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Thread: Pickup suggestions for my new used SG

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    Member G3ordy's Avatar
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    Default Pickup suggestions for my new used SG

    I just scored this Gibson SG Supreme on eBay, but it didn't have the stock pups ('57 Classics) in it. It came with some Kent Armstrong humbucker-sized P-90s. I'm debating between getting some '57 Classics and taking it back to stock, leaving it alone, or dropping some others in it.

    As for the style of music I play, I like to play rock, bluesy rock and some metal. I like to be able to play heavy and raunchy out of the bridge pup, but I'd also like play some gritty blues riffs without getting too muddy. Would also like a smooth, but gritty neck pup for some smooth and sassy blues riffs.

    I currently have access to a JB, a '59 neck, a 500T and an SD Custom Shop El Diablo. I've never played through the '57s before, but I've heard good things. I initially bought the 500T for my LP Custom, but I may end up selling it. Not sure yet.

    Suggestions, anyone?
    -LB

    2012 Gibson SG Standard - 2013 Model (Heritage Cherry)
    2008 Gibson Slash Signature Les Paul Standard (Vintage Burst)

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    Mojo's Minions blueman335's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pickup suggestions for my new used SG

    '57 Classics aren't one of the great PAF's. If you want to go that route, a pair of numbered Burstbuckers would be better, and Duncan's would be even better still, like Seth's, '59's, PG's, or A2P's.

    Probably the most popular bridge PU here for an SG is a C8 (one of the Customs with an A8 magnet). That combined with a PGN would be an excellent choice. You'd get a bridge with warmth and muscle, that sounds great clean or with gain, and a smooth PAF vibe in the neck.
    "Completely Conceded Glowing Expert."
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    Mojo's Minions GuitarDoc's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pickup suggestions for my new used SG

    I'd play it with those P-90s for awhile and see how you like it. IMO, SGs and P-90s are a perfect combination...a bit more bite and clarity than buckers, meatier than singles. The Classic '57s are pretty good pups in an SG, can tend to get muddy in an LP. (I actually have a 57 in one of my LPs and really like it's smooth tone, however).

    If you find that you can't get along with those Armstrongs, then my next best suggestion would be what Blueman already suggested. I love the Custom 8 in an SG bridge and a Pearly Gates or a Screamin Demon in the neck.
    Originally Posted by IanBallard
    Rule of thumb... the more pot you have, the better your tone.

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    Toneologist elelpe's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pickup suggestions for my new used SG


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    Ultimate Tone Slacker jtougas's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pickup suggestions for my new used SG

    While a proponent of the way of the P-90, I can also vouch for a pair of Pearly Gates...
    "Screw regulations. Bring the noise."

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    Ultimate Tone Slacker Mr. B's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pickup suggestions for my new used SG

    I agree with Michelle.

    The set I have settled on in my SG Standard would also work well for what you are describing. I use the 59n and leave the Gibson 498t bridge. I've tried a dozen other combinations, but this is the one I keep coming back to. I like the 498t. It is a good mid-output bridge humbucker for rock, and the 59n is perfect in an SG's neck position.

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    Mojo's Minions blueman335's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pickup suggestions for my new used SG

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. B View Post
    I agree with Michelle.

    The set I have settled on in my SG Standard would also work well for what you are describing. I use the 59n and leave the Gibson 498t bridge. I've tried a dozen other combinations, but this is the one I keep coming back to. I like the 498t. It is a good mid-output bridge humbucker for rock, and the 59n is perfect in an SG's neck position.
    And to build on that...an A8 in the 498T, paired with a '59N.
    "Completely Conceded Glowing Expert."
    "And Blueman, I am pretty sure you've pissed off a lot of people."
    "Wait, I know! Blueman and Lew can arm wrestle, and the winner gets to decide if 250K pots sound good or not."

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    Default Re: Pickup suggestions for my new used SG

    Some PU's that sound like @$$ thru other guitars sound pretty darn good in an SG. Case in point - Classic '57 N and '57 Plus B are a great and versatile choice. Burstbuckers are too thin and shrill in an SG IMO. I like PG's in most guitars, Virtual PAF's also.
    I lika do da cha cha...

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    Default Re: Pickup suggestions for my new used SG

    It would be nice getting a Custom, as you can experiment with Custom 5, Custom UOA5 and Custom 8. But, the guy listed some pickups that he have access too (probably without having to pay), so I'll start with those.

