Let’s talk HS Filtertrons

Discussion in 'THE Gretsch Discussion Forum' started by calebaaron666, Dec 9, 2019.

  1. j.s.c

    j.s.c Country Gent

    Aug 19, 2008
    When I bought a Rhh few years ago, it came with TVJ and I also had a set of old HS filters in my drawers. I was happy with TVJ first, ... but I ended playing this guitar less and less. Then I decided to swap TVJ for the old HS... it quickly returned to its "favorite" statut !

    Thus when I had to sell this babe, the TVJ has returned inside for the great joy of the buyer ... and me, keeping my precious HS pickups.

    To be 100% honest, I tried many HS filters (old ones, before 2005) and they wasn't consistant at all. They are sounding all quite different to experts' ears (with some goods some bads and some very muddy). Thus, yes you can find nice textured HS but "at your own risk" where TVJ is delivering what you would have expected from a big filtertron.
    larryb, G5422T and calebaaron666 like this.
  2. swivel

    swivel Country Gent

    May 13, 2018
    The one time I swapped HS Trons for TVJ I heard absolutely no difference in sound. I think if you are going to swap because you want something to sound different, go for one of TVJ great offerings that IS different.
    Outlaw, new6659 and calebaaron666 like this.
  3. calebaaron666

    calebaaron666 Country Gent

    Aug 15, 2018
    Portland, Maine
    It’s interesting to me that you put HS’s in your RHH. Those are such hot models. Sorry you had to sell it.

    I do like TVJ pickups, and I would definitely put them in another guitar, but not this Falcon. It’s a 2004, a year after Fender took over. I’m not sure what that means for my guitar, but I’m happy with tone regardless.
    new6659 and G5422T like this.
  4. MKunie

    MKunie Synchromatic

    Feb 8, 2012
    My New Anni has them and My Setzer has Classics. I really don't like the classics at all, They are way too bright for me, I tried and tried, but once I got the anni? I love the FT,I may even switch the Classics for them one day
    G5422T and calebaaron666 like this.
  5. JC higgy

    JC higgy Friend of Fred

    Jun 6, 2008
    Belfast Norn Iron
    I like all the different flavors all the different pickups bring to the table.
    That's why i'm keeping the Black Tops in my Electro,they sound different.

    I have a 2003 Falcon and a 2008 Gent with HS Filter's and they sound great to me.
    larryb, new6659, T Bone and 3 others like this.
  6. sleeperNY

    sleeperNY Gretschie

    Jun 18, 2008
    central NY
    I have a 2003 6122-58 with HS filters in it and I was once told by another guitar that it was the best sounding guitar he had ever heard. I think is right up there. I must say we were playing an outside benefit and I was using a Fender Twin Custom 15 with a Korg AX3000g with just a hint of delay and reverb set at 5 on the volume using the normal channel. It did sound great that day.

    larryb likes this.
  7. TV the Wired Turtle

    TV the Wired Turtle Gretschified

    Jul 25, 2009
    so cal
    when you compare hs filtertrons to Ray Butts filtertrons, then we'll talk. You'll like them so much you'd slap your momma
    Tony65x55 and T Bone like this.
  8. T Bone

    T Bone Country Gent

    I really want to try some of those.

    Maybe a swap for the Setzer Sigs in my Hot Rod? Maybe not, after all it is a Setzer Signature guitar. A bit bright overall for me, but that's part of why I bought the Detroit Casket (tone controls). Guess I may have to get another Gretsch at some point. Do the Ray Butts come in any guitar other than Smoke?
  9. calebaaron666

    calebaaron666 Country Gent

    Aug 15, 2018
    Portland, Maine
    Man, I’d love to. Serious.
    I’m just not going to invest almost $400 in a guitar that already sounds incredible. If the HS Trons weren’t doing the trick, I wouldn’t hesitate for a minute to replace them.
    I certainly want to rock some of Butts off someday. I think I’d love to sample them in a 6120.
    TV the Wired Turtle and new6659 like this.
  10. HypotenusLuvTriangle

