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catfish393's picture
St. Louis, MO
Jan 2009
4 years ago

Want to buy a strat, or might just take an old squier and put some new hardware in.

My question is what kind of pickups should I be looking for? There are so many options like:

-texas special
-fender standard
-noiseless
-vintage noiseless?

Drowning in options here.
I play a mix of rock, blues, alt rock, and shoegaze jam.

My current amp is a Vox AC15 if that helps.

Doctor_J's picture
Oct 2003
3 years ago

I have never regretted installing a prewired pickguard with Lace Sensor Hot Golds in two different Strats. If you get the hot bridge pickup option, you have a very versatile guitar in your hands.

Stuff I use:
Standard Strat with Lace Hot Golds; Standard Ash Tele; Fulltone OCD, Line6 M9
My Music

cerebro911's picture
North Carolina
Nov 2009
2 years ago
Originally Posted by catfish393

Want to buy a strat, or might just take an old squier and put some new hardware in.

My question is what kind of pickups should I be looking for? There are so many options like:

-texas special
-fender standard
-noiseless
-vintage noiseless?

Drowning in options here.
I play a mix of rock, blues, alt rock, and shoegaze jam.

My current amp is a Vox AC15 if that helps.

I'd want a powerful and dark hum cancelling single coil in the bridge for some of the rock solos and the shoegaze stuff. Seymour Duncan Hotrails are pretty much the standard. Another popular choice is the Lace Sensor Red and I like the Dimarzio Tone Zone-S.

You might want to mix and match, a true single coil like the Texas Special or something from Rio Grande pickups or a vintage style hum cancelling like the Heavy Blues from Dimarzio in the neck. Maybe another slightly hotter pickup in that vein in the middle and then a powerful hum cancelling in the bridge. You could do a true in the neck, medium powerful and powerful in the middle/bridge. You could go for a P90 emulator somewhere like the Dirty Harry and Dirty Harry Jr. from Rio Grande.

Companies like Seymour Duncan, Dimarzio and Rio Grande have alot of pickups in their product line that hit many different sounds. Just generally speaking, Seymour Duncans are fairly bright, Dimarzios fairly dark and Rio Grande a bit in the middle and more 'vintage' sounding. There are exceptions of course, SDs Hot Rails is pretty dark, the Dimarzio Area pickups are very bright and Rio Grande's railgunner is a very modern sounding single coil.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mmasonmusic
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I believe it was guitars mixed with a sense of desperation to not be dropped by their label...

Talking about wireless pedals...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cham Clowder
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It would be so we could run from one side of the stage to the other, switch from rhythm to lead, run over to the guy on the hammonds to turn on the flanger, and then sneak up behind the drummer and start going nuts on the wah.

Only to realize those pedals were hooked up to the bass!

olddawg's picture
Southern California & Hawaii usually, but I get around
Dec 2004
1 year ago

Hot Rails are stacked humbuckers. Go to a shop and play a few different set up Strats. The only opinion that matters is yours.

Stage Guitars: '80s Thin line LP Custom, '70 LP Standard, '83 Squier Black Headstock Strat w/ Dan Torres pickups, '59 Black Danelectro DC, sometimes others.

Pedal Board: Nady UHF 10 -> TU2 -> Rocktron Big Crush -> 70s MXR Phase 100 -> Cry Baby -> Bad Monkey -> Early '80s Rat -> Early '80s Ibanez CS 9 -> Ibanez DE 7 -> Behringer Dr 100 Stereo Reverb

Stage amps: '63 Blonde Tremolux w/ two original 2X10 cabinets with a '60 Ampeg Rocket/18 watt VTB Marshall clone/ Epi VJ into a Mashall 1965A

fbccars924's picture
Wood River, Illinois
Dec 2010
3 years ago

go high output with your pups cause you can always dial them back when you don't need it and crank it when you want.

Hamer Sat2 or Jackson JRR-94 Rhoads>Laney gc80a or hc25(practice).

Hamer(standard tuning) Ernie ball Slinkies
Alvarez Dana Scoop (standard tuning) D'adarrio 10's
LTD EC200qxm (standard tuning) EB Slinkies

Quote:
Originally Posted by cerebro911
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No love for vintage strings? Let me guess, you play EMGs into a Line 6 and think Jim Root is better than Jimi Hendrix.
sloppy_phil's picture
Toronto, Ontario
Aug 2008
4 years ago

Fralins in a Strat are pretty much the be-all-end-all of life. I honestly could not ask for a more pure tone

lobsty's picture
between Berlin and Melbourne...
Nov 2003
3 years ago
Originally Posted by sloppy_phil

Fralins in a Strat are pretty much the be-all-end-all of life. I honestly could not ask for a more pure tone

I probably sound like a stuck record when it comes to Fralins but I concur most heartily!

Originally Posted by fbccars924

go high output with your pups cause you can always dial them back when you don't need it and crank it when you want.

I take the approach here, especially with Strats: I much prefer to have low/medium output pickups and then boost them if need be. As pickup makers increase windings and magnet strength to get a higher output, they sacrifice clarity and sparkle. Some people may dig that but not others, especially if you like clean sounds.

Crustaceo ergo sum

sloppy_phil's picture
Toronto, Ontario
Aug 2008
4 years ago
Originally Posted by lobsty

I probably sound like a stuck record when it comes to Fralins but I concur most heartily!

I was pretty much waiting for you to chip in; I figured if I set the Fralin bait, sooner or later you'd come sniffing around...

lobsty's picture
between Berlin and Melbourne...
Nov 2003
3 years ago
Originally Posted by sloppy_phil

I was pretty much waiting for you to chip in; I figured if I set the Fralin bait, sooner or later you'd come sniffing around...

I'm so predictable... *sigh*

Crustaceo ergo sum

beerski's picture
Jun 2003
5 months ago

I can only comment on the Hot Rails since that's what Ive got in my strat. Its a great bridge pickup if you're trying to get rid of the trebly sparkle (sometimes ice picky on certain settings) that strats can have in the bridge. It will make it capable of handling a lot of distortion and remaining clear and powerful, so its great for metal and other heavy music. However it almost completely 'sanitizes' the natural strat sound and can make it a bit boring sounding if you don't need all that power.

Fender Strat
Fender Blacktop Tele
TB FX Loop/Channel Switcher > (in loop) > Mojo Hand Analog Filter > EQD Dream Crusher Fuzz > Subdecay Liquid Sunshine > Frazz Dazzler > Line 6 M9 > EHX Memory Toy > (end of loop)
Soldano HR50+

Rig Thread

cerebro911's picture
North Carolina
Nov 2009
2 years ago
Originally Posted by beerski

I can only comment on the Hot Rails since that's what Ive got in my strat. Its a great bridge pickup if you're trying to get rid of the trebly sparkle (sometimes ice picky on certain settings) that strats can have in the bridge. It will make it capable of handling a lot of distortion and remaining clear and powerful, so its great for metal and other heavy music. However it almost completely 'sanitizes' the natural strat sound and can make it a bit boring sounding if you don't need all that power.

I think going with the hotrails in the bridge is a good choice because it gives a much beefier distortion sound, and the neck and middle still have that great strat clean. I think there's a bit of a problem if you can't get enough treble for cleans out of those two positions.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mmasonmusic
View Post
I believe it was guitars mixed with a sense of desperation to not be dropped by their label...

Talking about wireless pedals...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cham Clowder
View Post
It would be so we could run from one side of the stage to the other, switch from rhythm to lead, run over to the guy on the hammonds to turn on the flanger, and then sneak up behind the drummer and start going nuts on the wah.

Only to realize those pedals were hooked up to the bass!