2 Humbucker Super Strat Options?

Variable

Member
Messages
369
Hey all, I have had my eye on a Suhr Pete Thorn and that S style guitar. However, new that's a bit spendy for me for what you get and the used prices for the PT are pretty unreasonable IMHO. I also have the Thornbucker in my Suhr Modern and am looking for a different sound in this guitar.

Can you make some recommendations on new or used options in that style (bolt on neck, S style body with contours, 2HB, 5-way switching, no pickguard, good pickups, etc)? Looking for versatile pickups on the brighter end of the spectrum, but I'm also fine swapping out if it doesn't quite make the mark.

Price range around $2000-2500. Thanks!

Edit: I like chunkier necks. I consider the 60s C neck on my Custom Shop 1960's Strat to be about perfect.
 
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JMMP1

Silver Supporting Member
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839
Music Man Sabre and Petrucci Signatures come to mind (I really like Music Man instruments....)
The Sabres are still very new, so used prices haven’t fallen much, but you could get lucky. Petrucci models have been out forever, and can be had anywhere from $1k on up, depending on year, color, condition, and options. The pickups on the Petruccis may not be bright enough for you, but there would be plenty left in your budget to get pretty much any pickup you could want.
 

Variable

Member
Messages
369
What's the consensus on the new PRS CE24 models? I wasn't a fan of the 85/15 pickups when I had my SC245 a few years ago, but wondering if the TCI 85/15s in combination with the maple neck might make it brighter and less brittle sounding (those pickups had this weird artificial / plastic sounding top end in my SC245).

Regarding the MM Sabre, that's actually pretty high on my list. The price is just a bit much to chew.
 
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crazymauler

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
273
I recently did an HH Strat style Warmoth build and am super happy with the results. Like you, I wanted humbuckers on the brighter end of the scale. I went with a Lollar Imperial (F-spaced) in the bridge and an El Rayo in the neck. I couldn't be happier with how this turned out, really great tones with all the benefits of a humbucker and yet remarkably Strat-y. I'm using a 3-way switch here. You mentioned a 5-way switch, and both of these pickups come in 4-conductor so I'm sure you could make good use of a 5-way scheme. I got them both in 4-conductor in case I wanted to do that, but I'm getting everything I need from just the 3-way setup (and 99% of what I play is either on the neck only or bridge only).
Also, Lollar was really great at answering questions and turnaround time was faster than expected.

 

crazymauler

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
273
I'll also add: the Suhr Thornbuckers are also a fantastic choice as well! I replaced the SSV in a Suhr Classic S with a Thornbucker, they're very close but both great. And I put a pair of Thornbuckers in my PRS Custom 22 and they absolutely rock, and the split tones are stellar.
Killer pickups!
 

jvin248

Member
Messages
5,255
What's the consensus on the new PRS CE24 models? ... brighter and less brittle sounding ...
24 fret models will be more SG-ish while 22 fret versions will be more LP-ish due to the neck pickup getting pushed closer to the bridge by those extra frets.

Don't forget that besides pickup swaps ... you can measure and select pots 'n caps. I haven't fixed a guitar tone problem with swapping pickups in years since I figured out how much I can push things around with those parts.

As for guitar options ... PRS certainly (check out S2 line too), used Fender Strat with 50s style neck (chunkier) and swap in a loaded HH pickguard, or Reverend guitars may have something fun that will fit you too (but not a Strat specific) something like a "Super Rev". Have you seen Harley Benton models? You could always swap parts for your favorites.

.
 

Variable

Member
Messages
369
I'll also add: the Suhr Thornbuckers are also a fantastic choice as well! I replaced the SSV in a Suhr Classic S with a Thornbucker, they're very close but both great. And I put a pair of Thornbuckers in my PRS Custom 22 and they absolutely rock, and the split tones are stellar.
Killer pickups!
Agree on that. Just want a different sound since I already have a TB in my Modern! I was thinking maybe the Friedman pickups?
 

