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Thread: Can the Brent Mason be improved?

  1. #1
    Senior Member Tosca's Avatar
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    Can the Brent Mason be improved?

    I think everyone here knows that on a cost/versatility ratio...it's hard, maybe impossible, to beat a PRS Brent Mason Sig. Posted previously one I picked up barely used for a great deal. When I save some $$$ on a great guitar makes me think "how could I make it even better?"


    It's hard to improve on a guitar this perfect/versatile. My only minor quibbles with it were:
    1) that middle 305 kinda got in my way...in a way it doesn't on my 513.
    2) with the "In between" positions with the middle 305 and bridge/neck 408's the 305 was just overpowered (sounded great by itself).
    3) more oomph from bridge pickup would be nice for solos....
    4) being a huge Gilmour fan...B/N and B/M/N would be nice...please.

    Thanks the prior experiences from JustMund and Hippietim, and the super expertise of the PTC (thanks Matt especially), I was able to fullfil all of these wishes...for total cost less than a new Brent Mason. Not sure if I should call it the "Beast Mason" or the "Brent Monster".
    Last edited by Tosca; 05-03-2014 at 10:56 PM.
    “It's easier to fool people than to convince them that they have been fooled.”
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  2. #2
    Senior Member Tosca's Avatar
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    So here she is....the "Beast Mason" or "Brent Monster"......


    Bridge PU changed to full size 408.
    Former narrow bridge 408 moved to middle position.
    Additional mini-toggle to allow SC/HB switching of each PU.
    P/P tone pot adds neck pickup in any position.
    And of course...awesome setup by PTC...super professional work all around.
    Thanks again Matt, JustMund and HippieTim...this one does it all.
    “It's easier to fool people than to convince them that they have been fooled.”
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  3. #3
    Plank Spanker justmund's Avatar
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    Dude that is out-freaking-standing! Very well done! Interested to hear your thoughts on the narrow vs. wide 408 in the bridge. You may be the first and only person to have both in the exact same guitar

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    Senior Member sergiodeblanc's Avatar
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    Senior Member jfine's Avatar
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    Tosca--that's very cool! I've been wanting to have a push-pull on the tone pot on mine for the add-neck-pickup function as well, and a little more output on the neck and bridge pickups wouldn't be a bad thing either. I'm intrigued by that large 408 bridge pickup--how does it differ from the stock pickup? It seems like it might be a little fatter, but that's what I don't want--if anything, I'd like to get a little more Tele-ness from the bridge single-coil setting.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Tosca's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by justmund View Post
    Dude that is out-freaking-standing! Very well done! Interested to hear your thoughts on the narrow vs. wide 408 in the bridge. You may be the first and only person to have both in the exact same guitar
    Thanks...and thanks again for the inspiration. I've been wanting to outfit a PRS with 3x 408's ever since first seeing your DC3 mod. There are a few PS studio signatures with this pickup config around (although I believe they used 2 narrow 408B's and not a 408T in the middle position), so technically this isn't the first. I really like the fuller sound of the "widebody" 408 in this guitar. The narrow 408 has a nice "bite" in the bridge of a Paul's, but with the added upper midrange emphasis of the Korina in this guitar it was a little too thin sounding for the bridge HB tones I like. I can now go back and forth between my Paul's and this without changing amp/EQ settings (these two and a P24 are my main players right now). As an unexpected benefit the bridge 408 split with the neck on HB sounds incredible. Very rich wide-frequency response...my new favorite for clean rhythm work, outstanding note separation with equal emphasis across all frequencies. I loved this guitar before...now it's just killer.
    “It's easier to fool people than to convince them that they have been fooled.”
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    Senior Member veinbuster's Avatar
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    Now that is sweet.

