8 November 2013

Viking Pickups: Berserker Bridge & Neck Review

I've been using a set of Berserkers which is part of the Odin series from Viking Pickups for just over a month now and they have made a very welcome addition to my setup amongst the likes of Bulldog, Entwistle & EMG pickups.

They have filled a major gap that I have in my collection with is a serious lack of pickups that use Alnico magnets. To some people this may seem like utter insanity but I have never managed to find any that I liked after flirtations with the Duncan JB & the Bare knuckle Nailbomb. Neither of these suited me at all. They both suffered from a soft flubby low end which just wont cut it for the music that I play.

This is the key point where the Berserkers differ. The low end is very controlled and focused which is a bit of an odd trait for an AV pickup but it's definitely something that I like.

The Sound
These pickups have a fairly high output clocking in at 16.6k on the bridge pickup and 8.6k on the neck so they aren't exactly what you would consider a straight up PAF I'd say more a hotrodded PAF and even that is downplaying the power.

They have a good solid amount of upper mids which is complimented by a healthy amount of highs that doesn't fizz out or go really scratchy. The Low end as i said earlier is very focused and precise. These three points added together make for a nicely balanced tonality across the whole TMB spectrum.

They seem to soak up gain in a very pleasant way without getting ultra saturated so you still hear all of the notes ringing out in the chords yet you can still chug away like James Hetfield on them. Add to this the midrange detail and you have a recipe for disaster!

The bridge provides a present and clear clean sound that some may describe as spiky but to me it is more of an in your face biting clean sound which is what most players look for when looking at bridge pickup clean sounds. The neck pickup is where the soft smoother clean sounds are for those delicate passages.

The Look
The Berserker comes in a selection of different metal covers that look like well used pieces of weaponry. The colour choices are Black, Bronze & Silver. Pictured below is the Black set.

Summary & Soundclips
As I said at the top of this review these pickups have filled a gap in my collection and I can't see them changing for anything else any time soon. They provide a wide range of sounds that I could get with my other guitars but it would always sound a bit forced due to the Ceramic & Neodymium magnets with the Berserkers it sounds very thick & natural.

I would highly recommend these to anyone who is tired of the same old choices that we've been given all of these years and want something a little different and special.

The Price for a set is £82.45 which is an absolute bargain especially when paired with the fantastic customer service and sales support from the guys at Viking Pickups.

To purchase or enquire further about Viking Pickups contact Stefan on the link below.


8 October 2013

JCA22H Scoop (aka SRV) Mod

Back for ANOTHER instalment. So the third switch along in the last post is a mid scoop mod. HOWEVER that is not all that is going on here. We need to keep in mind that what was the crunch channel is now able to get pretty clean. I'm not sure how much I liked switching this mod on with more gain... anyway!

The scoop mod is again stolen from other Soldano products. Saying that... it's a pretty old concept and probably has a chapter of its own in the old "RDH4" as it's known (A kind of valve nerd bible). 

The mid scoop is activated by grounding a capacitor between two resistors which are bypassed by a second smaller value cap. This is called a Bridged T Filter. The top cap is usually small allowing high frequencies to the skip the filter. The lower cap is large enough to bleed off relevant frequencies but not large enough to bleed low end. Low end is attenuated as normal through the resistors. By disconnecting the cap from ground, we end up with a normal RC (Resistor Capacitor) Network. Highs skip the resistors and everything else is attenuated. The values of the components determine the effect.  

I wanted to fit this into the amp is a nice way. Luckily the PCB has lots of spots with space between tracks. After removing the board I drilled holes for two eyelets and removed the original parts I planned on replacing. 

Here are the eyelets put into place. It is awkward doing this with a populated PCB so a lot of care is needed! Don't do it if you shake around like Scooby Doo in an old fairground. 

Here is the T filter in place. The yellow cap is the Bridging cap, and the resistors and the little blue cap for the T. The purple wire goes off to the DPDT to switch the mod on or off. Now in the background of this photo you can also see a green wire which is connected to ground that goes off to the switch and another purple wire.

These wires form the next part of the mod. The green wire provides a ground point for filter when the switch is in the on position but it also acts as ground for a 22uf capacitor which when active, sits across the cathode resistor of the second gain stage in the Crunch channel. The reason I added the ground here is to keep this cap grounded at the base of that stages cathode resistor when in use.

