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 Post subject: Aria Pickups
PostPosted: Sun Jan 19, 2014 10:46 pm 
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The early Ibanzez, Electra's, and Aria's.... did they come from the factory with their own pickups or were Demarzio's installed at the factory? I ask because years and years ago I had an Aria Les Paul made in the early 70's prior to their putting serial numbers on them. It had the most amazing pickups and all I can remember is they were white and they were Dimarzios and I was wondering if that was a factory deal or did someone replace them. Can anyone help me with this? Thanks and please forgive my ignorance. I'm trying to build a guitar from early Japanese parts and need help on this one.


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 Post subject: Re: Aria Pickups
PostPosted: Mon Jan 20, 2014 6:02 am 
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Aria did offer DeMarzio pups from the factory on some models. Usually they were early super distortion pups. I do not recall having heard of Electra doing so. I don't know about Ibanez.


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 Post subject: Re: Aria Pickups
PostPosted: Mon Jan 20, 2014 6:36 am 
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Workingman wrote:
Aria did offer DeMarzio pups from the factory on some models. Usually they were early super distortion pups. I do not recall having heard of Electra doing so. I don't know about Ibanez.

Really? I've always associated Electra and Aria and being pretty much the same company since they came from the same manufacturer as I understand it. Although I've always considered Electra to be vastly superior based entirely on having owned a lot of both. But there has never been another one including numerous upper end guitars I've owned that could touch that Aria. Sounds strange but I remember the sound being so unique and I wanted to find those particular pickups again. I cannot tell you how much I appreciate the information. Thanks!


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 Post subject: Re: Aria Pickups
PostPosted: Mon Jan 20, 2014 8:48 am 
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I have two original electra les paul pickups if your interested


Image

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Last edited by Shackleton on Tue Jan 21, 2014 12:05 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Aria Pickups
PostPosted: Mon Jan 20, 2014 9:46 am 
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Shackleton wrote:
I have two original electra les paul pickups if your interested.

If they're the Dimarzio super distortion I'm very interested... how much?


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 Post subject: Re: Aria Pickups
PostPosted: Mon Jan 20, 2014 5:24 pm 
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Why would they be super d's, i stated they are stock Electra. They came with there own brand of pickups. And DP100s are much hotter in the 13-14 ohm range!


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 Post subject: Re: Aria Pickups
PostPosted: Mon Jan 20, 2014 6:39 pm 
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Shackleton wrote:
Why would they be super d's, i stated they are stock Electra. They came with there own brand of pickups. And DP100s are much hotter in the 13-14 ohm range!

I don't know brother... I guess because I'm having a conversation about stock pickups that were put in Aria's at the factory which I suppose could be called Aria pickups but they aren't. I'm not 15 years old so I'd appreciate it if you'd alter that tone a little bit if you're going to address me


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 Post subject: Re: Aria Pickups
PostPosted: Mon Jan 20, 2014 11:00 pm 
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Then go on ebay and buy some Dimarzio's


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 Post subject: Re: Aria Pickups
PostPosted: Tue Jan 21, 2014 8:16 am 
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Location: New Jersey
sheesh.....

I'm not 100% sure but I think some of the very earliest SLM Electra's may have had DiMarzios in them. If anyone has contact with Tom Presley I bet he could clear that up pretty quick.


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 Post subject: Re: Aria Pickups
PostPosted: Tue Jan 21, 2014 8:51 am 
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They may look like Dimarzio but there not. MMK I think were the brand there's been alot of discussion on the board if you do a search.


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 Post subject: Re: Aria Pickups
PostPosted: Tue Jan 21, 2014 10:26 pm 
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Location: Southern Indiana
ADMIN RESPONSE! :x
Attitudes like this have no place on this board. People should have their questions treated with respect and should not be talked down to - this will be a friendly board that welcomes questions. That is NOT WHAT THIS BOARD is about. Please don't SPAM or derail posts. Be friendly. Park the attitudes a few blocks away next time.
:down: :down: :down: :down:

Back to your question: I don't have the dimarzio answer for you on the Arias. I know personally of several guitars that offered the "Dimarzio Powered" pickups in their guitars. They were either black or cream pickups with non-adjustable pole pieces and had a lower output than Super Distortions. They were pretty good pickup and closer to a PAF in output (maybe slightly more), but likely a bit clearer sounding. I have seen them in my buddies Lotus LP copy from that time (late 70s or around 1980). I know early Corts may have too. Arias probably did too. I see them (the "dimarzio powered" pickups) on ebay every now and then if you look for them - the non-adjustable poles and the lack of model markings are a dead giveaway on these models. Sometimes they go for cheap too. Pretty darned good pickups really.

