DiMarzio DP228 Crunch Lab
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DiMarzio DP228 Crunch Lab

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DP228 Crunch Lab, Humbucker guitar pickup from DiMarzio in the High Power series.


7 user reviews
Prices starting at $85 Average price: $85

DiMarzio DP228 Crunch Lab tech. sheet

  • Manufacturer: DiMarzio
  • Model: DP228 Crunch Lab
  • Series: High Power
  • Category: Humbucker guitar pickups
  • Added in our database on: 12/18/2013

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DiMarzio DP228 Crunch Lab user reviews

Average Score:4.6( 4.6/5 based on 7 reviews )
 4 reviews57 %
 3 reviews43 %
RiceEatin2010GT10/21/2012

RiceEatin2010GT's review"Looks similar to the D-Sonic but sounds different"

DiMarzio DP228 Crunch Lab
The DiMarzio D-Sonic was a fairly successful pickup when it first came out, but it has a lot of issues that came with it. For one, it was quite noisy. It also has some annoying treble in the high end. The Crunch Lab seems like them trying to fix the problems that the original D-Sonic had. It uses the same half blade/half adjustable pole piece design that the Crunch Lab uses, but DiMarzio doesn’t really recommend you swap this around like before. You can, however, adjust its orientation. I found that it sounds really good with the bar facing the neck, but you might feel differently. It’s a high output pickup, but it’s dynamic and fairly tight sounding. They fixed the treble issue that I was having with the original D-Sonic. That pickup had an annoying high end spike that I just could never dial out. This pickup doesn’t seem to have it. In fact, it sounds a bit fatter overall. The midrange seems very even, so this pickup should actually work in just about any wood you throw it in. I’ve tried it in basswood and alder, but I haven’t had the chance to try it in anything else. In both cases, it sounded really good. I had this wired up to a three way switch to split the inner coils automatically, similar to how Petrucci does it. This is one of the pickups he uses, after all. It had a great split sound, and I really recommend trying that. It’s clear under high gain and very dynamic, which is something that is important these days. Today’s amplifiers have so much gain that it’s easy to choose the wrong pickup and have a complete mess on your hands. This should work for those running modern equipment, and I recommend you try it out.
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tjon90105/18/2011

tjon901's review"A Dimarzio for modern metal tones"

DiMarzio DP228 Crunch Lab
The Dimarzio Crunchlab is an updated version of the D-Sonic pickup. John Petrucci of Dream Theater got together with Dimarzio to change some things he disliked about the D-Sonic pickup which he had been using. The Crunchlab is a bridge position pickup that features a unique asymmetrical design. One end of the pickup has normal construction with pole piece magnets the other end has a bar or rail magnet like you would find an a Dimarzio X2N. The rated output is 11k with it voiced more progressively towards the low end. The pickup is a bit noisy because of its high output. It may pick up some radio signals or interference from nearby electronics. Because this pickup has an asymmetrical construction the tone you get will greatly depend on how you have the pickup orientated in your guitar. Petrucci designed the pickup to be orientated with the bar magnet towards the neck. This gives more low end response. Since Petrucci likes to use basswood guitars this pickup is geared for more low end response to balance out the brightness of that wood. In heavier wood guitars like mahogany this pickup may produce a sound that is too bassy or muddy. The pickup will produce tight low end and comfortable high end in guitars with a suitable wood. This pickup could make an all maple guitar sound dark. The pickup sounds just like its name, it is very crunchy. The lead tones the Crunchlab produces are also good. Because the pickup has a lot of the high end dialed out you can get a very smooth and modern sounding lead tone out of it, or as smooth a lead tone as you can get with a bridge pickup. This pickup is geared towards high gain playing through modern metal amps such as Mesa Boogie Rectifiers or ENGL amps. I would recommend this pickup to anyone looking for a smooth modern metal or progressive sounding bridge pickup.
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King Loudness05/01/2011

King Loudness's review"A cool pickup for prog/shred."

DiMarzio DP228 Crunch Lab
I purchased a 2010 Ernie Ball Music Man John Petrucci JP6 that was loaded with the new JP pickups, being the Liquifire in the neck position and the Crunch Lab in the bridge position. I'd previously had a 2007 model JP6 that was loaded with the D Sonic in the bridge position, and I can safely say I do prefer the Crunch Lab in that particular guitar.

When I was using these guitars, I was playing progressive/neoclassical shred type stuff primarily and was using either a Splawn Quick Rod or a Peavey Vypyr Tube 60 combo. Compared to the D Sonic that I had before, the Crunch Lab was fuller and punchier sounding, with a bit more output and a bit more of an aggressive edge to it, whereas I found the D-Sonic to be a little bit more classic and a little bit spongier sounding than the CL. The Crunch Lab feels like a hotter pickup overall and definitely suits the heavier progressive/shred type stuff very well.

The clean tones out of this pickup were decent enough for a high output pickup that had no coil splitting capabilities. I didn't often use this pickup for my clean sounds, preferring to use the middle position or the neck. However, when I did use the cleans, I found that they were nice and defined, with a very apparent low end, a slightly boosted set of midrange frequencies and a high end that sat very well in the mix and had a nice chime, but wasn't overly harsh.

The drive tones were the high point of the pickup for sure. For the Dream Theater esque progessive stuff I was playing at time I couldn't have asked for something better. It's a great pickup when hit with a nice dosage of gain. I liked it particularly for complex rhythmic passages as well as faster alternate picked things as it was very articulate and had a much tighter feel than the D-Sonic that it replaced.

All in all I felt that this was a killer pickup for the EBMM JP6 guitar and progressive tones in general. It's a very tight and articulate pickup that takes well to distorted textures and passages with lots of notes. Definitely worth a look if you are after a good high output pickup for prog/shred type stuff.
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Hatsubai03/27/2011

Hatsubai's review"Adjusted D-Sonic"

DiMarzio DP228 Crunch Lab
The DiMarzio Crunch Lab is a new signature pickup that John Petrucci helped create. It’s basically an evolution of the D-Sonic that he started using in the bridge position. This pickup features adjustable pole pieces on one coil, a huge blade like the X2N on the other, four conductor wiring and a ceramic magnet.

I wasn’t a huge fan of the D-Sonic. It was picky on what wood it liked, and it was noisy. DiMarzio solved half of the issues I had with this pickup. First off, this pickup is hotter, yet it sounds more open. I really enjoyed that. It’s clear, more complex than the original D-Sonic and works in just about any tuning. The original one got different sounds depending on how you ran it, and this one is similar. Despite that, it seems that John Petrucci likes running it with the bar towards the neck for every tuning, for whatever reason. I find that it sounds best that way, but some people prefer it with the bar towards the bridge. You just have to experiment and see which orientation you like it in. Split tones sound nicer than the last one; I haven’t tested this out in parallel.

Now, the biggest problem with this pickup is that it’s still noisy. It’s not quite as noisy as the last one, but it still seems to pickup some RF. I have a noise gate running most of the time, so it’s not a huge problem for me, but just keep that in mind.

If you’re looking for a new pickup to try, I recommend testing this pickup out. It’s hot, but it’s not trying to slam your amp. It’s more open than most high output pickup, and even some of the more boutique guitar builders are starting to offer this as a standard pickup.
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DiMarzio DP228 Crunch Lab videos

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