Please help: PRS 58/15 LT vs high-end single coils?

MrSuperstar

Blues Lawyer
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Feb 25, 2021
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Napoli, Italy
Hi guys,
I've long fallen in love with the sound of 58/15 LT pickups, so much so that Iìve ordered them on a PRS that will soon arrive at my home.
IMVHO 58/15 LT are the pickups that most resemble the PAFs of the Gibson "golden era", as can be heard in this video.

Having said that for the "humbucker side", I've a question for you about these pickups when they are splitted into single coils.
Can these pickups holds up the comparison with high-end single coils (example: Lollar; Fender CS Josephina Handwound; Seymour Duncan Antiquity; etc)?
I just want objective opinions because I really love the sound of single coils and I wouldn't want to be disappointed :confused:
 

Simon Says

A Dentist for the Lawyers
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I can only speak for 85/15 and 59/09 in split mod. And as much as they decent - they far from Lollars 64's or any other decent single coils. IMO good enough for single coil vibe, nothing more than that
 

Ovibos

Naughty Wood Librarian
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Jan 9, 2015
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Wilmette, IL
I know resistance values aren't the be-all, end-all of what makes up a sound buuuuuut.....

A classic PAF-ish pickup is ~7.5k, splitting it gets you ~3.75k - signifcantly less than the ~6k of a standard single-coil. The PRS resistor-based partial tap should get it closer tho.
 

Simon Says

A Dentist for the Lawyers
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Dec 21, 2012
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It wouldn't be fair if I wont say that splits in my 35th anniversary are one off (really trying hard to find anything better) splits I heard in dual HB guitar. These are multitap with additional capacitor which sets a portion of a coil signal to ground and finally polishing spiky top end in a split mod. So to summarise - Crème Brûlée of single coils? Nah! The most decent HB splits? Yessir!

I'm coming from a Strat world and I won't be shy to call myself a Stratocaster lover. My first guitar was a strat and I somehow alway finding my way back to one. Saying that - my CU24 was bought as it give me best of both worlds and as much I live mostly in either bridge or neck HB I do use my guitar with splits often
 

Mozzi

https://imgur.com/user/BAMozzy/posts
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Jun 2, 2018
Messages
3,847
Hi guys,
I've long fallen in love with the sound of 58/15 LT pickups, so much so that Iìve ordered them on a PRS that will soon arrive at my home.
IMVHO 58/15 LT are the pickups that most resemble the PAFs of the Gibson "golden era", as can be heard in this video.

Having said that for the "humbucker side", I've a question for you about these pickups when they are splitted into single coils.
Can these pickups holds up the comparison with high-end single coils (example: Lollar; Fender CS Josephina Handwound; Seymour Duncan Antiquity; etc)?
I just want objective opinions because I really love the sound of single coils and I wouldn't want to be disappointed :confused:

If you are expecting a 'Les Paul' type guitar with 'true' split Single Coils to sound like a Strat/Tele, then you are NEVER going to be 'happy'

Even if you could put 'High End' single Coils into a PRS, the completely different 'build' will give a 'different' sound. I don't care whether or not you 'believe' the woods make a difference, the set neck, scale length, bridge etc all contribute to the 'sound'.

That I think is the 'biggest' issue. When People think 'Single Coil', they think purely of the 'Strat' sound and unless it sounds like a Strat, no 'Single Coil' sound is 'good enough'. However, if you [could] put a Strat SC into a LP for example, the SC would sound more like a 'split' humbucker because its a 'single' coil (like a Split) with the 'same' guitar, same materials, same 'build', same area of the stings to 'pick-up' etc.

Therefore if you 'expect' a completely different build of a guitar to sound like a Strat when you split the HB's, you will be 'disappointed'. However, if you are more 'open minded', then you'll find that the 'SC' sounds have their 'own' and 'useful' sound that's 'different' to a Strat. Great in 'band' situations when a HB is 'too' thick that the mix is a bit muddy for example - the Split cuts through better for example. A Split on HB should be taken as 'additional' options, not as a replacement for a completely different type of instrument they can clearly never replicate.
 

doublescale1

doublescale1
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Dec 31, 2020
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110
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far east side of Detroit
Mozzi knows of what he speaks. I have those 58/15LT's in my DC 594 and they do sound "almost" like a Tele single coil, but not really all the way there if you were to solo that guitar in the mix; but to Mozzi's point in a full band mix, when split, they will cut through for rhythm way better. I play in a Classic R&B/Motown 9 piece horn band and for funk strum/Cropper chord partials the split 58/15LT's get the job done exceedingly well; the live recordings of our band from gigs confirm this for me. I do have a Cusack "More Louder" mini clean boost on my board to get the split 58/15LT's back up to full HB volume without having to mess with the amp live. The qualifier "live mix" is important since whatever compromise the split 58/15LT's are with respect to a true single coil PU, I've found it well worth the slight difference when playing live to be able to get way closer to the type of guitar voice the song calls for without having to change guitars mid-set (life with out a guitar tech to hand you the next guitar between songs). I'd never use any split HB in a recording session for critical listening and try to pass it off as a single coil, but live it works better than most any other HB when split, the song will sound right and the dance floor stays full. A full dance floor is a club managers wish realized - keep playing that rock & roll.
 

Bowtiefanatc

Confirmed Bird Snob
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Mar 29, 2014
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Denver, CO
What about real single coils and real humbucker? ;)


uGCxTJN.jpg
 

RonHal

New Member
Joined
May 3, 2012
Messages
40
You can "improve" the single coil sound by adding a capacitor in the circuit. But it will never sound like a true single coil. Its more of a tonal option.
I did this on my MEII with 57/08. First, there is no volume loss compared with the humbucker. Second it sounds fuller. Third, the tonality is different which is why you may not like the "improvement". To repeat what has been said, only a single coil will sound like a single coil.
 

Uncle Bob

New Member for almost a year...
Joined
Mar 2, 2021
Messages
372
My C24 has 58/15 LT+ in it and they sound utterly delicious, for my tastes anyway. But then I’m an absolute sucker for position 4 on an HSS equipped axe, too.

While some PRS models should offer quite a lot of tonal variety, say a Studio, or maybe a 24-08 setup, I’d probably just look at an HSS equipped guitar rather than worry about whether a split HB is going to sound right. Horses for courses...
 

Simon Says

A Dentist for the Lawyers
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Dec 21, 2012
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1,350
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UK
First of all thank you all for your answers.
I really appreciated the fact that you weren't "fanboys", but rather very honest and kind people in explaining to me that a splitted HB cannot sound like a SC.

I decided to get a Strat to pair with my PRS McCarty 594 HB II

As much as I love my 35th anniversary I may actually go and do the same. Although I still considering Fiore a little...

What strat are you getting?
 
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