Low output for E and B strings

Prairiecaster

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I have a 2014 Thinline Stratocaster, Japan.

When I play at louder volumes I have very little output from my E and B strings and the leads are getting lost. No issue with volume/output from the other strings. I play with a set of 9s.
Sounds very balanced at low volumes.

I have raised the pickups on the 1st and 2nd string side.
I am considering a heavier gauge string for the E and B.
1656509009117.png


Is this a common issue?

Do you recommend replacing the stock pick-ups with EMGs? I dont want to lose that great Strat sound I have from the stock pick-ups. Thanks for your thoughts.
 

hopdybob

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assuming you mean the high B&E string i would look at the pole pieces.
the B looks as it was falling down into the cavity.
if they are not moving, than raise the pickup.
(and i assume to that you have tried new strings for testing)
 

Si G X

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I've not watch it yet, but this might help. (edit, just flicked though.. yeah he shows you how to do it)

 

schmee

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I have complained a lot about high E string weakness, but never seem to have that problem with the B string.

Most Strat pickups you can push the poles down. You might think about pushing the lower 4 poles down flush on those pickups to balance things out a bit. But those B poles are down a bit, you may be able to push from the back raising those up.

Another option is to get an EQ pedal and try to enhance the highs. but you may just make them brighter not a lot louder.

There is some risk is pushing the poles according to some people. I have not had an issue with it though.
 

PCollen

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I have a 2014 Thinline Stratocaster, Japan.

When I play at louder volumes I have very little output from my E and B strings and the leads are getting lost. No issue with volume/output from the other strings. I play with a set of 9s.
Sounds very balanced at low volumes.

I have raised the pickups on the 1st and 2nd string side.
I am considering a heavier gauge string for the E and B.
View attachment 999115

Is this a common issue?

Do you recommend replacing the stock pick-ups with EMGs? I dont want to lose that great Strat sound I have from the stock pick-ups. Thanks for your thoughts.
You raised the pickups on the treble side, but did you try lowering the pickups on the bass side ? A better pick of your pickups' slant would help.

 
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cousinpaul

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Cut the lows and boost the mids on your amp's EQ. Play around with it til you get a more even response.

You could also try going a little heavier with your E and B strings. The 10-38 set might work well for you.
 

Si G X

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The vintage stagger primarily effects balance issues with the D and G strings.

Even with the B pole below the cover?

I guess it depends on the radius and how you have the strings set up too ... either way, having the poles like they are in his picture just makes it more difficult to get a balance.
 

telemnemonics

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Super easy fix and a super common problem seemingly caused by wanting the pickups to look even more than wanting them to sound even.

Lower all the pickups under the low E!
Then, turn up the bass at the amp!

Of course if you already raised all the pickups under the high E they may not need further adjustment at that end, since level looking pickups are imbalanced BECAUSE THE LOW E IS WAY TOO POWERFUL, not because the high E is too weak to be loud if the pickups are properly adjusted.

This is usually a thinking problem, not a Strat problem. Vintage Strats are epically capable of screaming loud B&E strings!

If it feels uncomfortable to adjust your pickups so they look funny, remember that you can EASILY adjust them back to looking good but having weak high strings.
As an experiment, lower the bass side of just one pickup way way down, like put the middle pickup below the guard on the low E side, turn up the bass at the amp to get back whatever your expected bass volume is, and raise the middle pickup very very close to the high E with 22nd fret fretted.
You shold now have an excessively loud high E and a weak low E.
Set this way the B will be loud too unless all your pickups are damaged. The low B pole is less of an issue than adjustment, plenty of Strats have strong B&E using vintage stagger.
Back to adjusting, if that is too far, bring it back by raising the pickup closer to the low E until the bass is again overpowering the plain strings, then find the point where high and low E volumes are the same.
As you adjust the pickups, figure on adjusting the amp too.
Starting with the weak B&E problem setup, you will need to add bass and also add volume at the amp when lowering the bass output from the pickups.
Also listen for the added bass at the amp possibly adding mids, so if you want more scoop you may need to turn down the mids when increasing the bass. Or not.

All my Fender style guitars have VERY strong plain strings and clear but modest volume bottom strings.
I dont like boomy loud bass from my guitars, and also dont like the way the amp distorts when the pickups are too close to the low E.

If you depend on distorted bass for rhythm playing, IDK, maybe get a bassy OD pedal for rhythm, so you can also have an overall balanced guitar when playing single notes on the high strings.
 
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PCollen

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Even with the B pole below the cover?

I guess it depends on the radius and how you have the strings set up too ... either way, having the poles like they are in his picture just makes it more difficult to get a balance.
The pic is deceptive. There is only a very slight difference between the e and B poles..maybe 1/32 inch max. Consider the thickness of the pickup cover. The B pole is slightly below the TOP of the cover, but not below the bottom of the cover.
 

Foothills

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Those poles are way lower and will do that. Don't try pushing the magnets up unless its a plastic bobbin, If it's the forbon style you're gonna ruin the pickup unless you're really lucky.
 
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