Best Pickups for a PRS SE McCarty 594 Upgrade
Seymour Duncan Pearly Gates
The Pearly Gates have a bit more of a vintage vibe than I would prefer, but I think they're going to be a more cost-effective and satisfying balance for most players looking to improve their SE McCarty's sound. It can certainly handle a broad spectrum of high and low gain styles, while also producing some really beautiful and satisfying lead tones.
BEST FOR: Versatile playing styles, distortion, classic rock, blues, and some hard rock if needed, fans of warm and smooth tones with a somewhat hotter output.
- Lots of different cover options, and even a zebra version, give you some style variations to pick from.
- Great for low to mid-gain tone and cleans. Small amounts of breakup work well too.
- Warm, vintage-learning tone can still handle heavy and modern rock.
- Maybe not an ideal fit of you want more of a modern rock style. It can do it, but if that's your main focus, you might want to look at some other options below (something active).
Why I like the Seymour Duncan Pearly Gates
To an extent, the Pearly Gates are simply a go-to pickup set that I like to recommend for a lot of different scenarios. They're a good price, versatile, and a consistently well-liked and well-rated pairing. But I also like the versatility that the PRS SE McCarty is known for. Those guitars are made to handle a lot of different styles - metal, blues, and everything in between. So a pickup upgrade should be in that same mold.
If you want to go with active humbuckers for more of a percussive metal tone, the Fishman Fluence Modern pair would be my next stop. Just note that you'll need to make room for a battery underneath the back panel with the rest of the electronics, since it's an active pickup set.
Additional Pickups and SE McCarty Upgrades to Consider
Make sure you have the right size for the Grover tuners, though they'll have far less of an impact than the humbuckers. We'd also recommend throwing a set of Elixir strings on your SE McCarty.
Selection and Recommendation Methodology
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Compare More Pickups
If you want to compare the Seymour Duncan Pearly Gates to other humbuckers, you can search for them here and add them to the comparison bar at the bottom of this page.
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