#1
So I've been playing guitar for quite some time but know very little about the insides of a guitar, wiring, etc...and I was thinking, what better way to learn then get a cheapy guitar and customize it a bit. So, my question is...would it work to get a cheap guitar (squire or epiphone special/jr), throw some decent pickups in it, and still have the guitar sound good? This may be more of a theoretical question...but any help would be greatly appreciated!
Thanks!!
ummmm........
#2
I think that an Agile is your best bet.
Epiphone Les Paul Ultra II(
"Epicaster" pimped out strat
Fender Blues Jr.
DeltaLab RD1 Rock distortion
Barber handmade USA Direct Drive Overdrive
DeltaLab Stereo chorus
MXR 6 band EQ
#3
Yes, that would most definitely work. Any decent guitar with a straight neck, respectable fret work, and a decent neck to body joint would be a perfect candidate.

Stereotypical, but yes, a Squire or maybe a Yamaha Pacifica would be a good idea. I've actually got a Squire with a better neck than a few ESP LTD guitars I've owned, the only real bummer with it is the pickups ( and all the electronics, really ) are crap and so are the tuners and bridge. So there you go, a guitar like that would be a great candidate for cutting your customizing teeth on.
#4
if a squier with replaced pups was as good as an american strat there'd be no market for american strats. its not a bad idea, especially if the guitar plays well, but with cheep guitars you won't get select woods so you won't get all the way there.
'59 Bassman Reissue
Custom Strat
Custom McCarty
Custom OM
Big Muff Pi
Dunlop Wah
#5
I actually just found out that my friend is getting rid of of a Behringer guitar...basically a POS...it's pretty crappy so do you think it's even worth investing time on this kind or would you recommend just going for something a slight bit higher end (my original ideas)?
Thanks again!!
ummmm........
#6
Quote by gazaa
if a squier with replaced pups was as good as an american strat there'd be no market for american strats. its not a bad idea, especially if the guitar plays well, but with cheep guitars you won't get select woods so you won't get all the way there.



Nobody said it would be as good as an American Strat, did you read that in his post? Did you read that in my post?


The man said he wanted to learn about guitars, not dominate the retail industry by replacing Squire pickups. A Squire with a straight neck would be a perfectly respectable guitar to get your customizing start on, and it will make a fine guitar with pretty good tone if you put in good pickups and have good technique.
#7
I have a Squire stratocaster,and all I did is go to my local guitar shop,fix up some electrical bugs,and replaced the strings with ernie ball extra slinky.
Its pretty good now,though I would like to get a real strat.
But I don't have the budget
#8
Quote by lumberjack
Nobody said it would be as good as an American Strat, did you read that in his post? Did you read that in my post?


The man said he wanted to learn about guitars, not dominate the retail industry by replacing Squire pickups. A Squire with a straight neck would be a perfectly respectable guitar to get your customizing start on, and it will make a fine guitar with pretty good tone if you put in good pickups and have good technique.
I also get what he is meaning though, he is saying that unless you spend a fair amount of money and hours and hours of work into it, it won't be as good as a US strat.

But I recommend getting a Yamaha Pacifica, just to be different.
I've played a few and to me they're better than any squier i've played.
I don't remember where I was,
When I realized life was a game.
The more seriously I took things,
The harder the rules became.
Last edited by WH15P3R at Nov 14, 2008,
#9
Quote by gazaa
if a squier with replaced pups was as good as an american strat there'd be no market for american strats. its not a bad idea, especially if the guitar plays well, but with cheep guitars you won't get select woods so you won't get all the way there.



Well, considering wood makes no difference to amplified tone, that post makes no sense.

If the guitar has a good neck, fretboard, and joint, the only difference between it and an American fender is hardware, electronics, and a $1000 logo.

There is a market for guitars that are good from the factory, not only because most people don't like to customize or don't know how, but Fender will always be a respected manufacturer of guitars.

I can buy a $60 000 corvette C6 and make it run circles around any $250 000 Lambo for a lot less than the $190 000 difference, the only ting is the effort and skill required to do so...

The same way I'm going to buy my buddy's squier for $50, and turn it into something better than anything I own now.

