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#1
right now i just have the stock ones in my epi lp, but i have a bit of extra money saved up. i was wondering if they will make that much of a difference. my sound im looking for is a crunchy, aggressive hard rock sound. i listen to guns, led zep, iron maiden, alice cooper, ozzy, nashville pussy, ...

my amp is a pod x3, do you think new pups will improve the sound?
Last edited by crazygnr1996 at Aug 22, 2010,
#2
It will improve your sound and even versatility of the guitar, but the amp is important, as well.

Theres lots of suggestions for new pickups, based on what bands youve listed. Id say 1 of them is Gibson Dirty Fingers.
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#3
Not particularly. New pups are not going to make much of a difference running through a Pod. If you can't get the tones you are after with the Pod a decent amp is the next step.
Last edited by AxSilentxLine at Aug 21, 2010,
#4
Epiphone pups arn't all that bad. But i changed my bridge to a Wilkinson and it sounded way more clean and a little more punchy. You could buy and Irongear Hot Slag? Cheap but bloody good pickups!
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#5
What is your les paul exactly and how much are you willing to spend?
Granted, it's better to buy on a real amp, but it all depends on the dough.
"...I cried. Just for a second. Then I thought, 'I must rock.' "
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#6
Quote by AxSilentxLine
Not particularly. New pups are not going to make much of a difference running through a Pod. If you can't get the tones you are after with the Pod a decent amp is the next step.



^ This
#7
Yes, aftermarket pickups will help, especially if your epi stock pickups aren't very high output. Look into Dimarzios and Seymour Duncans. Or you can check out GFS pickups, but I've never used them. I hear Bare knuckles are good as well, but they're expensive.

As for the POD X3, you can get a lot of cool sounds out of it, but you'll be limited to your pickups in the end. For instance, you can only get so much distortion and out of a low output pickup before it just becomes a muddy mess.
#8
the guitar is an epiphone elitist. cant get a real amp because its too loud for the apartment. ive been through a few amps and none sound as good as the pod at the low volumes they have to be at. budget wise is about 150ish
#9
Quote by W4RP1G
Yes, aftermarket pickups will help, especially if your epi stock pickups aren't very high output. Look into Dimarzios and Seymour Duncans. Or you can check out GFS pickups, but I've never used them. I hear Bare knuckles are good as well, but they're expensive.

As for the POD X3, you can get a lot of cool sounds out of it, but you'll be limited to your pickups in the end. For instance, you can only get so much distortion and out of a low output pickup before it just becomes a muddy mess.



Please DO NOT tell him to buy pickups that are worth as much as the POD he's running through. New Pups WILL NOT make a significant difference through a digital modelling device like a Pod.
#10
Quote by crazygnr1996
the guitar is an epiphone elitist. cant get a real amp because its too loud for the apartment. ive been through a few amps and none sound as good as the pod at the low volumes they have to be at. budget wise is about 150ish


The Elitists are great guitars, have you looked at lower wattage tube amps (Say around 5w)? There seem to be more on the market now than ever before. Maybe something with a headphone jack and a decent pair of headphones?
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#12
Quote by AxSilentxLine


Please DO NOT tell him to buy pickups that are worth as much as the POD he's running through. New Pups WILL NOT make a significant difference through a digital modelling device like a Pod.


In terms of sound differences, this.

But from experience I can say that new pups will have more clarity than epi stock pups (unless elitist pups are better than the garbage ones in my SG)

Aside from the obvious differences I heard in the Peavy Classic, even in my Spider the epi sounded like muddy crap but the H-III with seymour duncans sounded much more clear.
#13
i thoguht about maybe a blackstar or jetcity amp but i mean at super low volumes would those even sound any better? I live in an apartment + my moms husband basically doesnt want to hear any noise whatsoever. yeah its dumb
#14
Quote by AxSilentxLine


Please DO NOT tell him to buy pickups that are worth as much as the POD he's running through. New Pups WILL NOT make a significant difference through a digital modelling device like a Pod.

