Other Amps

Playing clean!

26

bold of you to assume that the only purpose of equipment is to "hear what your guitar/amp really sounds like." maybe folks want something different from their kit?

– macphisto

This is strange . This is not at all what I said.

Being a fellow who listens to a lot of music with heavily effected guitar and loves it I am not an sort of purist.

I never said or assumed anything about the 'only purpose of equipment' or anything like that in anyway. Not sure how that happened.

Here is what I actually said ,have fun with it, please though, note the 'At least In my opinion part'"

*You have to know how to play, and how to get a good basic sound out of your guitar through your amp. If you can establish both of those, then when you add the effects they sound that much better. At least in my opinion.

I can't say I've mastered any of it. I guess that's what makes it still interesting. *

I think you can hide behind effects (including distortion). That's my opinion too, and I like using effects and hearing others creative use of them.

I've always thought a good basic clean sound is a good place to start. Like how one often learns on an acoustic, which to me is a more demanding instrument than an electric guitar.

27

bold of you to assume that the only purpose of equipment is to "hear what your guitar/amp really sounds like." maybe folks want something different from their kit?

– macphisto

But in the context of demos (where this thread started), I'm one of those that does think that "hear[ing] what [the] guitar/amp really sounds like" is the purpose. But I play clean 99% of the time, so that's what I find most informative. I can see why people might want to also hear how a guitar or amp behaves with certain kinds of effects. But I do find it surprising how many demos skip clean altogether, or say they're playing "clean" and there's actually a pretty significant amount of overdrive. It seems like a sample of guitar's truly clean tones would be a useful reference point for just about anybody interested in a demo.

28

It seems like a sample of guitar's truly clean tones would be a useful reference point for just about anybody interested in a demo.

Demos are often market-driven, of course, so that tells you something too. One thing I have found though, is that if I were to record a clip of every single one of my guitars (all single coil-equipped, but ranging from strat/tele to full body 17" archtops) played by the same guy into the same very flat (EQ-wise), crisp-clean amp, you'd have a hard time telling them apart. (ask me how I know). Once you push the amp into even a little bit of natural overdrive and compression, the differences between the guitars become much more audible.

29

It seems like a sample of guitar's truly clean tones would be a useful reference point for just about anybody interested in a demo.

Demos are often market-driven, of course, so that tells you something too. One thing I have found though, is that if I were to record a clip of every single one of my guitars (all single coil-equipped, but ranging from strat/tele to full body 17" archtops) played by the same guy into the same very flat (EQ-wise), crisp-clean amp, you'd have a hard time telling them apart. (ask me how I know). Once you push the amp into even a little bit of natural overdrive and compression, the differences between the guitars become much more audible.

– WB

For me this wouldn't be the case as I almost never drive my amps into distortion so my ears aren't attuned to the subtleties other people pick up on. Like most avenues of experience one has to do it a lot for it to seem easy and or make sense, so I would find the opposite to be true.

What's interesting about this historically is that, primarily(and up to a point in time) the main goal of guitar amplification from a manufacturers/engineers standpoint was the accurate representation of clean sounds (of course often undermined by economics). Distortion characteristics would never have been a design factor.

Amps are always rated in wattage by how loud they can be before they start to distort.

Most of the engineers who designed these amps would be spinning in their graves. It's kind of funny. Not bad, just funny in retrospect.

I agree with Afire in that having a perfectly clean sample in a guitar demo (unless one is demoing distortion) gives one a good starting reference point, or at least another reference point depending on ones taste. It of course doesn't have to be the only sound.

30

I guess many guitarists in the 50s would have been familiar with distorted amp sounds. Big gymnasiums, large venues...small amps that were plenty loud at home or in the studio, but needed to be dimed in order to be gig worthy. And as mentioned, amp designers we're aiming for clean

31

I guess many guitarists in the 50s would have been familiar with distorted amp sounds. Big gymnasiums, large venues...small amps that were plenty loud at home or in the studio, but needed to be dimed in order to be gig worthy. And as mentioned, amp designers we're aiming for clean

– Vince_Ray

In the 50's and before that, I'd think every single performing guitarist would be familiar with what an amp sounds like when it's at least starting to distort - and the ones on the Rock and Roll and R&B side of the fence didn't mind one bit - a lot of blues and rock and roll guys were actively looking for it.

And amp designers were aiming for clean - but plug a P90 Gibson into a tweed Deluxe, and there's precious little squeaky clean to be had. Three quarters of the volume dial would be completely useless to someone aiming for clean clean. Even a lower output/narrower frequency range Fender guitar doesn't do that great a job of staying clean into a tweed Deluxe or one of those similar size Gibson amps.

32

I have always figured it's best to start with a good clean sound before adding pedals. If i ever get there, I'll let you know.


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