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What does the Fender S1 Switch Do?

What does the Fender S1 Switch Do?

What does the Fender S1 Switch do? Check out this little guide on the S1 switch and find out what tonal options you can gain from it.

 

What does the Fender S1 Switch do? A common question we hear at GigGear, and to be fair, it's certainly not obvious. Fundamentally, the S1 Switch adds tonal versatility to whatever guitar it is fitted into.

Ok, so what is the S1 Switch? Well, it's that little switch that is set into a Volume (or sometimes Tone) knob on a selection of Fender guitars. Thanks to its discreet placing, the S1 switch doesn't significantly alter the appearance of the instrument it is fitted into, which is good news! What the S1 Switch does though is where things get a little more complicated (in a good way!), and will vary from guitar to guitar.

The Fender American Elite Guitars all feature S1 Switching.

Lets have a look at the switching options provided across a selection of popular Fender guitars: 

 

Fender American Elite Stratocaster (this is identical to the now discontinued American Deluxe Strats):

S1 switch OFF - the American Elite Strat functions as normal:

  • Position one: bridge pickup only
  • Position two: bridge and middle pickups wired in parallel
  • Position three: middle pickup only
  • Position four: middle and neck pickups wired in parallel
  • Position five: neck pickup only

S1 Switch ON - you get 5 more tonal options:

  • Position one: all three pickups wired in series
  • Position two: bridge and middle pickups wired in series
  • Position three: middle and neck pickups wired in series
  • Position four: bridge and neck pickups wired out of phase, with a special tone capacitor
  • Position five: bridge and middle pickups wired in series and out of phase, in parallel with neck pickup

 

Fender American Elite Telecaster (this is identical to the now discontinued American Deluxe Teles):

S1 switch OFF - the American Elite Tele functions as normal:

  • Position one: bridge pickup only
  • Position two: bridge and neck pickups in parallel
  • Position three: neck pickup only

S1 switch ON - the American Elite Tele functions as normal bar the middle position:

  • Position one: bridge pickup only
  • Position two: bridge and neck pickups in series (delivering a fatter tone)
  • Position three: neck pickup only

 

Fender Classic Player Baja Telecaster:

S1 switch OFF - the Baja functions as normal with an additional 4th position option:

  • Position one: bridge pickup only
  • Position two: bridge and neck pickups in parallel
  • Position three: neck pickup only
  • Position four: neck and bridge pickups in series (delivering a fatter tone)

S1 Switch ON - you get 2 more tonal options:

  • Position one: bridge pickup only
  • Position two: bridge and neck pickups in parallel and out of phase (thinner / hollower tone)
  • Position three: neck pickup only
  • Position four: neck and bridge pickups in series and out of phase (thinner / hollower tone)

 

I hope this answers some of the questions regarding S1 switching and what it actually does on some popular models with the S-1 Switch fitted.

 

 

Articles
29th March 2016
Fender Shop Fender
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