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Stepping over the digital line in the sand

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So I think just about everyone on this forum is after pretty much the same thing, great awe inspiring tone that sounds as close to the real thing as possible without sounding too digital.  I have seen many folks on here acknowledge the fact that the POD has a definite digital sound to it that become more noticeable in patches with the more that you stack in it.  For a while now, I have been coming to terms with that issue.  At first I thought this odd "frequency" that I couldn't seem to EQ out was an issue with my lack of knowledge of how to EQ properly or old strings but I am really starting to believe that it's the digital quality that of the POD becoming too apparent in my patches.  So in an attempt to understand what lines to not cross over for myself and others I was hoping that some of you veterans out there might post some guide lines and helpful hints that you guys have found to keep that digital sound tamed as much as possible.  

 

Thanks folks!

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I went the 'easy' route; got a DT25!... I use the preamp only versions, and then use the XLR out from the back of the DT to feed the recordings / mix / etc..

 

Before that, I used various guitar amps, with and without FX loops; I tried running direct to various mixers, speakers, keyboard amps.

But none of that worked for me when it came time to jam with my band. I struggled to be heard, and then when I was loud enough, struggled to sound good.

 

I think the most important aspect to getting good sound with 'studio/direct' is to build your patches using the same gear you intend to amplify it with in a stage setting, and at close to what you would use for 'gig' volumes. When I play at home in 'studio/direct', I run the outputs from the HD500 to a mixer, out to a pair of L2t speakers - if I wasn't using the DT, and didn't need the L2t's for floor monitors with the band's PA, I would use those to hear myself on stage. But I just prefer the DT; it makes my tone quest way easier.. 

 

The speakers you use to amplify are crucial to how it sounds. Guitar amp, keyboard amp, full range, whatever - each offers a major difference in the perception of that "digital" sound.

 

When I got the DT25 (1x12 combo), I started from scratch with my patches, and nearly instantly had good tone, at levels when at rehearsal, drums, bass and another guitar using a 40w Fender tweed. As in, amp model only, with zero FX, no EQ added, no comp, no noise gate - just amp model tone. Then I started adding FX to the amp models that I liked 'by themselves'..

 

Take a listen to the stuff Glenn DeLaune does with the HD500, that dude seems to have a knack for dialing in killer direct tones.. 

 

https://www.youtube.com/user/extremevideopro

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So I think just about everyone on this forum is after pretty much the same thing, great awe inspiring tone that sounds as close to the real thing as possible without sounding too digital.  I have seen many folks on here acknowledge the fact that the POD has a definite digital sound to it that become more noticeable in patches with the more that you stack in it.  For a while now, I have been coming to terms with that issue.  At first I thought this odd "frequency" that I couldn't seem to EQ out was an issue with my lack of knowledge of how to EQ properly or old strings but I am really starting to believe that it's the digital quality that of the POD becoming too apparent in my patches.  So in an attempt to understand what lines to not cross over for myself and others I was hoping that some of you veterans out there might post some guide lines and helpful hints that you guys have found to keep that digital sound tamed as much as possible.  

 

Thanks folks!

 

Here's what works for me:

 

1) Don't listen with tweezers and a magnifying glass...over-analyzing will lead to becoming obsessed with every minor nuance that your ears can discriminate, half of which are gonna disappear once you put the guitar in a mix with other instruments anyway.

 

2) Don't rely too heavily on FX...this goes for an traditional rig too. The more crap you pile on, the more processed and less "authentic" it sounds. Just start with whatever amp model you're gonna work with, and get a raw tone. No extra drive or distortion, no EQ except the amp's tone stack, no reverb, no nothing...then add the FX one at a time to see what each one does to the sound, before adding the next one. Most of my patches have just a distortion box or overdrive in front (depends on the amp...some don't need it), maybe a compressor...again it depends on the amp, and at the end a little reverb, and delay (usually only for leads). Clean tones I might add a little chorus...

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The more crap you pile on, the more processed and less "authentic" it sounds. Just start with whatever amp model you're gonna work with, and get a raw tone. No extra drive or distortion, no EQ except the amp's tone stack, no reverb, no nothing...then add the FX one at a time to see what each one does to the sound, before adding the next one. Most of my patches have just a distortion box or overdrive in front (depends on the amp...some don't need it), maybe a compressor...again it depends on the amp, and at the end a little reverb, and delay (usually only for leads). Clean tones I might add a little chorus...

