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Guitar buying advice
Old 26th January 2009
  #1
Gear Head
 
🎧 15 years
Guitar buying advice

About a year ago I bought a nice American Telecaster. I liked this guitar, but I wanted something a bit fuller sounding and less twangy. So I traded it for a Guild S-100, which is like an SG. I like this guitar as well, but it's not a keeper. It's too loud for us and only works for about maybe a third of our songs. I'd like to find something that cuts like the Tele but has a little bit fuller tone, maybe a little jangle.

These are the guitars I'm considering: Jazzmaster or Jaguar, Les Paul w/ P90s, Rickenbacker 360, or an Epiphone Sheraton.

We're a three piece that play alternative pop rock for the most part, nothing really bluesy or riff-based. My amp is a Matchless Cheiftan, and I have a number of pedals.

Anyway, I know I can go to the Guitar Center to check out these guitars, but it's not the same as playing a guitar at gig volume or hearing a track you just recorded in the studio. So I wanted to know if anyone's had good or bad experience with any of these in their band or in the studio.
Old 26th January 2009
  #2
Lives for gear
 
theGeek's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
I would go with the P90s... since they are single coils they still have some of the bite that you'd get from a Tele but its much smoother. They are, in my experience, louder than a fender style SC but not as loud as a humbucker.

I have found that a great way to try gear is to find someone local that has it and see if you can try it out. Its way better than Guitar Center.
Old 26th January 2009 | Show parent
  #3
Here for the gear
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by theGeek ➑️
I would go with the P90s... since they are single coils they still have some of the bite that you'd get from a Tele but its much smoother. They are, in my experience, louder than a fender style SC but not as loud as a humbucker.

I have found that a great way to try gear is to find someone local that has it and see if you can try it out. Its way better than Guitar Center.
I think that's a great piece of advice.

Don't rule out a Strat either. A Strat with a 5way has a whole bunch of different tones available.

SLO
Old 26th January 2009 | Show parent
  #4
Gear Head
 
🎧 15 years
Thanks for the advice guys. Have you ever recorded with a p90s guitar. I'm curious if you wanted to record some very strummy chord progressions, could you get a crisp but still clean tone or would they start breaking up.

I'm considering getting a Strat. I've had many and I love them. My only concern with a Strat is that everyone uses them and their tone is so familiar. But I guess it's hard to be a guitar player without having at least one Strat.
Old 26th January 2009 | Show parent
  #5
Gear Nut
 
🎧 10 years
i've got an SG that i've dropped the pickups on to get a good tone out of.

I'd have to agree with the P90's Les Paul or the Jaguar ( check out the mustangs too). I think those two are studio workhorses.

i'm pretty firmly against strats, even though i'm a 'fender guy'
Old 26th January 2009 | Show parent
  #6
Lives for gear
 
seaneldon's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
When I was faced with a similar decision, I went with the Ric. I sold it to move up here to Mass, and I now play two Teles (one of them baritone) and a P90 SG. I will be buying another 360 this year to finish off my 6 string arsenal. It theoretically could replace all of them but the baritele.

What a great guitar. And what you are asking for is what it delivers.
Old 27th January 2009 | Show parent
  #7
Gear Nut
 
🎧 10 years
Go with P90's. I have an American tele that I love and a Les Paul special with the soapbars in it. They sound great. The last project I worked on we used the Les Paul exclusively for most of the electric parts. Really smooth and not harsh like too much Tele. If you look for a LP special with the P90's you can find them pretty cheap too. I bought mine as a clearance for 60% off.
Old 27th January 2009 | Show parent
  #8
Gear Head
 
🎧 15 years
I have to admit I really dig the Rick. I'd just be nervous about using it as my main guitar. Can it really cover that much ground?
Old 27th January 2009 | Show parent
  #9
Lives for gear
 
JQ127's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by brianaustinny ➑️
Thanks for the advice guys. Have you ever recorded with a p90s guitar. I'm curious if you wanted to record some very strummy chord progressions, could you get a crisp but still clean tone or would they start breaking up.

