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Reviews of Noiseless Duncan Single Coil Pickups

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  • Reviews of Noiseless Duncan Single Coil Pickups

    For Vault Purposes, please post your impressions, including what guitars, amps, and artist/styles work best with this pup. Thanks.

    This would include all Rails pups and all humbuckers in a Single coil size.

    "You can't save everybody, everybody don't wanna be saved."

  • #2
    Re: Reviews of Noiseless Duncan Single Coil Pickups

    STK-T3b - This is the bridge position pickup that's basically a "stacked" humbucker for Telecaster bridge. Though I have read several reviews that tout this pickups as being not quite tonally singe coil, my experience has been that it retains the single coil tone very nicely. Other reviewers also tout it as being really lower output. Well, remember, it's a "vintage-style" pickup. To some degree, it's going to be lower output. But in my experience with it, I really couldn't see a drop in output when compared to any other vintage-type Tele bridge pickup. The tone is very sweet and musical. It does have a nice topend sparkle to it that works well in any musical situation. The hum-cancelling is very nice as well. The noise reduction I heard was similar to that of a side-by-side humbucker. I used this pickup in an alder-bodied Tele with a rosewood fretboard. Musically, I used it for Jazz, Blues, and Country. I played through a Fender Deluxe Reverb and a Blues Jr. It was very sensitive to what amp you used. I used light effects including compression, chorus and delay. It took to the effects nicely. The only drawback to it was it's depth. It was a little difficult to mount. I like my Tele pickups a bit lower than most I guess. This pickup, due to its depth, cannot be lowered too much unless you get some longer screws.

    STK-T1n - The neck version of the Vintage Stack set. This pickup shares pretty much all the same characteristics of its mate; the STK-T3b. Of course, it'll sound different. It's a neck pickup. It gives the classic Tele neck pickup tone but without the noise. It's also a bit creamier-sounding with a hint of Strat hollowness. Don't ask me why. I don't know. I just know that it's a bit more hollw that a standard Tele neck pickup. This one was also difficult to mount for the same reasons as the bridge model. But that didn't stop me. I mounted them and was very happy with the set.
    -Butch Snyder

    Never cut your nose off to spite your face. It never grows back...


    • #3
      Re: Reviews of Noiseless Duncan Single Coil Pickups

      Stat Hot Stack - Neck
      This pickup is very glassy and articulate. It is sensetive to pick attack. It has the sweetness of a single coil tone, but gives more of a midrange edge, which makes it easier to push out the notes in the mix. The low end is very tight but not very bassy for a neck pickup. I've noticed that the low end gets pretty flabby when using cheap distortion methods.
      I highly recommend this pickup for strat necks and tele neck positions too.


      • #4
        Re: Reviews of Noiseless Duncan Single Coil Pickups

        ClassicStack - STK-S1n, i use mine in the middle position of a H-S-H all maple guitar. i prefer this pickup for its stratish tones, but without the hum (and my entire guitar is "hum-cancel"). very close to a strat pickup (sayt ssl-1) but deffintaly different, in a good way. my guitar sounds strat-enough to play jimi, clapton, or SRV tones, yet it lets a bit of my own unique tone come through. as always, a good tube amp allows the pickup to really show its stuff
        Godin SDXT - 59-ClassicStack-JB
        Martin D-15 - Fishman Neo-D
        Boss BD-2 - MXR dynacomp - Dunlop Crybaby GCB-95 - Morley A/B/Y
        Crate VC-3112
        Brownsville NY J-Bass Copy
        Fender Bassman 60


        • #5
          Re: Reviews of Noiseless Duncan Single Coil Pickups

          I very much like my hotrail in the bridge of my MIM strat(2000, poplar body) .I find though it does tend to distort very easily even with cleans if hit hard enough will distort a bit. Over all, for playing music with heavy distortion such as metal or punk it does a very good job. For more traditional vintage type sounds it comes up a little short. I have yet to try any pick ups with the hotrails, but i'd imagine a cool rail or vintage rail would go well with the hotrails in the bridge. The hotrails gives a very good thick sound great for palm muting as well. Overall this pick up made world of difference in my strat when it was stock.

          For artists i'd say it can do most metal bands and can do pop punk such as blink 182 very well. Essentially i wuld say this pick up is the JB jr. is to the Jb ot the lil 59 is to the 59 model, so the hotrial would be similiar to that of the invader humbucker.
          Last edited by strat_master; 05-11-2004, 03:09 PM.
          Proud Master of Strats.....


          • #6
            Re: Reviews of Noiseless Duncan Single Coil Pickups

            Seymour Duncan Duckbucker
            .... full of balanced Quack tone, very low output, noise cancelling, adjustable poles, affordable.

            I love the Duckbucker but as a NECK PU only!

            Cool Stack for Middle position - Some Quack and some power.
            Fat Strat into a Soldano, always.