 

+1. That's the exact same I approach that I use. Less is definitely more when patch building. It stands to reason if you think about it...the more processing the unit has to do the more processed the sound you get out of it will become.

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The speakers you use to amplify are crucial to how it sounds. Guitar amp, keyboard amp, full range, whatever - each offers a major difference in the perception of that "digital" sound.

 

https://www.youtube.com/user/extremevideopro

 

Personally I decided to go direct with the POD out to 31 band EQ and into a pair of FRFR speakers.  It was the best choice I ever made ditching my traditional guitar cab though I have often wondered about those DT heads and a L6 cab.  What I tend to notice, and maybe it is me micro analyzing, is a perceived digital sound in the high end and I've never been able to EQ it out and it's not in all patches. 

 

1) Don't listen with tweezers and a magnifying glass...over-analyzing will lead to becoming obsessed with every minor nuance that your ears can discriminate, half of which are gonna disappear once you put the guitar in a mix with other instruments anyway.

 

2) Don't rely too heavily on FX...this goes for an traditional rig too. The more crap you pile on, the more processed and less "authentic" it sounds. Just start with whatever amp model you're gonna work with, and get a raw tone. No extra drive or distortion, no EQ except the amp's tone stack, no reverb, no nothing...then add the FX one at a time to see what each one does to the sound, before adding the next one. Most of my patches have just a distortion box or overdrive in front (depends on the amp...some don't need it), maybe a compressor...again it depends on the amp, and at the end a little reverb, and delay (usually only for leads). Clean tones I might add a little chorus...

 

I am so guilty of no. 1.  I am way too much of a perfectionist in my tones.  I have to make myself back off sometimes because if I don't I'll never actually play, I'll just tweak forever and that's no fun.

 

For me, what I have been putting in my patches lately is a Noise gate > Distortion or Overdrive (if needed) > Full Amp Model > Delay > Reverb.  Lately I have been playing with tube compressors as well if it makes the tone better.  It doesn't sound like a ton of stuff but, maybe I really don't need all of that.  I am setting up mainly for live stuff and I have heard many people say that a quick slapback delay is better than reverb live except for leads, so I could probably drop that.  I only toss an EQ in there if my post 31 band EQ doesn't take care of it, which honestly is rare.  Had my soundman friend set it up for me and it does a great job.  

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So I think just about everyone on this forum is after pretty much the same thing, great awe inspiring tone that sounds as close to the real thing as possible without sounding too digital.  I have seen many folks on here acknowledge the fact that the POD has a definite digital sound to it that become more noticeable in patches with the more that you stack in it.  For a while now, I have been coming to terms with that issue.  At first I thought this odd "frequency" that I couldn't seem to EQ out was an issue with my lack of knowledge of how to EQ properly or old strings but I am really starting to believe that it's the digital quality that of the POD becoming too apparent in my patches.  So in an attempt to understand what lines to not cross over for myself and others I was hoping that some of you veterans out there might post some guide lines and helpful hints that you guys have found to keep that digital sound tamed as much as possible.  

 

Thanks folks!

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I am a perfectionist about my playing not my tones.If you play live in front of an audience I dont care how jaw dropping your "tones" might be to another guitar player the general audience can tell that either you can play or you cant.I wont go into how many Axe Fx guys I have blown off the stage with my old JCM combo a couple of pedals and a pretty good set of ears and a few thousand hours of practicing WITH NO AMP! That is how you get better folks.Get that guitar happening /resonating/ speaking etc... with no amp and then plug it in.90 per cent of what I do is in my hands.

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I am a perfectionist about my playing not my tones.If you play live in front of an audience I dont care how jaw dropping your "tones" might be to another guitar player the general audience can tell that either you can play or you cant.I wont go into how many Axe Fx guys I have blown off the stage with my old JCM combo a couple of pedals and a pretty good set of ears and a few thousand hours of practicing WITH NO AMP! That is how you get better folks.Get that guitar happening /resonating/ speaking etc... with no amp and then plug it in.90 per cent of what I do is in my hands.

 

I am a perfectionist also when it comes to playing. The tones I've been learning to not worry about so much. As you say, only people with trained listening skills might be able to tell a difference.

 

But I have to disagree about practicing without an amp. Maybe it depends on the type of music being played, but for myself, partial to higher gain vai/satriani type stuff, the tone is an essential component, affecting immensely how I interact with the guitar. Without it, many of the phrasings would just not be possible. It would be like cutting off the last three fingers on your right hand and your thumb from the left. Yikes!

