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Strat pickup set: same output all 3, or hotter bridge pickup?

Discussion in 'Stratocaster Discussion Forum' started by AJBaker, Oct 21, 2020.

All 3 the same or hot bridge pickup?

  1. All 3 the same

    27.1%
  2. Hot bridge pickup

    72.9%
  1. AJBaker

    AJBaker Friend of Leo's

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    What's your preference in a strat?

    All three pickups the same, like back in the day, or do you prefer a hotter bridge pickup?
     
  2. brookdalebill

    brookdalebill Tele Axpert Ad Free Member

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    I prefer a hotter bridge pickup.
    Strat bridge pickups are often comparatively scrawny sounding, IMO.
     
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  3. DougM

    DougM Poster Extraordinaire

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    A slightly hotter bridge pickup to compensate, but only a little bit, not drastically hotter. Otherwise the bridge/middle combination suffers too much.
     
  4. xtelesquirex

    xtelesquirex Tele-Holic

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    All the same. I don't like my volume changing based on what pickup/s I selected.
     
  5. RadioFM74

    RadioFM74 Friend of Leo's

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    All same, and bridge pickup set a little closer to the strings so it's a tad hotter and louder
     
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  6. Mr. Lumbergh

    Mr. Lumbergh Poster Extraordinaire

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    Just raise it, man!
    The classic Strat sounds from the 50's and 60's were made with pickups that were all wound roughly the same and grabbed at random from a box. They varied a little but were generally pretty similar.
     
  7. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Telefied Ad Free Member

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    Weaker neck is probably more important than hotter bridge, if you want a real Strat sort of Strat.
    Hotter bridge like Gilmour uses is still Stratty but not traditionally so.

    I'd choose something like 42awg wound to 6.5, 6.0, and 5.5k for bridge mid & neck.
    Even with the bridge as high as possible, at those coil winds you still need to lower the neck a lot to get it to balance.

    While the neck might sound great with the typically big warm bottom, if you dial in the amp for that big bottom neck tone it makes the bridge sound weak and thin.
    Lower the neck pickup especially under the low E, then turn up the bass on the amp to fatten up the bridge pickup.
     
    Last edited: Oct 21, 2020
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  8. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Telefied Ad Free Member

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    You control output with height more than with turns on the coil.
    Unless you're thinking hot HB at the bridge and stock Strat SC at the neck.
    It's actually harder to get the same volume from each pickup with three Strat pickups wound the same, because the bridge position is so weak compared to the strong neck position.

    I've had a 5.8, 6.0, 6.2 set that balanced really well but it was AFAIK from 1954 so had the rare A3 magnets, generally weak in the bass already so the neck didn't boom as much.

    I put a 5.4 Strat neck with a 6.8 Tele bridge and it was still easy to get the neck louder just by raising it a little.
    All these were 42awg wire.
    Judging by dcr resistance goes out the window when the wire gauge is different.

    The Duncan SSL5 Gilmour uses is around 12k but very thin wire, maybe 44awg, so the turn count or output isn't as crazy as the number implies.
     
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  9. xtelesquirex

    xtelesquirex Tele-Holic

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    For me, adjusting pickup height is a given. I think Fender's suggested specs are far too high. The last strat I had was equipped with 'vintage voiced' singles each measuring roughly 5.5 to 6. It didn't seem like much struggle to get it balanced. Maybe because I run my pups pretty low to begin with? I don't know. I'm told resistance doesn't mean much, but that's the only measurement I have. I don't know how they were wound or with which magnets.
     
  10. Ess Eff

    Ess Eff Tele-Afflicted

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    Interesting, that ppl don't realise that the bridge pup naturally has a lower volume because the strings have a smaller vibration range as they get closer to the bridge.

    Of course you need a higher output bridge pup to balance the vols. If u have all 3 the same output, you'll have unbalanced vols.

    Raising the bridge helps but often is not enuf.

    In fact even when Fender was using all 3 pups with the same output, they realised they cud increase the bridge output by by-passing the tone control and get better balanced vols.

    Ppl often say, they don't understand Fender's logic for not having a tone control on the pup that needs it the most. Well, your answer is in the paragraph above.
    .
     
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  11. braveheart

    braveheart Tele-Afflicted

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    I use a hotter sc or hb (sc size) at the bridge and a little hotter neck sc....
     
  12. Togman

    Togman Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

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    This just about sums it up.
     
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  13. eclecticsynergy

    eclecticsynergy Friend of Leo's

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    I prefer a hotter bridge,not just for volume balance but for a little extra body in the tone.
     
  14. Guitarteach

    Guitarteach Doctor of Teleocity

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    I use the Seymour Duncan quarter pounder ‘middle’ wound pickup in the bridge posistion. Its warmer and fatter for leads but not too hot. The in between sound is still excellent.

    i just find the stock bridge too thin and scrawny.
     
  15. Lies&Distortion

    Lies&Distortion Tele-Afflicted

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    A little hotter, and usually by height.
     
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  16. blacktuesday

    blacktuesday TDPRI Member

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    Just a little bit. Don't really like too much disparity between the pickups. Usually just enough that a little height adjustment gets me where I like.
     
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  17. JL_LI

    JL_LI Friend of Leo's

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    In this casem my preference is dictated by my playing style. My #1 Strat has FCS '69 Strat pickups, all low wind pickups. Playing fingerstyle, I use mostly the middle pickup, sometimes the neck pickup. There are songs where I use a flat pick, almost always with the bridge pickup. A pick is always louder. The close to even balance between pickups works for me with the bridge pickup played with a pick louder, but not by a lot. A hotter bridge pickup would require more twisting of the dials and would actually get in the way. I have VN pickups in my other Strat. Again, they're pretty evenly balanced. The bridge pickup isn't anemic with a pick, but I don't like it much fingerstyle.
     
  18. whoanelly15

    whoanelly15 Tele-Afflicted

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    That.
    This.
    Uh huh. I quite like my Fender CS 54 Strat pickups. They do it all for me. Haven’t measured my own, but from the specs:
    Neck/Middle Pickups: 5.9K. Bridge: 6.5K
     
  19. SnidelyWhiplash

    SnidelyWhiplash Friend of Leo's

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    Both my Strats have the same outputs in all positions. Van Zandt TV in one & V+ in another.

    Like em that way... :)
     
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  20. dlaroe

    dlaroe Tele-Meister

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    I appreciate a standard/lower wind bridge pickup tone but mine has a hotter bridge; Rose Robustas w/ a Buff Beauty.

    Leaving out HSS players, I always wondered if Tele players were more likely than their single coil brethren to choose a hotter Strat bridge pickup.

    I know I like bridge pickups with authority but am way more likely to choose lower output and higher fidelity neck pickups.
     
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