=17&feature=plpp_video

or this one too

www.youtube.com/watch?v=jZYDYiOIuC8&list=FLyXwK3xitIHbqfIQcxukvFg&index=22&feature=plpp_video

not really into how well it cleans up, I could use the neck PU for that, or the middle. 90% of everything I play is mild to heavy distortion, only time I play clean stuff is when I'm actually doing that learn and master guitar course so I can learn to read music as well, or if the lead-in requires it, like enter sandman.

I checked out the Crunchlab at one point I was actually really interested in it, but alot of people I read reviews on said it wasn't great for metal, that it was too smooth. I'd be interested to hear it from petrucci though so ill look around for a clip of that. I'm not really into his music, but he does have an awesome tone. Wish I could get a clip of him doing some heavier rock/metal as a reference.
 

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Super 3, Dual Sound or a Super Distortion (the last two are the same pickup).

Tight, clear, articulate, versatile, clean (when needed), great for low tunings and they are all brutal and punchy as hell.

Take it from a Death Metal guitarist who's always in Drop A. They're three of the best metal pickups.

I like the D-Sonic a lot too. It can do everything that the other pickups I listed can but it has a lower output so it has a bit more clarity.
 

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Do they make left handed pups?????


JK- I agree that the Super Distortion will do everything you ask of it.....especially through the Recto!!!!
 

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Gotta listen to a couple clips of that one then. Sounds like something I'd want. I like the addictive part hahaha

heres a couple of quick youtube vids of the distortion tone I want.

youtube.com/watch?v=ryzie8mham8&list=FLyXwK3xitIHbqfIQcxukvFg&index=17&feature=plpp_video

or this one too

youtube.com/watch?v=jZYDYiOIuC8&list=FLyXwK3xitIHbqfIQcxukvFg&index=22&feature=plpp_video

^^^^^^ ((still cant post links :| so just copy/paste.... it'll still work w/out the www))

not really into how well it cleans up, I could use the neck PU for that, or the middle. 90% of everything I play is mild to heavy distortion, only time I play clean stuff is when I'm actually doing that learn and master guitar course so I can learn to read music as well, or if the lead-in requires it, like enter sandman.

I checked out the Crunchlab at one point I was actually really interested in it, but alot of people I read reviews on said it wasn't great for metal, that it was too smooth. I'd be interested to hear it from petrucci though so ill look around for a clip of that. I'm not really into his music, but he does have an awesome tone. Wish I could get a clip of him doing some heavier rock/metal as a reference.
Here ya go!

Throwback to his Ibanez days -
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Replacing your pickups is not the best way to go in order to achieve such tones.
What do you mean? My stock pickups don't sound anywhere near that. Sure I can get a good distorted tone, but it's muddy and has horrible sustain.
 

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Overdrive and distortion pedals, some kind of gate or noise suppressor, and EQ. I use a TC Nova Drive which has both od and dist built in, and use gain stacking to drive my tube amp into hell. Sustain for days. For a straight up distortion pedal on a clean channel, the Boss MT-2 can do pretty much anything you want.

Edit: my pickup vote is super 3, though. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 · (Edited)
Overdrive and distortion pedals, some kind of gate or noise suppressor, and EQ. I use a TC Nova Drive which has both od and dist built in, and use gain stacking to drive my tube amp into hell. Sustain for days. For a straight up distortion pedal on a clean channel, the Boss MT-2 can do pretty much anything you want.

Edit: my pickup vote is super 3, though. :)
yea I do plan on getting a few of those. I don't think I need a distortion pedal as the recto that I have has plenty on tap, I do want to get an eq, and possibly a reverb pedal. I hate that the reverb is on the back of my recto. As for right now though I want to start by doing the pickups and getting a full set up done at the same time, make sure everything's 100%, then see where I stand. I have a feeling also that some of my sustain issue has to do with the guitar not being set up properly. It's a bit buzzy since I went from 9-42 gauge to 10-46, but I figured that would happen.

Edit: just found a boss reverb pedal in my dads storage that he didn't want.. Lol niiice.
 

