Best mid pos. strat pup for quack?

Discussion in 'Guitars in General' started by GuitarRuss, Jun 19, 2008.

  1. GuitarRuss

    GuitarRuss Member

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    Hey everyone,

    I foolishly replaced my mid position on my '68 reissue strat many years ago.

    I'm looking to get a great 'out of phase' pup. I still have the stock neck position and a duncan jb junior in the bridge. I have a coil split on the junior so I can go for the out of phase sounds with both the neck/middle and the middle/bridge combo. Anyway, I need to order a new pup. I was thinking about fender noiseless, but I don't really know much about this subject.

    With fender noiseless, do they work as one-off pups or do you need all three as a system?

    I've heard it's important if you want quack with out of phase combination then the pup should be low output. I'm playing more funk and ska lately and that quacky sound can be really nice.

    Let me know your recommendations. Thanks in advance.:BluesBros
     
  2. buddastrat

    buddastrat Member

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    For the best "notch" positions you want all three weak single coils. That JB jr. even split is going to make it sound off. It might be close enough for you but it's not an authentic strat tone.

    It's all about compromise and there's no right and wrong. If you want that humbucker sound, you lose some of the old strat tone. If you want noiseless, that's another trade off, all to varying degrees. Only you can know how much, if any you want to give up.

    The absolute best a strat can sound for those notched positions (to me) is with three similar low output, no RWRP middle pickup and some good wood.
     
  3. GuitarRuss

    GuitarRuss Member

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    I would agree with you. However, I like my humbucking bridge pup and the last time I had a pickup added, I asked for the coil split, just to try it out - maybe it'll work, but probably not, but it's worth a try.

    If I can get some quack from the neck/mid notch I'll be happy enough. If the tapped humbucker/mid sounds good I'll be happily surprised.

    The noiseless aspect isn't that important because I already have my humbucker. Some clubs have dirty electricity (a lot of dimmer switches) so that combined with tube amp noise drives me crazy so I'll play mostly in the bridge position in that situation.

    I've heard good things about the fender noiseless, but if they aren't that good I'll try something else. My 68' reissue neck pup is fairly low output I believe.
     
  4. Wickerman

    Wickerman Member

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    I'm happy with my Dimarzio Area '61/58 Set.
     
  5. testing1two

    testing1two Gold Supporting Member

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    If you like the sound of your neck pickup, get the same thing for the middle position, just RWRP. There are some who will say that non-RWRP sounds a little bit better, but it is not enough of a difference IMHO to give up the hum cancelling in positions 2 & 4. If you want noiseless, it would be adviseable to change both the neck and middle pickups. The DiMarzio Area 58's and 61's seem to be the best bang for the buck in this category (do a search and you will find multiple threads concerning the "best" noiseless strat pickup).
     
  6. Mike9

    Mike9 Supporting Member

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    Actually I prefer NON-RWRP for best quack. I shield my cavities and guards and the guitars I build are very quiet. I order custom wound pickup sets with all the same wind and they sound better than the mixed ones. I like 'em the way Leo made 'em.
     
  7. GuitarRuss

    GuitarRuss Member

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    I had thought the quack was because of the RWRP. The original pickup in the mid position didn't have much quack in the notch positions so I assumed it wasn't RWRP. Maybe it's just that my guitar is a rosewood fretboard with a really thick tone. Every time I try a maple neck strat at the store it always has quack galore.
     
  8. GuitarRuss

    GuitarRuss Member

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    Thanks for the input. For the last years I've been trying to make one guitar do two jobs and that involves some compromise. I've ordered a 335 style guitar that will handle the humbucking, thick and round tones. Now, I've decided to return my strat to being a pure strat.

    I've come to believe that higher winds mean less glassiness, sparkle and subtlety, while pushing up more midrange, at least when used in a strat. My original neck pickup sounds so much better than the JB jr.

    I'm not going for the Hendrix/Trower thing this time. I want a bit of that tone in "Lenny" by SRV, some of the bright glassy tones of Eric Johnson and some good quack for funk/reggae.

    I'll be replacing all three so that they match. I'm thinking of Sheptones, Area 51 or Fender Custom Shop. I'll also be looking at some shielding mods to reduce hum so the tone of the pickups is more important than hum canceling. I'll have my archtop for rooms with crap electricity.
     
  9. MartinC

    MartinC Member

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    Three Suhr V60LPs and BPSSC system. The middle pickup has to be non-RWRP for the BPSSC system to work. You'll get fabulous, no compromise, vintage strat tone in all positions with no (or very little) hum.
     
