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Thread: Illuminators VS Crunchlab/Liquifire

  1. #1

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    Illuminators VS Crunchlab/Liquifire

    Hey everyone, I recently got a Majesty 7 and I feel it sounds very different to my JPXI-6 which has the Liquifire/Crunchlab pickups. The JPXI sounds more direct and alive while the Majesty sounds darker but clearer. Also the JPXI sounds louder.

    I don't know if this is due to the 7 string making it darker and bassier or if the pickups were completely redesigned. I know that maybe I can dial my amp to sound like the JPXI (almost) but I really don't want to mess my settings for every guitar that I play.

    I also have a JP6 with Liquifire/Crunchlab and there are differences but not as evident like the Majesty.
    2014 - Music Man Majesty 7 Polar Noir
    2012 - Music Man JPXI-6 Onyx
    2011 - Music Man JP6 Mystic Dream


    Additional Equipment
    Mesa/Boogie Mark V, Road King 2x12 & Cab Clone
    TC Electronic Dreamscape / Flashback / Polytune
    Dunlop Crybaby 535Q
    Apogee One
    Logic Pro 9

  2. #2

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    For what it's worth, my JP13 and my Maj sound pretty different even though they have the same pups: GameChanger Demo - YouTube

    There were absolutely NO changes in the signal/effects chain. I literally just plugged one guitar in after the other.

    Not sure why this is, exactly, but it is what it is

  3. #3

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    FYI I think my JP13 7 has the newest strings, so that may be the difference we hear, but maybe not...

    I think the general consensus is as you stated: Illuminators darker but clearer. CL/LF are tighter and more alive but lack that clarity.

    Personally, the Illuminators were the first ones I ever played on so the CL/LF seemed almost too "in your face" at first - but now I love my JPXI for it's immediacy.

    Honestly, I almost never touch my amp's controls now that I've got things dialed in for my Majesty. I vote you dial it in to whichever guitar you use most and accept the nuances of the other guitars. I play all my guitars (an active 8-string, several passive 7-strings, and a six) all through the same settings. I suppose if I was recording, things might be different, but I feel you - you can't tweak every time you plug in a different guitar. Good luck, man!

  4. #4

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    I think a lot of the difference is from the fact that you have two very different guitars (and the pickups too, of course)

  5. #5

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    When I had both the Maj. and the 13 I noticed the 13 was brighter and had more attack and tight pick tracking

    The Majesty was darker but also a bit more open sounding and had more sustain.

    The XII I currently have sounds a lot more alive and out in front than either one.
    In the name of Myung, Rudess, Mangini and the Holy Petrucci, grant us the power to melt face and blow minds.

    Amen

  6. #6

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    I don't have a JP13 or a majesty but I thought the Illuminators were supposed to sound brighter than the CL/LF pickups.
    EBMM Luke III Olive Gold HSS rosewood neck
    EBMM JPXI - 8/21/13 (sold)
    Ibanez RG920qm premium
    Mesa Lonestar
    Peavey 6505+

  7. #7

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    The Illuminators sound a little rounder and not as sizzling. However, the side-by-side comparisons I have heard don't sound like anything that can't be adjusted for in EQ.
    BFR JPXI 6-string SLEDGE
    BFR JP12 7-string
    Luke III HSS (Black)
    StingRay 5 HH (Pace Car Blue)

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by Greg Suarez View Post
    The Illuminators sound a little rounder and not as sizzling. However, the side-by-side comparisons I have heard don't sound like anything that can't be adjusted for in EQ.
    That's a pretty perfect description.

  9. #9

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    Also, I've noticed that the illuminators have less output especially evident when playing clean. Have you noticed??
    2014 - Music Man Majesty 7 Polar Noir
    2012 - Music Man JPXI-6 Onyx
    2011 - Music Man JP6 Mystic Dream


    Additional Equipment
    Mesa/Boogie Mark V, Road King 2x12 & Cab Clone
    TC Electronic Dreamscape / Flashback / Polytune
    Dunlop Crybaby 535Q
    Apogee One
    Logic Pro 9

  10. #10

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    I am going to swap out the crunch lab in my JP12 7. I have never gotten along with the crunch lab in an of the guitars I have used them on in the past.
    Luke III BFR Tume
    Luke III BFR Hazel burst quilt

  11. #11

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    I used to like it back when it first came out, but now im such a BKP fanboy I cant stand it. IM pulling my CL out and sticking in a Nailbomb. I love the LF though.



    Quote Originally Posted by PBGas View Post
    I am going to swap out the crunch lab in my JP12 7. I have never gotten along with the crunch lab in an of the guitars I have used them on in the past.

  12. #12

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    I dig the crunchlab. It cleans up fairly well, and is nice clean and cranked. It has bite without being shrill.

  13. #13

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    After several days of comparing the pickups I gotta say that the Illuminators are much better. They have a clearer low-end, a nice mids balance and the treble not as "sappy". Both are awesome but the Majesty just sounds that much better.
    2014 - Music Man Majesty 7 Polar Noir
    2012 - Music Man JPXI-6 Onyx
    2011 - Music Man JP6 Mystic Dream


    Additional Equipment
    Mesa/Boogie Mark V, Road King 2x12 & Cab Clone
    TC Electronic Dreamscape / Flashback / Polytune
    Dunlop Crybaby 535Q
    Apogee One
    Logic Pro 9

  14. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by vicsnake View Post
    After several days of comparing the pickups I gotta say that the Illuminators are much better. They have a clearer low-end, a nice mids balance and the treble not as "sappy". Both are awesome but the Majesty just sounds that much better.
    I have the same impression.

    I recently upgraded the D-Sonic in my '07 JP6 to an Illuminator and it's a huge difference. I had tried the Crunchlab before and was not very impressed, it sounded a lot like the D-Sonic but more "over-the-top" (in a negative way).

    The Illuminator I think is very balanced, as well as it makes the guitar sound bolder and somehow more "fat". The low-end is the tightest I have heard from any high-output pickup and it has a lot of presence but it never gets shrill or too spikey (like the D-Sonic). It is also much more dynamic and expressive. Before I used to end up playing mostly the neck pickup because I felt i was more dynamic than the bridge. Now I play the bridge more and find it more dynamic...

    It's like going from SD to HD, in my ears...

  15. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sigvard90 View Post
    I have the same impression.

    I recently upgraded the D-Sonic in my '07 JP6 to an Illuminator and it's a huge difference. I had tried the Crunchlab before and was not very impressed, it sounded a lot like the D-Sonic but more "over-the-top" (in a negative way).

    The Illuminator I think is very balanced, as well as it makes the guitar sound bolder and somehow more "fat". The low-end is the tightest I have heard from any high-output pickup and it has a lot of presence but it never gets shrill or too spikey (like the D-Sonic). It is also much more dynamic and expressive. Before I used to end up playing mostly the neck pickup because I felt i was more dynamic than the bridge. Now I play the bridge more and find it more dynamic...

    It's like going from SD to HD, in my ears...
    Have you tried playing the LF/CL and the Illuminators next to each other??? I find my ears very sensible to the change. I mean, I always end up liking better the one that I played first but overall I know that the Illuminators are better.
    2014 - Music Man Majesty 7 Polar Noir
    2012 - Music Man JPXI-6 Onyx
    2011 - Music Man JP6 Mystic Dream


    Additional Equipment
    Mesa/Boogie Mark V, Road King 2x12 & Cab Clone
    TC Electronic Dreamscape / Flashback / Polytune
    Dunlop Crybaby 535Q
    Apogee One
    Logic Pro 9

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