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Author Topic: VHII Bridge Reveiw  (Read 5041 times)

fhn_lopes

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VHII Bridge Reveiw
« on: July 05, 2013, 09:01:27 PM »
Kiichi, feel free to add this to your thread if you like.

I'm doing this because I'm using this pickup in a different guitar and setup as the other reviews, and I think it is the most understimated BK pup, maybe because of it's name ?

Well, it's sitting in a Japanese Fender contemporary stratocaster (alder body, maple/rosewood neck), set almost 1cm from the strings. My amp is an 1976 MArshall JMP trhough a 1960 replica cab with 2 rola G12ms and 2 scumbacks M75s in X patern.
It indeed delivers the early brown sound growl and bite, but more in the VHII /Fair Warning era tone rather than VHI in terms of output. It can get VHI easily though with a good EQ or EP3-like boost. THe overall voicing is smoother and rounder than VHI tone (maybe that's why it's named VHII  :lol:) but with the same character.
With the amp all dimed, it SINGS, and I mean, REALLY sings in the lead tones, being nothing but thin. The feedback is beautifull too, and very controlable even at high volumes, very VH-ish. On chords, you can hear every single string, but the overall sound holds together nicely.
The low end is a bit looser but it does not get muddy at all, retaining the clarity that all BKP pups have. Think of "dance the night away" intro when Ed hits an open low E string. It gives you the impression that the low E has less gain than the rest of the strings. Funny, but it EXACTLY how it sounds. Even being a bit looser, the low end is very strong and the pup has a very good punch for palm mute stuf when boosted with a lo-pass filter kind of pedal.
The high end cuts well in the mix and it can get bright in a strat in a nice way, but again not VHI bright, more in VHII area. There's no fizz to the tone though. For leads, it's a solo machine, lots of sustain and body to each note, and it also helps ligattos and tappings to keep alive.
Can't say it is scooped in the mids, but they aren't  blackdogs. I beleave the mids are more focused in the low region and again in the high region, being a bit tamed in the 400 - 700hz. It's not 'nosey' or 'tubular'.
I bought it to get the early brown sound and it does deliver it in spades, with my gear. Played trhough a boogie, it sounds massive, full of low end chunk and punch, very good for high gain aplications, but you have to be carefull with the bass. Using a TS-like boost is recomended to tame the bass and tight up the mids for metal players. It also splits nicely.

But as said before here, it's really not an one trick pony. It delivers very ACDC ish tones with less gain and bass in the amp and it does metal tones very well with a high gain amp. It is very touch sensitive to pick attack and cleans up nice, but not jazzy clean if the amp is dimed. With a lower gain setting it can get from jazzy clean to classic rock crunch only in the guitar knob without any issue.

I'd like to hear it in a Ash/maple strat, very curious about how it would sound.

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Telerocker

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Re: VHII Bridge Reveiw
« Reply #1 on: July 06, 2013, 01:12:55 AM »
My VHII is in an ash Fender American Series strat with rosewood board. Your nice review is close to my experience. It's a great allround rock/hardpickup. Noncompressed, very touchsensitive, with a good balance and superb clarity, and no shrills highs although the treble is prominent. Kills on my Rockerverb 50.
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Kiichi

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Re: VHII Bridge Reveiw
« Reply #2 on: July 06, 2013, 03:12:38 AM »
Thanks for writing the review, added it to the library index.

Interresting view of the PU. Bit of an usual review in places, but in a nice way.

Have you tried a lot of height settings? Do you have pole pieces raised? I always thought my PUs usually being 4-5mm (max is like 6mm) from pole piece to string when fretted at the last fret was rather far. To hear you put them at almost 1cm makes we interrested how and why you arrived at that.
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fhn_lopes

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Re: VHII Bridge Reveiw
« Reply #3 on: July 08, 2013, 02:01:25 PM »
Thanks for writing the review, added it to the library index.

Interresting view of the PU. Bit of an usual review in places, but in a nice way.

Have you tried a lot of height settings? Do you have pole pieces raised? I always thought my PUs usually being 4-5mm (max is like 6mm) from pole piece to string when fretted at the last fret was rather far. To hear you put them at almost 1cm makes we interrested how and why you arrived at that.

