Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 37

Thread: 408 Pickups Love Fest

  1. #1

    408 Pickups Love Fest

    You'd think that I'd have played 408s a long time ago, but I got to the party late. Still, it's one heckuva jam! These are stunning sounding pickups (Twinfan is rolling his eyes and going, "Hey, Les, I've been saying that for the last year or more"). OK, I get it now.

    Quick impressions:

    My favorite bridge pickup has been the 57/08 on an SC58 or Stripped 58. The 408 bridge pickup has all of that woodiness, transparency, clarity, and tone, plus a great coil tap that really does sound like a first-class single coil. The pickup is highly responsive to pick attack, it handles volume and treble rolloff beautifully to get a huge range of color, it can be bright, or classic, or whatever you want.

    The tapped single coil mode sounds a lot like the bucker mode, but it's got more top end, and sounds a little more open, just like a good single coil ought to. The wonderful news is that the bucker has a huge range of tones, however its "base" sound is a great starting point, which can't be said for all humbuckers by other companies.

    The neck pickup is phenomenal, too. I've never heard a neck pickup on any other electric guitar that can respond to the pick as subtly as the one on my 53/10 equipped SC58, until playing with this 408 neck pickup. But it can go pushed and dirty, too. The bass response sits right between my A-V's neck pickup, which isn't very bassy, and the SC58s, which by virtue of the guitar's design pulls a lot of bass.

    So I get all of the tone, and yet don't overload the bass end as much, which means less EQ when recording.

    I've seen some comments that the split coils sound close to the buckers -- well, the overtones are clearly different, and it's easy to hear that with any clean amp. I'm using the HXDA, and it cleans up really well with the volume on the guitar.

    All in all, I think these pickups are fantastic, and I'd say that if you can only have one PRS, get one equipped with 408 pickups and you can cover all the bases.

    Just great stuff! A special thanks to Twinfan for his reporting on these and piquing my interest.

    Edit:

    One thing I forgot to mention: These pickups may be a modern design, but they have a ton of personality. I really love the way they sound! Not in the least bit sterile or bland. Just nice all the way around.

    Also - you can dial a lot of sounds in, and control the tone very well with the controls on the guitar, which I think is important with any guitar, and that's also true of these pickups. Use the knobs!
    Last edited by LSchefman; 01-16-2013 at 06:47 PM.

  2. #2
    408 Sig Club President Twinfan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    England
    Posts
    456
    Hey, Les, I've been saying that for the last year or more!!!!!!

    Glad you like 'em, I think they're the best pickups ever produced. Period. Let us all know how you get on with them in your recording sessions etc. I only use them live (I don't record) where I think they really excel, but it'd be good to hear how you get on with them.

    Wait until you try them in a Collection guitar, if you ever get chance....

  3. #3
    Well the timing is great. because I have an ad session tomorrow that calls for a clean, clear guitar sound. So these should be just what the doctor ordered.

    As for a Collection guitar...la la la la I can't hear you!

    Seriously, the Sig is more than sufficient for my needs.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Woundtight's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Posts
    386
    I love them in my new ride:



    Everything Les sez is true. Also when you roll back the tone you get a slightly out phase honk, like a sweet switch.
    I am impressed!

  5. #5
    Senior Member Dirty Bob's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    State of Confusion (NY)
    Posts
    1,866
    Quote Originally Posted by Woundtight View Post
    I love them in my new ride:



    Everything Les sez is true. Also when you roll back the tone you get a slightly out phase honk, like a sweet switch.
    I am impressed!
    that is just sexy! Mmmmm Hmmmmm!
    -Bob

  6. #6
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    pioneer valley
    Posts
    268
    Quote Originally Posted by Twinfan View Post
    Hey, Les, I've been saying that for the last year or more!!!!!!

    Glad you like 'em, I think they're the best pickups ever produced. Period. Let us all know how you get on with them in your recording sessions etc. I only use them live (I don't record) where I think they really excel, but it'd be good to hear how you get on with them.

    Wait until you try them in a Collection guitar, if you ever get chance....
    MR FAN, They sound good in a PINE 2/4 !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  7. #7
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Posts
    368
    It wasn't clear from your post Les what guitar you have 408s in. Signature Limited? In any case, it's really curious to me how the reaction to these has been so binary. Like your experience, the 408s in my Signature Limited really shine in the single coil mode. There have been plenty of folks though who are looking for a strat-like sound in single coil mode who haven't been happy. Maybe it's sort of like chasing a plexi tone. Everybody has a different thing in their mind when they say plexi. But roll a bit off of the volume, and the 408 (in all single coil positions) is the pure single coil strat tone that I'd recognize from a mile away. Only thing I can think of is that the output of the 408 in single coil mode is a bit hotter (I think) and maybe depending on the amp and the setup, full on, it takes a bit away from the stratti-ness of it all.

    The only guitar that I can think of that's more flexible (from any brand) is the 513. Not to take away from the 513, but the humbucker mode of the 408s is probably more to most people's liking, leaving the signature limited (and probably other 408 equipped guitars) the king of the flexible heap.

