Transensor by Lace Music Products

Equal to a vintage humbucker. I play through a ten-year-old BOSS GX-700 that still works as well as the day I bought it (knock on wood).  That goes through an Alesis stereo 31-band EQ (to correct the cabs), then into a Peavey PV900 power amp and finally into a pair of Peavey TSL112H P.A speakers.  I use a Roland FC-200 midi foot controller.  I went this route because I hate lugging heavy equipment around and because my musical style requires so much flexibility that to do it with tubes and rack gear would cost way more than I have. With 500K volume AND tone pots, TranSensors give you more frequency response than you need.  The bass is deeper (which is fine because it's tight) and the treble is out at the far, razor's edge of "glassy".  There's been some discussion here about controls.  You have to treat TranSensors as if they were humbuckers, because that's really what they are.  And if you have a humbucker on your guitar, you'll almost always need a 500K volume pot.  HOWEVER, I've found the TranSensors high end to be a bit shrill with 500K tone pots.  You _can_ mix pot, you know.  Try a 500K vol and 250K tones.  THEN, change the caps.  I don't know what possessed Fender to put .042mf caps on their tone controls.  The rolloff is way too low and when you turn down your tone control it just makes the sound muddy.  There are a couple other viable options, including the now-popular so-called "woman tone" cap - a very low-value cap that Clapton used when he was with Cream.  The high cutoff let him roll the twang out of his strat pickups while leaving the upper midrange.  Very sweet.  That will tame the excessive extreme-upper treble frequencies. These pickups work especially well with my guitar.  The Deluxe Plus has an alder body, the darkest sounding of the most commonly-used resonant tonewoods (along with poplar and basswood).  The fingerboard wood makes all the difference.  You can brighten the sound up and make it more balanced with a maple fingerboard or if, like myself, you like moodier players with darker tones like Robin Trower, David Gilmour and Ritchie Blackmore, a rosewood fingerboard might suit you better.  I like the darker tone but my guitar also has an ash top and back.  Ash has a shallow mid-scoop tone profile.  It lifts the low lows and the high highs.  The extra bass sounds fine and the extra treble gives the guitar a bit more articulation.  TranSensors have exactly the same effect and enhance this particular guitar's natural tone - always something to keep in mind. Tone-wise, the TranSensor is extraordinary.  Right off, if you're looking for a traditional, late-50's/early 60's bluesy vintage strat sound, this pickup isn't for you.  Through the clean channel, it sounds much closer to a 1969 Hendrix-era pickup or, with a little distortion, a 70's overwound "fat strat".  But the way the TranSensor responds to the amount of gain used and to playing dynamics is downright scary.  With a dynamic overdrive setting, as you increase the gain or dig in with the pick, the bass tightens up, the highs get reined in and the upper midrange fattens up like a darn P-90.  A P-90 with PAF-style harmonics!  It's a very modern sound that keeps its identity through a ton of processing and at high gain, gives me a nice smooth lead sound.  It'll give you Gilmour's "Another Brick In The Wall" clean sound as well as the solo from "Comfortably Numb".  It even sounds good through a fuzzy, searing Plexi model with a very hard pick attack like in "Purple Haze".  If you know how to use it, there isn't much the TranSensor can't do.  But it takes some getting used to.  It isn't hot or blistering enough to make a good metal pickup though, not surprisingly. I also did a little rewiring to suit my purposes and tweaked it a bit to find a sound that's definitely all-Strat and also all mine.  :) I play progressive rock with psychedelic, electronic and fusion influences.

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