            • #7
              Re: Reviews of Noiseless Duncan Single Coil Pickups

              Hot rails - Squire strat, bridge position.

              I've used this guitar variously through 20W Orange and Marshall practice amps, some sort of 100W Marshall combo, and a Hughes and Kettner Warp 7 half stack.

              Great improvement over the stock single coil, good for very distorted sounds without getting muddy (or so I've found).

              A bit too trebly sometimes, particularly noticable through the clean channel (I have to switch to a different pickup for cleans), particularly if you try to use a crybaby at the same time. Would benefit from having it's own tone pot to roll off the highs a little. I think there is a mod you can do, where you wire a 0.0047 capacitor between the 'capacitor lugs' for the middle and bridge pickups on the switch, allowing the tone pot for the middle pickup to act on the bridge pickup. Haven't tried this yet, but it's on my 'to do' list.

              The other pickups in the guitar are stock. The hotrails exposes how crap the stock pickups are, particularly if I switch to either the neck or middle pickup alone from the hotrails without changing the gain level. IMO, the other pickups need to be changed out for something noiseless, since I typically use a lot of gain.

              A very good pickup, well worth the money (I actually picked it up second hand).


              • #8
                Re: Reviews of Noiseless Duncan Single Coil Pickups

                Tele Hot Stack neck - Great pickup for a Tele if you want a bit more output and warmth from the tele bridge slot while still retaining that characteristic Tele twang. It's an exceptional pickup for rock, blues or counrty where you want Tele tone plus an added bit of attitude.

                Tele Vintage Stack bridge - Great vintage Tele tone without the hum.

                Tele Vintage Stack neck - Excellent Tele neck tone without the hum. Excellent choice paired with both the Hot and Vintage Tele bridge stack.

                Strat Classic Stack bridge - Just a touch more mids than a typical Strat single coil pickup but still very glassy and Strat-like in tone. Output is simular to vintage single coil Strat pickups.

                Hot Stack Strat bridge/neck - More output and warmth than the Classic Stack but still retains the typical Strat sound. Great for lead work, hot blues and rock but cleans up nicely for almost all styles. I am particularily fond of the Hot Stack used in between the lil and Jr style single coil sized HBs in a Strat to keep more of the traditional Strat tones in the notched positions. Next to a full sized HB the Hot Stack can get a little overpowered but the addition of a series/parallel switch allows for more glassiness in the #4 position.

                lil59 - Excellent P.A.F. type tone from a single coil sized HB. Great choice for a Strat neck slot where more girth is needed for soloing.

                JB jr - JB tone from a single coil sized pickup with the mid presence that has made the JB a favorite for decades. I like the JB jr in the mid slot between full sized HBs to get the notched position tones but with more girth and presence. It's a hard pickup to beat between a JB and a 59n in an h/s/h guitar.

                Hot Rails - huge HB tone and output from a single coil sived pickup. If you want a hard rock Strat and a somewhat stock appearance (s/s/s).

                Vintage Rail/Duckbucker - They may be somewhat funny looking but they have the some of truest single coil tone of any hum cancelling pickup I have ever heard. They were (not sure currently) even available in the PRS Swamp Ash Specials so Paul tends to agree. Killer sounding pickups if you are into Strat tones but don't dig the noise.

                Cool Rails - Perhaps just a little warmer than the lil59 but somewhat simular. Killer P.A.F. type tone from a single coil sized pickup with more output when compared to vintage Strat singles.

                Lil Screamin Demon - hotter and a touch warmer than the lil59.

                Live wires Hot Strat - Massive output and warmth while still retaining a very believable Strat tone. These pickups drive an amp almost as hard as the Duncan Distortion and allow for massive hard rock and metal tones. Very nice and warm clean tones as well. They are hard to beat if you are looking to turn a Strat into hard rock beast with massive attack and sustain.

                T4D got a new gig!

                (Please send sig worthy material!)


                • #9
                  Re: Reviews of Noiseless Duncan Single Coil Pickups

                  I tried the Duckbuckers in one of my strats a while back. I think they do a great job of that classic strat tone without the hum. Pretty much 'nuff said. They also are the same inside guts as the Vintage Rails, so if ou don't like the look of either, you can try the other with the same tone. Excellent toy.


                  "You can't save everybody, everybody don't wanna be saved."


                  • #10
                    Re: Reviews of Noiseless Duncan Single Coil Pickups

                    My only Duncan at this point is a lil59. I put it in the bridge of my strat to cover a musical gig(Hedwig and the Angry Inch) that I'm doing in Hollywood. I needed a big, fat, noisefree bridge sound for the all the heavy stuff in the show. This pickup totally fit the bill. I'm getting a GREAT rock tone with this pup and I still have the glassy notch position in the neck for the ballads. No EQ required, though I bummed my mids a tad to cut through the keyboard player(um, his sound anyway).