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Thread: Steve Morse pickup change

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2018
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    Steve Morse pickup change

    I have recently picked up a Y2D and while the playability is great I can't get it to sound right. The bridge pickup sounds especially harsh, cold and hard edged. I'm thinking about changing the bridge pickup to something like a Duncan Custom Custom. Or does anybody have any recommendations? It all sucks a bit because the pickups are colour matched.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
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    Toronto, Canada
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    10,251
    So much is down to personal preference (I love those pickups), what amp you're playing, etc.

    But they're easy to change, and you can always get stickers/decals for the top of the pickups so they all match. I just searched for "colored stickers for pickups" and got some solid hits.

  3. #3
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    Jan 2018
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    I had the same problem with my Y2D. I ended up with (believe it or not) Duncan Screamin Demon. It's kind of a misnomer. It's not a screechy high output like the name tends to imply. It really balanced it out for my setup. It actually sounds pretty damn good when split also. A lot of the Duncans don't. It's a clear and open sounding pickup that I think takes some of the harshness away. Let us know what you try and like or don't like.

    PS I didn't care for the JB or the Custom in mine.
    Just because you're paranoid doesn't mean they're not after you.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by vuduhwy View Post
    I had the same problem with my Y2D. I ended up with (believe it or not) Duncan Screamin Demon. It's kind of a misnomer. It's not a screechy high output like the name tends to imply. It really balanced it out for my setup. It actually sounds pretty damn good when split also. A lot of the Duncans don't. It's a clear and open sounding pickup that I think takes some of the harshness away. Let us know what you try and like or don't like.

    PS I didn't care for the JB or the Custom in mine.
    Ok, thanks for the tip, very useful info. I have the fixed bridge version, how about you? Screamin Demon sounds like an interesting and a bit unexpected choice. I feel I need something "sweet" and smooth in this guitar for the bridge position, hence the idea of using a Custom Custom, I've had great success with that pickup in the bridge before. As it is now legato sounds half-ok but the picked attack is just plain nasty at times, and very "unforgiving" if that makes sense.

  5. #5
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    Jan 2007
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    Welcome Vegaman,

    I "just" own a Standard Morse, not a Y2D. Don´t find the Pickups harsh, cold and hard edged. Did you play with the pickup height? The Humbuckers, especially the Bridge, have a lot of power and are designed for Steve Morses preference of having all of his pickups VERY low. I have seen his guitars in person. The neck HB was at the height of the lower edge of the rosewood fretboard, the Bridge HB a bit higher. So I can imagine, they sound uncommon when setup higher.

    Steve´s tech Tommy, here onboard, posted this one:
    Steve Morse EBMM correct pick up height-1sideshotpickups-jpg

    You may want to take a look at this thread: Steve Morse EBMM correct pick up height

    Hope it helps!
    Last edited by banjoplayer; 06-08-2018 at 04:29 PM.
    blueburst Steve Morse Standard, Jan 03, 2005 pix
    pinkburst Albert Lee, Jul 13, 1994 pix
    cinnamon SUB1, Mar 08, 2004 pix
    vintage gold reflex, June 22, 2011 pix

    My Bands: The BlueScream, Shelter50

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Posts
    925
    Love my morse. I keep it at the factory action. always sounds great.

    I guess the one question I have after reading all that, is whether those numbers are with guitar fretted at the 22nd fret, or with the strings open.
    Last edited by tbonesullivan; 06-09-2018 at 03:25 PM.
    2007 Stingray 5 HS Cherry Burst / Maple fretboard / 3 Band EQ / Ceramic Pickups
    2012 Stingray 5 H Pearl Blue / Rosewood Fretboard/ 3 Band EQ/ AlNiCo Pickup
    2012 Steve Morse Signature Morse Blueburst / Rosewood FB
    2012 Luke III SSH Vintage Sunburst / Rosewood Neck

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2018
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    So I tried lowering the bridge pickup and the tone did get a bit sweeter (as in less harsh) but it also sounds quite thin and "nasal" now instead. So I guess a pickup change is the next step

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