I'm not trying to midlead him, I've played through a ton of fx units, that was how i played for years, through an fx unit with headhones. When using distortion, you need a higher output pickup to get a good, clean distortion. If you don't have that, there's no point in even trying. PODs are cool and there is a lot of info out there on how to dial in the exact sound you want on the internet, but he needs a guitar that can produce that sound.
#15
Quote by crazygnr1996
the guitar is an epiphone elitist. cant get a real amp because its too loud for the apartment. ive been through a few amps and none sound as good as the pod at the low volumes they have to be at. budget wise is about 150ish


Skip the POD and just get a decent DI box. You can DL free plug-ins/impulses that sound a 100 times better than the stuff you'd have to pay L6 for.
#16
Quote by W4RP1G
I'm not trying to midlead him When using distortion, you need a higher output pickup to get a good, clean distortion.



Yet more misleading. Distortion isn't clean. If your talking about clarity, that comes from a well built well designed amplifier. pickups have a bit to do with it, but the majority of the gain shaping goes on inside the amplifier pre-amp. A well designed amp can give clarity, and high gain at the same time. Such as the SLO.

Now, as far as pickup output goes, you don't need a high output pickup for clarity, that is horseshit. If your playing an amp that is actually going to respond to the pickups, such as a tube amp, or well designed transistor amp , pickups can make a very noticeable difference. However when playing through a digital device such as a pod, he would get a much bigger improvement from an amp upgrade than a pup swap.
#17
Quote by Matt420740
Yet more misleading. Distortion isn't clean. If your talking about clarity, that comes from a well built well designed amplifier. pickups have a bit to do with it, but the majority of the gain shaping goes on inside the amplifier pre-amp. A well designed amp can give clarity, and high gain at the same time. Such as the SLO.

Now, as far as pickup output goes, you don't need a high output pickup for clarity, that is horseshit. If your playing an amp that is actually going to respond to the pickups, such as a tube amp, or well designed transistor amp , pickups can make a very noticeable difference. However when playing through a digital device such as a pod, he would get a much bigger improvement from an amp upgrade than a pup swap.

Ok dude, I'm about done arguing with you, you clearly have no idea what you're even saying, and you obviously haven't run shitty pickups and good pickups through a good amp and listened to the difference.

Yes, you get better distortion on a better amp. But you also get better distortion on better pickups. That's all I'm saying. Don't nit pick and read into every little thing and twist it to make your own point. Stock pickups almost always get upgraded for a reason.
#19
Quote by W4RP1G
Ok dude, I'm about done arguing with you, you clearly have no idea what you're even saying, and you obviously haven't run shitty pickups and good pickups through a good amp and listened to the difference.

Yes, you get better distortion on a better amp. But you also get better distortion on better pickups. That's all I'm saying. Don't nit pick and read into every little thing and twist it to make your own point. Stock pickups almost always get upgraded for a reason.


That was the first time I had addressed you. It was another user who disagreed with you the first time. And you're right, I obviously have no idea what I'm saying, seeing that I build tube amps and guitars as a hobby. Nobody that does that could know anything about tone. I guess everyone else here is wrong as well. Except you of course all mighty tone god. Please........

TS, its up to you what you do, but if your not happy with the sound you're getting from your pod, I don't recommend spending a wad of cash on some pickups. You'd be better off getting an amplifier you're happy with.
#20
Quote by AxSilentxLine


Please DO NOT tell him to buy pickups that are worth as much as the POD he's running through. New Pups WILL NOT make a significant difference through a digital modelling device like a Pod.


Bullshit, it'll make more of a difference if anything through a POD, since it's not an amp, the pickup has more impact than the molding software.

Trust me, you throw a good pickup into a guitar, and you'll notice a difference, no matter how shitty the amp, you'll notice something.

Plus, having a guitar with decent pickups is a must, might as well do it now, then when you get a better amp, you wont have to worry about it.
#22
Quote by crazygnr1996
to give u an idea of the sound i like, something like this

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HDVQtClm40g

just a simple hard rock song. ive owned a vox vt15 and a roland cube amp and both were just really bad. if i could get a big sound like that above at low volume id be set.



He's playing through a Carvin Legacy there. Get yourself a good small wattage tube amp and you'll be happy. There are several on the market that would fill your needs.
#23
which one sounds best at lower volumes? blackstar ht 5 or jet city 20h? are there any other low watt amps like these for around the same price?
#24
TS the Elitists come with Gibson USA 50/60 pickups. They are way better than stock Epis and should be fine. A new amp will be the best approach and if you can't manage it what headphones are you using for the POD?
Moving on.....
#26
Quote by ethan_hanus
Bullshit, it'll make more of a difference if anything through a POD, since it's not an amp, the pickup has more impact than the molding software.

