20 Guitars With Sustainiac Pickup – And My Favorites

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Who doesn’t like a guitar with a good sustain? Everyone does. But what if you could achieve endless sustain…

If you haven’t been living under a rock, you have probably heard about Sustainiac pickups, which basically give you endless sustain (long as the battery lasts). All this is…pretty cool. Players from Satriani to Synyster Gates have been opting into using Sustainiacs.

This is why I was happy to put together this article that gathers the top-notch guitars with Sustainiac pickups together. I also reveal my 3 favorites…and if you have any questions, check the FAQ section of this article or leave a comment. And don’t worry, we’ll look at how Sustainiac pickups work too.

Let’s get started!

photo reveals owner of guitaristnextdoor.com

Author: Teemu Suomala

I first grabbed the guitar in 2009. I started this website in January 2020 because I couldn’t do window installation anymore due to my health problems. I also noticed that most guitar websites don’t do a really good job, so I decided to just go for it! I got lucky and managed to get awesome people to help me with my website. I also got lucky because I have you visiting my website right now. Thank you. I do all this for you guys. If you have any recommendations, tips, or feedback, just leave a comment, I would love to chat with you. I have been fortunate to produce content for several large guitar websites, such as Songsterr, Musicnotes, GuitarGuitar, and Ultimate Guitar. I spend my spare time exercising and hanging out with my wife and crazy dog(I guess that went the right way…).

20 Guitars With Sustainiac Pickup – Plus 1 With Jackson Sustainer

Schecter Damien Platinum-6 FR S is hands-down one of the best “value” guitars with a Sustainiac pickup. It has a Thin C neck with 24 XJ frets. This combo makes playing extremely comfortable and effortless. It’s also equipped with mean-sounding Active EMG 81 which fits modern metal really well. Pair this with a Sustainiac and you got a really amazing bang-for-the-buck guitar on your hands.

Price Range Icon Meanings:

$= $850-999

$$= $1000-1299

$$$= $1300-1599

$$$$= $1600-1999

$$$$$= $2000

*Consider all links in this post to be affiliate links. If you purchase, at no additional cost to you, we may earn a small commission. It helps us to keep the lights on, thanks! 🙂

