Who uses all single coils for metal or hard rock (Strats)? Recommended pickups?
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Thread: Who uses all single coils for metal or hard rock (Strats)? Recommended pickups?

  1. #1


    Join Date: May 2019
    Location: Montana, USA
    ME: Gibson Les Paul Trad
    Rig: Marshall VM & DSL50

    iTrader: 0

    Who uses single coils for metal or hard rock (Strats)? Recommended pickups?

    My main guitar is a Les Paul with Duncan Seth Lovers. It gives me what I'm looking for for rock and Metal. I also am enjoying my Stratocaster (SSS), and like the sounds that Blackmore, YJM, and Uli Roth get. I never see myself using a Strat as my primary Metal guitar, but I'm interested in what pickups work well when overdriven to heavy rock levels, especially for Rhythm work - good lead tone is easier.

    I don't use modern super high gain, but hover around '70s - '80s levels using a Marshall Vintage Modern 50w Combo or a DSL50 head. Sometimes I'll goose them with a boost or OD pedal, but that's about all I use.

    I wouldn't use the Strat for thrash or death metal work, but classic '70s hard rock, Doom Stuff, NWOBHM and classic metal styles. I'd still like it to clean up well.

    Not looking for hot rails or mini humbuckers. Interested in keeping the unique characteristics of single coils. I've got humbuckers around in other guitars for when I want humbuckers.

    So, who's using singles and what pickups and setup work well for you (or them - other musicians you know of or listen to)?
    Last edited by Cossack; 05-06-2019 at 02:50 AM.

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  3. #2


    Join Date: Sep 2008
    Location: Kitchen/Laundry Room
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    Big vote for injectors. They're super spanky but hum canceling. Next pickup PG moved to after the PAF Pro, which is a vintage hot like it sounds like you're into, and these are in that vein.
    Argbadh - RHLC©

  4. #3


    Join Date: May 2019
    Location: Montana, USA
    ME: Gibson Les Paul Trad
    Rig: Marshall VM & DSL50

    iTrader: 0

    Quote Originally Posted by Randy View Post
    Big vote for injectors. They're super spanky but hum canceling. Next pickup PG moved to after the PAF Pro, which is a vintage hot like it sounds like you're into, and these are in that vein.
    Interesting - somehow those completely slipped past my attention. They sound like they might be what I'm looking for. I'll be looking into them - thanks!

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  6. #4


    Join Date: May 2009
    Location: Southern Virginia
    ME: Swampcaster
    MA: Fender Sonoran
    MB: Squier Active Jazz 5
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    I'm a tele guy, but i've been wanting a strat in my arsenal for a long time now. Just going by tones that I really like but no real hands on experience, I would either go with a set of Bardens (Ty Tabor-like tone), BKP Trilogy Suite, or the Duncan YJM set. I would also be interested in Nordstrand's offerings because I know they wouldn't be noisy, I just don't know if their strat pickups would sound like what I want. I love their tele pickups though!

    RHLC East Coast President

  7. #5


    Join Date: Sep 2008
    Location: Somerville, Ma
    ME: Suhr Modern 7
    MA: Martin MC16-GTE
    MB: Squier 5 string P-bass
    Rig: Mark V

    iTrader: 5 (100%)

    Do you need hum cancelling? If so, the Dimarzio Area series are worth a look - I was using the 67 in the neck and 61 in the middle (and a humbucker in the bridge) for a while and they're pretty authentic sounding, but hum free and with lower magnetic pull than a traditional singlecoil.

    If you don't, then what finally made me drop them was the Suhr ML Standard set. I've got the V60LPs in another guitar and I may actually prefer them if I had to pick just one, but the MLs are mid-ier and punchier, and more "rock" to my ears.
    "They can kill you, but the legalities of eating you are a bit dicier." - David Foster Wallace

  8. #6


    Join Date: Oct 2015
    Location: Tampa Bay

    iTrader: 0

    I like the YJM Fury set, as well as the Classic Stack set for hard rock/metal. If you want to go traditional singles, a set of Custom Flats is a great choice.
    Writer/Artist with Seymour Duncan
    My Gear & Music Pages

  9. #7


    Join Date: May 2019
    Location: Montana, USA
    ME: Gibson Les Paul Trad
    Rig: Marshall VM & DSL50

    iTrader: 0

    I've never worried about hum cancelling in the past, but I can see how it's going to help for high gain. I've played single coils on stage before, but that was doing '50s rock gigs. All my heavier stuff has been my Gibson V (gone now). Before I buy anything I'll experiment more with the stock single coils in my Strat (MIM Classic '70s) at higher volumes.
    Last edited by Cossack; 05-07-2019 at 01:23 AM.

  10. #8


    Join Date: Jun 2006
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    Rig: SLO|Road King|Überschall

    iTrader: 10 (100%)

    I *LOVE* the BKP Trilogy Suite set.

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