 The 22uf Capacitor creates more gain at that stage for almost all audible frequencies. The graph below is just show as an example of a 22uf Cathode Bypass Cap on a stage with a 1M grid resistor. The effect of this cap coupled with the scoop mod means that not only are the mids scoop out but the lows and highs are also boosted which gives are really nice warm clean tone. I like this mod!

6 October 2013

JCA22H Crunch/Clean and Bright Switches

Next up! Adding the SLO100 style Crunch/Clean and Bright/Normal switches to the Crunch channel of the JCA22H.

These work by dropping in place of R5 which is just to the side of the Crunch channel gain control of the amp. The output of C2 feeds into the On-On DPDT switch via the purple wire on the left. When that switch is down the signal goes through that brown 475K resistor mounted vertically on the switch and then goes across to the next switch. This switch is an On-On SPDT with another 475K resistor. The signal passes through this second resistor and back to the DPDT were the white cable feeds the signal back to the PCB and to the Crunch gain pot. At this point there is an added 39K resistor connected between the signal and ground also by the DPDT switch. The two 475K resistors in series and the 39K resistor to ground form a "potential divider". This potential divider decreases the level of the signal going into the Crunch gain control. Reducing the gain of the channel at that point. 

When the switch is flipped up into Crunch mode the first 475K resistor is bypassed and the 39K resistor is no longer connected to the signal. This means there is now only a single 475K resistor in series with the Crunch gain control and no potential divider. Increasing the gain of the channel. 

The bright switch is very simple. It switches in and out a 470pf capacitor across the second 475K resistor. That resistor is always in circuit unlike the other resistors. The capacitor creates a way for high frequencies to bypass the resistor so the tone is brighter. Simple! 

This idea was directly stolen from the SLO100. If you are going to take ideas from any amp... you may as well do it from the SLO. Enough other people have!

The last switch on the right is the bright switch for the Overdrive channel. All this does is switch the bright cap that is usually across the pot (C6). I swapped both gain pots for 500K's so the bright cap in my amp is 1000pf. When the switch is down the amp is in its 'normal' mode so the capacitor is allowing high frequencies to partially bypass the Overdrive gain control. When the switch is up the cap is disconnected. In the SLO100 this is called the switchable Haynes mod.

This Bright switch is different to the other. The other bright switch is across a fixed resistor which means in effect it always works. The Haynes mod however doesn't. As you turn the gain pot up and decrease the resistance the signal is passing through, there will be a point where the frequencies not skipping through the cap will really be just as loud as the ones that are. At this point the cap is no longer adding any benefit to the highs, so switching the cap out will not dull the amp. For this reason this kind of switch works better at lower gain settings where the effect of the cap is much more noticeable.

The other DPDT switch we will leave for another day!

5 October 2013

Jet City JCA22H Choke Mod

Another common mod of the JCA22 or JCA20 is the 'Choke' mod. A choke is an inductor that sits in the high voltage power supply and aids noise filtering. Noise in the power supply can be things like rectification transients and other horrible stuff. In some situations a poorly filtered power supply can ping all kinds of horrid noises into your tone. Nobody likes horrid noises in their tone! The power supply is the heart of the amp can affect the feel and tone as much as any resistors or controls your guitar signal might go through. The high voltage supply in an amplifier is usually referred to at the B+ or HT (High Tension). The terminology comes from other areas of technology when valves were more widely used.

Power Resistors used to make filters are fine. Lots of amps have them. The 5150 has one for example. It's a bit of a brutish way to squash noise. All frequencies in the HT will see the resistance. With a choke the resistance met by a particular frequency will depend on what the frequency is itself. It's a bit like going out to a bar. You head over to one place and they might be frisking everybody and holding everyone up and nobody is getting through but that means there are less people inside (Resistor). Or you go elsewhere where you can walk straight in, unless you're already a mess and then the door staff are going to keep you out! (Choke)

R52 is where the power resistor was. I removed the PCB and then removed the resistor. Another difference between the resistor and the choke is that when you crank the amp and play really hard the valves will start to demand more current from the power supply. If there isn't enough current then HT voltage will drop... this is voltage sag.  As the voltage drops the tone of the amp changes because the HT voltage usually has a nominal relationship with each gain stage to give you particular feel and tone. The power resistor has a large series resistance which increases the effect of sag. The choke however has very low series resistance and therefore lessens the effect of sag. The choke will therefore also increase the HT voltage after it in any circumstance. This is why in some amps when a choke is added as a modification the screen grid resistors on the power valves also need to be changed to account for the voltage increase at the power valve screen supply.