I know Westbury's of that era were made by Matsumoku (I think so), and they came with full blown dimarzio SDs and PAFs in some models. I have owned a number of them. I remember Andy Timmons playing one in College. I don't know of Electra doing this, but that isn't to say they didn't - just that I haven't ran into this or know that this has happened. You find Electras with old dimarzios in them all the time, but everybody was ripping their pickups out and putting in dimarzios back then. It was dimarzio and might mite (when that was a US-made brand) and very few others - before duncan was widely distributed.

I am not convinced those particular pickups - the ones used in the Kasuga or Terada-made Electras are MMKs. MMKs came later with the Phoenix and pointy models made by Matusmoku for sure, and were stamped with MMK and two digit numbers like 45 or 53 - they were used by the Westone models too that the electras evolved into. The early pickups *may* be maxon or some other early Japanese company. The pickups in the MPC guitars had different markings, and resembled some of those made by Maxon for other Japanese manufactures such as Ibanez. I have also seen Univox with similar pickups as well. The dual open black coil pickups used in MPCs and some other NON-Matsumoku Electra models have less windings/lower output than MMK 45s and they are not spaced for neck and bridge like MMK 45s are spaced. They may also not be MMK-made pickups. Or it could be that they are earlier versions with different tooling and markings, and that the MMK 45s are just newer evolved designs. But I am not convinced of this at this time. If you look closely there are many differences/and really few similarities. The older pickups were not put together as well as the MMKs were, and the coils would come loose if you removed the covers (bobbins were not attached).

I would believe what Tom Presley would say on the subject because he was there and involved in the decision-making at that time.

BTW, another buddy owned an early aria bolt neck LP copy. It was VERY MUCH like the electra bolt-neck super rock era guitars. I helped him put dimarzios in it, and MAN, that guitar ROCKED. I was just a kid, but it sounded FANTASTIC. It had the same arched top plywood over mahogany core with the airgap - just like the Electras and the Univoxes had at that time. But that one didn't come with them in it, he ordered them and I put them in. It was in the 70s and i was just a kid, and it was a BIG DEAL. Probably the first thing I ever soldered, except maybe the battery snap connector back on an EH FX pedal I had back then. He later moved on to a Strat, and later to a Kramer guitar. Years later he had it in parts and didn't play it any longer, and I tried to buy it from him. He would not sell it. Now it is long gone, but it was astonishingly good sounding. I think those guitars were a bit more lively because they had a bit of a 335 vibe to them, and it reduced the weight too.

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 Post subject: Re: Aria Pickups
PostPosted: Wed Jan 22, 2014 5:29 am 
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If you go to the Matsumoku page there is an extensive discussion of MMK pups here: http://www.matsumoku.org/ggboard/viewto ... =26&t=3762

I think Thorny is right that prior to the MMK's Matt built guitars sourced their pups from Maxon or other such suppliers. A clue to that is sometimes you find the same pups in builds by other Japanese factories. It is even possible that Maxon or some other company made the MMK pups to Matt's specs.

As for Aria having stock DeMarzio pups, here is a spec sheet that shows them being available: http://www.matsumoku.org/models/ariapro ... lc/lc.html


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 Post subject: Re: Aria Pickups
PostPosted: Wed Jan 22, 2014 6:47 am 
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Good to know that Aria offered dimarzios too - didn't know that for sure.

There is a "dimarzio powered" pickup that I was talking about offered on several other brands on ebay right now - it is the black version (but I have seen double cream too). I am not affiliated or trying to sell this, in fact, the price is WAY TOO OPTIMISTIC. But this IS the pickup I was referring to and you find them on ebay. They should not cost more than $30 in my opinion. They were a cheaper version of dimarzio with non-adjustable poles and the output was slightly hotter than vintage. They were GOOD sounding pickups though. Also notice the square "feet" that the pickup mounting screws go into, another giveaway that it is an early late 70s model. They did not have wiring options that I know of (all two conductor). Here is the link if you want to see what I am talking about. I pulled the picture to post what one looks like.

Image

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 Post subject: Re: Aria Pickups
PostPosted: Fri Jan 24, 2014 5:45 am 
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If you're looking for those great old Dimarzios, a cheap way to find them is in old Hondo II Les Paul copies. They came stock in those old bolt neck lp's. Not in all of them, but in a lot of them. There was just one in my local area for only $75! I didn't get it though, I regret it. But anyhow, patience is the key in finding them.

Or just scour Ebay. Or on the Dimarzio forums, someone's bound to have one on there.

And remember that pickups sound different in different guitars! Crazy as this sounds, it's true. Your guitar's pots, caps and just general construction will influence the sound.

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 Post subject: Re: Aria Pickups
PostPosted: Fri Jan 24, 2014 6:30 am 
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That is an excellent suggestion. Also, following your lead I just saw a lotus electric that has a pair of them too on ebay (the brand I remember my friend having on his). I believe I used them in my old Japanese bolt neck epi wilshire copy from back then, my friend probably got a super distortion and PAF, and I got those from him. I don't recall the specifics. But this brings back a lot of memories.

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