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I don't buy this concept that digital sounding = 'bad'

 

It depends. There is certainly a time and a place to sound digital and NOT organic

 

I want equipment that can give me whatever sound I want for the project I am doing

 

Oftentimes , the last thing I want to sound like is the Sam cliched sounds/tones we've been hearing for decades to the point where people think 'thats what a guitar is supposed to sound like'

 

So when the OP says as close to the real thing, I would say WHAT real thing?

 

Some of the first guys to employ distortion took a knife to a speaker. There was NO 'real thing' that Link Wray was trying to sound like

 

It was a new thing.

 

I got into effects right off the bat and one of the reasons I got a POD and a Variax is to forge my own way. Sure on a tune I might want an effect that sounds like a Leslie for instance, but in general I want equipment that will allow me to express the way I feel; what I want to say, and the sound I hear inside when I conceptualise a song

 

Variax with workbench is AWESOME because we can create guitars that not only gave never existed before, but that CANNOT exist in the real world

 

THAT is awesome

 

Don't get me wrong. I appreciate for instance (in addition to his brilliant playing), the tone that Hendrix achieved.... And given the equipment available at the time, he definitely squeezed the {##}##}#*%{\%# out of an upside down start. A few pedals and an amp (and a lighter and his teeth!) and certainly a lot of guitarists seek that sound of a 'real' vintage strat and a real Marshall and bla bla bla and would be stoked to have that tone (and of course those CHOPS!)

 

But what I find ironic is that imo if Hendrix were alive today, I don't think he would sound ANYTHING like 'classic Hendrix'

 

Heck I think he'd give Adrian Belew a run for his money

 

I'm way more concerned with my equipment allowing me to make sounds where the word 'real' has no meaning since they are new and unique to me

 

We have such an embarrassment of riches, so much technology that will help us make new music and sound UNREAL

 

that's what excites me

 

Analog 'warmth' is cool but so is digital

 

I embrace it!!!!

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...

But what I find ironic is that imo if Hendrix were alive today, I don't think he would sound ANYTHING like 'classic Hendrix'

 

Heck I think he'd give Adrian Belew a run for his money

..

 

i wld not bet on this, well, i believe he wld simply sound Hendrix-like :)

 

imo, his playing was IS really unique and unmatchable..

 

besides his playing technique, the conversion of the right hand strat in2 a lefty one resulted in actually obtaining a characteristic sound.

 

and i'll explain myself: on a conventional right-hand strat, the bridge pu is angled in a way that the high E+B r producing more highs.

 

now, if u reverse the strings, the low E+A perform "mirror-wise" 2 the "righty" high E+B (producing more highs).

 

also, staggering is also the 2nd important factor 2gether with the 3rd factor, the total string length (on a reversed-righty-->lefty strat, high E is the shortest string).

 

now, what is really UNBELIEVABLE, is that U CAN SIMULATE ALL THESE WITH WORKBENCH (with the ecxeption of string length of course).

 

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So when the OP says as close to the real thing, I would say WHAT real thing?

 

I agree that every sound has its place and obviously everyone's take on what is good is different but take a look at the existence of the Custom Tone site and the massive amount of people in the "share you settings" forum looking for a particular artists sound.  Most of the requests seem to not be for the digital new age style guitar sounds but more of the classic stuff which has that analog, non digital feel.

 

Personally I do like digital sounding guitars in the right music but that's not what this thread was about.  This thread was about how to add enough into your patches without stepping over the line and making it sound too processed and digital.

 

 

I am a perfectionist about my playing not my tones.If you play live in front of an audience I dont care how jaw dropping your "tones" might be to another guitar player the general audience can tell that either you can play or you cant.I wont go into how many Axe Fx guys I have blown off the stage with my old JCM combo a couple of pedals and a pretty good set of ears and a few thousand hours of practicing WITH NO AMP! That is how you get better folks.Get that guitar happening /resonating/ speaking etc... with no amp and then plug it in.90 per cent of what I do is in my hands.

 

Very good point.  A good guitarists with a $200 guitar will sound better on a stage then a crappy guitarist with the best rig in the world.  I'm glad that you feel you have blown that many guys off of the stage, kudos... I guess.  I bet those guys with the Axe effects still thought they were pretty good though.  Personally, I play better when I am really into my tone.  It inspires me because I love the sound of it.  Kind of like going out for a night on the town KNOWING that I look good vs. looking like a chode.  It certainly effects how I personally play.

