Swap Classic 50s Bridge Pup for OV '52 or Nocaster?

Discussion in 'Just Pickups' started by VerySlowHand, May 23, 2018.

  1. VerySlowHand

    VerySlowHand Tele-Holic

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    Just recently bought a Classic 50s Tele, which I really like - love the neck, radius, frets, everything except for the bridge pup. Apparently I'm not alone. It's not like I find it ice-picky, but it's a bit one dimensional and 'thin' sounding.

    For now I like the neck pup and I do like the middle position, so I don't want to swap out the bridge pickup for something totally different, just something fuller, smoother(?) and a little warmer.

    Has anyone swapped theirs for an Original Vintage / '52 bridge pickup, or a Nocaster? I'm torn between the two, but I'm sure I'd be happy either way.

    If anyone has, can you please tell me which one you went for and if you're happy with the swap?

    I'll either buy just the bridge for now, or a set and tinker with the neck pup later.

    Thanks.
     
  2. Mudman32

    Mudman32 Tele-Meister

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    If you’re looking for a new bridge pup, consider Peter Florance’s nocaster bridge pup. I replaced the o/v bridge pup in my Avri ‘52 tele. It is amazing.
     
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  3. VerySlowHand

    VerySlowHand Tele-Holic

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    Thanks ^^^ but that's way too exotic for the humble UK market. Easier to buy Fender over here. If I start looking at anything other than Fender (or maybe Seymour Duncan) my head will explode!

    And for a non-technical idiot like me, Fender pups seem like an easy 'pull one out, put one in' soldering job.
     
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  4. Mudman32

    Mudman32 Tele-Meister

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    Well for your side of the pond bare knuckle pups are great too haha. Fwiw the stock pups sound good to me. I would skip the ov and go straight nocaster. Love the bridge in ever cs nocaster I’ve played. Ov are good but I give the nod to the nocaster
     
  5. Dacious

    Dacious Poster Extraordinaire

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    Secondhand 52 reissue pickup if any vintage will do what you want.
     
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  6. VerySlowHand

    VerySlowHand Tele-Holic

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    Thanks Mudman, your 'FWIW' might be worth a lot... I was noodling around late last night and actually getting to like the bridge pup. Maybe he was pleading with me to keep him! (It is a 'him' in the bridge and a 'her' in the neck, right? :))

    I've only been playing this guitar through a G5n and headphones, but my amp arrives today, so it'll be interesting to hear what the pups sound like in the 'open air', so to speak.
     
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  7. Mudman32

    Mudman32 Tele-Meister

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    Don’t be afraid to adjust those pups too. Bridge especially can change with a few turns of a screwdriver.
     
  8. VerySlowHand

    VerySlowHand Tele-Holic

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    Yup, I've also got a copper plate for it, but thought a straight swap would be less fiddling around... although more expensive.

    What do you find happens when the pup is raised and lowered - I did try this last week, but I'm not sure i could really tell much difference. Maybe it's new ears I need!
     
  9. bottlenecker

    bottlenecker Friend of Leo's

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    I felt the same way about mine, and swapped it for a cavalier Bakersfield. I'm happy with it. It's a bright, 50s style sound, and a much better version of that type of sound than the stock pickup.
     
  10. JRShotgun

    JRShotgun TDPRI Member

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    VSH if an OV is readily available, it is a good swap. I did and liked mine very much. I have since went with a Lollar 52T though. So goes the quest for "That Tone" I hear in my head.....to be continued.
     
  11. Ricky D.

    Ricky D. Doctor of Teleocity

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    The OV is brighter than the Nocaster. For me, that cutting high end is something I want to have available. You can take the edge off anytime with your guitar's tone knob. Wide open, that brightness cuts through in a group without being extremely loud.

    If you just don't want the vintage Tele brightness, go Nocaster. It's fatter than the OV.
     
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  12. Mudman32

    Mudman32 Tele-Meister

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    You’ll hear better with a proper amp instead of just headphones. Thinner moved further away, more grit and fatter moved closer.
     
  13. VerySlowHand

    VerySlowHand Tele-Holic

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    Thanks. I'll get the screwdriver out right now. I'm all for saving this little guy and keeping the guitar stock.
     
  14. VerySlowHand

    VerySlowHand Tele-Holic

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    Just put a base plate on the stock pickup, expecting to hear very little difference, but what a difference!!!

    The bridge position is fuller, smoother, but still with plenty of bite. I'm getting warmer, percussive, bell-like tones from the higher notes that weren't there before.

    Middle has maybe a little less of that Stratty spank, but I might be imagining that - it still feels nice, especially when you dig in.

    I had a '52 Telecaster several years ago, when I was too incompetent to appreciate it (and sold it out of guilt) - but this one is now starting to sound like I remember that one did.

    Still tweaking pickup heights, but so far so good.
     
    Last edited: May 26, 2018
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