Variable

Member
Messages
369
I recently did an HH Strat style Warmoth build and am super happy with the results. Like you, I wanted humbuckers on the brighter end of the scale. I went with a Lollar Imperial (F-spaced) in the bridge and an El Rayo in the neck. I couldn't be happier with how this turned out, really great tones with all the benefits of a humbucker and yet remarkably Strat-y. I'm using a 3-way switch here. You mentioned a 5-way switch, and both of these pickups come in 4-conductor so I'm sure you could make good use of a 5-way scheme. I got them both in 4-conductor in case I wanted to do that, but I'm getting everything I need from just the 3-way setup (and 99% of what I play is either on the neck only or bridge only).
Also, Lollar was really great at answering questions and turnaround time was faster than expected.

I'm seriously considering something like this. Precision Guitar Kits will let you do a custom build for 2HB for ~600 for neck and body. I've looked at Warmoth as well.
 

splatt

david torn / splattercell
Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
25,180
I recently did an HH Strat style Warmoth build and am super happy with the results. Like you, I wanted humbuckers on the brighter end of the scale. I went with a Lollar Imperial (F-spaced) in the bridge and an El Rayo in the neck. I couldn't be happier with how this turned out, really great tones with all the benefits of a humbucker and yet remarkably Strat-y. I'm using a 3-way switch here. You mentioned a 5-way switch, and both of these pickups come in 4-conductor so I'm sure you could make good use of a 5-way scheme. I got them both in 4-conductor in case I wanted to do that, but I'm getting everything I need from just the 3-way setup (and 99% of what I play is either on the neck only or bridge only).
Also, Lollar was really great at answering questions and turnaround time was faster than expected.

niiice!
 

hangten

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
2,155
I recently did an HH Strat style Warmoth build and am super happy with the results. Like you, I wanted humbuckers on the brighter end of the scale. I went with a Lollar Imperial (F-spaced) in the bridge and an El Rayo in the neck. I couldn't be happier with how this turned out, really great tones with all the benefits of a humbucker and yet remarkably Strat-y. I'm using a 3-way switch here. You mentioned a 5-way switch, and both of these pickups come in 4-conductor so I'm sure you could make good use of a 5-way scheme. I got them both in 4-conductor in case I wanted to do that, but I'm getting everything I need from just the 3-way setup (and 99% of what I play is either on the neck only or bridge only).
Also, Lollar was really great at answering questions and turnaround time was faster than expected.

The best sounded Tele I've played had an El Rayo in the neck...incredible pickup...

You've got me wanting to do this to one of my Strats - in fact I AM doing it, just with cheap pickups...if it doesn't meet my expectations I might have to give Lollar a ring....
 
Messages
1,736
Funny you wrote this because I was thinking of doing the same.

I couldn't afford a Pete Thorn Sig guitar at the time so I made my own. Plus I wanted his guitar in white (don't make it).

Fender HSS Strat with Suhr Pete Thorn "Thornbucker Plus" in the bridge and Suhr V60LP single coils in the neck / middle position with tricked out wiring harness. Pete told me what to get on this forum.

Now I want to change the neck single coil to a Suhr Pete Thorn "Thornbucker" not the plus for a H-S-H style (want to keep the middle Suhr V60LP). I would need to change the wiring harness because the pots for the single coils are CTS 250K and would need 500K. I also want to coil split both of the Thornbuckers. 920D makes a 500K-250K-500K wiring harness with coil splitting.

Untitled by jpjr50, on Flickr
 

Golem

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
655
I really like my Ibanez AZ prestige and it seems to fit your description. Don't go with music man without trying one if you say you like chunky necks. I haven't tried every model, but they aren't chunky.
 

J Factor

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
1,246
Another vote for the Ibanez AZ. I have a Premium HH model and the playability is unsurpassed. The bridge is Gotoh 510 derived, and as long as I put some pencil graphite in the nut slots when I change strings, it refuses to go out of tune even with EVH style dives.
 




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