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Albaez

Swapping Schaller pickups to Seth Lover

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Posted (edited)

Hi, everyone, I'm new in this Forum. I have a Heritage H535 and H550 with Schaller pickups but I'm tempted to change the pickups to Seth Lover like the new ones. I play mostly jazz, blues and fusion with light overdrive. I want to know if anyone made this change and liked the sound better. I saw a video of Rich Severson comparing both pickups and liked the Schallers over the Seth Lover in a H575. Someone commented that he installed Seth Lover and changed back to Schallers for retaining the sound of the wood better. Someone that had the same experience? Thanks.

Edited by Albaez

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Posted (edited)

Welcome to the forum.

It's really hard to beat the Seth Lover pickups. If you want the sound of original PAF pickups, they're where it's at. They go very well with styles of music you've described. I've never really cared for the Schaller pickups myself. Over the years I've had quite a few different Heritage guitars, and I always wound up swapping pickups. To me, at best the Schallers are just okay.

Edited by davesultra

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Been playing for fifty years, plus or minus.  Have owned a pile of guitars dating from '52 on....  Gigged my 535 a lot.  I haven't swapped out the p'ups in it.  Mine came with Lovers.  I couldn't imagine a better pickup in that guitar.  Could. Not.  

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I had Seths in an LP for quite a few years and found them to be an extremely balanced pickup, the only reason I swapped them out was because I wanted to try a Pure Handwound (wound by hand, not guided on a machine by hand) custom humbucker made by David Plummer of Zhangbucker. The newer humbuckers were marginally better than the Seths. As for Schallers, I've never heard a set that did it for me. But with pickups, like anything else, they need to line up with the guitar that they are in! 

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Thanks to everyone, I will try the Seth Lovers. I know how to change pickups by myself, If I don't like the sound I'll sell it and put back the Schallers.

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I really like the Seth Lovers. Great pickups.

  • Upvote 1

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For dark smokey jazz... Schallers are darker and often loved by jazzers.  Seths are great PAFs, but being underwound they may be too bright for traditional jazz. 

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On 6/4/2020 at 8:36 PM, yoslate said:

Been playing for fifty years, plus or minus.  Have owned a pile of guitars dating from '52 on....  Gigged my 535 a lot.  I haven't swapped out the p'ups in it.  Mine came with Lovers.  I couldn't imagine a better pickup in that guitar.  Could. Not.  

The mind is a wonderful thing to waste..... I think I told you at least 3 times that I sold you those Seths because you wanted to put them in your 535.  They came out of my 555 because I thought they were a little too bright.  I replaced them with Throbak PG-102s because they are slightly hotter with more mids.

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UPDATE: I finally replaced the Schaller pickups with Seth Lover in my H-335. I liked the percussive attack of the Seth Lover  and the air that surrounds the notes. In overdrive are more responsive and touch sensitive than Schallers. If I roll the tone knob to the middle I can get a nice jazz sound with great attack. The Schallers are hotter and rounded, are perfect for jazz, but I wanted a more es 335 sound than a jazz sound in that guitar, more like Larry Carlton. I have another guitars for playing jazz. Conclusion: I liked the Seth Lover more, the Schallers are good pickups also but the sound is very compromised, are more for jazz than other styles in my opinion. I Think I'll keep the Schallers in my H-550, I read in another forum that unpotted pickups can cause more feedback in hollowbody guitars. And definitely I'll keep the Seth Lover in the H-335, they make that guitar a monster machine. Thanks everyone for their advises.

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Welcome to the Forum.  I owned a H535 with Schaller pickups and to ears they always sounded too muddy for my taste.  I now own two H-535. Both the guitars have Seth Lover pickups.  I like the sound of the Seth Lovers better than the Schallers.

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Only just saw this thread. I too have discarded the schallers from my H535.Couldn't be happier with my custom wound Brierley B90s.

