Old SC 245 owners, what are the pickups like?

Discussion in 'Electric Instruments' started by Beery Swine, Dec 4, 2019.

  1. Beery Swine

    Beery Swine New Member

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    I went searching for this topic, but couldn't seem to find anything on the pickups specifically. Any owners of a 2000s era SC245 in here? What were those pickups like? I ask because I'm considering buying a used one and would like to know ahead of time what they're like. Any other pickups on the market they sound similar too? I know there's a few charts that have some basic PRS pickup specs, but that doesn't really tell you the tone, know what I mean? The McCarty pickups in my first and so far only American made guitar sound crunchy and killer af.
     
  2. Tim S

    Tim S King of the barre chord

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    Will the quality of the stock pickups determine whether or not you'll buy the 245? If so, you know you can replace the pickups, right?

    If not, what difference does it make? Get the guitar and use your own ears. If you like the stock pickups, great! If not, you have the opportunity to replace them with ones you are more familiar with -- make it yours.

    I respect the members here, but I wouldn't trust their descriptions, likes or dis-likes of particular pickups. I'd rather trust my own ears. Heck, we can't even agree on which sounds better -- 22-fret or 24-fret guitars. ;)
     
  3. Beery Swine

    Beery Swine New Member

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    No, but I'd still like to know, and it would alleviate some anxiety if I purchase the guitar. A larger purchase always has me sweating, even tho 6 months later I don't even think about or care about the money spent on an item like this which I love and use all the time.
     
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  4. AP515

    AP515 Mostly Normal

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    245's were the first step towards the 57/08's that were really well received by the PRS community. They were really good, but some of course didn't think much of them. You can't please everyone. If you have heard a Mira, they are actually just covered Mira pickups, but since the Mira is thinner and all Hog, they end up sounding pretty different.

    My take on them is they are a classic sounding pickup. Not super PAF'y but in that ball park. They do go well in the SC.
     
  5. Geo408

    Geo408 New Member

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    I have the 245’s in my Special 22, and I’ve found them to be very versatile. I can cover just about anything except maybe hard core metal, but I think I could even make that work, with the right pedals and amps. They work well with my vintage Marshall, and Fender amps, and even with a club supplied back line amp, like a Fender hot rod, or even a twin reverb. So yeah, pretty versatile, all in all.
     
  6. Johnny Rigs

    Johnny Rigs Have you tried restarting?

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    You might check out Leon Todd’s YouTube channel. He does a lot with both Axe FX and tube amps, and his main guitar is a black SC245 with stock pickups. Might give you taste of what they sound like.
     
  7. jak3af3r

    jak3af3r Slightly Older Than New Member

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    I have 245's in my hollow body and (obviously) McCarty's in my McCarty semi-hollow. 2009 for the HB and the McCarty is a '97. I prefer the McCarty I think just because they breathe a little more. The neck pickups sound very similar but the bridge is different. The hollow body can cop the Santana tone fairly easily while the McCarty can do the LP screening bridge better (sounds like Zeppelin or Robben Ford through a dumble clone.)

    I've toyed with the idea of replacing the 245's in the HB buy don't know what I'd put in. And then I'll play a show and get a really good monitor mix so they've stayed.
     
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  8. Beery Swine

    Beery Swine New Member

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    That last part is key. PAF pickups sound great on channel 3 of a Mesa Mark IVa amp. With pickups today, output isn't nearly as important as tone. Any even kinda remotely modern high gain amp can get metal out of strat pickups, but to get a classic rock tone out of a JMP using EMG 81s is damn near impossible.
     
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  9. Herr Squid

    Herr Squid I was severely impressed

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    I had those pickups in my 2009-ish Singlecut Hollowbody and thought they were good rawk pickups. I remember them being hotter and bassier than McCarty pickups, and thought they weren't really the right pickup for a hollow guitar. But I would've left 'em in a solidbody.
     
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  10. Herr Squid

    Herr Squid I was severely impressed

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    He does tune it to Drop C or something silly like that. It does sound good though. I'd recommend Leon for pretty much all the reasons.
     
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  11. Johnny Rigs

    Johnny Rigs Have you tried restarting?

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    Oh that's right. He's always in Drop C with it. Forgot to mention that, thank you.
     
  12. dogrocketp

    dogrocketp I drank the PRS kool aid, and it was tasty!

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    Some of the 245's have 57/08's, depending on the year. My suggestion would be to buy the guitar. If you can get the serial number from the seller, you can look it up and find out. I played with someone who had the 245 pickups in his SC guitar. They were beefy, brawny and had amazing sound. Like an LP on steroids.
     
