Seymour Duncan Lari Basilio Pickups – Initial Thoughts

In January 2021, Lari Basilio released her first signature guitar, the Ibanez LB1. The guitar was one of several signature models that introduced the Ibanez AZS model; a futuristic T-style shape that blends vintage style with and ergonomics. The LB1 is unmistakably Lari’s guitar, sporting her signature purple lipstick color for the body and striking gold hardware to match.

Most importantly to us, the LB1 introduced Lari’s new signature pickup set with Seymour Duncan. The pickup set was a unique Humbucker-Tele-Tele, as opposed to the more common Humbucker-Strat-Strat. Before we get into that, let’s properly introduce Lari.

Lari Basilio with her Ibanez LB1 signature guitar model.

Lari Basilio is a highly talented Brazilian guitarist and composer known for her virtuosic playing style and unique blend of jazz, rock, and fusion music. Born on June 23, 1988, in São Paulo, Brazil, Lari began playing guitar at the age of 8 and quickly developed a passion for the instrument.

Growing up, Lari was heavily influenced by her father’s love for music, and her early musical education included classical guitar lessons. However, she soon became interested in other genres, including jazz and rock, and began to explore different styles and techniques.

Since then, Lari has released several critically acclaimed albums, including her debut album, “The Sound of My Room,” in 2015, “Far More,” in 2019, and her latest album, “Your Love” in 2022. Her music has been praised for its technical prowess and melodic sensibility, and she has been featured in numerous guitar magazines and publications. Oh, did we forget to mention she’s also a licensed attorney?

Since 2021, we’ve patiently waited for the details of the Seymour Duncan Lari Basilio set to be released. Two years later we finally have them, and they’re finally for sale! The table below shows the full public details:

 Seymour Duncan Lari Basilio NeckSeymour Duncan Lari Basilio MiddleSeymour Duncan Lari Basilio Bridge
DC Resistance6.33 K6.57 K9.22 K
Magnet TypeAlnico 5 + Alnico 4Alnico 5 + Alnico 2Alnico 5
CoverCoveredOpen CoverCovered
Wire Gauge43 AWG (est)42 AWG (est)42 AWG (est)
Price$109 USD$109 USD$159 USD

At first glance, this seems like a fairly standard Tele neck pickup. For the most part it is. However, there is a unique trick that’s hiding under the cover – mixed magnets. Seymour Duncan has done this already on sets like their Seymour Duncan Five-Two, but we’ve never seen a mix of Alnico 5 and Alnico 4.

Alnico 4 is an interesting magnet and requires its own article, but if we use the guitar community’s consensus, it’s similar to Alnico 5 but slightly weaker. Alnico 5 magnets are under the low strings (E-A-D), while the Alnico 4 magnets are under the high strings (G-B-e). It’s hard to predict what difference this will make, but we expect the high strings to be slightly softer, matching Lari’s playing style. Expect this to be on the brighter side of the tele pickup spectrum.

The most similar pickups to this would be the Lollar Special T Neck and the Radioshop Vintage 64 Tele Neck. While both only use Alnico 5 magnets, their DC resistance is nearly identical. We expect all of these models use 43 AWG wire, given that these are all straight forward, vintage-style tele neck pickups.

Here’s where things become interesting. While this middle pickup is still in a tele form, Seymour Duncan describes it specifically as “Strat®-style voiced in a Tele®-style rhythm-sized footprint.” When pickup companies make this type of claim, they are generally referring to the use of 42 AWG wire, as well as a taller bobbin. Also, many times we find that the cover has been removed or altered in some way. We find that to be the case with this model, using an open-style cover. We’ll address how covers affect tone in a future article, but the short story is that covers affect how loud the pickup’s resonant peak is. Raw nickel has a small effect, Copper-plated nickel a bit more, and brass affects it the most. Tele pickups use brass covers traditionally, which is why they tend to have a very rolled off high end. By removing the cover over the poles, the resonant peak is brought closer to where it would be with a Strat pickup.

This pickup also uses mixed magnets like the neck. This time, we have Alnico 5 on the low strings (E-A-D), but Alnico 2 on the high strings (G-B-e). Alnico 2 is weaker than Alnico 5, which will reduce the output of those strings. Like the neck pickup, we have a focus on the low strings being slightly louder than the high strings. This may cause some interesting effects when combining the neck and middle pickup together. We can confirm this once we’ve tested it ourselves. Personally, I’d love to try this pickup in the neck position.

Several companies have made Tele pickups with a Strat voice. Fender’s Twisted Tele neck pickup is likely the most famous. Compared to the Lari Basilio Middle, the most similar model comes from the Seymour Duncan Custom Shop, the Rhythm for Tele with Strat Tone. Such a creative name. Both pickups have a very similar DC resistance and the same open cover. It’s possible this is what Lari used when planning her set. Another option is the Axesrus Screw Vintage Neck pickup. This has an even closer DC resistance but doesn’t come with an open cover. You could option the nickel cover to get a similar effect. Knowing Axesrus, they likely can install an open cover if that’s what you want.

Lastly, let’s look at Lari’s bridge pickup. Seymour Duncan doesn’t give us much to go on other than that it’s “punchy.” That basically describes every overwound PAF-style humbucker, which this clearly is. We don’t have any information as to the symmetry of the bobbins. Typically, Seymour Duncan will notate an asymmetrical humbucker by using verbiage like “special coil wind,” so we’ll assume these are symmetrical. Overall, expect these to have a hot PAF sound, which essentially means a bit louder and a bit darker.

The most comparable pickup models to these are the Suhr SSV Bridge and the Bare Knuckle Black Dog Bridge. Both are similar in DC resistance, use Alnico 5 magnets, and are excellent examples of high quality overwound PAFs.

Overall, we’re very excited about this set. While the bridge is fairly standard, the combination of it with the unique middle and neck pickup should create very interesting combinations that don’t exist anywhere else in the pickup world. We commend Lari for co-developing a pickup set that is truly new. We shouldn’t have expected anything less given she’s done the same with her music. We look forward to getting a set to provide a full analysis on soon. If you’re interested in purchasing this set, you can get them Seymour Duncan’s website here. By clicking this affiliate link, you will help support Guitar Pickup Database.

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