 

 

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On 6/14/2020 at 7:04 PM, LeBaron said:

Only just saw this thread. I too have discarded the schallers from my H535.Couldn't be happier with my custom wound Brierley B90s.

Dig it!  That is my guitar. 

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Posted (edited)

I have a 2014 H535 with Seths and it sounds and plays superlatively 

Edited by JazzyPete

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Glad you like the Seth's.  I love them too.

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I've got a set of gold Seth Lovers in the basement.   I was going to put them in my 157 a few years ago, but the rout isn't deep enough for the long legs.   I put the Schallers back in and figured at some time I would order a different set of pickups.   

Two years later,  I'm still playing the Schallers.     Some day I'll order a set of gold pickups... I swear I will.

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Posted (edited)

I made the routing by myself, I bought a wireless router in Wal-Mart ($25) and practiced in a separate wood until I was confident. That area is not visible, so any mistake can be covered. I painted the routing with a red sharpie, looks that was made in the factory. You'll be no regret to make the pickup swap.

Edited by Albaez

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6 hours ago, TalismanRich said:

I've got a set of gold Seth Lovers in the basement.   I was going to put them in my 157 a few years ago, but the rout isn't deep enough for the long legs.   I put the Schallers back in and figured at some time I would order a different set of pickups.   

Two years later,  I'm still playing the Schallers.     Some day I'll order a set of gold pickups... I swear I will.

All you need is a good drill press and a forestner bit.

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29 minutes ago, Steiner said:

All you need is a good drill press and a forestner bit.

+1000, this is a job that should take just a few minutes. Even if you don't own a drill press, I'm sure it would be fairly easy to find someone who does, and would be willing to help on such an easy job, especially if all the strings and hardware were off the guitar, so it would be an in and out thing.

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21 hours ago, Steiner said:

All you need is a good drill press and a forestner bit.

What should I use to fill the hole when I cut just a bit too deep?  

 

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29 minutes ago, TalismanRich said:

What should I use to fill the hole when I cut just a bit too deep? 

JB Weld and/or Bondo.  I can't help you with the press' platen if you go THAT deep!

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3 hours ago, TalismanRich said:

What should I use to fill the hole when I cut just a bit too deep?  

 

C'mon just set the depth on the drill press, let's get those Seths in there:)

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I would have to get a drill press first, and I really don't need one.   I've got other projects that are more pressing (like a new garage door and house painting).   Plus, its not like I can't play a guitar with Seths.   My Mille has Seths, and I put Sheptone Tributes in my 535 and Alnico Pro IIs in my H140.  

I've also looked at some other pickups, but it just isn't a priority.     That's the nice thing about having a bunch of guitars!   Besides,  I don't think the Schallers are bad, but  I've only lived with them for 17 years.     I might feel differently after I play it a bit longer!  :D

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Posted (edited)

UPDATE #2: I can't resisted and bought a set of Seth Lovers for my Heritage H-550 and installed them immediately. I really don't liked the sound, it was a little thin compared to the Schallers, the bass note was clearer but the highs was too much thin. In my H-535 they sounded great but in the H-550 they sounded too bright for my taste. I removed them and traded for a pair of  57 classics to a friend of mine. I installed them and BOOM!! classic Gibby sound immediately. That's the sound I was looking for, very balanced, sweet sounding highs and punchy bass. The middle spike in the 57 complimented well with the guitar. Now I have the sound of a Tal Farlow and ES-350 in one guitar. I also replaced the Schaller roller bridge with a Callaham TOM bridge and the sound improved. Lots of sustain, fatter notes and balanced the sound between high and bass notes, and better intonation. Now I have a killer guitar.

Edited by Albaez

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I love those 57 Classics.  Great pickup.  I have Lollar Imperials in my 550 and it is amazing, but I'm sure the 57 Classics are great too.  Well done.

I've never had a bad experience with Seths, but if you've found the sound, that's awesome.

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