#1
I recently bought a Charvel San Dimas Style HS HT. Its the humbucker single coil, hardtail version of the San Dimas. It is almost my perfect guitar. Its not to heavy. the neck is the most incredible neck I have ever played on, having locking tuners and being a hardtail it stays in tune all day. The reason I say it is almost my perfect guitar is the neck pickup. The reason I wanted the hum sc setup is because there are a few main tones I love. A really screaming rock/metal tone with the bridge pickup. This has that with the seymour duncan jb in the bridge. But what I also want is the really clear, bell like tone you get out of a strat single coil. This came with a seymour duncan stk-s6 in the neck. It sounds pretty good when you start to get som grit on there but when played clean it sounds kind of sterile and dark.

So what Im looking for is suggestions for a single coil that can get that prestine, bell like, twangy fender single coil tone, that still sounds good for driven leads, but most importantly will come close to matching the volume output of the JB. I know there will always be a difference in volume between a humbucker and single coil, it just want to get as close as I can get without it being to noticable. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
GEAR
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#2
perhaps the seymour duncan JB jr (neck) it's a 4 wire single coil that has almost all of the power and all of the humbucker variant of the JB and probably pairs nicely as a set. When in doubt you can coil split it or make it go parallel for extra sounds.

I did like the screaming little demon though which is another single coil variant of a humbucker. I sold one on ebay last week for around 80$ and someone grabbed it fast. In experience though the JB pairs well with the 59 so the "lil 59" perhaps as well

but consult the tone chart, resistance, the EQ the pickups and resonant peak are really important.
http://www.seymourduncan.com/comparetones

I am kind of curious what would be louder though a bare knuckle sinner single coil (21.5k) or a JB humbucker (15 or 16k)
Last edited by Tallwood13 at Jun 28, 2015,
#3
The JB Junior is a poor fit. It's not a single coil, doesn't split well to a clean single coil, and is not at all capable of the bell tones the OP asked for from a neck single. "Single coil size" is not the same as "single coil pickup" so I'm not sure what the nonsense was about the JB Jr or the Screamin Demon. They're both awful suggestions here. The little 59 is slightly less stupid but it's still not a single coil (nor sound like one) and it still doesn't split very well to pretend that it is. There are literally hundreds of great single coil pickups that could work here and you've suggested three pickups that don't do that sound at all.

Anyway, to answer the question:
I would suggest not worrying terribly much about the volume difference. The neck will naturally be louder, you can raise the pickup a tad, and you're probably going to want a bit of volume drop anyway if you're using the bridge for dirty and the neck for clean sounds. Plus, you can only wind a single coil so hot before it starts to sound weird clean, especially in the neck. So you might not need a really hot pickup like you think. The JB is a real gentleman and seems to play fair even with low-output strat pickups.

Personally, I use a JB with very low output strat singles and have no issues. I use SSL1s but have paired the JB with Fender Hot 50s, Lace Golds, Fender 57/62s, Texas Specials, etc., and I think it works fine with all of them. If you really want the lovely bell cleans from a neck single, I'd suggest one of the 50s voiced single coils. It's worth the minor volume difference to have that sound, and anything hotter usually doesn't sound quite right. Still, if you want a bit more of a match, you could probably use something like an SSL5, a DiMarzio Heavy Blues, or a Lace Hot Gold or Silver, which are all a bit hotter but still do a decent, warm stratty neck tone.
#4
Roc thank you very much for your reply and all the info. I was leaning towards the texas special. The only thing that worried me is I had a friends deluxe lonestar strat for a little while which had a pearly gates and 2 texas specials, and the volume difference between the pearly gates and the texas specials on that was pretty significant. Although I loved the tone of the texas specials which is why I was leaning in that direction. I dont know if there was something wrong with the pearly gates in that guitar though as it sounded extremely muddy. I don't have the money to experiment to much so I want to try to get it right on the first shot. One reason I want the volume to not be to much of a drop is I also do a fair bit of lead playing on the neck pickup.
GEAR
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Last edited by guitarguychris1 at Jun 29, 2015,
#5
Also what do you think of the Dimarzio Area 67? Ive heard that is a pretty versatile single coil that doe good chimey cleans and handles distortion well while also being hum canceling.
GEAR
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#6
The Area pickups are quite good. I think with any pickup that does the proper chimey strat neck sound you're going to have some volume difference against a JB. The 67 is a good compromise though between output and tone considerations.

It might be a good idea to buy or build a cheap clean boost pedal to help balance the pickups.
#7
Yeah i understand there is going to be a bit of compromise either way, that's why i am thinking either area 67 or heavy blues 2. Those are the 2 that seem to have the least compromise to tone or output. When I decide between the 2 and get one installed I'll let you know how it turns out. Thanks
GEAR
Godin Icon Type 2 Classic
Vox SDC 33
Mesa Boogie Express 5:50 2x12
Roland Cube 80XL
Boss Tuner
BBE Boosta Grande
Ibanez TS9 Tube Screamer
Amptweaker Tightmetal
ISP Decimator
Zoom G3
TC Electronic Flashback
Visual Sound H2O