Here is the choke mounted just behind the power transformer. I opted for a 5Henry @ 75mA choke. Henry is a measure of inductance. The mA rating tell you what current can be drawn through the item. There will also be a maximum voltage that can pass through the choke too!

 Here it is soldered in place. Done!

The keen eyed will have spotted that in that last photo there are some extra blue bits around the rectifier. While I had a lot of 10nf 2kV ceramic caps knocking about, I thought I'd add them here. 10nf caps across each rectifier diode help to share the voltage being rectified (turned from AC to DC) between the diodes and to suppress switching transients. Not sure if I can hear a difference... I just did it and thought I'd explain why! If the power supply is the heart of the amp, this is like giving it a wheatgrass smoothie every morning.

3 October 2013

Jet City JCA22H Depth Mod

Decided to do a BUNCH of mods to the JCA22 all at once... probably a bad move if I want to know the result of each mod individually but I had a bunch of stuff kicking around from projects I never started and left-overs from other things I've built over the years... so while this thing is in bits I'm going to let loose on it and then see what happens.

Starting with the Depth Mod...

There is a lot of info out there on this mod on different forums so Google is your friend. The Depth or Resonance control is a great little gizmo for pumping up that low end up like a Sir Mix-a-lot music video. This is the way I have decided to do it.

I have added a 1uf capacitor in series with the speaker jacks and the pot. This will keep any DC gremlins from getting up in my pot and making scratchy noises that I don't want when I turn the dial. I mounted the extra cap on some tag strip screwed down under one of the PCB mounts. Check it!

I picked the 1uf because I had a bag of 1uf caps and I've done the same mod with that exact same value before in some other amps, so whatever. The wires to the jacks and to the pot will also be soldered to the tag strip.

Above is the pot. It's actually one of the original gain pots from the amp. I changed those pots for 500K's as part of other mods (which I will write about later) so I decided to recycle one here for the Depth. It also means that the PCB will JUST about squeeze back underneath this pot. A new bigger pot might not be the best fit here and would also be jammed right next to the Standby switch! I'd stick a big pot on the back.

The white wire will be going back to the PCB to feed what is known as the Negative Feedback Resistor. The NFB resistor limits the amount of negative feedback the amp is getting. In this amp it is 47K (If I remember correctly while typing this!). NFB is also variable at different impedance taps on the output transformer secondary, so using the 8ohm or 16ohm output should get you different results. I intend to try both and see which I like best but 8ohm is normally where the NFB comes from in this amp. Using the 16ohm output will increase the amount of NFB going back to the amp.

The Presence and Depth controls both function using Negative Feedback. In this situation the NFB is a signal from the output of your amp, which is fed back into the amp at the Phase Inverter (PI). This signal is actually 'out of phase' with what is going on at the PI (That is why it is called negative and not positive!) so when out of phase frequencies in the NFB meet their counterparts at the PI they tend to subdue each other.

When you turn your Presence control up you actually remove high frequencies from the NFB signal. The means there are now less out of phase high frequencies in the NFB to damp down those same frequencies in the PI. The effect is a perceived high frequency boost. The Depth Control works the same way, but with the low frequencies. Higher frequencies will pass through the 4700pf cap and skip the pot, but the pot will impede lower frequencies more as it is turned up. Thus reducing damping on the low end.

All this also depends on how loud your amp is. The louder the amp the more signal you get at the speaker jacks. Hence the stronger an NFB signal you will get. This is the reason why Depth and Presence (or NFB based controls in general) will not seem to work at low volumes until at higher points on the dial. Once you start to crank the amp up and the NFB is stronger, these controls will become more effective at earlier points on the dials. So when you start gigging and you take your amp out, be sure to reevaluate your use of those dials depending on the volume difference between gig level and practice level. Cranking the Presence at high volume could take peoples heads off with treble and you might sound muddy with a cranked Depth pot!

24 September 2013

Jet City Amplification JCA22H Channel Select Switch Mod

SO... I added a channel select switch as job number one! It's a bit slap dash but whatever. It's a cheap amp and this is what you do with it!

The original wire going to 'FS' has been moved over the left (Yellow in the photo). The trace between two tip lugs on the switching jack has been cut, so now front panel switch is only in circuit when no external footswitch jack is in place. The wires to the switch are ground (white) and the original 'FS' point is now also wired to the switch (Purple). 

It's hard to make out but the trace is cut beneath the yellow wire.

It is possible to add an LED but I didn't. I use the down position as 'Normal' meaning Overdrive channel is selected, and up is 'Switch On'... meaning Crunch is selected. In most cases your ears can tell the difference between channels anyway.

