Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups
Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups
Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups

Best Humbucker Neck / Single Coil Bridge duo for Tele?

Discussion in 'Just Pickups' started by WholeLottaGlove, Jun 6, 2013.

  1. WholeLottaGlove

    WholeLottaGlove Tele-Meister

    Nov 3, 2010
    Troy, IL
    I'm currently using a pair of GFS pickups (Dream 180 HB neck/Lil Killer 15K bridge) in my Fender MIM Tele. I went with the humbucker pair because I wanted a noise free, versatile duo for a low price.

    I originally liked the pair, but the sound has grown stale to my ears. My biggest complaint is the way the two sound together. I play in the middle position most of the time, as it is my favorite. I don't know how to describe the sound I'm looking for, but there's a certain chime and sparkle that's lacking.

    I like the sound of the Dream 180 neck by itself; the Lil Killer HB is kinda meh. I wanted a jazzy type tone from the neck and a straight ahead hot rock sound from the bridge. I thought by going with a hotter humbucker in the bridge I would achieve it, but I really think the stock MIM ceramic bridge sounded better!! If it wasn't for the hum and noise, I'd put that back in.

    I know this all subjective to one's personal taste, but I'm just looking for ideas. I'm mostly play rock type stuff, but I play a lot of clean. I would prefer noise and hum free, but if there was a way I could wire it to where just the middle postion was quiet that would work great. Thanks in advance!!

  2. waparker4

    waparker4 Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

    Nov 9, 2011
    Philadelphia, PA
    I'd look into the dimarzio area series, the dream 180 might be ok though I found it a bit blah. I liked the Seymour Duncan 59 in a tele neck pos.

  3. andrew

    andrew Tele-Holic

    May 11, 2003
    Katy, TX
    Here's a question that's along this same vein......

    Got a Fred Stuart Lap Wrap on it's way. These are a hotter pickup, like the Mare '0038 so it should be somewhere north of 10k. Do I need to go with a hotter humbucker for the neck because the bridge pup is hotter?

    I know almost nothing about buckers so I'm curious. I had my heart set on an Ron Ellis bucker, but he didn't reply to my email (normal these days from what I understand), so instead I am thinking about the Dimarzio 36th anni PAF.

  4. Scantron08

    Scantron08 Tele-Afflicted

    Jul 14, 2010
    Jackson, MS
    One thing I've never understood about this combo. What value pot do you run? Normally, 'buckers require 500k and SCs 250k. On a guitar with only one tone and one volume knob, what do you do?

  5. WholeLottaGlove

    WholeLottaGlove Tele-Meister

    Nov 3, 2010
    Troy, IL
    Well, my current pair with the GFS's are both humbuckers, so I use the 500K pot. As recommended earlier, the Dimarzio Area T may be a good fit since it can be used with either a 250K or 500K pot.

  6. lupowitz

    lupowitz Tele-Afflicted

    Jan 31, 2007
    I have an EMG 85 in the neck position paired with an EMG RT in the bridge. Both sport alnico magnets, and with EMGs you can forget about the usual pot value dilemma, since their whole range require 25k pots.

    I like this combo a lot.


  7. davguitar

    davguitar TDPRI Member

    Jan 15, 2009
    Louisville, KY
    I may be soon able to answer that with certainty. I'm about to use a Seymour Duncan 59 at the neck and a Lawrence Wilde L-290TL, which will eliminate the single coil hum and not eliminate single coil tone at the bridge position.

    If I didn't already own the Lawrence I'd probably consider that same DiMarzio. I have had great success with their Area series for Strats, but I also like Lawrence pickups. I look to those pickup makers first. Build quality is really top notch with Lawrence and DiMarzio is also very good. Sound quality is most important and I like what both companies are doing with their stacked humbucking single coil size pickups.

  8. WholeLottaGlove

    WholeLottaGlove Tele-Meister

    Nov 3, 2010
    Troy, IL
    Cool! I'm anxious to hear how it works out.

  9. tjalla

    tjalla Friend of Leo's

    I just sold a partscaster out of components I'd been meaning to put together for a while.

    The pickups were a Duncan Antiquity mini humbucker in the neck and a Klein Fatman in the bridge. 500k pots work great for them both. The mini retained all the necessary clarity, and the Fatman really woke up - before that was too middy.

  10. davidguilbault

    davidguilbault Tele-Meister

    Apr 16, 2012
    Hi folks. I have a Seymour Duncan Jazz humbucker in my Tele neck (SH-2N). My Tele is routed for single-coil-sized pup in the bridge. What Seymour Duncan bridge pup would be a good match for the neck Jazz? I mostly strum and like dark and warm. Top recommendations seem to be the ones listed below. What say you all? Thanks. Just joined the forum. Very informatiive. Cheers for now. David.

    Jerry Donahue Tele Lead (APTL-3JD)
    Little '59 Humbucker for Tele (ST59-1B)
    Alnico II Pro for Tele Lead (APTL-1)

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