 

Either way though, you sir, have missed the point here.  The POD can be truly daunting and I was hoping to get all of you guys to post pointers for newbs and semi-newbs to help them (and me) out with the difficult task of creating a quality sound without it sounding too digital (unless they wanted it to be).

 

very briefly what I can say based on what I heard so far in some places around the world is that the real things in the wrong hands can sound so horrifically that some digital clippings in comparison would be almost a pleasure to hear..

 

conversely, I heard digital equipment in the right hands sounding more real and pleasantly than the real things

 

So very true there.  It's all about the fingers and ability as well.  I remember being a young guitarist and hating my gear thinking it sounded like crap and my lead guitarist at the time decided to give it a whack and .. well, yeah he certainly showed me what it could really sound like.

 

************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************

 

So, so far reading through this topic, the only pointers I am really seeing to stay away from a too digital sound is to not overload it with too many effects.  But what if you need that many effects in a particular patch or it's popping up without too many effects in it?  Is there no way that anyone has found to counter this sound at all besides the less is more approach?

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 But what if you need that many effects in a particular patch or it's popping up without too many effects in it?  

 

 

 

 

 

 

I realize it's just my personal opinion, but you don't really "need" to have 10 different fx going at once...no one does, unless your goal is sound like a spaceship in a bad sci-fi movie...at some point it stops sounding like a guitar.

 

As for, "it's popping up without too many effects in it"...not really sure what that means.

 

Much of the problem also lies with the fact you're the only one who knows what you're really looking for.  What works for me, won't necessarily work for you....and neither one of us is "right". Different guitars, string gauges, the other compnents in your rig, the room you're sitting in...it all makes a "one size fits all" approach pretty much impossible. Trial and error is the only way to figure it out...it sucks, but it's the truth. Just my 2 cents.

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I agree that every sound has its place and obviously everyone's take on what is good is different but take a look at the existence of the Custom Tone site and the massive amount of people in the "share you settings" forum looking for a particular artists sound.  Most of the requests seem to not be for the digital new age style guitar sounds but more of the classic stuff which has that analog, non digital feel.

 

Personally I do like digital sounding guitars in the right music but that's not what this thread was about.  This thread was about how to add enough into your patches without stepping over the line and making it sound too processed and digital.

 

 

 

 

Very good point.  A good guitarists with a $200 guitar will sound better on a stage then a crappy guitarist with the best rig in the world.  I'm glad that you feel you have blown that many guys off of the stage, kudos... I guess.  I bet those guys with the Axe effects still thought they were pretty good though.  Personally, I play better when I am really into my tone.  It inspires me because I love the sound of it.  Kind of like going out for a night on the town KNOWING that I look good vs. looking like a chode.  It certainly effects how I personally play.

 

Either way though, you sir, have missed the point here.  The POD can be truly daunting and I was hoping to get all of you guys to post pointers for newbs and semi-newbs to help them (and me) out with the difficult task of creating a quality sound without it sounding too digital (unless they wanted it to be).

 

 

 

So very true there.  It's all about the fingers and ability as well.  I remember being a young guitarist and hating my gear thinking it sounded like crap and my lead guitarist at the time decided to give it a whack and .. well, yeah he certainly showed me what it could really sound like.

 

************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************

 

So, so far reading through this topic, the only pointers I am really seeing to stay away from a too digital sound is to not overload it with too many effects.  But what if you need that many effects in a particular patch or it's popping up without too many effects in it?  Is there no way that anyone has found to counter this sound at all besides the less is more approach?

 

Look up drummer John JR Robinson.Quincy Jones studio drummer for the last 30 years.I was chosen to play a concert with him at the local university in 2010 by the professor and lecturer there in pop rock and jazz. We played a lot of his Herbie Hancock fusion tunes/ his own compositions and tunes like Moments Notice. I did not get that gig because I can't play.The HD500 has more than enough juice.The player has to do the rest.If you dont like digitized music get rid of your ipod/ cd players etc ...I hear digital crappiness in all of it but it is the way things are in a modern music world. I keep several nice tube amps and a bunch of old pedals and some vinyl records around for my own enjoyment. I know many players who try the digital stuff and abandon it and go back to the old school way of doing things.Nothing wrong with that.Hurghanicos guide is brilliant.Follow all the suggeations in it and see what happens.