ModelPickupBody StylePrice RangeCheck Current Price (affiliate links)
Schecter Sun Valley Super Shredder FR-S – Cheapest Guitar With SustainiacSustainiac Pickup
& EMG Retro Active Hot 70 Humbucker
Modern Stratocaster$Sweetwater* – Thomann*
Schecter Sun Valley Super Shredder PT FR-S – Best BudgetSustainiac Pickup
& EMG Retro Active Hot 70 Humbucker
Cort MBM-2H Manson Meta SUS (Matthew Bellamy) – For Muse FansSustainiac & Manson Design humbuckerSingle-cut$Thomann
Schecter Damien Platinum-6 FR SSustainiac Pickup
& EMG 81 Humbucker
Modern Stratocaster$SweetwaterThomann
Schecter BlackJack SLS C-1 FR-SSustainiac Retrofit SLS
& Schecter Brimstone Humbucker
Modern Stratocaster$$Sweetwater
Cort MBM-2H Matthew Bellamy – For Muse FansSustainiac & Manson Design humbuckerSingle-cut$$Thomann
Schecter Hellraiser C-1 FR-S – All-Around Metal MachineSustainiac Pickup
& EMG 81 Humbucker
Modern Stratocaster$$SweetwaterThomann
Schecter Reaper-6 FR-SSustainiac Pickup & Diamond Decimator HumbuckerModern Stratocaster$$SweetwaterThomann
Schecter Banshee GT-6 FR S – Excellent Thrash Metal GuitarSustainiac Pickup
& EMG 81 Humbucker
Modern Stratocaster$$SweetwaterThomann
Schecter C-1 FR-S ApocalypseSustainiac Pickup
& Schecter USA Apocalypse-VI Humbucker
Modern Stratocaster$$$SweetwaterThomann
Schecter E-1 FR S Special Edition – Best Overall Offset Guitar With A SustainiacSustainiac Pickup
& Schecter USA Apocalypse VI Humbucker
Schecter Synyster Gates Custom-SSustainiac Pickup
& Syn Gates USA Signature Humbucker
Synyster Gates$$$SweetwaterThomann
Schecter DJ AshbaSustainiac Pickup
& EMG 81 Humbucker
Modern Stratocaster$$$Guitar CenterThomann
Ibanez Axion Label RG60ALS – Best OverallSustainiac Pickup
& DiMarzio Fusion Edge-7 Humbucker
Modern Stratocaster$$$SweetwaterThomann
Schecter Avenger FR S ApocalypseSustainiac Pickup
& Schecter USA Apocalypse VI Humbucker
Avenger $$$SweetwaterThomann
Schecter C-1 FR-S Silver MountainSustainiac Pickup
& Schecter USA Sonic Seducer Humbucker
Modern Stratocaster$$$SweetwaterThomann
Schecter Banshee Mach-6 FR-SSustainiac Pickup
& Lundgren M6 Humbucker
Modern Stratocaster$$$Sweetwater
Ibanez Joe Satriani Signature JS240PS – Best PremiumSustainiac Driver Only Pickup
& DiMarzio Satchur8 Alnico Humbucker
Modern Stratocaster$$$$SweetwaterThomann
Ibanez Joe Satriani Signature JS2480Sustainiac Driver Only Pickup
& DiMarzio Satchur8 Humbucker
Modern Stratocaster$$$$$SweetwaterThomann
Ibanez Joe Satriani Signature JS1CRSustainiac Driver Only Pickup
& DiMarzio Satchur8 Humbucker
Modern Stratocaster$$$$$SweetwaterThomann
Jackson USA Signature Phil Collen PC1 – Good for Def Leppard Fans – Has A Jackson SustainerJackson PC1 Sustainer Driver
& DiMarzio HS-2 DP116 Single-coil
& DiMarzio DP-152-F Humbucker
Modern Stratocaster$$$$$SweetwaterThomann

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3 Best Guitars With Sustainiac Pickup – My Favorites

Best Budget – Schecter Sun Valley Super Shredder PT FR-S

What I like

  • Thin C neck shape paired with 1.625″ nut width gives a really slim and comfortable feel
  • Fast playing
  • EMG Retro Active Hot 70 Humbucker offers a less compressed tone than EMG 81
  • Offers great bang for the buck
  • Same great quality Sustainiac pickup as on 1000’s of dollars of more expensive guitars

What I don’t like

  • Mainly fits metal (not super versatile)
  • The neck can feel too slim for some players
  • No tone knob

Who is it for?

If you are after an affordable metal-friendly guitar with a Sustainiac and prefer a slim feel of the neck, this Schecter Sun Valley Super Shredder Tele is one of the best options. It offers great metal tones, and while it’s not the most versatile guitar with a Sustainiac pickup, it still offers really high value for the money.

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Best Overall – Ibanez Axion Label RG60ALS

What I like

  • Great quality and smooth-to-use Edge-Zero II Locking Tremolo bridge
  • DiMarzio Fusion Edge-7 Humbucker on the bridge offer surprisingly full clean tones
  • Slim Nitro Wizard neck offers comfortable playability (great shape for small hands)
  • Mainly for metal, but can handle everything
  • Distorted tones are super crunchy, mean, and awesome
  • Has a Master-tone knob

What I don’t like

  • None (Getting a gig bag too would be nice for this price tho)

Who is it for?

If you are after an extremely fast-playing guitar with a relatively affordable price and premium features & hardware, Ibanez Axion Label RG60ALS is a top choice. For this price, it doesn’t have any real cons, its Sustainiac & Dimarzio pickup combo sound mean, but are versatile too. It’s got a smooth & slim Nitro Wizard neck and great hardware (Edge-Zero II Locking Tremolo-bridge for example). Premium-level guitar with a price that many players can still afford.

