Paradox Custom


The Lucem Paradox blends distinct retro styling and classic off-set design was originally offered as a limited-run ‘Old Nick’ model conceived for, and with, revered ex-Verve guitarist Nick McCabe.


The Paradox Custom closely follows Nick's original spec and is built to the highest specifications using the best parts, materials and construction techniques.


In this latest offering updated for 2021; it is available with various custom options, and an innovative 5 pot controls scheme.


21 different settings are accessible from the controls plate via push/pull pots including various combinations of coil splits, ‘series/parallel’ and ‘out of phase’. A fifth knob; a master volume control gives the player opportunity to create swells without effecting the balance set at the neck/bridge volume and tone controls - a feature introduced by McCabe for his trademark “pinkie rolls”. Pulling the master volume pot will also engage a treble bleed circuit.


Construction wise it is based around a one-piece quarter sawn mahogany through-neck format, this aids in transferring vibration evenly, across the whole frequency range, through the entire instrument. This helps increase sustain and eliminate dead spots. This also facilitates a virtually heel-less neck joint for unparalleled access to the upper registers.


In another interesting connection the Lucem logo; which will features on the new model has been designed by Brian Cannon from Microdot Creative; who was responsible for many iconic British album sleeve designs of the 1990’s including The Verve, Oasis, Super Furry Animals, Suede, Cast, Ash and many more.


Hand made in the English Lake District these instruments combine superior craftsmanship with innovative, left-field design, modern, high-end features and performance tied to a classic aesthetic.


Paradox Custom Specifications:


Body: Tulipwood

Neck: Mahogany Through-neck

Fretboard: Indian Rosewood - unbound

Headstock overlay: Ebano

Inlays: Pearl Block inlays and side dots

Finish: High gloss (colour options)

Scratch Plate: 4-ply Brown Imitation Tortoiseshell (options)

Scale Length: 25.5”

Fretboard Radius: Custom Compound

Nut Width: 42mm

Frets: 24

Bridge: Schaller roller bridge

Temolo: Bigsby B5

Pickups: Lucem Storm Rider Splittable 12-pole Alnico 5 (bridge), Alnico 3 (neck) 

Switch:3-way toggle

Tuners: Schaller DaVinci

Case: Swanflight full flight case

Controls scheme:  5 x 500k CTS pots, 1x volume, 1 x tone for each pickup, plus and independent master volume control. This scheme provides 21 possible combinations;

All controls in down position - normal LP type controls config.

Neck volume up - neck humbucker coil split.

Bridge volume up - bridge humbucker coil split.

Neck tone up - neck and bridge in series.

Bridge tone up - neck and bridge out of phase.

Master volume up – engages treble bleed circuit.


These instruments are built to order with an approximate wait time of 20 weeks. There are many custom options and upgrades available which can be discussed. A non-refundable pre-build deposit is required.


Price: POA


"Neither a slavish imitation of classic design nor a hyper modernist creation pandering to the metal or fusion crowd, Graham has created something beautiful, which feels and plays every bit the top flight boutique instrument and crystallises all that is great about classic guitar design"


- Nick McCabe, The Verve and Black Submarine


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© Tonelabs Limited - Lucem® is a UK registered trademark of Tonelabs Limited. Lucem® Custom Instruments and Lucem® Guitars are both trading names of Tonelabs Limited. Est. 2007. UK Company No. 6364284 VAT Reg. 980 0037 43