 

Good Luck with your playing!

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Look up drummer John JR Robinson.Quincy Jones studio drummer for the last 30 years.I was chosen to play a concert with him at the local university in 2010 by the professor and lecturer there in pop rock and jazz. We played a lot of his Herbie Hancock fusion tunes/ his own compositions and tunes like Moments Notice. I did not get that gig because I can't play.The HD500 has more than enough juice.The player has to do the rest.If you dont like digitized music get rid of your ipod/ cd players etc ...I hear digital crappiness in all of it but it is the way things are in a modern music world. I keep several nice tube amps and a bunch of old pedals and some vinyl records around for my own enjoyment. I know many players who try the digital stuff and abandon it and go back to the old school way of doing things.Nothing wrong with that.Hurghanicos guide is brilliant.Follow all the suggeations in it and see what happens.

 

Good Luck with your playing!

 

Hey man, never said or insinuated you couldn't play.  Just never liked it when guitarists count how good they are by how many other guitarists they show up.  And yes digital music is what everything is about now.  even those who play only analog, well.. it turns into digital once it's recorded!  So I don't think its possible to avoid digital music.  I'm not talking about that.  I'm simply asking folks for their experiences, tip and tricks on how to avoid the sound getting overly digital and just flat out sounding fake.

 

I will still look up what you suggested though.  I remember Herbie Hancock from back in the day when I was young, not to make you feel old or anything!  :P

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Dude!  I just watched that vid and seriously, you HAVE to skip to the 23 minute mark and watch from there.  That was very cool to see this guy, well respected, is using a pair of 1st gen POD's for his entire rig.  Straight to FOH and also through a Fryette stereo tube power amp and a pair of 1X12 cabs for stage fill only!  Guarantee nobody has a clue that's what he is doing and nobody thinks its digital either...

 

I think sometimes we hear what we think we should be hearing rather than just letting it rip and enjoying it.  As many have said, once you are in the mix and cooking, those slight nuances disappear.  Still, there is a complexity to the tone that comes from using a tube power section, whether its a DT or something else.  That does not mean the FOH needs to be a mic'd cab, but if that's what YOU need for stage fill, it just might be the "missing" ingredient...

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practicing WITH NO AMP! That is how you get better folks.Get that guitar happening /resonating/ speaking etc... with no amp and then plug it in.90 per cent of what I do is in my hands.

 

Yes!! I love to sit on the couch with my strat, just picking away, making barely any sound. It's true; your fingers are your tone. Learning how to control how that tone your fingers create with amps and effects comes after.

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Yes!! I love to sit on the couch with my strat, just picking away, making barely any sound. It's true; your fingers are your tone. Learning how to control how that tone your fingers create with amps and effects comes after.

 

 

I am a perfectionist also when it comes to playing. The tones I've been learning to not worry about so much. As you say, only people with trained listening skills might be able to tell a difference.

 

But I have to disagree about practicing without an amp. Maybe it depends on the type of music being played, but for myself, partial to higher gain vai/satriani type stuff, the tone is an essential component, affecting immensely how I interact with the guitar. Without it, many of the phrasings would just not be possible. It would be like cutting off the last three fingers on your right hand and your thumb from the left. Yikes!

 

I actually tend to agree with both of ya.  It is fun to sit on the couch and pick away because you can definitely hear if you're fretting something wrong and if you producing good clean notes.  Same time I love the sound of a great high gain tone roaring out of an amp, even though id certainly covers a ton of sins it's still a blast to hear that and practice that way too.  Dunno maybe it's a high gain thing.  I can certainly see if I was playing blues or Jazz you really wouldn't need the amp at all to practice.

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Not to mention it is a potential way to pick up bad playing habits, if done to excess.

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depending on the style of music you play --- playing ampless (acoustic or unplugg electric) can ruin technique. 

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Damn... those teachers at the Guitar Institute had it completely wrong! Expecting us to learn advanced guitar techniques while not plugging in...  :angry:

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If there is one thing that the 80's taught us, it's that you can NEVER be too digital! 

-less sand, more concrete and latex!

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Damn... those teachers at the Guitar Institute had it completely wrong! Expecting us to learn advanced guitar techniques while not plugging in...  :angry:

 

Well, yes. It is because of audibility. 

 

If you think about it, runners will run with weights or maybe a while towing something. It is a training tool. If you can run with something weighing you down, you can run faster in the actual competition without a parachute strapped to your back. 

