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Single String 'gurgling' With Distorted Sound?


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#1 MartinDorr

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Posted 10 October 2013 - 09:42 AM

Looking for cause. When using mid to high gain sounds I noticed by G string notes starting on about fret 10 and higher have a strong 'gurling' sound effect.

I am guessing at some resonance in the guitar mechanics or a faulty piezo as reasons, but really have no clue.

Sorry if this was discussed before. Tried a couple searches but could not find a hit.

Appreciate any advice on how to zero in what's broke or even better, a fix ;-)


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#2 arislaf

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Posted 10 October 2013 - 09:47 AM

For begin, let's limit the sources. When with the true pick ups you still hear it?


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Before line6 was called line6... they used to do r&d for other companies like alesis + others. and when those customers came to visit the offices of line6 (before it was called line6) and the receptionist needed to warn all the guys who were designing products for other companies (and for themselves... ) who were like 'in the back' the receptionist would announce over a tannoy 'tellephone call for 'fred smith' on line 6' the cunning part was that they only had 5 telephone lines, so it was the secret code for "hide your sh1t the feds are comin'" or "someone's coming, let's hide these PODs that we aren't going to release for another few years so they don't see them" 

 

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#3 MartinDorr

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Posted 10 October 2013 - 11:04 AM

Good point, haven't done that yet.

Should have thought a little more b4 posting ;-)

Thanks


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#4 arislaf

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Posted 10 October 2013 - 11:29 AM

Welcome, waiting your reply!


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Before line6 was called line6... they used to do r&d for other companies like alesis + others. and when those customers came to visit the offices of line6 (before it was called line6) and the receptionist needed to warn all the guys who were designing products for other companies (and for themselves... ) who were like 'in the back' the receptionist would announce over a tannoy 'tellephone call for 'fred smith' on line 6' the cunning part was that they only had 5 telephone lines, so it was the secret code for "hide your sh1t the feds are comin'" or "someone's coming, let's hide these PODs that we aren't going to release for another few years so they don't see them" 

 

BEST CABS: www.studiocat.com


#5 MartinDorr

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Posted 11 October 2013 - 08:06 PM

I tried (a re-tried to be sure)

* Variax piezo (worst)

* Variax mags (better but still there)

* Analog mags (better and better hidden by signal noise)

I'd guess this means that its maybe some resonance effect most noticeable on the G string and most amplified with an overdriven amp model.

There is a little bit of the effect on some notes on other strings, but the G string is just aggravatingly bad. So bad that you really don't want to hold a long note in the region where its worst.

Damping? where to start? something else? Magic?

Hoping for ideas


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#6 arislaf

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Posted 12 October 2013 - 01:06 AM

 

For begin. The same apply for the bridge.What is your JTV?


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Before line6 was called line6... they used to do r&d for other companies like alesis + others. and when those customers came to visit the offices of line6 (before it was called line6) and the receptionist needed to warn all the guys who were designing products for other companies (and for themselves... ) who were like 'in the back' the receptionist would announce over a tannoy 'tellephone call for 'fred smith' on line 6' the cunning part was that they only had 5 telephone lines, so it was the secret code for "hide your sh1t the feds are comin'" or "someone's coming, let's hide these PODs that we aren't going to release for another few years so they don't see them" 

 

BEST CABS: www.studiocat.com


#7 Charlie_Watt

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Posted 12 October 2013 - 05:43 AM

If you get any of it with just the mag pickups (battery removed) then it's the guitar setup itself.  Look for something wrong at the bridge or nut or fretboard that is causing the G string not to ring out properly.


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#8 MartinDorr

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Posted 14 October 2013 - 07:39 AM

Thanks for all the tips.

Current status is that I was able to break down the problem into 4 contributing factors:
1) Inexperience in how to play high gain sound melodies, e.g., sloppy tying of notes w/o significant re-triggering causes some wild effects (and gurgling)
2) There are naturally occuring (and modelled) sound effects of the selected amp (both good (if you know how to use them) and bad (if they surprise you))
3) New strings and tighening loose lock nut pegs have an effect on tone ring out (surprised? not really - I should have checked).
4) There is still something going on in how my G string rings out (seems like a whole bunch of frequencies fade out quickly after about a second (not clear whether they should have been there in the first place) and this seems to increase the gurgly character of the G string sound.

