Seymour Duncan Zephyr™
The Next Great Sound of Guitar
Introducing Seymour Duncan Zephyr—a continuing series of products focused on defining what's next for guitar, unbound from what was.
Zephyr is "the west wind." For Americans, west represents what's next. The trends that will make life better, more enjoyable, more interesting, lie over the western horizon. It's also from where we expect innovations that give us what's new and best. The great Zephyr trains symbolized accessible luxury for traveling North America, opening a vast opportunity landscape to restless people no longer willing to be left behind. That's us—restless to create the next great sounds for guitar, relentlessly working to make expressive tone affordable, but willing to accept that sometimes what's next costs more.
Zephyr products make new sounds we like. They're different. They represent our view of what's next for guitar. They are premium offerings made only for people who want them, whether that's five or five thousand. If you like what we like, we believe you will absolutely love our first Zephyr products: Zephyr Silver Pickups.
Seymour Duncan Zephyr™ Silver Pickups give you everything you love about electric guitar, but more. Richer tone, more explosive dynamics, more responsive touch, a deliciously dense but wide-open sound.
Zephyr Silver pickups combine four distinct innovations unbound from pickup tradition:
- Silver Wire Coils — Known as "The Great Conductor" among metals, silver and silver-plated wire's sonic excellence is well established in high fidelity audio applications, including moving coil phono cartridges, vacuum tube amplifier output transformers and cabling. Just as silver in audio makes music reproduction more convincing and alive, in pickup coils it gives your guitar punchier, jumpier, burstier feel with harmonically dense, dripping tone.
- Nickel and Stainless Steel Bi-Metallic Pole Pieces — Combining these two premier transformer metals to shape and focus the magnetic field disturbed by your guitar's vibrating strings further contributes to the vivid, energetic sound of Zephyr Silver.
- Glass Fiberfill Nylon Bobbin — Every dialectric material imparts its own sonic properties. In listening tests of new, more stable bobbin materials, we chose glass-filled nylon for slight advantages in definition and detail, as well as excellent material stability and consistent finish.
- Cryogenic Treatment — Supercooling materials renders permanent improvement to their grain structure. Also an established enhancement in high-end audio, where cable, vacuum tubes and even entire electronic components are cryogenically treated for improvements in clarity and realism, we achieved similar results for guitar tone by cryogenically treating completed pickups, copper and silver alike. Cryo treatment enhances string definition and boosts the "way huge" potential of your guitar.
Each of these options is now available with any Custom Shop order, but in combination they lend our new premium Zephyr Silver pickups uniquely fast transients, wider but smooth frequency response, deeply rich harmonics, and unprecedented midrange tone density, with audible gains in string detail, articulation and overall definition. Slighter touch produces expressive sound, yet peak dynamics are more explosive, making your guitar feel more energetic and alive. We consider Zephyr Silver the most expressive pickups so far. They are not inexpensive, but from squeaky clean to buzzsaw grind, you'll hear and feel more power, projection and expression from any electric guitar.
Zephyr Silver Humbuckers
Zephyr Silver Stratocaster® Pickups
Zephyr Silver Telecaster® Pickups
Single Tele® Lead: $549
Single Tele® Rhythm: $449
Zephyr Silver Technical Summary
Pure Silver Magnet WireLowest resistance of any metal known, 5.36% lower than copper
- Lower losses throughout the frequency spectrum, especially in the higher ranges
- Allows more controlled and repeatable winding
- Less prone to breakage, more reliable
- In un-potted pickups, lower microphonic levels
More compatible with lead-free, high silver content solders
- Lower losses at metal transition points
Composite, Bi-Metallic Pole PiecesCombines a 440C Stainless steel with pure nickel core
- High chromium content stainless
- Superior magnetic properties, higher saturation level. Extends dynamic range on the large signal end
- Attractive and corrosion resistant without requiring plating
- Pure nickel core
- Flat hysteresis loop of nickel gives high sensitivity to small signals with the ability to subtle changes.
Senses and translates nuance better. Extends dynamic range on small signals
Cryogenic Treatment of Pickup after final assemblyPermanently aligns crystal lattice of all materials and removes stresses introduced during manufacturing of raw materials and winding and final assembly of pickup
- Normalizes internal structure of the magnet(s) for more consistent gauss strength across all strings and from unit to unit
- Aligns internal structure of the magnet wire, further reducing losses and increasing efficiency of pickup
Glass Filled Nylon BobbinsNylon is a low Q material
- Less prone to microphonics, especially in un-potted pickups
- Will not color the sound with "ringing" like cheaper plastics
- No "end flaring". Coil structure remains consistent, layer to layer. Minimizes high frequency losses and maintains balanced frequency response
- Tough and stable. Will take a beating without damage