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Does an amp need reverb?

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(@shannon77)
Eminent Member
Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 24
Topic starter  

When I was choosing an amp to buy, the salesman showed me one with reverb on it and one without reverb. I asked him to explain reverb and then I would know if I needed it or not. He just said that basically it's the amount of time it takes for the sound to bounce off the walls and come back again. My husband said I didn't need it. He didn't know what it meant either and plus it was more expensive. That's why he said that.
I still didn't understand the purpose of reverb. I'm thinking that maybe reverb just allows the sound to ring/last alot longer than it would if you didn't have it. Is that right? Or is reverb something else?
Shannon

Salvation is the best gift that exists and it's free.


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 Taso
(@taso)
Famed Member
Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 2852
 

Reverb is more like a slight echo effect. It can make for much nicer sounds, but it depends on what you are looking for in your music. I'd recomend going back to the store and messing around with the reverb settings to see if you like them.

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(@thectrain)
Estimable Member
Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 126
 

The best way i can describe reverb would be like the salesman said as an echo caused by the sound bouncing off the walls. It is usually a slight echo but I know on my amp when it is at max reverb it is a pretty strong echo and it makes it sound pretty muddy. It makes the sound a little softer but in my opinion it is not really needed. I am a fan of letting the room produce natural reverb and letting the amp make a crisper sound. The best thing to do is to try out the amp with reverb on and see if you like the sound.


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(@shannon77)
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Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 24
Topic starter  

Okay. I understand now. Well what is it that makes the sound ring super long?

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(@fiberoptik)
Trusted Member
Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 86
 

I love the reverb on my amp, it gives the tone a nice airy feel to it. I play mostly in a small carpeted room so there is no chance of natural reverb. There are a few different types of reverb.. One of them being actuall spring and it sounds great, the other is just a digital effect which can sound great as well. Most solid state amps these days have effects built right in and reverb is one of them.
Reverb is one of those tough things to explain.. Imagine being in a large tiled room and screaming when you stop you can still hear the scream, but its not quite a full echo.
But more importantly choose an amp that sounds good clean. If it happens to be a "no effect" amp you can always add pedals later. Most of us here have been through piles of amps so if you tell us what your looking for and what youve looked at we can probably give you a few pointers.


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 sirN
(@sirn)
Reputable Member
Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 361
 

You may want to consider what your goal is with an amp. Do you want to record some songs? Do you want to play live in front of a few people? Are you just looking for a practice amp?

If you are basically just looking for a practice amp, then you really don't need anything but an amp, a cord and an instrument. If you plan on playing a small venue, then possibly some reverb will come in handy. Recording may call for a bit as well. However, many recording artists go with a seperate reverb and effects. It all depends, so check it out and consider what you want to do.

To make a sound ring super long - sustain.

Delay is an effect that will 'bounce' the sound back at you with a certain amount of delay set by you. Which could be set to sound somewhat like sustain depending on your setting.

check out my website for good recording/playing info


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(@cyranodb)
Estimable Member
Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 178
 

...and even some of the most inexpensive solid state amps come with reverb and distortion already. I got a fender frontman 25 for about $100 and it has reverb and a distortion channel. Depends what you need it for.

"I use heavy strings, tune low, play hard and floor it. Floor it, that's a technical term." - SRV


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(@greybeard)
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Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 5899
 

You don't NEED reverb.

A small amount will just take the flatness (not sharp/flat, "lift", if you like) out of your playing. Listen to Dido - she sings totally dry - not a hint of reverb . Go into a bathroom and sing - it is much softer (i.e. less hard, not quieter), because you are getting a small amount of reverb from the hard surfaces generally found in bathrooms.

When you go to the guitar shop, play a short piece without any reverb at all and then play the same piece with a little reverb.

I started with nothing - and I've still got most of it left.
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(@shannon77)
Eminent Member
Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 24
Topic starter  

I only needed the amp for practice. I may get one with reverb down the road. :wink: Shannon

Salvation is the best gift that exists and it's free.


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(@danlasley)
Noble Member
Joined: 13 years ago
Posts: 2135
 

I strongly recommend getting the reverb option, even "just for practice". It helps to smooth over your chord changes, and the extra depth really improves the overall sound. As noted above, it shouldn't cost much extra.

-Laz


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 sirN
(@sirn)
Reputable Member
Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 361
 

I'm not sure if you are playing an electric guitar or an acoustic with a pick on it. But there may be a couple other things to consider. If you are playing an electric guitar, you may want to consider dumping the amp idea and going with a modeling effects unit like th Pod or Vox or VAmp or any of the others. If they are within your price range, they generally offer tons of great sounds plus a headphone out. The good thing is that they'll still be there for you if you reach the level of playing live or recording. But they are definately wonderful for practicing at ALL hours since they have headphone outs. Another nice thing about them is that most (maybe all?) have inout that will allow you to bring in music to practice to. Just a thought.

check out my website for good recording/playing info


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(@ignar-hillstrom)
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Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 5384
 

Hear hear, SirN speaks the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth!

If you really have to go for an amp, and you';re playing electric, I'd go for an amp with reverb, or an amp without reverb and a reverb pedal. The earth wouldn't be the same without reverb...

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(@alexduller)
Trusted Member
Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 58
 

the best explanation for reverb that i can think of is...'imagine playing in a huge room, like a cathedral' thats what an amp with reverb will sound like. As greybeard said you don't need reverb its a matter of personal choice...But if you've got about £20-30 (dunno how much that is in $) then you might as well go for the reverb option....take a look at amps with chorus effects...another gd sound to look at

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(@bmxdude)
Estimable Member
Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 119
 

What kind of amp are you looking at :?: I have a Vox ad30w amp, it cost about $237 and comes with eleven effects built in.

"The answer is practice.
Now, what's the question?"
Words by David Mead.


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(@bmxdude)
Estimable Member
Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 119
 

P.S. It also comes with a bypass button to turn all the effects off, And the effects include reverb.

"The answer is practice.
Now, what's the question?"
Words by David Mead.


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