Poll: Should I switch my pickups?
Poll Options
View poll results: Should I switch my pickups?
Keep Both Pickups
5 42%
Switch Bridge Pickup
3 25%
Switch Both Pickups
4 33%
Voters: 12.
#1
I am currently using a PRS Custom 24 with the stock pickups (59/09s). They sound very warm and nice when I am playing clean tones, but most of the time they sound horrible when I am playing distorted rhythm tones. I was wondering if it would be worth it to only change the bridge pickup to something more practical and still keep the neck pickup for clean tones. What do you guys think?
#2
What amp are you using?

What is it that you don't like about the higher gain tones? Be specific.
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#3
PRS have a very distinct tone, IMO very jazzy and crisp. While I love it for prog metal, I can see why you wouldn't like it for conventional metal where you want a lot of body and beefiness. I know a lot of guys that use PRS's (Karnivool comes to mind) that pop a Duncan JB in the bridge. Gives you beef for distortion, and the neck will give you your sparkly cleans. That's just one man's opinion though, you really ought to listen to different pickups, as well as how they work with your genre and amp.
#4
If you want some dank humbuckers look up Tom Anderson pickups. They're amazing. But I don't think they come with the cover plate.

Other than that if you wanna beef up, SH-4/SH-6 are a pretty common choice. SH4 has a cover plate if you're worried about that.

Post what you run your guitar through or maybe a soundcloud recording and a comparison of what you want to sound like.
#5
Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
What amp are you using?

What is it that you don't like about the higher gain tones? Be specific.


Agreed. And I'm not gonna recommend what I'd consider switching to first because I might get shot at for considering putting those into a PRS.
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#6
When I use hi-gain tones it always sounds very muddy. Even if I replace my strings.

I'm using BIAS and BIAS FX for amp modeling (usually I just play through headphones - these are definitely not what it makes it sound bad). When I practice cleans I use a Hartke A35 bass amp.

I do play prog metal, and that is why I enjoy the warm tones when I'm playing clean.

Thanks for the suggestions of pickups, I'll check them out.
#7
Quote by martin.roussev
When I use hi-gain tones it always sounds very muddy. Even if I replace my strings.

I'm using BIAS and BIAS FX for amp modeling (usually I just play through headphones - these are definitely not what it makes it sound bad). When I practice cleans I use a Hartke A35 bass amp.


Okay, since we've asked you about your "amp," we now need to ask you about your headphones as well. These can make a much larger difference than any set of pickups.

Just to confirm, we're talking a full-bore Custom 24 and not the SE Custom 24, right?

Before you swap your pickups, I'd suggest that you haul your guitar into a music store, plug it into some really good amps (let's put that at, very arbitrarily, an amp with a price tag of well over $600) and tell us what you find.
#8
Quote by dspellman
Okay, since we've asked you about your "amp," we now need to ask you about your headphones as well. These can make a much larger difference than any set of pickups.

Just to confirm, we're talking a full-bore Custom 24 and not the SE Custom 24, right?

Before you swap your pickups, I'd suggest that you haul your guitar into a music store, plug it into some really good amps (let's put that at, very arbitrarily, an amp with a price tag of well over $600) and tell us what you find.


Yes. I am using the Custom 24 NOT the SE version. When I am using headphones I use sennheiser HD 449s and when I am using speakers I use BOSE.

It is a good idea to take my guitar to a store; i'll definitely do that sometime.
#9
Quote by martin.roussev
When I use hi-gain tones it always sounds very muddy. Even if I replace my strings.

I'm using BIAS and BIAS FX for amp modeling (usually I just play through headphones - these are definitely not what it makes it sound bad). When I practice cleans I use a Hartke A35 bass amp.

I do play prog metal, and that is why I enjoy the warm tones when I'm playing clean.

Thanks for the suggestions of pickups, I'll check them out.


modeling software often can't really tell the difference with pickups. amp models are desinged to give you an idealized version of what the amp sounds like. this often doesn't take in to account the subtlties of different pickups. through my POD both of my strats sound pretty much the same despite having very diffeent pups. through my amsp they sound different at tha same settings. you may want to look at the setting you use on your amp models as that may be the actual culprit in this.
#10
Quote by martin.roussev
When I use hi-gain tones it always sounds very muddy. Even if I replace my strings.

I'm using BIAS and BIAS FX for amp modeling (usually I just play through headphones - these are definitely not what it makes it sound bad). When I practice cleans I use a Hartke A35 bass amp.

I do play prog metal, and that is why I enjoy the warm tones when I'm playing clean.

Thanks for the suggestions of pickups, I'll check them out.



It wouldn't be bad idea to take out your bridge pickup right now because you'll do it later anyway, but more than anything BIAS doesn't exactly have the sickest tone possible. So in that case it's really up to you.

