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Author Topic: Holy diver didn't work out, Impulse is getting there but...  (Read 430 times)

Charlie-AKA

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Holy diver didn't work out, Impulse is getting there but...
« on: November 01, 2020, 10:54:15 AM »
Hi guys, I just got an alder body/maple neck/ebony board Kiesel HH tele and it plays like a dream. But I can't get the tone I want dialed in yet. First I tried a Holy Diver bridge with an Impulse neck. Neck tone is amazing, but not the bridge tone. With the HD it was a mess, flubby, loose lows and a throaty sound, like using a neck pickup to play low power chords. DIdn't matter how I adjusted the height. Next I tried an Impulse bridge and it's a massive improvement but I'm still not quite where I want to be. I have to raise the mids on the EQ or use a tube screamer to tighten up the lows.

Fortunately I have a few other BKP's on hand that I can borrow from my other guitars. I need the lows tightened up. My playing style is classic rock/classic metal and I use amp sims (Helix with a powercab 112), my main ones are Friedman BE100, 5150, Dr Z Rt 66, and Engl Fireball based.
The BKP bridge PUs on hand are the Rebel Yell, VHII, Juggernaut, ceramic Nailbomb, and the Silo. The jugg may not have enough lead left for another swap though (bought it used). What to try first? I'm leaning toward the RY because it solved a similar tone problem in another guitar, but that guitar was a neck through mahogany guitar. I also have a Crawler on order but who know when that will get here.
Currently: Silo, Rebel Yell, Crawler, VHII, Juggernaut, Holy Diver, Impulse, Cold Sweat neck, Impulse neck, Aftermath neck.
Formerly: C-Bomb, Piledriver, Cold Sweat, Mule, all my non-BKPs 😉

Dave Sloven

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Re: Holy diver didn't work out, Impulse is getting there but...
« Reply #1 on: November 01, 2020, 11:33:10 AM »
I have always thought that the alnico Black Hawk would be a good match for the Impulse neck

BUT ... if the Impulse bridge is not tight enough for you I'd say that you need to take a closer look at the rest of your setuo.  The RY will be about the same as the Impulse, everything else will be looser in the bottom end

It's quite common to need something like a tube screamer to tighten up amps

The problem is likely to be something in the guitar.  Have you considered changing the bridge??  The Babicz bridge is so beefy it probably sounds the same no matter what wood you use

BLACK HAWKS
IMPULSES
WAR PIGS
STOCKHOLM
COLD SWEATS
MIRACLE MAN

https://slovendoom.bandcamp.com/releases

Charlie-AKA

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Re: Holy diver didn't work out, Impulse is getting there but...
« Reply #2 on: November 01, 2020, 12:30:03 PM »
Itís got a chrome hipshot bridge, graphtech tusq nut, stainless jumbo frets. I checked my wiring because it was like the bridge pickup sounded almost the same as the neck pickup. Itís got two BKP 550k pots and a .022uf BKP tone cap. I tune down half a step. Would a different bridge tighten everything up? Also what about the pickups being direct mounted (which they are) vs using pickup rings?
Currently: Silo, Rebel Yell, Crawler, VHII, Juggernaut, Holy Diver, Impulse, Cold Sweat neck, Impulse neck, Aftermath neck.
Formerly: C-Bomb, Piledriver, Cold Sweat, Mule, all my non-BKPs 😉

Dave Sloven

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Re: Holy diver didn't work out, Impulse is getting there but...
« Reply #3 on: November 01, 2020, 01:04:51 PM »
I really can't imagine a'tighter' pickup than the Impulse.  I guess you could try an Aftermath or maybe an EMG 81

I tend to think that the problem is elsewhere.

The Black Hawks are similar to the Impulse but more output and mids.  Ceramic Black Hawk might be an option but they can have a lot of top end.  I tend to think that it is no tighter than the Impulse.  it just has more mids and more highs, plus a lot more bass.  The Aftermath is probably the mids machine

The alnico BH is kind of like a ceramic BH with some HD DNA.  Probably not what you want.  Very throaty in the mids, nice rounded off top end compared to the ceramic version.

