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Delta Tone system on American Series Teles

Discussion in 'Telecaster Discussion Forum' started by SimonF, Sep 9, 2004.

  1. SimonF

    SimonF TDPRI Member

    Jan 2, 2004
    Hampshire, UK
    How do you guys like the Delta Tone system on the American Series Teles?

    I'm looking for a Tele and I'm attracted to the American Series by the medium jumbo frets, fingerboard radius and rolled edges. Not sure whether I want the Delta Tone though.

    Any opinions?


  2. Russinator

    Russinator Tele-Holic

    Mar 2, 2003
    To quote the Fender Support FAQ: "The Delta-Tone system is a circuit consisting of a new higher output bridge pickup in conjunction with a new "no-load" tone pot. The new pot has a detent at the 10 position, which bypasses completely any filtration through capacitors."

    This gives the ability to essentially disconnect the tone pot for those that might want the feature but still have the ability to rotate the pot off the detent and roll off the tone normally.

  3. Jakedog

    Jakedog Doctor of Teleocity

    Mar 26, 2003
    The North Coast
    Yeah, what he said. I just got an Am. Series, and I LOVE the stock electronics. It's actually the only guitar I've ever owned that I left stock. If you want "normal" tele sound, just click the tone pot barely out of the detent, as it tends to ba a little bright and brittle wide open. That being said, I play roots rock style stuff most of the time, and I've found the "no load" position (Wide open tone pot) very ballsy and smooth if I roll the high end off on the amp a little bit.

    One more thing, when I tried the guitar out, I wasn't too crazy about the electronics, sounded kind of thin and wimpy. But when I took it home and slapped a set of 11's on it, it really jumped up and begged for buttermilk. I guess the 9's it came with just weren't giving the pick-ups enough to work with.


  4. SimonF

    SimonF TDPRI Member

    Jan 2, 2004
    Hampshire, UK
    Thanks Russinator. Yes, I understand what it is and how a no-load tone control works. I'm curious as to how people get on with this system in practice, and how they like it in a Tele. On the face of it you'd think a Tele would be the LAST guitar that would need a no-load tone control - they're bright enough as it is. It's been suggested to me that the hotter bridge pickup will be fatter and darker (for added versatility), with the no-load tone control allowing you to make it brighter for a more traditional Tele sound when you want it, and also adding some extra sparkle to the neck position.

    I really need to get out there and try a few, but I'm interested in hearing any opinions.

  5. spyder

    spyder RIP

    Mar 21, 2003
    chillicothe, ohio
    Ho...winding for winding, the Fender Delta Tone bridge pickup might be the best sounding model in the entire Fender arsenal....pegged, it has a terrific upper mid-range bark... very similar to the SD ALN2-PRO but with slightly more engaging telecaster tone to say the least...when the Cyber-Twin 1st hit I demoed the amp at the store I teach at for the local Fender rep....he insisted I use his demo telecaster...I forget the model but remember it was factory loaded with the Delta tone system....the guitar was crap, the amp Ok I guess....the pickups were a definite hit...later, spyder

  6. skepticult

    skepticult Tele-Meister

    Nov 2, 2003
    Houston, TX
    I think the tele I have has slightly different pickups than the normal American Series, but it has the Deltatone pot. It adds what's missing to the neck pickup wide open. Fills the sound out a lot.

  7. mr natural

    mr natural Friend of Leo's


    I like it. I leave the tone control slightly rolled off so it sounds like a normal tele sound. When I want that extra push like for a rock lead I crank it wide open. Sounds great on the neck pickup, real ballsy. I got an American Series, because, while I like the traditional tele sound, I play more rock than country, and I wanted something that can do that type of sound. Also, the guitar itself is built like a tank. No, it doesn't sound like a classic tele, but it sounds more tele like than any non-tele guitar out there. With distortion, it positively screams. I just fixed my wah pedal yesterday, and was amazed at the fat harmonics these pups crank out at high volume. With the wah, rotovibe, and a little delay, it was real Hendrixy.
    -Mr N.

  8. Kelsey

    Kelsey Tele-Holic

    Aug 5, 2003
    Memphis, TN
    If you asked this question at the SD forum, then I've already responded -- if not, then check over there anyway. I have 4 American Series Teles, and while I have changed the pickups in most of them, the stock pickups are certainly serviceable at least. The Deltatone control is a win-win situation, so the electronics have stayed even after the pickups were changed. The Deltatone control lets you recreate 2 positions of the original Esquire wiring (lead pickup with tone control and lead pickup bypassing the tone control), so it serves a traditional purpose for the bridge pickup. However, it really shines for the darker Tele neck pickup, which is the better of the two stock pickups in these guitars anyway.

  9. SimonF

    SimonF TDPRI Member

    Jan 2, 2004
    Hampshire, UK
    Thanks for your responses everyone.

    Kelsey - Yes, that is me at the SD forum. Thanks again.

    Anyone else? :D

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