When you think that you might have to put a Telecaster down!

adjason

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That is a beautiful tele! Its hard for me to believe that it doesn't sound better than a strat or les paul on the neck pickup for jazz or the bridge pickup for leads. Of course it depend upon what style you like to play. I might just put it away for 6 months then take it back out and see how it sounds.
 

ben smith

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Every month about 6 days a month, pain from an old enduro motorcycle accident about 30 years ago. Even won a few races on it. Like a dummy I didn't take a pic of it. Here is a pic identical to it. View attachment 1036317 Great British 441 bike
can't beat a British bike sir, here is mine after I restored it
20221024_121110.jpg
 

Lef T

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Apr 24, 2016
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My only guitar for the last six years has been a Tele.
I recently bought a Jazzmaster which I am going to play the heck out of it.
The Tele is on a stand right beside the Jazzmaster,but for the time being it's going to number 2 position.
 

MelodicBend

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I get a ringing in my ears sometimes that makes it impossible to enjoy any sound at any frequency at any volume. Silence aggregates it even further. Just one of those things that comes and goes.

If you do replace that wonderful guitar or modify it, make sure there's nothing wrong in the chain first like an amp speaker or wiring. For sure, rule out anything stupid first. I like to see if there's anything preventing notes from ringing out as nicely as they should. Most of the time, it's my lack of playing skills. Ha!!!!
 

sloppychops

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OP, that guitar is gorgeous! Maybe that's the problem...it's just too pretty. There is a solution, though. If you send it to me, I'll play it for a couple of years and do my best to put some wear on it. Then I'll send it back all nice and broken in for you. The time away from you will have you pining for it, so when you get it back you'll never again have thoughts of wanting to "put it down."
 

ABetterTelePlayer

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My #1 favorite guitar is my CS NOS 63 Tele that I spec'd myself. It still is the first guitar that I pick up. Lately, sound wise, I'm just not feeling it. I've adjusted the heights of both the neck and bridge pickups but it still doesn't sound right. Have my ears changed their perspective of how I am hearing the tones. I prefer the sound of either of my Strats or my Les Paul right now. It's been this way for a good while now and I although I still reach for it first, I quickly switch to something else.

I don't want to give up on it so I'm going to try some new pickups and have it set up by a professional. Will see how it goes.

If all else fails, I will have a tear in my eye and lump in my throat and let her go. I hope that it can be revived but, if not, I'll be Tele-less for the first time in 20 + years.
Hey man!

I know exactly how you feel, I JUST went through this phase with my Fender MIM Strat which had Gen 2 Noiseless pickups. I have quite a collection of guitars but the Strat was my "go to" for years. A few months ago, I just got tired of it, and even made a post of how I was retiring it. The guitar just wasn't pleasing to my ears and I noticed my other guitars were becoming easier for me to use with set ups (just plug and play, not so much time on adjusting EQ). A couple people told me that I needed to upgrade the pickups and get it set up is all, however my thought process was that I should just let it go and let my other guitars shine - I play at a church every other Sunday SO I rotate my guitars accordingly and fairly.

However, about a month ago, my pastor let me play his American Fender Strat which had some tone riders, the guitar sounded great!

So I started thinking, maybe I SHOULD follow the advice of the guys at my church and I started researching pickups. Ultimately, I bought the Seymour Duncan Hendrix set and got it set up, frets smoothed and polished. It felt like a totally new and refreshed guitar - I've fallen in love with it again.

So YES, you most likely just need a renewal for your love as well. Upgrade it and get it set up and you'll fall in love again. Sadly it costs a bit but it's so worth it!!!!
 

marc2211

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I rotate through guitars. Sometimes I have one that I've played for months that suddenly doesn't do it for me, so I rotate to another to freshen things up. I often find that going SC/Humbucker/p90 etc works well.

I played the same Strat for 20 years but after it had a refret I somehow bonded less with it and started to play my LP more. From there onto a Tele, then back to the Strat which suddenly sounded amazing!

For me it's a case of 'familiarity builds contempt', but I only sell a guitar after I've confirmed I have totally gone off it or never bonded with it;

For example;
- I recently had a Gibson LP Special in TV Yellow I *loved* the look of, but hated the sound of. I tried so hard for a year, but each time I picked it up I hated it, so it had to go.
- I sold my JP Dragon Tele, which was lovely, but just not as nice as my other Tele, but it took me 18 months to get there
 

arlum

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If you had the Telecaster built to your favorite "Playing" specs, i.e. fingerboard radius, fret size, back of neck shape, scale length, tuners, bridge, body weight, etc. I would never sell or trade it in because of a tonal issue. A players taste in tone can change over time. A tone that was once inspiring or matched a specific style you favored at the time of purchase but have since moved on to a different stylistic choice can be remedied with a change in pickups, speakers, or amplifier. To own a guitar built to your favorite "player" specs is a guitar to be cherished and kept for a lifetime.
 

marc2211

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If you had the Telecaster built to your favorite "Playing" specs, i.e. fingerboard radius, fret size, back of neck shape, scale length, tuners, bridge, body weight, etc. I would never sell or trade it in because of a tonal issue. To own a guitar built to your favorite "player" specs is a guitar to be cherished and kept for a lifetime.

I hate to disagree, but I have done this twice now. For me, it's all about the actual guitar in question.

