First the gear:
1977 Marshall 2204 master volume superlead.
4x12 marshall cab
HSS bastard caster strat 500k vol/tone pots.
I'm having a hard time achieving just the tone that I want from the bridge HB. I guess the tone I'm looking for is close to a JB in a LP but a little more open and not as nasal. I guess somewhere between HB chunk and the grind of a P90.
I've tried a custom custom, and I loved the lead tone and dirty chords, but found that it way too compressed and was more "felt" than heard in the mix with more gain. Raising the pickup was not enough to bring it out more. It lacked bass to kick the lowend and the top end was too rounded off.
I've tried a JB and it sounded so thin and weak. There was no low end and no high end. Sounded like the amp had the bass completely cut off with a blanket over the speakers and sounded muffled.
I've tried a 59 and it was really scooped with the treble ear piercing and the bass sharp but not full. I ripped it out after just 2 hours.
It currently has APH HB. I love the dirt from the A2 magnet, but the APH seems extra crispy sounding and fizzy. The low end is a little sharp, not as bad as the 59, a little fuller, but a little higher on the register. I have to roll the top end a bit with the tone pot to get where I like it and to remove the crispy high end fizz, but then the low end is more pronounced and the sweet mids and top end gets a little lost. If only the upper mids were boosted a bit and not as fizzy.
I've tried to get away from high output humbuckers, but it seems like my next logical choice is perhaps the custom pickup.
What do you guys think?