Price paid: $ 94
Purchased from: Union Music
Sound — 6
I use this guitar with a Valveking 212 and in my Kramer Striker 300ST (500K pots). I bought the pickup to replace the old Kramer bridge pickup. The Dimebucker is has a very high output, making it suitable for most eras of metal. It is naturally bass heavy, so in the distance between barely touching the strings and flush with the pickup slot, I had to set it more than halfway down. Even then, I have to set the bass and resonance pretty low on the lead channel. Setting the pickup down makes it quite trebly too, which bugs me on the both clean and lead channels (I have both set around 5-6). Overall the cleans are decent for a high output pup, but I use it in the 2nd position of my Striker with the Area 61 in the middle (this pup is set near the strings) to warm the highs. Lastly, this pickup really doesn't have much of a midrange. Since I play a lot of Iron Maiden I have to crank the mids to 10. However, the lack of midrange doesn't affect thrash/other scooped tones.
Reliability & Durability — 10
This is a pickup. I honestly do not know how one would possibly cause it to stop working, so this section is a bit/very irrelevant for pickups. I have owned the Dimebucker for about three years now, and it does not show any sign of breaking down. I assume the pickup will work for a long time as long as it is not smashed nor placed in water/similar fluids. It can be depended on and used in gigs without needing a backup. Do not do anything that could harm the pickup (i.e. putting it in water or applying traumatic force)
Overall Impression — 6
I really did not know much about pickups when I bought the dimebucker; I bought it when I was just beginning and it just sounded like something I needed. I wish I knew it was so bass heavy, even in my alder (I think) Striker with 500K pots. It's important to note this pup is designed for mahogany, so I imagine there's even more unnecessary low end, but I assume it isn't as shrilly on the treble detail in Mahogany. I also wish I knew about the rather flat midrange response, because '80s metal requires you to turn the mids full. Depending on the amp, that may not be enough. I would not buy this pickup again because of the overly emphasized bass and near lack of midrange detail. The only thing I really like about the pickup are the great pinch harmonics I can get.