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what pickups to get for my ibanez?

Discussion in 'Musicians Corner' started by bball_1523, May 28, 2006.

  1. bball_1523

    bball_1523 Member

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    I was wondering if you guys can please help me get new pickups for my ibanez guitar or possibly suggest a new guitar with good pickups for the style of music I play?

    Currently I have an Ibanez GAX70 black model with stock pickups (powersound).

    http://www.ibanez.com/guitars/guitar.asp?model=GAX70
    <---that's my guitar

    What do I need to know when selecting pickups? I was thinking about either Dimarzio's or Seymour Duncan's.

    I play heavy metal and I want a massive punch you in the face palm muted tone that sounds like Metallica's Master of Puppets, Iced Earth - Stand Alone, and Nevermore - Fault of the Flesh. I know these bands have a variety of reasons why their sound is so powerful, but I want at least some improvement in my own tone, even if it doesn't sound as huge as those bands' tone with all their amp equipment, mixing techniques, etc.

    If I can't really improve my sound, will a new guitar such as an SX SEG1 STD (http://www.rondomusic.net/seg1std.html) work with new pickups?

    thanks
     
  2. Horus

    Horus and his imaginary friend

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    I'd go with the new guitar.
     
  3. Anonymous

    Anonymous L'Étranger

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    Probably EMGs. My cousin had that exact same guitar a few years back, except his was transparent orange.
     
  4. RobbM

    RobbM Another lefty freak...

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    OK, first off, don't buy a crappy guitar such as the Agile, really, its bad. It may look cool, but its all 100% cheap ass parts, especially considering thats a low end model, of a low end company. The GAX70 is mediocre at best, again, thats a fairly low end model guitar. Always remember, "you get what you pay for".

    You can find really good used Ibanez's on ebay in the $250 to $400 range, and they would destroy both guitars you mentioned, and in a lot of cases they already have upgraded pickups (and this costs around $120 + installation if you upgrade your guitar, which you would have to do to either one of those)
     
  5. bball_1523

    bball_1523 Member

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    what if they sound good to me and not others? My current guitar is fine, except it lacks low end punch. I was trying a $400 ESP the other day that had duncan pickups (not sure with kind), and it sounded incredible.

    I've read positive things about Agile too, so if I can get a punchier sound than my current ibanez with an Agile, then I can careless about other guitars.
     
  6. War_Blade

    War_Blade New Metal Member

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    duncans are good for a balls out metal sound. But if you wanna sound like a pro, and have a nice crisp clear sound, for lead playing, i would shoot for dimarzio.

    Trust me, if you want a metal pickup that is great for leading playing and heavy riffing, i would check out the X2N. Then I would put a shred based pickup on your neck like a evo. Which is the exact same combo i have on my guitar and i love them.

    and if you are going to get another guitar, i agree with rob, get a nice used ibanez or the same guitar im using right now
    http://ibanez.com/guitars/guitar.asp?model=RG350DX

    keep in mind, if you get that one, that the stock pickups arn't great (although decent) and you can look to spend and extra $130+ if you wanna replace them

    Edit: also, if you are looking to change you sound, you could try messing around with a few pedals, which usually can get you your desired sound.
     
  7. RobbM

    RobbM Another lefty freak...

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    The problem with Agile is that there quality is really spread out. you could end up getting a good one, or a really, really bad one. All the electronics and bridge are extreamly cheap, as well as the tuners. Because they have to cut corners somewhere in order to make a profit on a guitar that only sells for $120 retail. The guitar might be good when you first get it, but it will most likly not last you more than a few years before falling apart.

    Punchiness and over tone comes mainly from 3 things on the guitar. The most important is the wood that its made out of. Mahogany is about the best for sustain and chunkyness and overall tone (this is THE wood that gives Les Pauls there legendary tone), along with Ash, Hard Maple, Koa and Korina are all along the same lines as Mahogany. Basswood, Alder isn't to bad either, but its a bit more thin sounding, but there the 2 woods used the most on guitars becasue there ultra lightweight and still retain a good sound.. your guitar is made out of Agathis, which a lot of people say sound like mahogany, but they need to lay off the crack pipe. Its a crappy wood that's used a lot in cheap low end guitars, since its such a cheap wood. Its about 1 step away from being plywood. Its so bad that most of, if not all guitar body replacement companys don't use it. (I know Warmoth doesn't)

    Next comes the neck design. in order of best tone to worst: Neck Thru > Set Neck (glued in) > Bolt on. The tone difference between a neck thru and a bolt on can be heard and felt from the first note being played..

    after that I believe pickups are the final tone factor.

