Help me find PAF pickups for my Les Paul!!

Discussion in 'Pickups' started by Warlag, Aug 3, 2017.

  1. Warlag

    Warlag Junior Member

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    Hey I currently have Gibson Les Paul Signature T with the Slash Seymour Duncan's in them. I'm not too big on them, especially the neck pickup. I find it a bit dark and kinda muffled like. I like playing around in clean with some blues licks and light over drive. I also play some rock. I'd like a nice bright clear PAF set. I've been looking at the Lindy Fralin Pure PAF, David Allen P51 Mustangs, Seymour Duncan Seth Lover or maybe Antiquity. I was also considering doing the 50s wireing. Would like to hear some suggestions on PAF pickups you think would do the trick for me! Let me know of your experiences too! Thanks guys!
     
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  2. CheopisIV

    CheopisIV Copper Slinger MLP Vendor

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    Seth Lovers are okay, Antiquities work for a lot of people but I never got along with them. Before dropping a dime on pickups though do yourself a favor and do the 50s wiring. First make sure you have 500k pots though as that'll change a lot of things for the better.
     
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  3. B5Erik

    B5Erik Senior Member

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    Look into ReWinds. They are fantastic.
     
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  4. Brutus

    Brutus Senior Member

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    Sigil's LTD Holy Grail Set w/ NOS 50's wire are fantastic! I love the 2 sets I have. I'm sure David's other PAF style sets are just as good too.

    Wolfetone Legends. Unbelievably Good! These are one of my all-time favorites. Wolfe's other PAF sets are also very good.

    Electric City Pickups Hallowed Ground set. Fantastic! Other sets are great too.

    Sliders Vintage Pickups. Rod "Slider" McQueen is from Sydney Australia who winds some fantastic PAF style pups plus more. His single coils are some of the very best available.

    OX4. Mark is the UK. Another winder who makes some killer PAF style pups.

    Wizz. Alek is in Croatia. He's also another winder who builds some fantastic PAF style pups
     
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  5. devnulljp

    devnulljp Senior Member

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    ReWind Al2 PAFs.
     
  6. Warlag

    Warlag Junior Member

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    Right now it has the original wording... it came with coil taps too but when the Slash pickups were put in only the neck one was able to split. So I believe the 50s wireing is going to make a great difference for me since I never use the split anyway. I never heard most of the pickups named so I'll deffently be checking them out! I heard good things on the Sigil Pickups.. I heard they can be worth the extra money.
     
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  7. tazzboy

    tazzboy V.I.P. Member

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    Doyle Coils Tru-clones
     
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  8. Who

    Who Who is not here. Please leave a message.... Premium Member

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    +2.

    Contact Cooljuk http://www.mylespaul.com/members/cooljuk.12988/

    I got a set of his. Put my SD Slash pickups back in the box. And I like the Slash pickups.

    You can spend your time and money searching..... but check out his posts and demos. He's a great person to work with, too.
     
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  9. B5Erik

    B5Erik Senior Member

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    One other thing about James and ReWind - just because you don't see a type of pickup on his website (yet) doesn't mean he can't make you exactly what you need.

    He can make mid output pickups, high output pickups, killer 70's style Super Distortions, and all sorts of other goodies to go with the vintage style and modified PAF pickups that he's best known for. I'm going to get a Super Distortion bridge pickup from him at some point since he's done the research and trial and error and has dialed in that tone better than the double cream company does it now!

    Whether you get something from him now or in the future you will be very happy that you did. For me, I just don't have enough guitars (that need pickup improvement) for all the pickups I want to try! (ReWind Super Distortion type, Vineham 6070, Wolfetone Marshallhead - among others.)
     
