#1
I bought the Fender American Special Stratocaster but I don't like the tone. The guitar itself is amazing. The pickups are a bit to noisy for me. I am going to invest a couple bucks to change out the pickups. I am looking for a tone like John Mayer. Any suggestions? Active or Passive? Which Brand?

http://www.guitarcenter.com/Fender-American-Special-Mahogany-Stratocaster-HSS-Electric-Guitar-511165-i1168160.gc

Thanks!
#2
Budget?
See if you can find a pair of Fender Big Dippers; they're the pickups Fender developed with Mayer and the ones in his signature model. Failing that, I reccomend these:
1: If you have a high budget, try Bare Knuckles. The Apache would probably nail a Mayer tone.
2: Lindy Fralins are great and very vintage sounding.

And if you have a problem in tone it's probably your amp. What do you have?
#3
I have a Marshall AVT50XT I have a distortion and a Cry Baby pedal but I can't remember the brands right now. I am away on buisness so I can figure it out in a month. My budget is around $500 for my tone quest. Thanks a lot I will look into those. I have only played for about a year so I am still learning amp adjustments.
#4
First, Mahogany probably wont be great for John's tone, but im not really sure. It tends to be extremely bassy and warm, and depending on what you want exactly, Mahogany may hinder your tone. The basics of his tone are pretty much a scooped-out mid section, class A/B Fender amps, and a Strat. If you cant find Big Dippers on eBay, i doubt they are sold by themselves, try a good set of GFS Strat pickups, especially if you are on a budget. The "Premium II" Alnico II set is supposed to be a great vintage blues set, with tones like John's. But you may want to switch out your pickguard, so you can put a single-coil in the bridge.

EDIT: Sorry this is so long, but an AVT is really doing nothing for you tonally, especially with the guitar you have. Before you buy pickups, at least demo your guitar on a Fender amp like a DeVille maybe, and see if that doesnt get you closer than your AVT does.
Last edited by qotsa1998 at Dec 14, 2008,
#5
John Mayers neck pickup is based on a '62 strat pickup. His middle pickup is an overwound '62 strat pickup. The bridge is the only thing that isn't based on vintage pickups but he almost never uses his bridge.

If you can find the big dipper on ebay you could go that rout but they are expensive because they have never been put up for sale on their own. The only way to get them is taking them of a JM sig guitar. The real fender ones aren't hand wound anyway so they really aren't as good as the pickups JM really uses so you would be better off going boutique anyway.

You can always get the pickups from me. A 62 neck, CEW middle and Swingin' Warm bridge. It's my most popular pickup combination and it just happens to be very similar the pickups in John Mayer's guitar.

Othe good options would be a combination of frailin pickups. In the neck you would need a vintage hot with a 5% overwind. In the middle you will want the bridge version of his vintage hot with a 5% underwind. In the bridge get the blues special.

BKP might be able to work up a custom set but he doesn't have any standard sets that will do what you need.

Or you could always check out other boutique pickups winders. I'd stay away from all the bargin pickup makers such as GFS. It is important that your neck and bridge pickups use formvar wire but the bargin brands don't use formvar.
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#6
Once again, Cord ends the thread...


But seriously, listen to him. He knows exactly what he's talking about.
#7
EMGs... affordable(somewhat) and they have the least noise of any other pickups
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#8
Quote by CorduroyEW
John Mayers neck pickup is based on a '62 strat pickup. His middle pickup is an overwound '62 strat pickup. The bridge is the only thing that isn't based on vintage pickups but he almost never uses his bridge.

If you can find the big dipper on ebay you could go that rout but they are expensive because they have never been put up for sale on their own. The only way to get them is taking them of a JM sig guitar. The real fender ones aren't hand wound anyway so they really aren't as good as the pickups JM really uses so you would be better off going boutique anyway.

You can always get the pickups from me. A 62 neck, CEW middle and Swingin' Warm bridge. It's my most popular pickup combination and it just happens to be very similar the pickups in John Mayer's guitar.

Othe good options would be a combination of frailin pickups. In the neck you would need a vintage hot with a 5% overwind. In the middle you will want the bridge version of his vintage hot with a 5% underwind. In the bridge get the blues special.

BKP might be able to work up a custom set but he doesn't have any standard sets that will do what you need.

Or you could always check out other boutique pickups winders. I'd stay away from all the bargin pickup makers such as GFS. It is important that your neck and bridge pickups use formvar wire but the bargin brands don't use formvar.


http://store.guitarfetish.com/19repralstpi.html

these have formvar wire, and they're only 60 dollars. GFS has quite good sounding pickups, i would try them if i were you.
Last edited by Chad11491 at Dec 14, 2008,
#9
Quote by GODhimself37
EMGs... affordable(somewhat) and they have the least noise of any other pickups


wat
Gear
Fender Thinline Telecaster Deluxe

1983 Aria Pro II XX Deluxe Flying V

2007 S101 EGU34

1963 Kay Vanguard

1964 Kay Vanguard

AXL Badwater SRO

Hondo Strat

1974 Acoustic(brand) 134 4x10 combo

Epiphone Valve Jr.
#10
Quote by Gonzerelli
I am looking for a tone like John Mayer
Quote by GODhimself37
EMGs... affordable(somewhat) and they have the least noise of any other pickups
Quote by chuckflan333
wat


'nuff said.
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#11
http://www.bg-pups.com/sc.html
bg pickups has some nice single coils that are made to emulate that early 60's sound. i have some and they sound absolutly fantastic. cord is also a good person to get pickups from. everyone ive talked to that has worked with him has had nothing but good things to say.

however, with the $500 you have you could probably get a better amp. in fact, sell your avt and get a better amp first. the amp you use is going to have a larger effect on your tone than pickups. good pickups are nice, but the amp is more important.
#12
Alright I saw a set of the JM Pickups on ebay for $550. What I can tell from everyone here the amp is more important than the pickups. I am in Lithuania right now but there is a music store down the road. I am going to go check out some amps. As far as settings on the amp what should I go for? Any brand in particular? I will see if they have Fender amps. I am sure they have Marshall and Orange. Thanks a lot.
#13
Quote by Chad11491
http://store.guitarfetish.com/19repralstpi.html

these have formvar wire, and they're only 60 dollars. GFS has quite good sounding pickups, i would try them if i were you.



That webpage is very misleading and is simply jam packed with every catch phrase used in the pickup making world. Read it again and you will see that he doesn't use formvar he uses "Accurate 42 gauge Formvar plain enamel wire"

Where he says accurate he should say imitation. When GFS is using a cheap alternative they use the word "accurate" and then they use the title of the good product. In this case they couldn't decide if they wanted us to think they were using PE or Forvar so they mixed both into one product, however, there is no such thing as formvar plain enamel wire It's not real! There is formvar wire and there is Plain enamel wire. They are to different things and there tonal character are opposites which means it would be impossible to accurately simulate both in 1 pickup.
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#14
Quote by CorduroyEW
You can always get the pickups from me. A 62 neck, CEW middle and Swingin' Warm bridge. It's my most popular pickup combination and it just happens to be very similar the pickups in John Mayer's guitar.

I want.
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