Manlius Vintage 62

DC resistance:
  • Bridge: 6.3k (advertised), 6.25k (measured)
  • Middle: 6.2k (advertised), 6.11k (measured)
  • Neck: 6.1k (advertised), 6.15k (measured)
  • To hear each pickup position alongside the other reviewed models, see “Five Pickups, Side by Side.”

    Vintage 62 is a traditional-sounding set boasting attractive, articulate tones. The bridge pickup has the expected spank, but with relatively even treble response and no sore-thumb spikes. The neck pickup’s voice is slightly on the dark side, but in a good way—there’s enough snap to maintain strong note attack, and it provides an especially dramatic contrast to the bridge tone. There’s lovely, acoustic-like openness in position 2 and lush warmth in position 4. Distorted sounds strike a fine balance between fat and snappy. It was a blast playing them through a vintage Fuzz Face.

    The Vintage 62 is the only set here with a reverse-wound, reverse-polarity (RW/RP) middle pickup. This wasn’t a feature on vintage Strats, but many modern players favor the arrangement because it provides humbucker-style noise cancelling in the combined-pickup settings. That’s a nice feature—if you play a venue with unusually awful wiring, you can survive by favoring positions 2 and 4. Some say a RW/RP middle pickup provides more “quack,” though I don’t perceive it here. Most pickup companies offer both standard and RW/RP middle pickups. (We probably should have requested non-RW/RP pickups for consistency’s sake, but—um—I forgot.)

    This is the least expensive set here. It’s a steal at $180.

    Ratings

    Pros:
    Excellent tonal range. Badass overdriven sounds. Great price.

    Cons:
    None.

    Street:
    $180

    Manlius Vintage 62 Set
    manliusguitar.com

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