Sorry for that epic rant

To threadtsarter:

If your guitar has:

Nice neck
Nice frets
Nice joint

It can be turned into a good guitar for about $200 - $500, and a great one for less than $1000.
Enjoi <--- Friend me
Quote by Scowmoo
Otter, you're my new god.
#11
I replaced the pickups and tuners in my yamaha pacifica and it sounds about the same as one of my esp's, I like it a lot mainly cause it was my 1st guitar and I like the feel of the neck
Yamaha Pacifica 012 W/Emg 81
ESP EC400
ESP H202
Squier Tele Standard
Strat Copy
Randall RG100SC
Boss MT2
Boss TU2
#12
Quote by Øttər
Well, considering wood makes no difference to amplified tone, that post makes no sense.
Well, as much as respect your opinion I have to say that you're just jumping on the latest bandwagon...
All it takes is one person who has a small influence to say it and people take it as a fact.

If there wasn't a difference with woods, then why are the manufactures who make guitars out of MDF or Similar not as big of a brand as Gibson, ESP, Fender or even the smaller brands like Suhr?

Don't bother arguing, I probably won't read it.
I don't remember where I was,
When I realized life was a game.
The more seriously I took things,
The harder the rules became.
#13
Quote by hate&war
I replaced the pickups and tuners in my yamaha pacifica and it sounds about the same as one of my esp's, I like it a lot mainly cause it was my 1st guitar and I like the feel of the neck


LOL i love the neck on my epi spec II even tho i know it sucks, i guess its first guitar love.
#14
Quote by Øttər
Well, considering wood makes no difference to amplified tone, that post makes no sense.



I have to disagree. How can wood not affect tone? Different woods absorb different frequencies and therefore reduce the strings vibration, doesn't it. And if it wasn't true, then why do huge names spend money on quality wood?
#15
Be sure to stock up on Turd Polish:




You're much better off getting a reasonable guitar second hand, then modding that. Hell, if you're hellbent on buying a terrible guitar, at least get THAT second hand, and save a fortune.

Personally, I wouldn't waste the money on a cheap guitar that's made from an old IKEA desk, just for the sake of it. It might play like a dream in the end, but it will sound like ass if your tone is remotely pure - and decent pickups/amps will only highlight how bad it sounds.
#16
Quote by BucketHayden
LOL i love the neck on my epi spec II even tho i know it sucks, i guess its first guitar love.


Haha exactly my point, I'm most likley going to do the same to my Tele, mainly because it sounds absolutley horrible with any form of distortion. And also cause I like messing around with guitars. Even if some people think its pointless in putting anything decent onto a Squier haha.
Yamaha Pacifica 012 W/Emg 81
ESP EC400
ESP H202
Squier Tele Standard
Strat Copy
Randall RG100SC
Boss MT2
Boss TU2
#17
Quote by WH15P3R
Well, as much as respect your opinion I have to say that you're just jumping on the latest bandwagon...
All it takes is one person who has a small influence to say it and people take it as a fact.


If there wasn't a difference with woods, then why are the manufactures who make guitars out of MDF or Similar not as big of a brand as Gibson, ESP, Fender or even the smaller brands like Suhr?

Don't bother arguing, I probably won't read it.



Preach it, brother! Speak truth to power!

Har har, but yes, I totally agree with you. But for the sake of playing the devils advocate, lets not forget that the only reason big names like ESP, Fender, and Gibson make guitars out of select woods is because that's what people are interested in buying. If people were interested in buying guitars made out of particle board, that's what Gibson would be making. Let's not forget that just because those big names do something doesn't mean it's actually true or valid, it's just what people are wiling to buy is all. That might not be the case with smaller companies who are actually dedicated to the guitar, but it certainly is the case with massive corporations like Gibson who are dedicated to profit margins.

But yeah, wood matters. In those scientific tests it was empirically indicated that even when amplified, tone wood choices made a 10-15dB difference in the sound. That's good enough for me
#18
Hit eBay, Craigsslist, and Pawn shops before any guitar stores.

them be bargain lands, and you may find one that already has some mediocre-decent pickups installed.