Mickey told Rocky that for a 45minute fight, ya gots ta train hard for 45 TOUZAN MINUTES. 

 

See, playing acoustically is about creating sound. Playing technique for sound is different than playing technique for speed. While it is true, that amps/fx can cover up a lot of mistakes, the techniques are different. 

Playing to make your own volume, maybe you pick a little harder. Making your own tone, maybe you hold the strings a little firmer.

Where in the technique book at GI, does it say to pick harder or to grasp firmly on the string? 

 

While I know that the true technique would be to not let yourself make your own volume when playing ampless, and to use the same picking either way. 

But if you can't hear it then how do you know what you are doing. It is only natural that we compensate the volume via picking. 

 

 

 

So, playing unplugged, while good to make sure that you aren't relying on electronics to cover up mistakes, if overdone can cause changes in how you should be playing. 

No different than standing or sitting when you play. You should be able to do both, but you need to make sure that you are practicing in the position that you will be performing, because the two techniques are different. 

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..., just picking away, making barely any sound...

 

When I just started, i had no amp. Later, with an amp and some distortion, I found that I don't mute strings I don't want to hear. I didn't hear them anyway :) So I had to relearn... Still have to. To learn sound good you need to play both with and without an amp (or with and without distortion). 

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In addition to seeking out a 'real' (old fashioned) sound, the hd500 excels at getting a solid intentionally digital tone. Nothing wrong with that. Check out my recordings. I love getting new, sounds in a digital realm. My influences reflect that eg Adrian Belew

 

A lot of people want to sound like Hendrix WTC but IMO if he was alive, he'd be taking advantage of new stuff just like he did back in the day and you'd heard some very DIGITAL tones

 

If you embrace the digital , POD's gain a whole new awesome utility

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...A lot of people want to sound like Hendrix WTC but IMO if he was alive, he'd be taking advantage of new stuff just like he did back in the day and you'd heard some very DIGITAL tones...

 

then he wld not sound like Hendrix ;)

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then he wld not sound like Hendrix ;)

 

Hendrix would sound like Hendrix on anything he played just like SRV, Clapton, Paige, Lifeson...  the magic is in the fingers,everything else is just a tool to let it out...

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The best player through a crap amp still sounds like crap.  Doesn't play like crap, but sounds like crap.  The Magic is in the fingers but the Trick is the tone. 

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I am a perfectionist about my playing not my tones.If you play live in front of an audience I dont care how jaw dropping your "tones" might be to another guitar player the general audience can tell that either you can play or you cant.I wont go into how many Axe Fx guys I have blown off the stage with my old JCM combo a couple of pedals and a pretty good set of ears and a few thousand hours of practicing WITH NO AMP! That is how you get better folks.Get that guitar happening /resonating/ speaking etc... with no amp and then plug it in.90 per cent of what I do is in my hands.

I have been telling young, or new players this for years JTSC777. I absolutely agree with you. Still it is amazing how many people think I am nuts when I say really good tone comes from the hands as much as the instrument. I think this is something only experience can prove to a skeptic.

 

Personality is part of the equation I think. Some players are always trying to improve, others reach a certain level and never surpass it.

I think we can safely say the best players are truly driven and are always looking for ways to improve their tone and chops.

 

It is easy to get lost in all the technology, to the point where our playing suffers.

 

As they say, practice makes perfect.....

Or as my wife always says " how many times do you have to play that damn song?" LOL.

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Standing up causes you to lose 10 per cent of your chops period . Any of you who have taken jazz lessons from a really good jazz piano player should know that.Sure you play the amp too etc...I like to practice on an acoustic for some of the same reasons I practice electric unplugged.It's like swinging a bat with a donut on it. When you practice that way when you get in the box and it is your turn to hit swinging the bat is a lot easier. All of these guys Satriani etc... all practice with and without the amp.I buy guitars because of how they sound unamplified.If it sucks unplugged I dont bother to play it through an amp and I keep looking.

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The best player through a crap amp still sounds like crap.  Doesn't play like crap, but sounds like crap.  The Magic is in the fingers but the Trick is the tone. 

 

Couldn't have said it better. I find it funny when people forget that guitars, pedals, amps and even picks are tools. The better the tools the better tone.

 

We all obviously know spending $100000 on the tools won't make you a pro player but there is a reason why pro players use higher end gear. 

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If there is one thing that the 80's taught us, it's that you can NEVER be too digital! 

