TELE PICKUP ADVICE

teleguy234234

Member
Messages
1,229
Some of you may have seen my thread about adjusting pickup height. I have a parts tele that has a Porter Pickups Custom (alnico 5) bridge pickup and a PP Vintage (alnico 3) neck pickup. I had a local, nationally known, respected luthier assemble the guitar and they did an excellent job. My initial concerns were the bridge being a tad quiter than the middle and neck.

I took everyone's advice on raising the bridge and even had emailed the owner of Porter. He seems like a super guy and also recommended raising it. To cut to the chase..after adjusting and letting it sit for two weeks or so..I still don't dig the bridge pickup. I play through a blues jr with a warehouse guitar speakers et65. On my prior tele with alnico 3 pickups ( a squire classic vibe), I had to turn the treble down as it sounded way to ice picky (what I didn't want) on the bridge. Also worth mentioning this guitar with the Porter Pickups has an emerson custom hareness whereas the squire was all stock. On this tele, I find myself jacking the treble on the amp up. The pickups overall sound thick tone wise which I like, not weak. Perhaps since I like the neck pickup, I should order the corresponding bridge to match and use the tone if it sounds too bright? Or should I try adjusting the pickup again?

To sum: the bridge pickup sounds a tad louder than the middle and while it is a nice thick tone like the neck, actually just sounds dull compared to the neck. Wondering if I should buy the Porter Vintage bridge since I also like the neck and just use tone knob on guitar to dial out possible ice pick??
 

Turnipfarmer

Member
Messages
1,088
I always find myself doing some trial and error with tele bridge pickups. Definitely turn some screws! Lowering the treble side a bit can brighten it up and the angle is important too. For bright make sure the bobbin is parallel to the bridge plate front to back or even give it a slight tilt back towards the saddles, it's easy enough to adjust it back to flat if you don't like that added bite. You might have to compromise on the volume issue if lowering it fixes the eq issues.
 
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teleguy234234

Member
Messages
1,229
I always find myself doing some trial and error with tele bridge pickups. Definitely turn some screws! Lowering the treble side a bit can brighten it up and the angle is important too. For bright make sure the bobbin is parallel to the bridge plate front to back or even give it a slight tilt back towards the saddles, it's easy enough to adjust it back to flat if you don't like that added bite. You might have to compromise on the volume issue if lowering it fixes the eq issues.
I see! Well idk something about it just sounds kinda dull though compared to the middle an so neck position. I'm not sure if maybe I've got this made up bridge pickup idea in my head or perhaps I got used to the way the cv sounded and wanted thicker with less ice pick
 

Lewguitar

Senior Member
Messages
5,663
Alnico 3 is the weakest alnico magnet. Weaker than alnico 2. Alnico 3 should really have been named alnico 2 and alnico 2 should have been named alnico 3 because alnico 2 is stronger than alnico 3.

Personally, I don't care for alnico 3.
 
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Tone_Terrific

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
38,180
If you really want to know what a pup offers, disconnect it from the harness and clip it straight to the amp.
If that is not bright enough you will need a different pup.
 

rambleon

Member
Messages
5,551
I too like A3 pickups for the tele neck position, in my case the Lollar A3. Sounds like your bridge and neck pickups may not be matched for output. You can raise and lower the pickups for volume but if you go too far they suffer tonally. I'm not sure what the specs are for the 2 pickups you have, but it seems like you may need a bridge pickup wound slightly hotter than the one you have. I personally like an A2 magnet in my bridge pickup- less harsh and has smoother highs with a touch of midrange.
 

jpervin

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
7,934
I have the Porter Custom set in a Tele and I find that the neck and bridge balance with each other very well. Both are A5. The neck pickup is probably the best Tele neck pickup I've ever had. Fat, bluesy but clear tone. The middle position (both pickups on) sounds fantastic! Excellent for rhythm. I find that there's just a tad less twang with the bridge pickup but there's a whole lot of other tones with that pickup, though it will certainly give up that classic Tele bridge pickup sound if you're hitting the strings almost right over the pickup.

Sounds like the A3 neck and A5 bridge aren't balancing right. Don't know if playing with pickup height will make a difference but it won't hurt to try.
 
Messages
1,775
I'm getting a custom wound pickup from Wiggins Pickups in a few weeks. Love the fact he can make me the tone I want, hand wind the pickup and they have several woods for the top piece. Since I have a maple neck I'm going maple top on my pickup (should match nicely). For only $60 it can't be beat.
 

Mpcoluv

Member
Messages
4,447
Never really heard of vintage wind A5 tele bridge pickups being dull. Interesting. Maybe something is wrong with the pickup or a solder joint?
 

cap217

Senior Member
Messages
3,410
Id say post a clip. We are all guessing here. Ive done the tone chasing thing w tele pickups for years and figured out what I like. But to someone else, they are all close in what they offer. Yours shouldnt be the exception. Id say bad wiring somewhere.
 

rummy

Member
Messages
8,572
I'm using Fralins and I've been very happy with them. Blues special in the bridge and regular neck seem to balance very well.
 

teleguy234234

Member
Messages
1,229
Thanks guys! I may post a clip but my playing time has been limited lately, may ask the shop who assembled it to take a look as wiring is out of my expertise!
 




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