I recently scored myself a Gibson SG faded special for well, let's say the price of a used Epi, and one of the reasons I got is so cheap was the seller claimed there was something wrong with the bridge pup, as it was so much lower output compared to the neck one, he thought it was defective. Well, turns out it was just one of those "490t" issues so many people out there complain about, and nothing technically wrong. Raising it all the way up somewhat cured the issue, but still not fully, and just looked odd. Besides, what the heck, cheap as it was, thought I may as well get something covered in there for better looks, two days later lo and behold both 490's gone the craigslist way, hello another neverending project for me lol.
Anyway, I've now spent a good week reading through this and other fine forums' countless opinions, observed several general trends regarding SG's, so time for questions I guess...
I am a hobbyist who likes to mess with his guitars, so this is for home recording, and not for stage (and no amp, but I plan on getting a nice 5W tube one in the near future), although I do like good tone when I can achieve it. Ideally, classic to hard rock, with nice cleans if possible. I only have two guitars, (the other being a Epi P90 Special) so versatility would be a plus. Oh, and the guitar is 2005, with rosewood, not baked maple, very slim and light.
So, the first candidate, and likely a long shot, just to get it out of the way. I can get a DiMarzio Air Norton for free, and I've read that Nash guitars claims it to be the best bridge pup in SG, go figure. Anyone care to support that opinion? No biggie if not, it's uncovered, so maybe not a perfect choice for the moment at least.
My second consideration was the tried and true JB/Jazz (or 59) combo, but to my surprise, I found many people who seem to know their pups speaking against JB in SG. I don't know too much about matching wood to pickups, but that definitely raised a red flag.
My third option came after reading all those posts and seeing lots and lots of people liking Gibson 57's. Well, I was able to find one of those for pretty cheap, but I am a bit concerned that it may be too low output if I wanted to do hard rock. It is not the plus version, and seeing how much higher the strings are at the bridge on my SG compared to the neck makes me wonder if a hotter pup kept at the normal height would balance better? Also, the seller claims it's the "bridge" version, although there is no specific designation on the pup. Should I just get it and if I find it not powerful enough, move it to the neck position and get the Plus version (or even something entirely different) for the bridge?
Finally, keeping my options completely open, listening to the clips of various SD's, I seem to like the sound of the Seth Lover bridge and Jazz neck best. Does that even make sense as a combo? Especially in SG? What would be your recommendations?
Thanks in advance and sorry for the long post. Just thought to give as much info as possible up front...