Overall it's definitely better, but because I can hear the ring out differences on both clean (no amp) and overdriven sounds I suspect there is still something yet to be fixed in my guitar mechanics though i have no clue of what else to check for looseness, dirt, or whatever. Everything feels solid and dampening anything I could think of did not change the outcome. The action is not low either.

... and I have a Korean JTV-69, HD-500, DT-25 Combo (someone asked earlier).
Did not use the DT-25 for the experiments to minimize the variables.
Maybe the Korean build quality is biting me ...

Appreciate if you have any further tips on what to check.
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#9 MartinDorr

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Posted 20 October 2013 - 07:05 PM

Having trouble uploading anything.

How does 'My Media' work or is the only way to post to a 3rd party web site and link?


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#10 MartinDorr

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Posted 20 October 2013 - 07:32 PM

Ok, I figured it out (but why hide how to add attachments in reply options ?-)

 
Played 4 Gs on different strings (high E and down) w/o any attempt to improve tone or sustain to get bare tone and natural ring out.
#3 (playing G on 12th fret G string) is clearly worst with shortest ring out time and gurgling right from the start. Happens on any note I play on teh G string, but is most noticeable in upper octave.
 
Tightening all tuning pegs helped most, but did not eliminate the problem.
New strings helped, but not by much.
Dampening the tremolo springs may have helped, but I can't tell for sure.
 
[attachment=767:HD500 Check.mp3]

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#11 clay-man

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Posted 20 October 2013 - 08:11 PM

Are you using alt tunings?


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For a minute there, I lost myself.

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#12 MartinDorr

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Posted 21 October 2013 - 07:15 AM

Are you using alt tunings?

No, standard tuning, similar effect with mags via Variax or analog connection.

But the effect depends on the selected guitar model (the sample is Lester bridge) and the Amp model

The bridge mags on my JTV-69 are not as hot, but even adjusting for that with more Amp Drive does not produce as much of a gurgling effect.


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#13 Charlie_Watt

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Posted 21 October 2013 - 07:21 AM

If it does it with the mags  it is not the electronics.  It is mechanical.


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#14 MartinDorr

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Posted 21 October 2013 - 06:43 PM

maybe the piezo is catching a little also the slightly vibrating part of the string on the left of the fretted note..

try dampening that part of the string with a free finger or two, and see if that helps..

I wish you were right but that's not it either.

I guess that leaves the nut or the adjustable saddle as the next best choice to suspect if its a mechanical issue.

I'd have to agree with Charlie_Watt that if it does it with mags it really can't be the piezzos.

Guess I have to get a magnifiying glass and play Holmes ;-(.

Anyone with experience on what could be wrong with the nut opening or the saddle (or how it attaches to the bridge - a loose screw?)


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#15 clay-man

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Posted 21 October 2013 - 11:50 PM

I wish you were right but that's not it either.

I guess that leaves the nut or the adjustable saddle as the next best choice to suspect if its a mechanical issue.

I'd have to agree with Charlie_Watt that if it does it with mags it really can't be the piezzos.

Guess I have to get a magnifiying glass and play Holmes ;-(.

Anyone with experience on what could be wrong with the nut opening or the saddle (or how it attaches to the bridge - a loose screw?)

 

I think he is talking about the physical part of the piezo, which is in the saddle. The peizos are the capsules sticking out of the saddles, which is where part of the string sits, because piezos are contact pickups.


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For a minute there, I lost myself.

Radiohead_bear-728286%5B1%5D.png 


#16 Charlie_Watt

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Posted 22 October 2013 - 06:24 AM

It could be the nut but it could be anything in the guitar that is loose and free to vibrate.  It could just be a resonance somewhere.  Once you find it you can damp it out easily.


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#17 snhirsch

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Posted 22 October 2013 - 07:07 AM

Sure sounds like fret buzz to me.  As hurghanico pointed out, a solid G string is always going to have the largest mechanical excursion and is definitely the most likely to sprout odd overtones as a result.


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#18 MartinDorr

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Posted 23 October 2013 - 08:33 AM

Sure sounds like fret buzz to me.  As hurghanico pointed out, a solid G string is always going to have the largest mechanical excursion and is definitely the most likely to sprout odd overtones as a result.