    HypotenusLuvTriangle Country Gent

    Oct 27, 2010
    Whittier, Ca
    I have a dream... if I ever get my Jackson Mahogany King V Pro or Randy Rhoads Pro, I will put my HSFTs into it them that I pull out of my G7593 Falcon for the TVJ DuoTrons i ordered.

    can you imagine these shred monsters with the Gretsch sound?! Closest I’ll ever get to a neck thru 24 fret Gretsch with a Floyd Rose.
    D8AC7502-ADEF-4CAB-8BE4-5188F917363B.jpeg 260A98F7-8539-430F-A12E-ABF5914E97B5.jpeg
    new6659 likes this.
  11. GAMBLER1234

    GAMBLER1234 Gretschie

    Jan 18, 2018
    Henderson Nevada
    It's an old and very true maxim. Don't fix what ain't broke.

    Last edited: Dec 10, 2019
    Dave-B, Trash Kidd, dak55 and 6 others like this.
  12. ZackyDog

    ZackyDog Friend of Fred

    Feb 6, 2015
    In the USA
    I've owned both; the neck pickups sound pretty comparable to me, though the both pickups on with the TV Classics sound too trebly to me. I am guessing that it is due to the wider bridge pole spacing.

    If you're persuing a vintage Filtertron (4.0k ohms, regular/standard pole spacing) sound, I would use two(2) neck pickups of either the HS Filtertrons or TV Classics.

  13. TV the Wired Turtle

    TV the Wired Turtle Gretschified

    Jul 25, 2009
    so cal
    the reason is that tvjones uses vintage correct metallurgy on the pole screws, he uses vintage correct thickness on the pickup covers, and the proper ration of alum., nickel, and cobalt on the alnico bar mag as well as the spec thickness of that magnet. The stock HS filtertrons dont hold those tolerances or tight ratios of construction mediums. Doesnt mean they are not nice pickups, they are..but if you are going to compare tangerines to tangelos, you gotta pay attention to the citrus whence it all came from :) Its simple fruit science. ..and, and dont bring up Pomelos and minneolas.
    T Bone likes this.
  14. G5422T

    G5422T Country Gent

    May 24, 2012
    Have any of you folks "depotted" your HS's?

    IIRC, a few have. I would like to hear about how they did it. Covers on or off ?
    Outlaw and ZackyDog like this.
  15. ZackyDog

    ZackyDog Friend of Fred

    Feb 6, 2015
    In the USA
    In the end, I let my ears be the judge. And I've owned an original 1962 G6120 for comparison. The latest neck HS Filtetron, employed in the neck and bridge positions, sounds close enough for me. And I maintain that TV Jones classic bridge pickup is too trebly/hot-rod (for my taste), probably because of the wider pole spacing and it's wound hotter (4.8k ohms, versus a vintage spec Filtertron 4.ok +/- ohms). One man's apples-to-oranges/pineapples-to-coconuts/strawberries-to-raspberries/peaches-to-pears, is another's apples to apples. ;)

    You don't think Gretsch used at least some (if not most/all) of their vintage formula when they recreated the Filtertron? It sure sounds (and reads/looks) like it, at least to me.
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2019
    G5422T likes this.
  16. ZackyDog

    ZackyDog Friend of Fred

    Feb 6, 2015
    In the USA
    I did (with a hair dryer). It sounds less "stiff" and more "open", for lack of better words.
    Outlaw and G5422T like this.
  17. G5422T

    G5422T Country Gent

    May 24, 2012
    Thanks. Did you remove the covers to do this?
    ZackyDog likes this.
  18. ZackyDog

    ZackyDog Friend of Fred

    Feb 6, 2015
    In the USA
    De nada.
    Nope, I left them on but, it still removes most of the wax.
    G5422T likes this.
  19. Outlaw

    Outlaw Synchromatic

    Jul 13, 2011
    I've depotted mine with a hairdryer as well with great results, as ZackyDog said it really opens the sound up.
    I've had tv's and in a hollow body I think hs's sound fuller.
    MKunie, ZackyDog and G5422T like this.
  20. G5422T

    G5422T Country Gent

    May 24, 2012
    Thanks guys. Dumb question? When heating the pups up, do you let the wax drip out from the base plate side, pole piece side, both??
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