Budget Teles most suitable for pickup swaps

Discussion in 'Guitars in General' started by james..., May 1, 2016.

  1. james...

    james... Member

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    I've got a pretty nice set of tele pickups my buddy made for me. Only problem, I haven't a tele to put them in.

    In my shoes, What tele would you buy if you had to stay under $400?
     
  2. Bossanova

    Bossanova Silver Supporting Member

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  3. doc

    doc Member

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    Peavey Reactors have very nice necks, but the pickups, electronics and tuners are low quality. They're generally quite affordable. Pickguards aren't standard Fender pattern.
    Used MIM is a good choice.
    Some Squiers are also worth considering. Avoid the "Affinity" ones.
    Older Fernandes TE models and some of the Yamaha Pacificas are good.
     
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  4. Zalu

    Zalu Supporting Member

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    Used G&L Tribute ASAT!!

    Or if you want to stay strictly fender, I've heard nothing but good things about the Squier Classic vibes.
     
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  5. Jay Bones

    Jay Bones Member

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    Another vote for used MIM or Squier CV.
     
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  6. Polynitro

    Polynitro Member

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    CV/C is almost always the answer ,lol
    but especially for this question as they are routed for a full humbucker in the neck.
    The Master Luthiers in China were kind enough and had enough forethought
    to let you get your Keef on if wanted.
    (or andy summers. actually the CVC is a pickup away from being a dead on balls andy summers sig)
     
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  7. cam.man67

    cam.man67 Member

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    VMTDis my choice.
     
  8. james...

    james... Member

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    I always see CV come up in this type of thread. Are they REALLY that good that they are worth grabbing over MIM and G&L?
     
  9. IRG

    IRG Member

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    I tried a bunch of Teles over the weekend. My favorite (unless I go over $1k) is the MIM Standard. Much improved over older versions. Loved the neck feel, the satin finish is the best to my hands. Which also trumps it over the Squier, not to mention a better built and better feeling modern bridge. I know the ashtray bridge is what most people want in a Tele, but the modern bridge sounds good, intonates better, and for my playing style where my hand seems to rest on the bridge itself, it's a lot more comfortable. New the MIM Standard is $600, but maybe, you could find a slightly recent used one for $500. Old ones maybe $400, but not sure what year the new Standards got their upgrades. Personally i think it makes sense to spend a bit more, and get this model. I don't mind Squier, they're pretty nice too, but the Standards are a step up imo.
     
  10. jklotz

    jklotz Supporting Member

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    Just to throw another alternative out there, I recently picked up an Ibanez Talman tm302, and am enjoying it quite a lot. It's a lot of guitar for the $, and the body shape and neck are very comfortable. Just a thought.

    [​IMG]
     
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  11. Bob T.

    Bob T. Member

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    As someone who has not bonded with Teles very well over the years (so take my thoughts with a grain of salt), I would have to say Squier Classic Vibe. Each of the ones I have played have far exceeded my expectations. That's BEFORE I look at the price. I would say that I recommend looking for a used one if possible. Then some killer deals can be had.

    I do own a Classic Vibe 50's Strat that I really liked when I bought it. After a pickup swap, I loved it.
     
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  12. Caribou

    Caribou Silver Supporting Member

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    I might go MIM if I coul
    I have one, and I love it. The CV is a really fun guitar to play and is a great value imo. Perfect? No, but surprisingly good. Most of the MIM teles I've played were not $200 better than the CV. If we're talking MIM teles, I would rather save my $ to get a Road Worn tele-- KILLER guitar.
     
  13. IRG

    IRG Member

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    The newer Road Worn teles are great too, the decreased amount of relicing is a big plus. I had a RW strat, and the neck was awesome. I'm not a fan of Tex Mex pickups though, so for me I'd probably upgrade those pretty quickly. Although I'd give 'em a chance at least. Just didn't like them in a strat.
     
  14. mikealpine

    mikealpine Gold Supporting Member

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    That Ibanez looks really nice! Not traditional, more like a Telemaster/Jazzcaster, but very comfortable!
     
  15. TheClev

    TheClev As seen on TV

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    If you can find a reasonably-priced USA Peavey from the '90s, that's your axe. The necks were really stellar on those. If not, used MIM. If you insist on getting new, CV Tele, which I've never played but have heard lots of people rant and rave about.

    FWIW, I've had a lot of teles over the years. My favorite is an ash FSR MIM Fender that I've upgraded.
     
  16. rummy

    rummy Member

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  17. JohnK24

    JohnK24 Supporting Member

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    A newer, MIM standard. At least you have a chance finding a decent used one under the 8 plus pound weight of the Classic Vibes of recent years. Plus the neck on the MIM standards have a little more meat compared to the thin CV necks and they don't have that dipped in thick honey feel to them either.
     
  18. Ilduce

    Ilduce And now for something completely different! Supporting Member

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    Classic Vibe 50's Tele all the way! I recently picked one up with a one piece body and while a bit on the heavy side it's pretty decent. The only things I plan on changing are the saddles, to compensated ones and possibly the pups. The necks awesome, not near as thin as I expected and dressed great. Keeps tune like a champ. Great all round Tele.
     
  19. swiveltung

    swiveltung Member

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    The one I bonded with playing it unplugged. Every guitar is different.
     
  20. Polynitro

    Polynitro Member

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    depends what MIM. CV/C is better than most MIM Standards but not Baja, Roadworn, or classic 50s/60s
    But they are close to just as good. Some things on the CVC are better than AVRI IMO
    better/thinner finish, better neck radius, full neck route, paint shielding.

    One of the greatest things about the CV/C is they are US spec. Any part that fits a US tele will fit a CV/C

    the only knock on the cv/c is the neck is on the thin side.
    but the squier modern players have decent sized necks and are just as good quality (save for the electronics are crap)

    but the wood, finish, frets, tuners, bridge, pickups is perfectly fine on a cv/c. In other words 90% of it, for 5 times less than a AVRI.
     
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