I had (still have but rarely played) a 'number 1' guitar for ~25 years, a MIJ 1993 '54 RI Strat. I played it exclusively to the point that it has had multiple refrets, so I decided to make a backup copy.

I bought an exact body, as close a neck as I could (exact same shape, same radius, frets etc), very similar wiring rig etc. It was a disaster. I bonded with very little on the guitar - it all felt 'wrong', the sound was icepick even changing pots etc. I sold it not soon after and went back to the number 1 for ~another 3 years.

A few years ago I though I'd have another try, but build a 'dream' guitar to near but not exact specs. I went to Warmoth, picked a HT Strat roasted Swamp Ash body, roast maple neck with a deep V etc. I went with 'dream' pickups, top vintage wiring, 'dream' everything, with the intention of never selling it. it was to my 'perfect spec'.

I liked it, it was ok to play, but missed something... I just couldn't bond with the tone. It was 'bland'. I tried new pickups, different pots, you name it. It too went to a new home.

I ended up buying and playing a MIK EPi Dot exclusively for about a year after (still my new number 1), a guitar I'd never even thought of for the last 20 years.

After 6 months I found another Dot, made 1 week later in the same factory as my number 1 Dot.., and bought it as a backup. Guess which gets played? The new Dot is identical, flawless, a clone for all intents and purposes... but really not the same.
 

cousinpaul

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I think it's possible to outgrow a set of specs as your playing evolves or you learn more about what works best for you. I've been through that a time or two. There are other times when a particular instrument can help shape your playing. I think Robben's tele falls in the latter category but you may be on a different path with yours.
 

burntfrijoles

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can be remedied with a change in pickups
This is actually on my list. I want a neck pickup that is warm but with great detail and a neck pickup with some punch but less bite, brightness.
As I mentioned I think my hearing has changed as I’ve gotten older and now my tastes are different.
The guitar plays incredibly well and I don’t really want to take the drastic step of selling it. I couldn’t really replace it as prices have increased so much in the past 10 years. Plus, it was a special order and not a production run guitar.
 

horax

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colorado springs
My #1 favorite guitar is my CS NOS 63 Tele that I spec'd myself. It still is the first guitar that I pick up. Lately, sound wise, I'm just not feeling it. I've adjusted the heights of both the neck and bridge pickups but it still doesn't sound right. Have my ears changed their perspective of how I am hearing the tones. I prefer the sound of either of my Strats or my Les Paul right now. It's been this way for a good while now and I although I still reach for it first, I quickly switch to something else.

I don't want to give up on it so I'm going to try some new pickups and have it set up by a professional. Will see how it goes.

If all else fails, I will have a tear in my eye and lump in my throat and let her go. I hope that it can be revived but, if not, I'll be Tele-less for the first time in 20 + years.

Seriously, this has happened to me a lot. Last time it was my AO50's tele. it was so great...then one day it jsut sounded painfully thin and anemic.
I don't know what hte issue was....tried everything...then I got rid of it.

I have since transferred over to mostly humbuckers iwth split coils if needed, and that suits me fine. Only guitar iwht singles that I have is my CS 63 strat. All others have humbuckers.

I think either my ears changed or what I preferred to hear changed.
 

Stratcat58

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Tastes change, and usually not permanently IMO. Just put it in its case and play the others. No need to get rid of the guitar.

That's what I do. My rotations can last days, weeks, months or more than a year, I'm not in control of that, just grateful I have some choices in the matter.
Agreed
 

Brent Hutto

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Dec 6, 2006
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South Carolina
This is a beginner-level problem and not necessarily comparable to you guys who have been playing for decades but a year ago when I made the switch from acoustic to electric, I bought an Ibanez guitar with humbuckers and a wide, flat neck. I'd tried a couple others that didn't really suit me but I really thought that one nailed both the playability and sound I was hoping for.

Skipping over various GAS-related twists and turns, after about eight months I switched to a Telecaster and that's what I play every day now. Once in a while I bring out the Ibanez and I simply cannot STAND to listen to it. Just sounds awful to me. Unbalanced, muddy, thuddy, with a strangely resonant quality that I hate.

I am using precisely the same (saved) settings on my Katana amp, running through exactly the same pedals as I used then, I've put a brand new set of the exact same strings on there. Even using the same pick and playing the same tunes as back then. It's just awful, how could I ever have enjoyed hearing that every day?

Our perceptions of tone are a mystery wrapped in an enigma...
 

TelePickler

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I adjusted the pickup height and altered my amp's settings. It's fine. I think I've just started preferring my Strat's and Les Paul's tones more. I guess my hearing has changed as well. I've held off on any decisions to move on from it. I still love the way it feels when I play it and I love the Tele's simple style. I have no idea why but Tele's are just the coolest looking guitars ever.
Since someone else already rez'd this thread, I'm curious...how are you feeling about your tele now?

I can somewhat relate. My teles have been my go-to for somewhere around 15 years. I've had some other styles come and go, but the tele was always "it" for me. Until the last year or so. I barely touch my SS tele, spend almost all my playing on an HH tele and HSS strat. I'm not sure if maybe my ears fatigued on the tele bridge pickup over the years, hence why now I'm on to bridge hummies.

I don't think my classic tele sounds bad, but right now I'm more inspired by other tones.
 

G.Rotten

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For me, tastes change but are often cyclical.

With that I'd like to point out that many guitars can be stashed under beds.
 




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