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Thread: JB alternative for mahogany guitar

  1. #21
    I poop in my KISS diapers Aceman's Avatar
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    Default Re: JB alternative for mahogany guitar

    I was gonna say for cheap and easy, try an A8 mag in the JB

    Otherwise I like the Demon suggestion....
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  2. #22
    Member GrabtharsHammer's Avatar
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    Default Re: JB alternative for mahogany guitar

    Oh well, I have to admit that I really am a little bit disappointed with the C5. I thought it could be the ideal pickup for me, but its low end is too vintage/wooly sounding for my style of playing. I love to have a very tight low end with a pronounced, aggressive and fast pick attack for palm mutes, but I also still want to be able to play sweet and fluid sounding leads.

    To put it this way... I am looking for a pickup that is suitable for both, tight and "industrial" rhythm guitar la Fear Factory and also weeping and wailing lead guitar la Paradise Lost. Perhaps this is a task no pickup on earth can fulfill. ;-)

    Right now I am considering three more options:
    1. Duncan Distortion (low end should be ideal, and it is said to have a vocal midrange quite similar to the JB. So far so good, but I am a little bit concerned about an ear-piercing high end and lacking versatility.)
    2. Bare Knuckle ceramic Nailbomb (Was recommended to me by Tim from BKP. But I have read some posts that indicate the NB is actually not really that tight.)
    3. Go full-on active with an EMG 81 in the bridge and a P60 in the neck position (I love the 81's focussed sound, but as far as I remember I found string separation to be unsatisfactory when playing chords. And I haven't yet found a shop here in Germany that lists the P60.)
    Last edited by GrabtharsHammer; 08-18-2019 at 01:18 AM.

  3. #23
    HardtailPisser ibanezrocks's Avatar
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    Default Re: JB alternative for mahogany guitar

    If you're worried about the Distortion's high-end, you shouldn't even consider the 81 IMO. They both can have somewhat sterile ceramic treble but the Distortion backs it up with a relatively full EQ compared to the drastic bass and low-mid cut of the 81.

    Compared to the Custom, the Distortion is tighter, more compressed and has more aggressive mids. It's not in a completely different ballpark though.

    Keep in mind some high-end sizzle is required for a pickup to sound aggressive. Also tight response usually means less bass, more treble and more compression (the pick attack is higher frequencies, even if you're playing in drop A).

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  4. #24
    I poop in my KISS diapers Aceman's Avatar
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    Default Re: JB alternative for mahogany guitar

    Unless you are really gonna work the tone knob, or are willing to switch to the neck, I don't think you are gonna find what you want - at least to my knowledge.
    Quote Originally Posted by Bad City
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  5. #25
    Member GrabtharsHammer's Avatar
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    Default Re: JB alternative for mahogany guitar

    Guys, I think I just found the problem with the Custom 5 in my Yamaha... I checked the electronics and found out that the tone knob is 250k. On my JB equipped Framus I have a 500k tone knob and I even bypassed it to get a brighter, snappier sound. No wonder the C5 in the Yamaha sounded dull, wooly and weak in comparison!

  6. #26
    Administrator Mincer's Avatar
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    Default Re: JB alternative for mahogany guitar

    Let us know what it sounds like when you swap/bypass it.
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  7. #27
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    Default Re: JB alternative for mahogany guitar

    Bypass it and start from there. Just a wire snip. This reminds me to do this to mine. I think I have stock electronics that are just mehhhhhhhh. I’ll be so pissed if my tone chasing with my sentient and Pegasus is down to the low end pots and cap leeching the tone.

  8. #28
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    Default Re: JB alternative for mahogany guitar

    Quote Originally Posted by Bowtomecha View Post
    Bypass it and start from there. Just a wire snip. This reminds me to do this to mine. I think I have stock electronics that are just mehhhhhhhh. Ill be so pissed if my tone chasing with my sentient and Pegasus is down to the low end pots and cap leeching the tone.
    It will be a couple of weeks before the luthier has time for me. Perhaps someone could help me here. Do I just have to snip the red and white wires coming from the Custom 5 off the push/pull tone pot?

  9. #29
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    Default Re: JB alternative for mahogany guitar

    Name:  548F89BD-841D-4279-88B2-339C6AFEDBBB.jpg
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Size:  42.6 KB the tone pot is at the bottom of this diagram. Just disconnect the wire at the tone pot lug coming from the volume pot and wrap the end with some tape. Not the ground wire on the back of the pot though because the tone pot could still be grounded through contact with any cavity shielding.

  10. #30
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    Default Re: JB alternative for mahogany guitar

    There all different ways that people wire things but the tone pot is usually connected either to the volume pot or the switch. Either way, just disconnect the wire on the middle lug of the tone pot and insulate the wire end with a piece of tape so the signal doesn’t short to ground on anything. It should be brighter sounding afterwards.