Last of all, I swapped the fixed cable on the footswitch for a mono jack. I left enough cable so I had some play with the inner core and sleeve. What was the shield on the cable is wired to the sleeve tab on the socket, and what was the insulated inner core goes to the tip tab. Now I can use any cable I like with the footswitch!

22 September 2013

jet City JCA22H

So a while ago Tony dropped this site on me...

I've decided that once I've got my current project out of the way, I'd like to take a close look at a JCA.
I've gone and ordered the JCA22H. Hopefully service from the  site will be decent and it'll get here soonish.

I'm going to see what the deal with it is, and then maybe try out some of the SLO mods in it. See how just how SLO it will get and maybe try a few more things along the way. Document what goes on in this space. Woop!

18 August 2013

Well, it's been a while since I've posted anything here so thought I'd do a quick post.

I more than likely have some downtime coming up in a few weeks time so I plan on doing some indepth amp and pedal reviews, hopefully with clips, of the gear I have that's been built by Toe-Knee.

I'll post back more when I know for sure what's coming!

1 August 2013

5150II Repair Part II


Done (almost!)

So I had a think and decided to take off the burnt side of the ribbon cable and hard wire it to the PCB. I left the other end with the connector intact so that the PCB can still be removed by someone in future with relative ease compared to doing a total hard wire job.

The two pads carrying the filament AC were pretty bust up. Like a restaurant after Steven Seagal has popped off and put all the waiters through the decor. The bits of wire therefore loop through the pads and onto the next solder points for stability then it was all cleaned and checked out.

Here is a view some the other side.
And here it is all put back in the amp. The amp now runs with a consistent filament supply. All it needs now is new power valves and a bias check and away we go!

5150II Repairs

YO YO YO. Been a while since I made a post but here we go.

I was brought a 5150II that hadn't been turned on for a few years, then all of a sudden the owner powers it up an nothing is happening. No Jams. No Riddims. Nothin'.

So before turning it on I decide to take a peak under the hood.

This is the first thing I see. This plastic push on connector carries some connections between the power valve PCB and the main PCB. It's handy because you can pop out some of the PCB's in a modular fashion, but it's annoying because this tends to happen. The burn mark is the first tell tale sign of an old issue coming back to haunt the amp.

Under the main PCB is more substantial burn. A large section of the filament related traces has been destroyed. A previous repair has been done by bridging the burn with large gauge wire. This kind of thing is usually caused by a short inside a power valve which lands the high voltage onto the filament connections inside the bottle. This then zips back up the filament circuit and burns it up.

One tell tale sign of a valve failure is a busted Screen Grid Resistor. The white blocks on this PCB are what those are. In the 5150 series of amps these tend to be 100ohms. In a lot of amps running 6L6 type valves these tend to be 470ohm. Putting something up to 2Kohms would be fine here too. The bigger the value the more reliable your output valves will tend to be.

The middle two of these resistors had shorted. No connection through them. Burnt out. Since I need to get this thing running and I had no exact spares, I dug around and found some 470ohm replacements. PR03 series Vishay Metal Film's. These have a hefty element voltage, so in the event of a failure in future, the resistor should survive and the amps fuses should protect the amp.

Once the amp was put back together and the voltages had been checked, I stuck some valves in and... NOTHING! Turns out the filament supply to the valve sockets on this PCB is somewhat intermittent. The burns marks on the connector are on the pins carrying the filament voltage. It could be the case that this is an effect of an old fault, or it could be a new bit of burning causing an issue.

For now that is all the investigation I have done. Stay tuned for the resolution!

12 May 2013

Me$a MKIIC+ Build : Part 2

This update has very little information as not much has changed really.

I have installed all of the capacitors.

I aren't too familiar with the circuit so i went with safe bets on the cap choices. I'm using Mallory 150 alongside nichicon and Vishay electrolytic capacitors with a few Kemet & Vishay Tantalum capacitors.

12 April 2013

Me$a Simul-Class Style Output Transformer

Hi guys. This is going to be short and sweet as not much has happened.

It's just a quick update to show off the custom wound Simul-Class Output Transformer.

It took a heck of a lot of research finding all of the info regarding the Simul-Class architecture. After scouring the internet for a few months I found a wealth of information on the SLOclone forums (should have checked there first) And this is the result....

3 April 2013

Me$a MKIIC+ Build

Hey guys I've been pretty quiet lately due to work commitments and life in general.

