#1
Hey guys

I've pretty much decided I'm going for Fender American standard Stratocaster. The thing is, I'd like the beauty to be able to pull off some higain lead stuff, chunky drop C riffs as well as some blues and old school rock.

So... The guitar I dream of, is vintage white standard USA Strat SSS. (Because they dont make HSS in this colour). I've got 3 options how to improve that guitar:


1: Changing SSS to HSS (Maybe It won't be "true" strat, but my own custom shop so minus and plus


2: Repainting a HSS one - I think it's the worst option because I'd probably lose some sound quality.


3: Single sized humbucker. But I bet it's going to be damn noisy on higain setting.


What do you think would be the most reasonable one? I realize it's all kind of a desacration of a legend, but I want >my< own instrument for years. I'm not really going to sell it, ever.

I play modern metal, but I'm kind of growing out of that music. I like 80's rock, and blues aswell. But still I want my Strat to able to play it at least as good as my cheapass 300$ usd Ibanez - wich is really AWESOME for metal, but it's low quality and It won't really last long. It'll be my support guitar, and the strat - main one.
#3
Personally I'd whack in a single coil sized humbucker; mainly because I don't like the way the HSS Strat looks; although a proper humbucker will give a nicer tone.

Don't bother refinishing though, that would just be daft on such a top end guitar.
#5
1: Changing SSS to HSS (Maybe It won't be "true" strat, but my own custom shop so minus and plus


that's the best one, anyway changing the color of a guitar doesn't mess up the sound it's just hard as hell to paint it so it stays solid the color it won't be soft as the original color so that's why i wouldn't repaint it xD.... and to do it well you would need to sand it i think.

3: Single sized humbucker. But I bet it's going to be damn noisy on higain setting.

i'm between the 1 and the 3... 'cause i don't think a single sized humbucker would be that noisy if it's a good one xD.... but yet i think you should go for option 1

(sorry for the huge post)
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#6
lol it really pizz me off i was looking for a HSS strat white too but i found a sunburst one awsome ^^ might buy one when i can
Living is a bless, most of the people just exist

i'm out of my mind, insane, and what i say is sht or doesn't make sense, still your reading this.
#7
I installed a Seymour Duncan HotRail in my strat and added a coil split to it. Now I can play everything I want.

The HotRail is not noisy at all. It gives you a very punchy and clear sound - suitable for everything from U2 to DevilDriver. It is a little bit trebly though, but that can be erased with a little eq'ing.
#8
Replacing pickups is much easier than doing a refinish, so I'd definitely go down that route.

So the choice then becomes between a single coil sized humbucker or a full sized humbucker and a new pickguard. The routing will be there for the body to take an HSH config, so that's not a problem.

Personally, I'd go for the full size humbucker because there's a much wider choice, therefore you're more likely to be able to get the tone you want. Single coil size humbuckers don't have a noise problem or anything like that, but there are fewer of them on the market, and a lot of people don't like their tone compared to their full size brethren. I can't comment on that, though, as I don't have anything with an SC sized humbucker in it.

Also, depending on what you get, several SC sized humbuckers are a less rounded on the ends than true SCs are, so if you got one you might have to file out the hole on the pickguard a bit. Not really a problem unless you think you might end up putting the regular SC back in, in which case you would notice the weird shaped hole.
#9
So you mean like... The stock 2011 Standard American Stratocaster has got the "pool" under the pickguard big enough to fit a fullsize humbucker?

So I don't have to cut anything? : O Just buy a new pickguard, right?
#10
lol if you buy a pickguard yes otherway you gotta cut your pickguard.

edit: i though you knew xD.....
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#11
Correct..Warmoth has some sexy aftermarket pickguards.....
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#12
My God, cheers then! I didn't really know that!

Becuase my budget is like 1500$, and Standard Strat is only around 1k, so I've got 5 hundred bucks left for pickguard and new humbuckers.


Ow one more thing... What do I need for active pickups to work together with passive in one guitar? Is it even possible?
#13
A battery.....I actually prefer passive pickups for rock/metal..but thats up to you.....the first thing you need to do is take the pickguard of and find out how its routed.....you may be able to do HSH...but I'm unfamiliar with American strats.....so idk....
Why actives and passives though? why not one or the other??
Quote by Pan-Tallica
Quote by jrcsgtpeppers
But theres no reason why i cant be free like a raspberry stuck to the back of a horny elephants ass.

This is maybe the worst comparison in the history of comparisons.
#14
I like the sound of the passive singles the Strat comes with, but for metal, I really liked the sound of EMG81/85 or something like that, it fits my present style, and when I'd switch to these singles I'd still be able to play light rock and glassy blues.
#16
ehhh......ok.....I realy have very little xp with Actives...but from what I know..you do need to make sure that you have room for the battery..and you may ant to get it routed for a battery cavity..so you dont have to take the pickguard off everytime you need to change the batery
Quote by Pan-Tallica
Quote by jrcsgtpeppers
But theres no reason why i cant be free like a raspberry stuck to the back of a horny elephants ass.

This is maybe the worst comparison in the history of comparisons.
#17
Ohh, if you play a bit of blues, the JR may not be the best choice then, lol.
#18
I've been considering the Jim Root Stratocaster. Sweet guitar, really! But the thing about her, is that she's wonderful for metal...

but I'd really love the single pickup there aswell for lighter tones. It kind of keeps the Stratocaster's soul and it's former idea inside it. I know that I'm trying to hit two birds with one stone, wich may be tough, but thats what the forums are for, asking for the best way how to do it

/cheers
#19
I thought USA strats were only routed for the pickups they come with, I think the Mexis are routed HSS whils Squires tend to be "swimming pool" routed - someone correct me if I'm wrong.
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#20
Quote by steven seagull
I thought USA strats were only routed for the pickups they come with, I think the Mexis are routed HSS whils Squires tend to be "swimming pool" routed - someone correct me if I'm wrong.


