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Guitar tones: So hard to commit to one!

Discussion in 'F.O.H.' started by H-evolve, Dec 19, 2016.

  1. H-evolve

    H-evolve Member

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    I don't know about you, but I guess I'm somewhat of a guitar tone whore! :p

    What I mean is, listening to many different bands, I always find something interesting in most of the guitar tones I hear. And when writing music and recording my own stuff (I'm mostly a bedroom kinda recording guy), I end up going back and forth between multiple tones because I like so many!

    For example, I'll record going for a Jeff Loomis kinda tone (ENGL amps and 5150, somewhat scooped). Then later during the day I'll listen to Sylosis or Revocation and I'll be "Damn that also sounds good"! But then they are not as scooped, a little more British sounding (at least to my ears). So I'll go and switch every plugin in my DAW to try and copy their tone.

    And then I'll listen to Black Crown Initiate and I'll be "Damn that also sounds good!". A lot less gain in their tone, probably because of the 8 string playing. Again, switching my plugins! XD

    Even when listening to my Steel Panther album, I enjoy that hair metal tone!

    Any of you guys like me? What are your top guitar tones? Are they very different?

    My top tones are probably from the following bands: Nevermore, The Black Dahlia Murder, Revocation, Black Crown Initiate, Lahmia, In Vain and finally Meadows End.

    (maybe this is more of a topic for the "Bar" section of the forum...? Sorry if some find that it's not a proper FOH post)
     
  2. MrBongo

    MrBongo idiot at work

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    I have and use my own tone exclusively. Don´t copy others, be yourself :thumbsup:

    Of course i enjoy lots of different tones and mixes (as long as they are not crushed and/or distorted. So it´s actually not a lot of mixes), but they are made and used by someone else. My rig sounds nothing like generic gear, it works for me and sounds like I want it to :)
     
  3. H-evolve

    H-evolve Member

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    Well, the way I see things, my tone is my own, but inspired by somebody else's. So, I don't know if that fulfills the definition of "not copying them" ;)

    And, to further explain what I meant earlier and refering to what you said: You say "It sounds like I want it to", well that is exactly what I was talking about: I can't decide what I want it to sound like!

    One moment I'll want to sound like "Tone A" and a moment later I'll want to sound like "Tone B" and another moment later, I'd like "Tone C".

    In a hypothetical situation, if I'd win just enough money to get a rig that gives me one tone only, it would be very difficult to decide what to buy!
     
  4. MrBongo

    MrBongo idiot at work

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    then you haven´t found your tone yet, i would say :)

    Maybe you could just play keyboard, so you can switch sounds on the fly. :p
     
  5. bryan_kilco

    bryan_kilco Member

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    I know the feeling. I get a tone that I think is badass then I reference to something and immediately feel bad about the tone I crafted.

    Lately I've been listening to a lot of stuff on headphones, and I find that almost every pro mix I listen to has this grainy-fizzy sound in the guitars that doesn't seem to be in my guitars. I can't put my finger on it, but it seems to be low-mid area, almost an over-gained type sound. A certain kind of "bite", whereas my tracks are a bit smoother.
     
  6. schwinginbatman

    schwinginbatman It's shittay!

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    I'm pretty fine. As far as my own projects go, my tone is basically my own spin on the Exodus tone, and after getting a Savage and Mesa 4x12, I've pretty much nailed it. Past that, it's just what sounds good for what I'm recording.
     
  7. newamerikangospel

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    I find my tone, then stick with that. I have my go to pod farm tone for preproduction, and I am just getting close to my recorded tone with my cobra (a pr20 literally the turning point in my guitar tone). Your guitar tone is your fingerprint. You already have one, but you may not have found it yet. Everything else is like tourism. Go to a different city, eat their pizza, ride their subway, but go back and lay down in your bed and feel immediately at home.
     
  8. Megin

    Megin Member

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    And, to further explain what I meant earlier and refering to what you said: You say "It sounds like I want it to", well that is exactly what I was talking about: I can't decide what I want it to sound like!

    One moment I'll want to sound like "Tone A" and a moment later I'll want to sound like "Tone B" and another moment later, I'd like "Tone C".
    [/QUOTE]
    You just need to decide to Tone A,B or C. This is a modern problem today. Too many choices and too many sounds to choose from. Dont get me wrong nothing wrong with that if you know what you're doing. Bu like I said just use one and go for it e.g. a month. You will even appreciate the tone more then. So many are trapped in the preset hell and will never be satisfied with what they have so they go and buy another ampsim, vst synth, effects etc. and fool them self that maybe with this...And spend their time searching for the holy grail of sound ideal more than making music. Decide to not be one of them and stop wasting time and make music now man!
     
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  9. H-evolve

    H-evolve Member

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    I guess you are probably right. There is, indeed, a lot of choices available. With all the gear, with the access that we have to all bands and low profile artists. You can hear a wide variety of tones within the same day.

    Plus, I deal with guitar tones as I deal with cars! :p I never buy the same car twice, and I change every 3 to 4 years!

