Guitar Pickup Review

DiMarzio Super Distor’Tron

The Super Distor’Tron is a great addition to you Gretsch. And your Schecter. Or your Harley Benton. And just any guitar with Filter’Tron pickups. Or just about any guitar with humbucker pickups. It’s the 50th anniversary of DiMarzio’s flagship Super Distortion humbucker. What better way to put the cherry on top than to put a Super D in a Filter’Tron format?

And that’s what you have here. The tone that launched countless careers, and even more weekend rock stars. All packed up nicely into a classic retro-looking chassis, ready to turn your Electromatic into a rock and roll monster. Or maybe you want to flip the script on your shred stick with an old school appearance that can still melt the paint off the wall.

Super DistorTron Gold w Cream
Super DistorTron Gold w Cream

For this application, I am using the handy dandy humbucker-size mounting hardware. Fret not (ha! a pun!), as this comes with the each pickup. If you can install any regular pickup, you can install the mounting hardware. And with the quick-connect option, swapping them around is super easy!

As such, this set is going into a two-hum guitar. The same as the one for the New’Tron and the PAF’Tron articles. For giggles, I’m leaving the PAF’Tron in the neck position. The harness has Bourns 500k pots, a Pure-Tone 1/4″ jack, and a Switchcraft 3-way toggle. Strings are 09-42 with an E standard tuning.

Super DistorTron Nickel w Black
Super DistorTron Nickel w Black

If you already know the Super D, you are going to be familiar with the Super Distor’Tron. The crunch and the clarity. Power and precision. Transparency and tone. It has the tight character and the big attitude that generations of players expect. Healthy low and mids with a strong presence in the high end.

The Super Distor’Tron is using a switch to go from series to split to parallel. Going to split more, it’s like a powerful single coil. Not too much, but definitely enough to be in command. One nice reader sent a message specifically asking about parallel mode. And if a Super D in a Filter’Tron housing sounds like a Filter’Tron. Oh, the stuff of dreams. I think that’s a fair question, amd much as I think it would be cool if that’s how it works out. Alas, it sounds like a Super D in parallel mode. And that’s cool, as we know that’s how Paul Gilbert liked his Super D pickups wired in the 80s.

Super DistorTron Gold w Black
Super DistorTron Gold w Black

DP297 Super Distor’Tron
Series – 14.696 K
Inductance – 7.455 H
Split – 7.48 K
Split – 7.246 K
Parallel – 3.68 K
Magnet – Ceramic
Output – 410 mV

DiMarzio Super DistorTron Tone Guide
DiMarzio Super DistorTron Tone Guide

On the techno-nerd side of things, look at the 7.455 H inductance. That is marginally higher than Super D. Not a lot, but a little. My thinking is, and until someone from DiMarzio tells me otherwise, is the tweaked inductance is to offset the slightly closer rows of pole pieces.


Scope out this most excellent demo by Cameron Cooper:

The BRAND NEW DiMarzio Super Distor’Tron

The Super Distor’Tion is going to be good for hard rock, shred, metal, grunge, progressive rock and metal, garage, thrash, classic rock, and punk. It is available in F-spacing only and with gold or nickel covers with either black or cream inserts. The mounting options are either traditional or you can use the included mounting hardware for regular humbucker mounting.

For reference, this DiMarzio Super Distor’Tron pickup set evaluation was conducted with the following: Fractal Axe-Fx II XL+ featuring Celestion Impluse Responses and Fractal MFC-101 MIDI Foot Controller. ADA MP-1 Tube Pre-Amp loaded with Tube Amp Doctor ECC83 Premium Selected tubes, using the ADA MC-1 MIDI Controller. Fryette LX II Stereo Tube Power Amplifier with Sovtek and Ruby tubes. Physical cabs use are Marshall 1960BMojotone British, and Peavey 6505 cabs loaded with Celestion Classic Series Vintage 30s and Classic Series G12M Greenbacks.

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