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Pickups For Vintage Gibson Guitars

Discussion in 'Effects, Pedals, Strings & Things' started by anoxia01, Aug 15, 2005.

  1. anoxia01

    anoxia01 Member

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    I own a Walnut 79’ Gibson SG. The guitar is mildly noisy for a guitar with humbuckers, and is very dark sounding. I’m looking to swap out the original pickups with some that are less noisy and brighter than the originals.

    I also have a White 80’ Gibson Firebird that has been routed for humbuckers (done by the owner before me). This guitar has EMG 81’s which I’m sick of. I’m looking for a pickup that will give me a similar sound to the SG.

    Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

    Andy
     
  2. avenerjimmie

    avenerjimmie Member

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    My SG has Classic '57s and I like them a whole stinking lot. It's mahogany though. I'm throwing a Custom 5 and a Duncan '59 in my '77 Aria Les Paul copy tomorrow. I'll let you know how that goes. Otherwise, I'm basically no help at all.
     
  3. Lex Luthier

    Lex Luthier Member

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    You might want to check the value of the pots on the SG, there may be 350k pots in it which choke the highs. Replacing them with 500k will make a big difference.
     
  4. eric-d

    eric-d Member

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    Yeah, for an SG, you can't go wrong with Classic 57's and 500K pots....
     
  5. Chiba

    Chiba Gold Supporting Member

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    I'd go with 57 Classics or Seymour Duncan 59 pickups (they sound very similar to my ears).

    Also, if it were me doing the swap, I'd just pull the existing harnesses and replace everything from pickups to jacks. No telling what could be making it sound dark/muddy - and if you swap the pickups and that doesn't fix the problem, you'll just be irritated :)

    White Firebird, eh? I think you should post some pictures of that bad boy!! I'm a recent convert to Firebirds.

    --chiba
     
  6. drbob1

    drbob1 Silver Supporting Member

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    To my ears, the best inexpensive PAF copy that gets close is the Duncan Seth Lover-you can often find them for ~$75 on Harmony Central. They hold up well compared to high buck copies (you can spend $1k for a pair of humbuckers), and sound pretty good next to real PAFs.
     
  7. erksin

    erksin Member

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  8. el34power

    el34power Member

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  9. HEY!YOU!

    HEY!YOU! Senior Member

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    Just curious...is '79-80 considered vintage now?
     
  10. erksin

    erksin Member

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    No offense, but that model SG will never fetch any real money - sounds like it's a player and he's trying to get the best tones he can out of it. If he thinks the pups are dogs (sorry, pun intended) selling them and using the cash for something better suited to his tastes makes a lot of sense to me...

    I saw mention of the pots - they should be 300K pots in there. If you'd like to still give the Dirty Fingers a chance, swap those out for 500Ks - you should get more highs out of them.
     
  11. anoxia01

    anoxia01 Member

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    Thank you guys so much for all your input. I've finally come to a decision. I’m going to change out my 300k pots for some 500ks, and go with the Classic 57’s. It might not be for a little while because I just got a Hiwatt Custom 50. I’ll let you guys know how it comes out when I get enough cash.

    Thanks again,
    Andy
     
  12. OOG

    OOG Member

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  13. Cary Chilton

    Cary Chilton Senior Member

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    I agree with EL34, don't sell the pups, store them- people who buy vintage guitars want and have the right to the guitars originals form.

    I disagree with the 57 classic by gibson, I do not feel they are the best. IMO they are compressed, a little muddy on the 6 string. They aren't open sounding at all, lack that real LIVE sound.

    IMO I would only buy the seymour antiquity humbuckers. Made on a genuine antique bobbin winder, high grade wire, etc. There is a reason, why many customers with high end les pauls such as the jimmy page signature series ripped those pup out, and install these seymour antiquity. Not too mention 90 % of everyone I have asked on Ebay selling Gibson's burstbuckers 1,2, 3 or BB pro have resonded that they install seymour antiquity pups. They aren't cheap, 120 USD and up, but they ARE worth every dang penny!

    peace
     

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