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Thinline and Solidbody Tele Sound Comparison

Discussion in 'Telecaster Discussion Forum' started by mattyboy, Mar 3, 2011.

  1. mattyboy

    mattyboy Tele-Meister

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    I was just checking out all the good looking thinlines in another thread and was wondering what are the main differences soundwise between a solidbody Tele and Thinline tele? More or less twang? Does it sound closer to a semi-hollow? Thanks!!
     
  2. KC

    KC Friend of Leo's

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    This gets kicked around here every once in a while -- consensus seems to be that there's some difference but nobody can quite put their finger on what it is, maybe a little hollower or woofier, maybe a little more prone to feedback at higher volumes, though this hasn't been my experience at all. I've had both, ended up holding onto the thinline as my #1. My feeling is that there's a lot of variation from tele to tele & the body is just one factor. A pickup change seems to make more of a difference in sound.
     
  3. mattyboy

    mattyboy Tele-Meister

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    Thanks! I already have a solid-body MIM. Perhaps a Thinline with with a humbucker in the neck would be a good variation. I'll have to see what Rondo gets in, as I'm a lefty. Thanks again.
     
  4. howardlo

    howardlo Tele-Afflicted

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    I recently got an SX thinline and have a normal tele and there is quite a bit of difference IMHO. To me it is similar, but maybe not as much so, as the difference in the sound of an LP and a 335. Same pups, but different tone. I can hear the acoustic hollow sound from the thinline and like it a lot. I spent many years playing mainly acoustic, so to me, it is a nice sound. The thinline still has that tele twang, but also has a more open acoustic sound to me. A little more mellow or hollow. It has become my go-to guitar.
     
  5. dlc1953

    dlc1953 Tele-Meister

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    I bought a Agile TC 730 about amonth ago[lefty]. It plays well and A/B it with a Fender Standard and tone was real close. TC better tuners /stock pickups real close/little thicker neck. Then yesterday I but a Klein Fatboy in it[Bridge] gives it alot of body it didn't have before. Like it but still not sure if I would like the solid body better. The fender was a solid ,and i could hear the thinness of the TC tone in comparrison. But the Fatboy really helped.
     
  6. dlc1953

    dlc1953 Tele-Meister

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    I agree totally with the'' Acoustic'' analogy!
     
  7. Racer5

    Racer5 Tele-Afflicted

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    I've been sitting here all afternoon going back and forth between my 52 and my thinline

    Aside from the 'telecaster' name they are completely different

    like it was said above, I don't know if I can place my finger on the differences. I think there are some subtle overtones that come about on the thinline that don't exist on the solidbody, which definitely make for a different sound, but I can't really put into words what the difference is.

    The thinline definitely has that sort of chimey sound you get on a guitar like a 335 or a dot, I don't exactly know how to explain it better... sort of a ringing of the notes that's different than on a solid plank. okay, enough rambling from me!
     
  8. phillip lee

    phillip lee TDPRI Member

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    I play my Thinline at low volume through a PA on a acoustic setting from the Digitech and it sounds like a Classical. My solid body doesn't.
    Played through an amp at higher volumes there is little discernible difference between the two.
     
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  9. boris bubbanov

    boris bubbanov Tele Axpert Ad Free Member

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    +1

    This is the crux of it. At bedroom volumes, all sorts of different personalities can come from different guitars, sometimes without respect to body construction.

    As for Rondo and SX, IMO the difference between Fender and them is actually more germane than which body style is selected. As build methodology departs from the old norms, all sorts of surprises will await you. And these do show up when the Super Reverb is cranked up. IMO of course.
     
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  10. TNO

    TNO Friend of Leo's

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    I think at low volume you hear the acoustic tone of the body mixed with the sound of the amp. At higher volumes the amp drowns out the acoustic tone.
     
  11. Heathcliff

    Heathcliff TDPRI Member

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    I recently came to own both types. I find my solid body tele has more twang, and I love its all-round performance. The thinline is jazzier, but it doesn't seem to do anything really well... I think it either needs more time put in finding the right amp settings, or a basic upgrade to the electronics to make it play the way it should.