  10. lv

    lv Supporting Member

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    Also, try lowering the middle pickup for more quack.
     
  11. treeofpain

    treeofpain Silver Supporting Member

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    I think the biggest compromise of all is a split humbucker. I've tried a bunch of them, but they just do NOT sound like a real vintage fender pickup.
     
  12. GuitarRuss

    GuitarRuss Member

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    I agree, and while it did serve a purpose for a while, it's got to go. What I love about a great fender tone is the dimensionality and at the last band practice I kept switching to the humbucker and the sound became flat sounding.

    I've heard about lining all the cavities with copper foil. What other mods are there to help reduce hum? Are there any pickguards that are shielded? I might as well do a bunch of stuff at one time.
     
  13. GuitarRuss

    GuitarRuss Member

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    I just checked it out. The Back Plate Silent Single Coil - BPSSC is pretty expensive ($279) so it'll have to wait. I assume it works well with any pickups as long as they aren't reverse wired. I guess it's less expensive than keeping on changing pickups though...

    For the Suhr pickups, are there any clips online that you recommend so I can hear them?
     
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2008
  14. testing1two

    testing1two Gold Supporting Member

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    You can read up on the BPSSC system here: http://suhrguitars.com/pickups.aspx#bpssc

    There's a link at the bottom for a demo from Scott Henderson...and he ain't half bad.

    I still say that it's debatable whether or not non-RWRP gives any more quack or not (or if the difference is anything more than negligible, especially considering there's no easy way to accurately compare the two systems head to head), but now that the BPSSC system exists, it makes perfect sense to spend the extra bucks and get the best of both worlds: real single coil tone (and all the quack contained therein) with virtually no noise. Yay!
     
  15. walterw

    walterw Gold Supporting Member

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    3 of any fine single coils with a non-reversed middle will do the trick with the suhr system.

    listen to a recording of a guy playing a stock vintage strat. it will sound like that, without the noise.
     
  16. MartinC

    MartinC Member

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    Yes, the BPSSC works with any single coil pickups so long as the middle one isn't reverse wired.

    I mentioned the Suhr V60LPs just 'cos they're outstanding pickups for vintage strat tone. As far as clips go, there are audio clips on the Suhr website http://www.suhrguitars.com/audio.aspx. There's a clip by Kynch O'Kaine that features guitars loaded with V60s and the BPSSC (not that the BPSSC changes the tone in any way), and another by Nick Sterling. Have a search on YouTube for "Suhr"+"Classic" and you'll probably find something ... I know there is one there of a big guy with long hair and glasses demonstrating his new Suhr but I can't remember his name or the title of the clip, but he's a really great player. Also, there are a couple of clean solo passages on Guthrie Govan's Erotic Cakes CD that I think are done with his Suhr Classic with V60LPs. You might be able to find clips from that online.

    Good luck!
     
  17. johnh

    johnh Silver Supporting Member

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    The Fender Custom Shop '69's have plenty of single coil glassiness and quack. They sound right up your street and sound absolutely great.

    For me I preferred something with a little less high and and a little more mids, but then you're into a diifferent sound - the one you've already said you're not looking for. I currently have 57/62 pickups in one of my strats - they're great too with plenty of quack and not too powerful, but I think I prefer the CS69's.

    To be honest, after Kinmans (trad mkII's and Woodstocks), Seymour Duncan APS2's, Fender CS'69's and 57/62's the best "strat" pickups I've heard in years are the ones that came stock in my MIM Classic 60's strat. I put them into my MIJ 62 reissue and they beat everything else I've heard. Not too powerful (in fact quite underwound), not shrill or ice picky, nice and hollow and well rounded with nice bass and a sweet high end. It's currently saving me from splashing out on some Fralins or Lollars. I know I'm not supposed to like them this much, but I do.
     
  18. Grant Ferstat

    Grant Ferstat Some guy in obscure bands in a far away place... Silver Supporting Member

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    +1

    I'm yet to hear a convincing split humbucker combined with true single coil mix but I guess one day someone will crack it.
     
  19. Vintage-tone

    Vintage-tone Gold Supporting Member

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    I ve installed sheptones in a maple and a rosewood strat to test em. Everyone, including myself who played em so far were really impressed.
    I compared em with my 54 and 63 that I consider my "reference" strat sounds and it was really close.
    You can ask Shep to match the output on your other pups as well.
     
  20. MartinC

    MartinC Member

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    This is the You Tube clip I was talking about ... don't know for sure that he's got V60LPs in there, but I would think there's a very high probability

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qGvdh9P419A
     

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