- Apr 24, 2002
I'm not saying anything about it one way or another, I'm just posting a quote from the company's website. I only found it an odd way to deal w/an issue that I guess has occurred somewhere else on the internet. I don't have the time to dig down & find discussions about the pickups on other fora. If I did, I would look to see who is doing the posting as much as the actual reviews themselves, whether pro or con.
Isn't it odd? I'll say this, from what I saw the pickups were well made, not mish mash wound on a sewing machine, but all the hoopla did not match the performance. The online hyperbole is super tactile, ultra responsive detailed pickups. When compared, like I said to standard issue SD pickups they did not perform better or provide any additional response, feel or tone. We played a variety of my guitars, Tommy's excellent 57 Strat and 62 ES 355 which had the VA pickups, and bone stock Custom Shop Fender Strats and R9's.
We all felt that at best they equaled the excellent $60-$90 SD's and did not surpass the the Fender or Gibson stock Custom Shop pickups. That simple really. I will have to call Tom and find out if he was able to get a return on the pickups as he was not going to keep them. This was very similar to the Doyle Coil experience where a very highly touted and expensive pickup did not match the hype. Yes, it is all very subjective and people likes what they like, but in this case an anonymous fictitious "winder" with apparently a hidden shop, which bears all the hallmarks of subcontracted, OEM rebranded, sourced and relabeled product intentionally done to mislead buyers from their true origin.
It is like having GFS make me up a bunch of pickups and I put them in my box with a fancy made up name and used the internet to hype the identity of my fictitious winder and the special properties of these magical ultra high end pickups which I would sell at a magical high end price. In the end it is nothing short of internet marketing and a massive PUMP.
Bullchip can pound all the sand he wants, but I can't recommend these pickups or justify the price and IMO they are nothing special. Has any`one noticed how similar the bull chipper in his sudden appearance and style bears a remarkable similarity to the other hot air spewing Stevens episode? Hmmmm?:hmm
I'll say this, if I am going to spend big bucks on premium Vintage flavored pickups it will be with Jon Gundry. Honest and open, full transparency in his builds and mission. Absolute high quality and attention to detail and an honest passion for doing it right. The same applies for my friend Seymour Duncan, ( who I feel makes the best all around line of pickups, period), and the good folks at DiMarzio, Fralin, Lollor, Harmonic Design, Rio Grande, and on and on. This Virgo Arlo method of duping, by it's very deceptive nature starts out with false premiss and is insulting in it's scope to mislead. Some may feel it's OK, but I do not. That is my opinion and my experience so pound all the sand you want, Mr Shill, it doesn't change anything.