Recommendations for new bridge pickup in an RG7421PB?

Discussion in 'Pickups, Electronics & General Tech' started by Sentient, Nov 25, 2018.

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  1. Sentient

    Sentient Metal Dog Contributor

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    Greetings fellow guitarists who know more than me about pickups. Hoping you nice fellows can help me out with some advice...

    I've got an Ibanez 7421PB (Poplar Burl top/Mahogany body, Jatoba fretboard on a Maple neck) and I'm looking to replace the stock Quantum in the bridge with something much better/bitchin'/awesome yet within a reasonable price range (hopefully less than $100).

    Not looking to replace the neck pickup primarily because (A) I don't use it that much and (B) I'm not looking to spend the amount of money that a set of two new pickups will cost. So I'm just replacing that bridge humbucker for now.

    Looking for a nice "drop-in" replacement fit as I'm not looking to do any routing on this guitar. I don't want to be in the middle of an installation only to suddenly discover it doesn't fit. And I'm not sure how to know that in advance (that's where you smart dudes come in). I'm guessing this might rule out something like an EMG 81-7, but I don't know.

    I'm looking for something to create awesome metal tones, brutally heavy yet articulate clear notes with no muddy aspects. Saw the Seymour Duncan 7-string comparison vid by Keith Merrow and while I thought they all sounded pretty great, I noticed lots of comments saying the SH-5 Custom was best.

    Anyway, just looking for recommendations. Any and all advice is welcome and thanks in advance.
     
  2. Zoobiedood

    Zoobiedood SS.org Regular

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    I'd have to ask what you don't like about the current pickup. Hoping for 'better' without anything other than that is just going to result in something different which only may be better. More bass? Less scooped? More power? Less compression?
     
  3. lewis

    lewis SS.org Regular

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    Fishman.
    Brutal chugs and hifi clarity
     
  4. Sentient

    Sentient Metal Dog Contributor

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    Good point, sorry for not being more specific.

    The first time I plugged up the guitar and tried it out, I was immediately disheartened with how it just sounded weaker than I expected, especially on the low B and E. Checked pickup height; did not seem to be the issue.

    By comparison, I have two other six strings (a 2012 Schecter SLS C-1 FR with a Seymour Duncan Full Shred TB-10 in the bridge, and a 2011 Ibanez RGA42FM with an Ibanez CAP-LZ20 active in the bridge) and both of those just sound better, stronger, and heavier than this 7 string.

    Five minutes on Google seemed to reveal that the general consensus of the Internet was that Quantums sucked. Thus, now looking for "better". Stronger, less muddy, more clearer. More anger with a big bucket of brutality. Or the tone on God Forbid's "IV: Constitution of Treason". You know... that kind of better.
    Thanks, I'll check 'em out. Seems a bit pricey compared to others, though.
     
  5. lewis

    lewis SS.org Regular

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    but they are effectively 3 pickups in one set so hence the price.

    Active mode, passive mode and will coil split too
     
  6. EdgeCrusher

    EdgeCrusher SS.org Regular

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    My experience with Seymour Duncan 7 string pickups (JB-7 and Jazz-7) in an Ibanez RG7621 was that the pickup poles extended further than the shallow pickup routes would allow, requiring further routing. I am not sure if this is an issue with their more modern pickups like the Pegasus for example though.

    If you want direct replacement for low cost, you can't go wrong with Dimarzio. The D-Sonic is my personal favorite, though I would like to try out the Titan.
     
  7. KnightBrolaire

    KnightBrolaire jUsT bUy A 5150

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    d sonic or illuminator would work well for what you want. both get heavy gnarly tones no prob, with the d sonic being a better option if all you want to do is br00tz. the illuminator is less bass heavy and stiff sounding, while also being more tonally versatile ime.
     
  8. Sentient

    Sentient Metal Dog Contributor

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    Thanks, guys. Was also looking at the D Activator 7 Bridge but I find myself leaning towards the D-Sonic 7. I don't know. I read good things about the D-Sonic but I'm just hoping it sounds great in Mahogany with a Poplar Burl top. Hard to find a lot of feedback regarding that particular combo.
     
  9. KailM

    KailM SS.org Regular

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    Just thought I'd leave this here.
     
  10. KailM

    KailM SS.org Regular

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    My experience with the D-Sonic was in a 6-string guitar, but it was a heavy AF mahogany Les Paul. That pickup is bright enough that you won't run into any problems with darker sounding guitars. It has a nice tight low-end, but doesn't accomplish it by cutting all of your lows. Lots and lots of thick chunk -- but tracks quickly. I loved my D Sonic. But it's no match for a Black Winter or Nazgul, IMO.
     
  11. Sentient

    Sentient Metal Dog Contributor

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    Indeed, it was the Keith Merrow vids that really got me seriously wanting to upgrade my bridge pickup. But then I got the impression that I might have to do some routing for those Seymour Duncans as opposed to just simply dropping in a good Dimarzio. However...

    I did a bit of measuring with digital calipers last night and confirmed that width and length of the Nazgul (per the Seymour Duncan spec sheet) would fit perfectly. So the primary concern would be cavity depth.

    Is there any particular known distance from the strings that the Nazgul would need to be? My current stock pickup is maybe 3 or 4 mm from the strings but if I hear something like "No dude, you gotta have that Nazgul at least a half inch from the strings or it won't sound right" then I'll likely need to do some routing in the bottom of that bridge cavity. May need to do it regardless. Just not sure yet.

    Didn't really want to do that, but if that Nazgul is truly that much more mighty than a D-Sonic 7, then I'm not above doing a bit of wood removal, especially since I see both of those pickups currently at the same price.
     
  12. KailM

    KailM SS.org Regular

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    I run my Nazgul a hair closer to the strings than I do with the Black Winter, but it sounds good +/- 1/16" either way. It's not as hot as the BW.

    The biggest difference I notice between the two Seymour Duncan pups compared to the D Sonic is that their mids sound "angrier" and more aggressive, yet they still have a whopping low-end thump if you dial your amp for it. The D Sonic had that nice thump to it, but the mids didn't have as much grind and presence to my ears. It worked marvelously for basic chugging palm muted chords, but when letting chord ring out as well as single string riffs, it didn't have quite the aggression as those SD pups.
     
  13. TheWarAgainstTime

    TheWarAgainstTime "TWAT" for short

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    I just picked up a used 7621 that had a Nazgul in the bridge. The last owner had to remove some wood from the pickup cavity to accommodate the screws coming out of the back of the pickup, but it wasn't much, probably less than 2mm just where the screws would have hit the bottom. I've also had to Dremel out a bit of wood from the bridge pickup cavity of my 7620 to fit a Duncan Distortion to get the right pickup height. Safe to say you'd need to do at least a little bit of routing if you end up with the Duncans :2c:

    However, you could also work around the pickup height by either shimming the neck or trimming the screws so they don't stick out lower than the pickup tabs.
     
  14. littlebadboy

    littlebadboy SS.org Regular

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    DiMarzio Blaze bridge
     
  15. odibrom

    odibrom .

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    Be aware of the pickup's tabs, Ibanez has a tendency for shallow pickup routing. Many brands have their pickup tabs offset from the bobbins' base and that may not work.

    My advise is to FIRST remove the original pickup, measure it and then look around the brands' websites for their pickups' dimensions.

    As my experience goes, DiMarzio are generally a direct swap. D-Sonic 7, EVO7, Blaze Custom or Bridge are some interesting pickups to play. These will give you a fast attack and enough gain for most rock and metal styles. From these, for clarity, I'd bet on the D-Sonic.
     

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