Squier Strat SE Pickup Recommendations for Blues/Classic Rock

Discussion in 'Squier Stratocasters' started by Kaffeine_oo7, Feb 26, 2019.

  1. ElRey67

    ElRey67 Squier-holic

    Jan 10, 2016
    Chandler, AZ
    I've got a set of Fender CS 69's and they nail the blues and classic rock sound for me. I replaced the bridge with a SD SSL-5 tho, to get the Gilmour power lead sound. But the CS 69's are warm, articulate, and full of harmonic overtones especially when played on a clean setting. They just ring out nicely when strummed with medium touch. I know that's a bunch of pickup cliche's but I can't describe them any better. I picked up a used (mint) set for $100. This is, of course, if price is not a concern.
     
  2. Kaffeine_oo7

    Kaffeine_oo7 Squier-Meister

    Age:
    37
    267
    Feb 23, 2019
    Ohio
    Thank you for this. I have heard this from a few others that my old man plays with. Price is always a concern this day in age but it isn't the main concern. How does one place a dollar value on learning, being happy and having fun? Can't take the $ with us when we go anyhow. It's just money after all.
     
  3. Shaytan

    Shaytan Squier-Meister

    Age:
    21
    458
    Apr 10, 2018
    Lisbon, Portugal
    I've bought a set of Silver Series Squier pickups for mine, it's actually close to turn a year since I've got them (and since I've joined this place :D).

    They're the same single ceramic magnet single coils most Squiers came with from the MIJ production (at least I know they're the same of the highly praised E Series line), you can easily tell them apart for having non staggered posts that are flush with the cover and engraved rings on top (similarly to the non height adjustable coil of some humbuckers).

    Those were a tricky purchase because they were the last missing part on my project that was in progress for about 6 months at the time, but since I got them cheap, I figured if they were mediocre I'd just look for a better deal and sell them. They're actually great, those are the sort of pickups that prove wrong the common myth that ceramic pickups are inferior. They have a great dynamic range, surely have a bit more punch than standard alnico single coils, but still their output is clear and bright sounding. I've even compared it against a friend's Mexican Fender and, despite expecting mine to sound worse, I was pleasantly surprised mine sounded considerably better (even my father, who couldn't understand less about guitars, agreed), with a lot more clarity and being the Mexi Fender tone seemingly flatter.

    The good advantage of these pickups is that they sell for dirt cheap, folks buy these MIJ Squiers for their great reputation, first thing they do is to throw away the pickups and get something else because they were told over Ultimate-Guitar that ceramics suck by the guy who never tried one of these out, and put them online for sale. The problem is that they're not as common to the point you find them everyday, plus waiting to find a deal on 30-year-old unpopular pickups isn't exactly the best advice I could give you. Finally, they have a construction flaw where the coil doesn't have that tape covering it, making it susceptible to sweat corrosion or being broken by carelessly taking them off the covers - worth checking if anyone reading this may be looking at a set.

    Before buying these, I found out that among the many people online telling S Series/ E Series owners to get rid of them, actual owners actually praised their tone. Perhaps the whole point is not to look down at possibly interesting options just because some people [who may have never even tried them] say they're crap.
     
  4. BlueSquirrel

    BlueSquirrel Squier-Nut

    876
    Dec 21, 2018
    Europe
    The new Fender Yosemite pickups seem nice and look less expensive than most of their other sets.
     
  5. Kaffeine_oo7

    Kaffeine_oo7 Squier-Meister

    Age:
    37
    267
    Feb 23, 2019
    Ohio
    Now there's a thought... Fralins are extremely nice. Thanks for this.
     
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  6. Kaffeine_oo7

    Kaffeine_oo7 Squier-Meister

    Age:
    37
    267
    Feb 23, 2019
    Ohio
    Thank you. I'll check them out!
     
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  7. DougMen

    DougMen Squier-holic

    Age:
    64
    Jun 8, 2017
    Honolulu, HI
    Since getting my American Performer Strat (my Avatar) with the new Yosemite pickups, I like them so much that I can't play anything else, including my CP60's Strat with CS69's. They're $94 for a set at Sweetwater.
     
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  8. Kaffeine_oo7

    Kaffeine_oo7 Squier-Meister

    Age:
    37
    267
    Feb 23, 2019
    Ohio
    I live about 1 hour from Sweetwater. Might be worth a trip soon - if for nothing else than to slide down their giant indoor slide. Who doesn't like to indulge their inner kid once in a while? LOL Thanks again!
     
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  9. DougMen

    DougMen Squier-holic

    Age:
    64
    Jun 8, 2017
    Honolulu, HI
    If you go to SW, then you could play a CP60's with CS69's, an Am Performer with Yosemites, an Am Pro with V-Mods, a Roadhouse with Tex Mex's, an Am Original 50's with PV 59's, a CP50's with 57/62's, a Deluxe with Vintage Noiseless, a Jeff Beck with Hot Noiseless, and an Am Original 60's with PV 65's, and then you'll have a good idea of the sound of a lot of different Fender Strat pickups.
     
