Strats‎ > ‎

Strat-X


Strat-X was inspired by the Fender S-1 switching pot. I wanted to have the standard 5 Strat pickup selection choices with the S-1 up and then have 5 different choices with the switch down - a total of 10 choices. Since everybody is using X instead of 10 these days, I called it Strat-X.

At first, I wanted the 5 new choices to include the 3 different in-series choices, plus the Tele middle position and all 3 pickups together.

After spending a little time with the original Strat-X, I decided I wanted all of choices of the 2nd bank of choices to be higher output sounds so that they matched better with each other. That resulted in Strat-X Version 2, or Strat-X2.

Then, I still wanted the Tele middle option, so I created the Strat-X Plus.




The Original Strat-X


10 unique choices.

The first 5 are standard Strat switching. Press the S-1 switch and you get 3 in-series choices plus the Tele middle position (Neck & Bridge in parallel) and all 3 pickups in parallel.

S-1 Up (Normal Strat):

1. Bridge
2. Middle & Bridge (Parallel)
3. Middle
4. Middle & Neck (Parallel)
5. Neck

S-1 Down:

1. Middle & Bridge in Series
2. Neck & Bridge (Parallel)
3. Neck & Bridge in Series
4. All 3 Pickups (Parallel)
5. Neck & Middle in Series



Click on the image below for a larger version.

Original Strat-X



Same as the above, but with the Schaller MegaSwitch M 5-way pickup selector switch.

S-1 Up (Normal Strat):

1. Bridge
2. Middle & Bridge (Parallel)
3. Middle
4. Middle & Neck (Parallel)
5. Neck

S-1 Down:

1. Middle & Bridge in Series
2. Neck & Bridge (Parallel)
3. Neck & Bridge in Series
4. All 3 Pickups (Parallel)
5. Neck & Middle in Series


Click on the image below for a larger version.

Strat-X with Schaller MegaSwtich





The Original Strat-X with a Modified TBX Tone Control



It's the same switching arrangement as the original Strat-X, but with a Fender TBX tone control pot that is wired for treble cut one way and bass cut the other (useful to brighten up the series combinations).

10 unique choices.

The first 5 are standard Strat switching. Press the S-1 switch and you get 3 in-series choices plus the Tele middle position (Neck & Bridge in parallel) and all 3 pickups in parallel.

S-1 Up (Normal Strat):

1. Bridge
2. Middle & Bridge (Parallel)
3. Middle
4. Middle & Neck (Parallel)
5. Neck

S-1 Down:

1. Middle & Bridge in Series
2. Neck & Bridge (Parallel)
3. Neck & Bridge in Series
4. All 3 Pickups (Parallel)
5. Neck & Middle in Series



Click on the image below for a larger version.

Original Strat-X with Modified TBX Tone Control




The Original Strat-X for an HSS Strat with a Push-Pull Tone Pot




Click on the image below for a larger version.

Original Strat-X for HSS Strat with Push-Pull Tone






This second version of the Strat-X gives you 5 fatter sounds when you press the S-1 switch and a Fender TBX tone control pot that is wired for treble cut one way and bass cut the other (useful to brighten up the series combinations). Then, it adds a dual concentric pot to blend in another pickup in a couple of positions. Ideally, the dual concentric pot would be a dual 1 Meg pot, but a dual 500K pot would work, too.


14 unique choices.

The first 5 are standard Strat switching. Press the S-1 switch and you get 3 in-series choices plus 2 series/parallel combinations that are similar to the standard Strat positions 2 & 4, but louder so they match the output of the series combinations. The Blend Pot adds 4 more choices.

S-1 Up (Normal Strat):

1. Bridge
2. Middle & Bridge (Parallel)
3. Middle
4. Middle & Neck (Parallel)
5. Neck

Blend Pot adds the Neck to Positions 1 & 2
Blend Pot adds the Bridge to Position 5

S-1 Down:

1. Middle & Bridge in Series
2. Middle & Bridge in Parallel with the Neck in Series
3. Neck & Bridge in Series
4. Middle & Neck in Parallel with the Bridge in Series
5. Neck & Middle in Series

Blend Pot adds the Neck to Position 1
Blend Pot adds the Bridge to Position 5


Click on the image below for a larger version.

Strat-X2 with Modified TBX Tone and Blend Pot





Strat-X2 with a Modified TBX Tone Control and Out-of-Phase Option

Then, I thought it would be interesting to add an Out-of-Phase option to Strat-X2. I really like having the Middle pickup on a Strat Half Out-of-Phase (reversing the wires & putting a cap in series) in the normal Positions 2 & 4 because it fattens up the tone of the two in-between Strat sounds. But, when the Middle pickup is in series with another pickup, the added cap makes the out-of-phase sound even thinner. So, this mod adds a DPDT toggle that will reverse the phase of the Middle pickup, but it will be Half Out-of-Phase when the S-1 switch is up (Normal Strat mode) and it will be straight Out-of-Phase when the S-1 switch is down.

Click on the image below for a larger version.

Strat-X2 with TBX and OoP