Santana and HFS/VB pups: Internet vs Real Life

Discussion in 'Electric Instruments' started by sergiodeblanc, Jun 26, 2019.

  1. Shawn@PRS

    Staff Member Moderator

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    Many players use too much gain, I'm guilty of it sometimes as well. Gain is an easy way to hide my crummy playing technique. The problem with the HFS/VB pickups (IMO) is when they are used with too much gain. When used for clean tones or with a small amount of gain, the HFS/VB's are amazing.
     
  2. Tucson Thump

    Tucson Thump Mint Heavy Relic

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    The writer didn't know how to spell. What Abe said was that he was an "Illinoisian".
     
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  3. bodia

    bodia Authorities said.....best leave it.....unsolved

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    The EXACT reason I love tons of gain!
     
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  4. Bowtiefanatc

    Bowtiefanatc Confirmed Bird Snob

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    I'm 100% guilty of not giving the VB/HFS combo a chance in my CU24. The guitar played and felt incredible from day 1, but when I plugged it in I was instantly "offended" by the tone that came from it. (Most likely due to what Shawn said above).
     
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  5. LSchefman

    LSchefman Hears Tones

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    Isn’t that the same thing?

    ;)
     
  6. NBW

    NBW New Member

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    I replaced mine. Probably because I heard so many good things about the BKs and found some cheap on eBay. Now I'm concerned I might buy another PRS and like the 85/15s better.
     
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  7. sergiodeblanc

    sergiodeblanc Get in, loser, we’re going shopping.

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    I’ve found the more guitars I have, the more I want them to be different, and the less I think about swapping pickups.

    This thread was kinda inspired by me thinking about swapping pickups in one of my Santana’s and a CE with the HFS/VB set.
     
  8. sergiodeblanc

    sergiodeblanc Get in, loser, we’re going shopping.

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    I really, really, appreciate that you did though. <3
     
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  9. bodia

    bodia Authorities said.....best leave it.....unsolved

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    I know you do! And it was my pleasure to toss them your way.
     
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  10. sergiodeblanc

    sergiodeblanc Get in, loser, we’re going shopping.

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    They’re here for you should you ever wish to put ‘em back in.
     
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  11. bodia

    bodia Authorities said.....best leave it.....unsolved

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    Nope. I'm all good.
     
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  12. sergiodeblanc

    sergiodeblanc Get in, loser, we’re going shopping.

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    I know, but still...
     
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  13. bodia

    bodia Authorities said.....best leave it.....unsolved

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    ...Of The Night?
     
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  14. sergiodeblanc

    sergiodeblanc Get in, loser, we’re going shopping.

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    If Rudy Sarzo licks the neck, you can just have the whole guitar.
     
  15. Tonart

    Tonart Tone of the Art......or is that backwards?

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    Yes that’s a fact and wholehearted agree :). I am just too much in love with the other side of the equation, the wood side and the inherent side. Kinda like a “fact vs values” thingy, you know what I mean? Like “yeah I know you’re fat but I like your face too much to care”. Anyway, I digress!! This tread should be about pickups :p...
     
  16. shinksma

    shinksma What? I get a title?

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    I've probably mentioned this before, but pickups are a weird trip for me. I played guitar for decades, and never even considered that traditionally-sized HB pups could sound "different". All I cared for was that my strat had the usual SSS config, my tele had that "tele" bridge pickup (also has a HB in the neck), my LP Deluxe had those Epiphone mini-HBs Gibson was trying to use up in the 70s, and I had "normal" HBs in my (don't tell Gibson) El Degas Flying V clone. That Flying V still has them - they are double-cream Dimarzios, and from what I gather could be worth something to certain folks.

    Anyway...before I played PRS, and even after, I didn't give much thought to the particular pickups. I found the tones I wanted by adjusting volume & tone on guitar and amp (and via pedals).

    Now...I still don't really get worked up over it, but I am glad to have a variety of pups in my collection of PRSi including 57/08, 59/09, 85/15, 58/15, HFS/VB. Um, also archtop, SAS, 53/10, probably something else. All stock, except a Santana I have that has Wolfgangs in it (got it that way).

    And Alpha/Omega on my SE Holcomb. And all the variety of SE pups...

    Yet still I buy a guitar for other reasons, I don't think I've ever let the installed pups affect my decision...
     
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  17. AP515

    AP515 Mostly Normal

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    I'm an HFS fan. The HFS/VB were the first set of PRS pickups I had and I developed my sound around them. I love everything about them but it may be because I set up my amps with only those pickups to learn from.

    Use the tone knob people! ;)
     
  18. shallbe

    shallbe New Member

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    I gig my stock Santana II and CU24 AP all the time thru my custom Matchless amp. Both sound amazing.

    I don’t like a lot of compression in humbuckers, and don’t often play with a lot of gain. The stock pickups are wonderful, and I would not ever consider changing them. My CU24 does have an ebony board, so it has a bit more snap and cut naturally.

    Dragon II pickups on the other hand, especially the earlier models, are compressed mush. I replaced those with some PRS Artist pickups and love that guitar now. DII pickups are great if you want a compressed wall of gain and no dynamics. That ain’t me.
     
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  19. sergiodeblanc

    sergiodeblanc Get in, loser, we’re going shopping.

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    See, I love the DII neck pickup. Lower that sucker even with the ring, and bury the pole pieces.... magical.
     
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  20. dogrocketp

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

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    Personally, I liked the VB, but not the HFS in my old CE24. The pickups got switched over to 57/08's when they first came out. My ears told me that the HFS had a ceramic magnet, and I found it ice-picky. I'd be curious to know if I was right. I don't like Ceramic pickups,
     

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