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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Is a X2n in the bridge and a Paf pro in the neck a good combination for hard rock and metal?

I'm told the X2n is a very high powered pickup that can really scream and the paf pro is a good building block pickup for any combination that just adds some good diversity to any setup.

oppinons?

thanks
 

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Yeah that's fine. The X2N will out-power the PAF Pro, but it's not really a bad thing. If you coil cut them when they're on together (either automatically or with an additional switch) you should get a good, usable cleaner sound with some output drop, but in a good way. I'm not a fan of the X2N, so without knowing what you play and what your amp is, it's hard to say whether these would be the BEST pickups for you personally, but it's totally a valid combination IMO.

BUT...Here's a thought. One pickup that I love in the neck is the Megadrive. It has one bar magnet coil, like the X2N, and one allen pole coil. It was marketed as a bridge pickup but I feel it's a little to trebly for the bridge. Plus each coil is very different from the other. The bar coil is loud and fat, while the pole coil is clean and glassy. It is higher output, though, so it should be combined with a higher output bridge pickup. In your case, the X2N is about as hot as they come. An X2N/Megadrive combo woul dbe super cool IMO. Dimarzio doesn't advertise the Megadrive, but they'll probably let you order one. Even if they don't, I know several places to find used ones.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I play metal mostly but i like to have a pickup that sounds OK clean aswell becuase even tho i'm a metal head i like to play less heavy stuff aswell with clearer tones i guess. You could pretty much call me a metal head who has a open mind in music. I'm into jazz and classical aswell as metal. Maybe i went a bit overkill with the idea of the X2N i am not sure.

AMP wise i use peavey amps at the moment but in the future i'm going to get a line6 spider.

CUrrently i use the transtube series of peavey amps. Currently i only have 1 guitar but its a mahogany body and a fixed bridge with a maple neck from what i understand and its a set in neck rather than a bolt on. Put simply its a SZ520 Except it was a earlier production one so it didnt come with Duncan/ibanez pickups.

I'm kinda new to this gear stuff and knowledge of it but i've been reading up on sites to learn. And this will be the first time i've ever gotten pickups upgraded in a guitar and i guess i was looking for something diverse. I'd prefer to stay away from active pickups tho they seem tedious to me becuase i dont know if my guitar can be set up so teh batteries are easy to change but i'd prefer just to stay away from them fullstop.
 

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Hmmm... I don't find the X2N having a very bland, sterile clean tone like high gain EMGs. Yes, the clean is very compressed but there is a measure of dynamics there still; it works out great for funk (when split) or when doodling some clean jazz lines with your tone rolled down. The thing is, for jazz, the X2N makes the thinner strings balance out nicely with the rest, which is always a problem if you use thin strings.

As for the X2N pushing everythign into overdrive... Just don't jam it too close to the strings. ;) You don't need THAT much overdrive do you?

I used a X2N and a Humbucker From Hell together before, and i managed to balanced the 2 together volume-wise. Granted, I had to lower my X2N considerably but in the end, things were fine. :) I don't think you'll find a problem balancing the PAF Pro with the X2N.

I have done a recording of the X2N in a mahogany guitar, an S520EX here:
X2N Showcase

Its all X2N on rhythm and lead. S520EX running into an Ibanez TS9DX then Boss SD-2 and to the JC Clean of a Roland Microcube, finally into my PC.

I can safely say, you put an X2N into the thick mahogany body of the SZ, expect a really crushing tone.
 

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Hey man... heh... I listed the efx and amps there already. ;)

Its a S520EX running into an Ibanez TS9DX then Boss SD-2 and to the JC Clean of a Roland Microcube, finally into my PC.

Thats it. Pretty rudimentry but you get the idea how tight the X2N is.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
gah sorry i kinda saw your approval of the paf pro x2n combo then went OOOOO clip so i listened to it.

I shoulda read the message properly...

i feel stupid now lol sorry abou that.

Your good...i've been learning sweep picking lately... i need to find some good exercises tho.
 

