DiMarzio and Duncan pickups have slightly different specs and use some different materials than they did 30 years ago. A modern Super Distortion doesn't sound exactly like a 1978 Super Distortion, and the same holds true for most DiMarzios and Duncans. They are mass produced, mass marketed pickups designed (and then REdesigned) to work with the largest number of guitars possible so that they sound good in all of them. Of course, that takes away some of the distinctiveness that the original versions of those pickups had when they were first introduced. An independent winder/builder will often ask what kind of guitar you're putting the pickups in, and what kind of tones you're looking for - and will adjust the winds, change magnets, or offer other suggestions to make sure that the pickups are optimized for the buyer's needs. You just don't get that kind of personalized service - or tone - from the big boys. They can't do that anymore (and haven't been able to since the 70's). And that's why I said that independent winders/builders have pickups with more character. They aren't mass produced, and they are often personalized to the player for their specific wants and needs. Like I said - DiMarzio and Duncan make good pickups. They work for a lot of people, but not for everyone or every guitar.