Pickups for ES-335.....low gain humbuckers......


I have it down to 3 options.....

a) Lollar low wind Imperials....
b) Fralin pure PAF
c) Mojotone 59 paf clones....alnico 4 7-7.8k///

Which one should I use and why?

I have used Fralin in Les Paul and love them but 335 are slightly different....

Tell me about your experience and why they worked for you......Thanks!!!

I have interest in the mojotone 59 paf clones....alnico 4, priced right..... what is your experience with those too.......


Of those choices I'd go with Lindy's PAF Pure.

I prefer Alnico 2 pickups because they seem to respond to my picking and I can shape my sound more easily with my hands.

The bass response also seems to be more manageable and sounds less muddy.

Lindy will wind them to whatever strength you want.

Call him.

And use 500k volume and tone pots.

The 50's mod to the tone controls works well on my 335 with A2 pickups.


Gold Supporting Member
If you use low/medium gain and volumes, unpotted pickups can help bring a tad more mojo out of an ES. Probably most any well made, low wind, unpotted nickel cover bucker will sound pretty good at least in an ES. I've found hotter pickups can get muddy fast in a 335.


Silver Supporting Member
I almost bought low wind imperials for my RR 335, but ended up taking a chance on a pair of ReWind VLO's that I snagged here on the emporium. I absolutely love them! Clarity in the neck that I yearned for, beautiful middle position tones that reminded me of the chime and twang of a 6120 or something, and excellent bridge tones that weren't harsh or without character. The guitar still rocks with little to no effort, but absolutely plays better across the tonal spectrum of clean to medium gain, where I live 99% of the time. I also like that tonally it's not a major departure from my tele, but has enough oomph to take things a little farther than the tele is sometimes capable of.

I never really took the time to figure out which magnet type I liked (another rabbit hole I didn't want to go down), so I just researched the specs before purchasing, and they seemed to fit what I was looking for. I feel like I kind of lucked out, because I hadn't heard of ReWind before finding these pickups.


Supporting Member
I love Fralin's Pure PAFs. I have them in my Les Paul Custom and they suits the guitar perfectly. In my ES-335, however, I like running Seth Lovers. I've been curious about how the Fralins would sound in the ES, but I am not ready to rip out Seths just for kick and giggles. It was tough enough the first time I replacing them.


Anything Alnico IV in and around the ~7.0 (neck) to ~7.5 (bridge) range should do you just fine. I went on a similar search last year and eventually settled on low-wind OX4s. Absolutely stunning, and exactly what I was looking for.


In the early 60s Gibson standardized the humbuckers with a short A5 magnet and ca 7.5k winding. I tend to prefer pickups with similar specs for a classical ES335/345 sound


+1 on alnico IV

I have a set of SD Seth Lovers in one Les Paul and a set of BKP Mules in another. The Mules are tonally extremely similar to the Seth Lovers but the alnico IV magnets get rid of the wooly/wooly/flubby character that the alnico II magnets exhibit under certain circumstances.

Semi-hollow/hollow bodied guitars tend to add a degree of "air" to the sound so something with more clarity might do well.

IMO, I'm not a big fan of the Lollars. I find that they're a little "lifeless" compared to other PAF style pickups, but that's just a personal thing.


Gold Supporting Member
I have a set of mojotone a4 low wind/high wind in a byrdland, of all things. not much of a comparison, but since so few people give them a shot, i'll chime in.

i like them. a lot. they are clear with some chime but its easy to dial in the warmth if need be. i initially thought the bridge was a little bright/hot for that guitar, but im coming around to it, and it sounds very much like a byrdland should.

i've used their a3's with success as well. they offer helpful advice if you aren't sure which way to go, and with the high wind/low wind, wax/no wax and magnet choices, you have a lot of ways to tailor that basic paf template. recommended.


Do you have any clips of your 335 with the Thornbuckers?
I do not. I will also add that my 335 is a wrap tail rather than the common two piece bridge. I notice it is a bit more resonant and brighter than the others I have played (many). Not necessarily better or worse, simply different. I am very happy with the Thornbuckers. They roll off great, break up great if needed and are smooth without being too smooth. Punchy without being harsh. Warm without losing definition and articulation. They do everything good. Possibly one of the most versatile pickups I have ever tried. I am incredibly happy with them.


All things with a Maple Cap
What are the DC resistance readings in the Thornbuckers? I'm mostly interested in low gain humbuckers.
They are rated: 7.3k Neck & 8.4k Bridge. Suhr just released the TB+ which is a hotter neck and bridge. Love the TB.

I also really enjoy Ron Ellis PAF style pickups. Expensive, but damn do they sound killer. Lollar Imperial low winds sound great as well and complement the Barenuckle's that I have in another guitar very well.

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