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  13. Andy80

    Andy80 New Member

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    Mine is an 09 245... They're OK, they sound better with gain than they do clean in my opinion. I have been considering switching them to 5708's, but I've also been considering trading this guitar in for another PRS of some kind because this guitar doesn't really have the sound I'm currently after. The problem I have with this guitar, and i'm not sure if it has to do with the pups, is that the low end is lacking quite a bit for my tastes. I much prefer my LP. I also think the 594 kills this guitar. While the playability of the guitar is great, there's something about it that just doesn't do it for me. That said other people will like them a lot no doubt.
     
  14. Rider1260

    Rider1260 New Member

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    245/ Mira pickups sound Killer similar in output to the 59/09 I have them in my SCT and DGT the DGT with the 245s might be the best sounding recorded guitar I own and the tapped sound is top notch also. I like the brighter / clearer sound of these in darker bigger bodied guitars best.
     
  15. Beery Swine

    Beery Swine New Member

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    Update time. Well, the Christmas spirit broke me down and now I have an SC 245 from 2007. One thing the owner didn't mention and the headstock pics didn't show is that it's a 10 top. That was a nice bonus to see when I opened it up. The pics didn't do the top justice.
    I definitely won't be changing these pickups, they sound pretty much just like McCartys to my ear. Does anyone know if they use A4 magnets in these? As similar as this and my McCarty sound, I can't imagine any other magnet being used. Love it. LOVE it. Definitely needs new strings and a fretboard wipe, plus I scrubbed off some residue which had probably collected on the body and neck for a decade.
    There's a fair amount of wear and tear on the cosmetics, some finish chips, and the top of the headstock even looks just slightly cracked like it had been dropped on it, but nothing to interfere with functionality. How the hell do guitarists treat expensive gear like this as if it's just a sandwich you got at a deli or something? Just tossing it around like a rubber ball, like Rocky Balboa moseying along down the streets of Philly. Whatever, their loss is my gain, I get gear for cheaper which is still in 100% working order.
    Incidentally, this video helped a little in making the decision:
     
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  16. danktat

    danktat Award winning tattoo artist ... Amateur guitarist

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    Hmmm....I have never seen this video before. Really does a great job at giving an idea as to what a skilled player can do with each of the variations on PRS fiddles. I am a Cu22 guy myself. And I like my Dragon 2s. Being played right next to some 57/08s I can see what the fuss is all about with the cleans....but I actually still preferred the lead tone out of the D2s.

    I'll tell you what. How about I just take all of those instruments and that can be my "collection" of PRS guitars! I don't think I could go wrong with that......lol
     
  17. elvis

    elvis Hamfisted String Banger

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    The guitars are awesome. The 245 pickups were anemic and dull to my tastes. With something a bit more lively the guitar kills.

    i went with BKP Cold Sweats. You could go 57/08 and it would slay. I love the 58/15 set in my P245 as well.
     
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  18. Beery Swine

    Beery Swine New Member

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    Is there a single guitarist in the world who makes at least enough to get by who only owns a single guitar? If you can find him or her, you can probably find a unicorn.
    Nah, I like the SC 245s, they sound great. At some point it'd be nice to get 2 newer McCartys 594s, one with 58/15s and the other with LTs. But even the older used 594s are still pretty expensive for my budget.
     
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  19. danktat

    danktat Award winning tattoo artist ... Amateur guitarist

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    I know I have already replied to this thread but I have watched this video SEVERAL times since that reply. My god, where was this at. It has to be the best comparison video I have seen. AND, on the youtube page you can just click on the links to listen to similar styles of play, with similar settings, so you can get at true A/B back to back. And he covered most of the ones people talk about (at least for the time frame this was recorded).

    My conclusion was that they ALL sounded sick in their own way. It is just a matter of what and how you play, and then what you like. When those two merge, THOSE are the pups (or guitar for that matter) for you.
     
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  20. Basauri

    Basauri Diamonds x Guitars deal with Paul

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    I have a 2007 sc245 with 245s. They are “overwound paf” with alnico 5. Too hot for vintage sound, weak for high gain. I swapped magnets to alnico4 to get them in the vintage ballpark, but they stood nowhere between worlds. Recently I put a JB in bridge position and now I’m happier. At least now I can say “this guitar is for high gain”.
    For me, good quality pickups but without concrete purpose.
     

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