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Replacement p90's

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  • Replacement p90's

    I've been eyeing an Ibanez SHB (Artcore of some variety) down at the local mom and pop.  It's down to $300 and plays absolutely beautifully.

    Of course, the p90's in it are horrible, and I'm wondering about others' thoughts on replacing p90's.

    I could put in HB's (same store has Burstbuckers on sale for 75/apiece), or another set ... I once replaced pups in a semi hollow and just snipped the leads and did a "poor man's patch."  It worked great.

    Alternatively, there is a Gretsch 5422 there I love, but they are asking $675, and ... meh.  That's not the price point I want to pay.



  • #2

    I had an Artcore very similar to that (in dark teal bubinga) and replaced the "meh" standard pickups in it with Irongear Alchemist 90 HB-sized P90s, and it just came alive.  After a bit of height adjustment, they sounded super badass in the Ibanez.  

    A friend bought it from me as a gift for his son, who had just become interested in semi-hollows. Maybe I'll buy it back from him if his kid loses interest.

    I haven't used them personally, but I've heard nothing but unqualified praise about Brian Gunsher's (BG Pickups) Pure 90s and Rose Pickups' Black Velvet.   

    The Black Velvet, by the way, you can order with your choice of magnets: Alnico II, III, IV, V, VIII.  If it were me, I'd go for the AII or AIII for a more vintage sound.

    Vintage Sunburst Epi Dot Dlx: Seth Lover set | Red MIM Strat: Tonerider City Limits set; Deaf Eddie Fat-O-Caster switch | 3TS Classic Vibe 60s Strat: Deaf Eddie Chromacaster switch | Ibanez SZ520QM: Dimarzio Bluesbucker & Air Zone | Fender Sonoran Bucket acoustic-electric | Fender Super Champ XD: Eminence Ragin' Cajun; JJ Tubes | Fender G-Dec III 30: Eminence Ragin' Cajun


    • onelife
      onelife commented
      Editing a comment

      I'd recommend the Kinmans but they are quite expensive - over $300 for the pair so you would be looking at the same total price as the Gretsch.

      You would, however, end up with an outstanding guitar for much less than a grand.


  • #3
    I'd also consider the Kinmans.

    I'm lousy at soldering, so when I got them for my Strat I bought the wiring harness, so it's a complete set and I didn't have to disassemble the original. If I sell the guitar I just have to swap the old pickguard back in.


    • #4

      Lollar P90s are worth every penny. i replaced the stock P90s in my PRS SE Singlecut with Lollars. BIG improvement.


      • #5
        I love p90s. Any effort to make them work is good effort.


        • tlbonehead
          tlbonehead commented
          Editing a comment

          Hard to beat Bryan's P90 stuff. I'm also a fan of Gibson's P94s. Also Lindy Fralins and Vintage Vibes are really good.