#1
Hey all, hopefully this is the right place to post this. I'm thinking of upgrading the pickups in my ancient Aria. The config is humbucker-single-single. I know little about single coil/humbucker combos, does anyone have any recommendations? I generally go for a Hard Rock/Heavy Metal tone. Cheers!
#2
Try checking what your favorite players use for pickups. Or try going around in youtube or some websites of pickups and go listen to them.

Pickups like :

BareKnuckle Pickups
D'Marzios
Seymour Duncans
EMGs

Have pickups that work for Rock and Metal very well.



BTW what do you have for an amp? Most of your tone comes from it.

#3
A lot of my favourite guitarists use a HH config, and I have no end of HH guitars. I want to upgrade my Aria because it's something a bit different. I've looked around online and haven't really found anything helpful, hence asking on here. I'm aware of decent brands of pickup, but not the models/combinations to go for

I use a Randall RG50TC for rehearsal and a Mode Four (I know....) for gigging. I've upgraded the pickups in all my other guitars, and they all sound the way I like them through my rig, just the Aria stocks sound a bit pants.
#4
Well, I can't really tell you what pickups to use. XD My knowledge about pickups is very limited. XD Wait for the the Tone Freaks to stumble upon this thread. I'm sure they can help you out.

#6
what's your budget?

what do you mean by hard rock and metal (list some bans whose tones you like)?

when you say something a bit different from your hss guitar, i'm guessing you still want the hard rock/metal tone from the bridge pu, but are ok with the other pickups' being more vintage/single coily in tone? or do you still want to be able to get a high gain lead tone from the neck pickup?
I'm an idiot and I accidentally clicked the "Remove all subscriptions" button. If it seems like I'm ignoring you, I'm not, I'm just no longer subscribed to the thread. If you quote me or do the @user thing at me, hopefully it'll notify me through my notifications and I'll get back to you.
Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#7
Budget per pup is probably £40-£50.

When I say Hard Rock and Metal, I mean a very wide area. I already have the tone I want with my other guitars (the tone I have is that similar to Blind Guardian). I mean I'm not looking for a jazz or country tone or anything like that. To be honest, I won't know what I'm looking for until I find it, which is why I'm asking for recommendations. Does that make sense?

The gainy humbucker with more vintage single coils sounds quite appealing, but like I said, throw some recommendations at me
#8
What kind of guitar is it? Strat-style I'm guessing. If that's the case, well, maybe the JB would be good but if you're going for metal you want to get something really pushed. Maybe even a Duncan Invader. I just built a strat and I dropped the Invader in there. I play fast pop punk and harder rock. It's a decent pickup. Probably the hottest you can get without converting to active pickups like the EMGs (which are even better).

If you like a really smooth more classic distortion sound though (think '80s metal and rock), I might steer you towards something like a Dimarzio PAF or Duncan '59, or a Duncan Custom. I really like the Custom. It has a smooth, warm, even distortion with a bit more output than the PAF or '59.
www.miraclemaxmusic.com

"Punk is not dead. Punk will only die when corporations can exploit and mass produce it."
Jello Biafra

(so is it dead?)
#9
yeah i know what you mean Bit like with speakers, pickups are a bit of a crapshoot. Just try to buy from a company who'll let you swap for another pickup from their range if you really don't like them.

And yeah, something like a reasonably high output humbucker (i wouldn't go out-and-out brootz just so they half balance, lol) with vintage-style single coils would probably work, so you could still get the tones you need, but also so the guitar is a bit different and more versatile than your other guitars.

