Old SC 245 owners, what are the pickups like?

Beery Swine

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I have a 2007 sc245 with 245s. They are “overwound paf” with alnico 5.
After I restrung it and cleaned it up yesterday, it was apparent that they weren't McCartys. The SC 245s have less mids, more highs, and a touch more output. I suspected they might be A2s or A5s based on that. Also the spacing on the bridge's pole pieces aren't any different from the neck's, probably going for that exact spacing tone from a certain time period.
Too hot for vintage sound, weak for high gain.
To you really need a pickup to be louder today because there's not enough distortion on a high gain amp like a Mesa? Do you really need a pickup to be on 10 at all times? For me, at least, the answer to both of these questions is "no". Literally, just put the volume on 9 for a "PAF"ier output. Also, some of those PAFs WERE overwound. Gibson employees didn't have set amounts of turns for them, they just turned on the machines, went to lunch, came back, and whatever was there was good enough.
 

Basauri

Diamonds x Guitars deal with Paul
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To you really need a pickup to be louder today because there's not enough distortion on a high gain amp like a Mesa? Do you really need a pickup to be on 10 at all times? For me, at least, the answer to both of these questions is "no". Literally, just put the volume on 9 for a "PAF"ier output. Also, some of those PAFs WERE overwound. Gibson employees didn't have set amounts of turns for them, they just turned on the machines, went to lunch, came back, and whatever was there was good enough.

No. In fact, I use my guitar volume A LOT MORE than booster/overdrive pedals, and PAFs don’t respond like a high gain pickup and viceversa. Different attack sensitivity, different response when rolling up or down the volume, different hitting to amp front end. 245s, imho, are neither one thing nor the other.
 

gush

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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. ;)


Well that's partially true. If you can find out how a person runs their guitar or even what kind of music they play or the amp they use sometimes that can help determine where their opinion comes from.

Kind of
 

Bluesverb

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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.

The 245 PUPS are around the same genre as Gibson 500Ts as found in the Les Paul Classics of the 90's. Tremontis are in the same ball park. Mark was playing Les Pauls with 500ts in the 90s before PRS got a hold of him. He went through a few different prototypes and I believe by the 3rd set of them he was happy.

The Core Miras and the Core SC-245s were going head to head with the SG and the Les Paul. I read that the 245 PUPS were an attempt at 57/08s and they were not.
If you like the 245s then you might like the #7 bridge PUP.

My opinion will only be valid if you compare a Les Paul Classic, a SC-245 and a Tremonti. They are designed for higher gain amps. Pinch harmonics scream with my EVH Heads. I have all three and they are in the same "ball park".
 
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Beery Swine

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The 245 PUPS are around the same genre as Gibson 500Ts
Not even close. I remember playing Gibson Vs and Explorers in the late 90s a lot at shops, they all had 496R and 500T combos, those pups were metal af. The SC 245s are nowhere near that output or tone, they sound like overwound SD '59s to me, but with just a little less mid, maybe slightly less high.
 

SKiNFreak

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Sorry to resurrect a horrendously old thread but I have a set of 245s. I’m wondering based on the above whether or not it is similar if not the basis for the Tremonti neck pick up? I’ve been considering the options for my Tremonti SE. I think that I might just split the set and use the neck only, with a modified 498T in the bridge (I plan on swapping magnets ).
 

Basauri

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For me, they sounded fine but not too warm/vintage. They are not gainy pickups despite the measures (8.31 and 9.04 k) I usually modify stock pickups instead of changing them, so I decided to swap magnets from alnico V (stock) to alnico IV (my favorite). Now they sound awesome, for me, of course.
 

tdarian

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I still have the stock pickups in my 2008 SC245. I haven’t had a compelling urge to change them although I’ve been curious how 5708s might sound in that guitar. I have 5708s in a ‘08 Korina McCarty and they are excellent but the stock McCarty pickups were fine in that one, too.

