New TH30: Seeking Pickup and Tube Recommendations

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Andy_Ess
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New TH30: Seeking Pickup and Tube Recommendations

Post by Andy_Ess » Thu Dec 21, 2017 2:58 pm

Hello,
I have a 6 string ibanez with 81/85 comb that generally sounds great through the TH30 going into the ppc212. But I have noticed that these hot active pickups get muddy after maybe 60% volume out of the guitar.

I also have a washburn 7 string with the original K10 pickups in it and it comes back through the TH30 very dark and muddy unless I turn the volume on the guitar down and crank up the amp.

I am fine with the Ibanez how it is now and I want to upgrade the pickups in my washburn.

Based on my reading I think I want a pair of pickups that would be considered medium output but Im not sure what gets me there. Most pickups I see seem to be marketed to a tight modern metal style. I am more interested in getting a warm distorted sustain that still allows note definition.

Also I am new to tube amps. Will switching to a tube that does not drive as much gain give me more room to use hotter pickups?

Thank you in advance for sharing your experience and expertise.

-D

mici88
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Re: New TH30: Seeking Pickup and Tube Recommendations

Post by mici88 » Thu Dec 21, 2017 9:50 pm

TH30 owner here. I'm selling it tommorow, probably because of muddiness you've mentioned.

Long story short. And I'm reffering to dirty channel only; clean channel is brilliant.

I got it a year ago or so (preamp tubes were already changed by previous owner for some good JJs) with PPC112, and after honeymoon, when the emotions cooled down I've started to notice that there is a very, very thin line between *oh-yea-now-we're-talking-but-I-want-more-gain* and fizz+mud. I thought that it might be pickups fault - I was playing a Epiphone with stock pups back then. So, I bought a new guitar - japanese Jackson Kelly KE3 with EMG 81/85. All I got was just more output, more gain but tone was not better in terms of clarity and dynamics - still fizz. Next step: bigger cabinet - PPC212 with V30s. I spent whole night to figure out my tone and finally I did it:

15w mode
volume 2:00
shape 11:00
gain 12:00
TS-808 in front (level max, tone at 10:00, drive dimmed)
guitar volume knob somehwhere in the middle.

I was pretty happy with that settings - it got me a really heavy, saturated and full tone. Few months later I got another Jackson with Seymour Duncan SH13 and it also did good.

I believe that problem with TH30 is that its dirty channel is quite limiting without full EQ section and too much gain in general - I, and lots of folks I know - have only one setting that works on TH30 and that makes this amp a kind of one-trick pony. Of course you can experiment with:
-pedals (Tubescreamer in front, EQ in the loop or any other tone-chaning device)
-tubes (some with less output on the preamp)
-pickups

but all in all TH30 might not be for you - and that is why I'm selling my tommorow.

cddsix
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Re: New TH30: Seeking Pickup and Tube Recommendations

Post by cddsix » Fri Dec 22, 2017 12:15 am

Wow muddy/fuzz have not been my experience at all with my TH30 head, JJ tubes. It seems a little more 'tight and defined' than any other Orange I have and have owned, rockerverbs, OR15s etc.

The best results I have had for articulation and clarity are the DImarzio 36th anniversary, almost a single coil like punch and clarity with the thickness of a hum bucket, I think those would work fabulous for you through a TH30.

Sootio
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Re: New TH30: Seeking Pickup and Tube Recommendations

Post by Sootio » Fri Dec 22, 2017 10:47 am

cddsix wrote:
Fri Dec 22, 2017 12:15 am
Wow muddy/fuzz have not been my experience at all with my TH30 head, JJ tubes. It seems a little more 'tight and defined' than any other Orange I have and have owned, rockerverbs, OR15s etc.

The best results I have had for articulation and clarity are the DImarzio 36th anniversary, almost a single coil like punch and clarity with the thickness of a hum bucket, I think those would work fabulous for you through a TH30.
That's not been my experience either. You don't need high powered pickups with that amp.

Andy_Ess
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Re: New TH30: Seeking Pickup and Tube Recommendations

Post by Andy_Ess » Fri Dec 22, 2017 10:12 pm

Sootio wrote:
Fri Dec 22, 2017 10:47 am
cddsix wrote:
Fri Dec 22, 2017 12:15 am
Wow muddy/fuzz have not been my experience at all with my TH30 head, JJ tubes. It seems a little more 'tight and defined' than any other Orange I have and have owned, rockerverbs, OR15s etc.

The best results I have had for articulation and clarity are the DImarzio 36th anniversary, almost a single coil like punch and clarity with the thickness of a hum bucket, I think those would work fabulous for you through a TH30.
That's not been my experience either. You don't need high powered pickups with that amp.
Thank you, both. I agree that smashing the preamp on the TH30 with a really hot signal is just going to oversaturate it and make it fizz. the 36th Anniversary Pickups are PAF for 6 strings. A little sniffing around on their website leads me to the PAF7 and just my luck there's a guitar shop on Reverb selling them two for $90 clipped out of a new off the shelf Ibanez Prestige.

