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New Fender CuNiFe pickups vs old WRH RI Pickups?

Discussion in 'Telecaster Discussion Forum' started by Telefan33, Oct 28, 2020.

  1. Telefan33

    Telefan33 Tele-Meister

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    The new American Original 70s Custom has the new old CuNiFe pickup. Can anyone explain how this pickup sounds compared to the old WRH RI? I have played several of the old 72 Reissues and honestly I never thought the pickups sounded that bad. I have played a vintage 70s Telecaster Custom and the neck pickup sounded pretty. It sounded more like a single coil than a humbucker IMO. I was never a big fan of the Shawbuckers and didn't care for American Pro Deluxe when I A/Bed it with my old 72 Deluxe RI.

    I have a 72 Telecaster Deluxe RI that I'm thinking of putting these new CuNiFe pickups in. Are any of you planning on doing the same? Would this upgrade even be worth it? Is this more like apples and oranges?
     
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  2. VillainSean

    VillainSean Tele-Meister Gold Supporter

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    This inquiring mind would also like to know how the news ones sound/compare to the originals. I've been in love with a buddy's '74 Tele deluxe and I'm also considering putting a set of the new "Cunifes" (yes, I just like saying it) in my AVRI '72 Thinline.
     
  3. bsman

    bsman Friend of Leo's

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    There have been a variety of threads about that (including some with sound samples, etc.) lately.
     
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  4. Dacious

    Dacious Poster Extraordinaire

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    Put simply, the 'old' WRHB reissue pickups are PAF-type bobbins with steel pole screws and a bar magnet in the base and sound more or less like PAF humbuckers, because that's what they are. Not bad.

    The new WRHB Reissues have Tele bridge size bobbins with 10-11kohm of winds with twelve cunife threaded slot-headed magnets as the polepieces.

    They are 'wide range' in that they humcancel but filter less of the signal. They are much brighter yet also with full bass and fairly high output level.

    They are not for everyone. If you love Tele single coil or somewhat mid- compressed PAF tones you won't necessarily find them to your liking.
     
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  5. Telefan33

    Telefan33 Tele-Meister

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    Have you played a new one? Does it sound like the vintage ones? I usually don't like Tim Shaw Humbuckers TBH.
     
  6. Telenator

    Telenator Doctor of Teleocity Vendor Member

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    The re-issues, from any era except the new CiNuFe WRHBs from Fender do not sound at all like the 70's original.

    Bear in mind that, the more overdrive you use, the worse an authentic CuNiFe WRHB sounds, and the less it actually matters that you're playing one.

    Here's a raw clip giving an idea of what it should sound like. The re-issues are pure trash.

     
  7. Telefan33

    Telefan33 Tele-Meister

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    I don't agree that the reissues are trash but the vintage CuNiFe is obviously superior.
     
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  8. Telenator

    Telenator Doctor of Teleocity Vendor Member

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    The re-issues have their place for players who use excessive gain and are not after the clarity a real WRHB can provide.

    As compared to the original CuNiFe WRHB, and the sound that is implied, the re-issues are trash.

    As a stand alone guitar pickup, not being compared to the original, the re-issue is a mediocre humbucker.

    As compared to the multitude of price comparable humbuckers available in the market place, they're trash.

    They're dull sounding pickups that work well at home but struggle to stake a claim in the sonic chaos of a live band.

    (I have a little bit of experience with the re-issues) LOL
     
  9. Telefan33

    Telefan33 Tele-Meister

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    I see what you are saying...
     
  10. Phrygian77

    Phrygian77 Friend of Leo's Gold Supporter

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    Wasn't Curtis Novak was one of the first to offer (modify?) a more vintage correct WRHB, with threaded magnets, around 10 years ago?
     
  11. Phrygian77

    Phrygian77 Friend of Leo's Gold Supporter

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    I don't know what magnet material Mojotone is using, but these sound good to me regardless of whether they sound like the real deal.

     
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  12. Telefan33

    Telefan33 Tele-Meister

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    I think those are the ones I'm going to try. I hear better clarity with and without gain.
     
  13. Phrygian77

    Phrygian77 Friend of Leo's Gold Supporter

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    Their standard wind I think they recommend 500k pots. You can email them and talk to them. They can easily do something custom. For example, I had them had a separate ground wire for a Tele neck pickup.
     
  14. knavel

    knavel Tele-Meister

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    I bought the neck and bridge CuNiFes from Fender in the event Fender does not release something like (or an actual) American Original 70s Telecaster Deluxe that comes with the new CuNiFes in them. If Fender doesn't, then I'll likely get one of those roadworn Vintera TDs and drop the CuNiFes in them, but not my first choice.

    @Telenator is the voice of authority on this. I can only meekly add, that in my family we have a number of interesting things, 53 Tele, 59 Esquire, 71 Rosewood Tele, 76 Tele and my brother put them all away once he bought the new 70s AO Telecaster Custom with the CuNiFe WRHB. To be fair, the 9.5 radius that vintage didn't have really appeals to arthritic hands and this is definitely part of why he did what he did.

    I have a 1975 Tele Custom and the first day I got it about a year ago I gigged it and my brother and I looked at each other given the clarity and smooth but commanding tone and it was an unspoken "where have you been all my life" moment.

    The only thing that I am even passibly good at is writing and recording songs so I have a fair few instruments for different sounds. That in mind I could probably just keep that 75 Tele Custom and be OK. Amazing studio sounds.

    I can't readily tell a difference between my brother's new AO and my 75 TC. I would need to gig them to be sure and I would love to be able to report my findings here, but that really isn't happening much these days!
     
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  15. Telenator

    Telenator Doctor of Teleocity Vendor Member

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    Novak had started doing a rewind and magnet swap back around 03 if I recall correctly, making him perhaps the first to attempt upgrading the re-issue WRHBs.
    But his baseless claims of "vintage correct" continue to astound me to this day.
     
    Last edited: Oct 29, 2020
  16. 63telemaster

    63telemaster Tele-Meister

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    I've never felt the need to change the pickups in my '72 MIM Thinline....one of the nicest sounding and most versatile guitars I've ever played. Never understood the bashing they get from some members here. I know Fender redesigned their reissue WRHB in 2012 (the year of my guitar) so maybe the previous reissues weren't as good....never played one so can't comment.
     
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  17. Telefan33

    Telefan33 Tele-Meister

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    My 72 Telecaster Deluxe MIM is also from 2012. I bought it thinking about upgrades because I got it on sale. I always wanted something else to put in it but TBH lost interest. Now I’m thinking about if the guitar is staying or not and that is why I’m wondering what to do with it.
     
  18. Dacious

    Dacious Poster Extraordinaire

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    Don't confuse the comparison with the originals as bashing.

    If they work for you they're fine pickups. There's nothing wrong with them, it's just that they are noticeably different played clean than the originals.

    As Telenator said, played through lots of effects and gain - the cunife ones are sort of.wasted.

    It's not only the magnet - inside the cover they have bigger bobbins with wider spacings.

    I had a friend with same guitar as you who played in a serious all era Deep Purple band and he could nail any era Blackmore, Morse tones.
     
  19. notroHnhoJ

    notroHnhoJ Tele-Meister

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    White Rabbit Hat Bone? Weverse Round Hum Buggers?
     
  20. 63telemaster

    63telemaster Tele-Meister

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    Not confusing at all.

    Not actually what telenator said....


    Well I have "a little bit of experience" too lol! I also don't go trashing other people's opinions because I think my opinion is more valid!
     
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