Pickup suggestion for Carvin superstrat

Cheddar!

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Hi!

Ever since I got an R9, I stopped playing my other ‘main’ almost completely, but lately I found myself going back to it and, well… it’s just not that good sounding!

I am talking about a Carvin ST300C that I custom ordered almost a decade ago and I babied it like no other.
It has an original Floyd Rose, the usual metal locking nut, a koa body, flamed maple fretboard, and quilted maple top.
Oh, and it’s neck through construction.
It also has an active circuit with treble and bass pots(but it can be disabled and then it has normal tone/volume), splitting switch for each pickup, and a phase switch.

I am looking to replace the stock Carvin made humbuckers as I find their sound to be… lacking.
There are no harmonics, it sounds thin at times, sometimes they feel weak and other times too strong, I just can’t get along with them, and it’s a shame because it’s a great guitar otherwise!

I don’t have brand preferences, but they have to be splittable, fit an F-spaced guitar, and be mid to high output(but aiming more towards mid output).
EQ-wise, I am afraid I can’t pinpoint what I prefer. I want them to be balanced, rich, and full, without being overly bassy and/or lacking in mids.
I play blues, jazz, rock, some metal here and there.

Sorry for the long post, I am just trying to give as much info as possible for any possible recommendations!

Any ideas/help will be greatly appreciated, thank you!

Here’s a pic of the girl :D
 

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drew365

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I have an ST300. It was my #1 for years but fell by the wayside. I put Fishman Fluence Classics in it. They sound good and are nice and quiet, but I'm actually thinking of putting the stock S22 / H22 back in it, just to change things up again.
I would be looking hard at your amp. The pickups can only do so much. You don't want a pickup that's so hot, you can't get a good clean. My 2c. Here's my Carvin. It's a mahogany body, maple cap, ebony FB.
 

lwchafin

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Never cared for active pickups. For what you're describing it seems to me that Lollar, Seymour Duncan and DiMarzio all have several choices in the mid-output. I'd read my ass off in the pickup forums, confuse the hell out of myself and buy a set of DiMarzio Bluesbuckers or SD Pearly Gates (I assume they come in f-spacing). They are both really nice sounding pickups for blues and classic rock, and dialed back I bet they sound really nice for jazz - stick a nutty hot OD pedal in the chain and they could probably even handle the metal.
 

NotScott

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Duncan Custom for the bridge and Duncan 59 for neck. Will do everything you ask for and more.
 

drew365

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I put D'Marzio's, PAF Joe / Mo Joe set in my JP15 and it replaced my ST300 as my gigging guitar.
 

BKS

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Wow I love the carvin pickups in mine, all 4 are stock. But than everybody their own.
Tl60 and dc120 have the same pickups. DC 200 has the older m22 pickups the others c22.
DSC_1007_compress39.jpg

DSC_2968_compress58.jpg

There are so many pickups it is best to listen to many make a selection and try some.
 

Cheddar!

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As much as I’d like singles or p90s, the guitar is routed for two humbuckers
And I don’t want to go with a humbucker sized p90/single because I have a coil split switch on both

I am, however, debating going with a Fralin Twangmaster or something similar just for the neck, and disabling the neck coil split.
 

Cheddar!

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I have an ST300. It was my #1 for years but fell by the wayside. I put Fishman Fluence Classics in it. They sound good and are nice and quiet, but I'm actually thinking of putting the stock S22 / H22 back in it, just to change things up again.
I would be looking hard at your amp. The pickups can only do so much. You don't want a pickup that's so hot, you can't get a good clean. My 2c. Here's my Carvin. It's a mahogany body, maple cap, ebony FB.
That’s a lovely guitar!
I don’t really want active pickups, honestly speaking, and I played with the amp a lot!
I can get the juicy tones I want with my R9 and some other guitars like strats. Only my Carvin sounds iffy :D
 

blouie

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I shied away from replacing the humbuckers on my SH575 because I thought they were a proprietary design! Can the Carvin take a "regular" LP style humbucker. My Carvin is and INCREDIBLE guitar; so nice to see others here with Carvins.
IMG_20200103_163607-MED.jpg
 
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Cheddar!

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Wow I love the carvin pickups in mine, all 4 are stock. But than everybody their own.
Tl60 and dc120 have the same pickups. DC 200 has the older m22 pickups the others c22.
View attachment 631456
View attachment 631457
There are so many pickups it is best to listen to many make a selection and try some.
Mine has the m22sd in the bridge and an m22v in the neck.
I really wish I could try a bunch, but sadly here in Greece where I am working at the moment, there’s not a lot of possibilities to do that.
Hence why I am trying to get some pointers or recommendations :D
The DiMarzio Tone Zone/Air Norton set fits the bill, IMO.
I did actually a lot of good things about the Norton in the past! It is one of the options I am strongly considering.
 