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  10. dmoss74

    dmoss74 Senior Member

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    omg, these threads are awesomely hilarious. poster asks a question (including a simple wiring mod), and all the anecdotal replies fall in like lemmings.

    the first response was the best one. TRY '50s wiring. if after that you aren't satisfied (and you probably won't be), do some due diligence in selecting a winder to work with (forget the random, absolute answers in this thread). all of the folks you mentioned (and many others) would be happy to answer your tonal questions, and steer you towards tonal nirvana.

    for heysuse's sake, one of the best pickups i have heard in MY PARTICULAR guitar in the last year was one a lot of the cork-sniffers on this site would totally poo poo.

    think (and listen) for yourself. :)

    happy hunting!

    disclaimer: my two lps have pickups that are widely associated with class a winders in these parts. but you still have to decide for yourself. me telling (more like dictating) you the best winder/pickup is a fool's errand.

    your amp is going to have way more influence on your tone, than any pickup "upgrade" will.
     
    Last edited: Aug 5, 2017
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  11. Stuff

    Stuff Senior Member

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    I've been through a similar journey with my Sig T, including problems around a muddy neck pickup.

    Along the way, I tried a set of Seth Lovers. The set I had had no balls at all. The neck was nice enough, but the bridge pup just didn't do anything for me at all. If you're going down that route, a Seth Lover neck and a Pearly Gates bridge might be the better combo.

    I ended up with a set of Monty's Guitars' PAF Replicas, combined with a 0.015u cap (instead of the normal 0.022u) for the neck pup. The Monty's set are bright and articulate - closest I've found to my favourite CustomBucker set - and have been perfect for my Sig T. The cap change was essential to clean up the mud.

    I don't have 50's wiring in mine. I do have it in other LPs. In my experience, it won't fix the problems you're asking about. 50's wiring gives you more tonal options if you're someone who doesn't run volume and tone on 10 all the time. But if the LP doesn't sound good with everything on 10, it isn't going to sound any better with 50s wiring.

    Back in the 90s, I was given the same advice by someone who ran my local guitar shop at the time. He was also an accomplished session and touring musician, who had played on big hits many of us will have heard. To an amateur like me, he had practical, professional experience that I'll never have. I went to him looking for new pickups for almost exactly the same problem the OP has. He told me that pickup "upgrades" are never the answer, and to change amps instead.

    That was the worst advice anyone has ever given me about a guitar.

    I'm not a touring or studio musician. I've only got access to the amps stocked by my local shop, subject to the good will of staff letting me try them out. In 20 years, I never found an amp at any price point that could overcome the characteristics of the signal being fed into it.

    Eventually, I decided that the advice was the problem, and started the hunt for a set of new pickups. Took a few attempts to find a set that suited the guitar, my technique and my rig. Once we found the right set, that changed everything. Suddenly, amp selection became about finding the amp that suited the vibe and part I was working on.

    Amps, cabs and the speakers themselves do have a huge affect on tone. The key word there is "affect". They take the signal from the guitar + pups and affect it. If that signal has problematic characteristics to begin with (such as mud from the neck pup), they won't overcome it.

    At least, not in my experience of wasting 20 years chasing exactly that advice.
     
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  12. morbidalex666

    morbidalex666 Senior Member

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    OP, welcome to the forum!

    My 2c is that you can start by the cheapest mods first.
    CheopisIV suggested that you need to check your pots. Best advice ever!
    Get your hands on a multimeter, desolder everything and check the true value of the pots. IMO both volumes should be above 500k. If you've got at least 2 pots that measure above 500k, put those at the vol positions.
    Next the caps. You can get a couple of caps at different values and check what they are doing for your sound. .022uf is the Gibson standard, but many bridge pups benefit from a .033uf and many neck pups from a .015uf. No need to invest at high cost caps (for now), you can get a bunch of orange drops cheap and check them out.

    50s wiring is not for everyone. You need to learn what yout guitar controls can do to fully take advantage of it. But it's surely worth trying out. I tried it, can't go back.

    I don't know your budget, but the above mods will cost you next to nothing and will be a good start to your tone-seeking journey.