BLACK HAWKS
IMPULSES
WAR PIGS
STOCKHOLM
COLD SWEATS
MIRACLE MAN

https://slovendoom.bandcamp.com/releases

Charlie-AKA

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Re: Holy diver didn't work out, Impulse is getting there but...
« Reply #4 on: November 02, 2020, 01:27:34 AM »
The problem was elsewhere like you said. My fault! I had wired the switch wrong so that in the bridge position I wasn't getting just the bridge signal, it was the neck signal or both, not sure, but I fixed it and the Holy Diver works perfectly. Lesson learned.
Currently: Silo, Rebel Yell, Crawler, VHII, Juggernaut, Holy Diver, Impulse, Cold Sweat neck, Impulse neck, Aftermath neck.
Formerly: C-Bomb, Piledriver, Cold Sweat, Mule, all my non-BKPs 😉

Dave Sloven

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Re: Holy diver didn't work out, Impulse is getting there but...
« Reply #5 on: November 02, 2020, 07:36:50 AM »
Oh good!  Yes blade switches can be tricky to wire up
BLACK HAWKS
IMPULSES
WAR PIGS
STOCKHOLM
COLD SWEATS
MIRACLE MAN

https://slovendoom.bandcamp.com/releases

Dave Sloven

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Re: Holy diver didn't work out, Impulse is getting there but...
« Reply #6 on: November 02, 2020, 07:38:21 AM »
If you put the Impulse bridge in there now you will probably complain that it is too tight for rock music
BLACK HAWKS
IMPULSES
WAR PIGS
STOCKHOLM
COLD SWEATS
MIRACLE MAN

https://slovendoom.bandcamp.com/releases

Telerocker

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Re: Holy diver didn't work out, Impulse is getting there but...
« Reply #7 on: November 02, 2020, 07:02:16 PM »
Your axe, amps and Diver.. I could not believe that would be a flubby mess at all. ))) Luckily it isn't. If the tone is that far off it's usually a problem with the wiring/cap/pots or a broken pickup which I never had with any BKP.
Mules, VHII, Crawler, MM's, IT's, BG50's.

Charlie-AKA

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Re: Holy diver didn't work out, Impulse is getting there but...
« Reply #8 on: November 03, 2020, 12:04:00 AM »
As usual, you guys are an excellent resource!
Currently: Silo, Rebel Yell, Crawler, VHII, Juggernaut, Holy Diver, Impulse, Cold Sweat neck, Impulse neck, Aftermath neck.
Formerly: C-Bomb, Piledriver, Cold Sweat, Mule, all my non-BKPs 😉

Dave Sloven

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Re: Holy diver didn't work out, Impulse is getting there but...
« Reply #9 on: November 03, 2020, 01:03:15 AM »
If you wire the switch incorrectly you can end up with the middle position everywhere easily

Still interested to hear what you think of the Impulse bridge now.

If you like both the Impulse and Holy Diver bridges the hybrid of them would be the alnico Black Hawk.
BLACK HAWKS
IMPULSES
WAR PIGS
STOCKHOLM
COLD SWEATS
MIRACLE MAN

https://slovendoom.bandcamp.com/releases

Charlie-AKA

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Re: Holy diver didn't work out, Impulse is getting there but...
« Reply #10 on: November 03, 2020, 02:55:05 AM »
Now I want to try the alnico Black Hawk. Once I got the blade switch wired correctly I put the Holy Diver bridge in, loved it, and I haven't wanted to change it so I don't know what the Impulse bridge sounds like in this guitar. But I had the Impulse bridge in two other guitars for a period, both of them neck through mostly mahogany guitars and it's a great pickup for me, exactly my style. Only reason I didn't keep it in either of those guitars is that one of them I decided to sell, and the other was one I had ordered a Rebel Yell bridge for. The RY took months to arrive (covid slowed down the mail horribly here) so I had the impulse in it temporarily. It's a versatile pickup. Right now I'm keeping it around as a "backup" pickup and eventually I'm sure it'll wind up in a guitar that I keep it in permanently.