Another option is the reasonably hot bridge pickup (for hard rock/metal), vintage output middle (for cleans/blues), and a bit higher output neck single so it can handle both higher gain solos but also softer stuff.
I'm an idiot and I accidentally clicked the "Remove all subscriptions" button. If it seems like I'm ignoring you, I'm not, I'm just no longer subscribed to the thread. If you quote me or do the @user thing at me, hopefully it'll notify me through my notifications and I'll get back to you.
Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#10
Quote by rawkandrowl
What kind of guitar is it? Strat-style I'm guessing. If that's the case, well, maybe the JB would be good but if you're going for metal you want to get something really pushed. Maybe even a Duncan Invader. I just built a strat and I dropped the Invader in there. I play fast pop punk and harder rock. It's a decent pickup. Probably the hottest you can get without converting to active pickups like the EMGs (which are even better).

If you like a really smooth more classic distortion sound though (think '80s metal and rock), I might steer you towards something like a Dimarzio PAF or Duncan '59, or a Duncan Custom. I really like the Custom. It has a smooth, warm, even distortion with a bit more output than the PAF or '59.


Yeah it's a strat shape. Those are all good rec's for the humbucker, which single coils would work with which?
#11
Quote by Dave_Mc
yeah i know what you mean Bit like with speakers, pickups are a bit of a crapshoot. Just try to buy from a company who'll let you swap for another pickup from their range if you really don't like them.

And yeah, something like a reasonably high output humbucker (i wouldn't go out-and-out brootz just so they half balance, lol) with vintage-style single coils would probably work, so you could still get the tones you need, but also so the guitar is a bit different and more versatile than your other guitars.

Another option is the reasonably hot bridge pickup (for hard rock/metal), vintage output middle (for cleans/blues), and a bit higher output neck single so it can handle both higher gain solos but also softer stuff.


Good ideas, both of them. What setup would you go for? Gimme some ideas
#12
Well I don't have much experience with single coil pickups to be honest....in my Tele I put a Li'l 59 in there which is a humbucker in a single coil size. I hear that Mighty Mite and Guitarfetish.com both sell really good cheap single coils though. If it were me that's what I would try out. But that's just speaking from the standpoint of having heard them recommended and not from personal experience.
www.miraclemaxmusic.com

"Punk is not dead. Punk will only die when corporations can exploit and mass produce it."
Jello Biafra

(so is it dead?)
#13
it's really up to you and depends on what you want- I can't answer that for you. Either of those ideas are worth considering if they do what you want.

regarding actual specific recommendations- that's tricky. Your budget is a bit strange- it's more than the cheap-but-cheerful options (e.g. tonerider or irongear), but you'll struggle to get duncans or dimarzios for that kind of money, even if you buy from thomann (plus if you ask me they're too dear in europe anyway, they make decent stock pickups, but personally I wouldn't ever retrofit them when you can get, in my opinion, much better handwound pickups for around the same money or even less).

There are a couple of handwinders who make pickups around your budget- catswhisker, and wizard (whose humbuckers are over budget, but the singles are under, so it evens out). I haven't tried them, though, so that's not a personal recommendation.
I'm an idiot and I accidentally clicked the "Remove all subscriptions" button. If it seems like I'm ignoring you, I'm not, I'm just no longer subscribed to the thread. If you quote me or do the @user thing at me, hopefully it'll notify me through my notifications and I'll get back to you.
Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#14
Ok, lets throw the budget out of the window (I don't have to get them all at once, right? And theres always the ol' bay ). Does that make things easier?
#15
well, yes and no I haven't tried wizard or catswhisker- they may be as good as bareknuckles (or other similarly-priced pickups) for half the price.

But i mean if you up the budget, then things like bareknuckle, bulldog etc. would be an option.

As would things like duncan and dimarzio. I don't like them (for how much they cost here) but it's your call.
I'm an idiot and I accidentally clicked the "Remove all subscriptions" button. If it seems like I'm ignoring you, I'm not, I'm just no longer subscribed to the thread. If you quote me or do the @user thing at me, hopefully it'll notify me through my notifications and I'll get back to you.
Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#16
To be honest man, I just need a direction to go in. The two setups you suggested were a great start, I just need a good example of a set for both. Thanks for your help so far
#17
Seymour Duncan JB in the bridge, great pickup and so versatile. For the single coils, im not too sure..