I'm still on the edge on whether wood is a big factor in tone, so I'm not gonna fight anyone on that. Let us know what you find! =)
------

Shwiggity.
#19
Quote by gazaa
if a squier with replaced pups was as good as an american strat there'd be no market for american strats. its not a bad idea, especially if the guitar plays well, but with cheep guitars you won't get select woods so you won't get all the way there.



lol, dont get started on this crap. people buy american strats because it has "made in america" on it, they are the exact same guitars as the mexican ones, and coincidently made by the same people that have work visas from mexico. the only difference is the pickups, same crappy grade alder and "swamp ash". squiers are great guitars, but the electronics and fretwork is often pretty poor. i would buy a squier at a pawn shop and strip it and replace all of the parts. you can get them for like 50-100 bucks in decent condition.
#20
Quote by supergerbil
I have to disagree. How can wood not affect tone? Different woods absorb different frequencies and therefore reduce the strings vibration, doesn't it. And if it wasn't true, then why do huge names spend money on quality wood?



I shouldn't say it makes no difference.

I should that say that if it is alder, mahogany, korina, koa, walnut, agathis, whatever the **** wood you want to pick, you can still make a a good guitar out of it.

Would an alder strat and a mahogany strat sound different? Probably. Would it matter? Not in the least.

Provided your guitar is made of solid wood, then it can sound good.

And whoever was talking about jumping on the bandwagon? I've felt this way for years.
Enjoi <--- Friend me
Quote by Scowmoo
Otter, you're my new god.
#21
Quote by Øttər
I shouldn't say it makes no difference.

I should that say that if it is alder, mahogany, korina, koa, walnut, agathis, whatever the **** wood you want to pick, you can still make a a good guitar out of it.

Would an alder strat and a mahogany strat sound different? Probably. Would it matter? Not in the least.

Provided your guitar is made of solid wood, then it can sound good.

And whoever was talking about jumping on the bandwagon? I've felt this way for years.


I agree that you can make a good sounding guitar out of any material available.... if you pair it with decent electronics and decent construction.

As with many other things, the crafter is more important than the raw material. That's it.

Now, there are better materials to start with. Expensive woods are expensive for good reason. Yes, the Hit Rodded Vette may be driving circles around the Lambo, but if you spend some time on the Lambo it will drive circles around the modded Vette.

You'll have to spend more for gain little.... law of diminishing returns. But that doesn't erase the fact that the Lambo is still a better basis for modding over the Vette.

Same with tonewoods.

Though... if the TS can find a decently built Squire (I'd pick a Yamaha or Ibanez instead as even their chinese ones are much better than Mexican Strats and it hurts me to admit it as a mexican myself) then gut it and put it in decent order.

Yeah, you can get a second hand slightly better guitar.... but you'll want to mod it anyway and will spend more moeny for less gains as in the case of the Lambo V Vette thing.

Do you have enough with the modded Vette or want a Modded Lambo?
Ask that to yourself.

In my case, I got my Ibanez GRX20... It plays well, the neck and fretboard are very decent but it needs some work on the electronics (GFS Pcikups are already ordered) and I'll block the tremolo or plain replace it.

Yeah, it ain't a RG321... but it'll be very close and I'd dump the pickups on the 321 anyways...

It all depends on what you want. Be careful on the selections you make. If you're looking for fat tone, you'll be SOL on a Strat copy. If you want a bright sound out of your mahogany body-rosewood fretboard and you put DiMarzio Breeds then don't say the thing is crap because it sounds dark and bassy. It's just that you chose the wrong components.
Noob Grade Gear...
Ibanez GRX20 GFS Pups, Digitech RP3, Vox Satchurator, Behringer DD400 Delay, Danelectro Fish n Chips EQ, Behringer GMX110
Total lack of skills and not into broot4Lz anymore
#22
Quote by Øttər
And whoever was talking about jumping on the bandwagon? I've felt this way for years.

In your post before it sounded like you were saying that you could make a guitar out of paper mache and it would sound the same as a guitar made out of stainless steel.
But I have to agree that unless you're going for a specific sound, you can just got for any quality wood and it will sound decent.
I don't remember where I was,
When I realized life was a game.
The more seriously I took things,
The harder the rules became.
#23
as long as it feels comfortable to play, my all means upgrade everything. I wouldn't worry to much about the wood for your tone, most of your tone comes from the amp and the pickups.
amp>pickups>wood

Don't just upgrade everything with cheap stuff, get some sort of strong steel bridge, graphite nut, Locking tuners or tuners with a high ratio, Good quality pickpups etc etc.