  8. #8
    Love Boat Captain butterfly's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Posts
    247
    Very cool Les. Great to hear. And Woundtight your guitar is beautiful.

  9. #9
    Woundtight, that guitar is off the chart! I love it!

    Quote Originally Posted by aristotle View Post
    It wasn't clear from your post Les what guitar you have 408s in. Signature Limited? In any case, it's really curious to me how the reaction to these has been so binary.
    Yes, a Signature Limited, I should have been more clear. Very lively axe, by the way...even played acoustically it's got all kinds of sustain and snap!

    And I couldn't agree with you more; these pickups sounded great from the very first note, and it only got better from there as I began to dial in sounds.

    Quote Originally Posted by aristotle View Post
    Like your experience, the 408s in my Signature Limited really shine in the single coil mode. There have been plenty of folks though who are looking for a strat-like sound in single coil mode who haven't been happy. Maybe it's sort of like chasing a plexi tone. Everybody has a different thing in their mind when they say plexi. But roll a bit off of the volume, and the 408 (in all single coil positions) is the pure single coil strat tone that I'd recognize from a mile away. Only thing I can think of is that the output of the 408 in single coil mode is a bit hotter (I think) and maybe depending on the amp and the setup, full on, it takes a bit away from the stratti-ness of it all.

    The only guitar that I can think of that's more flexible (from any brand) is the 513. Not to take away from the 513, but the humbucker mode of the 408s is probably more to most people's liking, leaving the signature limited (and probably other 408 equipped guitars) the king of the flexible heap.
    I can only guess that certain players have a little trouble dialing in their amps, or maybe don't really use the controls on the guitar? Hard to know without being there and hearing what folks are hearing.

    This is indeed a very flexible and toneful set of pickups, that is for sure. And the obligatory shot of the pickups:

    Last edited by LSchefman; 01-16-2013 at 10:08 PM.

  10. #10
    Junior Member dprather's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Posts
    94
    I fell in love with the 408s instantly, glad to see another convert to the cult!

  11. #11
    Senior Member sergiodeblanc's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Downers Grove Il.
    Posts
    6,352
    Man Les, if I didn't know better I would say you are one your way to a PRS collection.

  12. #12
    408 Sig Club President Twinfan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    England
    Posts
    456
    Collection V, Collection V, Collection V.

    It's all the guitar you'll ever need.....

  13. #13
    From the descriptions I've read so far, especially the ones complaining that the 408T is too bright, I would really like to try one out. My amp (Mesa Roadster) is quite dark sounding and it helps if the guitar has something that allows it to cut through. For instance, my SC250 has a bright and hot treble pickup that cuts through very well. The DGT Std cuts through because it is a very midrangey instrument (all mahogany).

    Maybe the ideal guitar would be a 408 Standard?

    Oh and Les: thanks for the tone report! Very pretty guitar too!
    Alex

  14. #14
    408 Sig Club President Twinfan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    England
    Posts
    456
    I've not seen folks complaining that the 408MT is too bright. Have they not heard of tone controls and amp EQ settings????

  15. #15
    No idea, but I did read such complaints.

    Just remembered though that the 408 has the blade switch

    Would prefer a good old toggle...
    Alex

  16. #16
    408 Sig Club President Twinfan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    England
    Posts
    456
    Blade is a deal breaker for me.

  17. #17
    Almost was a FG22 owner.. WEDGE's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Too close to the casinos in CT.........
    Posts
    1,731
    Quote Originally Posted by Twinfan View Post
    I've not seen folks complaining that the 408MT is too bright. Have they not heard of tone controls and amp EQ settings????
    I have mentioned the brightness and when going from any other guitar it jumps in brightness fairly dramatically. I hate to readjust my amp each guitar change and rolling off the tone does tame it somewhat but I still get that squeak from the strings and the spike in highs. I do need to clip the bright cap and try that.


    I have also lowered the pups all the way to the rings and still the same thing. Changed strings too and that did not affect it.

    otherwise LOVE the guitar and don't mind at all the blade switch.
    ​Secretary of Crackwood Addiction

  18. #18
    408 Sig Club President Twinfan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    England
    Posts
    456
    All guitars are unique, so I think it's not a fair generalisation to say that all 408 guitars are bright. Mine vary a bit, so the wood makes a difference as you would expect.

  19. #19
    Senior Member veinbuster's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    GTA, or PA, or vacation
    Posts
    2,367
    Quote Originally Posted by Twinfan View Post
    Collection V, Collection V, Collection V.

    It's all the guitar you'll ever need.....
    I still want one of the international edition.

  20. #20
    Almost was a FG22 owner.. WEDGE's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Too close to the casinos in CT.........
    Posts
    1,731
    To be fair I have never generalized all 408's but only gave my own unique experience and asked others for their own experience. I am quite sure that after hearing the responses which are overwhelmingly positive for them, including my own other than them being bright, and listening to the videos online that my experience is an anomoly which I will work through.

    No worries, I never intended to disparage a 408 pup.
    ​Secretary of Crackwood Addiction

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •