Talk me into/out of some pickups please!

Discussion in 'Pickups, Electronics & General Tech' started by StevenC, Sep 18, 2021.

  1. StevenC

    StevenC Javier Strat 8 2022

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    I got my old RG370 back recently from my cousin learning guitar and got it all cleaned and set up nicely. It has always played really well but the pickups are pretty muddy to me. It's got the original Infinity pickups.

    This has always been my D standard guitar and that means lots of Death riffs, so I'm thinking about an X2N for the bridge. Any advice on complimentary middle and neck pickups would be helpful. Alternatively other suggestions are welcome.
     
  2. jaxadam

    jaxadam SS.org Regular

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    Dimarzio FS-1 single is their best and holds up very well to high output pickups. Hum from Hell or Norton in neck.
     
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  3. odibrom

    odibrom .

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    Start by putting in some new pots with higher resistance level, instead of 500kOhms, experiment with 1MOhm (1 million or 1000k Ohms). This changes completely the sound one think the pickup has...

    Or you may not go that far and just replace the pots for new ones with better quality... and a treble bleed and a a new capacitor for the tone pot... cheaper than a new set of pickups and may bring new life to a guitar...

    Other than that, maybe some Alnico loaded pickups...?
     
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  4. c7spheres

    c7spheres GuitArtist

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    I don't think you can go wrong with an X2N for Death riffs.
     
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  5. Zhysick

    Zhysick SS.org Regular

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    Good quality pots is a must but just use 500k.

    X2N in bridge, FS-1 in middle and PAF Pro in neck if you want thick but clear or Humbucker from hell if you want clear pristine bright.

    That's the best. Period.

    :lol:

    Death forever!!
     
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  6. Neon_Knight_

    Neon_Knight_ SS.org Regular

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    Personally, I would dismiss most of the popular neck pickups as not being high enough output to pair with an X2N - too much volume drop when switching (compensating by lowering the X2N / raising the neck pup affects the tone as well as the volume).

    Buckethead and Michael Romeo (Symphony X) both use a Tone Zone in the neck with X2N in the bridge.

    You could consider a D Activator or D Activator-X neck pickup with X2N in the bridge, as they both pair very well with their namesake bridge models that are similar output to the X2N.

    Or you could consider a D Activator-X set. From experience, I can say the D Activator bridge has no trouble at all achieving Chuck's Death tone. The D Activator-X bridge is widely considered to sound somewhere between the X2N and the D Activator bridge.
     
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  7. Neon_Knight_

    Neon_Knight_ SS.org Regular

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    If you like bright neck pickups, Super 2 is another strong option - certainly packs enough output to match well with the X2N.
     
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  8. Zhysick

    Zhysick SS.org Regular

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    Mmmm... I lowered the X2N pretty much but that is something I do with most pickups so the humbucker from hell wouldn't be a problem BUT if you run it high for maximum grit and compression then the Super2 would be a better match.

    Yes, I have been corrected.
     
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  9. Neon_Knight_

    Neon_Knight_ SS.org Regular

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    Definitely entirely subjective what sounds best, but I always use this as a starting point for my pickup heights, then tweak subtly from there until it sounds best.

    I do have my bridge pickups slightly further from the strings, but always have the bridge/neck outputs matched well enough that the height difference to achieve equal volumes is fairly minor - so that both can be very close to their optimal position for tone (imo), without volume drop at the neck.

    Out of interest, how low is your X2N (in relation to the strings, while fretted at highest fret)?
     
  10. Zhysick

    Zhysick SS.org Regular

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    I have two eehhrr... Ways to do this. In guitars I use for more blues or more versatile stuff I prefer the neck pickup to be clear/bright and with matched output and for the ones I use for metal I prefer to have my neck pickup with a thick tone and louder in volume than the bridge pickup so it's kind of a boost when I swtich for the neck pickup for soloing.

    I don't have any guitar with DiMarzios right now, I'm only using EMGs at the moment and I can't remember the height of the pickups but even if I had one all I could do is measure but will mean nothing as I do this by ear...

    I normally look for my sweet spot on the bridge pickup and adjust the neck pickup accordingly.
     
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  11. BabUShka

    BabUShka SS.org Regular

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    That differs a lot, depending on the pickup. I had a BKP BlackDog that was almost touching the strings to get the best tone, and then I have a SD Distortion which I like to set pretty low for good clarity.
     
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