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Help match Heritage H555(es335) with pickup

mch5019

Member
Messages
33
I have a nice heritage H555. Very similar to the ES335. The pickups in it are no good. I can't stand them. I am unsure as to what is exactly in there. I just know I don't like them. I got it used on an amp transaction last year. Beautiful guitar plays great but the pickups on them just are not what i want. I have searched all over the forums and it seems to come down that in the es335 people really like the SD Seth Lovers and Antiquities. However, I know that those guitars have rosewood fretboards. The only thing i'm concerned about is the fretboard...it is ebony on the Heritage.

Now, I have a Gibson Les Paul Studio w/ an ebony fretboard with Pearly Gates in it...love em. Pretty much I do swampy finger picking and slide on the LP. In the Heritage, I'm going for a nice warm mellow blues sound but also rock like many of you. Will mostly be flat-picking. I think I'm going for the ultimate semi-hollow body blues tone. Something possibly slightly compressed but maybe not. Maybe that needs to come from the amp and a pedal. I just don't know with the ebony fretboard what would sound good. The ebony in general seems to have a faster attack...not bright as many people thing. I am open to suggestions.

I play mainly through tweed amps...30 watt 5e3, tweed champ, champion 600 and Fender excelsior. Looking to add some BF amps and maybe the Marshall Class 5/Vox AC4TV to the lineup in the future....we all have the itch don't we? It is an endless quest.

Anyway, please help. I am seeking advice. I like ebony but am not sold on it entirely forever but for now I really need good information. If somebody wants to offer something for this guitar I'm open to whatever. I'll try to get some pics up here for everybody.
 

jads57

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
6,190
Heritage offers HRW p/ups that are very nice. Also some other suggestions for you Manilus PAF's, Sheptone PAF's, Vintage Vibe PAF's(you can swap magnets), 36th Anniversiry DiMarzio PAF's. The list goes on and on. Just look to see what's a good deal in TGP forum used at the moment. For me what works best is the following specs
Neck: PAF type p/up,Alnico 2 magnet, 7.5k range Bridge:pAF type p/up, Alnico 5 magnet, 8.5K range
 

73Fender

Member
Messages
3,980
From looking at the picture, they might be Schaller Golden 50s pickups. They have 2 adjusting screws per side. They would be labeled Schaller made in Germany on the bottom. I like them in a LP type, never tried them in a semi hollow. I have Antiquities that I love in my 535.

With the ebony board the 555 is kind of more like a 355 then a 335. Maybe ask the folks on the HOC forum for some ideas. Beautiful guitar BTY.
 

Joe L

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
1,360
I put Fralin Pure PAFs in my 1995 H555 and love them. The tone is sweet and clean. The neck pup is perhaps one of the cleanest I have ever heard. Absolutely no mudd! Prior to making my decision to go with Fralin's, I gave Lindy a call and spoke with him to discuss what I was looking for. He is a great guy, always available to speak with players and potetntial customers. I also put a set of his vintage pups in my Tele and am very happy.

Lastly, beautiful guitar pics. I have a honey burst. Lots of luck.
 
Last edited:

jzgtrguy

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
6,667
I had those Schallers in a H-575. Didn't care for them either. On that guitar I'd check out Lollar Imperials or Imperial low winds,
 

Joe L

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
1,360
I've also heard good things about JR Rolf PAFS. He's a guy you can also call to discuss your needs.
 

Luke Duke

Member
Messages
255
I have a nice heritage H555. Very similar to the ES335. The pickups in it are no good. I can't stand them. I am unsure as to what is exactly in there. I just know I don't like them. I got it used on an amp transaction last year. Beautiful guitar plays great but the pickups on them just are not what i want. I have searched all over the forums and it seems to come down that in the es335 people really like the SD Seth Lovers and Antiquities. However, I know that those guitars have rosewood fretboards. The only thing i'm concerned about is the fretboard...it is ebony on the Heritage.

