Looking for very articulate, non mushy 'buckers for a 335

Noise Under The Floor

Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
12,503
So with that: PAF-ish spec, twangy, fast, good note articulation, not too hot. No wax potting. No 12 week wait. No $500 price tag. What humbucker should I be looking for?
Wolfetone Marshallhead MKII. You want the MKII models. No wax potting, slightly degaussed A5 magnets. No long waiting period, usually wound within a few days of ordering, and he’s got a 25% off sale going on now.
 
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650
Thank you all for the recommendations! I have an email into Wolfetone, and whatever he suggests is what I'm gonna order. Tons of high praise here (and other forums), I feel pretty confident he'll make me something that will work well for my needs.

I know you said you didn't want a $500 dollar set, but my impression of his prices are such that they haven't really gone up over the years.

Anyway he still makes some very compelling pickups.

Actually, his strat pickups are more in line with the market. Probably an indication your typical set of PAF clones is overpriced.
 

Noise Under The Floor

Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
12,503
Thank you all for the recommendations! I have an email into Wolfetone, and whatever he suggests is what I'm gonna order. Tons of high praise here (and other forums), I feel pretty confident he'll make me something that will work well for my needs.
You can’t go wrong with Wolfe. He’ll tweak any of his models to suit the player. The only thing more awesome than his pickups is his customer service.
 

BlueSkyy

Member
Messages
82
I went with Crazy Parts 57’s for my 335 and it’s totally addictive and usable at every position.
I didn’t know anybody who used that brand but they definitely fall into the ‘low wind’ category much like the recommended OX4s.
Gibson 57s can be bland in the bridge.
Rewind makes a 57’ wizz makes the ‘cherryburst’ (57s) but the CrazyParts were bit less money with all premium materials.
BTW Simo also an inspiration here for this purchase. Note-he also had his original PAFs modified so can achieve the out of phase tone by pulling up on his pots. Just stunning tones right there.


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Mpcoluv

Member
Messages
4,311
I’m trying Mojotone 59 clones in mine. Just as soon as I get enough motivation to actually do the work…
The stock Epi IBG pickups are just good enough to not make me in a big hurry.
 

teleking36

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
4,019
Echoing what others have said here. The minute I start to think about non-vintage humbuckers, I start with Wolfe. The Dr. Vintage / Marshallhead MKII combo is killer.
 

guitarded_1

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
1,349
I can say from experience that the Manlius Fat Diane set is simply stunning in a 335. Perhaps the best pickup/guitar pairing I have ever heard. A4, zero mush, ballsy, cutting, bouncy and super expressive. A lot of adjectives I know, but they still blow me away and the price tag is very reasonable.
 
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pb-272

Member
Messages
122
Wolfetone Marshallheads in my 335, with a coil split. I went Marshallheads over Dr Vintage because I want to be able to play Hard Rock tones as well as sweet cleans, so wanted to start with more girth and use volume control to adjust. They work really well!
 

Doublea1269

Member
Messages
442
Thanks for this. I was under the impression that the lower mag made for a clearer tone, but I guess with clarity comes mush. I'll have to rethink this as I was pretty sure I was going to end up with something in the A2 camp!
Be careful with that. I have an Epiphone Dot, same semi-hollow with a layered maple body, and put the Duncan 59 Blues set in it, which are A5s. That particular set also has scooped mids, but I thought the brighter pups might give the guitar an interesting tone.

Well, holy crap were those pups bright! I had to roll way off the tone knobs for it to be decent, and when playing with dirt, I found it awful...shrill, mainly. Bridge was worse than the neck. I was shocked, because Duncan 59s are very highly regarded.

I ended up having my Gibson 57 Classics (A2) moved from my Epi Les Paul to the Dot, my SD Slash set going to the LP from a PRS SE Custom 24, and the 59s going from the Dot to the PRS. Happy to say, it has worked out great...the A2 Gibson's are fantastic in the Dot, as well as in my Epi ES-175, the PRS sounds incredible and well, can't go wrong with Slash pups in an LP!

My research in all of this found that an A5 in a semi-hollow body, particularly if it's maple, is generally going to be over-bright. I'm sure there are exceptions and some may even want mega bright. But the general consensus I found was that A2s are most likely to work.

I ran a post about all of this on the Duncan forum when I was just beginning to figure out what to do, and got a lot of feedback about it, with pickup recommendations and other solutions, like magnet swaps. Might be worth a look at that forum...they have a lot of knowledgeable and helpful people on it.
 

boldaslove1977

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
4,927
Another vote for Thornbuckers. They were specifically designed to be a more articulate PAF. And they do it very well. I put them in a LP and it's a whole new guitar.
 

LBXPDX

Member
Messages
1,440
I recently picked up a lovely Tokai ES-155 (high end MIJ 335 clone) from a member here. It plays wonderfully, but I'm not jiving with the tone. Low strings are mush fest, high strings are bland and the general tone is underwhelming. When I listen to some favorite 335 recordings (mostly old recordings made on old guitars) they are zingy and articulate. JD Simo with his 335 has that tone too (granted, his guitar is vintage with original pickups). I'm not finding anything close with the stock pups-and yes I spent a ton of time adjusting heights, poles, and experimenting with different strings.

For reference, the stock pickups are Gotoh HB-Classics: Alnico 4, wax potted, slightly under wound in the mid/high 7k range. Interestingly, wax potting aside, they seem to be similar in spec to a lot of highly regarded boutique under/low winds.

It came upgraded with 50's wiring (CTS art of Tone 525k pots, PIO caps) so I know that's all good.

My knee jerk is to try some Phat Cats or Filter'Trons, but I have plenty of Gretsch's and I'm hoping I can get this Gibson-a-like to sound more vintage Gibson-like.

So with that: PAF-ish spec, twangy, fast, good note articulation, not too hot. No wax potting. No 12 week wait. No $500 price tag. What humbucker should I be looking for?
On semi hollows, I always adjust the action and the relief first, then I move to the stop tail and adjust it until a barre chord at the 15th and 17th sounds and feels good. There is a sweet spot with the stop tail on semi’s.

I generally set up my semi hollows halfway between a solid body and an acoustic.

Then I plug it in and adjust the pickup height and pole pieces.
 

PosterBoy

Member
Messages
3,264
I upgraded the wiring harness in my Epiphone Dot to a 50s wiring harness and put a Thornbucker in the neck and Thornbucker Plus in the bridge, and it sounds awesome, no muddiness, great clarity. I wouldn't have played the guitar in public before this, now I love playing it out.
 




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