#1
Hi everyone!

I picked up a Gibson Les Paul Studio (2014 Anniversary Model) a few months back and I'm thinking of making some aesthetic changes and possibly a pickup change. It came with a kind of aged beige pickguard/pickup surrounds and while i think it looks alright I just dont particularly like the colouring. The guitar itself is in Manhattan Midnight; a kind of dark blue - I'll post a pic in the comments. I already changed the tone/volume pots from the black speed knobs that gibson fit to classic gold ones.

Now I know its all personal opinion, but I'd like to hear other peoples suggestions. I know this guitar doesn't have the best finish in the world, but for me as a guitarist whos only been playing for 2 years I thought a studio was the best option for me.

I've also considered changing the pickups in the guitar. Again the stock pickups are alright in this, they do everything pretty good, however now I've started to get my own playing style I'd like something a little more specialised. What pickups would you guys recommend for Hard Rock and some metal, that also have nice cleans? I play a lot of Gun'n'roses and Metallica. I do want passive pups though, I feel like installing actives - EMG's etc - would ruin it.

TL;DR - I have a Manhattan Midnight Gibson Les Paul studio that I want to customise. What colour plastic do you think look best? Think I should remove the pickguard all together? What passive pickups would you recommend for Hard Rock/Classic Metal? Should I have covers on the pups or do you think zebras or something would look nicer?

Thankyou for your help! All comments will be massively appreciated and replied to if needs be. As I said I'll post a pic in the comments,

Harley
#3
Quote by Bixter
Hi everyone!

I picked up a Gibson Les Paul Studio (2014 Anniversary Model) a few months back and I'm thinking of making some aesthetic changes and possibly a pickup change. It came with a kind of aged beige pickguard/pickup surrounds and while i think it looks alright I just dont particularly like the colouring. The guitar itself is in Manhattan Midnight; a kind of dark blue - I'll post a pic in the comments. I already changed the tone/volume pots from the black speed knobs that gibson fit to classic gold ones.

Now I know its all personal opinion, but I'd like to hear other peoples suggestions. I know this guitar doesn't have the best finish in the world, but for me as a guitarist whos only been playing for 2 years I thought a studio was the best option for me.

I've also considered changing the pickups in the guitar. Again the stock pickups are alright in this, they do everything pretty good, however now I've started to get my own playing style I'd like something a little more specialised. What pickups would you guys recommend for Hard Rock and some metal, that also have nice cleans? I play a lot of Gun'n'roses and Metallica. I do want passive pups though, I feel like installing actives - EMG's etc - would ruin it.

TL;DR - I have a Manhattan Midnight Gibson Les Paul studio that I want to customise. What colour plastic do you think look best? Think I should remove the pickguard all together? What passive pickups would you recommend for Hard Rock/Classic Metal? Should I have covers on the pups or do you think zebras or something would look nicer?

Thankyou for your help! All comments will be massively appreciated and replied to if needs be. As I said I'll post a pic in the comments,

Harley



Why would you change them then? Really the only point of changing them out is if you actually don't like the sound they produce. There's absolutely nothing wrong with the stock pickups in your guitar and I would suggest you actually find something that you 100 percent know needs to be replaced before dropping cash on new pups.


Covers are up to you.
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#4
Quote by H4T3BR33D3R
Why would you change them then? Really the only point of changing them out is if you actually don't like the sound they produce. There's absolutely nothing wrong with the stock pickups in your guitar and I would suggest you actually find something that you 100 percent know needs to be replaced before dropping cash on new pups.


Covers are up to you.

I like them, but i feel like they're just alright, like they will do. I was just wondering if there was something that would better specialise in the style of music I play. I know little about pickups, but I have a new amp arriving soon (my first tube) so I'll see how they sound with that, thanks anyway for your advice.
#5
What's your amp?

A pickup change won't improve anything if your amp sucks.
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Reeeeeeeeeeeeeeee
#6
Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
What's your amp?

A pickup change won't improve anything if your amp sucks.

Jet City JCA50h, doesn't suck best I can afford anyways
Gibson Les Paul Studio 2014
Epiphone SG Goth Edition
Fender MIM Stratocaster 2013
Fender CD-100 12 String

Boss MT-2
Zakk Wylde CryBaby Wah

Jet City JCA50h + 2x12 Cab
Roland Cube 40xl
#7
The 490 pickups are pretty punchy and usually solid rock machines. What aren't they doing?
Harmony: Stratocaster
Alvarez: F-200
Schecter: Omen 6
Fender: BXR-60
Dean: Metalman Z Bass (Betty)
Egnator: Tweaker 15
Pearl: Maximum
ESP/LTD: EXP-300
Custom: Harley Quinn Bass
Custom: TK-421 Explorer
A steadily growing supply of pedals
#8
color honestly I'd let you decide. If its a dark blue black surrounds or metal surrounds in gold , nickel or black (ebay).

The gibson tuners are junk. Schaller, gotoh, sperzel, grovers, lots of good options just make sure to get the right kind. 18:1 gear ratio is what to shoot for.

a good amp goes a long way but for the first few years playing go digital. It'll save you money and you'll have a lot of options to see what works best for you and doesn't such as a used line 6 pod X3 or higher.

