In praise of my Fender Vintera Telecaster Custom 70

mimmo

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The Amber Blues is quite hot (10.3 kΩ) and it is not too bright, so in my opinion it suits the WD in the neck perfectly.

Check out VIPots too:

I’m a huge fan of Amber pickups. They are made by Wolfgang Damm, who used to work for Gibson. He’s the guy behind the P94, humbucker sized P90s, apparently.

I used to have the Amber Blues in an Esquire that I had built to my specs, that I later regretfully sold. I‘ve owned close to ten guitars with Amber pickups, humbuckers, single coils and P90s (including Haar and Maybach guitars).

Thanl you Sir, that's all I needed to know.
Much appreciated.
 

mimmo

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Ha, I'm glad you like it! I had always wanted a Deluxe with Cunifes, but had a recent epiphany about how amazing the EVH Wolfgang PUs are and realized I could build a monster Deluxe with them.

Sidenote: I play blues/rock/fusion guitar. I like a bit of gain, but get it from a cranked amp rather than a distortion pedal. I don't play anything heavier than Led Zeppelin, though I might kick on a fuzz for a solo.

Back to the guitar - it's all used parts. I bought the PUs and the neck before I had a plan for them.

It is a MIM 60s profile neck with locking Fender tuners. I think I got the neck from here, but I cannot remember. It is killer. I have a 50s MIM neck that is also well made but a bit too thick for my tastes. The 60s neck is perfect for me. It's a big part of why I love the guitar so much. It's true the headstock isn't a "Deluxe" headstock, which bugs me a tiny bit, but the overall the guitar is so great that I'll live with the headstock. The Tele headstock design is almost my favorite Fender shape anyways.

The body is a Squier Deluxe body I got from ebay. It came loaded, so all I had to do was remove and toss the original PUs and install the EVHs. I thought it was black from the crappy ebay pics, so I was pleased that it turned out to be metal flake gray. It has a bit of damage on the top near the edge that was there when I got it.

I got the EVH Wolfgangs as a used set off ebay for $100. It's difficult for me to overstate how much I like these PUs. The specs are a bit difficult to suss out, but from what I can tell the Standard Wolfgang PUs use Alnico 2 magnets and 42 gauge wire. Both PUs have a 'cocked wah' vibe to them, so even though they are hot, they don't have the muddiness I have heard from other high gain PUs. To my ear, they are kind of like very hot Tele PUs, and I can even roll back the tone knobs and fatten them up just like with single coil Tele PUs. It seems that metal guys buy Wolfgangs but the PUs aren't 'metal' enough, so they replace them and sell them on ebay, so a few times a year it a set shows up for around $100 - this is the second used set I have bought for that. If you really want to to preserve the 70s vibe, you could get Wolfgangs with chrome covers, but I have never seen a used set, so you'll pay $300 for a set, which is too rich for my blood.

So I have under $600 in the guitar. The neck and PUs can be gotten used for ~$200 and ~$100 respectively if you wait for a deal. The tricky part would be the body as they don't seem to show up very often used. I paid $200 and mine was slightly damaged.

The only problem with it is I still want a Deluxe with real Cunifes. That's something to consider if you really want a guitar with a 70s vibe.

I suggest you go to a GC and check out a Wolfgang to see what you think about the PUs. They are what motivated the build. If you don't like them, I suggest you go for the Vintera and save up for some Cunifes.

Sorry for derailing the thread from the lovely Custom in the OP!

You don't have to be sorry, I am the OP! 😁
Very tasteful build, now I got curious about these pickups. Hmmm...
I will have a look at them, I suspect I will stay with the CuNiFe ones but it is worth it to check them out. Thansk a lot for all the details, enjoy this beauty!
 

Tele-friend

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I mean, in my book it shouldn't work, I much prefer nitro finish, bigger necks, more classic configurations etc. but for some reason this guitar just works for me. It puts a smile on my face each time I play in the neck position and an even bigger one when I am in the middle, I do love this sound!
Absolutely, Custom and Deluxe Telecasters rock! There were some threads about em here and I know that some people don't like em. I assume most judge them based on their looks and haven't actually played them. But like you say, for some of us they just work and bring a smile to our faces everytime we play them.
I love the mocha deluxe
Here is my '74 Mocha Deluxe. It is the guitar I play the most, my #1.
20220119_131337.jpg
 

mimmo

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Absolutely, Custom and Deluxe Telecasters rock! There were some threads about em here and I know that some people don't like em. I assume most judge them based on their looks and haven't actually played them. But like you say, for some of us they just work and bring a smile to our faces everytime we play them.

