Spectrum ST Pickup EQ>>>

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Spectrum ST Pickup EQ>>>

Post by T.M.A. on Wed Oct 02, 2013 4:33 am

Hello there Fellow Westonians!

I'm new here and i never thought I would be... haha! I got my first Westone my freshman year in high school. I don't know what happened, but I just fell in love with these guitars. I currently have 3 (sx, mx and st) and should be receiving a 4th in the mail this week (another ST)... MY GOSH! I can't explain it, but I just love these guitars. My tech thinks I'm crazy...

Anyhow, My ST has become my main axe. I just love that punch from the all maple and the rosewood fretboard softens it up just enough. While I love the sound of the pickups on that guitar, they can at times be a little thin. Sometimes the notes can get lost and not quite "jump out" as they should.

What i was thinking of, is taking the pickup to a custom builder and saying "Here, make me this pickup except better. Give it a little more articulation and "note jumpy-outedness" and girth." I'm wondering if you guys might be able to help me with this matter. Anybody know about what the EQ of these pickups are? Particularly the bridge? Know of winders that I might go to? The ST is a Hum Hum set up and  each pickup looks to have two rows of hex screws, which might attribute to that nice, slight "bite" that it has.

What do you guys think?

I'm actually down-tuning. (C standard and C standard with a Bb on the bottom) I don't know if that's blasphemy around here or not. Very Happy 

PEACE!

T.M.A.
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Re: Spectrum ST Pickup EQ>>>

Post by corsair on Wed Oct 02, 2013 6:21 am

Grab a set of MMK 45s off the web - they were original to Matsumoku guitars of this era - and install the buggers!!  Failing that, the lads in here have changed the UBCs out for loads of others; check them out!

I've got an ST, as well - nice wee guitar! I'm lucky enough to have an MX, a GT, an LX and an Electra Phoenix X195, which us the same shape as the Spectrum but with a S/H/S pickup set up; they're a great gigging guitar!

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Re: Spectrum ST Pickup EQ>>>

Post by T.M.A. on Wed Oct 02, 2013 6:51 am

Right on Corsair. Thanks for the input. I'm pretty sure the pickup in the guitar is the stock MMK 45. So I guess I'm looking to craft a "Better" MMK 45...

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Re: Spectrum ST Pickup EQ>>>

Post by Barry on Wed Oct 02, 2013 9:48 am

Welcome fellow Spectrum lover! As Corsair said these are great little gigging guitars and won't break your back if you're doing 3-sets on your feet all night. ('bin dere, dun dat).

As for the pups, the MMK45 is the preferred original Matsumoku one to have, and they are clearly stamped on the back as such.

Unfortunately, there was a run of guitars where something called a UBC (unbalanced coil) was used instead. Read about them HERE on our web site, then do a search in these forums for 'UBC' for ideas on replacements.

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Re: Spectrum ST Pickup EQ>>>

Post by T.M.A. on Wed Oct 02, 2013 12:52 pm

"For guitars with the Magnaflux I pickup, unmarked pickups with the more normal hex pole pieces and a large plastic plate fitted underneath the pickup"...

YEAH!  That's exactly what i have. Just isn't quite doin it. You're sayin an MMK 45 would be a bit better? Better output? articulation? They're selling for quite a bit online actually...

I'll do the 'UBC' search in the forums right now.

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Re: Spectrum ST Pickup EQ>>>

Post by T.M.A. on Wed Oct 02, 2013 5:05 pm

I went through the forums and actually saw quite a few posts on this subject from you Barry.  You say that the Dimarzio super distortion is pretty close to the MMK45 eh? That pickup is actually the opposite eq slope of what I usually go for, but it might work in those guitars with all that maple. Any other suggestions from the seymour duncan line? Not lookin to really deviate from those two brands mainly because of their return policy...

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Re: Spectrum ST Pickup EQ>>>

Post by corsair on Wed Oct 02, 2013 5:12 pm

I'd love to put a Bareknuckle Nailbomb in the bridge position of an ST; I reckon that would darken up the sound magnificently!!

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Re: Spectrum ST Pickup EQ>>>

Post by Sgt. Vimes on Wed Oct 02, 2013 5:48 pm

I have recently begun to search out the lower end of the pickup market, brands like Artec, warman, Iron gear, Wilkinson, entwistle etc etc and have been happy with most of them so far.
For pocket money you can buy these and not worry about wasting big bucks on a pickup you just don't like.
There are many folks here who swear by GFS pickups, having not used them myself I cannot comment on them but I trust these guys who have far more experience/knowledge than myself.
I quite like the UBC's that came in my ST, but like you said yourself they lack a certain ..."umph" when called upon, so I swapped them out for a pair of Warman HBp90's   p90 flavoured HB size for £25 a pair and am absolutely over the moon with them....."horses for courses" as they say!

good luck

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Re: Spectrum ST Pickup EQ>>>

Post by Barry on Wed Oct 02, 2013 6:06 pm

You certainly won't go far wrong with the Dimarzio if you want to spend that amount of money. Perhaps if I had only one it would be OK, but I have a few Spectrums that needed 'help' and given what I've paid for them I couldn't justify it.

I've had success with GFS and Wilkinson, without breaking the bank.

Some more info for you on MMK pups HERE and HERE As noted in that post the 45 is a ceramic magnet type and the above pups I use are quite good replacements for my noise making.

