Our next stop on the Jimmy Page tone quest is in North Carolina, where the skilled winders at Mojotone will make you an excellent custom pickup. Since Mojotone already has the ‘59 Clone in their lineup, I thought I’d call their pickup guru David Shepherd to discuss the options. Before going further, check out the ’59 Clone as well. It is crafted with butyrate bobbins, vintage spec wire, maple spacers, and vintage spec screws/slugs…and it’s made right here in the USA.
Being a Page enthusiast, David suggested going with a custom wind that would be wound to best represent the earlier Page Les Paul tone that we know from the seminal classics. The project was given to Mojotone pickup winder Nick Eldred. I’ve had the opportunity to meet and talk with Nick. He’s a smart dude and a good guy….as would be anyone that can cope with dealing with me for more than a minute. lol! I’d just installed this set, so talking about it brought a look of well-deserved pride to Nick’s face. As I generally try to suggest, definitely seize an opportunity to be able to talk to the person winding you pickups. It’s always a win-win.
The custom wound JP set installed like a champ. I asked for the 4-con wiring to be able to cop a few of the JP combinations. And off we went. Both positions are extremely responsive to touch and picking style. This set has a balanced tonal response and is very open sounding so that every note of a complex chord has equal character….and there is a nice bloom around the notes that makes you want to dig deep for the more interesting chords to probe the reaches of the pickup’s range.
On a clean amp setting, the neck responds well to series, split and parallel combinations. Each of those wiring options revealed a fresh character to the pickup, more so that I generally experience. The middle position is a very nice tone that reveals how well-matched the set is….a bit of warmth from the neck and a bit of sass from the bridge. The bridge can be a little bossy on a clean setting, a little more prone to breakup if you tap it on the shoulder a bit.
For a dirty amp setting, both pickups respond well to high gain. The 59 Clone model is not potted, so I’m assuming that would apply to this set as well, since I did get a wee bit of microphonic action happening here and there….but still, I was definitely running high gain. haha! The bridge position maintained great clarity and articulation, while the neck was highlighted by a lush warm comfort area for richly-voiced lead work. This set is more tone than gain, so the really hard rocking types might have to tweak that knob on the amp.
series – 8.14k
split – 4.20k
split – 3.94k
parallel – 2.04k
Un-oriented Alnico 5
series – 7.71k
split – 4.02k
split – 3.69k
parallel – 1.93k
Darth Phineas is a long time music industry insider who provides his readers with unbiased reviews on musical instrument and guitar gear. You can read more of his reviews and check out industry news on his Facebook community Darth Phineas