You can turn any guitar into a guitar synthesizer by installing the GK-3 guitar pickup. It sends the individual vibrations from each string to a GK-3 compatible device that processes the signal. The GK-3 complements the other pickups on your guitar so you can switch back and forth between a normal sound, a synthesized sound and a mix of the two. The Fender Telecaster is the workhorse of guitars. It is respected for its clean and twangy sound, and the GK-3 allows you to complement the natural Telecaster sound with all kinds of alternative sounds. The GK-3 is designed to fit most guitars, and it will fit the Telecaster as well.
Things You'll Need
- Drill (Optional)
Find the right space for the GK-3 pickup on your Telecaster. On the Telecaster the GK-3 has to be placed in front of the bridge pickup.The GK-3 is designed to sit between the bridge and the back of the bridge on most guitars. The bridge pickup on the Telecaster is angled, however, and this prevents the GK-3 from sitting behind the bridge pickup.
Check the space between the GK-3 and the strings. On a Telecaster the bridge and bridge pickup sit on a bridge plate. On some Telecasters this raises the GK-3 too high and there is not enough clearance for the strings. There are two options. You can remove the bridge plate or you can cut a rectangular hole that fits the GK-3. On other Telecasters the GK-3 fits fine, except it overhangs the bridge a little bit on the edges. In this case you can put shims under the edges. The GK 3 controller sits directly behind the bridge. The controller contains the controls and the input jack.
Attach the GK-3 to the guitar. The GK-3 comes with installation instructions and all the attachment parts that you need. There is one piece of double adhesive tape for the pickup and one piece for the controller. Simply apply the tape and position the pickup and controller on the guitar. This is intended to be temporary. It allows you to find the perfect spot for the pickup and controller before you mount them with screws. There is also a holder provided for the controller to make it more secure. The holder is a clamp that tightens the controller to the guitar body.
Secure the pickup and controller to the guitar with screws. You will do minimal damage to the guitar by drilling two small holes. The pickup is mounted with a 3x16 mm screw and the controller is mounted with a 3x20 mm screw. Once the pickup is secured you will need to balance the pickup to each of the strings. This is done by using an adjustment screw that is in the center of the pickup. Mounting the pickup permanently to the guitar makes the GK-3 more reliable and secure.
Robert Russell began writing online professionally in 2010. He holds a Ph.D. in philosophy and is currently working on a book project exploring the relationship between art, entertainment and culture. He is the guitar player for the nationally touring cajun/zydeco band Creole Stomp. Russell travels with his laptop and writes many of his articles on the road between gigs.