    Reading your description of your sound, I believe that a set of unpotted paf style humbuckers would be appropriate. Clarity, liveliness and detail very much come from not potting IME.

    There are affordable options around in the used market and even buying new. These more affordable pups made by small winders are every bit as nice as the more expensive ones; no joke.

    Cheers!
     
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  13. bulletproof

    bulletproof aka tarddoggy Premium Member V.I.P. Member

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    @dmoss74 Absolutely no reason to be like this,man. If these threads are like" omg " to YOU,then stay out.....many tone adventures begin with this question.

    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------



    @Warlag I agree with CheopisIV about the 50's wiring....begin there,brother. And Welcome to the Forum:welcome:
     
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  14. rclausen

    rclausen Senior Member

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    First off, do you actually use the volume and tone knobs on the guitar? If you leave everything on 10 then upgrading your harness will have no impact. Also, have you tried adjusting the height and pole screws? Lower the neck pickup and raise the pole screws for more clarity
     
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  15. DarrellV

    DarrellV Derl Ver.... ERMAHGERD! I'm a sercarstic BOT! Silver Supporter Premium Member

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    Anybody else see the irony/humor in the first 2 posts? :eek2::facepalm:

    [​IMG]

    :rofl:

    OP, :welcome: to the funny farm!
     
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  16. Zoobiedood

    Zoobiedood Senior Member

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    Certainly an Antiquity would clear the mud up. So would a stock '59 pickup or a Jazz.
     
  17. Antigua

    Antigua Senior Member

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    The APH-2 set is wound a bit hotter, and uses AlNiCo 2 bars, so it's no surprise that they might lack clarity. They're like hotter Pearly Gates.

    Any lower wound set with AlNiCo 5 bars will probably be to your liking. There are dozens of such sets on the market, such as the Seymour Duncan '59 or Jazz sets. Or just replace the AlNiCo 2 bars with AlNiCo 5, and see if that does the trick.
     
  18. Warlag

    Warlag Junior Member

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    Thanks for welcoming me to the forum guys! I have heard alnico 5 magnets can brighten things up... I was thinking on trying a paf with alnico 5. im going over multiple videos and that of some pickups you guys suggested.. doing some reading on the capacitors for the pots and that. A lot of helpful advice here for me too thanks guys!
     
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  19. ARandall

    ARandall Senior Member

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    Not all A5's are good in the neck......in fact many aren't.

    The wind is much more important than the magnet, so many pickups of the same magnet vary a LOT in tonality.
    Some people get WAY too involved in specs and readings.....expecting that to hold the secret of what pickups sound like. There are too many variables for those to really mean too much. In buying pickups you personally might be best just going to a winder and letting them know what you want and the sort of tones you like from each pickup position.

    As to pot readings.....the pots for the neck pickup can be quite high for your needs.....550k pots would be ideal. The bridge, which already has enough highs typically, can be lower. Mid 400's is great for that.
    The volume pot value is most important as it couples with the pickup directly. The higher values will make the whole pickup brighter......mids and treble content both. In this way the whole range of adjustment of a pickup will be different. The tone pot is much more 'linear', in that you can turn a 500k pot down and find the same tone as if there was a 250k pot on 10.
    The caps simply determine how much of the tops are removed. High values like .1, .047 or .033 are good for the bridge, as you can get minor effects even on 10. And the value plus the knob position can make for different amounts of rolloff as they are somewhat interactive.
    Values like .015, .01 or even .001 I have used for neck pickups that are muddy. In these cases I leave the tone always on 10. You can even disconnect the tone altogether.
     
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  20. Antigua

    Antigua Senior Member

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    The same is true of guitar loud speakers. The manufacturers talk about magnet types and frequency responses, power ratings, nominal impedances... but the wind is much more important than all of that. It's just all so complicated. You'll probably never get the speaker that's right for you unless you go custom. Or... maybe not.
     

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