Neck pickup adjustment..

Discussion in 'Telecaster Discussion Forum' started by beninma, Nov 14, 2019.

  1. beninma

    beninma Friend of Leo's

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    I just dropped the bass side of a my Neck Pickup a hair a day or two ago.

    What a revelation.. This adjustment was maybe 1/4-1/2 a turn of the screw. I haven't touched much of anything setup wise in a long time and am very conservative about making adjustments now. I was pretty happy, this was a subtle thing I guess.

    What a difference though.. makes it way easier to strum open chords or full barre chords without the bass going crazy. I think I had actually been altering my technique to play around this.

    I had played Tuesday night with some friends and didn't have my amp. I was playing through a Marshall that I was not familiar with and I ended up with the bass backed almost all the way off on the amp.. I don't know what it was, it was finally a clue I had something out of whack with the pickup, I had been playing on the neck a lot that night. Really big improvement for clean sounds.

    Funny though that the bridge pickup is so different.. I feel like you want a lot of bass there, I have the bass side higher than the Treble side.
     
  2. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    Yeah all my guitars have the low E side way lower than the high E side.
    I find it helps the overall tone to not have to cut the bass at the amp so much to compensate for a poorly set up guitar that puts out way more low end than high end.
    I can't imagine the bridge pickup being higher on the low E side than the high E side though, I have the low E side a good bit lower and with my typical amp settings I get plenty of bass.

    Part of the bridge pickup and amp settings is that with the bridge pickup lower under the low E, the bass is cleaner.

    But at the same time, some low wind Tele bridge pickups result in an awfully strident high E tone.

    Set the amp for a bright neck pickup tone and the bridge high E will go ice pick.
    Balancing the pickup choices, the pickup adjustments, the amp choice, the amp adjustment, and the speaker/ cab; is a pretty big task.
    Working as a guitar tech my sense is that many many players fight their gear for years, presumably because they just assumed they didn't need to study gear use like they study guitar technique.

    IMO you need to have a neck pickup that is very bright and a bridge pickup that is less bright, so you don't need to use as high a treble setting at the amp to get your neck tone, which creates ice pick bridge tone on the high E string.
    It's a delicate balance of components and settings.
    The large number of players who tend to only use the neck or only use the bridge bears out just how hard it is to really dial in all the gear choices for a totally usable guitar.

    I'm far from perfect in the dialing in, and choose single pickup guitars with the whole rig dialed in so I can get both fat round tones and cutting bright tones from just a bridge pickup.
     
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  3. El Tele Lobo

    El Tele Lobo Friend of Leo's

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    I drop the bass side of my pickups too...esp. the neck. I get the treble side where I want it and then alternate picking the low and high E until they basically match, volume-wise.
     
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  4. beninma

    beninma Friend of Leo's

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    I think what you're talking about causes some people to get GAS too.. gotta get a new guitar/amp/pedal to try and get there when all that was required was really nailing down the setup on the guitar they already have.

    I know a few people with big gear collections and every time they hand me a guitar I can immediately identify something wonky with the setup that makes it way less enjoyable to play that it should be.. but there too busy switching guitars to notice.

    I wasn't saying I have the Low E side of my bridge pickup higher than the High E side. But when I adjusted the neck I tried dropping the bass side of the bridge pickup as well and quickly decided the bridge had been right in the first place.

    I have a Lollar Vintage T neck & a Special T bridge pickup.. the Bridge pickup can get super ice picky if you want to set it up that way.
     
    telemnemonics likes this.
  5. Ragin Cajun

    Ragin Cajun Tele-Meister

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    I just recently started playing my guitars again, and i'm having lot of fun adjusting pickups and turning knobs. I think I've got 'em dialed in, but they may sound different tomorrow
     
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  6. schmee

    schmee Poster Extraordinaire

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    Mine are about even to each other, but I always have the low E string much higher from the frets...
     
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