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I decided my Les Paul is worthy of a set of real PAF's (and did something about it)

soldano16

Member
Messages
2,347
Yesterday I voted with my wallet. Now I figured for the close to $2K I spent on 2 pickups, I should at least get some TGP pleasure from stirring up debate on the "value" of real PAF pickups.

OK - not true PAFs but the bridge PU is from a '61 LP/SG and the other is an early 60's pre T-top Pat # with a 50's long magnet. I've never had vintage Gibson PU's in a guitar before. I've had a few boutique humbuckers (Tom Holmes, Florence Voodoo) and really liked those. The guitar currently has Gibson Classic 57's and does sound amazing. But the lure of real PAF's has always been there. Can an amazing sounding guitar sound even better?

The guitar is my Guitar Clinic replica which is the best of the 4 replicas I have owned along the way (the other 3 being 2 Monty's and a Keebler). Along the way, I've owned a 56 goldtop, 59 Jr, 68 goldtop and 30 other LP's.

The guitar is SO good, it seemed worthy of the try. My experience has been that the more you play different Les Pauls, the more learn just how much difference there is in the quality of the tone between the great ones and the average ones. It will take over a week to get them into Canada - ouch. But I've waited decades to own a PAF so I guess I can wait a bit longer for 2 of them.

Some Clinic porn....



 

gadzooka

Member
Messages
507
That money may make some think you're crazy, but there's no denying it; the pickups are possibly the biggest factor in an electric guitar's voice. If you know what you're after, and you have the "deaux" to make it happen, then I say congratulations. If they aren't up to your expectations, you can hopefully recoup the cost easily.
 

CocoTone

Senior Member
Messages
2,642
That is a beautiful guitar.:AOK I am interested to read your findings on this. Friend of mine built your guitar. Worked at the Clinic when those were born.

CT.
 

DEMENTED

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
1,643
Not my experience at all. Great PU's will not change a mediocre guitar.

The question is will great PU's change a great guitar.
Yes, but how do your know the PAF's you are going to install are great ones? I can't believe that every 45-50 yr old PAF is a great one. Not trying to be a downer, I'm just saying that there must be variation in every pickup just like every guitar is different. It will be interesting to hear about your results!
 

Mike7

Member
Messages
572
Playing into the amps you have in your sig. line, those pickups should turn your LP into a MONSTER!!!!!
Play it LOUD!!!!!
 

musicman1

Member
Messages
4,157
I think 2k for p/ups is insane. You mean that there is No pickup manufacturer for significantly less money that comes close to replicating vintage p/ups? I might have been more convinced 35 years ago when all you really had was Lawrence, Duncan and DiMarzio, but with the glut of boutique p/up companies this is really excessive. But hey its YOUR money my man...
 

francè

Member
Messages
44
I think 2k for p/ups is insane. You mean that there is No pickup manufacturer for significantly less money that comes close to replicating vintage p/ups? I might have been more convinced 35 years ago when all you really had was Lawrence, Duncan and DiMarzio, but with the glut of boutique p/up companies this is really excessive. But hey its YOUR money my man...
I thought as you, but I try every kind of boutique replica and I never find the tone of a real paf.........now I decide myself to looking for a rela PAF, even if the price is crazy!
 

doc

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
7,177
I'll be interested in the report back that you'll hopefully post once they're in. I'm especially curious about your thoughts comparing these to the Holmes and Voodoos. I'm guessing you'll conclude they're a little different, but not by much and not clearly better in every way.
 
Messages
11,284
Nice looking LP there. I always wanted to do that, especially when you could get PAF's for a Hyundai payment not a Ferrari payment.
 

jimlp

Member
Messages
634
I played a real 58 LP about a year ago that was a real dog tone wise, but it was dead sounding unplugged as well. Real PAFs are all over the map tone wise as the winds/magnets differed seemingly depending on what they got the best deal on parts wise. I have read about old PAF's having A2, A5, and A4 magnets. I do not know if the actual gauge of wire varied that much but we know the # of windings definitely did. I hope the "recipe" you get goes well with that Beautiful LP.
 

drbob1

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
28,117
I love real PAFs. I have a custom Schecter semi-hollow that came with pretty decent Duncans, but substituting pre-T tops just made it come alive: more "vocal" and expressive than any newer pickup I've tried. The only thing is that they're not potted so there's a problem in very loud or high gain situations...
 

soldano16

Member
Messages
2,347
The only thing is that they're not potted so there's a problem in very loud or high gain situations...
Neither apply to me. You might think otherwise from my amp list but the Ultimate Attenuator keeps me tone happy at Deluxe Reverb volume.
 
Messages
2,931
Gotta tell you, close to 2k for PUPS is not IMO the direction I'd go in. I just don't think that you'd get 2k worth of tone over and above the other high end PAF repro's. If you think even as a great guitar, it's 'missing something', then I'd look to other guitars...


But, it will be a fun experiment.
 




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