Trust me, you throw a good pickup into a guitar, and you'll notice a difference, no matter how shitty the amp, you'll notice something.

Plus, having a guitar with decent pickups is a must, might as well do it now, then when you get a better amp, you wont have to worry about it.

If you're going to make bold statements and influence people make sure you're not talking out your ass. I'm not saying that you won't hear any difference between some BKP's and stock Epi pups, i'm saying that pups that are worth as much as the Pod he's using are not a good investment unless he has a decent amp. This is fact.
#28
Quote by AxSilentxLine
If you're going to make bold statements and influence people make sure you're not talking out your ass. I'm not saying that you won't hear any difference between some BKP's and stock Epi pups, i'm saying that pups that are worth as much as the Pod he's using are not a good investment unless he has a decent amp. This is fact.



Whoever said he should get BKP's? I'm just saying, the pickup is going to change his tone dramatically, it always does with Amp sims, the difference is very huge and noticeable, and it will make his tone better.

I should know, I've been recording DI for years, and I'm telling you, pickups will improve his tone.

And who are you to make this decision, if the man wants pups, give him pups, the amp sim is good enough, hell of alot better than an MG.

When it comes to DI or amp sims, your pickups, and the quality of your DAW and interface effect your tone the most, unless your using a shitty VST amp, but there are so many nice ones for free you should never be using a shitty one.
#29
Quote by ethan_hanus
Whoever said he should get BKP's? I'm just saying, the pickup is going to change his tone dramatically, it always does with Amp sims, the difference is very huge and noticeable, and it will make his tone better.

I should know, I've been recording DI for years, and I'm telling you, pickups will improve his tone.

And who are you to make this decision, if the man wants pups, give him pups, the amp sim is good enough, hell of alot better than an MG.

When it comes to DI or amp sims, your pickups, and the quality of your DAW and interface effect your tone the most, unless your using a shitty VST amp, but there are so many nice ones for free you should never be using a shitty one.

There's a big difference between DI and amp sims, someone with recording experience should know this, and since TS is not recording or using DI's I don't see the relevance of your post anyway.
#30
Quote by AxSilentxLine
If you're going to make bold statements and influence people make sure you're not talking out your ass. I'm not saying that you won't hear any difference between some BKP's and stock Epi pups, i'm saying that pups that are worth as much as the Pod he's using are not a good investment unless he has a decent amp. This is fact.

I could be wrong, but isn't the cheapest POD X3 like $400 american? You can get a set of Duncan Blackouts for $180. About the same for Dimarzios. I'm not seeing how that's the same price.

Modeling software only takes the sound of your pickup and models that, therefore if your pickup sounds shitty, your modeled pickup will sound shitty. I don't see how this is so hard to comprehend.

A good amp is just as important as good pickups in my eyes, but I'd consider the POD X3 to be sufficient for what he plans to do. I have a Boss ME70 which is cheaper, and I hear a massive difference between cheap pickups and good pickups.

You guys are trying to convince this guy to get an amp, which he already stated he doesn't need and not to upgrade his pickups so he can try and make his current setup work.
#31
Quote by ethan_hanus
Bullshit, it'll make more of a difference if anything through a POD, since it's not an amp, the pickup has more impact than the molding software.

Trust me, you throw a good pickup into a guitar, and you'll notice a difference, no matter how shitty the amp, you'll notice something.

Plus, having a guitar with decent pickups is a must, might as well do it now, then when you get a better amp, you wont have to worry about it.

You should build a rig around a good amp that should be first priority, pups will make little difference for ur setup.
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#32
Quote by W4RP1G
I could be wrong, but isn't the cheapest POD X3 like $400 american? You can get a set of Duncan Blackouts for $180. About the same for Dimarzios. I'm not seeing how that's the same price.

Modeling software only takes the sound of your pickup and models that, therefore if your pickup sounds shitty, your modeled pickup will sound shitty. I don't see how this is so hard to comprehend.

A good amp is just as important as good pickups in my eyes, but I'd consider the POD X3 to be sufficient for what he plans to do. I have a Boss ME70 which is cheaper, and I hear a massive difference between cheap pickups and good pickups.