I have always wanted a MKIIC+ with the Simul-class power amp, reverb and graphic EQ and have been watching eBay for years now and they all keep going for £2k+ or are in terrible condition.

So I finally decided that I should build one myself. This amp is easily the most complex thing that I have attempted and has taken a few months of research just to get my head around the circuit.

The PCB & Chassis are from Ampclones.com and they're incredibly well made and easy to solder to.

I haven't done much work on this yet as it's a pretty expensive build so i'm going to be doing it a bit at a time over the next 4-5 months.

I have the a custom Simul-Class output transformer on order from BLS Electronics. I am really looking forward to getting this after putting in so much time researching the output transformer design and I have wanted to try some BLS transformers for quite some time now.

Here is a picture of the chassis (I scuffed it unfortunately when jamming it back into the box but i'll just get some faceplates to cover the damage)

And here is a picture of the boards populated with resistors, diodes and transistors.

I will post more as the build progresses.

4 March 2013

Building a high gain amplifier part 2: The poweramp

Hey guys. I haven't been keeping up with this as well as I had hoped to but life gets in the way you know?

Today i'll give a brief overview of the poweramp. If you are using PCBs from C3amps or SmashGuitars this is all silkscreened so is an absolute breeze.

As usual I always start with the smallest components as it makes it far easier to keep things flush against the board as you build it up.

The smallest parts on the poweramp PCB are the balancing resistors for the filter caps which make sure that the caps see an even voltage. They also perform an additional function of bleeding away any voltage once the amp is powered off making it safer to work on which is a nice bonus. It does take a few minutes though so always check the voltages before working on the amp.

From here we move onto the diodes that form the rectifier for the AC input and also the bias supply. These have a polarity so make sure to check the circuit and silkscreen matches up with the way you insert them.

Also notice in this picture there is a jumper. This is one of the capacitor legs that I saved whilst doing the preamp. 

Next I install the axial capacitors for the bias and filtering. Again these are polarised so be mindful of this when soldering.

And finally moving onto the main filter caps. The F&T caps are truly fantastic for this application and they are what I will be using.

And that is all! Nice and simple just so long as you keep track of the polarities. The next post that I do will actually be wiring the preamp into the amp as I got my chassis predrilled and prepped from C3amps to save some time and work. I'm not going to say when the post will be up as everytime I do that something gets in the way so just keep checking back!


26 February 2013

Building a high gain amplifier part 1.5: The preamp continued.

I didn't get much time to take photos during this part as I was rushing somewhat as I had other things on later in the evening.

In this post you will see the board populated with the coupling & bypass caps. Some people will swear by one brand and type of cap whilst others will say that it doesn't make a blind bit of difference. In my experience it does but not as much as some would have you believe.

I have chosen Sprague 716p Orange Drops for the majority of the preamp because they have a certain hifi vibe to them that I like and seem well balanced tonally. For the 1uf bypass caps I have gone for Vishay MKT's, these are polyester caps and have more of a gritty feel to them. Another reason that I chose these for these positions is purely based on the physical size as a 225p orange drop is a really tight squeeze and  I like thing to look nice and clean in my builds so these are not an option.

Below is a quick comparison shot of the 225p and the MKT as you can see the 225p is gigantic!

In this next shot you can see the preamp fully populated with 716ps and the MKTs

And here is the lone Mallory 150 2.2nf cap as I forgot to order the 716p in this value. Luckily I had this kicking about.

And finally we have a bunch of leg cut offs from the caps. I'm going to save a couple of these as they will come in handy for the next post

In a few days I should have part 2 of this log up which is the power amp.

Thanks for reading

20 February 2013

Peak 2005 FCB4N2 Midi Controller

I've been waiting for this to arrive for a little while now. Customs had it for over a week and it seemed like they just didn't want to let it go. Chances are they couldn't figure out what it was so they kept on studying it!

Anyway onto the actual midi controller.

I'll start off with the the reasons why I went with the Peak unit rather than the usual suspects such as Voodoo Labs, Behringer etc.

I can't stand plastic looking controllers more so when they have plastic switches, it just screams cheap and nasty to me. The second reason was the price, at $149 this thing is a steal. Add to that the fact that it's really solid with sturdy metal switches and a nice clear display and you are clearly onto a winner.

The FCB4N2 also has a really nice black brushed metal finish which just adds a touch of class and looks very durable so I can't see it bending at all or easily getting damaged.

The unit was fairly simple to program after I got over my initial user error (retard moment) and as an added bonus the custom support & communication from Peak 2005 throughout the purchase was fantastic and I also had to contact Peak regarding my user error and got a very helpful and easy to understand reply.