I'll tell you why... making a long story short, it's the only way height possible right now  :lol: ... I bought it used a long time ago, it was originally long legged and I had to install it staight to the wood in a HH COrt I had in the past... to make it fit, I had to cut the long legs and make them short... In that procedure I lost the possibility for the screws to be tighten, and I use spacers to put it in the height I want in my strat now, so it's not an easy thing to raise it allthough I can do it if I want.   :shock: :shock:

I know it was dumb but that's what I had to do, living in Brazil leaves me no option for sending it back to UK to put it into a different baseplate... whatever... It works DAMN fine and if you think of Ed's pup height, it's probably very close if you think he screwed the gibson pup straight into the wood in his franky...As this axe is a keeper (even for a trade maniac like me), it's not a big deal to leave it like that.

Never tried to raise pole pieces though, going to try for sure.
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Dave Sloven

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Re: VHII Bridge Reveiw
« Reply #4 on: July 08, 2013, 09:49:35 PM »
With the amp all dimed, it SINGS, and I mean, REALLY sings in the lead tones, being nothing but thin.

Nice review, very helpful.  The only part that had me confused was the sentence above, because the context seems to suggest that the sound is not thin, so I am wondering if that is a typo and you meant 'anything but thin'?
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Kiichi

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Re: VHII Bridge Reveiw
« Reply #5 on: July 08, 2013, 10:14:47 PM »
Thanks for the info on the height. Although it is situational it motivates me to try even more extreme height settings as it seems to work for you.

Raising the pole pieces is always worth a shot imho, one of the best things you can do in my book. I usually like to raise them like 1mm total. Raising them gives you more treble, focus and definition. This results in a even clearer, tighter tone with better string seperation. Personally I canīt live without anymore =9
BKPs in use: 10th set / RY set / Holy Diver b, Emerald n / Crawler bridge, Slowhand mid MQ neck/ Manhattan n
On the sidelines: Stockholm b / Suppermassive n, Mule n, AM set, IT mid

fhn_lopes

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Re: VHII Bridge Reveiw
« Reply #6 on: July 09, 2013, 12:55:43 PM »
With the amp all dimed, it SINGS, and I mean, REALLY sings in the lead tones, being nothing but thin.

Nice review, very helpful.  The only part that had me confused was the sentence above, because the context seems to suggest that the sound is not thin, so I am wondering if that is a typo and you meant 'anything but thin'?

 :P :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

Yes, I feel stupid. Sorry for my bad english.

Kiichi that's some good info right there! Not sure if I need more treble but more focus and a tighter tone may change things arround here... Maybe I can drop the mids in My GE10 a bit and make it sound even more natural (BTW what a GREAT pedal for boosting old tube amps, it's the clearest boost I've ever tried and it gives you TONS of gain without hiss or hum. A keeper for sure.)
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blackstrat

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Re: VHII Bridge Reveiw
« Reply #7 on: July 13, 2013, 02:49:52 AM »
Hi, have you tried the rebel yell? From 'hair metal' clips on BkP website, RY sounds like VH2 with more saturation.

ericsabbath

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Re: VHII Bridge Reveiw
« Reply #8 on: July 13, 2013, 06:35:58 AM »
the vhII seems to have a lot more bass and less mids than the rebel yell
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fhn_lopes

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Re: VHII Bridge Reveiw
« Reply #9 on: July 15, 2013, 05:39:55 PM »
Hi, have you tried the rebel yell? From 'hair metal' clips on BkP website, RY sounds like VH2 with more saturation.

I never played a rebell yell but from what I could hear, I think the RY is a more middy pup, tighter low end with sweeter highs... VHII is incisive in the high end allthough it's not terribly bright (I recon it was made to fit strats so it can't be too bright) and has a smoother and looser low end... more vintage voiced for that to say.

I think Eric is right on his coment.
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darkbluemurder

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Re: VHII Bridge Reveiw
« Reply #10 on: July 16, 2013, 02:27:59 PM »
I know both the VHII Bridge and the Rebel Yell Bridge and I concur with Eric's comparison.

Cheers Stephan