#1
So I've finally realised the pickups that came with my guitar are a little lacking despite the fact that they're handmade/wired, they don't have the tone that I'm looking for.

I'm trying to get a really nice shred/metal tone, looking at Paul Gilbert, Steve Vai, John Petrucci sort of tone with nice lows and singing highs and I can't achieve it with the pickups I currently have, the tone's good but not good enough in my opinion, it sort of sounds like what Malmsteen would sound like if he used real humbuckers (not P-90s) with a little more gain for the soloing aspect and the rhythm sounds like John Petrucci on the song Constant Motion. Now, I like both of the tones but I feel like I could get a much better tone out of my guitar as the notes aren't clearly defined when I play solos and lead phrases, it seems a little muddy (I'm thinking that could be my Valveking's speaker though).

So, I looked at some reviews for the DiMarzio Tone Zone and found quite a few mixed reviews which made me a bit confused but listening to the sound samples on the DiMarzio website, it sounded good. I also looked at the DiMarzio Air Norton and it sounded like a really nice bridge pickup with great highs.

Is this a good combination?
Is there a better combination?
Should I forget about replacing my pickups and just replace the speaker on my Valveking? (I'm not entirely sure if it's my pickups or my amp)
#2
try the speaker first, it's cheaper. then PM CordoroyEW annd get some neobuckers wound for you
R.I.P. Les Paul, 1915-2009

A man chooses, a slave obeys.