There really will be a difference when you take them out EVEN coming out of Bias FX, but I recommend you try to get some other type of amplifier instead or at least, try your guitar through a real amplifier and see the results.
#11
Quote by martin.roussev
Yes. I am using the Custom 24 NOT the SE version. When I am using headphones I use sennheiser HD 449s and when I am using speakers I use BOSE.

It is a good idea to take my guitar to a store; i'll definitely do that sometime.


All good. Given, then, the quality of everything surrounding the guitar, why are you using app software on a phone (or are you using the computer variant)?
#12
Quote by dspellman
All good. Given, then, the quality of everything surrounding the guitar, why are you using app software on a phone (or are you using the computer variant)?


I'm using the computer variant. At the moment I can't really afford to get a high quality head and cab.
#13
Have you tried any other computer modeling programs? There are some free/cheap ones out there. I personally like Guitar Rig Pro 4. Maybe check out another to make sure it's not the app.
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#14
Quote by JustRooster
Have you tried any other computer modeling programs? There are some free/cheap ones out there. I personally like Guitar Rig Pro 4. Maybe check out another to make sure it's not the app.


I tried using Guitar Rig 5 once but I don't really like it. :P
#15
I think the stock prs pickups are pretty terrible. So if you want something high gain I'd grab another set and try them out.
Prs se Holcomb is the answer
#16
Quote by martin.roussev
I tried using Guitar Rig 5 once but I don't really like it. :P



Gotcha, in that case, new pickups could be the solution. I recently just dropped a set of Seymour Duncans in my ESP. The Sentinel and the Pegasus. I play mostly post rock, but a lot on the proggier end, like some older Mastodon. If you need good string separation, the Pegasus is great. If you want a wall of sound, the Nazgul is great.
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#17
Quote by JustRooster
Gotcha, in that case, new pickups could be the solution. I recently just dropped a set of Seymour Duncans in my ESP. The Sentinel and the Pegasus. I play mostly post rock, but a lot on the proggier end, like some older Mastodon. If you need good string separation, the Pegasus is great. If you want a wall of sound, the Nazgul is great.


So do you think Pegasus or Sentient would be more ideal for tapping? I do a lot of Pomegranate Tiger and AAL-style tapping.
Last edited by martin.roussev at Sep 13, 2015,
#18
The Pegasus would, it was made with the idea of clear, distinct note separation. The Sentient is more of a high-gain neck match for soloing.
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#19
Quote by JustRooster
The Pegasus would, it was made with the idea of clear, distinct note separation. The Sentient is more of a high-gain neck match for soloing.


Ok. Thanks for the explantion!
#20
Quote by martin.roussev
So do you think Pegasus or Sentient would be more ideal for tapping? I do a lot of Pomegranate Tiger and AAL-style tapping.


I'd definitely try out the pegasus sentient or nazgul or even the blackwinters.
Prs se Holcomb is the answer
#21
A suggestion is the Seymour Duncan Custom or Custom 5 (the Custom 5 has less mids) for the bridge, and possibly a Jazz for the neck position. It is clean and clear, yet sounds great clean or with a lot of gain. You will have a versatile guitar ready for anything.
Dave @ Seymour Duncan
#22
Well I was using a set of Seymour Duncan 59 in the neck and a Seymour Duncan Custom SH-11 in the bridge in a Schecter C-1 Custom. I had HEARD that the Custom wouldn't be "heavy" enough for my tastes but it handled the gain I was putting it through VERY well. Had a very percussive quality to it that I loved when I was palm muting, as well as had a solidly thick tone to it while playing leads in the middle of the neck. It was also the most versatile feeling of the 3 I played today, possibly due to the setup being coil tapped, but also I just felt like you could get a smoother, more "delicate" clean out of it with a nice brightness without it being too sharp or jangly. I was playing through a Blackstar HT-60 and compared it to stock PRS Tremonti SE pickups (I liked the look of the guitar, but it couldn't push the amp and it just didn't handle what I was trying to play). And I finished with a Jackson DK2M with Seymour Duncan JB TB4 in the Bridge and a Jazz SH2N in the neck. It played great, but I felt like it was a little "weaker" than the Schecter C-1 Custom's tone while distorted. So I recommend trying the Seymour Duncan 59 in the neck and a Seymour Duncan Custom SH-11 in the bridge setup.

EDIT: I forgot the setup on the Jackson was a BIT off and so the trem was being pulled back a bit. So feel free to disregard the statements about the Jackson.
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Yes, and people still got polio and you had to crank your car up by hand and put whale oil in the lamps every night.

Things are better now.


Quote by dannyalcatraz
Style is in the hands. Taste is in the hands. But tone? Tone is in the gear.
Last edited by GraceByDeath at Sep 19, 2015,
#23
I like the pickups quite a lot, they sound better than anything else i have had anyways (always been used to crappy ibanez pickups).
They are very clear and have a nice midrange roar to them.
BUT, the neck pup can get somewhat muddy and the bridge pup can be too harsh/thin. So i will be switching mines out.