I'm considering getting a Strat. I've had many and I love them. My only concern with a Strat is that everyone uses them and their tone is so familiar. But I guess it's hard to be a guitar player without having at least one Strat.
Just did a project using a Les Paul Junior with a P90. It was kind of punky stuff thru a Marshall-not really up your alley from the sounds of it. But it was a kickass sound and really impressed me. We did some rhythm stuff that worked really well but mainly it was lead guitar. Hope this helps....
Old 27th January 2009 | Show parent
  #10
Lives for gear
 
gwailoh's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Not on your list, but maybe audition the Telecaster Thinline 1972 reissue. Dual humbuckers designed by Seth Lover. A good one cuts like a Tele but pushes the amp into breakup faster and sounds fatter at lower volumes.

If you decide to check these out, try playing several. The pickups seem to vary in bite. Also be sure to try them with the tone knob full up treble, then rolled back. The tone circuits seem to vary as well.

From the description of what you're looking for, you might be real happy with the Thinline if you find a good one.
Old 27th January 2009 | Show parent
  #11
Gear Nut
 
🎧 10 years
I'm pretty happy with my G&L ASAT Classic III Telecaster. The pickups are hotter and fatter than the Fender teles and the volume knobs are very useful - meaning I can turn the volume down a notch to get the typical tele tones, and turn it up to get a fuller fat tone with a touch of overdrive.
Old 27th January 2009 | Show parent
  #12
Lives for gear
 
theGeek's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by brianaustinny ➑️
Have you ever recorded with a p90s guitar. I'm curious if you wanted to record some very strummy chord progressions, could you get a crisp but still clean tone or would they start breaking up.
Just roll your volume back. On many guitars this will cause a slight tone loss (there are mods to "fix" it but they don't work that well).. I usually compensate for that by tweaking the amp.
Old 27th January 2009 | Show parent
  #13
Lives for gear
 
seaneldon's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by brianaustinny ➑️
I have to admit I really dig the Rick. I'd just be nervous about using it as my main guitar. Can it really cover that much ground?
Play one. 45 minute minimum to really feel out the neck, which will seem rather small and thin.

The pickup blend knob = priceless for zeroing in on the tone for a given recording.
Old 28th January 2009 | Show parent
  #14
Gear Guru
 
FFTT's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Look for a good deal on a clean used Tom Anderson Cobra or Collings 290.

For cool but cheap, try out the PRS Soapbar SE
Old 29th January 2009
  #15
Gear Maniac
 
Astromann's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by brianaustinny ➑️
About a year ago I bought a nice American Telecaster. I liked this guitar, but I wanted something a bit fuller sounding and less twangy. So I traded it for a Guild S-100, which is like an SG. I like this guitar as well, but it's not a keeper. It's too loud for us and only works for about maybe a third of our songs. I'd like to find something that cuts like the Tele but has a little bit fuller tone, maybe a little jangle.

These are the guitars I'm considering: Jazzmaster or Jaguar, Les Paul w/ P90s, Rickenbacker 360, or an Epiphone Sheraton.

We're a three piece that play alternative pop rock for the most part, nothing really bluesy or riff-based. My amp is a Matchless Cheiftan, and I have a number of pedals.

Anyway, I know I can go to the Guitar Center to check out these guitars, but it's not the same as playing a guitar at gig volume or hearing a track you just recorded in the studio. So I wanted to know if anyone's had good or bad experience with any of these in their band or in the studio.
I have built several guitars (all Strat and tele style)...some modified Les Pauls.
If you want good top twang, an Ash body is good sprayed in Nitro...look up the Guitar Mill with google, they sell Ash...Nitro bodies there.
Good wiring is essential, the Antiquity line of pups by Seymour is good, or Chubbtone and Jason Lollar makes a great P90 and Tele pups as well.
From my experience ...stock pups arent usually that good, they tend to be a bit flat and lifeless.
Unfortunately they dont make them like they did in the 50's and 60's before mass production took hold
Cheers
Old 29th January 2009 | Show parent
  #16
Gear Addict
 
🎧 10 years
I also play through a Chieftain. I'll tell you what I've had the best luck with. And if it's any help, I play indie rocky type stuff with a bit of a nod to Tom Petty. Think the Constantines, maybe?