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Yeah, I don't have anything that fancy, used to but now I'm using a tweaker 15, lots of awesome tones but needs help for serious distortion for nu metal or death etc. Overdrive is enough for it but with a tad smidgen of the distortion in the gain stack, it's off the wall and can instantly shoot the lead out in front of the mix. I'm using an MXR 10 band, it really helps you drive the **** out of the amp at super low bedroom levels. I know some amps' distortion is worthless at lower master volumes, no experience with a recto though.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
The recto does awesome at low levels, still lots of distortion anywhere u go with it. The low end still cuts through the floor a bit though so if I wanna be real quiet I use the blackstar ht1r I have. Only 1 watt amp I've ever heard that can get crazy distortion on its own. U should check it out. I've been thinking of trying out their ht5r also, bigger speaker, a bit more meaty on the low end, still light enough to take on vacation. With the ht1r though if u face it on an angle towards a wall that'll beef up the sound too soo well c.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Do they make left handed pups?????

JK- I agree that the Super Distortion will do everything you ask of it.....especially through the Recto!!!!
Bwahahahahaha there was a time in my pickup search that that actually scared the s**t outta me lol, thank god I don't have to deal with THAT noise... At least with humbuckers anyway.

I'm definitely interested in the super 3 more, and I'll have to give the super distortion a listen, I heard it was more of a rock/hair metal type pickup... Might have to hit up more YouTube lol.*

So out of the super 3 and super distortion, what do you guys think would be best for songs like enter sandman and turn the page, and ALSO be good for more modern metal like all that remains and as I lay dying type stuff? I don't want it to be too much on the modern side, but also not too much towards the 80s metal side. Somewhere in the middle. Or are they both good for that?
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 · (Edited)
I will write a few paragraphs about those pickups tomorrow, except for the D-Activator.
that'd be cool, I'm searching around everywhere to try and decide either super 3 or super distortion, but can't decide either way...
I heard one guy say the super 3 is too dark for a mesa, but it seems like the most popular choice so far so I dont know if thats true or not, and that the super D had more high end, but the chart on the dimarzio website shows the super D has only a little bit more highs and alot more lows, with the mids only dropped a bit.

So through a mesa rectoverb, for both vintage metal and modern metal, should I go Super 3, or Super Distortion?
 

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I gotta play devil's advocate and ask, have you considered Duncan Invaders?

http://www.dimarzio.com/pickup-picker This is a handy tool, although it seems to oversell the newest models.

I can tell that you probably would not like pickups like the Tone-Zone. I don't think Evos would fit either.

I do strongly agree with D.M.7620, and I think either the Super-3 or the Super Distortion are you best DiMarzio options. I personally, would lean towards the super distortion, since it has been a mainstay in metal. Modern bands use it, and even Jimmy Page used it back in the day. Knowing your criteria for vintage and modern, the Super Distortion sounds good!

That's just DiMarzio though, what you really need is a BKP brand pickup! :p
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I checked out bkp they are really good I'd probably get the miracle man if I was going with them, can't spend $400 on pickups though.

I actually checked out the pickup picker a couple times, It likes to suggest d activators to me. Once i got a dominion. But the output on that looks just as low as a breed which confuses me. I'm not saying D Activators are a bad pickup, I know Hammett uses emg pickups also so that would get the tone of Metallica, all that remains, and as I lay dying no problem. But then if I wanna play other vintage stuff or mid-90's stuff like seether or papa roach or something then that won't really work, heard they're kind of a one-trick pony.

Checked out the invaders too, they have a wierd scratchy sound in the vids though.
Also, I've heard that the Duncan distortion sounds more aggressive than the super D. Any truth to that? I mean I just found out it has no low end (B/M/T on it is rated 5/8/9) so I don't know if I want it anymore in basswood... But just wondering.

Brand doesn't matter much to me, btw, dimarzio or Duncan I think they both have great pickups.
Gotta search for something modern sounding with a super D now lol.

Thanks for all your help so far btw guys. Being as I don't have 2-3 guitars I just want to make the best choice for my needs without having to return anything.
 

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Yep, sounds like the super-D is right up your alley!
Good news, too: DiMarzio and Duncan have 90 day return policies that state if you are not happy with the sound of your model, you can exchange it for a different model!!!

Btw, congrats on owning the tremol-no, AKA, the greatest guitar innovation in the last 20 years. ;)
 
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