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

Do I need a dual-humbucker Tele?

Discussion in 'Telecaster Discussion Forum' started by Boomhauer, May 12, 2017.

  1. Boomhauer

    Boomhauer Friend of Leo's

    Aug 18, 2013
    If so, why?

    One of my New Years Resolutions this year was to reduce my clutter and redundant instruments, focus on one special guitar, and knuckle down on my playing. I'm drawn toward Santo Guitars, as they're completely local to me, and have a really cool operation going on. Unfortunately, they only seem to offer a standard single-coil Tele setup as a custom shop option...the only production/retail/non-custom guitars I've seen have been dual humbuckers.

    Besides that, our very own @4514 speaks very highly about his dual-humbucker Telecaster, and has demonstrated over the course of many videos and podcasts the versatility of a guitar like that.

    So, I'll leave with this question to the TDPRI collective: If I've already got a few single-coil guitars (Nocaster/blend, standard Tele, and Jimmy Vaughan-wired Strat), what would an HH-style Telecaster bring to the table for me?

  2. OlRedNeckHippy

    OlRedNeckHippy Friend of Leo's

    Jan 12, 2012
    South Jersey
    For me, not much, albeit I'm country, but I grew up rock-n-roll, from Black Sabbath to the Grateful Dead.
    I have 2 HH guitars, and they are very good, great sounding and playing guitars.
    When I got them, I played them often.
    About 5 years ago I got a Nashville Tele. As time wore on, I found myself playing the HH guitars less and less, and recently I realized I do not play them at all any more.
    I can, and do, get everything I desire from my Nashville, with the help of a well stocked pedal board and a great old Fender tube amp.
    From Skynyrd to George Strait.
    I take one of the HH's to gigs just in case I break a string mid-set, but they never come off the stand. If I had a second single coil Tele, I'd bring it instead.

  3. adamkoop

    adamkoop Tele-Meister

    Feb 18, 2016

    The answer to "do I need X guitar" is always yes.
    Gibson, shupe13, Anode100 and 16 others like this.

  4. brookdalebill

    brookdalebill Telefied Ad Free Member

    Nov 15, 2009
    Austin, Tx
    Cabronitas are groovy.
    First, they have no single coil hum, second Filtertron type pickups sound great, third, they look cool, fourth, they have minimal controls.
    The market has been flooded with them, so they are common, and moderately priced on the second hand market.
    What's not to like?
    therealfindo and Gibson like this.

  5. MilwMark

    MilwMark Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

    Apr 29, 2013
    near Arnold's
    Ultimately I'm with @OlRedNeckHippy, personally.

    I like the particular combination of clarity, snap and dynamics that single coils have over humbuckers. If I want "thicker" Jazzmaster pickups can provide what I need. Or an overdrive pedal.

    Whether you need humbuckers is a different story. To me it depends on if you want a more compressed feel with a lower resonant peak coming right from the guitar. If you do, then you might want humbuckers.

    But I can get all the sounds I want from my single coils, maybe with an overdrive, in my honky tonk band and in my rock band. But the other guitars in my rock band use humbuckers and sound great too. I just don't like how they sound and feel as much as good singles, personally.

  6. Telenator

    Telenator Doctor of Teleocity Vendor Member

    Sep 19, 2005
    I have learned to approach this question from a very different perspective. I no longer go out looking for a particular guitar. It's too limiting.
    For many years now I have bought only guitars that I have stumbled across unexpectedly, and I give everything equal consideration.
    Most of the guitars in my current collection were bought spontaneously because I happened to be in a store and picked up something that really spoke to me. Because of this I have ended up with several guitars that I absolutely love to play and never would have considered buying if I took the approach of, "I'm looking for a very specific guitar."
    I'm a little bit traditional in my gear and musical tastes, but my "go-to" guitar is a Suhr Pro Series 3 that I just happened to pickup and play at a store in New Jersey one day.
    The ONLY way I even consider buying guitars now is to play them first, and to try everything. The best sound you've ever heard just might be that unusual guitar hanging right next to model you "think" you want.
    callasabra, DrBoBo and MilwMark like this.

  7. MilwMark

    MilwMark Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

    Apr 29, 2013
    near Arnold's
    Big +1. I came around to my current thinking while I was exclusively playing really well-made, dual HB guitars, with really nice HBs (Duncan Seth Lovers). At the time I was convinced I liked a bit bigger frets, couldn't use vintage radius and could only play baseball bat necks. And that I hated Strats, and couldn't play them.

    ... until I picked up a '62 AV Stat on a lark. And fell in love. My two favorite stores happened to have that Srat, a '65 AV Jazzmaster and a '64 AV Tele. All used and all in great condition. Traded all my electrics and some amps and have never been happier. I have completely stopped looking at guitars and want none (a good thing!).

    Point being, I had spent about 5 years either buying or having built some really, really nice guitars. That I thought had the characteristics I wanted, but never really satisfied. But then out of serendipity I picked up that one guitar (just to try out a pedal, go figure) and found what I really love. Great take, @Telenator!
    Last edited: May 12, 2017
    Telenator likes this.

  8. Lobomov

    Lobomov Friend of Leo's

    Jul 15, 2013
    Well Yes! ... Yes indeed :)
    bloomz likes this.

  9. HoodieMcFoodie

    HoodieMcFoodie Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

    Oct 22, 2007
    Tamworth, 'straya.
    That's a Les Paul isn't it? I mean if wood has no impact on tone...
    hdvades, Boomhauer and jackinjax like this.

  10. Tonetele

    Tonetele Friend of Leo's

    Jun 2, 2009
    South Australia
    IMHO, conservative as it is , two humbuckers doth not make a Telecaster UNLESS it's a '72 Thinline ( or a re-issue) with those great Widerange pickups. Just my $0.02 worth.
    hdvades likes this.

  11. MilwMark

    MilwMark Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

    Apr 29, 2013
    near Arnold's
    I'm weird in all things guitar, but I don't think so.

    I (sigh) at one point owned two MJT Tele bodies with dual Seth Lovers and two Gibson LP Goldtop Tributes with dual Seths. The Teles sounded and responded as much like the Goldtops as the Goldtops did like each other. They played differently of course (arched top vs. flat top).

  12. Telenator

    Telenator Doctor of Teleocity Vendor Member

    Sep 19, 2005
    I'm not a "Strat guy" either, and my Suhr is more of a "soloist" style body with a slightly pointy headstock, but it serves up some of the best Strat tones I've ever heard and spans the distance from rock to blues to pop to just about anything I call on it to do. I don't really care what it looks like.

  13. ricardo1912

    ricardo1912 Tele-Afflicted

    Jul 26, 2011
    Kent, UK
    I used to play humbucker guitars and really liked them. However, since moving to Teles and single coils again most 'buckers sound a wee bit muddy to me, although my experience is limited. As brookedalebill says, the Cabs are a lot of fun and seem in between s/c pickups and 'buckers.

  14. Telenator

    Telenator Doctor of Teleocity Vendor Member

    Sep 19, 2005
    I did this sound clip 10 years ago. It's very raw so you can actually hear what's going on through the range of frequencies with a WRHB humbucker in a Tele Thinline. I don't think it sounds anything like a Les Paul. To me, it sound like a Tele on steroids with a unique tone. Still very Fender, but with a little extra.

  15. HoodieMcFoodie

    HoodieMcFoodie Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

    Oct 22, 2007
    Tamworth, 'straya.
    My Les Paul comment wasn't really meant to be taken seriously. I should've put a :p in there... Soz.

  16. musicalmartin

    musicalmartin Poster Extraordinaire

    Aug 8, 2007
    Norfolk UK
    I have a Gibson Midtown and as its a semi solid ala thinline rather than the 335 semi style its got a tele vibe to it and covers a lot of ground .
    A good match I have just found is a Donlis (China) P94 hybrid style neck pickup 6.4 K installed in my tele partscaster .Matched with a Van Zandt bridge its getting some nice bluesy jazzy tones which I seek but the bridge pickup is still raw bright tele .No volume match issues .Its just more spunky but not hotter than the standard tele neck even on a 4 way .If i could find a p90 telepickguard that doesnt cost 50 usd to mail to the UK I would have gone that route but happy with the hybrid .

  17. Gibsonsmu

    Gibsonsmu Tele-Meister

    May 7, 2015
    A normal humbucker not really my thing. wide range absolutely. This guitar sounds amazing cranked through a good tube amp like my brown deluxe

  18. TeleAndSG

    TeleAndSG Tele-Afflicted

    Mar 9, 2017
    The Peach State
    Sorry if my answers are trite: what kind of music do you play?. What amp(s) do you have?. Do you like how that guitar sounds with your rig?. I have my eyes on a surf green Duo Sonic with a splittable HB in the bridge, but I will only know if it's going to be mine when I play it through my amp.

  19. PCollen

    PCollen Tele-Afflicted

    May 7, 2010
    Man of the World
    If you are talking about the MIM Standard HH Tele

    1. A belly-cut on the back side of the body.
    2. A rosewood fretboard on a Standard Tele format
    3. The humbuckers themselves: Alternate tones and switching (h/b and s/c them, or not).
    Last edited: May 12, 2017

  20. Tim S

    Tim S Tele-Meister

    Oct 27, 2008
    Upstate NY
    If you don't know the difference between "Want" and "Need", you're in for a world of hurt.
    Last edited: May 12, 2017
    televillian and Ripradiant like this.

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