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Custom Shop Texas Specials vs. Original Vintage

Discussion in 'Just Pickups' started by mjgp3, Oct 20, 2016.

  1. mjgp3

    mjgp3 TDPRI Member

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    Hey all, I posted in the partscaster forum and got some good feedback that helped me sorta narrow down to these two options for a project I'm working on.

    Ideally, I'd like a bridge pickup that twangs pretty hard without much effort and I like neck pickups that have a bit of a Straty vibe.

    The original vintage bridge pickup sounds extremely twangy, which is great. But I think I prefer the texas special neck and definitely middle positions better (I'm guessing this has to do with reverse wound/reverse polarity in the bridge pickup? Is there anyway I can do this after the fact with the OVs?).

    By the way, I'm going off the sound in the generic Fender pickup videos they do... other videos have pretty shaky sound quality.

    I'm leaning toward the texas specials now, but my only concern is that the bridge might not be as twangy as I like... neck and middle pickup sound great though.

    Any thoughts from those who have played one or the other would be great!
     
  2. bsman

    bsman Friend of Leo's

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    I was never very comfortable with the TX specials in the 02 fat strat Texas special I had, but maybe that's just me. I simply thought they lacked a bit of musicality and were rather harsh to my ears.
     
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  3. FMA

    FMA Poster Extraordinaire

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    I have a set of Texas Specials in my Burton Standard tele and love them. The bridge pickup is very good sounding; it can twang and, with a twist of the volume knob, get some growl. But the neck pickup is one of the best sounding tele neck pickups I've heard. No mud. It does sound kind of straty.

    I also have a set of Rio Grande Vintage Tall Boys in my American Standard and that neck pickup sounds very similar to the TX Special. If anything, it has a bit more clarity.
     
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  4. El Tele Lobo

    El Tele Lobo Poster Extraordinaire

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    Try Wilde Keystones or the O.C. Duff Plankster / Big Boy set. The Wilde set will be brighter more like the OVs but VERY clear. The Duff a little fatter. Both have stratty neck pickups.
     
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  5. AJ Love

    AJ Love Friend of Leo's

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    Always liked OV's more than Texas Specials, but thats just me... the OV's sound more like the way I expect my Telecasters to sound and have more tonal variety available. The TS's I could never dial out the heavy mids if I wanted to
     
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  6. Del Pickup

    Del Pickup Poster Extraordinaire

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    I've got TS pups in my Road Worn strat and they were very loud and almost harsh sounding when I first got the guitar but I lowered all the pups down from their original setting - and a good bit lower than the heights recommended on the Fender website - and they sound good now - almost as sweet as the Fat 50's in my MIM strat.

    I much prefer lower output pickups anyway.

    And I also moved the tone control to the bridge pup and that makes that pup much more useable as well.
     
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  7. Antigua Tele

    Antigua Tele Friend of Leo's

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    The Texas Specials are nearly the hottest Tele set by Fender, while the OVs are nearly the lowest. They're wildly different. I fall into the camp that finds the Texas Specials harsh and unfriendly. I like the OV and all the Pure Vintage sets.
     
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  8. Pcaluaru

    Pcaluaru Tele-Meister

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    I like CS texas specials.

    If people are looking to CS Texas Specials to deliver traditional twang best look away. They are modern in tone and performance. IMo they have tele twang but also have a strat vibe (not too much that they don't sound tele like though) IMO they give me a steve ray meets the telecaster vibe. I.e. great for blues!
     
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  9. moosie

    moosie Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    I have a hard time understanding how Tx Specials and OVs could be on the same short list. VERY different to my ears. Vintage low output clarity, vs mid-heavy overwound (by comparison). Both are good, but not for the same tone chase, I wouldn't have thought.
     
  10. Amby

    Amby Tele-Holic

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    moosie you are quite right. Personally I prefer the "old school" OVs, but that's just me.
     
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  11. mjgp3

    mjgp3 TDPRI Member

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    Point taken on how different the two sets are, I'm new to teles! I should clarify exactly what I'm thinking. I prefer the straty, hot, middy neck pickup of the TS. I prefer the classic low output twanginess of the OVs in the bridge. The thing keeping me from just buying an OV bridge and a TS neck (apart from not knowing how well they would match up) is that I love the middle position in the TS set because the bridge is RWRP, not true of the OVs.

    So basically buying either set is somewhat of a concession. So at the moment I'm leaning toward the TS because I love the neck and middle sounds, but what I'm hoping to find out is if the bridge pup in the TS set has enough of a twangy, classic tele sound that I'll be happy with it and not wish I went with something more traditional.


    All I have really to go on sound wise are these videos:

    CS TS:


    OV:
     
  12. bendercaster

    bendercaster Tele-Afflicted

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    I don't think the TS neck and OV bridge will be hum canceling in the middle. The Fender Nocaster bridge and TS neck will be though, and will still give you some nice twang in the bridge position. The Nocaster seems to have more mids, but I wouldn't describe it as being hot, like the TS is.
     
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  13. Bigpernz

    Bigpernz Tele-Meister

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    Never played OV pups but I love the CS Texas Sp set. They cover a lot of ground and when you wire them to a 4 way switch you get an additional sound that is very fat sounding. They get great country twang in the bridge pup imho. However if you are going for that Buck Owens sound there are definitely better options.
     
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  14. moosie

    moosie Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    OP, you should give Don Mare a call. He'll have something (advice AND pickups) to solve your need for distinctly different tones in neck and bridge, plus the ability to work well together.
     
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  15. El Tele Lobo

    El Tele Lobo Poster Extraordinaire

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    Sounds to me like Keystones would be right up your alley. And they come RWRP. Another option is the O.C. Duff Guardsman bridge and the Big Boy neck. Owen will wind them RWRP for you if you ask him. The Keystones are like 78 bucks shipped though for the set, if cost is a concern.
     
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