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Fender Pickups for Telecaster - OV or Nocaster?

Discussion in 'Just Pickups' started by Hadlander, May 8, 2019.

  1. Hadlander

    Hadlander TDPRI Member

    May 2, 2014
    Long Beach, CA
    Hello all,

    I'm looking to swap my Harmonic Design (Super90-Bridge, Vintage+ - Neck) out of my telecaster fore something more traditional. My amps tend to be warm/dark, and I'm chasing something clearer in sound/tone.

    I've been looking over Fender's official tele pickups, and I go back and forth between the Original Vintage and the '51 NoCasters (and sometimes the PV 64s, but I go back and forth on those).

    I've fond some clips online of both pickups and action, but I'm still having trouble deciding between the two, and I don't know if the Nocasters will lack the clarity I'm looking for, or if the OVs will be too thin. Any experience with either set?

    If it helps, I've been playing a lot of 50s/60s era rock and roll, soul, blues and rockabilly-type stuff lately, if that helps. No OD/Distorition effects (I really on natural breakup with my guitar/amp), some delay/reverb.
  2. AJ Love

    AJ Love Friend of Leo's

    Jul 10, 2005
    Madison WI
    The thing is, there's no way to know which one will sound better in your guitar with your hands and your amp... A lot of us have learned that the hard way. You'll just have to try them out for yourself. You can always purchase them used and sell whichever one doesn't work for you

    In my experience, the Nocasters are a little "thicker" in the upper mids and have a touch more "snarl" on the lower strings. The Nocasters sound a little more "50's" and the Vintage a little more "60's". The Nocasters have a bit more of their own sound, the Vintage seems to be a little more of a pickup that can change tones based on attack, amp, etc...
  3. Beachbum

    Beachbum Friend of Leo's

    Mar 11, 2009
    Sand Land
    I never tried the "Nocasters". Love my "OVs"
  4. RodeoTex

    RodeoTex Doctor of Teleocity

    Sep 14, 2005
    Nueces Strip
    ^^^ same here.
  5. Dacious

    Dacious Poster Extraordinaire

    Mar 16, 2003
    For clarity the OVs win. They still have some grind if you crank it, can do blues and most styles bar 90s pointy headstock and metal. I love the Nocaster bridge, and the Twisted Tele neck pickup is a big clanging clear bell of a covered neck pickup - combined they're a bit fatter and will overdrive most amps sooner. You can't pull that extra furriness out, you can boost the OVs to the same. I'd have the Nocasters - but if you want clear bitey with a bit of woody grind the OVs are great. The staggered pole 62 set is rarer but worth seeking out if you have a vintage radius neck.
    1revcapps and Ricky D. like this.
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