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Post subject: Fender Enforcer Humbucker review
Posted: Sun Apr 14, 2019 3:18 pm
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I've been using the enforcer pickups in the bridge and neck position of my Mustang Pawnshop Special for quite a few years... Whenever I've looked online for reviews or discussions, there's not much in the way of description beyond "They're high gain" or "They're the hottest pickup that Fender ever made" or "Enforcers are just SD super distortion copies.

So for anyone looking to acquire a set of Enforcers, or just curious about what they actually sound like, here's what you need to know...

1. They're not super high-gain: They're definitely a hot pickup as you'd expect from a ceramic magnet with a whopping 24k DCR. However, in reality, they are not nearly as high output as an EMG 81, a Rail Hammer Chisel or the aforementioned SD distortion pickups. My test for how hot a pickup is depends on how easy/clear pinch harmonics are through a high gain amp or pedal. With the enforcer, the pinch harmonics at the 3rd fret are clear and loud but you have to dig in harder to create them than you do with typical high output humbuckers and the harmonics lack the sustain of other high output humbuckers.

2. They're VERY bright: Enforcers are very focused in the mid/high range... Especially the highs. If you're looking for a thick sounding humbucker, look somewhere else. There are very little lows in these pickups, creating a lot of sizzle and allowing the guitar to really cut through. I personally keep my tone rolled off to about 7, to tame some of the sharpness that these pickups have.

3. They clean up nicely: Rolling off the volume makes an unbelievable difference to the overall output and tone. Your guitar will go from screaming gain to soft cleans just by a small turn of the volume knob. I keep the volume at 10 at all times but for anyone who likes to use their volume knob to change the tone, you'll be amazed at the dynamics you can create.

That's about all I have to say about the Enforcer... By combing tight low-end and a massive mid/high frequency range with a high output ceramic magnet, Fender have basically created a pickup that is tailored to heavy-ish music, such as punk, noise-rock and possibly early 80's thrash metal styles. Due to its sharp attack, I'd say the Enforcer is also adequate for Black metal too. However, when it comes to modern brutal down-tuned metal, the Enforcer is not the pickup to use but I don't think that's what Fender had in mind for it anyway.

Overall, it's a pretty diverse decent pickup but it definitely has its flaws. I could see some gain-lovers finding them 'harsh' sounding with not quite enough output but others will appreciate the enforcer's ability to cut through a mix and clean up with the volume knob. I fall under the latter crowd but I'd still choose my Rail Hammer Chisel pickups (in my other guitar), any day of the week.


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Post subject: Re: Fender Enforcer Humbucker review
Posted: Tue Apr 30, 2019 4:42 am
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Thank you for the insight...surely drives a nail into the "I will never consider these pickups, ever" board on my Studio wall. :wink:

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Post subject: Re: Fender Enforcer Humbucker review
Posted: Sun May 19, 2019 8:44 am
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White Dog wrote:
Thank you for the insight...surely drives a nail into the "I will never consider these pickups, ever" board on my Studio wall. :wink:


+1

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