#1
I'm looking to get some new humbuckers for my PRS SE Custom, and I'm looking for a nice high gain sound like that of Daron Malakian from System Of A Down, around the Toxicity era. I was told that some PAF style pickups would help out with this. I've only had experience with my pickups and want to learn more about PAF style pickups. What are some basic sound characteristics? What specific pickups should I get (I'm looking at getting both bridge and neck pickups)? Oh, and I'm not looking for very high-output pickups, medium output will do. Oh, and I'll be running it through a Bugera 333XL 212. Thanks.
-Paul Reed Smith SE Custom
-Bugera 333XL 212
#2
Well PAF refers to the Patent Applied For pickups that came out in old Gibsons (not sure of year, thinking late 50's). They have a mellow, rich vintage sound, good lows and mids with smooth highs. Seymour Duncan makes a humbucker called the '59 that sounds very much like a PAF. Beware that these are not high output pickups at all, not really sure you'd even call them medium output. They are very mellow. If you need to step up the output, try one of SD's Alnico II (think Slash) or Pearly Gates.
#3
Quote by SZ320man
Well PAF refers to the Patent Applied For pickups that came out in old Gibsons (not sure of year, thinking late 50's). They have a mellow, rich vintage sound, good lows and mids with smooth highs. Seymour Duncan makes a humbucker called the '59 that sounds very much like a PAF. Beware that these are not high output pickups at all, not really sure you'd even call them medium output. They are very mellow. If you need to step up the output, try one of SD's Alnico II (think Slash) or Pearly Gates.

Well I just want to avoid high output because to me it sounds like it loses articulation. So I'll look at the SD's. Oh, I saw some Dimarzio PAFs, how are they?
-Paul Reed Smith SE Custom
-Bugera 333XL 212
#4
I've never played with them, but jammed with a guy who had them, and they sounded great. Of course this dude was an unbelievable guitarist, so it may have just been him. Either way they don't suck, and if they say PAF, they're probably in the neighborhood of what you're looking for.
#5
Alnico Pro II's are lower output thatn your typical PAF type.

TS, the stock pickups are probably already kind of PAF-fy soundwise.
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#6
^Agreed, if you aren't satisfied with the pups in it, then you probably want to look for something that isn't a PAF. When I think PAF I think EVH, billy gibbons, and jimmy paige. I definitely don't think SOAD.
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#7
Daron uses Burstbuckers in (at the very least) his Gibsons, if not his other guitars. And aren't the Burstbuckers just a slighted beefed up PAF style pickup? However, Daron only used those on their last two albums, during Toxicity I believe he used Duncan Distortion pickups.
#8
Yeah, Billy Gibbons, early Jimmy Page, EVH, early Eric Clapton, etc. etc. all PAF users. Fat warm woody tone is what I guess most would describe it, they sound really great, they really let the tone of the guitar shine through. Medium output, though some like them overwound for more output.

Here is what a PAF sounds like to me

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V8kfI8H-XOg
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EA0LtElaUIo&NR=1 (check out the lead tone at the end of this one to see what I mean by "woody" tone)

(those are the WCR Bet set, which you should definitely take a look at if you have the cash, but as always, the original JTM45 and matching cab are also big contributors to the tone, as is the guitar itself, but that is imo, about as perfect as tone can get)

There are a lot of good PAF-type pickups out there, WB, WCR, High Order, Bare knuckle. Seymour Duncan Seth Lovers and antiquities are passable PAF type pickups as well. The '59 sounds pretty good too, but is not really that PAF-ish. It's a little bit scooped sounding to my ears.
Last edited by al112987 at Oct 20, 2008,
#9
The Dimarzio PAF Pros are AWSOME pickups i have them on my Strat and my Schecter C1. they sound unbeliveable. its a very good Neck pickup, but can be used in the bridge spot but still sounds fantastic. its a Meduim power humbucker. if i were you i would put a Dimarzio PAF pro in the neck and Dimarzio Fred in the Bridge.


also try out Rockfield pickups. the Turbo and mafia pickups and great. i have a Turbo in my Lotus les paul and a mafia on it. they shred. they are bit higher output then the PAF Pro. Rockfield pickups are designed around the PAF pickup
'92 Mesa Dual Rectifier Blackface
Peavey 5150 II half stack
'94 Mesa Dual Rect.
Bugera 6262-212
'93 Custom Fender Strat
Schecter C1 custom
Fender FMT Telecaster
Mosrite JR Model
MXR Smart Gate


Member of the Bugera Users Militia
#10
'92 Mesa Dual Rectifier Blackface
Peavey 5150 II half stack
'94 Mesa Dual Rect.
Bugera 6262-212
'93 Custom Fender Strat
Schecter C1 custom
Fender FMT Telecaster
Mosrite JR Model
MXR Smart Gate


Member of the Bugera Users Militia
#11
Quote by AndyRevenge

Can I get a second opinion on this? Also, if PAFs aren't what I want, what is it that would befit the tone I am looking for?
-Paul Reed Smith SE Custom
-Bugera 333XL 212
#12
a set of Seymour duncans would do the trick as well. a '59 in the neck and a JB in the bridge will do wonders man. i have them in my Schecter C1 Blackjack
'92 Mesa Dual Rectifier Blackface
Peavey 5150 II half stack
'94 Mesa Dual Rect.
Bugera 6262-212
'93 Custom Fender Strat
Schecter C1 custom
Fender FMT Telecaster
Mosrite JR Model
MXR Smart Gate


Member of the Bugera Users Militia