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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've got an Epiphone Les Paul 7 and need some pickup advice. This guitar currently has the stock pickups in it which, in all honesty, really aren't that bad. They sound fantastic clean and with a little bit of dirt, but they are just way too dark and muddy when there is any amount of distortion. This guitar is a huge thick slab of mahog (and a fairly muddy sounding piece at that since it's not a super expensive guitar) and I'm looking for a pickup that will brighten and clear it up. The problem I'm finding is that most 7 string pickups that are really bright are also super high output. I'm looking for something not any hotter than like a JB or something else in the "vintage-hot" range. BKPs are also out of the question because I just can't afford them.

Any ideas?
 

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Mr. Negative Pants, ,
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Duncan Custom-7 in the bridge and Jazz-7 in the neck.

If you can, get the Custom-7's magnet swapped out for Alnico 8. (The Custom is ceramic in its stock form.)

I've tried a bunch of different pickup combos in my Dean Evo (similar to your Epi) and this combination is magic.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Yeah, the pickups at the top of my list were the JB7 and Jazz7. I had mainly ruled out the Custom 7 because I generally prefer alnico, but if a pickup swap isn't that hard, I'd definitely give it a shot. My all-time fav pickup set is the JB/Jazz set I have in my SG, and I'd love to have the same type of tones in this guitar.
 

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Mr. Negative Pants, ,
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I love older JBs, but i had a JB-7 in that guitar first, and it just wasn't right. The newer JBs are too hot and tend to get woolly, with an annoying upper-mid spike. The Custom just feels more even and more punchy, with really tight bottom end.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Hmm, good to know. What about the Full Shred 7? It's a fairly bright pickup, correct? And what all goes into a magnet swap?

I just hate that everything in 7 string land is so limited, and overwhelmingly geared towards metal. If this guitar was a 6 I'd know exactly all my options.
 

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Mr. Negative Pants, ,
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I haven't tried the Full Shred 7, so i couldn't tell ya.

To swap a magnet, you have to unscrew the base plate, remove a bit of the tape overwrap from the coils, carefully slide out the bar magnet and slide a new one in its place, being careful to make sure it's the right polarity. It's not rocket surgery, but it's not a "my first wiring project" thing to do.
 

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Canis lupis robertus
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I love older JBs, but i had a JB-7 in that guitar first, and it just wasn't right. The newer JBs are too hot and tend to get woolly, with an annoying upper-mid spike. The Custom just feels more even and more punchy, with really tight bottom end.
Yup. Bass is just flub on the JB-7s. Like a mother fuckin' tuba. Ugh. On that LP it would just sound like shit in a blender on the low end. Everything else sound-wise sounds stellar on those JB-7s, IMO, and I too love the old JBs.

+1 to what Darren said. The Duncan Custom loves mahogany, and if you dig alnico, an alnico 8 will give you that alnico character, but with some ceramic clarity and tightness.
 
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