You guys are trying to convince this guy to get an amp, which he already stated he doesn't need and not to upgrade his pickups so he can try and make his current setup work.

I am saying that new pickups will make a far greater difference with a decent amp, I am not trying to turn him off his Pod. Again, I am not saying that there is no difference, I am saying that the difference will be neglegible. TS, if you want to go out and spend all your money on some nice pups go for it, but be prepared to become a running joke in UG.

The Epi Elitist pups are not too bad by any means, if you have a problem with your tone IMO it is your POD, not your pups.
#33
Quote by AxSilentxLine
There's a big difference between DI and amp sims, someone with recording experience should know this, and since TS is not recording or using DI's I don't see the relevance of your post anyway.



There is no difference actually, amp sims are used through the DI method, anyone with recording experience should know this. DI=Direct Input

TS is using the DI method to play an amp sim through his computer, there is nothing wrong with this, some people live in apartments and can't make a lot of noise.

But I'm not gona argue with you pin heads about this.
#34
Quote by ethan_hanus
There is no difference actually, amp sims are used through the DI method, anyone with recording experience should know this. DI=Direct Input

TS is using the DI method to play an amp sim through his computer, there is nothing wrong with this, some people live in apartments and can't make a lot of noise.

But I'm not gona argue with you pin heads about this.

I know what Direct Injection (Direct Input) is. You obviously don't. Direct Injection is the method of connecting to an interface or DAW, an Amp Sim is where the sound is modelled. TS is using a Pod, not a DAW or computer. If you know nothing about the thread or topic refrain from posting and making misleading comments.

You were obviously referring to DI before in the sense of recording to a DAW and then reamping your signal as one would often do in a studio. A Pod has DI capabilities built in (converting an unbalanced guitar signal into a digital one) but again if you have the experience you claim you do you should know that DI into a computer and DAW is very different to into a POD.
Last edited by AxSilentxLine at Aug 22, 2010,
#35
Well, many videos I watch on youtube of people doing cover songs on a POD X3 sound very good. If it was me, I'd find some instructions online on exactly how to get the sound I want and see if it works. If not, then I'd definitely upgrade the pickups. But I'd make sure I was playing through good headphones first. I bought a pair of Senheisser headphones at guitar center for $50 and they sound no where near as good as my $100 shures when playing on my Boss ME-70.

I understand the arguments everyone is making in here, and I whole heartedly agree that a good amp is more important for tone and clarity than pickups. I do, however, believe his POD X3 is more than sufficient to produce a good sound through headphones and see no reason to buy something else.

So yeah, find a reputable source to tell you how to dial in the exact sound you want and see if it works for ya. Just do a search for POD X3 on youtube and you might find something. I know that one guy who does all the Van Halen cover gets an amazing sound out of his POD.
#37
Quote by crazygnr1996
which one sounds best at lower volumes? blackstar ht 5 or jet city 20h? are there any other low watt amps like these for around the same price?


If you have a budget of $150, you probably won't be able to afford a good tube amp. Another thing, is that tube amps are quite loud so even a 5w can fill up a room/apt. Perhaps you should look into a Peavey Vypyr Modeling amp. It'll be similar to the modeling software you're using, in that it can dial in an array of tones, and it does it well. I can say from experience with it that I can easily dial in a tone like the one you showed us by using a Plxi or B-Kat model with a Tubescreamer effect. Another plus to this amp is that it has a headphone input that sounds quite well with the proper headphones.

Just my 2 cents.
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#38
Quote by crazygnr1996
cant get a real amp because its too loud for the apartment.


That's not a very valid argument. I use my 100W 2X12 in my apartment almost every day. When I want it to, it can get quiet.

Amps have volume knobs for a reason.

I think you'll be a lot happier with a real amp. For a little over your budget, you can get something like a Peavey Royal 8 and an overdrive/distortion pedal, and it will sound a lot better (imo) than a digital modeler.

And that's only a 5W amp. The point I'm trying to make is that the size of the amp doesn't matter, because all amps have volume knobs. If I can run my 100W so low that I can barely hear it, I think you'll be fine with anything that's smaller.
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#39
I had an Elitist and the pickups were fine. I had a POD and the sound was (kind of) fine. Just get better at playing as a lot of the tone is in the fingers.
#40
The blackstar ht-5 would be good for home use.
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