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Best Premium – Ibanez Joe Satriani Signature JS240PS

What I like

  • Really fast playing
  • Offers excellent clean tones
  • One of the most versatile guitars in this article
  • Can handle metal
  • Has a Master-tone knob
  • Usually comes with a gig bag
  • Edge Double-locking Tremolo-bridge works really smoothly

What I don’t like

  • Shape and color might not be everyone’s favorite

Who is it for?

If you are after an extremely versatile and smooth-playing instrument with a Sustainaic pickup, Ibanez Joe Satriani Signature JS240PS is an awesome choice. It costs well under $2k, it can truly handle everything, and it has a premium feel and hardware on it. It’s an amazing all-around guitar and a dream to play.

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What Is A Sustainiac Pickup?

Sustainiac generates an electromagnetic field that keeps strings vibrating long as the battery lasts after you have strummed a string(s) and turned Sustainiac on. This enables players to achieve basically endless sustain for the note (long as the battery lasts).

What Does A Sustainiac Pickup Do?

Sustainaic generates an electromagnetic field that keeps strings vibrating long as the battery lasts after you have strummed the strings. This electromagnetic field doesn’t pick up the vibration and transfer it to an electric signal when the sustainiac is turned on, it only keeps the string(s) vibrating.

This great video from DylanTalksTone (I recommend you SUB to his channel) explains more about Sustainiac pickups:

YouTube video

Is Sustainiac Pickup Worth it?

If having improved and basically endless sustain is something you want to achieve, Sustainiac is most likely worth it. And gladly you don’t need to shell out $2k or even $1k for a guitar with a Sustainiac pickup.

Sustaniac allows you to pull off awesome dive bombs without losing the note in the middle of the bomb(this happens easily with cheaper guitars or if the guitar has a poor setup). It also allows you to mix overtones with the notes.

Here’s a great demo of my Best Premium pick Ibanez Joe Satriani Signature JS240PS. Juca does an amazing job demoing the guitar and the Sustainiac pickup (I recommend you SUB to his channel):

YouTube video

How Much Does A Sustainiac Pickup Cost?

I discovered that currently there are no Sustainaic pickups sold separately on the mass market. I found a couple of closed Reverb listings where someone had sold a Sustaniac pickup set for around $200.

Guitars with Sustaniac pickup is usually $100-200 more expensive than the one without. Schecter Sun Valley Super Shredder is one such example.

How Much Does it Cost to Install Sustainiac?

The latest benchmark I found was from Maniac Music Inc’s(creator of Sustainiac pickups) website. They state that they charge $125-175 for the installation.

When Was The Sustainiac Invented?

This 2017 Music Trade Magazine reveals that the first Sustainiac product for the electric guitar was built in 1986.

Maniac Music Inc confirmed this information.

Does Sustainiac Work Without Battery?

No. Sustaniaic pickup requires 9V battery that enables Sustaniac to generate a strong enough magnetic field that can make strings vibrate.

Conclusion on Guitars With Sustainiac Pickup

It’s always awesome when a piece of gear brings something really useful to the table. And increased sustain is definitely something really useful. We had awesome guitars in this article and it was a ton of fun to learn more about Sustainiac pickups.

I hope this article helped you out, and maybe you even decided to get one of the guitars featured. If you have any questions, leave a comment, I and the GND team are here for you.

Now go, my son, and Rock!

This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. Peter Lawson

    Are any of these guitars with built in sustainers for the lefthanded player?

    1. Teemu Suomala

      Hi Pete!
      Sorry, I can’t remember from the top of my head…I’m pretty sure that there’s at least some lefty sustainer guitar. But you can pretty easily find out more with Google and Music store searches. Thanks for commenting!

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