StewMac Pickups

gmann

Member
Messages
8,639
Specifically the Parson Street, Golden Age humbuckers. Lots of discussions here about boutique pups but has anybody tried these? Very inexpensive at around $63.00 give or take. Available with Alnico ll or lV magnets. They make them in various ohms ratings, anybody have any experience with them?
 

gkoelling

Member
Messages
17,175
I looked at those last year and emailed asking the country of origin, China. I wasn't interested in replacing Korean pickups with Chinese pickups.
 

Da Geezer

Member
Messages
5,040
I have a pair of Parson Street A2's in a 339

Ok, but for a few bucks more you can get a LOT better.

I didn't find out about the offshore built until after I received them (the video they had up made it sound like they were building them right there at the Stew Mac shop)....when I went to return them, they tried to hit me with a 25% restock, so just kept them.

GFS are made by same mfg at about half the price.

G
 

HipKitty

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
2,656
Artecsound builds them. Same company that builds the GFS and Cali pickups...among others. They do have a website. For years they were manufacturing out of South Korea. They have a listing in China now so who knows.

With that, I tried an Alnico II set in one of the shop Les Pauls. I posted in TGP on a thread. They are impressive for the price. Much better than the GFS Alnico II offerings. Would they knock out a Duncan Antiquity or Dimarzio 36th Anniversary? Nope. That set is in a parts drawer these days.
 

gmann

Member
Messages
8,639
Well, I didn't buy them yet and based on these replies I don't imagine I will. Thanks for the feedback.
 

CubanB

Member
Messages
2,148
I looked at those last year and emailed asking the country of origin, China. I wasn't interested in replacing Korean pickups with Chinese pickups.
You're judging criteria for gear is wrong IMO. I can see if someone is a noob, they'll read and believe anything on the internet.. but you hope that over time one can look beyond that.

A Chinese pickup made to my spec would blow away a USA pickup made to someone else's (for MY needs). Forget about the country for a second.. it's magnets, pickup wire, bobbins etc. I can understand more when it's a complete guitar or amp, because it's a complete system.. but even then it's usually the design you're paying for. For example MIA strats are a different spec than MIM strats even if they both had flawless quality.

If I wound my own pickups, (and I may one day, as I do a lot of other custom stuff).. I could wind them here.. then they are hand wound Australian pickups. I could move to Thailand, then they are hand wound Thailand pickups, then I could move to London.. then they are hand wound British pickups, or I could move to LA.. then they are MIA hand wound pickups. In each situation the pickups are the same.

It was also funny to me, that you compared them to Korea.. not USA.

There's a general hierarchy in guitar stuff of..

MIA
MIJ
MIM
MIK
MIC
MII (Indonesia)

But it's very generalised thing, and it depends on the design and spec first of all.. and then.. the materials used. For example there's plenty of those lower ranked places where the high end models will come with high end USA parts.

Pickups are such a specific thing that it's the worst thing to compare with. The materials and spec are everything, they don't care where they were assembled. It's not like the countries air imparted some tone and mojo into the winding. It's usually simpler just to go with MIA pickups, since they aren't that expensive compared to other gear parts.. and they control so much of the sound. And you know what you are getting, but there's plenty of pickups I wouldn't want to touch regardless of where they are made. Too hot, too thin, too fat.. etc etc. To me, the spec and materials are everything and pickups are quite simple to make. There's the last 5% with cork sniffing and mojo etc.. but the core sound of them is simply a good design spec that suits your needs.
 
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B Money

Member
Messages
5,891
^^ well, now you're just making sense, but how are we to suppress the Chinese takeover if we don't blindly boycott everything they make.
 

gkoelling

Member
Messages
17,175
@CubanB

The comparison between Korea and China was made because the pickups I had an interest in replacing are Korean, sorry I didn't make that clear. Also, the majority of upgrades done on imported guitars involves the electronics, including pickups. I didn't want to put money and time into a guitar only to be right back where I started.
 

Crowder

Dang Twangler
Messages
19,078
The first few minutes of this video are me playing a Sheraton that has the Golden Age PAF's with a vintage-style wiring harness. I think they're solid. They may not be as subtle as some, and their overall personality is middle-of-the-road, but then again, that's sort of what the original PAF's were like.

There are maybe five components in any pickup, and the general sound is probably shaped 80% by magnet type and the number of windings on the bobbins. Whether the bobbins are phenolic or plastic, or whether the wire is a little finer, or whether the magnets have been degaussed....all that stuff combined probably makes up the other 20%.

 

MKB

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
8,376
A friend installed a Parsons St humbucker set in a Epi Casino, they were OK but didn't really capture my attention. They weren't bad but were not exceptional in tone IMHO. They did appear to be high quality and well made with the visible materials appearing correct (as opposed to stuff like DiMarzio's brass back plates).

IMHO most of StewMac's offerings are overpriced to one degree or another. But their stuff is high quality and I use their products often as they are convenient to order and their products are well documented on their web site.
 

hdspringer98

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
251
I have a Parson Street hot 9.0k A2 in the bridge of a Chibson I gutted. I like it a lot and the Chibson was a great fit for it. I also have the standard A5 in another guitar and I don't like it as much as the hot A2, it's bland. For the money the Hot version in A2 is a good deal IMO.
 

DRS

Member
Messages
11,744
In all fairness, the SDs with nickel covers are about $95. so that's $60 for a pair. Enough of a difference for some on a budget. personally, I'd save up for the Sds.
 




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