It's another one of those threads!

So I have an Epiphone ES339, which is a nice guitar to play, but I've never really cared for the sound of the pickups. For me, they're a little muddy with dirt and in general just a little 'flat' and dull sounding. I might have sold the guitar, but since it's a pretty cheap instrument to begin with, I can't imagine I'll get much for it.

So, could anyone suggest some nice new pickups to throw in it? I'm not looking for super high-end pickups, like BKP, that will be worth as much as the guitar. Just a nice set of versatile humbuckers. I play just about every style of music except country. So something than can do nice cleans, dirty blues, and some 'heavy' music as well. I don't like super high output pickups.

I was thinking perhaps the SD vintage blues set. Thoughts?
for a second I thought you were going to say you wanted to put BKP in a cheap guitar but I kept reading haha..

anyways.. higher output would help. Being a Devin Townsend fan perhaps the EMG 57/66 set he's using now in his guitars which is expensive but I find most (but not all) active pickups to be really sterile. I have raved about the seymour duncan blackouts on here a lot though.

My advice is simple as it's impossible for forum posters to play your guitar and give opinions. You've got an idea of output and know what the guitar is missing so I'd consult the tone charts of Seymour duncan or Dimarzio. No sense in rewiring an ES guitar with 4 potentiometers. Better to just swap the 2 pickups. The 59 when it is in parallel is a really nice clean tone I had on my LTD MH1000 , not sure if the pickup was by itself on the super 5 way switch as I didn't take the guitar apart, the accompanying pickup with it was a JB which is a very hot pickup that you're not going to like.

the 59 or jazz in the neck (the jazz has more highs)
the bridge this is a good question. One of my friends on here beyond octaves got the custom/59 pickup and loved it and he is a blues player too.

but like before EQ charts help, as do demos on youtube. With youtube make sure they use the same guitars. The only guy I have respect for doing youtube demos of comparing pickups is Ola Englund, he's a bit heavy for some peoples taste but totally professional.

before you drop 200$ or so on pickups try some other string kinds though. Steel does this for you, titanium that and so forth. That and the right picks help. If you need a string supplier try stringsandbeyond.com I use them all the time and they love international sales.
Last edited by Tallwood13 at Jan 23, 2015,