You're close. All Squiers are routed for humbuckers, usually a "swimming pool," but some newer ones are H-S-H. This is so they can use the same bodies for quite a few different types of guitar. Currently, almost all Fenders production models are H-S-H, with a few "swimming pools," mostly "Artist Series" and the "Deluxe Series", and a few S-S-S routed ones, mostly historical guitars like "Classic 50's" and "American Vintage". Fender Custom Shop Stratocasters are only routed for the pickups they come with, because they aren't intended to be modded. I'm not sure if Fender still uses a HSS rout.
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#21
Do the same thing Prince does: ditch the middle pickup and put an EMG SA in the neck and an EMG 81 in the bridge. Warmoth sells pickguards for this.
#22
The JR is ****ing awesome, its a real beast of a guitar and sounds absolutely huge.

If you play a few genres, its all in how you use the volume knob and the 60 is one of the nicest pups around IMO.

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#23
Will paiting the black humbucker (like emg's) hurt them? I mean, their colour doesn't really fit that white guitar colour, so, would the sound change or something?
#24
^for that, they actually have white versions of most(if not all) of EMG's pickups, so that would help keep the color combination a dominantly light shade. as for painting, no clue
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#25
Thank you, I didn't know that! White EMG's look really beautiful.

I'm considering on single pickup's aswell though,- as that setting might be cheaper and easier.

What single pickups would you recommend for metal?
Doesn't really matter if its singlesized humbucker. I just need that one bridge high gain pickup - on which the whole sound of my band will depend. I really rarely switch off the bridge, at least when I play metal.
#26
For Metal? EMG 81. Some people here seem to LOVE Bareknuckles, but I have never tried them.

EDIT: Anyway, I'd recommend to have a neck pickup, just in case you need it.
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#27
If your strat is routed for HSS, seriously check out an EMG 89/SA/SA set. I think it will be able to do everything you want it to with ease.
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#28
What aboout the batteries? Does the Standard Stratocasters have any space there under the pickguard to fit the batteries for 3 active pickups?
#29
just get yourself Lace Sensor pickups. the red,silver,blue set will do metal just fine and still retain the fender sound (to a reasonable degree). i have a blue inn the bridge of my Strat Plus (silver in neck and middle) which has worked out for metal for the styles i play. (see The Land Unknown in my profile for the range os sounds lace sensors can do) the red bridge pup is even hotter and best of all they are almost noiseless.
#30
Quote by Szneka
What aboout the batteries? Does the Standard Stratocasters have any space there under the pickguard to fit the batteries for 3 active pickups?


I'm sure there's plenty of space under that giant pickguard. It's a 9V battery... it's really not that hard to just stick in somewhere. It fits nicely in my control cavity in between my pots.
Spin 'round carousel when your horse isn't screwed in.

My band:
Fractured Instinct
(For fans of Death/Groove/Prog Metal)

Ibanez RGA42E
Ibanez S420
LTD H-301
Ibanez RG520
Peavey Predator USA
Douglas Grendel 725
Line 6 Pod HD500X
#31
ATM I'm considering either EMG81/SA/SA set vs Lace Sensor BlueSilverRed set.

Price seems to be very similar. I've got no idea which one would be better to be honest, but with Lace, I wouldn't really even have to change the pickguard.

But will the Lace red be able to pull off the things that 81 can? As for bridge metal lead settings.
#32
Quote by Szneka
ATM I'm considering either EMG81/SA/SA set vs Lace Sensor BlueSilverRed set.

Price seems to be very similar. I've got no idea which one would be better to be honest, but with Lace, I wouldn't really even have to change the pickguard.

But will the Lace red be able to pull off the things that 81 can? As for bridge metal lead settings.


the Lace Sensors won't sound like EMGs. they are designed to retain the basic strat sound but give you more balls and a wider frequency range. what they will do for you is give you some options style wise. EMGs are great for metal but fall short in other genres. the LSers will give you a decent metal sound but i wouldn't expect a total crushing death metal sound. i don't play modern downtuned metal so i don't have first hand experience with that however i do play metal and can get that with my strat (once again check The Land Unknown in my profile it's not a metal song per se but does have some metal style riffs in a couple parts)
#33
Get a fender deluxe player's strat (it's mim but it has the button to engage the bridge and neck pickups at the same time) and get a hsh pickgaurd and put an emg 81 in the bridge emg SA-X in the middle and an emg 60 in the neck
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#34
Honestly just put a SD Hot Rails or DM Tone Zone S or Super Distortion S in the bridge. No need for a new pickguard, no need to try to mix actives and passives which is a total bitch to do, no need to worry about routing. Any of those three pickups will do metal tones great and they're as quiet as any other humbucker is.

For the routing thing, I've got a MIM Deluxe Strat and that is not routed HSH, the neck routing is more like a mini bucker, a full humbucker would not fit in there but it's larger than the single coil needs. It's odd. I've opened up one Squier before and that did NOT have a swimming pool route though I forget which model it was. American Fenders are mostly routed only for whatever pickup config they came with or at least the Standard and vintage reissue ones are. Of course in some years all Strats were done with swimming pool routes, other times they all had only what they were supposed to have stock. Who knows what a 2011 MIA Standard SSS Strat will have? So you can not just assume that the body will already be routed for what you want, you won't know the routing you've got until you have bought the guitar. So don't bank on that stuff.
Last edited by grohl1987 at May 8, 2011,