The Stratocaster guitar pick-up configuration is one of the most versatile pick-up set ups around. The struggle has always been all about the noise. I know as a pro player on the circuit, the noise that accompanies single coil pick-ups makes stop just short of pulling my hair out. Over the years, many companies have introduced stacked single coil sized “humbuckers” to the pick-up game. While many fall short of sounding like a genuine single coil, a few companies like Dimarzio, with their Virtual Vintage series, and LACE, with their Holy Grail series, actually have come up with designs that hit the mark.
During this time, Lindy Fralin has been quietly concocting his own pick-up magic to enter into the noiseless single coil pick-up race. Available in a Vintage, Blues and High Output wind, the new Fralin Split Blade Pickups pick-ups really stand out with their slightly off center look and killer tone. All three sets come with a bridge pickup that’s wound 10% hotter. The question on everyone’s mind is “how do they sound?”. As an experiment, I picked up a middle and a neck in a Blues output to pair up with a Fralin High Output humbucker in the bridge. The assembly went into my workhorse Strat style guitar that I affectionately call “Bones”. I use this guitar with my cover band Left Of Eden to get tones from band like The Killers, The Police, U2 all the way to Van Halen, ZZ Top, and Led Zeppelin. I need a guitar that can get me tons of sounds in a pinch.
The Split Blades sound amazing and even retain the clarity in the 2 and 4 positions. They have tons of vibe, sustain and inter string balance. They even keep up with the High Output Custom Fralin humbucker that puts out 13K of DC resistance! I’m a tough cookie to please when it comes to pick-ups. I’m ultra fussy and I know what works for the way that I play. The Fralin Split Blades are a welcome addition to my “Little Beast” and to my guitar rig. Kudos to Lindy Fralin.
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