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Troy Kelley

Fender Custom Shop Texas Special Strat Pickups

Sound Quality

[Perceived output level] definitly a bit hotter than your normal single coils. [Tone] fatter than stock single coils... a bit warmer too. [Sonic evaluation] like I said above, much fatter, with noticably better differentiation between positions. The "out-of-phase" positions have much more character than the stock singles. The bridge is actually useful now... I never liked the stock bridge pickup -- it was too twangy/trebly... the Texas bridge PU is much fatter... not at all as twangy and annoying as the stock. [For which styles and positions is this pickup (un)suitable] the set comes with neck, middle, and bridge. wonderrful for blues through a turned up Fender. Much more control of sounds via volume control. [Perceived output level] My VOMit doesn't messure mili-amps for output (Damn!) but I would say that they are typical of custom single coil pickups. They are even louder than some humbuckers that I have played through. [Tone] They distort nicely and smoothly no harshness with them at all. [Sonic evaluation] These are very nice! Expect to be pleased. They are the same pickups on the new "Stevie Ray Vaughn" signature strat. They are well constructed too, you pay for a lot in these puppies. I was expecting to loose a lot of my clean sound, but found that it stayed. While it does manage to drive an amp into distortion when the clean channel is cranked (great for AC/DC or SRV stuff!) it tends to convey the great acoustic sound of a strat when the volume is more moderate. The trebly bite of a single coil is subdued - mostly because higher impedance does not carry the treble side over to well, but boosts the midrange (something that most strat's need IMHO). Warm and Fat are two words that some to my mind when I listen to these being played. Another that does as well is "Spongey" - but not muddy. A very nice balance. Though I play with 12's so I don't know how well they'd be on a set of 9's. [For which styles and positions is this pickup (un)suitable] If your gonna play some metal, just throw on some flange and maybe a little reverb and your set. Crank the amp and turn on your stomp box and your doing a damn good rendition of the Smashing Pumpkins. For classical, I'd still prefer my stock pickups. The brightness was really nice there. These do well, but not as well as they should. But they're not intended for that style anyways! I wouldn't recommend these pickups for anyone with a thin necked Ibanez, or a Korean Strat, or any other instrument without a good amount of wood. It would sound nice on a mahogany instrument though! [Perceived output level] Slightly hotter than stock pickups [Tone] Great, Clean, Fat, Warm [Sonic evaluation] Some might not notice a big difference especailly in the out-of-phase selections but positions 1-3-5 are much better. [For which styles and positions is this pickup (un)suitable]



General Comments


?? (I don't have enough experience to rate them, though I'm much

happier with them than my stock singles...)



[Comments] Other notes on Fender Replacement in Specific:


These come in a set of three, I don't think you can purchase them

seperately. Whereas on your stock pickups you'd rarely use your neck

pickup alone (if your like me you'd only play it with the middle as

well, or set up a switch to play tele mode of bridge and neck) With

these on you'll love the fat tone of the neck pickup. Muddy sound is

turned into warmth and depth. An amazing improvement. The bridge

pickup gets tamed down signifigantly so that a blues solo won't make

the hair on the back of your neck stand on end and remind you of

fingernails on a chalkboard. And the mid-pickup is actually used by

itself as well!


Also, the hum characteristic of single-coils is not any worse nor

better with these pickups versus Fender Stock pickups.


Other Notes In General:


The pickups are made under warantee and Fender includes a wiring

diagram for strats (sorry all you other guys - but wait!

Its practically the same anyways!). I'd like to hear these installed

on a Mustang or a Jaguar - they'd probably make them actually sound




[Comments] this is the tone I was looking for. They

work as advertised.


Reviewer's Background

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