"Stratocaster" is one of the most iconic names in the music world today, and for good reason. Ever since it first came out in 1954, this guitar has been a fixture on stages everywhere. It was originally designed for country music, but its amazing sound has led to its adoption for diverse musical styles including rock, pop, blues, jazz and more. Of course, an electric guitar's sound depends heavily on the components that drive it, so when you're looking to fine-tune the sound of your Strat, the pickups are going to be at the top of your list of things to look into.
Single-coil pickups have always been standard equipment on the Stratocaster, which is one reason why it's so good at producing the clear, bright sounds of country music and classic rock. These pickups are known for their slight hum, which gives your tone a timelessly vintage feel; and for their accuracy, allowing every nuance of your technical skill to be heard precisely the way you played it. The pickups used for the Strat have a reputation for brilliant, chiming sound, even in comparison to other single coils.
One of the most important characteristics that set any two pickups apart is the output level. Lower outputs offer the best clarity and produce open, melodic highs at any level of gain, while hotter outputs put the emphasis power and bass response in lieu of refinement. Each type has its strengths in different genres and playing styles, so it's up to you which output level is best for you.
You have plenty of options to choose from when deciding on pickups, ranging from '50s style models designed to authentically replicate the sound of the earliest Stratocasters all the way to modern pickups that use present-day building techniques to give the sound a more 21st-century feel. You can mix and match individual pickups to load each position with one that best responds to the sound produced at that point on the strings, or pick up a matched set of three to upgrade the whole guitar at once.
No matter which type of single-coil Strat guitar pickups you go with, as long as they give you the sound you're looking for, they're the right ones. Pickups are a subjective thing, so they're a very individual choice and finding your own tonal sweet spot is one of the perks of owning and playing a Stratocaster.