  8. #8
    Senior Member Tosca's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jfine View Post
    I'm intrigued by that large 408 bridge pickup--how does it differ from the stock pickup? It seems like it might be a little fatter, but that's what I don't want--if anything, I'd like to get a little more Tele-ness from the bridge single-coil setting.
    Bigger bridge 408 is "fatter" more wide frequency response which I think balances better with the Korina/Maple. Tele bridge SC sounds are probably not enhanced by this modification. I really like the Tele neck HB and neck HB/bridge SC combo sounds, this setup excels at those. I'm more of a "fat strat" than "Tele twang" type of guy. Had no problem with the 408's outputs...but I use a lot of different overdrive pedals.
    Last edited by Tosca; 05-04-2014 at 07:24 AM.
    “It's easier to fool people than to convince them that they have been fooled.”
    ― Mark Twain

  9. #9
    I was severely impressed Herr Squid's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tosca View Post
    Bigger bridge 408 is "fatter" more wide frequency response which I think balances better with the Korina/Maple. Tele bridge SC sounds are probably not enhanced by this modification. I really like the Tele neck HB and neck HB/bridge SC combo sounds, this setup excels at those. I'm more of a "fat strat" than "Tele twang" type of guy. Had no problem with the 408's outputs...but I use a lot of different overdrive pedals.
    Interesting.. Thanks for posting that! I really like the extra bite of the narrow bridge 408 on my new PG. It seems to work really well with the wood combination on that particular model. Maybe it's still the honeymoon phase, but I'm really liking PRS' newfangled proprietary pickups. Your BM mod is a stroke of genius.

  10. #10
    Happy Egads's Avatar
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    That's awesome! I, too, have been jonesing for justmund's mod and/or a BM. Why not do both! Too cool. Congrats on tweaking an awesome guitar to make it fit you even better.

  11. #11
    Tosca, that's really cool!
    I saw ten thousand talkers whose tongues were all broken...

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    A♥ hoards guitars ♥A rugerpc's Avatar
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    I've been wondering what a fat 408 would sound like in the neck position of a 22 fretter...
    Thbbbt...
    Gork what your need to gork.
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  13. #13
    Senior Member Tosca's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rugerpc View Post
    I've been wondering what a fat 408 would sound like in the neck position of a 22 fretter...
    Thank God I didn't think of that....PTC would have had to re-route all three pickup cavities for me (instead of just two).
    “It's easier to fool people than to convince them that they have been fooled.”
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  14. #14
    Plank Spanker justmund's Avatar
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    Hey Tosca, what switch did you end up with, 3-way or 5-way

  15. #15
    Senior Member Tosca's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by justmund View Post
    Hey Tosca, what switch did you end up with, 3-way or 5-way
    5 way with add bridge on tone pot P/P.
    “It's easier to fool people than to convince them that they have been fooled.”
    ― Mark Twain

  16. #16
    Plank Spanker justmund's Avatar
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    Nice, 26 different tones then!

  17. #17
    Senior Member jfb's Avatar
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    Nicely done!
    Plank Owner

  18. #18
    Senior Member ViperDoc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rugerpc View Post
    I've been wondering what a fat 408 would sound like in the neck position of a 22 fretter...
    The fatter, mo betta!!! DO IT!!!
    PS #4616 * PS #5129 * 2014 P24 Artist Trem * 2012 Tremonti * SE Santana * SE Soapbar II
    Tyler Studio HD Elite * EBMM JP12 * Mesa Boogie Mark V * Mesa Boogie Mark 25 * Fishman Loudbox
    ​Ab Obice Saevior… Stronger When Opposed

  19. #19
    Senior Member ViperDoc's Avatar
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    No one need steal the Brent monster's thunder--that guitar is awesome. But who of any of you would do a Fatboy Mason with rugerpc's idea? Fat 408 Neck, Narrow 408 middle, Fat 408 Bridge?????? That might be woody!!! WOW.
    PS #4616 * PS #5129 * 2014 P24 Artist Trem * 2012 Tremonti * SE Santana * SE Soapbar II
    Tyler Studio HD Elite * EBMM JP12 * Mesa Boogie Mark V * Mesa Boogie Mark 25 * Fishman Loudbox
    ​Ab Obice Saevior… Stronger When Opposed

  20. #20
    Plank Spanker justmund's Avatar
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