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  1. #1
    Eruption bjk's Avatar
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    12.17.17 @ 03:13 PM
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    Default direct mounted pickup vs. pickguard mounted

    How much different would the same pickup sound if it were direct mounted rather than attached to the pickguard? I'm asking because I've got a Fender Strat Floyd Rose model with a humbucker in the bridge position and it the humbucker sounds really weak and twangy, almost like a single coil. It's probably just a shit pickup and I can replace it. But on my other guitars (PV Wolfgangs, an OLP) have a much fatter sound and their p/u's are direct mounted. The Strat is a solid guitar and I'm planning to replace the pickup with a Seymour Duncan or something. I'm just hoping this fixes it. But I don't think I can direct mount it because the pickup cavity is the "swimming pool" type. Or does it even matter???

  2. #2
    Emperor of VHLinks.com Brett's Avatar
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    12.17.17 @ 06:56 PM
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    Default

    You know, for the most part it doesn't make any difference in the sound at all if it's mounted directly or not. Especially if you have to shim it, which everyone almost always has to, because then you're not really direct-mounting it anyway. I just think it looks a lot cooler than having a pickup ring. But if you have a Strat pickguard it obviously won't look any different if you direct mount it.

    I would just get a better humbucker, check that everything is wired correctly and that the pickup isn't too far from the strings. A lot of times that's the problem. If you're going to direct mount it, you will need a shim to get it to the proper height. But seriously it's not going to make the kind of difference you expect. A sucky pickup direct mounted will still sound shitty.
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  3. #3
    Sinner's Swing!
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    12.17.17 @ 02:50 PM
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    Default

    We could practically close this thread now, Brett just summed-up everything perfectly.

    As a side note, I will add that people would be very surprised if they saw how *little* of their pickup is actually directly touching their guitar. With my EBMMs, it's only the flats of the pickup "legs" that are screwed into the wood. There is actually space beneath the pickup and the wood.

    It comes down to cosmetic preferences.

  4. #4
    Emperor of VHLinks.com Brett's Avatar
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    12.17.17 @ 06:56 PM
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    Default

    I am sure some will argue it changes the sound, but it doesn't. With that said, whenever I can I direct mount them though, as I love that look without the ring.
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  5. #5
    Eruption bjk's Avatar
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    12.17.17 @ 03:13 PM
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    Default

    Cool, that's what I was hoping to hear. I've adjusted the height and checked the wiring and it all seems fine. Just a crummy pickup. Now the only question is: what kind of pickup? (Think GNR, Motley, VH, warm sound, plenty of balls but not too "metal" sounding.) Any suggestions?

  6. #6
    Emperor of VHLinks.com Brett's Avatar
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    12.17.17 @ 06:56 PM
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    Default

    How much do you want to spend?

    If you're looking $70-$75 a Seymour Duncan Custom Custom is nice. You can get a Duncan JB, which is nice too. If you want a little more balls you can a Duncan Custom which I have in most of my guitars.

    If you want hand-wound stuff, like the Duncan EVH '78 or what I have in a guitar a Bareknuckle VH II, you're going to pay $140+.

    I've never been a DiMarzio fan but I know lots of guys on here are.
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  7. #7
    Baluchitherium
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    04.02.15 @ 07:26 AM
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    Default

    +1 for the bareknuckle vhII, quite simply awsome, but at a price
    also worth a try is the seymor duncan pearly gates....i have those in a couple of my guitars and absolutley love them to bits...its basicaly just a very slightly overwound paf. also have a look at gibsons burstbucker series, i have a burstbucker III in my mongrel strat and it sounds superb, so good infact i dont use the other 2 pups....just my 2 cents, i'm sure a million people have a million and two suggestions....just go with your ears dude, play a few guitars at a store and find out what they're fitted with.
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  8. #8
    Good Enough nobozos's Avatar
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    12.17.17 @ 07:24 AM
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    Default

    I've tried quite a few pickups in different guitars, and my opinion is that you can't go wrong with a Seymour Duncan JB. It is the "tastes like chicken" of guitar pickups. No matter who's tone you like, VH, Vai, Slash, when you use a JB, you are pretty well happy.

    Other pickups that I have played, and can personnally vouch for are:

    -Seymour Duncan Custom 5
    -Dimarzio Evolution
    -Seymour Duncan Pearly Gates
    -Seymour Duncan Custom
    -Seymour Duncan Custom Custom (Currently in my #2 guitar)
    -And finally, and perhaps one of my all time favorites, the Dimarzio Steve's Special

    I had a Steve's Special in one of my Les Pauls, and that pickup is impressive. I would have to rate that pickup #3 in my all time top 5 pickups that I've ever had.

    If you want to play it safe, get a JB, but I would recommend a Steve's Special to anyone.
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  9. #9
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    11.17.15 @ 08:56 PM
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    Default

    Yep ... Brett nailed it IMO.

    If EVH mounted his pickups to Brillo Pads and said it gave him "great tone", I'm convinced others would follow.

 

 

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