ToneQuest; Pickup comparison in a Custom Shop Les Paul

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strategery
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Re: ToneQuest; Pickup comparison in a Custom Shop Les Paul

Post by strategery » Sat Mar 03, 2012 9:57 pm

I was going to mention string guage. ;)
Sometimes you can go to the next heavier string set and it can help.

Randy

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mdrs
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Re: ToneQuest; Pickup comparison in a Custom Shop Les Paul

Post by mdrs » Sat Mar 03, 2012 10:09 pm

I've got 10's on it. Not a bad idea to try out some 11's, which I like to use on a LP many times anyway.

I did speak with my "contact", and he's gonna raise hell with Gibby's Custom Shop, as it's been to long!! They said they'd send me some other rings, and claim that they sent them. But, Alex never got them, and I sure didn't either!! :shakesfist:

Now, I've spent a bunch of time listening to the audio clips again. I have particularly spent time comparing my two favorites; the originals, and the WCR's.

I've come to the conclusion that the originals are more powerful, and push the tone into higher gain. I feel that the WCR's are warmer, and I think that they are really closer to my ideal tone. They are not too far from the tone of the '59 ES-335 that I recently added to the herd.

So, for now, the WCR's are staying on!! :thumb: :thumb:

And, I'm going to start making noise at the Gibby CS until they get me a pickup ring that works!!!!
Don

"There once was a note, Pure and Easy. Playing so free, like a breath rippling by."
"The guitar is such a great friend... If you play guitar, you are already blessed."

http://www.soundclick.com/bands/pagemus ... dID=574296

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Re: ToneQuest; Pickup comparison in a Custom Shop Les Paul

Post by mdrs » Fri Mar 09, 2012 3:46 pm

In order to make it easier to listen to the various pu's, I thought I'd post links to all of them in this one spot;

Stock hand wound Gibson CS pickups; http://soundclick.com/share.cfm?id=10821175

PRS DGT pickups; http://soundclick.com/share.cfm?id=10835071

PRS 57/08 pickups; http://soundclick.com/share.cfm?id=10920022

WCR Fillmore set; http://soundclick.com/share.cfm?id=11139933
Don

"There once was a note, Pure and Easy. Playing so free, like a breath rippling by."
"The guitar is such a great friend... If you play guitar, you are already blessed."

http://www.soundclick.com/bands/pagemus ... dID=574296

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mdrs
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Re: ToneQuest; Pickup comparison in a Custom Shop Les Paul

Post by mdrs » Fri Mar 09, 2012 4:36 pm

I was thinking of throwing the Fralin "Pure PAF's" in it, but I just spent the past half hour playing with the WCR Fillmore Set in it, playing it through the Block Logo JTM 45, and made certain I had the amp set where I like it. At this point I am 100% happy with the bridge pu's tone. I just need the lower pick up ring so I can eliminate the "ice picky" noises on the high E, A, and G strings when they strike the pu ring. :shakesfist:

Now, the neck pu..........I really like the tone of the high E, B, and G strings. Single note leads sound great!! However the D, and especially the A and low E strings sound mushy and indistinct.

So, I lowered the neck pick up JUST ON THE BASS SIDE. And, THERE IT IS!!! PERFECT!! :rawk:

So, with the unanimous agreement of my sons and I, we all LOVE the Burst Brother's Les Paul with the WCR Fillmore Set in it.

Now, I'm gonna shut up and play my guitar!! :rawk:
Don

"There once was a note, Pure and Easy. Playing so free, like a breath rippling by."
"The guitar is such a great friend... If you play guitar, you are already blessed."

http://www.soundclick.com/bands/pagemus ... dID=574296

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strategery
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Re: ToneQuest; Pickup comparison in a Custom Shop Les Paul

Post by strategery » Sat Mar 10, 2012 9:30 am

You the man....enjoy! :rawk: :D

Randy

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Re: ToneQuest; Pickup comparison in a Custom Shop Les Paul

Post by mdrs » Sat Mar 10, 2012 10:31 am

LOL........thanks, Randy!!!! :wave:
Don

"There once was a note, Pure and Easy. Playing so free, like a breath rippling by."
"The guitar is such a great friend... If you play guitar, you are already blessed."

http://www.soundclick.com/bands/pagemus ... dID=574296

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Re: ToneQuest; Pickup comparison in a Custom Shop Les Paul

Post by Caevan O'Shite » Sun Mar 11, 2012 12:51 pm

I'll spend a good amount of time adjusting the heights of pickups, and that of their polepieces if they're adjustable, to find the best sound for a given guitar. I often like the sound of polepieces raised a tad under the wound/bass-strings with the pickup similarly lowered on the bass-side, with slightly low under the plain/treble-strings with the pickup raised a bit on the treble-side. Warmer, rounder, smoother high-strings, with defined, sparkling, twanging, piano-like harmonic-swirl on the low-strings.

Now, Don, I have to suggest that you try those DR Pure Blues, 10's or 11's, on this BB LP with the WCR Fillmore pickups; specifically the Pure Blues, NOT the Tight Fits or any of their other strings.

