Squire Tele Pickups

deano48

Tele-Meister
Silver Supporter
Joined
May 2, 2003
Posts
120
Location
Hanover, IN
Picked this Squire up this week. Looking for replacement pickups. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.



Red Tele.jpeg
 

bgmacaw

Poster Extraordinaire
Joined
Feb 11, 2006
Posts
9,452
Location
Near Athens GA USA
It sounds like you're contemplating a pickup swap just because "it's a Squier". The truth is that Squier pickups, especially in the upper end of the product line, are actually quite good. You should spend some time with them, adjusting height and such if needed, before making a swap.

If you do end up wanting a different tone, carefully consider the tones you're looking for before you swap. You should take into account the style of music you play as well as your amp and effects. Otherwise, you may make a swap that makes very little difference or improvement in tone.
 

nickmsmith

Tele-Holic
Joined
Jun 5, 2016
Posts
833
Location
USA
I have never been disappointed in Guitar Madness Tele pickups off of eBay. Very inexpensive. I have multiple Teles with their Standard Alnicos, and their 70s style with the staggered poles. Both sound great, and all under 25 dollars. Can’t recommend enough.

Big improvement over my Squier Bullet bridge pickups.
 

jvin248

Doctor of Teleocity
Joined
Apr 18, 2014
Posts
11,248
Location
Lions & Tigers oh Mi !
mostinterestingpickupswapping.jpg


The only things I swap on 'budget' guitars:
-check the fretwork and if needed get a level/crown/polish and it will play like a Custom Shop. However, many Indonesian Squiers have quite good fretwork out of the box.
-Electrosocket jack on Teles
-Shielded cable to the jack, the two wires are noise accumulators, twisting the wires does nothing or we'd use twisted wire from the guitar to the amp
-Upgrade the pots to CTS or Bourns 'full size', carefully selecting to get the guitar tone desired (measure actual units you get).
-Block the trem if it's a Strat style -- trems are just a distraction device for me
-Leave the nut, tuners, bridge block (strat styled ones), and pickups -- unless you want to try a completely different style like going for 'goldfoil'/etc.

-Teles always get a 4-way switch to put both pickups in series for a stealth Les Paul Junior humbucker tone.

.
 

bgmacaw

Poster Extraordinaire
Joined
Feb 11, 2006
Posts
9,452
Location
Near Athens GA USA
-Upgrade the pots to CTS or Bourns 'full size',

Many Squier models use full size Alpha pots. As long as they're within spec there's no need to change them. However, they also often use 500k pots which might be too bright for some so if you're switching to 250k anyway, why not go with a CTS?

My preferred mod for pots is a no-load tone to get close to an Esquire sound.
 

SPUDCASTER

Doctor of Teleocity
Silver Supporter
Joined
Sep 7, 2010
Posts
10,521
Location
Grangeville, Idaho
More info on musical styles you're into might garner more accurate responses.

The Cavalier line has a lot of options. Fender OV's, Nocasters or PV 64's are pretty popular choices.

Bootstrap pickups seem to be quite popular here too.

Many choices, have fun.
 

Footsore

Tele-Meister
Joined
Nov 29, 2017
Posts
124
Age
66
Location
Australia
If you can get a set of Player Series pickups that someone has swapped out they are very good and can be very cheap.
 

Wildeman

Tele-Holic
Joined
Aug 17, 2020
Posts
938
Age
50
Location
Norcal
I've tried several times to like Squier pickups, Affinity to CV and they always get replaced, I really try to like them first though.
 

mimmo

Poster Extraordinaire
Joined
Mar 18, 2010
Posts
5,026
Age
46
Location
Paris France - Rome Italy
I am a very simple guy: if I am still not happy after having played with the pickup height etc. (see @jvin248 post) I wouldo go

- Fender av original pickups for 50s style
- Fender av64 pickups for 60s tone and
- Rob di Stefano from Cavalier pickups if I want boutique built pickups. Rob is great to deal with and his pickups are just phenomenal.
 

68Telebass

Friend of Leo's
Joined
Aug 2, 2014
Posts
2,781
Location
Northern Arizona
https://bootstrappickups.com/products/bootstrap-original-recipe-for-tele®?variant=32052168622165

^^these AlNiCo III from Bootstrap.

$49 Spacebucks gets you spec 7ender “Nocasters” AlNiCo III that go for $180.

I put a set in my Bullet Tele and couldn’t be happier!!
1ADB6313-3082-440E-BEC0-8EBCAE67C551.jpeg
9A7A231C-8D26-4F78-B9B8-E7433BEDA0DA.jpeg
3E931B30-FAE9-4618-B6B5-B75F01468A62.jpeg


I got the “raw nickel” option on the neck pickup cover. ryan at Bootstrap is great to deal with. I hear Rob at Cavalier winds great pickups as well; also in that price range. Here is my souped up cheap Bullet!
3FB38701-B37D-42DD-8FB8-1030D1592A3D.jpeg
 

darkwaters

Friend of Leo's
Joined
Oct 14, 2012
Posts
2,875
Location
Newfoundland
Thanks guys for the suggestions. I just couldn't bond with the original pickups, so I went with the Bootstrap Palo Duro set.
Good move. I left the original pickups in my Squier Standard for wayyyy too long, trying to convince myself that they were fine. They weren’t….
 

68Telebass

Friend of Leo's
Joined
Aug 2, 2014
Posts
2,781
Location
Northern Arizona
Thanks guys for the suggestions. I just couldn't bond with the original pickups, so I went with the Bootstrap Palo Duro set.

Awesome!!!! I’m thinking about a set of Bootstrap “Lakesurfers” (clever name for Jazzmaster) pickups in my Squier VM Jazzmaster…

@Ronzo has the Palo Duros if I recall, and speaks highly of them!!
Good move. I left the original pickups in my Squier Standard for wayyyy too long, trying to convince myself that they were fine. They weren’t….
It’s funny- the ceramics in the Bullet sound very Tele-like. in a good way. They are “low output” (~3.5- 4k if I recall…) but have huge ceramics. They sound…OK for a $129 Squier.

The Bootstraps are probably the best $50 you can put into it!! They sound GREAT!!!!!
 

MattyLa1978

TDPRI Member
Joined
Feb 15, 2022
Posts
31
Age
44
Location
Breezy Point
Oh Yeah!!!! Hot-wound AlNiCo III’s !!!
Thats another reason to grab another Bullet! Lol
I don't have the capacity at this point to do the mods that you did but am being helped by a friend of mine. Working on my CV 60s Tele. The surf green bullet comes on Friday. I'll clean the frets and do a basic setup in the meantime.

Lots of fun and great advice/ideas on here! Thanks!
 




Top