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Unread 05-15-2010, 02:10 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Gibson 498T vs 500T

My 1980 Les Paul Standard has PAF's in it. I want a hotter pickup for the bridge. I use 498T's in my other guitars but have never used a 500T which a couple of friends have suggested. Any thoughts or comments are welcomed.

Thanks.

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Unread 05-15-2010, 02:19 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Re: Gibson 498T vs 500T

I find the 500T too trebly and thin sounding.
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Unread 05-15-2010, 03:06 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Re: Gibson 498T vs 500T

I have the Explorer with the 498/500 pickups. Depending on the amp and the type of speakers used, it can sound good. I use what I call my "Blue's Cab" with the Explorer. The speakers roll off at around 4.3KHz and this smooths out the 500.

We all know there are many variables at play here. How low do the strings ride? What brand of strings do you use? Do you have a bright amp? What about the speakers? Are they bright too?

When I played the 500 with G12-75's, it had too much treble. The particular amp had NOS tubes and was pretty smooth. I plugged into the Blue's Cab and it sounded a lot better.

I think Gibson got all caught up in the pickup wars and while the 500 is a hot one, it has it's limitations. I don't think being the hottest makes it the best. I think there are probably some better pickups that are not as hot as a 500, but overall sound better in a variety of amps. I would be happy if the Explorer had come with a DiMarzio PAF in the neck and a Super Distortion in the bridge. That's on my to do list.
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Unread 05-15-2010, 03:12 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Re: Gibson 498T vs 500T

Duncan JB. Inexpensive and excellent.
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Unread 05-15-2010, 04:13 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Re: Gibson 498T vs 500T

Thanks for the feed back guys. Think I will stay with the 498T's.

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Unread 05-15-2010, 04:29 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Re: Gibson 498T vs 500T

i have not played enough on these two pick ups to know them very well , but how do the 498T and the 500T sound compared to the DUNCAN JB ?
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Unread 05-15-2010, 04:35 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Re: Gibson 498T vs 500T

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Originally Posted by HOT TUBES 70 View Post
i have not played enough on these two pick ups to know them very well , but how do the 498T and the 500T sound compared to the DUNCAN JB ?
I personally think the 498T is thicker and hotter than the JB or Pearly Gates. With a 498T I can plug straight into a JCM800 2210 with no pedal and record an entire CD. "New Religion" I just wanted to ask some of you what you thought of the 500T and it sounds as if it was an attempt at making a high Output Pickup without consideration given to frequencie response. Guess I should stick with what I know but being a guitarist I am always listening for improvments. "G.A.S."!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Unread 05-15-2010, 05:01 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Re: Gibson 498T vs 500T

I think the best Gibson pickups are the '57 classic and classic plus.. You can't go wrong..
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Unread 05-15-2010, 06:13 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Re: Gibson 498T vs 500T

I prefer the 500T by a wide margin to the 498T. Much more bite and nice thick midrange tones with the 500T. Had a Les Paul DC Standard with a 498T and just couldn't get the thing to cut through the mix like I can with my Flying V with the 500T. To each his/her own, I guess...
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Unread 05-15-2010, 08:48 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Re: Gibson 498T vs 500T

The 500T is Smoking hot in a thin-solid bodied S.G or a Les paul Special with no Maple cap with Top heavy 52-10 strings and a 1meg pot run through a 6-10 cab or a 2x15 cab. It cut's through that way best like no other.
I know Page used it for a While. Can't remember exactly what era or on what songs. I've got a few of them and they work real good in a Basswood bodied Axe also and it turned my "Cat" Guitar into a Honk-in Scream-in Monster that I love.
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Unread 05-15-2010, 09:38 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Re: Gibson 498T vs 500T

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I prefer the 500T by a wide margin to the 498T. Much more bite and nice thick midrange tones with the 500T. Had a Les Paul DC Standard with a 498T and just couldn't get the thing to cut through the mix like I can with my Flying V with the 500T. To each his/her own, I guess...
Thick midrange tones? No way. I still have these in my Explorer and I can't wait to get some decent replacements in.
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Unread 05-16-2010, 06:59 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Re: Gibson 498T vs 500T

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Thick midrange tones? No way. I still have these in my Explorer and I can't wait to get some decent replacements in.
It's working for me - what can I say? It's been a much better sounding and performing pickup.
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Unread 05-16-2010, 03:04 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Re: Gibson 498T vs 500T

Here David. This is a thread I started on this subject. I hope it helps.

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Unread 05-16-2010, 03:19 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Re: Gibson 498T vs 500T

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Here David. This is a thread I started on this subject. I hope it helps.

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Thank you Marty.
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Unread 05-16-2010, 03:29 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Re: Gibson 498T vs 500T

I don't go after the hottest, just the one's that sound good. There are a lot of tried and true standards out there right now. You really can't go wrong with any of them
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Unread 05-16-2010, 10:51 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Re: Gibson 498T vs 500T

Here's a chart you may find useful. It's a comparison between various Gibson pups.