Edit: since youre in the uk bareknuckle would be a good choice, ive heard lots of good things about them and plus they're in the UK.
Last edited by UnseenBucket at Mar 22, 2011,
#18
oh ok

For hottish bridge combined with vintage single coils:

duncan: any of the customs really (custom, custom custom or custom V, basically depending on whether you prefer alnico II, V or ceramic) for the bridge pickup, even a JB would work (though wouldn't be my choice), then ssl1s or alnico II pros (if you prefer a sweeter warmer tone) for the singles.

dimarzio: tone zone (if you want a warm pickup), or maybe air zone or norton (though I haven't tried those two). then for the singles I'd probably go with the virtual vintages, or maybe some of the area pickups (haven't tried the areas).

Bareknuckle: i haven't tried these specific ones, but something like holy diver or nailbomb for bridge, then maybe irish tours or slowhands (they're both a little hotter than the actual vintage BKP singles, but i think i've heard people say they match up better with buckers- however if you do decide to go BKP, don't go with what i say, email them or ask on their forum for advice... i'm only suggesting specific models to give you a rough idea of what's available)

For the hottish bridge, vintage middle and hotter neck

Duncan: same suggestions for bridge and middle, then for the neck, I dunno, maybe an ssl5? I haven't really tried duncan's hotter singles

Dimarzio: ditto duncan, same bridge and middle, but just get one of the hotter virtual vintages or areas for the neck.

bkp: again, maybe holy diver or nailbomb for the bridge, then apaches/mothers milk/sultans for middle, and then maybe irish tour/slowhand for neck.

You can go hotter again for the neck pickup- for duncan, e.g. cool rails or one of the stacks, for dimarzio one of their rails pickups (cruiser? chopper?), and from bkp maybe a trilogy suite. But again you'd want to check with each specific company that that'd work and not sound strange.

For example, my framus has a JB bridge, ssl1 in the middle and hot rails in the neck (it came stock like that, I didn't pick them) and on paper it sounds like a very versatile setup, and it actually is if you use them a certain way (if you split the rails it sounds more vintage), but in another way it's actually kind of a strange setup. I can sorta understand what they were going for, but it wouldn't be what I would pick, put it like that. I see on their newer models they've switched the hot rails for a cool rails.
I'm an idiot and I accidentally clicked the "Remove all subscriptions" button. If it seems like I'm ignoring you, I'm not, I'm just no longer subscribed to the thread. If you quote me or do the @user thing at me, hopefully it'll notify me through my notifications and I'll get back to you.
Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
Last edited by Dave_Mc at Mar 22, 2011,
#20
just throwing this out there - suhr's have some nice vintage sounding singles. the v60's or the f/l's sound pretty good from what ive heard.
#22
If I was looking to go active pickups in my dk2 Jackson with hss would I have to buy each pickup individually or are there sort of matched sets I could buy
#23
Mostly you'd have to buy them seperately, I think, but some companies sell them in sets. Depends what pups you go for.
#24
Quote by Bidley
Wow, thanks guys, and a slightly bigger thanks for Dave_Mc!


no problem I hope it helped a little.

Quote by voleurz
If I was looking to go active pickups in my dk2 Jackson with hss would I have to buy each pickup individually or are there sort of matched sets I could buy


i think actives need different value pots from passives so, while it's possible to have both actives and passives in the one guitar, it is a bit of a pain.

Unless you're asking if you can buy the pickups as a set, in which case the answer is "maybe". You might find some HSS sets, but they might not contain the exact pickups you want, kind of thing.
I'm an idiot and I accidentally clicked the "Remove all subscriptions" button. If it seems like I'm ignoring you, I'm not, I'm just no longer subscribed to the thread. If you quote me or do the @user thing at me, hopefully it'll notify me through my notifications and I'll get back to you.
Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?