  11. #31
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    Default Re: JB alternative for mahogany guitar



    This is the wiring diagram that should apply to my Pacifica (apart from the single coil being a P90). Before I do anything wrong... Did I understand it right that I just have to snip the wire between the volume and the tone pot to bypass the tone pot and still be able to use the pot's push/pull for coil splitting?

  12. #32
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    Default Re: JB alternative for mahogany guitar

    Yeah it’s a bit different in that diagram but yes the lead coming lug of the volume pot to the lug on the tone pot is the one. Just cut it at the tone pot and tape the lead end. Keep any ground wires connected though. If you’re using a push pull pot, it shorts the pickup leads to ground, splitting the coil. Your tone push pull pot will be grounded either by a wire between the metal backs of the pots or by the contact of the tone and volume pots with any shielding paint or foil inside guitar.

  13. #33
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    Default Re: JB alternative for mahogany guitar

    Okay, cutting off the wire between the tone and the volume pot worked to bypass the tone control. Thanks for your help with this!

    And bypassing the tone pot definitely helped to bring up the high mids a bit. However... I still don't like the way the low end sounds with this pickup. Still kinda mushy, wooly and undefined. Not at all what I was hoping or expecting. I guess the Custom 5 has to go. Currently torn between the Duncan Distortion and an EMG 81/P60 combo. Leaning towards the EMGs though. I grew up with that sound and perhaps I finally have to admit that this is exactly what I want. Or - new idea - perhaps I could give the Black Winter a try?!
    Last edited by GrabtharsHammer; 08-19-2019 at 12:18 PM.

  14. #34
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    Default Re: JB alternative for mahogany guitar

    Are you still within the return period? If not, you might as well tinker with a magnet swap or polepieces.

  15. #35
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    Default Re: JB alternative for mahogany guitar

    Quote Originally Posted by GrabtharsHammer View Post
    Okay, cutting off the wire between the tone and the volume pot worked to bypass the tone control. Thanks for your help with this!

    And bypassing the tone pot definitely helped to bring up the high mids a bit. However... I still don't like the way the low end sounds with this pickup. Still kinda mushy, wooly and undefined. Not at all what I was hoping or expecting. I guess the Custom 5 has to go. Currently torn between the Duncan Distortion and an EMG 81/P60 combo. Leaning towards the EMGs though. I grew up with that sound and perhaps I finally have to admit that this is exactly what I want. Or - new idea - perhaps I could give the Black Winter a try?!
    I have guitars with the Distortion set and an EMG 81/60 set currently. Unless you're spending all your time playing in a full mix with a lot of gain or effects, the 81 is painfully thin and bright. It's the least versatile pickup I've ever used by far. The bass is tight because it's not there. The Distortion sounds absolutely massive in comparison and it's still a very tight pickup.

    If you've used an 81 before and like it, I don't want to dissuade you. Lots of people like them. If you haven't tried one, you can go to a store and try one since so many guitars come with them stock. It won't sound the same in every guitar but you could get some idea.

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  16. #36
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    Default Re: JB alternative for mahogany guitar

    Quote Originally Posted by GrabtharsHammer View Post
    Okay, cutting off the wire between the tone and the volume pot worked to bypass the tone control. Thanks for your help with this!

    And bypassing the tone pot definitely helped to bring up the high mids a bit. However... I still don't like the way the low end sounds with this pickup. Still kinda mushy, wooly and undefined. Not at all what I was hoping or expecting. I guess the Custom 5 has to go. Currently torn between the Duncan Distortion and an EMG 81/P60 combo. Leaning towards the EMGs though. I grew up with that sound and perhaps I finally have to admit that this is exactly what I want. Or - new idea - perhaps I could give the Black Winter a try?!
    I know I'm a bit of a Black Winter cultist, but if you're looking for a good high-gain pickup with tight bass, heavy mids, and plenty of treble cut, the Winter will make you happy.

  17. #37
    Member GrabtharsHammer's Avatar
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    Default Re: JB alternative for mahogany guitar

    I watched a couple more youtube clips and got concerned if perhaps the higher midrange of the Black Winter could be too much for my taste. In some comparison videos I heard a weird and slightly annoying almost singlecoil-like snappiness that the Distortion doesn't seem to have.

    I just ordered a covered Distortion Trembucker for my Pacifica and made an appointment with the luthier in two weeks to get the pickup and a 500k P/P tone pot installed. Can't wait to hear the result! Besides I will get the fugly tortoise pickguard and the P90's cream cover replaced by black ones. Guitar should be quite a beauty afterwards.

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