    Of course a lot of this is meaningless if your playing thru a crappy amp setup. a $4000 guitar can sound just as bad as a $50 if played thru junk.
     
  8. bball_1523

    bball_1523 Member

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    well my ibanez gax70 has lasted 4.5 years and still sounds decent to me, although I'd love to hear more punch from it, and the guitar does get out of tune slightly everytime I play. But it is definitely playable!

    I just got myself a boss gt-8 and it sounds incredible! I can still get some wicked punchy tones, but I'm wondering how good it will sound with an even better bridge pickup.

    I'll take your advice into consideration though. Do you think the Ibanez RG's are a good buy if I were to get Dimarzio X2N in the bridge?
     
  9. RobbM

    RobbM Another lefty freak...

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    If you got a medium model (such as the 350dx) RG with an X2N in it, you would never play your GAX again...
     
  10. ABQShredHead

    ABQShredHead ©1970

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    My first guitar was a low-end Aria Pro Stray Cat I bought from the music store in the mall. Over time, I upgraded it with a Kahler Flat Mount tremolo and EMG pickups. I suddenly had a ripper guitar that everybody wanted to either steal from me or trade their high-end guitars for. I still have it.

    Morale of the story: When you're starting out playing guitar, cheap is good. You can upgrade or replace as your skills and dedication increase. Some people may buy (or have their rich daddy buy) a $3,000 flame-top Les Paul as their first guitar, become frustrated in two weeks because they have no musical ability, and then never touch the thing again. Others may have a newspaper route for eleven months, earn enough money to buy a cheap-o guitar and amp from the mall, and then spend the next 22 years flogging the shit out of that little gem.
     
  11. wchuck

    wchuck The HypnoToad

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    ibanez (g)rg guitars might be right for you. They are intended to play metal or hard rock. The shark tooth inlays and the pick-ups provide a heavier sound, although I must say that the single coil in the middle is a bit dispensable, at least in my point of view. Of course you have more diverse tunes with this single coil, but for me, those 2 humbuckers are sufficient. And if you have just 2 humbuckers you can even switch them together, what
    might be an advantage for someone who wants a heavy punch sound.

    if you are going to buy a new guitar
    Although they are expensive you should think about getting a Jackson guitar
    or a better ESP, both with some EMG pick-ups, imo some of the best pickups.
     
  12. RobbM

    RobbM Another lefty freak...

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    Errr, I'm a little lost on the "shark tooth inlays = heavier sound" thing..o_O
     
  13. wchuck

    wchuck The HypnoToad

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    yeah, the inlays influence the sound. The bigger, the heavier the tone.
     
  14. War_Blade

    War_Blade New Metal Member

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    ^I have never heard of that, nor do i believe it..
     
  15. RobbM

    RobbM Another lefty freak...

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    no, they don't at all, total myth. Thin little pieces of plastic on the fretboard does nothing to affect the tone. Fretboard material however, does. Maple is brighter, rosewood is the norm, and Ebony is darker, with a little better sustain. Inlays and binding do NOTHING, eccept look cool.
     
  16. M3talManiac

    M3talManiac New Metal Member

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    I have the X2N in the bridge of my rg570 which, might i add is Amazing but im still looking for something in the neck postion now that i have the funds... I hear that the Vai Evolution model is incredible and im probably going to purchase it but here is my question. Does anyone know what the man MJR himself has in the neck position?

    And yeah the single in the middle is useless really... I actualy wired a 3way switch in.
     
  17. RobbM

    RobbM Another lefty freak...

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    Tone Zone..which is funny because it's one of those hidden jem's in the neck position, since it was never designed for anything but the bridge, but it shreds in the neck.
     
  18. bball_1523

    bball_1523 Member

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    I just don't want to add pickups to my ibanez gax70 and then have it sound like garbage. You guys sure it will work if I added lets say a Dimarzio X2N in the bridge?
     
  19. RobbM

    RobbM Another lefty freak...

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    It will most definitely sound different. The output will be much louder and the sound more chunky. But I don't know about what exactly it would sound like in a gax70, cause you know the ol' sayin' "Can't polish a turd"...:lol:
     
  20. ABQShredHead

    ABQShredHead ©1970

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    It will sound fine on any solid-body guitar.

    Now, what it drives will make a huge difference. What are you sending the signal into? (i.e., what amp, effects, etc.)
     

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