L-250 review by Bill Lawrence

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  • Sound: 10
  • Reliability & Durability: 10
  • Overall Impression: 10
  • Reviewer's score: 10 Gem
  • Users' score: 9.3 (3 votes)
Bill Lawrence: L-250

Purchased from: Sound Stage

Sound — 10
I bought these (four of them) in 1983, before the original owner/maker sold his company back in the 1980's. The others (three) I got from Stewart MacDonald in 1987-1990. The L-250 doesn't (like other BL pickups) add fake/imposing tones, but rather, they actually bring out the nature of the guitars wood tones from the string dynamics, the bridge used, the nut used, the pots, caps used in the guitars circuits. I've used them in all positions on traditional Strats to S,S,H and H,S,H configured '80s style Super Strats with many varying great results. On a traditional Strat's bridge position it adds more bass and mid response with out being muddy or too booming. But on the Super Strat's Mid/Neck position, you can get an semi-acoustical quality with the volume knob turned down to 5 to 6 on a clean channel. Distorted, they react perfectly to your fingering/picking dynamics and the Overdrive/Distortions levels you are feeding them. The older models are superior in my opinion (pre 1985) (I rate them a 10 and half), the later ones didn't have as much "Mojo." Out of the 3 later L-250's I bought from Stew-Mac, only one was as good (a 10) as the pre 1984 one, the second not as dynamic (a 7) and the third one was totally lacking to my ears (a 5). The older BL L-250's are great when picking like Yngwie and are beautiful when playing Rhoads/Holdsworth type legato lines.

Reliability & Durability — 10
I used stainless steel picks and they've held up great over the years and they aged so gracefully over the years. They don't need to be wax potted and they still don't give any 60 cycle hum. They've held their magnetism well, still sustain great and the tone has seemed to have gotten more dynamic/sensitive. These pickups are great for recording and are even better when playing live on the stage. Strange thing is, many of the ohms ratings were inconsistent, some were rated on my meter as being from 11.97k ohms to 13.06k ohm. To a staggering 14.61k ohms. The newer ones were more consistent in the K ohms department, than the earlier versions.

Overall Impression — 10
Playing since 1978, both original/cover bands, used just about every amp, pickups, cables, various guitars over the years, teaching since 1986, toured 6 Canadian provinces and all lower 48 American states. I play blues, 1980's metal, neo-classical metal, thrash, speed metal, classic rock ('60's, '70s, '80s) and guitar oriented Instrumental music. This pickup is a classic, especially the ones made between it's introduction in the mid 1970's to 1983. I love how these pickups bring out what's in the guitar while not adding fake dynamics or how the magnetic structure doesn't interfere with the strings vibration, thus preserving the natural sustain.

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