Price paid: $ 75
Purchased from: ebay
Sound — 9
The Custom 5 is a pickup for those who like the basic sound of the "JB" but want it to have more low-end power. Best in the bridge position, this pickup has the attack of the well-loved "JB" humbucker but it does give more bass response and sounds more modern as opposed to the sizzling mids of the aforementioned JB. Great for hard rock and some metal, and has been a great addition to both my old Les Paul and my old Kramer Pacer Imperial.
Overall Impression — 10
I believe this pickup was a very worthy addition to the Duncan lineup. The JB is a legendary humbucker that has tons of harmonics and is a benchmark in terms of tone, but the Custom 5 gives the option of having almost all the same qualities in a bridge pickup that hits harder in the low frequencies...and actually cleans up decently. An excellent pickup for most rock/metal uses!
Reliability & Durability — 10
I've used Duncans for over 20 years, and I've yet to actually kill one. I've swapped 'em out plenty of times because I love playing with different tones in my guitars, but I've never had a defective unit yet. Neither Custom 5 has given me any trouble, and I've had them both for a couple of years now.