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I used to have an X2N in my old RG550, I wanted a bit more crunch so I opted for Evos. Now, this may sound crazy, but try putting a Tone Zone in the neck with the X2N in the bridge and you'll get a good neck sound with power to match the X2N. The PAF Pro in the neck is a good all around pup but it's not fantastic and doesn't have the characteristic I like in a neck pup. I much prefer the Evo neck but that's definately not enough power to balance with an X2N.
 

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I have used a Tonezone in the neck before... its ultra FAT. Its so fat (on my S520) that its to the point of being ridiculous. This made is awesome for hi gain leads since the higher you go, the notes still have good body... and of course, its great for jazz. The cleans are just as thicker. However, don't hope to strum around with it. Its too thick for that... even on split, when you select the coil with the flat pole pieces, thats the warm, fat coil. If you hope to get a nice split sound, you have to split to the coil with adjustable screw heads.

Actually, when you guys say the pup doesn't balance, you are talking in terms of volume or output/saturation?
 

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well, the output sort of is the volume, it's like comparing an Evo bridge to a PAF Pro in the bridge, the Evo is obviously louder because it's almost twice the output. The Evo neck however is about the same output. Personally the Evo neck is my favorite neck pup, I think it sounds amazing. Just remember, the neck position is naturally louder than the bridge so you don't need as much output in the neck as in the bridge. The TZ is incredibly fat but has the power to balance with the X2N. If you don't like it though, the PAF Pro will balance well too, I'm just saying I think it's very so-so, don't expect amazing things out of it because it's made to cover every ground, not to excel in one area. It's mainly personal preference.
 

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I have an Air Norton/X2N set-up in my S540, matches up pretty well. If I wanted something a little hotter for the neck, I'd go for a regular Norton over the Tone-Zone, simply because it has less bass and gain.
 

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hmmm...praetorian, I don't share the same view... I always thought that volume can always be balanced. Either by raising the lower output pup and/or lowering the hi gain pup. I have balanced the Humbucker From Hell (226mA) with the X2N (510mA) before... true, i had to lower the X2N a lot but on clean, it balanced.

I would think that the issue lies in how much saturation/output the pup gives... switching from the X2N to the HFH, I did feel a drop in gain.

Hence, I believe you can choose to have any combination of pups because you wouldn't have an unbalanced volume, but rather, you will have to deal with less gain on one pup.

It is true that neck pups don't need to be so hi output because the strings at that area are vibrating harder....

Anyone has a view on this?
 

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I agree with Shredcows. You can actually balance most pups, although the tone and response change quite a bit when you adjust the height.

X2N and Paf Pro are my exact combo and I love it. I find it well balanced in my RG770DX. It's a strange guitar. Sort of bright (thin maple neck I guess) but also has plenty of lows and sounds very open. Must be because I stripped the paint. She's a total tone whore!

The X2N sounds very tight and punchy, which is good in this particular guitar. It sounds really compressed, which is something I like. Very Nuno-ish. In split mode it is surprisingly twangy and versatile. There's nothing 'smooth' about this pup, but my opinion is, if you want smooth, use the neck pup.

The Paf Pro is sort of bassy and bright at the same time. Very versatile and clean pup. If you choose a darker pup (AN for example) you may cover more ground, but I don't know about the cleans.

I use an FS-1 in the middle, but I think I'll switch to something brighter to cover more ground. The FS-1 sounds fat in an already fat guitar.
 

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I'm using Evos and a fast track in my Rg550, sounds good but I should have gone with a regular single :(. Yeah you can balance the volumes by lowering or raising the pups but I prefer to have the pickup as close to the string as it can be so I can get the harmonics easier. Nothing wrong with moving them though. I used to have an X2N in another Rg550 but it was a very mid heavy guitar so it sounded like a sledgehammer hitting a stump when I played rythm. I'd really like to try an X2N in a really bright alder guitar or something similar, I bet it would scream like crazy. Evo neck is still my favorite neck pup though :p. Lol.
 

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Well I just threw a Kramer Quad Rail in the bridge of my Pro540R, and while it drowns out the two stock IBZUSA stacked hums while in quad mode, as a hum, it's super sweet. As a quad, it's a bit muddy, but that's fine for me. I like a bridge with some depth, and the quad it perfect for that.
 
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