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Unread 05-17-2010, 12:01 AM   #17 (permalink)
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Re: Gibson 498T vs 500T

The Burstbucker Pro which is a bit hotter than the '57 sounds pretty damn good in my LP Custom but I have yet to try a 498T or other hotter pickups. Looking to try a set of Bare Knuckles (Miracle Man) pickups in my V. They sounded awesome in all the clips I've heard. Pretty hot pickup w/o being too much.
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Unread 05-17-2010, 03:52 AM   #18 (permalink)
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Re: Gibson 498T vs 500T

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Duncan JB. Inexpensive and excellent.
+1 on the JB, my favourite passive pickup
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Unread 05-18-2010, 07:36 AM   #19 (permalink)
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Re: Gibson 498T vs 500T

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Unread 05-21-2010, 11:54 AM   #20 (permalink)
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Re: Gibson 498T vs 500T

321 006.jpgi tried a set of zakk wylde emgs in one of my les pauls its crazy how much more tone control they have
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Unread 05-21-2010, 06:47 PM   #21 (permalink)
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Re: Gibson 498T vs 500T

I'm new to the forum but I've tried alot of different pups over the years. I always love 57's, classic or plus. Please don't flame me JB lovers, but that is one of my most memorable "Pickup Dissapointments". Not much of a Duncan Custom fan either. With all the hype I was sure I would love both and wasn't happy with either. I have Duncans now, a set of '59's that I really like. But I don't like a very hot pickup so maybe that's the deal.
Also I have been the victim of "pickup phrenia" in the past...you can drive yourself nuts trying to find the perfect one. They all sound different in each guitar and it's such a subjective thing that it's tough to go by other's opinions.
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Unread 05-22-2010, 09:40 AM   #22 (permalink)
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Re: Gibson 498T vs 500T

My favorite Les Paul...a classic...has the 500t in the bridge and it rocks like nuts. However...I lowered the pickup down from the strings to get the tone a wanted. Also, if I'm playing blues or classic rock...I back my volume knob down to about 7.5. Gives me a really nice solid tone. If I ramp it up I can get anything up to Megadeth out of that guitar. I love it...

So...love burstbuckers...have some guitars with SD JBs and '59 classics...they all sound good. But...nothing wrong with the 500T...it's my favorite guitar. Just need to tweak the pickup height and plays with your volume and tone knobs on the guitar to dial in your desired aggresiveness and tone. Just an old guys two cents...
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Unread 11-12-2012, 01:35 PM   #23 (permalink)
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Re: Gibson 498T vs 500T

Just read the 498 is a 500 exactly coil wise but with Alnico magnets. So Im guessing 498 is similar to a JB?
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Unread 11-12-2012, 03:09 PM   #24 (permalink)
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Re: Gibson 498T vs 500T

i like the 500T's but i've found as usual the older ones sound better. I use the half gold pole versions from the 90's that came in certain les paul models from that time and they sound really good. nice compression and sing, tight but with some character and they DO clean up well. the new ones i've used are all kinda stiff though and i don't like them.

i don't know if it's just the coils being broken in more or general aging or if they manufactured the 90's ones differently but they sound great whereas the new ones do not.

mine are all rated at roughly 17.7K as well. VERY hot.
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Unread 11-12-2012, 03:11 PM   #25 (permalink)
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Re: Gibson 498T vs 500T

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Originally Posted by ezsemanate View Post
Just read the 498 is a 500 exactly coil wise but with Alnico magnets. So Im guessing 498 is similar to a JB?
the 500T is ceramic. the 498 is alnico 5 or V magnet.

the 500T does sound similar. it actualy to my ears (the ones i use anyway) sound like a 57 on steroids whereas the 498 sounds awesome but has a loose kaboose. i don't like the low end on the 498's. if they adjusted that about them they'd be PERFECT imo.
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Unread 11-12-2012, 03:56 PM   #26 (permalink)
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Re: Gibson 498T vs 500T

498T pups are ok with the tone knob rolled off. 500T don't cut it. Way to hot and lack any worthy tone IMO.
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Unread 11-12-2012, 05:42 PM   #27 (permalink)
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Re: Gibson 498T vs 500T

I personally love the 500T. Probably because it's the sound of a lot of the music I grew up on. Mostly metal... Swedish metal!

Yep, a good ol' Gibson V or Explorer with a 500T, Boss HM-2 pedal, and a Marshall. Puts a smile on my face every time.

I can see how it would not work so much for some people. It has a unique sound to my ears. Love it or hate it, it's all
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Unread 11-12-2012, 07:20 PM   #28 (permalink)
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Re: Gibson 498T vs 500T

500T and metal are a tonal marriage. I play classic rock so the 500T is like a volcano ready to erupt out of my Marshalls. Even the 498 is a little too hot for me. I much prefer a lower output pup that offers more tone and boost the signal chain to get beef vs trying to tame a molten hot pup. I can understand the appeal of the hottor, more modern voiced pups.
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Unread 11-13-2012, 11:58 AM   #29 (permalink)
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Re: Gibson 498T vs 500T

Dave,
500t pickup uses ceramic magnets. For me? YUCK..they all have this annoying kind of metallic sound in between note passages...I prefer pickups with the hot Alinico V magnet. Similar output without the annoyance and far warmer. 498t is an excellent pickup imo, but I actually PREFER Dimarzio's Tone Zone (DP155)...similar in design and output as the 498t, but much thicker...and really works well with Gibsons making them sound more like Gibsons...I ADORE the Tone Zone man!!
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Unread 11-13-2012, 12:15 PM   #30 (permalink)
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Re: Gibson 498T vs 500T

I'm a firm believer in a real set of Tim Shaws from the 80's. I also had a set of custom pickups made by BrandonWound, real rough cast Alnico IV original magnets, and wire off a spool of plain enamel made in 1954. No mud in those babys.
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