One non-electronics change I made to the SC245 was a swap to Schroeder locking bridge studs. They’re brass and have more mass than the stock studs. Besides the locking characteristic the tone changed a bit...sweeter on the high strings and single notes were slightly bigger/fatter with better sustain.

I’m trying a Mann adjustable bridge, so far so good although I didn’t like it as much with the way better looking Mann polished brass studs, so the Schroeders are back on.

I’ve got an R6 and also a R7, the SC245 hangs with both.
 

dogrocketp

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Schroeder parts are grossly underrated in my book. The boat tail adjustable bridge is an ergonomic dream for palm muting. And I put the studs on all my stoptails.
 
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elvis

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Sorry to resurrect a horrendously old thread but I have a set of 245s. I’m wondering based on the above whether or not it is similar if not the basis for the Tremonti neck pick up? I’ve been considering the options for my Tremonti SE. I think that I might just split the set and use the neck only, with a modified 498T in the bridge (I plan on swapping magnets ).

I would put them as similar to the Tremonti neck.
 

boardn10

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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.
I see some SC245s with 245 pickups and some with 57/8. Is the 245 an anniversary pickup?
 

boardn10

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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.
Yep, drop tunings like that do sound great, so rich and complex, warm. Interesting what a tuning can do. Half step down always sounds amazing.
 

Herr Squid

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I see some SC245s with 245 pickups and some with 57/8. Is the 245 an anniversary pickup?
The 245s were an ordinary production pickup, a step in the evolution towards the current line of pickups. They were considered desirable for about a year I think, then PRS hit on the 57/08s which were a huge step forward. I'd take 57/08s over 245s all day every day.
 

bodia

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The 245s were an ordinary production pickup, a step in the evolution towards the current line of pickups. They were considered desirable for about a year I think, then PRS hit on the 57/08s which were a huge step forward. I'd take 57/08s over 245s all day every day.
Ditto
 

boardn10

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The 245s were an ordinary production pickup, a step in the evolution towards the current line of pickups. They were considered desirable for about a year I think, then PRS hit on the 57/08s which were a huge step forward. I'd take 57/08s over 245s all day every day.
Cool, and is that the two piece stop tail version?

You know, some early PRS pickups are incredible. My original Dragons are simply amazing to my ears and so were my McCarty pickups. Didn't like Dragon IIs as much.
Love SC250s and Tremontis. So fat, dark and thick. My style... :)
 

tdarian

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I still have the stock SC245 pickups in my 2008 SC245 (Stoptail wrap bridge). I’ve had it since ‘09, will likely go with either 5708s or something from Wolfetone
 

boardn10

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I still have the stock SC245 pickups in my 2008 SC245 (Stoptail wrap bridge). I’ve had it since ‘09, will likely go with either 5708s or something from Wolfetone
Nice, hope you like the guitar.

I'm looking at a 2009 SC245 with stock 57/08 pickups, wraparound bridge and nitro finish. Tempted.

Are they weight relieved?

I play a lot of heavier, and often drop tuned music so I worry the shorter scale will not ha dle the heavies and defined as well as my SC250 or CE22. Then again, My LP handles it well
 

boardn10

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Anyone know why some SC250 models have adjustable ridges and some not? Also, some have open cool pickups and some have nickel covered pickups?
Why the variances?
 

tdarian

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Nice, hope you like the guitar.

I'm looking at a 2009 SC245 with stock 57/08 pickups, wraparound bridge and nitro finish. Tempted.

Are they weight relieved?

I play a lot of heavier, and often drop tuned music so I worry the shorter scale will not ha dle the heavies and defined as well as my SC250 or CE22. Then again, My LP handles it well
Good on the 5708s, I have a set from 2009 in a Korina McCarty and they are excellent.

The SC245s were weight relieved at least mine is. It’s 8 pounds even. I actually prefer it’s tone over my R7, and it’s either the SC245 or my ‘07 R6 that I grab most of the time for humbucker guitars.

My SC245 feels slightly slinkier than the Les Pauls, but a lot of that is related to the stainless 6100 type frets that have been on it for years. The actual scale length differential is .094.
 
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