#1
Hi guys.

I don't usually ask for help with much but I'm looking for something relatively specific and would like other people's opinion on it:

I'm in the market for a telecaster. I don't want to spend much money but I will be changing the pickups in it to a bareknuckle Piledriver set.

The question is: what is the least amount of money I can spend before this becomes pointless? What is the cheapest tele I can buy where this set up is still worth it?
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#3
A used MIM tele would be what I would look for. If you want something even cheaper, look for a used Squier CV tele. My buddy has one, and it's a great guitar for the money
#4
The cheapest one I would personally recommend is the Mexican Baja Tele.
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#6
Fender Standard. The 'better' Squiers are nice for what they are, but half their point is that they come with nicer pickups that other guitars of the same price, and if you're hell-bent on changing the pickups anyway then the Squiers have nothing to offer. The better Fenders also are sold on their electronics and hardware; the bodies and necks are the same in the Standards as they are in the Deluxe, Classic and Classic Player lines.

If you really want to get the most out of boutique pickups, use an American Special or any MIJ Tele; if you simply want the most guitar for your money, MIM Fender Standard.

By the way, Axesrus makes a set of pickups virtually identical to the BP Piledriver set, and to my ears - I've A/Bd them directly - I can't tell the difference with distortion and though the BKPs are slightly brighter and typically Tele-like clean, I wouldn't say it's worth an extra fifty quid per pickup. Also, it wouldn't be a post from me if I didn't pimp at-the-creamery.co.uk, a slightly cheaper, more personal and frankly, better, outfit than Bare Knuckle. Lastly I'd add that with Teleaster pickups, there isn't much that boutique manufacture adds. It's not like a humbucker where changing the balance between coils can have a large effect on the tone. A 13k A5 Tele pickup made by one company sounds 99% the same as a 13k A5 Tele pickup made by any other; give the usual Seymour Duncan and DiMarzio a look, because they can give you the same results as Bare Knuckle for less.
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#7
Quote by MrFlibble
If you really want to get the most out of boutique pickups, use an American Special or any MIJ Tele; if you simply want the most guitar for your money, MIM Fender Standard.
^ This. Although I wouldn't discount the Squier CV series either. Mr.Flibble is right that they come with better pickups than similarly priced guitars. But I also like the neck shape on the CV series better than the MIM standards. The MIM necks are too fat for me. But everybody's different so you'd need to go to Guitar Center and fondle both to decide for yourself...
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#8
Quote by zl1288
A used MIM tele would be what I would look for. If you want something even cheaper, look for a used Squier CV tele. My buddy has one, and it's a great guitar PERIOD.

FTFY

If you look at the specs, the CV's are higher quality than the MIMs. TS, don't heisitate to go squier if you want something good for cheap. If you can do to spend a bit more, go with a fender from one of the series (player, blacktop and such) you get a better value from them than from the MIM standards; but really, you can't go wrong with any of the current production fender/squier teles, even the affinities are better quality than they used to be.
#9
Tele's sound great because the design is great, you don't have to drop so much cash just to upgrade the pups on a guitar you don't have yet..
#10
Quote by ekomouse
Tele's sound great because the design is great, you don't have to drop so much cash just to upgrade the pups on a guitar you don't have yet..


I want something with a hotter, more modern sound than most teles have.

Many thanks to others for the recs though, especially MrFlibble; great info as always!
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#11
Does anyone have an opinion on the Vintage tele copies? I've heard good things about what they make in general but I don't know if that's just "for the price", if you see what I mean...
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#12
Tradition guitars is a Fort Worth, Texas company that builds their guitars at 3 price levels covering several models- their entry level Standard guitars are made in Indonesia, while the Pro and Classic lines are made in Korea. Tele bodied guitars are available in all three lines.

They sell through retailers, but sell directly to the public at reduced prices (put one in your cart to see the discount- usually about $200).

I know a few people who have them and they like 'em.

http://traditionguitars.com/guitars/index.html
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#13
Vintage guitars = Squiers with a cheaper price tag. Great if you want a bargain basement cheap thrills, not great if you're banking on buying a premium set of pickups and want wood to match.
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#14
Quote by Zaphod_Beeblebr
Does anyone have an opinion on the Vintage tele copies? I've heard good things about what they make in general but I don't know if that's just "for the price", if you see what I mean...

i haven't actually tried one of their teles, but if their other models are anything to go by, it is generally "for the price".

of course, that doesn't necessarily mean they are bad guitars. i consider things like the vintage icon series and squier classic vibes to be acceptable workhorse guitars for people on a budget. they do the job well enough, imo.
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#15
Quote by MrFlibble
Vintage guitars = Squiers with a cheaper price tag. Great if you want a bargain basement cheap thrills, not great if you're banking on buying a premium set of pickups and want wood to match.


Quote by Blompcube
i haven't actually tried one of their teles, but if their other models are anything to go by, it is generally "for the price".

of course, that doesn't necessarily mean they are bad guitars. i consider things like the vintage icon series and squier classic vibes to be acceptable workhorse guitars for people on a budget. they do the job well enough, imo.


Ok, given both of these and that I want a tele look with a very much modern sound... is there a pickup set you would recommend that would match what I'm looking for while keeping it within the general 'budget' area? Say a total of no more than £500 for example?
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#16
Lace Alumitones?

J. Backlund Designs used to use them for most if not all of their guitars, including the JBD-200, their take on the Tele:

http://www.jbacklund.com/jbd-200.html
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Last edited by dannyalcatraz at Dec 14, 2012,