Now, I have a Gibson Les Paul Studio w/ an ebony fretboard with Pearly Gates in it...love em. Pretty much I do swampy finger picking and slide on the LP. In the Heritage, I'm going for a nice warm mellow blues sound but also rock like many of you. Will mostly be flat-picking. I think I'm going for the ultimate semi-hollow body blues tone. Something possibly slightly compressed but maybe not. Maybe that needs to come from the amp and a pedal. I just don't know with the ebony fretboard what would sound good. The ebony in general seems to have a faster attack...not bright as many people thing. I am open to suggestions.

I play mainly through tweed amps...30 watt 5e3, tweed champ, champion 600 and Fender excelsior. Looking to add some BF amps and maybe the Marshall Class 5/Vox AC4TV to the lineup in the future....we all have the itch don't we? It is an endless quest.

Anyway, please help. I am seeking advice. I like ebony but am not sold on it entirely forever but for now I really need good information. If somebody wants to offer something for this guitar I'm open to whatever. I'll try to get some pics up here for everybody.
Gorgeous guitar!

I had the Schallers in a H150 and they sounded decent, but the high end was pretty rough at times.

Seths are really warm and Antiquities are fairly warm too compared to what you've got. Thing is you'd want to order the Ants as a "floor shop custom" with un-aged covers/screws for cosmetic reasons. The Seth and Antiquity are going to use period correct parts from butyrate to baseplates. If you're an "everything affects everything" kind of guy you can appreciate that. If you want a mellow sound but with a lot of articulation and a bell-like top end the Duncan Alnico 2 Pro (think an idealized Alnico 2 T-Top) is a great choice. I've had them in a few guitars, and tried them in an Epi Dot (I believe) long ago.

Out of the Duncan camp I'd shoot an email to Owen Duffy, I'm about to have him wind me up some pups soon for my R8. He uses very period correct parts unlike a lot of boutique winders. I met Rob from Arcane at NAMM and he seems like a super guy, but his business has just exploded it appears and he's real slow to return emails.

I beat on period correct parts, specifically butyrate, because paying 300-500 bucks for a set of pup wound on cheap ABS plastic any fool can get from StewMac has no appeal to me. Even though butyrate is going to bow or shrink over 50 years it's got nothing on ABS which is going to get spider veins all between the pole pieces.

Luke
 

teleman1

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
15,335
I put Fralin Pure PAFs in my 1995 H555 and love them. The tone is sweet and clean. The neck pup is perhaps one of the cleanest I have ever heard. Absolutely no mudd! Prior to making my decision to go with Fralin's, I gave Lindy a call and spoke with him to discuss what I was looking for. He is a great guy, always available to speak with players and potetntial customers. I also put a set of his vintage pups in my Tele and am very happy also.

Lastly, beautiful guitar pics. I have a honey burst. Lots of luck.
:banana
 

SouthpawGuy

Member
Messages
2,858
As mentioned already the pickups are most likely Schallers. I have them in a solid body 157, and I love them in that guitar, haven't tried them in a Heritage semi as mine ( 535 and Prospect) have SD '59s or Seth Lovers.

Another point to note would be the neck .... the standard neck wood on 555s used to be maple with an ebony board. That changed to mahogany with rosewood board a few years back, although the website info still says maple / ebony. I'd guess your particular guitar has a maple neck ?

I'd imagine a 555 with Schallers and maple / ebony would sound quite a bit different to one with Seths and mahogany / rosewood.
 

mch5019

Member
Messages
33
Gorgeous guitar!

I had the Schallers in a H150 and they sounded decent, but the high end was pretty rough at times.

Seths are really warm and Antiquities are fairly warm too compared to what you've got. Thing is you'd want to order the Ants as a "floor shop custom" with un-aged covers/screws for cosmetic reasons. The Seth and Antiquity are going to use period correct parts from butyrate to baseplates. If you're an "everything affects everything" kind of guy you can appreciate that. If you want a mellow sound but with a lot of articulation and a bell-like top end the Duncan Alnico 2 Pro (think an idealized Alnico 2 T-Top) is a great choice. I've had them in a few guitars, and tried them in an Epi Dot (I believe) long ago.