BKS

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I believe mine should be m22N and m22t . It also has the older discontinued A500G preamp.
Dc120 is the youngest of the bunch and my only non ninties. Most bling guitar i own.
C22 pickups but can't compare as being a dc 120 it is just a different beast. Atm my only carvin i am not shure i should keep even tho it sounds so good.
20190805_231608_compress98.jpg
 

hbucker

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Hi!

Ever since I got an R9, I stopped playing my other ‘main’ almost completely, but lately I found myself going back to it and, well… it’s just not that good sounding!

I am talking about a Carvin ST300C that I custom ordered almost a decade ago and I babied it like no other.
It has an original Floyd Rose, the usual metal locking nut, a koa body, flamed maple fretboard, and quilted maple top.
Oh, and it’s neck through construction.
It also has an active circuit with treble and bass pots(but it can be disabled and then it has normal tone/volume), splitting switch for each pickup, and a phase switch.

I am looking to replace the stock Carvin made humbuckers as I find their sound to be… lacking.
There are no harmonics, it sounds thin at times, sometimes they feel weak and other times too strong, I just can’t get along with them, and it’s a shame because it’s a great guitar otherwise!

I don’t have brand preferences, but they have to be splittable, fit an F-spaced guitar, and be mid to high output(but aiming more towards mid output).
EQ-wise, I am afraid I can’t pinpoint what I prefer. I want them to be balanced, rich, and full, without being overly bassy and/or lacking in mids.
I play blues, jazz, rock, some metal here and there.

Sorry for the long post, I am just trying to give as much info as possible for any possible recommendations!

Any ideas/help will be greatly appreciated, thank you!

Here’s a pic of the girl :D
Ultimately, I never cared for Carvin pickups either. So I don't blame you for wanting to get more out of that guitar.

Honestly, I love EVH Wolfgang pickups. They don't 'just do EVH.' They are very versatile and with the right amp go clean to mean like nobody's business.

JBs seem like a decent choice. They are a little flubbier than I prefer. But I have one in a guitar and ultimately I get very usable tones from it.

I'm not a fan of the Tone Zone and find it to be nothing like the stock pickups in my Music Man EVH. Which is what they're advertised to sound like. Many people like them though, so...

So many pickups out there. Have fun looking!
 

BKS

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What about the Seymour Duncan Full Shred? Not familiar with the bridge but the neck pickup is great.
I love sentient pegasus set but that might be just a little to much?
If you have the budget take a look at bareknuckle, enough choices .
 

Cheddar!

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What about the Seymour Duncan Full Shred? Not familiar with the bridge but the neck pickup is great.
I love sentient pegasus set but that might be just a little to much?
If you have the budget take a look at bareknuckle, enough choices .
Yeah, Sentient/pegasus might be a bit too much, haha
I have not heard much about the Full Shred, I’ll look into it!
As for the budget, it’s not a problem as long as it doesn’t go into overly expensive like 300 euros per pickup.
I do have some brands I want to check like Bare Knuckle, Lindy Fralin, Wolfetone, Wizz, etc.
I’d love some recommendations from these too if anyone has ideas!
 
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AJK1

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Check string spacing on your guitar as Dimarzio and SD have quite different interpretations of spacing on their std and F spaced pickups
Dimarzio
Std 48.64mm
F Space 51.05mm
Duncan
Std 49mm
F Space 52.6mm
It doesn’t sound like much difference but it is
Anyway, hope that info helps
 
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Cheddar!

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Check string spacing on your guitar as Dimarzio and SD have quite different interpretations of spacing on their std and F spaced pickups
Dimarzio
Std 48.64mm
F Space 51.05mm
Duncan
Std 49mm
F Space 52.6mm
It doesn’t sound like much difference but it is
Anyway, hope that info helps
Oh? I actually didn’t know that!
I will double check the length on the guitar and then the spacing of the pickup.

I am somewhat thinking of Fralin Unbucker!
It’s supposed to sound much closer to real single coils when split, unlike the ones I have installed now or other humbuckers.

Does anyone have experience with the Fralin Unbuckers? :D
 

Red Beard

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I always liked Seymour’s JB/Jazz
These interest me greatly might be worth checking out

 

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