Lace Sensor pickup question

Discussion in 'Pickup Forum' started by khan, Feb 4, 2020.

  1. khan

    khan Strat-O-Master

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    Based on what I've heard from Strat Pluses, I want to experiment with Lace Sensor pickups. I've got a build that's sort of my dedicated test bed. Can someone give me the lowdown as to the difference between the various Lace Sensor pickups? It's about impossible to find guitars with any set much less several to compare so, I'm putting my faith in what you guys can report. Red/Blue/Silver, Gold and Purple/Silver/Green. What's the distinction between the sound of each set.
    I generally cover a broad range of musics short of modern heavy metal.

    Thanks in advance!
     
  2. Mannie

    Mannie Strat-Talk Member

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    I have an 88 Strat Plus Gold sensors and it gives the classic Strat tones, strat quack in 2 and 4, classic chimes.
    I also have a Jeff Beck Strat withe the rainbow pack of lace sensors, and Strat plus wiring ( from a 92 plus). I prefer that tone right now, a little dirtier in all positions compared to gold sensors. Purple in bridge is great, blusey rock sound, silver classic full mid, and emerald neck SRV like tones.
    This is all clean tones in my ears
     
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  3. wrvond

    wrvond Senior Stratmaster

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    Red is invariably bridge, silver or gold are middle, blue or silver at the neck.
    If you figure gold is your middle of the road tone, you can go from there. Hot gold have a bit more output than plain gold. Red is like a Tex-Mex pup while silver and blue are similar to American Standard pups.
    I’ve never used the purple or green so can’t speak to them.
    I took the Laces out of all my guitars (except the Ultra of course) and installed ‘57/‘62s in two of them and American Series (alnico V) in two others. The Laces are nice but they lack the chime of the other pups.
     
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  4. Rudedawg

    Rudedawg Strat-Talker

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    I bought my American Special 2002 Highway 1 new and the oem p'ups that came in it were not Fender American according to a Fender tech plus they didn't do it for me; however they sound great in my MIK strat, go figure. Anyway for the majority of its life it has had Lace Hot Golds in it and I do like them. They clean up very well, the bridge chimes but can get ice picky on some amp/effects settings but adjusting the treble cures that. They sound good with moderate amp gain and do give that strat quack in positions 2&4, however the quack is more pronounced in #4. I hear others state Lace sensors sounded too sterile in their guitars but with all the tweaks/settings/effects I have on my amps I haven't really noticed that. I am not qualified to give you a tone comparison between all the sensors because I have not used or heard them. As was stated above the gold is the middle of the road and hot golds are just that, hotter. I have often wondered what my guitar would sound like with red, white & blue sensors or even quality Fender American p'ups in it but at my age I'll stick with these. Good luck.
     
  5. Tim S

    Tim S Strat-O-Master

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    I have a Red/Silver/Blue set in my Plus Deluxe. It’s very versatile and the Blue in the neck is great — but neither the Red or Blue sound like a Strat.

    I have the Purple/Silver/Emerald Rainbow pack in a hardtail. This set sounds like a Strat! The 2 & 4 positions sound fantastic (I wasn’t a fan of those positions before)
    The Emerald has a scooped sound while the Silver has a midrange bump (sorta loosely like Blackface vs Tweed). I never have much use for the bridge pickup but the Purple works nicely with the Silver for the 2 position.

    YMMV
     
  6. ido1957

    ido1957 Senior Stratmaster

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  7. Rudedawg

    Rudedawg Strat-Talker

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  8. Morf2540

    Morf2540 Senior Stratmaster

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    I have a 93 Strat Plus with lace sensors. I know some guys frown on them, but I love them. To me they sound warm, rich, and full. I have blue-gold-red. I live on that gold middle pickup, it's perfect.

    IMG_5238.JPG
     
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  9. scooteraz

    scooteraz Strat-O-Master

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    I have Hot Golds on a partscaster. They are the regular Hot Golds if Neck and Middle and the "hotter" Hot Gold for the bridge. See here: https://lacemusic.com/collections/7/products/lace-sensor-hot-gold-single-coil-pickup-3-pack-with-hot-bridge. They do a good job for my praise band music, and for my occasional forays into surf and roots rock, which covers the ground you are discussing. Because of an instructor I had some years ago, I built the guitar with a Floyd Rose (yes, you can use a Floyd for music other than thrash and metal) and the combination works surprisingly well. f Some folks don't like the hotter bridge, but I have few complaints.

    Overall, they do well with pedals, sound good plugged in direct both to the amp and through an Apogee One (or Jam +) to my laptop (when I want to practice silently) and overall have a variety of tones. However, if you are looking for somewhat more traditional strat tones in the Lace line, the Holy Grails may be better.

    OTOH, that guitar is not my number 1, but it is the guitar that travels with me when I am gone from home more that about 2 weeks at a time. My number 1 alternates between three (other) guitars. But, for some reason I do play that (Warmoth) partscaster a lot.
     
