string height, amp, overdrive, pickups ???

Discussion in 'Lessons & Techniques' started by acdc54_caddy62, Feb 21, 2006.

  1. 1Way

    1Way Active Member

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2004
    Messages:
    2,310
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    negotiable
    post 2of2
    Muzak
    Cascading or re-amping. You take a line out from your amp which probably requires a modest mod to your amp, then you would need another amp for that signal to then be amplified to any volume you would like! Set your first amp (master) to whatever sounds best, then adjust the clean (slave) amp to simply control how loud that signal is. Two problems, I’m not sure, but I think line outs are not all created equal, and I believe they hold similar tonal issues as power attenuation so some EQing may also be required to preserve your tone better. Secondly, you need another amp that tends to be clean, like a PA for example.

    You can use two guitar amps, but then each amp would tend to color the sound, so if you prefer your amp’s sonic character, then it’s a matter of creating a good quality line out, running that into a mixer, or PA, or clean amp, and have that drive “guitar speakers”, not PA speakers unless you have a cab emulator involved. For example, playing a guitar into a hifi stereo system especially without effects sounds really bad, hence the importance of choosing the right “guitar” speaker compliment for your rig. At least one power attenuator sports a decent line out (Weber MASS for example).

    Acoustic attenuation The idea is to let the amp be too loud to achieve power tube saturation, then put a something like blankets or a box over the speakers. Some have faced there cab directly to the floor, probably put a blanket or protective foam down first. They make isolation booths or cabs, but those are usually made for studio recording and not for live performance and can be very bulky. Still, one guy put his speakers inside a double or triple cardboard box for home practice in an apartment with great success. The downside is that if you require a good speaker to pickup interconnect, I know I do for things like singing sustain and pinched harmonics, this approach is not so good. If all you need is power tube overdrive, which is very cool, and you don’t mind missing the highs, then this might be fine for practice but looks out of place for live performance. :lol: You can cut out small holes in the front to let more of the highs out while still retaining most of the lows. Some experimentation may apply.

    Lastly, using more than one device or approach may improve your results as various trade offs are to be expected. Sorry to hear about your back situation, but on the upside, knowledge and understanding is good, especially at an earlier age like yourself. I have not yet been officially diagnosed yet, but one x-ray from a chiropractors visit rendered the immediate comment, you have scoliosis. I looked, and wow, my spin is more like an “S” than a straight line, and my side view curve is even worse (not in the x-ray). Don’t worry about learning this all at once, just keeping these things in mind puts you ahead of the game! So, are you in a working band, or just starting up?
     
  2. 1Way

    1Way Active Member

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2004
    Messages:
    2,310
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    negotiable
    Man, am I a talking fool or what? ;D I really enjoy these topics and I hope this could be of some help. I went to some length and am happy to do more because I believe (at some point) this issue is of interest to many guitarists. It’s great being able to preserve your own best tone for any size venue setting. There are other good ideas I’m sure. I have researched this for a few years, and these are my general findings that lend toward my taste and goals. And I’d like to clarify that I have no substantial experience using these approaches except some acoustic deadening, and some brief contact with a power attenuator, so this is all second hand information from both players and manufacturers. I put a premium on a guitarist’s opinion verses the salesperson. :coolsmiley:
     
  3. muzak

    muzak Member

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2006
    Messages:
    204
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Dallas
    wow, thanks...that was lots of info :lol:

    i think the Power attenuators are going to be my best bet. first, i would like to take my amp in to get 'biased' (did i spell that correctly?) because i have now idea how long it has been since it has, and maybe talk to him about one of those. that was very helpful to me and i hope you dont see your time as being wasted on all that typing.

    i never knew any of that existed...again, thanks.
     
  4. 1Way

    1Way Active Member

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2004
    Messages:
    2,310
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    negotiable
    muzak, it is my pleasure. But I probably should have started another thread, to keep from high jacking this one. It is my experience that some people can be quite down on power attenuators, like my local amp repair technician/amp builder for example. :lol: I mentioned that I was interested in using a power attenuator and :o he really dislikes the idea. >:( For example, for some reason, and this may be more a thing of the past, not sure, but Marshall amps seemed to have a problem frying up transformers from power attenuator use. On the other hand, Marshall sells there own power attenuator called the Power Brake! In recent times, I’ve heard plenty of satisfied power attenuator users, so apparently it’s not all that troublesome.

