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Looking for the perfect tone.

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(@metallicaman)
Reputable Member
Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 314
Topic starter  

I know that there has been a million posts about tone, but heres another one.

I have been posting over the last few months about my amp and how its hard to get the Tone i want. I was looking around online and Ive come to the conclusion that Instead of buying RR's 2,300 dollar guitar or any of the high end guitars I will just put the same things that are on the High enders on my 500 Dollar Jackson. I was thinking about swapping my pick ups for seymour duncan jazz sh2 and sh4's. Basically I am trying to build and quote how much it should cost to build the perfect sound rig. I am in need of some opinions. Should I stick with my Behringer GMX 210 amp or go with a peavy or marshall? What types of pedals should i buy? Ive never used a wah wah before would that be a good addition? How about a mini cassett recorder by korg or something to record myself... Compression sustainers? Basically What types of equipment do i need to get a awesome whole sounding proffessional tone... Keep in mind i am not trying to impersonate anyone I am just tired of the 500 dollar duncan designed pick up little 200 dollar amp with 40 dollar foot pedal trying to tear up those zakk wylde and jimmy page solos. Also, Id like to stay under 500-600 bucks.... Thanks for all the opinions.. :?

Sing Me A Song Your a Singer, Do me a wrong, your a bringer of evil. - Dio


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(@rahul)
Famed Member
Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 2764
 

Try search 'quest for tone' or simply 'tone' in the search box , and it may help a lot as there have been lot earlier topics on this issue.

Luck ,

Rahul


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(@ignar-hillstrom)
Illustrious Member
Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 5384
 

Under 500 dollars=forget it.

In any case, it really depends on what your idea of perfect tone is. The GMX212 ain't that good in blues licks IMHO but it has a really awesome singing lead sound. Before you do anything try to figure out for yourself if this amp delivers what you need. If it doesn't you have basically two options to upgrade:

Better modeling: Vox Valvetronix, Line6 Flextone or PodXT/Boss GT8 with a poweramp.
Tube/Valves: tube-preamp, tube poweramp, attenuator, cab.

Effects you definitely want are:

-a booster pedal.
-a compressor/limiter.
-a 7band EQ for finetuning different channels on the amp.
-a global 31 band EQ.
-a noise gate if you go the tube route, digitals have it build in.

From what I gather I think you'll find your tone with your budget best with line6 equipment, they excel at high-gain sounds. Try the Flextone3 amp.


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(@rahul)
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Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 2764
 

What about getting a mixer ? Probably behringer.


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(@ignar-hillstrom)
Illustrious Member
Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 5384
 

A mixer is absolutely pointless in a guitar setup for anything but the most fancy stuff. The only times I use a mixer is when I want to fill the guitar track with multiple different sounds each panned to their own place in the stereo image (using a splitterbox into multiple pre-amps). But with a limited budget I don't think that's a usefull option here.


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(@kent_eh)
Noble Member
Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 1885
 

I'm still very much a newbie, so take my opinion for what it's worth. :?

I suppose the biggest question is "what is perfect tone, anyway". You kinda have to answer that before figureing out how to create it.

As you said, there have been countless discussions surounding this, and as far as I can tell, there is no one answer.

Something may sound great to my beginner's ears, and it sounds like poo to someone else.

Unfortunately, the easiest tone question to answer is "how do I get a sound like...(insert famous guitar hero here)".
Which is what you said you don't want.
Fair enough, but expect lots of opinions, and not a lot of simple truths. 'cause there isn't one simple answer to "how do I get perfect tone".

Sorry.

I wrapped a newspaper ’round my head
So I looked like I was deep


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(@simonhome-co-uk)
Honorable Member
Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 678
 

Well. First off, pickups dont neccessarily make a huge difference to tone. Are you looking for entirely different sound from your pickups, or just better quality? If your looking for say a warmer sound, then buying some appropriate pickups will help a lot. But if you want kinda the same sound but just say, a little more output and note definition then it may not be the best buy.
Unless you find an amp with your ideal tone, pedals are the way forward. Get an EQ pedal, to mold your EQ much much better. Get an overdrive pedal (maybe distortion, but I think overdrive would be better for RR, Led Zep etc). Bear in mind you need a great clean tone (again an EQ pedal helps here) otherwise any overdrivedistortion pedal will sound lousy running over a crappy clean channel.
Dont go cheap on your overdrivedistortion pedal. You get what u pay for. Dont just buy something cos "its menna be good". Think exactly what sort of tone you need and buy accordingly. You may wanna experiment with say an overdrive boosting a distortion pedal, giving a powerful sound with gr8 sustain.
I know i said get an overdrive, but check out this modded distortion pedal ( i got one it kicks a$$!)
http://www.robertkeeley.com/product.php?id=10
Despite the fact theres a Metal Zone pedal there, dont bother with I used to have one...the DS-1 Ultra can more than handle heavy metal n the tone is waaaay better. Your lookingb for something with a bit of trebly edge to it right? This pedal really has that perfect.
I also think a touch of reverb and delay really make the difference, getting a pro' sound


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(@metallicaman)
Reputable Member
Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 314
Topic starter  

ok well its time to go shoppin for some pedals..