One pleasant surprise in this situation was the Impulse neck pickup. With lots of overdrive it picks up pinch harmonics better than any other neck pickup I've used. It also has a great clean tone. The clean kind of reminds me of 80s Metallica clean tones (ie "One", "Welcome home sanitarium," etc.).
Currently: Silo, Rebel Yell, Crawler, VHII, Juggernaut, Holy Diver, Impulse, Cold Sweat neck, Impulse neck, Aftermath neck.
Formerly: C-Bomb, Piledriver, Cold Sweat, Mule, all my non-BKPs 😉

Dave Sloven

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Re: Holy diver didn't work out, Impulse is getting there but...
« Reply #11 on: November 03, 2020, 06:27:22 AM »
The alnico Black Hawk has similar tonal characteristics to the Holy Diver and Impulse but it is more powerful than either.  Josh Smith said that the Impulse is roughly 75% the output of a Black Hawk and I'd say that's about right.  I think that it would be pretty easy to balance with the Impulse neck though, certainly no more so than a Cold Sweat neck and a Miracle Man bridge, which is a common combo
BLACK HAWKS
IMPULSES
WAR PIGS
STOCKHOLM
COLD SWEATS
MIRACLE MAN

https://slovendoom.bandcamp.com/releases

Dave Sloven

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    • Get our album here (alnico Black Hawks)
Re: Holy diver didn't work out, Impulse is getting there but...
« Reply #12 on: November 03, 2020, 11:44:05 AM »
Here's a couple of demos of the alnico Black Hawk that gives some idea of its versatility.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iI-jQIykk-o

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ud0KgY1N_4o
BLACK HAWKS
IMPULSES
WAR PIGS
STOCKHOLM
COLD SWEATS
MIRACLE MAN

https://slovendoom.bandcamp.com/releases

Telerocker

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Re: Holy diver didn't work out, Impulse is getting there but...
« Reply #13 on: November 03, 2020, 10:32:55 PM »
As usual, you guys are an excellent resource!

Well, honour goes to Dave here. But ehh, did you post that Kiesel here? I read positive things about this brand.
Mules, VHII, Crawler, MM's, IT's, BG50's.

Charlie-AKA

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Re: Holy diver didn't work out, Impulse is getting there but...
« Reply #14 on: November 04, 2020, 11:01:25 AM »
Iíll make another post in the picture thread with a pic, but yeah itís a perfect guitar. I custom ordered it from Kiesel and paid it off over the 4 months they took to make it. Special options I got were the thin neck, satin finish, stainless jumbo frets, hipshot hardtail bridge and thin neck. My number one is a Charvel with a silo bridge and the Kiesel has quickly become its equal. Amazing playability. It was about $1300 USD, a good deal imo especially since you can pick the color and woods. I have a Carvin (same company but they changed their name to Kiesel) with a similar slick, high quality feel and with jumbo stainless frets but itís neck through and all mahogany with two maple stripes in the 5 piece neck, a TOM bridge, flamed maple top, a totally different animal. That one has a RY bridge and Aftermath neck (awesome neck pu btw). That guitar has more of a Les Paul feel and tone whereas the Charvel and Kiesel feel like 80s shredder guitars (minus a Floyd rose). Iím debating drilling a third knob hole in the Carvin so I can have a neck tone control and Iíll put in a .015uf BKP cap. That had amazing results when I did it on another guitar. All 7 of my guitars at this point have BKPs, BKP 550k pots, and BKP caps. Iíve gone full fan boy during this covid era.
Currently: Silo, Rebel Yell, Crawler, VHII, Juggernaut, Holy Diver, Impulse, Cold Sweat neck, Impulse neck, Aftermath neck.
Formerly: C-Bomb, Piledriver, Cold Sweat, Mule, all my non-BKPs 😉