    The main point being that using an attenuator can lead to problems with your amp especially if it’s not well suited to it, especially if it’s used too heavily. Transformers are probably the most expensive part of an amp. Most amps have such important parts well spec’ed with sufficient variance for safety cushion, but there’s no guarantee and most amps are not designed to be used with an attenuator, while some amps have an attenuator built in.

    If you go that rout, you’d do well to reduce the likeliness of problems by having it professionally checked before using it hard. Specifically, (1) the ohms needs to be checked to help ensure proper working conditions, and (2) moderate use is perhaps considerably more safe than heavy use, in terms of volume reduction. I would not put the attenuator to max quiet and a stock amp to max volume and play like that for any extended period of time. Rather, I would find the lowest volume setting on the amp that you find is tasty enough for your power tubes, and set the attenuator to a moderate setting.

    I want to stress that it’s important to not raise your master volume any higher than need be to get the sound you like out of the power section of your amp, and use the power attenuator in the loudest possible setting to keep from altering your tone as much and to help keep from frying your amp. That plus checking the ohms by a competent tech should give you the best chances toward success.
     
  5. Stareater

    Stareater Active Member

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2006
    Messages:
    1,089
    Likes Received:
    0
    From what I recall reading, Angus had a pretty simple but loud setup. He ran his SG straight into 100-watt Marshall model 1959 Super Lead heads. Rock guitarists generally cranked them to get their tone, in big part from the overdriven power amp tubes, but in the early days Angus never had a heavily distorted sound. I get the impression that he pretty much just plugged in and found a comfortable volume. I always found his distortion rather meek.
     
  6. Zeppelin Rules

    Zeppelin Rules Active Member

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2005
    Messages:
    6,889
    Likes Received:
    30
    Location:
    Toronto, Ontario, Canada
    Apparently he never liked the sound of a cranked amp and so he usually turned it up halfway.
     
  7. If You Want Blood

    If You Want Blood Active Member

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2005
    Messages:
    2,453
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    CA
    which is coincidentally where i have mine. it depends what im playing.
     
  8. Stareater

    Stareater Active Member

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2006
    Messages:
    1,089
    Likes Received:
    0
    I recall, now that I think about it, that somebody claimed Angus' settings were around 5 or 6 on the volume. It was on the Metropolous website (he makes boutique replicas of old Marshalls), I believe. That sounds about right, as he didn't get that full-cranked sound. It's a pretty straightforward Marshall/Gibson tone.
     
  9. 1Way

    1Way Active Member

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2004
    Messages:
    2,310
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    negotiable
    All that is pretty much what I've heard too, but I've also heard his live setup is different from studio. Seems like he likes those old JTM45's for studio, and I think I've heard super leads for live. Likely a mix depending. I'm not familiar with exactly how it is that a guitarist like Angus amplifies for an 80,000 plus crowd, but seems to me that some serious sound reinforcement applies. Still, his guitar sound is almost strangely clean compared to many. When I hear Angus, I hear the SG instead of so much overprocessing... Angus ROCKS!
     
  10. SGBrian

    SGBrian Member

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2005
    Messages:
    321
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Columbus, IN
    There is some serious sound reinforcement going on for an 80,000 seat show (also on down to venues of 500+). The days of need more volume- slave another amp are long gone. The general rule of thumb nowdays is to mic the players favorite amp/cab unit and run it through the board. Which then goes through some serious power amps (500,000+ watts of PA system amps is not unusual for a stadium show). Then it goes through all of the PA cabs you see stacked on the sides of the stage, Hanging from the rigging trusses, and in the case of an 80,000 seat stadium delay towers. If you are really interested in learning about the techniques used for live sound, find a copy of the Yamaha Sound Reinforcement Handbook. It's what I had as the textbook in audio engineering school for live sound.

    I saw Dokken in '86 and George Lynch had six Marshall stacks on stage; but when I checked out his set up through my binoculars he had a two speaker combo amp mic'ed behind the stacks that was what went through the PA. The stacks were just for show. I've since learned that is a common practice :o.
     