  10. VMamp

    VMamp Squier Talker

    Age:
    71
    89
    Jan 28, 2019
    United Kingdom
    A lot depends on your amp and wether you use floor processors or pedals, the body material of the guitar and what you consider as 'classic rock' tones. I use a valve amp and no pedal boards, floor processors, etc and have to perform a wide range of material, everything regards tone, distortion, etc has to come from the guitar and the amp. For me, single coil pick ups are not versatile enough, lack the volume and punch and with high gain amp settings are too noisy.

    I am a 'humbucker' player simple as that and get clean to rock tones from them with my kit. One of my Strats has three hot rails, a Seymour Duncan (Ceramic based) in the Bridge position with Artec Alnico in the other positions and the body material is Agathis. This guitar has a much wamer sound than my main gigging strat which has a conventional Ceramic based Di Marzio Humbucker with coil tap and Artec Ceramic hot rails in the other positions and the body material is Alder. I prefer ceramic pick ups, these provide the balanced mid range and highs I need and the coil tap tone on the Di Marzio is far better than on the hot rails when tapped.
     
  11. Dave M

    Dave M Squier-Nut

    534
    Feb 27, 2017
    Mira Loma, CA
    Those GM Premium alnicos....That is a great set I have them in my standard...just know they are all 52mm pickups. I love 'em...... "Art of Tone" !!!! has a wide variety of pot's to choose from. I prefer the 450g dish backs...the the "vintage taper" pot for volume, but i use all audio taper on my tones..his stuff is high quality and he cares about the tolerances ..he carrys everthing ecept 25k pots.......You can get a nice adjustable soldering iron on ebay ...comes in a kit...even has solder and a solder sucker...even get shrink tubes for a neater look....https://www.ebay.com/itm/G-M-Premium-Alnico-IIs-Black-Strat-Stratocaster-Single-Coil-Set-For-Fender-/282557038327?hash=item41c9b63ef7
    prices went up on those .....http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-5...0001&campid=5338148356&icep_item=323709589009
    these will be my next set...after alot of research... there are other used but new always watch ebay...got some Hot noiseless jeff beck pups last year new for $115 !!!!
     
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2019
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  12. GEECEE

    GEECEE Squier-Meister

    Age:
    33
    343
    Jan 11, 2017
    MI
    I've got Texas Specials in a HSS and love them - a little fat with a sweet tone. Have regular MIM Standards in a SSS and like them too - bright and clear. You've got soooo many choices!
     
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  13. Kaffeine_oo7

    Kaffeine_oo7 Squier-Meister

    Age:
    37
    267
    Feb 23, 2019
    Ohio
    I was thinking along the same lines. Thanks!
     
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  14. Kaffeine_oo7

    Kaffeine_oo7 Squier-Meister

    Age:
    37
    267
    Feb 23, 2019
    Ohio
    Good points, thanks. The SE I picked up is coming with a Seymour Duncan Red Devil in the bridge. That particular pickup may end up staying once I play on it for a bit. Though I’ve been thinking about going all single coils as I have 2 LPs to scratch the humbucker itch. Won’t hurt to see how I like it though. Thank you.
     
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  15. Kaffeine_oo7

    Kaffeine_oo7 Squier-Meister

    Age:
    37
    267
    Feb 23, 2019
    Ohio
    Yes, there are tons of choices. I like hearing what others think and then researching the gear. It never hurts to have a few suggestions. :)
     
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  16. Kaffeine_oo7

    Kaffeine_oo7 Squier-Meister

    Age:
    37
    267
    Feb 23, 2019
    Ohio
    Thanks! I am not in any hurry so I have lots of time to research and look around for deals. Half the fun is playing as many of these suggestions as I can get my grubby paws on. Thanks for the suggestions. I’ll check them out. :)
     
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  17. oneLOCOman

    oneLOCOman Squier-Nut

    Age:
    64
    599
    Oct 2, 2018
    Missouri
    I have used GFS pickups and they all sound sweet. I hear Dragonfire are good too and they have free shipping. I got Fender TexMex on my VM70 for $70 free shipping and they sound good. Soooo many options out there.
     
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  18. drewcp

    drewcp Squier-Nut

    Age:
    35
    757
    Dec 14, 2018
    Saint Paul, MN
    My recommendation would be to find a current Squier/Fender model that you like the sound of, and then look for a deal on those particular pickups used. The Duncan Designed pups from the VM 70s strat are decent and usually go for fairly cheap.
     
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  19. 5ofeight

    5ofeight Squier-holic

    Age:
    60
    Nov 14, 2016
    Glasgow, Scotland
    I never quite understand the thinking behind changing parts when the guitar has not been played yet, I liked the pickups in my SE as the ceramics have a warmer bluesier tone to Alnico pickups, in saying that I changed them about 5 or 6 months later for a set of vanson single coil Alnico pickups which gave a bit more at higher vol..btw I fitted those ceramics onto my partscaster and still like the warm blues tone they give out..
     
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