Here is my '74 Mocha Deluxe. It is the guitar I play the most, my #1.
View attachment 943161

Yeah! The groovy 70's is where it's at!

View attachment 943162
Big congratulations to you guys, these are two guitars that I'd play every day of my life: I'd only add my AV52 and I'd have all my needs satisfied. Plus a good acoustic and I'm fine.
 

dreamingtele

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my two cents;

Trust yourself. A good guitar is a good guitar. Doesnt matter how expensive or cheap. Doesnt matter if it’s made of plywood or cement (if you can lift it), but if you enjoy it better than your other guitars, then so be it.

Sell the other guitar you dont love. I also think that a guitar that doesnt get all the love is an expensive paper weight.

If you want to hold onto it, and maybe try to love it, thats okay too. Ive found that the guitars I dont like picking up just needs some dialing in with regards to the set up. Once I like the feel of a guitar under my hands, its a keeper.

Ive had the same experience. My number 1 AVRI 62 was dethroned by a cheaper MIJ 62 reissue. I mean, it shouldnt be. MIJ = heavy, poly finished.. but dang the feel is better! I ended up selling both, but its the MIJ i wish have back. :)
 

mimmo

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my two cents;

Trust yourself. A good guitar is a good guitar. Doesnt matter how expensive or cheap. Doesnt matter if it’s made of plywood or cement (if you can lift it), but if you enjoy it better than your other guitars, then so be it.

Sell the other guitar you dont love. I also think that a guitar that doesnt get all the love is an expensive paper weight.

If you want to hold onto it, and maybe try to love it, thats okay too. Ive found that the guitars I dont like picking up just needs some dialing in with regards to the set up. Once I like the feel of a guitar under my hands, its a keeper.

Ive had the same experience. My number 1 AVRI 62 was dethroned by a cheaper MIJ 62 reissue. I mean, it shouldnt be. MIJ = heavy, poly finished.. but dang the feel is better! I ended up selling both, but its the MIJ i wish have back. :)

Thanks for chiming in.
I agree with your post 100%! Regarding the other guitar, there is nothing to dial in with in order to make it more enjoyable: it is perfectly set up, great neck, weight, pickup, resonance and look.
Only downside is that it is very similar to my AV52 so I don't see any point in playing it, it does not add enough to my usual tonal palette. Simply this.

I am jonesing the idea of a good acoustic, a direct swap could be the best solution for me.
 

ChrisDowning

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Those Vinteras are interesting - the only issue I can see would be my need to want to swap that neck pickup for a real CuNiFe WR. Then that could pull the bridge pickup into the replacement zone - jeez - those could be one expensive day at the Lollar shop.
 

mimmo

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Those Vinteras are interesting - the only issue I can see would be my need to want to swap that neck pickup for a real CuNiFe WR. Then that could pull the bridge pickup into the replacement zone - jeez - those could be one expensive day at the Lollar shop.

I'm going to speak fpr myself of course, but there is non real need to swap the neck pickup. IMHO the CuNiFe humbucker is a better sounding pickup, but I would be more than happy with the stock pickup. If you are interested in these guitars, my advice would be go out and try a banchebunch tonsee if you like them. It is worth it in my opinion. I you can't play before buying, there are some nice YT videos: have a look at the vintera tele deluxe, you'll hear some nice tones out of the stock pickups.
 

ChrisDowning

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Strangely - early this morning I had seen this video - which was why I thought the neck pickup had issues. This video by Dylon makes it seem like this WRHB is a HB packed out with wax to fill the original dimensions cover. I guess the clue to what you are getting is the CuNiFe formula mags. Fender do talk about the American Original having the first true CuNiFe pickup for 40 years - so.... And they sell that separately on their site at over £200
 
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WelhavenTW

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Those Vinteras are interesting - the only issue I can see would be my need to want to swap that neck pickup for a real CuNiFe WR. Then that could pull the bridge pickup into the replacement zone - jeez - those could be one expensive day at the Lollar shop.
I swopped the neck pup on my Custom for CuNiFe, just because I wanted the «real thing». Then I bought a Deluxe too, and after I compared the two neck pups, I’m keeping it stock. To be honest, the difference was not big enough to be worth the money. Both sounds great.
 

moosie

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@mimmo , just seeing this now. Sweet guitar!

