#1
Hello all!

So I (finally!) secured a Dimarzio Virtual PAF bridge model, and put it in my PRS SE 245 (Custom), and I absolutely love the sound of it--and now I am faced with the choice of which neck model. I am considering the Bluesbucker (finding a Virtual PAF neck has been a pain, and the ones I find tend to sell pretty quickly, and besides I like the alleged P-90 flavor), but the vPAF bridge has an output of 230 mV and the Bluesbucker has an output of 224 mV. Is that enough of a difference that they can both be used, no problem, or would I have to lower the height of the Bluesbucker substantially? I am open to other pickups if this one does not work out, I just figured I'd do some research before I figured out what I should go for.

Thanks!
#2
That information isn't going to help you.
Consider this: Virtually every guitar sold prior to 1980 used the exact same pickup in both positions. At some point in the '80's, the manufacturers began to add a hotter pickup to the bridge position and aftermarket winders began calling it a matched set (so that they could sell a *pair* of aftermarket pickups rather than just one).

The neck position is naturally going to be louder than the same pickup in the bridge position (and that's not a bad thing, BTW). And one other factor: there's a lot more variation in the *actual* output of aftermarket pickups than you'd suspect.
#4
pretty much what dspellman said- it's close enough that it should be fine, but you'll likely have to lower it a bit if you want the outputs to match. but you'd likely have to do that even with a more "balanced" set anyway (at least in my experience).
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#5
The output match looks good - the very small difference is in the right direction.. I think it is common/normal practice to adjust height and tilt to fine tune both output and bass-treble balance, so I wouldn't worry about it within reasonable limits. FWIW, I play mostly using the neck pickup, so I set it first, then adjust the bridge pickup to match.
Last edited by Tony Done at Dec 9, 2016,
#6
Quote by Tony Done
The output match looks good - the very small difference is in the right direction.. I think it is common/normal practice to adjust height and tilt to fine tune both output and bass-treble balance, so I wouldn't worry about it within reasonable limits. FWIW, I play mostly using the neck pickup, so I set it first, then adjust the bridge pickup to match.


I use my bridge pickup for almost everything, as my neck pickup on that guitar is normally too muddy for me (it's probably about average, I just like my tone bright), if anything I mess with the tone control on the bridge pickup and get a satisfactory-ish result. I was drawn to that pickup because of its alleged P90-ness, but after looking up on the DiMarzio forum, it seems that it doesn't have that, it is just a good humbucker, so I'm open to other options besides that one.

*Note, the present neck pickup is the stock PRS SE Custom 245 pickup.
#7
The SD P-Rail is a very interesting pickup for neck positions. It has both a single (rail) coil and a p90 coil. There are actually three output levels available (SD lists one as a neck pickup and the other two as bridge options, but ignore that). The P-Rail works best with the extended switching required to select either coil and/or both in serial and parallel configurations.

Single coils excel as neck-position pickups, as do single-coil-size humbuckers and mini-humbuckers. The real clue to reducing muddiness is to reduce the the string length taken in by the magnetic flux and the distance between humbucker coils (phase issues, etc.). You can get adapters