  11. Stareater

    Stareater Active Member

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2006
    Messages:
    1,089
    Likes Received:
    0
    Judas Priest used to do the same thing. Those walls of Marshalls on stage were just for show. I read that both Glenn & K.K. used, I believe, two 50-watt heads and two cabs each.

    He's also been quoted as saying that the reissue Super Lead heads sound just as good as his vintage ones. I'm pretty sure he also said he takes the reissues on the road because he's afraid of theft or damage to his old Marshalls.
     
  12. 1Way

    1Way Active Member

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2004
    Messages:
    2,310
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    negotiable
    SGBrian, cool info. On a similar note, I was chatting with a Bose guy who was setting up that skinny tower PA deal at the local GC one day. I was interested in the technology side of things. He said that in concert arenas, they commonly use (side view) “J” shaped speaker cabs that utilize/emphasize a disk(?) shaped sound wave pattern (I think there’s a better term), instead of a less efficient/effective “spherical” one. I uh, have never been to a live concert, so I was at a loss for being able to relate. Do you understand what he is referring to?

    The concept is certainly cool and the Bose system seems like a good implementation of this idea. If I recall correctly, at 30’ away, the Bose speaker system is twice(!) as loud as a standard PA setup with the same volume at the speakers on each unit! So the sound wave is more concentrated to the area you want it to go. I think the sound wave travels faster too, but not sure about that.

    I’ve learned that volume/sound problems makes some clubs very upset with how many band handle this issue. But I also hear that the bass guitarist (and not quite as much for the drums) are least benefited by the Bose system because there simply is not enough powerful low end available. I would really like to understand this phenomenon better so that when I become a successful performer (at least I can dream) this info should help encourage return requests.
     
  13. SGBrian

    SGBrian Member

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2005
    Messages:
    321
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Columbus, IN
    First note that the Bose guy is trying to get you buy one of their PA systems. I have no experience with the Bose system and everything I post is based on that. I only know what my web research combined with with my real world experience leads me to believe.
    J- shaped speaker cabs- true. The flown and stacked cabs on each side of the stage, along with delay towers are shaped like a J to give maximum coverage of the audience.
    As far as the disk shaped sound wave, I think you were BS'ed. A sphere is a ball, a disk is the same shape in one dimension. Compare a fisbee to a ball. They are both circular as the same basic shape. I don't get what he was referring to because a sound wave, is a wave, is a wave, is a wave no matter what the source is. The only thing I think he was referring to was to get you buy the Bose PA.
    From what I found at the Bose web site, they are trying to eliminate the monitor and PA systems by combining them into one onstage system.
    I'll post more on this when I have more time.
     
  14. 1Way

    1Way Active Member

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2004
    Messages:
    2,310
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    negotiable
    Alright, hmmmm, maybe I'll have to throw away the demo DVD that went to great length about the shape and sonic benefits of the unique sound wave their system supposedly produces, along with what the Bose guy confirmed as well. However I am confident that if their claims are not accurate, they would be subject to heavy lawsuits from fraud via false advertising. And my ears confirmed the uniqueness of the sound wave, at relatively low volume, the sound seems to travel surprisingly well at various parts of the showroom floor and around the crowed isles and without much volume loss. Remember, Bose has been leading innovators in sound technology and their reputation seems trustworthy enough. But I am no sound engineer, by a far stretch...
     
  15. 1Way

    1Way Active Member

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2004
    Messages:
    2,310
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    negotiable
    Muzak, earlier were mentions about back problems. I just got wind of a unique guitar strap ("slider guitar strap") that is supposed to ergonomically spread the weight of the guitar evenly over three different parts with each area handling about 1/3 of the guitar’s weight. CLICK HERE FOR SLIDER GUITAR STRAP LINK.
    Thought you might be interested.
    8)
     
  16. muzak

    muzak Member

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2006
    Messages:
    204
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Dallas
    hey, thanks for keeping me in mind. right now w/ the sg and danelectro i use on stage, i dont have any problems, because they're both so light...which is why i went with the SG. i really only have problems when it's cold and/or weather changes. mine's arthritis in my spine....even though i'm only 23, had since i was about 19.
     

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice