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

Fender Vintage Noiseless pickups?

Discussion in 'Just Pickups' started by Clifton C, Feb 3, 2012.

  1. Clifton C

    Clifton C Tele-Holic

    Aug 26, 2010
    Hi, y'all! I was just curious--what's the consensus on Fender's Vintage Noiseless pickups? I'm thinking of buying a Classic 60's Tele and replacing the stock pickups with vintage noiseless.

  2. JaMmeRman

    JaMmeRman Tele-Meister

    Sep 2, 2011
    Memphis, TN
    I have a set in my MIM Standard. They sound good - not awesome but good. But they are dead quiet, and that's really the key thing.

    I play with a guy who has Area T's in his tele and I would probably pick those if I had it to do over again. Of course they are more expensive.

  3. bradpdx

    bradpdx Friend of Leo's

    Jul 16, 2006
    Portland, OR
    Just put a set in my old 52RI for some noisy rooms I play. So far in rehearsal they are quite good - I've used VanZandts for years. I've got a regular gig tomorrow and I'll give a report after that.

  4. musicmatty

    musicmatty Former Member

    Aug 18, 2008
    I like them...but when comparing them to the stock Classic 60s series pups..those stock pups..especially the bridge pup, is Awsome :eek:

    I think I would go with a 'Noise gate' pedal before I would switch over to those Noiseless pups.

  5. bradpdx

    bradpdx Friend of Leo's

    Jul 16, 2006
    Portland, OR
    Noise gates don't address the key problem - that of hum and noise that is audible under your playing, especially when using compression and overdrive. They only prevent hum when you are not playing, which is not an issue for me, I just back the volume pedal all the way back any time I am not picking.

    I'm not claiming that the Fender Noiseless are necessarily as good sounding as various others, and I have loved my VanZandts for many years in my 52RI. But sometimes the situation calls for reasonable compromise.

    So far, I've enjoyed playing the Noiseless pickups at home and in rehearsal. Tomorrow night is a regular gig and so is the real test.

  6. TG

    TG Doctor of Teleocity

    Just my opinion...but I rate the Fender Noiseless neck pickup very highly. It's the tele neck pickup I'd use in preference to any other. You just have to set the height correctly.

    The Fender noiseless bridge pickup had a nice sound, but it was very 'hi-fi' in a way, compared to a conventional tele pickup. Personally I'd love it for home or studio playing but not for live.

    The Dimarzio AreaT or Area HotT are better live pickups, IMO. Identical feel to a regular vintage pickup, in my experience (like the Duncan AlnicoIIpro in particular).
    Again, getting the right height relative to the strings makes all the difference.

  7. musicmatty

    musicmatty Former Member

    Aug 18, 2008

    Agreed ;) Let us know how the gig goes with the pups : :cool:

  8. backporch guy

    backporch guy Tele-Afflicted

    Have the Vintage noiseless pickups in 2 teles. As far as I am concerned, they sound as good as any other tele pickup. Pay attention thopickup height. Fender specs call for
    8/64"/ 6/64" as opposed to lower heights on standard s/c pickups. Start there and dial it in.

  9. franchelB

    franchelB Friend of Leo's

    Sep 25, 2005
    Irving, United States of Texas!
    I like the Fender VNs. But it's not everyone's "cup of tea".

  10. bingy

    bingy Friend of Leo's

    I have one guitar with Vintage Noiseless installed... when I jump between guitars, they sound every bit as good as the standard single coils.

  11. bradpdx

    bradpdx Friend of Leo's

    Jul 16, 2006
    Portland, OR
    See my new post on this elsewhere - the upshot after one gig is that the Fender Vintage Noiseless are pretty darn good, and damn they really are "noiseless"!

    They certainly sound like really good single coils. Do they sound like your favorite Broadcaster/Fralin/Lollar/Mare/Supercalifragilistic hand-tuned mojo pickups? Probably not quite - more like solid regular Fender pickups, but that might be just what you need. Certainly fills the bill for me, and doesn't feel like I am compromising anything significant in order to have drop-dead quiet pickups. That low noise floor is more important that one might think - it really opens possibilities.

  12. Clifton C

    Clifton C Tele-Holic

    Aug 26, 2010
    Wow, thanks for all of the great feedback, everyone! Bradpdx--exactly answered the kind of questions I had. I realize that a pickup--any pickup--will involve a compromise of some kind. This is a great forum, and I really appreciate all of the suggestions everyone had!

  13. nickd

    nickd Tele-Meister

    Apr 18, 2011
    Yorkshire, UK
    Bit of a bump here, but after having VN pups, heres my conclusion.

    Neck sounds awesome, and still retains a good majority of genuine fender tone, and a bit more. It sounds quite stratty.

    Bridge is a bit of a let down, not much bass, lacking mids, and very upper treble. All in all not as good as the neck. (this is after countless combinations of pickup height)

    as said there is always a compromise. However, these pickups thrive on a bit of gain and thats where they shine, if you're looking for a more modern tele crunch sound. Otherwise, they lack that 'ballsy' single coil grit and mojo that quite frankly makes the hair on your chest go curly.

  14. zbbfan

    zbbfan TDPRI Member

    Jan 7, 2012
    Big Rock IL
    I would definantly go with Seymour Duncan's or DiMarsios before fender noiseless. I have only played them once and I thought they sounded kind of weak.

  15. dan1952

    dan1952 Friend of Leo's

    Jun 24, 2004
    Anderson, IN
    Sorry, but I think they sound lifeless. Much prefer DiMarzio Area T's, or the old Evans pickups, if you can find any.

  16. bradpdx

    bradpdx Friend of Leo's

    Jul 16, 2006
    Portland, OR
    Sadly, that has been my experience as well. I dropped a set in my 52RI to deal with a year's worth of shows in a horribly noisy room, and while they do eliminate the buzz the bridge pup is just weak sauce. Neck is quite good.

    This particular guitar has always had no problem being bright, with various VanZandts, Duncans, EMGs and Fenders installed. I am contemplating going further in the "not brittle" direction with a Duncan Little 59 in the bridge, keeping the FVN neck.

  17. JoeyV

    JoeyV Tele-Afflicted

    Mar 14, 2003
    Malden, MA.
    Hi Gang,
    I have used them for a long time in various teles and they have sounded different in each guitar I have owned...Using 250K pots is important to taming the high end on them and dialing in that perfect height is also important as well as using the tone control to smooth out that top end brittleness..What is good about these pickups is that they are quiet, you can get alot of different sounds for many styles of playing from them, they work good with pedals, you can use them with high and low gain pedals and amps....and you can get a set for like 100 dollars....I recently bought a set online and when they sent me the pickups, it was a set of Texas Specials in a Noisless Box...if anybody wants to trade there Vintage Noisless pickps with me, I would be happy to do so..

  18. Telecutt

    Telecutt Tele-Meister

    May 20, 2009
    Hemingway's Bar, Cuba
    I recently put a set in my Tele and in one of my Strats. At first I wanted to pull them out. Then I set the pup heights and played with the tbx and my amp, and I dialed in some amazing sounds. I grew to love them. They're very versatile--great twang, great jazzy cleans, great rhythm sounds--good Tele sounds.

  19. musicmatty

    musicmatty Former Member

    Aug 18, 2008

    Fully agree !


  20. bblumentritt

    bblumentritt Tele-Afflicted

    Dec 3, 2012
    Austin, Texas
    Eric Clapton uses FVN pups on his Signature Strat. Robbie Robertson uses them, too.

    My Nashville Tele has three of them, and I get complements on my tone.

    I practiced for a gig recently using a PRS SE with DiMarzio Air Classics. I spent time getting just the right settings on my effects. Just for grins, I then tried my Nashville Tele, and my first thought, after the first lick, was, "Wow, this is a much better sounding guitar".

    I recently compared my FVN Tele with a AM Dlx Stat with SCN pups. Couldn't really say which one sounded better. They didn't sound exactly alike, but they both sounded really good.

    As has been said, pickup height... pickup height... pickup height.

    Turn your amp up to gig levels. pick an open string note and let it ring. When you move the pup up or down, you can hear the change. Lowering the treble side below "Spec" made a difference. So did lowering the whole thing. Experiment and find the sweet spot for your strings, amp, and playing style.

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