TV Classics vs Setzer Sigs


I’m sure this has been discussed here, but i wasn’t able to find much...

What are the thoughts out there about TV Classics vs Setzer Sig pick ups?

What are the characteristics that make them different?

From all the clips I’ve heard I think the Classics sounds better to me, but hard to tell from most YouTube clips.


Just my $0.02...

The Setzers have a little more mids- it's subtle. But especially the bridge (which is also a little hotter, and balances better with the neck than the Classic set does)

I think the Setzer bridge is better for the above reasons.

Both neck pickups are great, but I also prefer the Setzer neck... hard to say why, it's just sweeter.

So, overall, imo, the Setzers are the "ultimate Classics", I guess you could say... and that seems to be their intent as well. The final perfecting of the Filtertron "classic".


For once I disagree with Ruger! Well not with his findings but I prefer the Classics. Maybe it's just that I am used to them - and I'm surprised to find that I need time to adjust to something new - but when I tried the Sigs I found something weird in the mids I didn't like. They seemed a bit boomy in comparison or something. They weren't as precise sounding (sorry if that isn't helpful!) and sounded to me like something was missing.

I struggled to like them.


Like JimmyR, I prefer the classics. I actually put a classic plus in the bridge of my Black Falcon PE per Tom’s suggestion and really dig it. I may convert other guitars to this set up too. The Setzer’s had a mid bump I didn’t get along with.


I could see the slightly-thinner-sounding Classics being better on 6120s withOUT trestle bracing, but the Hot Rods don't quite have the low mids the full hollow/tone post models do, and the extra girth of the Setzers was helpful... and the extra bit of gain in the bridge. I could also see people who do the Chet thing liking the extra brightness of the Classics. Me, I'm not much fond of bright anything... which is likely why I have never married to "that Great Gretsch Sound" lol... when it comes to hollows/semis, my ears seem to be calibrated more Gibson...


I have a Classic Plus in my SSLVO which of course has trestle bracing. But I don't think the '59 VS Jet needs it - the regular Classic is so good in that guitar.

I love both Gibsons and Gretsches - I play my wonderful Les Paul and 335 a lot, and they definitely sound thicker than the Gretsches. The Les Paul in particular has so much low-mid punch and that's with lo-wind PAFs. The Jet is very different: far less sustain (!) and less low mids. But it is still very chunky sounding, just in a different way. I love how the lows stay much less compressed and twangy, and the Classics are a big part of that. The Les Paul is every bit as bright as the Jet but fuller in the low mids. The Les Paul is the classic rock sound but the Jet with Classics can do rock, surf, rockabilly, and pretty much everything I play!


some really good comments here!

I've been trying to compare pick ups and finally got to try an older hot rod with classics. i really like the top end of the classics and the bottom end of the Setzer sigs.

both pick ups are really good sounding. so many factors like different guitars and pick up height... but clearly great tones in either!


Yep, the various types of TV's can sound a little different in various Gretsches, based on body style, construction of the guitar, and the bracing style.

I like the Classics that I have, and also love the TV Ray Butts version too.

Setting them up correctly and fine tuning them in on the guitar, is a must do.

We're all just fortunate to have so many options available.

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