You will have to adjust the pickups and the polepieces for sure, both for the overall tone and for the string-to-string balance. But once you do, you WILL find yourself much further into that "warm and fuzzy" tone that you cite as your ideal and goal. Having pure/solid nickel winding on the wound-strings, they are MUCH more fitting for that than modern nickel-plated-steel strings. They have much more mids, low-mids, and punch; a subtly rolled-of high-treble while still having sparkle, shimmer and harmonic swirl; and a little less low-bass, though plenty ample in the low-end. PERFECT for Gibson-style humbucker or P-90 guitars, ESPECIALLY EXCELLENT for vintage-y Les Pauls. I'll put no other strings on a vintage-flavored Les Paul, 335 or SG.
~Caevan James-Michael Miller-O'Shite~
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Re: ToneQuest; Pickup comparison in a Custom Shop Les Paul

Post by mdrs » Mon Mar 12, 2012 9:18 pm

So, I got the standard height Gibson bridge cream pick up ring over the weekend, and installed it this afternoon. I also cleaned the fretboard with a light steel wool buff, and applied some Thompson's Fretboard oil. Also threw on a new set of D'Addario 10's on it. Caevan, I've tried two sets of the DR Pure Blues, and I can't say that I heard or felt a difference compared to the D'Addarios I normally use. They were fine, but I'm just not sure I could tell much of a difference.

I took a couple of photos of the different pick up rings that should help show the problem I was having. As you recall, I was hearing an "ice picky" tone when playing, especially on the two high strings, and especially as I played above the 5th fret. As it turns out, when I hit hard, those strings were fretting out on the neck side of the bridge pick up ring!!

And here's why; the Burst Brothers is an exact copy of a '59 Burst. They had taller pick guard rings compared to subsequent Les Pauls. So, by replacing the taller one with a more modern Gibson bridge pick up ring, I hoped to eliminate the string coming into contact, causing the "icy picky" tones.

Here are some photos showing the exact replica '59 bridge pick up ring that came with the Burst Brothers Les Paul on the left, and the standard replacement part Gibson bridge pick up ring on the right in each photo;

Image

The exact replica '59 is about 14/32" at the neck side of the ring;

Image

The Gibby replacement ring measures right at 10/32";

Image

I played the guitar for about an hour after putting the replacement ring on, and it looks like that solved the problem! I didn't hear the ice picky sound once!! THANK GOD!! It wasn't highly noticeable, but I COULD HEAR IT!! :shakesfist:

Problem Solved!!
Don

"There once was a note, Pure and Easy. Playing so free, like a breath rippling by."
"The guitar is such a great friend... If you play guitar, you are already blessed."

http://www.soundclick.com/bands/pagemus ... dID=574296

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Re: ToneQuest; Pickup comparison in a Custom Shop Les Paul

Post by mdrs » Tue May 28, 2013 3:42 pm

We're back!!!! :)

So, after finding out that the initial problem of the "ice picky" sound I was hearing on the limited run "Burst Brother's" Custom Shop LP was, in fact, coming from the pickup rings that were a bit too tall, causing strings to fret out at times on the pickup ring itself, I've been thinking that I'd never really given the original custom wound Gibson Custom Shop pickups a fair chance. So, today, I took the WCR Fillmore set out of the BB LP, and put the originals back in. And, guess what?

They sound great!! They sound a bit louder to my ear, but NOT at all overpowering. Great string separation, and a nice warm fuzzy tone from the neck pu.

This is a great guitar!! The neck feels wider than a standard LP, probably due to the fuller carve on the neck. However, it's thickness from fretboard to the back of the neck seems very reminiscent of the early '60's real Burst I played a couple of years back. If you don't like baseball bat necks (I happen to LOVE them, personally) than this is a thicker, more vintagey neck without being too big.

I'm glad, in a way, that the pickup rings caused the problem with the ice picky sound, because it led me to a fairly extensive comparison of the different pickups I've been able to compare and post about here. In the end, it looks like Gibson's custom wound pickups were really quite amazing, in their own right. They are not off the shelf Gibson pickups. They really were wound to match the specific makeup of the BB LP. And, the match seems quite good.

So, back to square one in a very good way!! :rawk:
Don

"There once was a note, Pure and Easy. Playing so free, like a breath rippling by."
"The guitar is such a great friend... If you play guitar, you are already blessed."

http://www.soundclick.com/bands/pagemus ... dID=574296

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Re: ToneQuest; Pickup comparison in a Custom Shop Les Paul

Post by mdrs » Mon Sep 04, 2017 9:20 am

Just a quick post here; I have a new favorite PAF replacment humbucker set; It's Wizz PAF Premium Clone pickups. I've put two sets into a couple of Gibsons (one is a "1960 Classic", the other a mahogany Explorer), and they sound GREAT. The set in my Explorer are uncovered, and sound outstanding. There is a warmth, a thickness, but they have clarity, even when pushed. The crunch doesn't get muddy. The set in my LP "1960 Classic" are covered, and sound a bit more rounded with a bit less edge. Personally I prefer the tone in the uncovered ones, though the covered ones are as good as any PAF replacment I've tried.

I heard about these first in an interview with Brad Whitford of Aerosmith fame, and since have heard many pros who use them (Ed King, original Lynyrd Skynyrd).

Wizz are just coming out with "signature" PAF replacments, beginning with two Duane Allman sets. One is the hotter wound Dark Burst set, and the other is a set aimed to copy the set that Duane took out of his '57 Goldtop and put in his Cherry Burst LP. I haven't tried these yet.

If I can, I'll try to get a recording of the sets I have, though don't hold your breath, as hunting season is about to commence. :horns: :horns:

:snax:

http://www.wizz-pickups.net/
Don

"There once was a note, Pure and Easy. Playing so free, like a breath rippling by."
"The guitar is such a great friend... If you play guitar, you are already blessed."

http://www.soundclick.com/bands/pagemus ... dID=574296

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