Vintage Guitar - July 2016 - Open - 131
Mojotone '58 Quiet
Coil Strat Pickups
layers love that single-coil sound but
hate the noise and hum that generally
come with them. For the most part, "noiseless" pickups, whether stacked coils, sideby-side coils, or other designs, have meant
something of a compromise between tone
and hum-free operation.
The new Mojotone '58 Quiet Coil Strat
Pickups use traditional side-by-side coils with
blade poles for hum canceling, but also incorporate traditional vintage-style single coil
components in their design, such as 42-gauge
heavy formvar wire, standard-height fiber
bobbins, custom-formulated patented alnico
5-style magnets (instead of plain steel blades
with a magnet underneath), and cloth-covered
lead wires - all to capture true single-coil tone.
The Mojotone '58s also match the DC
resistance, inductance, resonant peak frequency, and capacitance of 1950s single-coil
pickups and even feature faux staggered
pole pieces to convey a vintage appearance.
The pickups utilize standard mounting
hardware, a five-way pickup selector, and
500K potentiometers, which means they are
drop-in replacements - no mods needed.
We received a trio of tester Mojotone
'58 Quiet Coils preinstalled in a custom
Frankenstrat with a maple neck and fretboard and plugged it into both Vox AC10
(EL84/12AX7) and Fender Blues Junior
(EL84/12AX7) tube combo amps.
The Quiet Coils offered up plenty of that
high-end bell tone sizzle associated with true
single-coil pickups. The set was also well balanced with a bright and snappy bridge pickup,
a punchy middle pickup, and a throaty neck
pickup, not to mention tons of quake in the
two and four positions.
As their name suggests, the
Quiet Coils show little to no effect in
any of the selector positions from other
electronics or whether the guitar is facing
the amp. We did experience a bit of noise
when dialing in heavier overdrive on the
amps, but nothing out of the ordinary.
The Quiet Coils have an (very) slightly
fatter sound than traditional single-coils
with the overdrive on, but retain the highend snap, clarity, and note separation of
true single-coils. That 1950s single-coil
tone with silent operation might seem like
something of a pipe dream, but Mojotone
'58 Quiet Coils offer just that: a classic Strat
single-coil bell tone with quiet, noiseless
operation. - Phil Feser
Graph tech ratiO Balanced
Price: $79.95 singles; $229.95 trio;
$299.95 pickguard assembly (list)
siB charGer Guitar
SIB's Charger is a fully functional
guitar amp head in a pedal-sized/allsteel housing. Its preamp is tuned for
guitar and its power section delivers
20 to 50 watts depending on speaker
configuration. Controls include Volume,
Bass, Treble, and master Volume.
The Electro-Harmonix Mel9 Tape
Replay Machine replicates nine Mellotron sounds and has controls for
Effect and Dry volume, Attack (volume
swell speed) and Sustain. Its Dry
Output sends signal at unity gain.
Graph Tech Guitar labs' Ratio Balance
Geared Machine Heads include brushedaluminum adapter plates that match
most mounting-screw configurations.
They are available in locking and nonlocking types and a variety of finishes.