    The solid body doesn't need anything though, it feels great to play and always sounds good almost regardless of the amp.

    Regards
     
  12. stratman323

    stratman323 Banned

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    Speaking as a recent Thinline owner, I think I agree with all of that. It's very hard for me to put my finger on exactly what the difference is, but I wanted to experiment as I love Teles but wanted something a little different.

    I do think a type 1 Thinline (single coil pickups) is more attractive than a stock Tele due to the more attractive scratchplate. But I can't think of a good reason why putting air into a Tele body should make it sound better. But maybe that's why it's kinda intriguing?

    With regard to the poster who thought a neck humbucker would sound good in a Thinline, I was thinking yesterday that a neck P90 might suit the character of the guitar better. Sort of old-school jazzy, if you see what I mean.
     
  13. Retroman1969

    Retroman1969 Tele-Meister

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    I honestly didn't think the small hollow chamber would make one bit of difference. Now that I finally own a thinline, I've covered and uncovered the f-hole while strumming and there is a definite woody acoustic sound coming from it that gets muffled when covered up.
    This seems to give it a slightly more open sound and de-twangs it a bit. It's a desired distinction in my case as I play jazz on it.
    As has been said above though, the difference becomes less prominent the more you crank the volume.
     
  14. musicalmartin

    musicalmartin Poster Extraordinaire

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    The SX Thinline body is a real gem and even comes attached to a chunky neck,at least on mine .The SX body is alder same as on my HW1 body I had ,looked as if it came from the same tree LOL..I put some Tonerider Hot classics in it and its a fine guitar punching well above its price .It is fine for jazz and blues and sharp enough for country. It is fine at jam levels too .Really punches out the electric blues.
     
  15. tjalla

    tjalla Friend of Leo's

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    I still subscribe to my thoughts in this thread
     
  16. luvmytelecaster

    luvmytelecaster TDPRI Member

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    Having both i would describe it in several ways. Someone said "woofier" and i agree, tho thats one of those terms that could be taken different ways. I see that as meaning big low end thats not well defined. Wooly is another term i think describes that. Then i also see it as being scooped. High end is pretty snappy and bright and doesn't have the smoothness, but in a sort of good way because all these things together create what i hear as a raw nasty raunch that more than any guitar i've owned lends itself to rock. You might say it is not refined like most guitars. But with most guitars when you try and recreate that raunch you hear in a lot of old recordings they just don't quite make it because they are too refined, defined, and just polite if you will. The thinline is like bart simpson....nasty inconsiderate and in your face. If i had to describe it in a sentence i might say the mids aren't as smooth and round as most guitars and just crunches and clangs like crazy till you add hyper gain.

    That said, i love it but would never want it as my main axe because it won't cover all bases like say my HSS strat does. You can used a well rounded "polite" guitar for most anything even if it doesn't excel at some of them. The thinline i feel is too in your face to blend well in some contexts. None of this is a hard fast rule, but generally thats how it seems to me as far as what works for what. As for whether i'd recommend one...assuming you have other guitars that are do it all sorts i couldn't recommend a thinline any higher. It's at the very top of my list as a alternate guitar to your main. A guitar that really fires up your creativity when the main is becoming too boring.
     
  17. Jack Clayton

    Jack Clayton Tele-Holic

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    I recently got a deal on a warmoth thinline tele with a DiMarzio humbucker from hell in the bridge position and some generic PAF in the neck. So far, I LOVE the sound of this guitar, and I think a lot of it has to do with the semihollow body. "Woofier" is a good adjective. It creates this open-mouthed vocal sound. Almost like a cocked wah. Because of this, it seems uniquely cool sounding with fuzz or distortion. Of course it's hard to say how much of it is the hollow body factor and how much can be attributed to other things. But if you like a dirtier tone, I'd definitely say try some thinlines. Might be your thing.
     
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