Sing Me A Song Your a Singer, Do me a wrong, your a bringer of evil. - Dio


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(@ricochet)
Illustrious Member
Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 7850
 

I don't believe there is a "perfect tone." Those who search for it are doomed to wander aimlessly forever.

There are a whole lot of good tones, though, and you might as well use them and be happy. :D

"A cheerful heart is good medicine."


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(@metallicaman)
Reputable Member
Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 314
Topic starter  

Ok, Here is my list of pedals I found According to your guys' suggestions.

1. Seymour Duncan Pick-up booster- http://www.musiciansfriend.com/product/Guitar/Effects?sku=150710
2. Digitech Distortion Factory "seven Pedals in one" - http://www.musiciansfriend.com/product/Guitar/Effects?sku=150838
3. Arjens Suggestion- Boss 7 Band EQ http://www.musiciansfriend.com/product/Guitar/Effects?sku=151324
4. Seymour Duncan SH2, SH4 Jazz http://www.musiciansfriend.com/product/Guitar/Accessories?sku=300030

All at 405 bucks. Thats without the global 31 band, and the compression limiter. I looked at those items and There way to proffesional and mostly to expensive. Hopefully I can get a better sound with that new rig^

Sing Me A Song Your a Singer, Do me a wrong, your a bringer of evil. - Dio


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(@ignar-hillstrom)
Illustrious Member
Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 5384
 

Wow! I think (IMHO!!) you are heading in a totally wrong direction. I really, really, really don't think you will ever find your ideal sound in pedals: pedals are there to get the most out of the amp. I don't recommend the boss equalizer either: for a few bucks more Behringer has an excellent 31 band equalizer and for 4x less they have basically the same 7band EQ. With Boss you pay insanely much for a simple 7band EQ, nice if you perform daily but totally pointless for most of us. Compressors exist in rackform but also in pedals, every major brand has compressor pedals. (as cheap as <$20 and up to hundreds of dollars) The distortion factory might be nice, never tried it, but I really think you might want to look at your amp for the basic sound. I've never heared anyone ever get a great sound by pumping pedals through a clean channel: the overdrive pedals should add to the basic character of the amp. I'm not saying you shouldn't do this but really, think about it.

The first question should be: is your amp delivering the basic tone you're after. If not, get a different amp. If it does, write a list of what things need to be changed and why. Then make a list of gear that adresses each and every problem you have with your setup.


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(@dcarroll)
Estimable Member
Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 216
 

MetallicaMan WHOAH!!! Stop...don't buy any pedals man right now man...

first you need to figure out what type of sound you want...What type of tone do you imagine yourself having? What do you hear in your head?

I know you like Randy Rhoads. Now I think randy used some effects like a MXR distortion and such. His solos on his studio albums were doubled tracked to make them sound bigger. He plugged into marshall stacks.

But have you ever seen video of him playing? He has such a beatiful picking technique. Clean, fast and articulate. His fretting hand was like a classical player. These two forms of his technique gave him such a cool tone, and a fast and clean sound.

So what im saying is, maybe you should find your own style + sound you want, then get the gear (effects). I believe randy would agree with this one.

My guitar teacher always told me this quote

"A 50 dollar pedal will not make you sound like a million bucks"

all the best,

dustin

I've been imitated so well I've heard people copy my mistakes.
- Jimi Hendrix


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(@greybeard)
Illustrious Member
Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 5899
 

IMO, you shouldn't try to emulate anyone's tone - you'll never quite get it right and be forever searching for that last little bit. Find your own sound, one that you like and are happy using. My advice is to keep your amp, for the moment and buy a small multi-fx pedal (get a used one off ebay) and use that to experiment with - find out what pedals you're going to need to create your sound. Only once you've got close, or better still, found your sound, go and buy the individual pedals - but one at a time, to let you integrate them with your current set up.
You could even take the multi fx and your guitar to a music shop and try them on several different amps.
Don't spend money in the hope of getting it right.

I started with nothing - and I've still got most of it left.
Did you know that the word "gullible" is not in any dictionary?
Greybeard's Pages
My Articles & Reviews on GN


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(@gnease)
Illustrious Member
Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 5058
 

It can be hard to believe, but the tone really does start at finger and hand technique. One may add effects, but the fundamental ADSR and timbre begin at the string and fretboard. Having a solid, reasonably well-playing guitar that fits the style (warm LP or semi, tight Tele, versatile Strat or super-Strat) and a good sounding companion amp are also fundamental. Then move on to effects. Pups? Rarely need to change those -- newbies and really anal pros tend to do it the most.

-=tension & release=-


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(@simonhome-co-uk)
Honorable Member
Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 678
 

Arjen has a point about amps. You have to have an amp with at least tone you think you could tweak with pedals to get the sound u want. Guess I take that for granting seeing as my Vox has such awsome tone. You cant just throw pedals at your amp n hope it sound amazing.
Also if you have a specfic tone in mind I wouldnt buy a muti distortion box. I have many types of distortion on my amp and since finding my ideal tone, I only use one of the 9 settings. Maybe you should look for that one sound.
I don't believe there is a "perfect tone." Those who search for it are doomed to wander aimlessly forever.

There are a whole lot of good tones, though, and you might as well use them and be happy. :D
Oh I dunno! :P For me Eric Johnson has the PERECT lead tone *drool* Funny thing is he's never happy with it


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