    I'm no expert like blueman335 and GuitarDoc, but here's my suggestions (you 2 can help me if that's a bad idea):

    - 59n and a 500T bridge with an A8
    - 59n and the El Diablo
    - 59n and the JB with an a2
    - 59n and the p90 bridge
    - p90n and any of the other bridge pickups

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    Digitally Challenged Mr 9finger's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pickup suggestions for my new used SG

    I'll be the lone ranger here and toss a vote for the Diablo. Drop that ***** in and get your Iommi on!
    Gear: More junk than I know what to do with

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    Default Re: Pickup suggestions for my new used SG

    I've had the Diablo in my SG, along with a ton of other stuff. After two years I finally found what's staying in mine forever over the weekend.


    A2 Brobucker.
    HAIL HYDRA

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    Default Re: Pickup suggestions for my new used SG

    Quote Originally Posted by blueman335 View Post
    And to build on that...an A8 in the 498T, paired with a '59N.
    You know, I've tried the A8 in several pickups (C8, JB8, Demon8), and I just don't jive with it. It is too aggressive and in-your-face tonally. I've even gone back and tried it again (in the Custom) just to make sure it wasn't the individual guitars I tried it in.

    On the other hand, I do like the UOA5 custom, and have thought about trying that magnet in the Demon and 498t.

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    Senior Member Big Mike Blues's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pickup suggestions for my new used SG

    Does the supreme have the maple top?

    IN a solid mahog guitar I love the venerable JB/59 combo.
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    Default Re: Pickup suggestions for my new used SG

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. B View Post
    You know, I've tried the A8 in several pickups (C8, JB8, Demon8), and I just don't jive with it. It is too aggressive and in-your-face tonally. I've even gone back and tried it again (in the Custom) just to make sure it wasn't the individual guitars I tried it in.

    On the other hand, I do like the UOA5 custom, and have thought about trying that magnet in the Demon and 498t.
    That is my opinion about the Custom 8 too. But, if the guy plays metal, it might work. I've done experiments in my SG with the C5, UOC5 (roughcast) and C8. Describing the sound with words:

    If you get the guitar and struck an A chord under moderate gain:

    The C8 will sound something like: PAWN
    The UOC5, something like: ouawn
    The C5 will sound something like: Puoawn

    Oh my.. After that post, I think I started to doubt my mental health

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    Member G3ordy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pickup suggestions for my new used SG

    Thanks for your responses! Yes, it does in fact have a maple top. I wouldn't say that I would be playing more metal as much as I would the bluesy rock stuff. I was thinking that the Diablo might be a bit aggressive, but then again, I've never even installed it in anything yet. I thought of dropping the Diablo into a Les Paul instead, but I'm still undecided. I'd really just like to get the SG set up first, then go from there.
    -LB

    2012 Gibson SG Standard - 2013 Model (Heritage Cherry)
    2008 Gibson Slash Signature Les Paul Standard (Vintage Burst)

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    Mojo's Minions blueman335's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pickup suggestions for my new used SG

    Quote Originally Posted by symptom View Post
    That is my opinion about the Custom 8 too. But, if the guy plays metal, it might work.
    I play blues and classic rock, and C8's and A8 498T's work fine for that.
    "Completely Conceded Glowing Expert."
    "And Blueman, I am pretty sure you've pissed off a lot of people."
    "Wait, I know! Blueman and Lew can arm wrestle, and the winner gets to decide if 250K pots sound good or not."

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    Default Re: Pickup suggestions for my new used SG

    Quote Originally Posted by blueman335 View Post
    I play blues and classic rock, and C8's and A8 498T's work fine for that.
    Don't get me wrong. I like the pickup. I just think it's too powerful. =)

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    Mojo's Minions GuitarDoc's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pickup suggestions for my new used SG

    Quote Originally Posted by King IzzO))) View Post
    After two years I finally found what's staying in mine forever over the weekend.
    That's a sig worthy quote!
    Originally Posted by IanBallard
    Rule of thumb... the more pot you have, the better your tone.

  19. #19
    Mojo's Minions blueman335's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pickup suggestions for my new used SG

    Quote Originally Posted by symptom View Post
    Don't get me wrong. I like the pickup. I just think it's too powerful. =)
    You can lower the PU a little and reduce the output.
    "Completely Conceded Glowing Expert."
    "And Blueman, I am pretty sure you've pissed off a lot of people."
    "Wait, I know! Blueman and Lew can arm wrestle, and the winner gets to decide if 250K pots sound good or not."

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