  10. Michael919

    Michael919 Senior Stratmaster

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    My 91 Plus has original “666” Golds. I swapped out the bridge for a Red for a while for higher gain stuff. I found it to be too icy picky and harsh and swapped it for a Dimarzio Chopper with a cover that matches the aged Laces nicely. I still love the Golds in the neck and middle.
     
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  11. Tim S

    Tim S Strat-O-Master

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  12. SurfsUp

    SurfsUp Senior Stratmaster

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    Lace Sensor's are my favorite pickups.
    I have a Red/Silver/Blue set in one Plus Deluxe
    A Blue/Silver/Silver set in another
    And have an older first gen set of Hot Golds that from time to time pop in and out of my 3rd Strat

    I LOVE the Silver in the middle. Perfect. The Blue in the neck is warm and mellow. So smooth. The Red screams pinch harmonics.

    The Blue in the bridge is completely different than the neck. It's great, but no way would I guess same pup in there. Obviously positions do matter!

    The Hot Golds are excellent too. I can't honestly see how "different" they can be at around 6K (mine anyway) from regular Golds, but hey ~ the claim to be hotter. My set are all 6K~ish....didn't opt for the 13k bridge.

    You can't go wrong!!
     
  13. Bettyfender

    Bettyfender Strat-Talk Member

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    I was leaning toward the rainbow pack (emerald/silver/purple) when I was thinking about upgrading my strat. But my luthier convinced me to go lace holy grail as his supplied has them in his strat and has been raving about them. He has and original 80's strat plus with golds in it he loves them. Long story short they are pretty comparable similar tone. But the holy grails have more chime/sparkle and more bite. Now he wants to change his guitar to the holy grails! I am really happy with them huge improvement over the stock 07+ hwy1 pickups. They are very straty and versatile sound good clean or over driven. Wails with a ts9 and gene Benz el diablo 100!
     
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  14. SurfsUp

    SurfsUp Senior Stratmaster

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    I've played Holy Grails and while nice pickups found them too "vintage" if you know what I mean. I prefer the slightly compressed smoother tone of the Sensor series.

    Now, albeit that was years ago and my tastes and playing style has since varied so who knows? Give em a go!
     
  15. Agtronic

    Agtronic Strat-O-Master

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    My father has a 1994 40th Anniversary Strat with Lace Sensors. I find that they sound pretty damn good. I played that guitar quite a bit years back, and I just always felt like they lacked the crispness of your standard single coils. For this reason I always felt like I was missing something when playing that guitar. They do sound fantastic with a high gain set up I have to say.
     
  16. fenderkev

    fenderkev Most Honored Senior Member Strat-Talk Supporter

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    I'm another who used 666 Golds in my '89 Strat Plus for over 20 years. They're definitely the most vintage sounding and in the middle and neck my favourite, although the Silvers and 6k Hot Golds come a close joint second. I've tried the Red, Silver, and Blue too. Agree the Red is for a Lace Sensor, surprisingly harsh in the bridge position at least. I found the Blue a little too mushy there, and too dark for the neck position. As I've said, Silver is great in all positions, but my favourite Sensor for the bridge is the Hot Gold 13.2k
     
  17. khan

    khan Strat-O-Master

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    Fantastic info folks. Thank you, so much. This gives me a lot of info to mull over. I really appreciate all of your input.
     
  18. Han Valen

    Han Valen Strat-Talk Member

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    this
     
  19. tinkertoy

    tinkertoy Strat-Talker

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    I have had the r/s/b set in a 90 strat plus deluxe. I really liked the red for gain. almost perfect for high gain strat sounds. the blue and silver were ok, though I think they would be better in my current rig. I sold that guitar 10 years ago. don't miss it.

    I had a hemibucker set with a hot gold middle in a warmoth hardtail strat. I liked the hot gold here. the hemis were ok at best.
    I replaced this setup with a set of holy grails thru a Clapton circuit and have finally found what I was really looking for.

    the holy grails lack that real single coil thing that noiseless cant replicate. this works great for gain, since the ratty single coil sound is gone. the midboost ( and the straight boost on the volume) take me from stratty to pretty close to the R/S/B set.

    the tbx tone pot can add some highs if you want. I do it all from the guitar!!

    oh, and NO TREBLE LOSS as the volume knob drops due to being active.
     
  20. khan

    khan Strat-O-Master

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    I read and listened and reread all of your comments, reviews, articles, youtubes and am just about ready to buy a set but then I came across this vid from Phil McKnight (Youtube guitar review cannel) and he really ripped on the company for having declined in quality. See the vid at about 11:20ish. Then I realized just about all of you are talking about Lace Sensors that are older. Now, I'm hesitant to lay down money on pickups I can't hear in advance and will be suspect/leery of what I might get. I dunno. Anybody bought you Lace Sensors w/in the last year or so (the McKnight vid is from 2018.