From the manufacturer:
High-output true single-coil pickup for hard-hitting tones. Great for classic rock, jazz-rock fusion, heavy rock and aggressive instrumental rock.
This brute has enough power to compete with humbuckers and hot P-90s. The stronger magnetic field of the quarter-inch diameter pole pieces increases the output and allows use of a special coil winding. It keeps the high-end definition for great treble bite and a full, powerful midrange. It's especially useful for overdriven tones. The STR-3 rhythm pickup matches the lead model in tone and output, but uses 3/16 pole pieces and comes with a chrome-plated brass cover.
Available for both rhythm (neck) and lead (bridge) positions.
For all well-balanced instruments. Works equally well with maple and rosewood fingerboards.
Both lead and rhythm versions available tapped for dual output levels.
Cesar Rosas / Los Lobos, Gwyn Ashton, Joshua Partington / Something Corporate, Michael Sweet / Stryper "
Best videos/sound clips:
Here's a video from Seymour Duncan that features the STL-3's high-output, fat sound being played by Steve Booke. At 0:11 into the video, the STL-3 is featured in a high gain rhythm context, pretty far from what we'd normally call a "Tele tone." Steve switches to the middle pickup, still in a high gain application at 0:36, so we get to hear how the STL-3 sounds when interacting with the neck pickup. The nice thing is that in this section we get to hear the guitar alone as the mix is turned down. Again in the middle position, at 1:30 we are treated to a clean, decidedly more "Telecaster" guitar sound. We also get to hear the guitar outside the mix, so we can hear the chime of the STL-3 when used with the neck pickup. At 1:42 we hear a rhythm being played using the bridge pickup alone, and later in the section, we hear the guitar by itself using this sound. Definitely more "Tele" here, but fatter, and with higher output. 2:22 is a medium gain middle position feature, and at 2:35, we hear the STL-3 alone with the same medium sound. It's nice and thick with more pronounced mids that I don't normally associate with a Tele bridge pickup.
This video features Rodney Gene using the STL-3 in a more traditionally Telecaster way. He starts with the STL-3 alone, at the very beginning, with some nice behind-the-nut bends. He is using a Fender Classic Player Tele through a compressor into a clean Peavey Delta Blues amplifier. The chicken pickin' section starts at 0:29, and you can hear how the STL-3 really retains its twangy "Tele-ness" while being higher output and richer than a standard Telecaster bridge pickup. At 1:55, he puts the pickup selector in the middle position and plays some nice bends and harmonics, taking full advantage of the STL-3's high and upper mid frequencies.
Here's a video by Belleville Paul showing us the versatility of the STR-3 and STL-3. This time, were in a more modern rock context, and played on a Fender Classic Player Baja Tele into Apple's Logic Pro X. After a nice little intro in the middle position, and the salute at 0:22, we hear the STL-3 with high gain playing big thick power chords, before falling away to a solo on the bridge pickup, from 0:35 until he switches to the STR-3 at 1:28 for the tune's chorus climax. At 1:42, we hear a section of unison bends with the STL-3 until the breakdown at 1:51. The breakdown is my favorite part of the tune. We can hear the STL-3 with a little space around it, and here it really reminds of the thickness and punch of a P-90. Good stuff from 3:00 to the end.
So here's Belleville Paul again with the STR-3 and STL-3 in a Pop/Punk application. The guitar is a Fender Classic Player Baja Tele. Again, these pickups are big and round, with a little less twang than regular Tele pickups. The guitar enters after a salute at 0:12, and it sounds huge. In fact, it reminds of Billie Joe Armstrong when he uses a Les Paul Junior with a P-90! There is some cool chord work in the verse of the song, starting at 0:23. At 2:08, there is a really nice double stop passage that lets us hear the way the STL-3 sounds in the upper register. He flips to the STR-3 at 2:18, and we hear how great the STR-3 sounds for solos. Then it's back to the STL-3 again for the last chorus at 2:53 to the end. Great player getting a great sound from the STR-3 and STL-3.
Here's a good pickup comparison video by jeffhermans showing the Seymour Duncan Quarter Pound bridge vs. the stock Fender Tele bridge pickup from his ash-bodied Fender American Standard tele. He is playing through a Dr. Z Maz 8 amp and uses two mics for this recording, a Shure SM 57 in the rear of the cab and a Heil PR20 in the front. He did use two slightly different tone knob settings on the guitar for each pickup (5 for stock and 7 for the SD STL-3).