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Tele pickup suggestions please

Discussion in 'Just Pickups' started by mort, Sep 18, 2010.

  1. mort

    mort TDPRI Member

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    So, I have a stock '98 Amer Standard Tele and I'm wanting to do a pickup swap. I haven't tried out different pups before and generally don't do that kind thing but I've had this guitar for a while and it's definitely a permanent family member now and I'd like to upgrade just a bit.

    Ok, here's what I'm looking to do, you tell me if I'm asking too much from a pup swap.

    I like the amount of output and overall feel of the stock pups but I'd like it to sound a little more like it has 11's or 12's on it instead of 10's. I prefer the feel of 10's by far over thicker strings but I love the slightly beefier, more solid sound they give. I'd also like to have just a little more sparkle on the neck pup. Not much more, just a little extra shimmer in the highs without sacrificing the mids and lows.

    Am I explaining something that is reasonable to get out of upgrading the pickups?
     
  2. Mark Davis

    Mark Davis Telefied Ad Free Member

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    You might get better results and more change in sound by changing out the bridge for a 3 saddle one.
     
  3. mort

    mort TDPRI Member

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    I've considered that too. Is it a question of increased mass and surface contact between saddle and bridge? I'm much more of an amp tinkerer than a guitar tinkerer so consider me green in this area.
     
  4. Mark Davis

    Mark Davis Telefied Ad Free Member

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    The theory is more pressure is on the 3 saddle design like the tip of a womans high heel shoe puts alot of pressure on a floor way more than the womans actual weight cause the weight is concentrated in 1 small area.

    Thats how it was explained to me years ago.

    I do know one thing for sure is everyone here thats changed the 6 saddle modern design bridge of the American Std to the 3 saddle liked it alot better and noticed a big differenc e in sound.

    Ive never done this myself so cant say from presonal experience.
     
  5. mort

    mort TDPRI Member

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    That makes sense.


    Another question to throw out there.... why can I not find specs on the stock pups that are in my '98 Amer Tele?
     
  6. mithogo

    mithogo Tele-Meister

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    Before swapping pups, try adjusting the pup height. It can make a tremendous difference. There is a lot of info here and on the web about the effect of pup height changes.

    I'm surprised you can't find the specs, there are bookshelves of info around.
     
  7. OuttaspaceMan

    OuttaspaceMan Tele-Afflicted

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    +1 with Mark and mithogo.

    I've been in a similar situation in the past and I've also found that raising the action a bit higher also helped it make my tele sound fuller. In my case, adjusting the string and pickup height worked hand in hand and gave me satisfactory results without going thru swapping out pickups, YMMV.
     
  8. mort

    mort TDPRI Member

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    I actually have raised the pick up height to about its max height. String height is about medium action and I don't want to go any higher with it. When I raised them up I noticed a slight increase in volume and they seemed to fill out a little more warmth-wise. Definitely a good move. Don't get me wrong, the guitar sounds great. I'd just like to make a minor improvement in the areas I've mentioned. I may just need to start using heavier guage strings vs. getting new parts, but I'm so comfortable with 10's that I just don't really want to.

    I'm considering the bridge idea as well. I just don't wanna throw money at parts and not at least have an assumed idea of what I'm throwing money at.
     
  9. andrenighthound

    andrenighthound Tele-Afflicted

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    heavier strings will give you a much stiffer feel, not that much fatter tone bro. that's the biggest difference in heavier gauge strings. that's why they are used for slide because it's stiffer and harder to bounce on the fretboard. you should just swap out the pickup before you change the bridge. that would be the easiest swap for your guitar. you might mess up the intonation by changing the bridge, especially if your going from a six saddle to a three saddles.

    it's in a hollow body guitar with a floating bridge that heavier strings give the guitar a fuller tone because the heavier strings are putting more pressure on the top wood of the guitar that gives more resonates.
     
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2010
  10. mort

    mort TDPRI Member

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    I'm basing my assertion about the heavier strings' tone on a Strat I used to have. It came with 11's on it and after a bit I went to tens and it was noticably different sounding to me, and then I put 11's back on and it went right back to its original sound. That's the end of my experience with string guage experimentation but I remember it pretty well.
     
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