#1
I've been playing guitar on-off for 6 years, but over the past year have been taking my playing more seriously and progressing as a player as i have rediscoverd my love. I've recently joined a band & got myself a decent amp, but i've got a problem. The guitar that i'm using is a budget £140 ibanez Gax30 (not the most sophisticated of guitars) but i like the action, look and simplicity of the model. So my question is: is it worth me changing the pickups on my guitar or investing in a new ones? the neck humbuckers are abit muddy and i dont think the current pickups are gunna cut it live. With a tight budget, if i could invest in some pickups to improve my tone and not spend £300-400 on a new guitar would be my ideal situation. can someone help? I play hard rock, that alexisonfire/biffy tone. cheers x
#2
Yeah, I changed the neck and bridge pickups on my strat to great effect. Check out the pickup selector tool on Dimarzio's website. That should help point you in the right direction.
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Last edited by justinb904 at Jan 8, 2010,
#4
Personally, I'd take the money you were going to use for PUs, sell your guitar, add a few more dollars on top and move up a notch or two in guitar quality.
The money spent on PUs in your current guitar may improve tone but will not increase it's value (ie when you sell it'll still be only worth what you paid for it basically). The choice is yours of course but just remember there'll come a time (not too far off in the future from the sounds of it) when your Gax30 won't be enough for you. If you upgraded the PUs they should removed the originals re-installed before selling it. The question then becomes what to do with the PUs, sell them used or put them into your next guitar which if you really buy a better one, may not need them.
I guess it's a question of short term pain for long term gain vs quick and easy short trm solution.
Moving on.....
#5
Quote by shredzilla617
go active u wont regret it. i put emg's in a squire and it sounded like a million bucks.


Schecter > Ibanez


#6
i agree with the not PU decition ...try getting new guitar, its worth it, you will improve in all directions instead of just one
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#7
Some will say yes some will say no. My suggestion is yes, however keep the stock pickups just in case you decide you don't want to hang on to the guitar or you just get a better guitar down the road that would benefit from the pickups you put into your Gax30.
Upgrading pickups is never really a bad idea, just be smart about it.
#8
If your not worried about the resale value swapping pups can be a big improvement but you'll never sell it for what you have into it.

For Example: I have an Agile Double Cutaway with Gibson USA 57 Classics, the pick ups are worth $100.00 ea I got the guitar for $200.00. The guitar is awesome but even with the original pups it would still have sold for $200.00 so I basically got the pups for free or the guitar for free depending how you look at it.

John
#9
different pickups will definately improve the tone of the guitar. more importantly though, they will improve articulation and definition. that being said, a good set isnt cheap (about $100 each CAD) so your looking at about 100 pounds (dont have the symbol on my keyboard) for decent pickups before install. there is no sense looking at cheaper aftermarket pickups, replacing crap with crap results in, well, crap.

it really depends on if you think the guitar is worth investing in. if you truely love it and how it plays, go for it. but try another couple guitars first, you may just find your guitar isnt so nice compared to a better one...
#10
If you like the feel of the guitar, and it sounds good acoustically, then go ahead and change the pickups. If you are going to sell it, put the stock pickups back in and sell it, and keep your good ones for another guitar you might possibly get down the road.

However, on the flip side, if you won't be gigging soon, and your tone won't matter as much, you might be able to save up enough money before playing live and get a new guitar.

So just ask yourself this question:

Will I have enough money to afford a new guitar by the time I'm gigging? If no, get new pickups. If yes, screw the pickups and get a higher quality guitar with good pickups stock.

When it comes to band practices, your tone doesn't matter as much as it does live, so as long as you have a decent amp, you can get away with having bad pickups.
Last edited by DIMEBAGLIVEDON at Jan 8, 2010,
#11
Pick ups can make or break a guitar. I've seen and heard cheap guitars with new pick ups in them that actually do the guitar no justice. Poor wood and construction doesnt bring out a solid tone. That's not the case for all guitars but it's possible. If you're going to get serious try something that maybe a bit more reliable guitar wise. It's truely up to you. There is no right or wrong here.
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#13
What amp are you using?
If it's not great then no, it's not worth buying pickups - you'd just be throwing your money away.
Actually called Mark!

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#14
I'd go with the new guitar option if you can afford it. If you want a stop gap, have a look at Iron Gear - great pickups, without the huge price tag - they'll improve your current guitar to a point where you'll be able to use it as a backup when you can afford a new guitar in my opinion.
Last edited by mark_wuk at Jan 9, 2010,
#15
Quote by shredzilla617
go active u wont regret it. i put emg's in a squire and it sounded like a million bucks.


I'm sorry, This just isn't the best direction. With a SN like yours and a quote like that I wonder if you can really tell a difference or if you're just a troll. It's all subjective and some guitars may not be worth putting new pickups into if you aren't building them yourself. SO... To the OP: You may want to look into getting a new guitar, Or at least go playing a few in stores to see what you may be missing out on. Do you know how to set your guitar up? Guitar setup makes a huge difference.
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#16
I'd say new guitar but if money is really tight now, go look at Irongear pickup's site. around £25 each has to be a better deal than £70 for some other brand and more than that for the likes of Bareknuckles
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#17
Thanks for the help guys, i think im going to invest in some pickups for my current guitar and see how it goes, have that stop gap and then save up for a new guitar afterwards. That way i'll have a decent backup aswell. I'm going to do abit more research on the pickup front before i decide which ones to install. This is my first post and i'm surprised how quick it got responded to, im sure ill be making more posts again

Cheers for all the advice.
#18
What Amp Are You Using????
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#19
Even some of the mid to higher range Ibanez's need new pickups in my opinion (My RG550 & S470FM both sounded considerably better with DiMarzios) - A lot of standard pickups are pretty average.

Definately look at new pickups - Even though you have a cheap Ibanez it will still be built well & be reliable, so a great set of passive pickups will make a big difference.
#20
Quote by steven seagull
What amp are you using?
If it's not great then no, it's not worth buying pickups - you'd just be throwing your money away.



MY GOD!

OP PLEASE ANSWER THIS! IT'S THE MOST IMPORTANT QUESTION ASKED IN THIS THREAD.

All of the advice so far has sucked terribly btw.
Guitars:
Ibanez RG7421 (MIJ) Dimarzio SD-7/AN-7
ESP LTD EC407 (stock)
Ibanez S320 (Tone Zone/PAF Pro)
ESP LTD EC1000 (stock)
Seagull C-6 Concert Acoustic
Godin MultiAc Nylon Encore

Amps:
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Peavey 6505+
Marshall DSL100
Mesa Boogie Tremoverb
Mesa Boogie 412 Rectifier Standard Cab
Randall Iso112

Pedals:
Horizon Devices Precision Overdrive
ISP Decimator
Maxon OD808
MXR Carbon Copy
Shure GLX wireless system
Visual Sound Liquid Chorus
#21
if you are happy with the feel of your guitar and you dont have any problems with it go for it. i recommend passive pickups because actives can give you overtones from string noise.
#22
If you've been playing 6 years and are really starting to get back into it, I'd say new guitar. You deserve it. I have no idea how you've survived so long on only a budget Ibanez. You have my commendation. If though, you can't afford it, then new p/ups to hold you over for now.
Spin 'round carousel when your horse isn't screwed in.

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#25
K, go buy yourself some pickups then

Maybe look at some Irongears - there's no point going too over the top with pickups on a cheap guitar but Irongear are good value, maybe a Hot Slag in the bridge with a Rolling Mill in the neck.
Actually called Mark!

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