Short of changing the bridge setup I will raise the G string on the nut. I realize that this will have no effect on any tone I finger on the G string, but it should remove the problem at least for the unfingered G (if fret buzz is the issue). Softer playing should remove or at least reduce the effect too. Did not notice I does, but will recheck. Thanks for feedback.

 

This is starting to get into territory I don't feel competent of messing around with (e.g. truss rod or bridge and subsequent other setup adjustments). Any recommendations on a good place to get such work done in Phoenix AZ area or good document(s) to read about this topic?


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#19 MartinDorr

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Posted 23 October 2013 - 12:49 PM

Hey, thanks a bunch hurghanico

Looks like I'll have a couple more things to try and will delay finding a setup shop in favor of learning a trick or 2 from the videos.

Sampled the trussrod one, and I am impressed!

Updates will have to wait a little as I won't be able to play for a few days.


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#20 snhirsch

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Posted 23 October 2013 - 02:16 PM

...also I heard that sometimes the magnetic pickups too close to the strings can cause odd warbling sounds..

 

Worth a try, but in my experience having pickups too close primarily affects the low-E and A string.  On my JTV-69 I need almost 1/4" clearance on the bottom strings to avoid warbling, but there's no corresponding issues on the high side.


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#21 MartinDorr

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Posted 26 October 2013 - 06:57 PM

OK, had time to try a couple things. A little update for now:

  • It's not fret buzz (raise G string at nut and the gurgle is present even when I finger no note; not as bad as on high note, but still there)
  • It's not the bridge pickup height either (put it all the way down; no effect on gurgle besides my mags got quieter

That leaves the truss rod and possibly how the the piezo sits in the nut (maybe even the nut assembly itself). Need to do it little more research before I take it all apart and be confident I don't need a setup job after.


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#22 MartinDorr

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Posted 28 October 2013 - 02:28 PM

OK, had time to try a couple things. A little update for now:

  • It's not fret buzz (raise G string at nut and the gurgle is present even when I finger no note; not as bad as on high note, but still there)
  • It's not the bridge pickup height either (put it all the way down; no effect on gurgle besides my mags got quieter

That leaves the truss rod and possibly how the the piezo sits in the nut (maybe even the nut assembly itself). Need to do it little more research before I take it all apart and be confident I don't need a setup job after.

Tried the truss rod adjustment and found that I could not get it to move at all with the pressure I was daring to use.

It definitely does not feel loose, but seeing how easy the luthier in the video did this I suspect I need a pro that knows what he is doing (mine may not be working quite as intended).

 

Looked more into the nut and took both the G and B string ones apart and adjusted their height (just to see whether this does anything). Put it all back together and adjusted it to match the fretboard curve at different heights ... and it sounds just as badly as before.

 

Only thing I am suspicious of now is that the piezo on the G string is a tiny bit lower than the rest of the nut string indent. I cannot really see it but feel it going over it with my fingernail. Don't get quite the same feeling when I do the same on the working B string. Looks like i will be heading for a Line 6 service place unless someone has another thing to try.

Thanks for bearing with me.


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#23 Charlie_Watt

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Posted 28 October 2013 - 02:39 PM

What you are calling the "nut" is actually the "Bridge".    Truss Rod adjustment nut is not easy to turn.  You would want to loosen it to add more relief.  If you are not comfortable doing this I would recommend that you take the guitar to an experienced luthier (Get some recommendations!!!!) to have it set up.  He can find any problems with neck or frets.


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#24 roxrob

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Posted 29 October 2013 - 10:58 AM

Hi, just got my JTV69 yesterday and I've noticed that the alternative tuning wheel vibrates with certain notes, which I dont hear amplified (thankfully) but am a little annoyed. Maybe a similar thing with yours but perhaps the piezos in the bridge are picking up the vibration?

 

Worth a try?

 

Rob


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#25 MartinDorr

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Posted 29 October 2013 - 01:29 PM

Thanks for additional feedback.
Yes, I was a nut and I meant the individual string saddles of the bridge.
Ordered a set of strings with a wound G string (D'Addario Chromes Jazz Light) - the web is full of references to bad G string sounds especially for distorted sounds.
And I'll check the tuning wheel, althought I thought I already did in the very beginning.
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