Hello all, this is my first post here, but I have been a long time reader. I had a relatively unique question that I just have not found a decisive answer for just yet.
I am on a quest to replace a pair of Dragon II’s which I have never really cared for. I have always been a fan of the HFS/VB pickups, and I could probably just go that route and be happy. But I want to see if there is something with a very similar tone to the HFS/VB but with perhaps some potentially better attributes for my specific uses.
My predominant music passion is in the hard rock, alternative, and post grunge genres, but I certainly venture into the entire range of rock genres. Some examples of the music I like to play the most are Foo Fighters, Chevelle, Rage Against the Machine, Bush, STP, AIC, Muse, Incubus, and Oasis to name a few.
The guitars that I am fortunate enough to own are a 2004 Custom 22 (original owner) with the Dragon II’s and a 2007 Custom 24 with the HFS/VB which I just picked up this week and is still in transit. The CU22 is now going to be solely dedicated to downtunings, so I am going to have it setup with heavy gauge strings and will use it for a lot of Drop C, Drop B and Drop A# tunings for Chevelle, Tool, etc. kind of stuff. I know the CU24 is technically supposed to be the more appropriate guitar for this kind of stuff, but I like the wide/thin neck so much better than the wide/fat. Standard and Drop D tuning is what I use ~75% of the time, so that is what I want to have the CU24 setup for.
I could go two different ways here. I could look for something different for the CU22, or I could move the HFS/VB from the CU24 to the CU22 and find something “better” for the CU24. Which bring me to the real question(s) here. Is there something that will be marginally better than the HFS/VB specifically for downtuning, heavy rhythm kind of stuff? Alternatively, for standard tuning uses, is there something that has a similar more modern tone and relatively higher output as the HFS/VB but with a little more versatility and relatively better clarity/definition/ less muddy/etc.? I am considering other options besides PRS pickups, and I don’t expect price being an issue with pickups.
Please let me know whatever thoughts and recommendations you might have. Thanks in advance!