1. '71 Tele. It really, really cuts, especially if someone else in your band is playing with a Gibson, regardless of P90s vs PAFs. My other guitar player plays an SG with P90s, and for a while there I was playing a LP Special with P90s as well. It was a bit mushy, and when I brought in the telecaster, it really completed the circle if you will.

2. '74 LP Special with P90s. It sounds really, really good, but like I said before, it can sound a bit mushy if you're playing alongside another Gibson. It still sounds great though... beefy but with a good dose of individual note definition when you strum a chord.

3. The total winner - '65 Jaguar. I don't know what it is about this combination, but it just sounds f**king ridiculous. The neck pickup sounds huge, the bridge nice and biting, and if you really want to cut through and make it right up front, throw on the bizarre lo-cut switch. It really doesn't make much sense when you're playing the guitar by itself (as it sounds really thin and brittle), but it does wonderful things when you're playing in a band. Nasty Beatles/Kinks solos? Yes. Think of it as getting rid of all the frequencies that are holding you back and throwing you to the front.

Alright. Nerdage released.
Old 29th January 2009 | Show parent
  #17
Gear Maniac
 
Astromann's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by popvulture ➑️
3. The total winner - '65 Jaguar. I don't know what it is about this combination, but it just sounds f**king ridiculous. The neck pickup sounds huge, the bridge nice and biting, and if you really want to cut through and make it right up front, throw on the bizarre lo-cut switch. It really doesn't make much sense when you're playing the guitar by itself (as it sounds really thin and brittle), but it does wonderful things when you're playing in a band. Nasty Beatles/Kinks solos? Yes. Think of it as getting rid of all the frequencies that are holding you back and throwing you to the front.
Alright. Nerdage released.
You know thats one guitar I have never tried at length... Strats, Teles,Jazzmasters I have played and owned all of those I have heard (and Love) but not the Jaguar!
Astroheh
Old 29th January 2009 | Show parent
  #18
Gear Guru
 
FFTT's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
From the 65 amps thread.

Peter Stroud with a P-90 Jag through the new Stone Pony.

YouTube - 65 Amps Stone Pony demo by Peter Stroud for Boutique Tone - NAMM 2009

Bad room noise, but you'll get the idea.
Old 29th January 2009 | Show parent
  #19
Lives for gear
 
Unclenny's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
I'm readin' a lot of love for P-90's here.

And I agree.

Just slapped a P-94 on The Blonde (custom strat) and now it cuts through like you read about.
Old 30th January 2009 | Show parent
  #20
Here for the gear
 
AK-47's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Jaguar all the way.

Man, I JUST bought a new "Classic Player Series" Fender Jaguar.. All I can say is WOW. This guitar is blowing me away right now. The alterations from the original Jaguar are:

Humbuckers, WITH two coil tap pots. You have a blend pot from Humbucker to Single coil, so you can mix between the two sounds, SO versatile. Best part, TWO SEPARATE POTS (end result: go from strat style neck, to les paul style bridge in the flick of a pick up selector...)

Killswitch, just to be a badass.

That's about it. It retains the classic "strangle" switch (high pass filter, cutting lows and boosting highs for a lead circuit. Master vol, master tone. This guitar has so much life and tone, and is the most versatile thing I've ever played. I've already used it in both pro live and studio applications and it's a winner. It can be anything. Seriously consider it, man. lookin at 700-800 dollars.
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