Single coil-sized buckers for neck position in an H-S config
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Thread: Single coil-sized buckers for neck position in an H-S config

  1. #1


    Join Date: Oct 2008
    Location: Cambridgeshire, UK
    ME: Charvel So Cal
    Rig: Triple Rec

    iTrader: 3 (100%)

    Single coil-sized buckers for neck position in an H-S config

    So, the pickup merry-go-round in my Charvel clearly isn't over. I've settled on the bridge pickup at least (Aldrich). I'm absolutely in love with that again, maybe moreso than the first time I tried it!

    But the neck pickup...

    I've had a Duncan Hot Rails in there for a while but it's a bit bland. It's just.... hot. And raily. No but seriously it's just all hot with no character really. It pretty much just sounds like a full blown humbucker. But not a particularly amazing one.

    So, the neck pickup I had in here the last time I had the Aldrich was a Dimarzio Chopper. So I just grabbed another one to put in as I remember really liking that combo.

    Well, I don't. I don't know if I just didn't try this combo through a proper rig or whatever, but man, the chopper is waaay too bassy.

    I get that it's ostensibly a bridge pickup, but even Dimarzios website says it's a good neck pickup with a hot humbucker on the bridge. But the low end leaps out way too strongly when you switch pickups, it just sounds odd, especially with gain. The top end bite of it is great though, and has way more character and tone than the Hot Rails.

    (Also, before anybody suggests it, Yes, I've played with pickup height)

    In fact after some cursory reading I'm getting the feeling that Dimarzio rails are all together better at retaining a single coil quality, which I really dig. I don't generally like warm/round neck pickup tones.

    Does anybody have any experience with any others in the Dimarzio line, when used in the neck position with a hot humbucker in the bridge?

    Not amazingly fussed about power differentials. Unless it's the other way round like the chopper (I.e. the neck out-powers the bridge)

    Fast Track 1?
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  3. #2


    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%)

    Fast Track 1 isn't bad, it's a little more humbucker-y than something like a Virtual Vintage/Area or a Cruiser (which sounds fuckin' great, super glassy, but man are they weak, weaker than most modern conventional singlecoils) but still some singlecoil character.

    If you're looking for a brighter singlecoil-sized humbucker in the neck, and reasonably hot, then the Fast Track 1 is a decent option. Other than that, I liked the Heavy Blues 2 but it's a bit on the dark side so it probably wouldn't work for you, and an Area 61 is very singlecoil-y and bright and glassy, but probably a little too weak for you.
    "They can kill you, but the legalities of eating you are a bit dicier." - David Foster Wallace

  4. #3


    Join Date: Oct 2008
    Location: Phx, AZ
    ME: Custom Tele
    MA: Guild GAD F150
    MB: Fender Jazz Bass 24 V
    Rig: Jet City JCA-22H

    iTrader: 18 (100%)

    Cruiser is the pickup of choice for Andy timmons. A little lower output than the chopper

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  6. #4


    Join Date: Oct 2008
    Location: Cambridgeshire, UK
    ME: Charvel So Cal
    Rig: Triple Rec

    iTrader: 3 (100%)

    Hmm yeah I'm torn between the FT1 and the Cruiser. I'm wondering if the Cruiser is too low output and single coil-y... at which point I may as well go for an actual single coil rather than a rail.

    FT1 sounds promising. I'll start there I think.

  7. #5


    Join Date: Sep 2008
    Location: Woodbridge, VA
    ME: KxK ProtoVii-7
    MA: Martin D-28
    Rig: Mesa/Boobies Stiletto

    iTrader: 2 (100%)

    The JB Jr may be my favorite single coil sized neck humbucker.
    Noodles

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  8. #6


    Join Date: Oct 2008
    Location: Cambridgeshire, UK
    ME: Charvel So Cal
    Rig: Triple Rec

    iTrader: 3 (100%)

    Quote Originally Posted by noodles View Post
    The JB Jr may be my favorite single coil sized neck humbucker.
    Wow Really? Not what I expected to hear.

    This is an unfathomably shallow reason against It, but I really hate the way Duncan's mini buckers look

  9. #7


    Join Date: Apr 2010
    Location: Edinburgh, Scotland
    ME: Hacked tele and RGs
    MA: Freshman
    Rig: Mesa Mk V:25

    iTrader: 1 (100%)

    I've got a cruiser sitting in a box. It'd been paired with an AT1. Great pickup but I wanted a little more so I've replaced it with a satch track in parallel.

  10. #8


    Join Date: Oct 2008
    Location: Florida
    ME: Washburn N7
    Rig: Peavey 5150

    iTrader: 1 (100%)

    FT2. Trust me. Badass neck pickup.

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