I believe that this unit will hold up well on the road and if there any any issues I am sure that Peak will be there to back me up.

There isn't really much more to say regarding this as the unit looks and feels great and functions as it's supposed to. Beyond that it isn't really expected to do much more.

You can purchase the above controller from http://www.peak2005.com/j/midi-foot-controllers/15-fcb4n2-programmable-midi-foot-controller-ver20.html and also a number of other devices related to midi control.

4 February 2013

The Metal Man #2

Greetings everyone,

This is just an introductory post as I am the new contributor to this blog

In reference to the title, I like metal. I own a lot of Ibanez, and I play seven strings. And I've started building amps. So taking that apart, I'll be reviewing or 'blabbering' on about metal, guitars that I like and building amps and maybe even some funky guitar customisation madness.

So here's to me, and my corner of the blog!

18 January 2013

Roadkill Cabs Custom 2x12

This one took a while getting just right.

The idea behind it was to get something sounding in between a 2x12 & 4x12 as i love the punchiness of 2x12 cabs but i like the fullness of 4x12s but i hate the low end bloat they often have.

I went out and tried a fair few cabs and noted down what i did and didn't like about them as well as the dimensions/speaker placement etc

I then discussed things further with Tom @ Roadkill Cabs and he came up with the idea of altering the dimensions of his stag model and placing the speakers more towards the top of the cab for better projection into the room.

The internals of the cab are also kind of split into two 1x12s (i'll get some pics of this) rather than the usual single piece of wood for bracing to the back plate. This also seems a lot more substantial than what I have seen in a lot of cabs.

The result is exactly what i wanted. Very open,detailed and clear sounding cab with excellent highs, precise mids and a very tight low end without the additional resonance that you can get that can muddy up your sound.

Speakers are Legend V128s wired in series for 16ohm.

For now there is just a very quick pic. I will get some more tomorrow once I have moved all of the gear around.

Also the dimensions are as follows.
690 w x 490 h x 340 d

16 January 2013

10,000 Hits!

When I started writing this blog I figured that it would just be a place for me to keep tabs of what projects I have been working on and an archive of photos and such.

However it has had a nice steady stream of visitors with a few emails also.

I just want to say a big thankyou for taking the time to read my ramblings and hopefully you will stick with it as things start to expand over the coming months.

If you have any questions or feedback don't hesitate to get in touch.

Thanks again


EMG James Hetfield Signature Pickups (Het Set) Updated with audio sample.

I've had this set for just over a week now so I feel that I can give a fairly fair review of them.

First of all i'll get it out of the way that these aren't just the standard 81 & 60 in some flashy covers as most people expect them to be. I wanted a set of these for quite some time being a massive Metallica fan. Especially after hearing some newer live clips where James Hetfield has sounded amazing and cut through really well. From here on we can go into the main bulk of the review.

The Sound
These pickups have a fairly high output which is to be expected as they are designed exclusively for metal and of course they are EMG pickups.

They have a great helping of upper mids which was a pleasant surprise with just the right amount of grind going on there. They also have a touch more low end than than the standard EMG pickups but it is still very tight and precise with absolutely no excess flub. The high end is very upfront but isn't grating in any way and doesn't fizz out.

These pickups don't dissapoint for clean sounds either. The bridge provides that classic james hetfield clean sound, think of the Master of Puppets interlude or the intro of Welcome Home. The neck pickup is even nice r and delivers some very soft yet punchy clean sounds that work really well for things such as fade to black or the intro to and justice for all.

Clearly Metallica tones are very easily achievable with these pickups as are tones from any of the 80's metal bands. If this is what you are looking for then you will not be dissapointed with these pickups.

The Look
These pickups look very slick with a very nice black nickel finish with individual ceramic polepieces on the neck pickup and steel poles for the bridge pickup.

Summary & Soundclips
Overall I am extremely happy with these pickups. I play Thrash metal primarly and these pickups can cover everything I throw at them with ease from Metallica right up to modern Exodus. Usually when I swap pickups out I have some bad points that really niggle at me which is why I left this review for a while and so far i can't find a single fault.

12 January 2013

Naga Viper Treble Booster

I'm not going to say much on this as I built this for Brow so I'll let him going into more detail on it when he gets it. But for now here are a couple of pictures.

It's a really tiny circuit. I took this one for reference purposes.
 Here's the finished pedal 

And here's one more with it all powered up just for the sake of it!