 

-less sand, more concrete and latex!

 

The 80's?  Well yeah that and Tom Morello.  Just heard some Rage the other day and almost forgot how nuts his sound can get.

 

While I know that the true technique would be to not let yourself make your own volume when playing ampless, and to use the same picking either way. 

But if you can't hear it then how do you know what you are doing. It is only natural that we compensate the volume via picking. 

 

 

Honestly I had never thought of that but it is so true.  I have to recently work on teaching myself to fret and pick lighter when playing my electric to get a better tone and speed.  It is very possible that might be where I picked up that habit.  I play unplugged quite a bit, not really to listen for issues in my playing but more to not disturbed other is in the room.  Not an issue I have now thank god.. new house = man cave!

 

If you embrace the digital , POD's gain a whole new awesome utility

 

I do love a good digital sound as well.  It certainly has it's uses and place.  Personally I am looking to get that really good non-digital sound as my home base point.  Once I have that then I am ALL about adding some crazy stuff in there.  I'm a big Tool fan and he is certainly all about some crazy effects.

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Honestly I had never thought of that but it is so true.  I have to recently work on teaching myself to fret and pick lighter when playing my electric to get a better tone and speed.  It is very possible that might be where I picked up that habit.  I play unplugged quite a bit, not really to listen for issues in my playing but more to not disturbed other is in the room.  Not an issue I have now thank god.. new house = man cave!

 

Ultimately, it is the same theory as the one used to justify scalloped fretboards. 

You lose energy pressing against the board. No board=no loss of energy. 

Picking too hard and holding too tightly on the stings trying to 'make tone' results in loss of energy. Energy that could be spent hitting 3 other notes in that same amount of time. 

 

 

The other people are right, you need to play acoustic(ly). 

But it is not a cut and dry scenario. 

It really is a difference as to which discipline you are trying to master. 

Plus, not everyone is a 'master'. 

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I do agree about practicing with and without an amp.  Also lots of practice is very important.  And there is a lot of merit in "The tone is in the fingers".  But, you knew there was a "But" coming, pro players use really nice sounding equipment.  Combine really good equipment with a really good player and it sounds great.  Lose either one of these things and it doesn't sound great.  It will still sound good compared to someone who can't play very well but not good enough.

 

So, are there any more dead horses here that we can beat some more ?

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Ultimately, it is the same theory as the one used to justify scalloped fretboards. 

You lose energy pressing against the board. No board=no loss of energy. 

Picking too hard and holding too tightly on the stings trying to 'make tone' results in loss of energy. Energy that could be spent hitting 3 other notes in that same amount of time. 

 

My guitar has the top four frets scalloped. I've really grown to not like them very much. While they might produce an arguably longer sustain in practice, there is also more space under the string for it to dig into your fingertip, which is what I don't like.

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The 80's?  Well yeah that and Tom Morello.  Just heard some Rage the other day and almost forgot how nuts his sound can get.

 

 

 

Honestly I had never thought of that but it is so true.  I have to recently work on teaching myself to fret and pick lighter when playing my electric to get a better tone and speed.  It is very possible that might be where I picked up that habit.  I play unplugged quite a bit, not really to listen for issues in my playing but more to not disturbed other is in the room.  Not an issue I have now thank god.. new house = man cave!

 

 

 

I do love a good digital sound as well.  It certainly has it's uses and place.  Personally I am looking to get that really good non-digital sound as my home base point.  Once I have that then I am ALL about adding some crazy stuff in there.  I'm a big Tool fan and he is certainly all about some crazy effects.

Check out my post from 3 May, the first sound cloud file

 

Especially near the end of that file, they swirly keyboard sound?

 

That's an Ibanez hollow body guitar. Line in to the computer from the POD HD

 

no DAW effects

 

POD can give you some GREAT keyboard sounds

 

Check it out

 

Also the bass guitar in that track is the same guitar using the POD for Octaving

 

Heck, everything except for the drums is s guitar through a POD

 

NO AMP

 

no effects in the DAW

 

imo, some of that digitally sounding stuff, like the keyboard is awesome

 

Love my POD

 

I think the crunchy guitar sounds pretty organic and the POD is nice for that, but it's awesome to be able to fill in for a bass guitar and a keyboard with a guitar using POD

 

Instead of sounding like somebody else, there are so many sounds that have never been created or heard, just some button clicks and knob turns away!!!

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