Pickups

Pickup change for my Tokai – What should I get?

1

Ok. My Tokai LS-135 is a great guitar but the pickups are overly warm and it really lacks the resonance/dimension I want in the neck position. So yes, this is one of those Les Paul - type guitars that many would sound "muddy". It's a solid one too at over 10lbs.

1) Thinking of TV Jones Classics. That would certainly be a change

2) Seymour Duncan Slash Signature

3) TVJ Classics Plus in the neck and a Powertron in the bridge.

4) Keep some warmth but also a little bell-like clarity with Supertrons in both.

or....

What options can you recommend and what kind of tone, when your suggestion played clean, do think it would produce in this dense, Les Paul-type guitar? Again, this is a heavy LP with (I think) 250k pots.

2

P90's.

3

P90's.

– Pt

Good call but I have an Edwards w/ Lollar P90s. Their too hot though and need way more mids so am looking to switch them out. Not sure with what yet but leaning towards Gibsons.

4

I find p90s a lil too creamy...I love the Dynasonics and the 70s t-tops. T-tops are nice - bright with plenty-o-bite. A few ppl are making them now, inc Brandon wound.

5

I have a couple guitars with P90's. Guild Bluesbird Blues 90 has Seymour Duncan that are a bit on the hot side, A Gibson Les Paul goldtop that came with humbuckers, I put Kent Armstrong humbucker size P 90's on it and I love the sound. My best sounding guitar is a 1968 Telecaster that I put on a 4 way switch that will put both pickups in series (AKA humbucker). It's a toss up which guitar I like the sound of the best.

6

From one MIJ Les Paul clone owner to another (I have an Edwards LP 130 ALS) :

IMO, I wouldn't put Filtertron type pu's in as nice a LP clone as a Tokai LS-135 but that's just me.

First thing you might want to do is if the pots are 250k you might want to try 400-500k pots.

If you are looking for more clarity and note separation IMO you can't go wrong with a pair of Duncan Seth Lovers. The Seth's came stock in my Edwards and they are very accurate renditions of real vintage PAF's meaning lower output and no mud. The bridge pu can push an amp and has plenty of "chunk" but also maintains a nice clear high end with some nice bite and excellent note definition even with tons of OD or distortion. The clean sounds are exceptional also, very clear, articulate and balanced. The neck pu is as good or even better; no mud and it just sings clean or dirty. Both pu's together you get a slightly scooped tone that is great for rockabilly and just about anything else. Replacing the stock 'buckers with the Seth Lovers will be like removing a blanket from your guitar.

7

Gretschadelphia made exactly the same comments that I was going to make.

8

Gretschadelphia made exactly the same comments that I was going to make.

– Don Birchett

I also posted in the "other" Gretsch site and one member made the same recommendation. I had not thought of these but now they've come to my attention, I think these are the frontrunners. I had forgotten all about them.

Good input above about P90s but I have an Edwards LP that is equipped with P90s where they currently have hot Lollars but am probably going to replace them with something that accentuates the mid range....probably Gibson P90s.

9

I find p90s a lil too creamy...I love the Dynasonics and the 70s t-tops. T-tops are nice - bright with plenty-o-bite. A few ppl are making them now, inc Brandon wound.

– eCastro

I love the sound of the T-Tops for that bucker/Gibson sound. I have 2 Gibson T-Tops from the late 70's and one I believe from around '73. I had two of them in a PRS Bernie Marsden for a while and that guitar had some brass ! The scale is a bit shorter than Gibson's though and it gets a bit tight in the upper frets. Other than that man you could dial in some great tones with the sustain of the body with those T-Tops.

You can also get a nice mellow jazzy tone in the neck position with the T-Tops.

10

I just want to reiterate what Gretschadelphia said - the first thing you should do is ensure the guitar is fitted with 500K pots and the correct value tone caps.

Any pickup change should follow on from that IMHO.

Great clear sounding PAF replicas that I have tried include Monty's, Tyson Tone, Throbak and Echopark.


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