Out of the Duncan camp I'd shoot an email to Owen Duffy, I'm about to have him wind me up some pups soon for my R8. He uses very period correct parts unlike a lot of boutique winders. I met Rob from Arcane at NAMM and he seems like a super guy, but his business has just exploded it appears and he's real slow to return emails.

I beat on period correct parts, specifically butyrate, because paying 300-500 bucks for a set of pup wound on cheap ABS plastic any fool can get from StewMac has no appeal to me. Even though butyrate is going to bow or shrink over 50 years it's got nothing on ABS which is going to get spider veins all between the pole pieces.

Luke
I am an "everything affects everything" type of guy. On that note, I have come to learn over the years that if you are going to mod anything on the guitar to change tone, do pickups first then nut, bridge, strings, cables etc. (not necessarily in that order after pickups). In amps, change the speaker first, then tubes, caps, etc.

Pups and speakers are the most immediate bang for the buck while the rest are subtle nuances in feel, tone, harmonics, comlexity, clarity and the list goes on. This is just my experience.

So to reply to your post, yes, I would appreciate the SD's for the period correct parts. "Everything affects everything. "

Still torn between ants and seths. I am looking into the other suggestions some of you posted so thank you. I've always had the interpretation that DiMarzio pups were more for metal and hard rock. Can you point to any artists that use the pups some of you suggested?

The lollars are of interest. I have a set of Blackface strat pickups in an alder/rosewood setup that sound great. They are the flat pole pieces. Flat poles, in my opinion, sound like they have more clarity than staggered, but, staggered have a bit more "squishy" sound than flat poles. Great pickups. God bless the men and women who have spent countless hours manufacturing greatness for the serious soul.
 

twangbanger

Member
Messages
1,493
I put Fralin Pure PAFs in my 1995 H555 and love them. The tone is sweet and clean. The neck pup is perhaps one of the cleanest I have ever heard. Absolutely no mudd! Prior to making my decision to go with Fralin's, I gave Lindy a call and spoke with him to discuss what I was looking for. He is a great guy, always available to speak with players and potetntial customers. I also put a set of his vintage pups in my Tele and am very happy also.

Lastly, beautiful guitar pics. I have a honey burst. Lots of luck.
:agree Clear ,balanced and no mud !
 

jazzrat

Member
Messages
1,084
Not exactly the same guitar but my last Heritage was a 575 Custom. It. had an ebony board as well. My favorite pickups in that guitar were Fralin Unbuckers. Warm but clear with great string separation.
I have also had Dimarzio 36th Anny's in a Soloway semi hollow that sounded terrific.
Gorgeous guitar you have there.
 

mch5019

Member
Messages
33
I wonder how many players have missed the opportunity to try Dimarzio 36th PAF's for the same reason you mention - Dimarzio's are for metal and hard rock? Valued TGP contributor and fine jazz musician Jim Soloway is soon to take ownership of a custom Heritage he had commissioned. You might find it interesting that its sole pickup is to be the Dimarzio.

That said, as an H535 owner who plays primarily thru a Richter 5E3, the stock Seth Lovers are so responsive and colorful that I have no desire to change them.
Just recently started reading the Heritage forum and there seems to be a strong preference for the Seth Lovers among the cognoscenti. Throbaks,Lollar Imperials, and many of the designs already mentioned in this thread are suggested as changes to the Schaller sound.

Gotta love the cognoscenti. LOL. Thanks!

The Seth Lovers are what I have read a lot about too. The 535, though, has rosewood fretboard. I wonder if the ebony makes that much of a difference.
 

mch5019

Member
Messages
33
Being that I got this Heritage on a trade, and not being knowledgeable about the H555, does anybody have an idea how much it is worth? I know I see H535's going 1800-2100 about. How much on a trade? How much outright?
 

jazzrat

Member
Messages
1,084
I think in general those prices would be high for a used 535. I have seen 555's in that range but I've also seen them as low as $1750
 

slider313

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
8,376
Fralin Pure PAF's with a 5% underwound neck would work well.

I would be installing a set of A4's with a low wind neck, regardless of which "brand" you choose.
 






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