Teles and ice picks: can one *truly* come without the other???

livingston22

Member
Messages
24
I guess the title says it all. I’ve been playing (gulp...) 34 years, and never really got along with Teles because of a variety of issues, but mostly due to the dreaded ice picks. Now that I’m a wiser (older), better (older), more mature (older), and curious (I got nothing here) player, I’m GASsing in the worst possible way for a Tele-style git-fiddle.

Which brings the question: are ice picks unavoidable in Teles *without* twiddling with the guitar is amp’s tone controls?

I would very much appreciate it if “Tele moderates” in addition to “Tele fanatics” (you know who you are) were to comment.

Many thanks to all and cheers!
 

Phila67

Member
Messages
1,957
I have a highway one tele and it's not ice-picky at all--I was surprised by that--Rosewood board and fatter bridge pickup. Plus a couple of homebrew things. I don't think telecasters are per se any more twangy than strats in the bridge position, especially if you're not using Fender style amps. The middle position also gives you a nice round sound--imo closer to a les paul in the middle position. You don't have to have the twang unless you really want it. You just have to try them and decide.
 

joelster

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
3,249
I have high output pups in my tele so they are a little less bright but, um, yeah... Why are you afraid to adjust your tone controls? Every guitar is different. Humbuckers are dark. If your rig is tuned for those it probably will sound too bright for a tele. Tweak the tone controls. That's why they are there.
 

TonePilot

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
4,671
I guess the title says it all. I’ve been playing (gulp...) 34 years, and never really got along with Teles because of a variety of issues, but mostly due to the dreaded ice picks. Now that I’m a wiser (older), better (older), more mature (older), and curious (I got nothing here) player, I’m GASsing in the worst possible way for a Tele-style git-fiddle.

Which brings the question: are ice picks unavoidable in Teles *without* twiddling with the guitar is amp’s tone controls?

I would very much appreciate it if “Tele moderates” in addition to “Tele fanatics” (you know who you are) were to comment.

Many thanks to all and cheers!
I got rid of a tele that had three pickups. No icepick from the Suhr Classic T bridge pickup but icepicky on the neck and middle. However, it had a special switch that put the bridge p/u with the neck. But in the end, I didn't like the body style. Much prefer Strats or that style.
 
Last edited:
Messages
318
Which brings the question: are ice picks unavoidable in Teles *without* twiddling with the guitar is amp’s tone controls?
Are you asking out of hypotheticals or wanting a practical solution? Hypothetically I’m sure it’s possible with the right pickup / string / amp combination.

In reality, rolling the tone knob back a hair does wonders in terms of fattening up a tele and removing icepick from the equation. So do your amp knobs. Or a pickup swap.

So the answer either way is “yes”. But I’d say just use your tone knob and call it good. Why complicate it?
 

mikebat

Member
Messages
11,091
After decades of guitar playing and having my tone controls full up at all times, I got a Telecaster. I was scared about thin, piercing tone too.

Then, I heard the girth in the Tele bridge position. Then...I discovered you can tweak that sting with the tone control. The tone control on the Tele is the most useful "simple" tone control in the classic guitars we know and love (rivaled by adding the tone control on the strat bridge pickup)

Don't be scared.
 

dazco

Member
Messages
14,643
I used to have that too tho not with every tele. But what finally fixed it for me was the fender 62 custom bridge pickup. Vitage output and A2 magnets which normally i don't like because they sound too soft. And it;s not the only A2 i tried. I tried the duncan jerry donohue which is also A2 and has the same dull sounding issue i always do with A3. But with the 62 custom no such thing. Just well balanced and 100% void of icepick. I started using it in every tele i had. A big fav at that telecaster forum and cheap too at around $40. Been a few years tho so not sur about thier price or availability today. I tried a bunch of others including a few other fenders like the original vintage and nocaster but the 62c just works for this issue better then anything else. Its one of those pickups that just plain works and nothing about the tone sticks out as a sore thumb, just a no complaint type of pickup that's worked as well in any tele I've put them in. And by the way, i don't like or use tone controls and have mine disconnected !
 

SgtThump

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
7,920
I have a light ‘52 Reissue and it sounds killer. Tele tone, but no icepick. Was kinda surprised by that.
 




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