tex-mex pickups vs. texas specials.... your opinions??

Discussion in 'Stratocaster Discussion Forum' started by fast_frets, Aug 10, 2006.

  1. fast_frets

    fast_frets Strat-Talk Member

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    i just picked up a really nice Jimmie Vaughan relic'd strat that is just so cool. when i was looking for a new strat, i wanted one with texas special pickups, but this JV strat was so cool i just had to have it. can anyone tell me how much difference there is between the tex-mex pickups and the real texas specials? are the tex mex pickups just basically stock with a different name? i've thought about an upgrade to the texas special set, but i don't want to invest the money if there isn't much difference.... any thoughts??
     
  2. Strat-Talk

    Strat-Talk Administrator Staff Member

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    The Texas Specials are either liked or hated. Seems they have a loyal group of supporters and detracters. The JV Tex-Mex pickups are quite different and seem to be well liked by many folks.

    Folks talk about the Texas Specials being thick and gritty. While the Tex-Mex's are more bright sounding.

    If you haven't heard or played a guitar with the Texas Specials, I'd hold off and stay with the Tex-mex p'ups you've got until you do. Who knows, you may love 'em, but you may hate them too.

    They are not the same things with different names.
     
  3. Durockrolly

    Durockrolly Strat-Talk Member

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    Personally, I hate the Tex-Mex pick-ups. I use Texas Specials in a couple guitars. I play the blues and love the warmth they have. If you don't know, Henry Garza of Los Lonley Boys plays MIM Strats with Texas Specials.
     
  4. mutato

    mutato Senior Stratmaster

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    I played both back to back at GC about a month ago. Along with a 50's reissue Strat. Very cool comparisons. Then I played some others on another day to really get a feel for the pickups/models. Each were cool, and different. Here's my comments I saved for myself (thinking about replacing pickups myself). I put them in a top down order of Brightest to Darkest/hotter

    50’s Strat: Cleanest, lowest output. Closest sounding to my current strat. Super clean. Plinky sounding. Hard to dig into due to the excessive treble. Low on Bass volume.


    Players 60’s Strat: Played. Had a nice jangle, like there was less midrange than the 50’s style. Has the Custom Shop ’69 Pickups



    SRV Strat: Texas Specials PU's: Nice hotter sound while keeping the treble sounds intact. A happy medium.


    Jimmie Vaughan Mex Strat: TexMex PU's: Hottest sounding. Nice, but lacking little high end treble. Might be hard to get super clean sounds.

    Highway One Strat: Sounded similar to the Tex Mex PU’s (though the newer Highway ones might have changed the PU’s to be brighter) kind of dull.

    Hope this helps. You should play some to get a better idea yourself.

    Mutato
     
  5. rscornutt

    rscornutt Strat-Talk Member

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    I put Tex-Mex pups in my MIM 60s Strat. They were hotter than the stock pups and they start to break up sooner. The clean tones are not as clear, but they sure gave the MIM some snarl. I was happy with them.
     
  6. nvosmeier

    nvosmeier Strat-Talker

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    I have put both tex mex and texas specials in a couple of partscasters. I liked both of them, just different. If I had to choose one or the other, I would probably choose the texas specials.
     
  7. bobthecanadian

    bobthecanadian Strat-O-Master

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    For some reason I have thought that the main difference between these two pups was the output of the bridge pickup. Is this accurate?
     
  8. rscornutt

    rscornutt Strat-Talk Member

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    I believe the TS pups are hotter across the board then the Tex-Mex.
     
  9. bobthecanadian

    bobthecanadian Strat-O-Master

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    Shows ya how much I know!
     
  10. stringbender

    stringbender Strat-Talk Member

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    My 2 cents..Don't like them tex specials too sterile..stick with the tex mex..
     
  11. tazzboy

    tazzboy Strat-Talker

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    I try the Texas Special in SRV stratocaster they or Ok just not my cup of tea. I have try the Tex-Mex yet so I can't comment on that.