My poor Silvertone has been toothless for a few months. I had a pair of Gibson 60s Tribute Less Paul P-90s in it, but due to some mismatched looking cream covers vs. a lighter cream colored set of Oops! rings I made to cover up my "routing" sloppiness (ST was originally 2 HBs) and 2 other projects which each begged for a good P-90 (luckily one needed a Neck P-90 and the other a Bridge).
Vanity, I know. But it seriously made the thing look like junk. It's way too pretty a guitar to look like that. Also, I bought a new set of covers at one point and they didn't quite match the rings either... I know, I know, make new rings? No way. I BARELY managed to get 2 out of 4 attempts presentable... not doing that again.
So anyway, I had a set of Wilkinson licensed P-90s that I bought on a lark because they were $20.00 for the pair. I figured if nothing else they'd be something to experiment on.
Well, I noticed, while looking through the parts bin that they were the exact same color as my Oops! rings. So I wired em up, got them all installed and restrung the beast.
It looks beautiful now (well, to ME it does!)... but it seriously sounds like a pair of P-90s with their balls chopped off. Neuter-90s. I tried raising, lowering, adjusting the pole-pieces, etc. *sigh*
I dunno.. maybe I messed my hearing up today working on a Strat with active pickups that were loud as hell... maybe these are "vintagey" sounding and I'm just not cool enough to hear it.
I'm a little bummed by this. I've had what seems to be extraordinary luck with less expensive pickups. I've got a $12 neck pickup (Dragonfire Texas Blues) in my Tele (first guitar I built) and it's FANtastic. I'd dare anyone to knock it after hearing it. Same with GFS. I bought some Mean 90s and they blew my shorts off. I ended up buying a lot more stuff from both of them and have been very happy with them.
These Wilkinson P-90s, though... underwhelming at best. It's not a "bad" sound, just very "meh..."
I'm going to give the ears a rest, maybe play with the tone setup, and give it another go tomorrow and see if it hits me any differently.
Tone-skin... the ONLY way to to really NAIL that sound.
Hmm, I put probably the same $20 set of P-90's into my LP clone and I'll put them up against Gibsons, at least the ones I've heard on Youtube. A bit noisy with distortion, but less hot than the stock pups and ring like a bell. Just like a HB-sized SC should sound, and can handle vintage warm tones. I'll see if I can't dig up the exact model #, but the resistance of each is posted in my Wilkinson thread. Maybe a bad batch?
I like my Dragonforce Texas Blues SC's too! I put the Neck and Mid into my MIM strat and the bridge back in the box. I have the neck on a blender put and it sounds great with a Hotrail in the bridge, and with all 3 pickups.