View Full Version : What is the absolute BEST humbucker for blues & classic rock?
04-08-2008, 04:02 PM
I only have room for a Bridge pickup....
Does it make a difference whether the pickup attaches directly to the body or not?
HELP!!! I need some advice from someone who has already gone down this path.
04-08-2008, 04:09 PM
There are many humbuckers that are good for blues/classic rock. I think you would prefer a low output pickup. I would recommend the Gibson Burstbucker, Duncan Pearly Gates, or Duncan Alnico, or Dimarzio PAF Bridge. I think the sound you are looking for is a PAF type sound.
What type of guitar and amp are you using? You can also look at the Duncan JB for more hard rock stuff, but a PAF type will probably be your best bet
04-08-2008, 04:39 PM
Thanks for the responses.
The pickup is for a Korina neck & body strat-type guitar with only routing for a single bridge humbucker.
I have tried PAFs and although I like them, I was hoping for something a little different. I have heard about BareKnuckles and Scatterwounds, but are they worth the price? Are there any other "boutique" pickups that are worthwhile. Will the Korina neck and body make that much of a difference in sound?
04-08-2008, 04:52 PM
After trying a few...I would say that the WB Vintage hot tuned PAF's w/ the '67 wire are it!:BluesBros
For Allmans, Peter Green etc they do it:drink
04-08-2008, 04:55 PM
WCR BETSET.....look no further!!!:bow
04-08-2008, 04:57 PM
GFS makes some nice 59 PAF replicas - "Vintage 59s". Not too hot - although a tad hotter than the real thing - very nice crisp highs with a full clear sound. Great for blues and classic rock and they won't fry your clean tone. Cheap too. These pickups are severely underpriced IMO.
04-08-2008, 04:58 PM
I've been seriously considering the Suhr pickups after reading a lot about them.
04-08-2008, 05:02 PM
Give Jim a call. You'll be glad you did. http://www.wcrguitar.com/
04-08-2008, 05:18 PM
I swapped out my stock Gibson bridge pickup in my Les Paul for a Rio Grande Texas Barbecue - and have never looked back. Like a PAF on steroids.
04-08-2008, 05:20 PM
Rio Grande's are amazing pickups.
04-08-2008, 05:31 PM
Another vote for the Rios. They are way underrated.
04-08-2008, 05:37 PM
Another vote for WCR's.
04-08-2008, 05:47 PM
dilythium crystal magnets with flux capacitor windings but they don't work on earth the magnetic poles interfere with tone...
04-08-2008, 07:18 PM
what kind of bridge does it have? also, single bucker guitars are going to be less "blues" and more "rock".
04-08-2008, 08:35 PM
WCR Go-dwd, Drkburst, either or.
04-08-2008, 08:53 PM
Wolftone Marshallheads...classic PAF, slightly overwound without losing any of that PAF character ;)
04-08-2008, 09:04 PM
From what you've said already...
on the cheap, a very good, med-low output 'bucker that can cop "classic" tones and also some bluesy "quack" is the DiMarzio BREED.
Have them in the bridge and neck on a custom guitar and it has a great range of tone!
04-08-2008, 09:12 PM
Wolfe..He'll wind em till you like em.
04-08-2008, 10:02 PM
Well, you have a NICE problem! And fortunately, there's many good solutions--don't rush--do a little homework and it'll pay off.
+1 on Wolfetone Marshall Heads--I have them in 2 guitars and they really do the classic rock thang to a "T". Wolfe is about as cool a cat as they come too!
I'd like to add a few others I've had good luck with. Rio Grande BBQ Bucker--honkin' fat tone--horribly underrated, nice price.
WCR (Jim) is a class guy and winds one HELL of a pickup--this is coming from a die-hard MG (Moore/Green) set user--they are pricey, but they have mojo out the wazoo that is truly priceless (I sound like Yoda...)
I'll get chastised for this, but I had and Angus Young model Gibson and it was BAAAADDD arsed!! Sounded like the A man, but just a killer rock/blues tone.
04-08-2008, 10:08 PM
Low output Vintage Wolfe pups OR Jim Rolph's '58 low output.
04-09-2008, 12:22 AM
A lot of good things out there, but I can say good things about:
WB 67-07 VTPH
Tom Holmes 450/455
WCR (just about everything he makes)
04-09-2008, 12:52 AM
www.bareknucklepickups.co.uk - the mule.
04-09-2008, 02:58 AM
There are some differences in quality but the problem with the "absolute BEST" question is pickups are still partially a matter of taste, the simplest variation is a matter of tuning, a choice of tone control. With the bridge humbucker I do like switchable settings on it though -- currently I have 3 pickups on my guitar, but only the bridge is connected, with 4 sounds from it (the difference between using one coil or the other is quite audible)... although I'm looking at finally rewiring it.
04-09-2008, 05:39 AM
Rio Grande's are amazing pickups.
+1 The Rio Grande BBQ in my LP Std does the classic rock thang REAL well...can also do classic metal like Priest, Maiden, Dio but Aerosmith to ZZ Top is the best fit!
04-09-2008, 07:45 AM
I have to say,they're are a ton of choices.That being said-WCR.
04-09-2008, 07:52 AM
I've got Dr V's in my R8 and Marshallheads in my R9...i'm looking to replace the Seths in my R7 with the WCR Moore/Greens for a different flavour :AOK
04-09-2008, 07:58 AM
What amp? Some amps will react better with lower output pickups and higher preamp settings or possibly an OD pedal. . Other amps need to be pushed by hotter pickups to sound killer. With so many variables, there is no best. There are good suggestions here. Do some research and use the method most here do.... buy and try.
04-09-2008, 11:09 AM
If there was an "absolute BEST humbucker", there wouldn't be umpteen zillion of them on the market. And we'd all sound exactly the same.
04-09-2008, 08:16 PM
Very happy with my WCR Goodwoods.
04-10-2008, 04:42 AM
you should try Duncan Alnico II Pro pups, i used to have one, and its sounds freaking sweet playing blues with it.
thats the same pups that slash is using on his LP.
04-10-2008, 05:20 AM
I'm not 100% positive but I think you may have to check your string spacing on your bridge as some strat type guitars that have used PAF style pickups need to have the pickup mounted on an angle to get the strings over the magnets. ( like EVH's Frankenstien ) I don't think some of the posts read your question and application and were only answering on " the best HB for classic rock and blues". WCR, Duncan, and Rio grande all make great products so you might want to contact them for questions with your application. I've had dealings with WCR and Rio and the customer service was excellent.
04-10-2008, 09:24 PM
I'm going to suggest that you don't buy a new pickup yet!
Go play a few guitars at your local store and note the pickups that are in each because I've found that the differences can make you love or hate it depending on a few factors. For me, the difference between alnico 2 and alnico 5 is night and day. I very much prefer alnico 2s, but I didn't know this when I bought my first few pickups, so I wasted my money. 2s are generally smoother with softer highs and looser bass... I like that. 5s have a tighter bass and the highs sound different, generally.
Find out which you like.
Lower output (PAF style) have better clean sounds... again generally... while still having great distortion, depending on your amp and pedal preferences. Find what you like before buying so you won't go through 10 pups before learning what you want.
Just my suggestion.
Oh yeah, the string spacing matters. Go to Dimarzio dot com and read about string spacing on their FAQ page... it's very informative. You need the proper spacing for your guitar.
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