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Re: Spectrum ST Pickup EQ>>>

Post by T.M.A. on Wed Oct 02, 2013 6:27 pm

Sgt Vimes: You gotta be kidding me... a pair of pickups for L25? They can't possibly sound good. I think I just might have to try one of these in the bridge...

Spectrum: Yeah I'm sure a nailbomb would be cool, but man I just don't have that case. maybe something to try in the future.

Barry: thanks for th resources again. I actually came across one of those articles. Very interesting...

Any suggestions from the seymour Duncan line?  I actually have a custom hybrid coming in the mail. so if I don't like that, I've got 21 days to try something else. What do you guys think about my original idea of taking the crummy ST pickup to a custom builder and saying "Here make something like this but better?"

T.M.A.
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Re: Spectrum ST Pickup EQ>>>

Post by Westbone on Wed Oct 02, 2013 7:23 pm

Your pickup builder will throw it away, not worth pursuing.

 Try these. Sounds like what your after.  I've used them, sound good.
http://www.guitarfetish.com/GFS-Classic-II-Alnico-2-Vintage-wound-Humbuckers-Black-_c_86.html

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Re: Spectrum ST Pickup EQ>>>

Post by T.M.A. on Wed Oct 02, 2013 8:25 pm

Those look like they'd really be worth a try WESTBONE -Too bad they don't have a tremelo version...

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Re: Spectrum ST Pickup EQ>>>

Post by Barry on Wed Oct 02, 2013 10:23 pm

T.M.A. wrote:...Too bad they don't have a tremelo version...
Shocked  wha-a-a-a-a??

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Re: Spectrum ST Pickup EQ>>>

Post by T.M.A. on Wed Oct 02, 2013 11:06 pm

Well, a normal spaced humbuckers pole pieces don't quite line up with the top and the bottom e-string.. The string won't hover exactly over the middle of the pole piece -it will sort of be on either end of it.  Thats why the seymour duncan trembuckers are so cool. The string goes right through the middle of the pole piece...

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Re: Spectrum ST Pickup EQ>>>

Post by T.M.A. on Wed Oct 02, 2013 11:07 pm

At least I didn't see anything about tremolo humbuckers there...

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Re: Spectrum ST Pickup EQ>>>

Post by Westbone on Thu Oct 03, 2013 6:06 am

Because a tremolo humbucker doesn't exist...it's all about your string spacing. Don't get sucked into the Seymour Duncan splurb!
Do you think a magnetic field only goes straight up?

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Re: Spectrum ST Pickup EQ>>>

Post by T.M.A. on Thu Oct 03, 2013 8:04 am

Damn Westbone...I think you're right. SWEET!. I'm gonna try a bunch of pickups now!!!

T.M.A.
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Re: Spectrum ST Pickup EQ>>>

Post by T.M.A. on Thu Oct 03, 2013 8:05 am

Thanks guys!

T.M.A.
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Re: Spectrum ST Pickup EQ>>>

Post by The Chad on Thu Oct 03, 2013 9:19 am

Pickup spacing makes little to no difference from what I can tell (or from what MOST can tell). 

Just buy some pickups on Ebay and try them.  If you don't like them, sell them on Ebay and you'll loose little to no money.  Seriously.  But caution, it's addicting!  drunken 

Don't bother having someone "make" you a pickup unless you REALLY know what you're after.  And even then you'll need a great pickup maker, who knows exactly what they're doing.  Otherwise it's a waste of time and money, you'll be paying for their education.

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Re: Spectrum ST Pickup EQ>>>

Post by Barry on Thu Oct 03, 2013 9:23 am

What Westbone and Chad said.

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Re: Spectrum ST Pickup EQ>>>

Post by T.M.A. on Thu Oct 03, 2013 9:27 am

Right on THE CHAD. Input much appreciated. I'm getting ready to order a whole whack of stuff and just get the ball rolling. Thanks a bunch guys.

T.M.A.
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Re: Spectrum ST Pickup EQ>>>

Post by The Chad on Thu Oct 03, 2013 9:33 am

I just bought a Dimarzio Super Distortion to put into my Electra X240, or maybe my Electra X935.  I'd also recently purchased a Gibson 500T and Suhr SSH+.  Both are outstanding, I like the 500T better though, more clear and articulate.

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Re: Spectrum ST Pickup EQ>>>

Post by T.M.A. on Thu Oct 03, 2013 9:40 am

right on. I treid the Seymour duncan full shred and found that to be nice and articulate, but no bottom end. The highs and the lows were too reigned in. i sent it back and got a Custom Sh-5 which just just a compressed, bassy mess to me. I'm defnitly after that clarity and articulation, whichh can be a bit difficult for me to find given that I'm tuning so low. Might have to give that gibson 550t a try... I'm emailing warman and gfs right now for their suggestions. I'm also gett a SD custom/59 hybrid in the mail probably today -which i don't have much confidence in...

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Re: Spectrum ST Pickup EQ>>>

Post by T.M.A. on Thu Oct 03, 2013 9:43 am

lookin at these GFS mean 90's right now as well...

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Re: Spectrum ST Pickup EQ>>>

Post by The Chad on Thu Oct 03, 2013 9:44 am

Low tunings are tough, go big and get a Bare Knuckle something or other.  They manufacture specifically for low tunings.  It's worth reaching out to them anyhow.

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Re: Spectrum ST Pickup EQ>>>

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