I hate talking about pickups because there's many ways to alter a guitars tone without changing pickups but what the hell here's some ideas.

pickup ideas
Slash uses Alnico Pro II pickups a signature set. BUT two cons to them
#1 they cannot do custom wiring mods. Coiltaps and so forth
#2 slashes amp does all the work. They are weak in output

Perhaps the Custom / jazz set. The custom I really like the sound of and I'm not a van halen fan other than 2 to 5 songs. It was designed for Eddie Van Halen around the first record so very high in output to get the guns and roses tone but it's not a signature pickup because Eddie got pissed at seymour ducan (yeah he's real like santa clause lmao) said NO YOU CAN'T SELL IT AS A SIGNATURE PICKUP. So it's affordable, aggressive when you want it to be and it's a 4 wire pickup. The alnico V (5) version of it exists if you want a more well rounded tone. Why should the amp do all the work.

the jazz pickup has a lot of treble to it and in a parallel coiltap it sounds great. A bit more treble to it but its worth the effort.

I'd honestly avoid EMG pickups like the plague. They aren't as great as people say they are. You can easily swap them out though. But if I was to recommend any EMG pickups it would be the 57/66 set as everyone endorsed seems to jump ship and have them in their guitars from Jeff Loomis to Devin Townsend or Andy James. Not huge names but they don't have the popularity to have their own signature pickups.

if not the seymour duncan naguzel and pegasus or sentient and pegasus set I forget what seymour duncan is using. A dimarzio X2N (bridge) and d-activator (neck) , the seymour duncan full shred (bridge) and 59. The Dimarzio super distortion (bridge) or if you go active the seymour duncan blackout metal set (it has a boost to make the pickups go super hot) in black metal , chrome or gold. I tell guys listen to the guitar and see what it's missing. In most cases you can get practically any tone out of an amp and a few pedals.

other than that and a good fret levelling as Gibson fret leveling is atrocious which I mention a lot.. my out of the box recommendation is a Kahler stud mounted tremolo to make the guitar your own it's a tremolo system designed for les pauls to make the strings go up and down like a floyd rose without cutting any wood. You can buy matching guitar pickup covers as well. Copper or alumium foil shielding inside the guitar is a great investment.

besides that try some other tunings like Slash likes Eb (E flat) and he's a big fan of the ernie ball power slinky or cobalt strings. Me personally I'd recommend Dunlop heavy cores for a heavier tone. But at the end of the day pickup height matters big time. the closer the pickups are to the strings the heavier the tone.
Last edited by Tallwood13 at Dec 4, 2014,
#9
Quote by Tallwood13
color honestly I'd let you decide. If its a dark blue black surrounds or metal surrounds in gold , nickel or black (ebay).

The gibson tuners are junk. Schaller, gotoh, sperzel, grovers, lots of good options just make sure to get the right kind. 18:1 gear ratio is what to shoot for.

a good amp goes a long way but for the first few years playing go digital. It'll save you money and you'll have a lot of options to see what works best for you and doesn't such as a used line 6 pod X3 or higher.

I hate talking about pickups because there's many ways to alter a guitars tone without changing pickups but what the hell here's some ideas.

pickup ideas
Slash uses Alnico Pro II pickups a signature set. BUT two cons to them
#1 they cannot do custom wiring mods. Coiltaps and so forth
#2 slashes amp does all the work. They are weak in output

Perhaps the Custom / jazz set. The custom I really like the sound of and I'm not a van halen fan other than 2 to 5 songs. It was designed for Eddie Van Halen around the first record so very high in output to get the guns and roses tone but it's not a signature pickup because Eddie got pissed when Eddie said NO YOU CAN'T SELL IT AS A SIGNATURE PICKUP. So it's affordable, aggressive when you want it to be and it's a 4 wire pickup. The alnico V (5) version of it exists if you want a more well rounded tone. Why should the amp do all the work.

the jazz pickup has a lot of treble to it and in a parallel coiltap it sounds great. A bit more treble to it but its worth the effort.

I'd honestly avoid EMG pickups like the plague. They aren't as great as people say they are. You can easily swap them out though. But if I was to recommend any EMG pickups it would be the 57/66 set as everyone endorsed seems to jump ship and have them in their guitars from Jeff Loomis to Devin Townsend or Andy James. Not huge names but they don't have the popularity to have their own signature pickups.

if not the seymour duncan naguzel and pegasus or sentient and pegasus set I forget what seymour duncan is using. A dimarzio X2N (bridge) and d-activator (neck) , the seymour duncan full shred (bridge) and 59. The Dimarzio super distortion (bridge) or if you go active the seymour duncan blackout metal set (it has a boost to make the pickups go super hot) in black metal , chrome or gold. I tell guys listen to the guitar and see what it's missing. In most cases you can get practically any tone out of an amp and a few pedals.

other than that and a good fret levelling as Gibson fret leveling is atrocious which I mention a lot.. my out of the box recommendation is a Kahler stud mounted tremolo to make the guitar your own it's a tremolo system designed for les pauls to make the strings go up and down like a floyd rose without cutting any wood. You can buy matching guitar pickup covers as well. Copper or alumium foil shielding inside the guitar is a great investment.

besides that try some other tunings like Slash likes Eb (E flat) and he's a big fan of the ernie ball power slinky or cobalt strings. Me personally I'd recommend Dunlop heavy cores for a heavier tone. But at the end of the day pickup height matters big time. the closer the pickups are to the strings the heavier the tone.


Not for a while. Pretty sure those tulips rock an 18:1 now as well unless you buy a historic. Never had problems with Grovers either.


You've owned many of them then? That's a super general statement. Which models would you say to avoid then? Personally I've used 81s, 85s and 60s and I don't think they sound awful. This is coming from a guy that uses PAFs and a Fender amp too.


How many new Gibsons are you playing? Just curious.
Quote by zgr0826
My culture is worthless and absolutely inferior to the almighty Leaf.


Quote by JustRooster
I incurred the wrath of the Association of White Knights. Specifically the Parent's Basement branch of service.