Hi guys,

This is something that has been bothering me for a LONG time. I can't crack that tele rock tone...

Here is my current setup:

Custom Shop 52 Tele (Hot Nocaster Abbys)

Vox AC30C2

Various Pedals - Vox Wah, OD-3, MXR Carbon Copy

Now clean blues is no problem, I can just run my tele straight through the Vox and it sings, but I can't achieve that overdrive sound... I run a 2013 Les Paul Standard through it for gigs at the moment which sounds amazing but there are a lot of songs I wish I had my tele for. Any advice on how to get that ZZtop, Led zep I or even Steve Cropper sound?

And no 'Just crank your amp' comments as my experience is this never works practically, I've owned various amps and 'Cranking' isn't the best way when trying to keep balanced.

Jump the channels and turn the channel volumes way up and the master down. Back off the channel volumes as you need to lower the distortion. Offset the channel volumes to dial in the treble/bass mix.

If that's not getting enough distortion for you, you probably need new preamp tubes (or listen closely to how much distortion you actually are using). The C2 has plenty on its own. Otherwise do same as above and goose it with the OD for a bit more grit, but Tele into AC30 shouldn't really need any help getting those sounds.
Thanks man. I'll take my tele next practise and just try and find that balance (It's hard in a small bedroom as it's so loud!)
Pretty good MV on those amps, I think you'll find you can get a decent grind even at low volumes if you keep the channel volume way high and the master low. Again, if the preamp tubes are old you may want to get some fresh ones. Good to have a set of spares around anyway.
Amps only a couple months old so should be okay. I just feel low volume pre amp OD is VERY different to high volume power amp OD. It's the latter I can never crack. I shall try what you said though.
Bridge pickup bridge pickup bridge pickup bridge pickup.
That + a bit of breakup from a class A EL84 power section + some bass + some more mids + high highs give me a convincing country tone.

If you feel like the highs get too ear piercing roll back the tone instead of the highs on the amp.
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fuzz pedal. a lot of zep is actually fuzz, i think (often with the guitar volume down a bit so it sounds more like an overdrive). ditto zz top (i think). dunno about steve cropper, not really familiar with him
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I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

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A tele is different. I even play it differently than my LP. I have a hard time getting weak tone though. That axe always delivers the goods. Std 2003 USA off the rack and it works with all my amps. OCD pedal in front if I need more gain.
"Your sound is in your hands as much as anything. It's the way you pick, and the way you hold the guitar, more than it is the amp or the guitar you use." -- Stevie Ray Vaughan

"Anybody can play. The note is only 20 percent. The attitude of the motherfucker who plays it is 80 percent." -- Miles Davis

Guthrie on tone: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zmohdG9lLqY
Quote by Dave_Mc
fuzz pedal. a lot of zep is actually fuzz, i think (often with the guitar volume down a bit so it sounds more like an overdrive). ditto zz top (i think). dunno about steve cropper, not really familiar with him

+1. I have the same sorta problem with tele's and my RM20 wBlackface module. Lately I've taken to using a fuzz pedal with the gain all the way down as a boost. It sounds remarkably unBig Muffish. Gives me a nice, fat, gritty tone.
Fender Mustang/Derfenstein DST> Boss Power Wah> Pedal Monsters Klone> Bogner Uberschall> Walrus Audio Janus> Randall RM20> Line 6 M9> Randall RM20
ZZ Top is a lot of gain IIRC, but he plays on very thin strings (7s I believe) and picks very lightly. The tone isn't that hard to replicate with "normal" strings and playing style, though. A fuzz never hurts to get in the ballpark, though.
i just plug a tele/ASAT into a music man or my brownface deluxe. killer tele tone
punk isn't dead, it's always smelled that way.

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