Sootio
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Re: New TH30: Seeking Pickup and Tube Recommendations

Post by Sootio » Fri Dec 22, 2017 11:05 pm

Andy_Ess wrote:
Fri Dec 22, 2017 10:12 pm
Sootio wrote:
Fri Dec 22, 2017 10:47 am
cddsix wrote:
Fri Dec 22, 2017 12:15 am
Wow muddy/fuzz have not been my experience at all with my TH30 head, JJ tubes. It seems a little more 'tight and defined' than any other Orange I have and have owned, rockerverbs, OR15s etc.

The best results I have had for articulation and clarity are the DImarzio 36th anniversary, almost a single coil like punch and clarity with the thickness of a hum bucket, I think those would work fabulous for you through a TH30.
That's not been my experience either. You don't need high powered pickups with that amp.
Thank you, both. I agree that smashing the preamp on the TH30 with a really hot signal is just going to oversaturate it and make it fizz. the 36th Anniversary Pickups are PAF for 6 strings. A little sniffing around on their website leads me to the PAF7 and just my luck there's a guitar shop on Reverb selling them two for $90 clipped out of a new off the shelf Ibanez Prestige.
I think you're on the right track.

cddsix
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Re: New TH30: Seeking Pickup and Tube Recommendations

Post by cddsix » Sat Dec 23, 2017 2:46 pm

I have been playing my other guitars through the TH30 more lately and definitely see what you mean about the fuzz with most pickups. When I use Dimarzio tone zone or Norton or PAF Pro through the TH30 it is pretty dang fuzzy.
The 36th anniversary are a completely different story though...I'm sure Seymour Duncan has a PAF that would sound great through TH30 also but I don't use them enough to know which that would be.

I noticed you were looking a 7 string pickup, I have a Dimarzio Ionizer, Toby Abassin (spelling?) sig pickup in my 8 string guitar. I got it because it has a lot of PAF clarity and character. Might be worth a look. I think the PAF7 you are looking at would be awesome also.

cddsix
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Re: New TH30: Seeking Pickup and Tube Recommendations

Post by cddsix » Sat Dec 23, 2017 5:58 pm

I am curious what you are using for OD or EQ pedal. I have found that my Orange amps, more so than with other amps, I need a clean boost up front and an EQ in the loop to brighten and tighten the sound. I honestly don't think I would be able to use Orange amps at all without this certain combination of boost and EQ, the amps are a bit dark and fuzzy when going straight in. I have been through a slew of OD pedals, have settled on an EH Soul food boost up front and an Orange two stroke EQ in the loop, this combination can get the sound tight and articulate no matter what guitar/pickup I'm using

Les Paul Lover
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Re: New TH30: Seeking Pickup and Tube Recommendations

Post by Les Paul Lover » Mon Dec 25, 2017 10:34 pm

cddsix wrote:
Sat Dec 23, 2017 5:58 pm
I am curious what you are using for OD or EQ pedal. I have found that my Orange amps, more so than with other amps, I need a clean boost up front and an EQ in the loop to brighten and tighten the sound. I honestly don't think I would be able to use Orange amps at all without this certain combination of boost and EQ, the amps are a bit dark and fuzzy when going straight in. I have been through a slew of OD pedals, have settled on an EH Soul food boost up front and an Orange two stroke EQ in the loop, this combination can get the sound tight and articulate no matter what guitar/pickup I'm using
Isn't Dark and fuzzy the reason why we choose Orange amps?

I love that darkness - it's not overbearing, and can be made to simply sound really fat for classic rock... but if you want, you can really accentuate that darkness and make it part of the music you play.

Love it!!!
Ant

Orange Gear: RV50 MKI, R30, AD15, PPC212
Past Orange: Orange AD30TC Combo, AD15, Tiny Terror, AD5

Guitars: Gibson Les Paul Standard Faded, Vigier Expert Retro 54, Gibson SG 70s Tribute, Aria Pro II RS X80, G&L ASAT Special Tribute

Andy_Ess
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Re: New TH30: Seeking Pickup and Tube Recommendations

Post by Andy_Ess » Sun Dec 31, 2017 3:24 pm

I got the PAF7s in a few days ago.

It took me a day of knob twiddling to get a feel for the difference.

First observation: I get useable tone from the amp all the way up to max gain and the amp needs a good 1/4 twist more when I swap from the 6 String EMGs to the 7 string PAF.

The PAFs have a warmer sound and better note articulation as expected but the overall tone is still dark and deep like Moria.

With the shape knob all the way up and a little glaze of reverb to open the tone up I'm getting this warm growl with a knife edge that I'm really enjoying and is not like anything I've heard before.

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