TV Jones Powertron pickups?

Discussion in 'Guitars in General' started by hooligangorilla, Jan 15, 2020.

  1. hooligangorilla

    hooligangorilla Member

    Jul 21, 2015
    Any owners out there want to share impressions and advice?

    I have a 335 style semi-hollow guitar in need of pickups, and I've narrowed it down to either Classics or Powertrons. I play a lot of rock, pop, indie, P&W, 90s alternative, etc.; I also have a Tele with single coils and an HH Strat with hotter humbuckers... I'm looking for that "middle ground" in my 335 with the unique Filtertron sound. Classics make most sense on paper, but I also seem drawn to the Powertrons' sound in most online demos I can find.

    So, Powertron users: How different is the sound from a PAF? Is it still distinctly Filtertron-ish enough? Do they sound good in semi-hollows? Are the clean tones good? Should I just get them, or would Classics be the best way to go for me based on the above? Any advice appreciated.
  2. ProfRhino

    ProfRhino Member

    Jan 6, 2007
    I would go for Classics, maybe a + in the bridge if you often need fat single note lines.
    but my RHH with regular Classics into a Plexi does vintage ZZ Top all night long (bit of an unlikely candidate, but you can't argue with the tone).
    the Powertrons are a nod towards PAFs, fine PUs, but give me "typical" here.
    a killer alternative would also be Haeussel Tronebuckers.
    very similar to Classics, just a tiny bit more rockin'.
  3. bob-i

    bob-i Member

    Oct 16, 2005
    Central NJ
    I have Powertrons in a Gretsch Jet. They sound very much like the PAF style PUs in my LP. For some odd reason they seem a bit brighter in the middle position, but bridge alone and neck alone are so similar I don’t even change amp settings between the guitars.

    for awhile I had filtertrons in that guitar for awhile. Very different sound, much more spank and jangle.
    ProfRhino and hooligangorilla like this.
  4. blaster

    blaster Member

    Apr 10, 2008
    Where the sky is always blue
    I also have Powertrons in my Power Jet, and I recently removed the bridge pickup and put in a TV Jones Classic for more of the Gretsch twang. The Powertrons were nice to copy the humbucker sound, but I wanted more chime and twang. For your needs the Powertrons may work well.
    ProfRhino and hooligangorilla like this.
  5. shredtrash

    shredtrash Supporting Member

    Dec 7, 2007
    Albuquerque, NM
    I agree with the others. I've played both and the Classics have a more chimey top-end. The Powertrons were great for classic rock tones though! I used a Spectrasonic with Powertrons in a Rockabilly band and they did the job but my Setzer Hot Rod had more spank. Both are great though! For your needs, I would be inclined towards the Powertrons.
    ProfRhino and hooligangorilla like this.
  6. Drew816

    Drew816 Supporting Member

    Feb 22, 2007
    Raccoon City
    Yep, as per the above; Powertrons are more PAF than Filtertron. Classic + for bridge and Classic neck, if you're looking for that Filtertron jangle.

    And hey, maybe you're not a Filtertron guy, that's cool too but with an already hot Hum setup in your kit adding Powertrons to your 335-ish axe is going to get you the same tones; and that's "officially" ok too. ;)

    Good luck!
    ProfRhino and hooligangorilla like this.
  7. pirateflynn

    pirateflynn Supporting Member

    Jan 15, 2005
    The River Bottom, CA.
    I think PowerTrons would be the call in a 335. They have PAF characteristics but are still in the FilterTron camp. They'd work great for what you are describing.
    MoBigBro and hooligangorilla like this.
  8. Waxhead

    Waxhead Member

    Sep 9, 2007
    Surfin at Merewether Point, NSW Australia
    Look at the TV Jones site.
    Powertrons are a great higher output Filtertron.
    More versatile than any PAF style humbucker.
    Delivers fantastic tones thru the whole gain range but lack the twang of TV Jones Classics and Gretsch HS Filtertrons.
    PTs are like a halfway between vintage style filtertrons and PAF humbuckers.

    Having tried them all the TVJ Classic Plus (bridge) / Classic (neck) is the perfect combo imo.
    Gives all the advantages of a higher output vintage filtertron while still keeping the twang and fantastic clarity of standard Classics.

    PT's are a little too PAF sounding for me :)
    ProfRhino and hooligangorilla like this.
  9. MoBigBro

    MoBigBro Supporting Member

    Jul 17, 2018
    Salt Lake City
    Both great pickups, but for the types of music that you listed, I think Powertron/Powertron-plus is the right choice:
    I have this combination in a Pro Jet and they give the guitar a great rock tone.
    They don't do the typical Gretsch-Filtertron thing as well as true Filtertrons of course.
    Again, though, for those musical styles, The Powertrons are a great choice!
    hooligangorilla and pirateflynn like this.

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