Virgil Arlo pickups

Discussion in 'Guitars in General' started by rburkard, Jul 12, 2016.

  1. rburkard

    rburkard Gold Supporting Member

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    So, I was interested in the Virgil Arlo pickups and ordered three sets. One Tele, one Strat and one humbucker set. All I can say is:"Whoah!" Easily the best vintage style pickups I have ever used, and I fooled around with many. The Strat set in a Custom Shop 57 replica compares favorably to my original 65 Strat. Dynamic response, very even balance, clear and no icepick. The Tele set performs the same way in this typical vintage Broadcaster style. The humbuckers are what I crave the most, probably because I am a Les Paul kind of guy. Put them in a 59 Gibson True Historic. The original Custom Buckers are really nice pickups already, the Arlos however open up a whole new layer of additional vintage flavor. Compared to a set of Tom Holmes, they have a lot in common. Both have this outstanding complexity and sound truly like a great set of original vintage P.A.Fs. Both pickups represent a slightly different flavor however, like you will find in almost all originals. While the Tom Holmes strike me as a tad more elegant, like dressed up in a Tuxedo, while the Arlos sound a little bit more raw in a good way. Both sets showcase exceptional clarity with outstanding picking dynamics and singing harmonics and prevail in this very rare oxymoron of being warm and clear at the same time. Difficult to describe, but you feel it right away on your fingertips. Both sets are really organic, meaty and musical. Real gems. I am leaning a tad more towards the Arlos for their more raw sounding character. The only other brand which could hang with them in proximity is one set of Scatterbranes I own, but they have less clarity and balls, but are very sweet too.
     
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  2. Mpcoluv

    Mpcoluv Supporting Member

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    So three sets, huh? Cost you, what, $1500?
     
  3. rburkard

    rburkard Gold Supporting Member

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    Well, just as much.
     
  4. amphead777

    amphead777 Member

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    I wonder how they compare to Throbaks, and other "SUPER PAF's" like Doyle Coils, Ron Ellis, and OTPG?
     
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2016
  5. rburkard

    rburkard Gold Supporting Member

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    Had two sets of Throbaks the I sold shortly after I got them. They didn't strike me as being very special and were not that close to some old PAFs that I owned. Not in the same league as Tom Holmes or Virgil Arlo.
     
    Last edited: Jul 13, 2016
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  6. slowerhand

    slowerhand Member

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    Thanks for the review. I've got a strat set on order myself. After experiencing the difference a real 1956 set made in an already nice Strat, and what Allen Hinds said in his video, I want to try these. Good thing I'm covered for humbuckers and I'm not a tele guy. :)
     
    Last edited: Jul 13, 2016

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