How much of the love do you attribute to the CuNiFe pickup?

Adding a pair (and in particular the neck) to my first scratch build changed everything.

I bought them on a whim, hoping to 'fix' a guitar I was struggling to love . I hadn't liked a Seth Lover in the neck, with a single in the bridge. And I was on track to not liking these, either, until I took the time to dial in the neck height per @Telenator's tutorial.

It took a while, and doubts crept in, but eventually I heard the most amazing bloom as I gently picked notes.

With the fat solid rosewood neck, this build is finally coming into its own. These pickups are great for the clean ballads I like to play.



20210701_225648.jpg
 

Telenator

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@mimmo , just seeing this now. Sweet guitar!

How much of the love do you attribute to the CuNiFe pickup?

Adding a pair (and in particular the neck) to my first scratch build changed everything.

I bought them on a whim, hoping to 'fix' a guitar I was struggling to love . I hadn't liked a Seth Lover in the neck, with a single in the bridge. And I was on track to not liking these, either, until I took the time to dial in the neck height per @Telenator's tutorial.

It took a while, and doubts crept in, but eventually I heard the most amazing bloom as I gently picked notes.

With the fat solid rosewood neck, this build is finally coming into its own. These pickups are great for the clean ballads I like to play.



View attachment 959732
I'm so glad you took the time to dial those in correctly. It makes all the difference! Nice guitar!
 

mimmo

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@mimmo , just seeing this now. Sweet guitar!

How much of the love do you attribute to the CuNiFe pickup?

Adding a pair (and in particular the neck) to my first scratch build changed everything.

I bought them on a whim, hoping to 'fix' a guitar I was struggling to love . I hadn't liked a Seth Lover in the neck, with a single in the bridge. And I was on track to not liking these, either, until I took the time to dial in the neck height per @Telenator's tutorial.

It took a while, and doubts crept in, but eventually I heard the most amazing bloom as I gently picked notes.

With the fat solid rosewood neck, this build is finally coming into its own. These pickups are great for the clean ballads I like to play.



View attachment 959732

Hi @moosie your guitars are always so nice. This double humbucker one is just so tasteful, I wouldn't mind to try it ;)

RE your question "How much of the love do you attribute to the CuNiFe pickup?" I'd say: a good amount!

Just like you, I had one of these moments when I finally got the CuNiFe set up as I wanted: everything came to life, simply. I have carefully read the advice from @Telenator and yes, it takes a while but it is absolutely worth it. I actually play this neck humbucker more than my beloved AV52 bridge pickup which has always been my first "grab me" guitar.

The stock Telecaster Custom was fine, you know, Fender Mex is capable of putting together some nice guitars, but swapping the neck humbucker made all the difference.

Honestly I'd like to get the Deluxe version and have two CuNiFe's installed, that would be amazing!
However I'll take my time for this, as I am in a big acoustic/singing sogwriting/country/folk music period, today I should get an Eastman acoustic dreadnought delivered and am still waiting for Gibson to deliver my J45. Gibson, if you're reading, PLEASE!
 

moosie

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Hi @moosie your guitars are always so nice. This double humbucker one is just so tasteful, I wouldn't mind to try it ;)

RE your question "How much of the love do you attribute to the CuNiFe pickup?" I'd say: a good amount!

Just like you, I had one of these moments when I finally got the CuNiFe set up as I wanted: everything came to life, simply. I have carefully read the advice from @Telenator and yes, it takes a while but it is absolutely worth it. I actually play this neck humbucker more than my beloved AV52 bridge pickup which has always been my first "grab me" guitar.

The stock Telecaster Custom was fine, you know, Fender Mex is capable of putting together some nice guitars, but swapping the neck humbucker made all the difference.

Honestly I'd like to get the Deluxe version and have two CuNiFe's installed, that would be amazing!
However I'll take my time for this, as I am in a big acoustic/singing sogwriting/country/folk music period, today I should get an Eastman acoustic dreadnought delivered and am still waiting for Gibson to deliver my J45. Gibson, if you're reading, PLEASE!
Two acoustics on the way! Wow! Post pics if and when. You know the drill :lol:
 




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