    But, on a different note, I think the big challenge in finding your own tone, is that you need time/experience and ideally money, to be able to afford whatever gear might be required to achieve that special tone you want. Could be a new mic, a new cab, a new amp... But ya, it is not straightfoward that is for sure! :p

    And you can call me old school. I'm not that much of a plugin guy. I'm really not into Axe-FX and Kempers, or other Amp Sims. I use them to write music, and they are great for that... but there is something with tube amps that gets to me. I don't know. So ya, I guess my own tone would come from tube amps.

    Yes yes... I know I would probably not be able to hear the difference between a Kemper and the real tube amp. There is nothing rational into my preference toward tube amps, therefore it can't be debated!
     
  10. Loki Laufeyiarson

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    Just start with what you have and keep changing settings/positions/whatnot until you get as close to a tone that works for you as possible. Don't overcomplicate things.
     
  11. bryan_kilco

    bryan_kilco Member

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    I don't know my Cobra's that well at all, but my band played with another band and one guitarist had a Cobra head through an Orange cab and holy FUCK did it sound good. The tone almost seemed "empty" or "hollow" in a way, but it just cut like crazy and I immediately wanted one.
     
  12. H-evolve

    H-evolve Member

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    I read your message and at first I didn't really focus that much on the Heil PR20 you talked about. I did hear about that mic here and there, but never really took notice.

    But reading again your comment, I decided to listen to it.

    I just did listen to a couple of youtube videos where it is compared to a SM57 and a e906 (both mics that I already own) and wow! That mic is great. It sounds so well balanced. Not as fizzy as the SM57, and not as "boxy" (if that's a good way of putting it anyway..) as the e906.

    For sure I'll look into that mic and try to see if I can get one for a decent price. Getting a blend between them, or perhaps just 2 of them, would be quite interesting.
     
    #12 H-evolve, Dec 20, 2016
    Last edited: Dec 20, 2016
  13. newamerikangospel

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    They are very unique in their ability to walk the line of "this sounds great but will get buried" and "cutting through the mix". I have played a lot of amps, but have never gotten close to something so chewy in the low mids and clean/precise on the top end.
     
  14. newamerikangospel

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    They have a very weird/unique mid profile, almost like a "sag" to the tone which develops a lot of body. It's the only mic I have heard on a v30 that makes me want to record one. Sinquest (spelling) nails that tone very well, and he and I believe mickrich's uploads were where I decided I would buy one. Haven't looked back. I wasn't as happy with it on my k100 as an sm57 but the k100 is dark already. I haven't tried it on my t75 yet. It also doesn't seem to do well with some preamps in my experience. Especially if the preamp adds more body or thickens the mic tone (obviously).
     
  15. nezvers

    nezvers Beast

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    I find my tone by breaking down it into elements and sort where my preferences are. I like to have at little drive possible I can get away with and push myself to pick as hard as possible to get aggressive sound.
    Then I control low-end amount before amp just as little as possible it still have body but having as gas as possible boom decay on palm mutes (also need developing right palm muting for it).
    Then I've found that notching around 450hz before amp removes nasty harmonics on top-end.
    So basically go and sort your preferences in each small element of tone and you'll end up with unique tone.
    Referencing for setting tone controls mainly only to match style you are going after.
     
  16. bryan_kilco

    bryan_kilco Member

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    I'm borrowing our an Agile 7 string with Duncans in it (forget exactly which ones). Was jamming out last night with a basic sim chain loaded in Reaper.
    Reapers EQ is basically showing me that there's barely any info above like 5k, which is crazy to me. I really wish you could re-size their eq because it always messes with me. BUT I still notched out around 4k for the digital-ness and STILL have this shrill top end that I always seem to have in all my guitars unless I LP real low and then they are too dark. Ahhhhh!!! The fight!
     
  17. Vihaleipä

    Vihaleipä Member

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    The Reaper 5.30 update added the ability to resize some of the Reaper plugins like ReaEq and ReaXcomp if that's what you meant. The harshness could very well be somewhere above the 4 kHz range (that isn't a be and end all-frequency like the Sturgis forum makes it seems to be...). Maybe try notching somewhere in the 6-7.5 kHz range so you don't have to low pass your guitars to hell and back, I find that zone pretty annoying on guitars and overheads sometimes, a few dB's is usually enough.
     
  18. bryan_kilco

    bryan_kilco Member

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    Hmm, I have a new version of Reaper but apparently not the latest. My problem is, when I sweep for annoyance freqs, basically EVERYTHING sounds annoying to me, especially in the top end. So I have a really hard time actually identifying the bad stuff.
     
  19. Vihaleipä

    Vihaleipä Member

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    Personally what I like to do is that I'll bypass the EQ and I'll try to find a few annoying frequencies that I hear without even boosting them, and then I'll notch them by a few dB's. If you boost the high mids or highs of distorted guitars (which are essentially just broadband noise) with a shallow Q-value it's always going to sound really fucking annoying, the trick is just finding what really is the most annoying stuff there and reducing that a bit.

    It's really easy to overdo that, so adjusting the severity of the cuts with the full mix running in the background is a really good idea after you've found the right frequencies to notch out.
     
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  20. Korwent

    Korwent Member

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    Yup what I do is essentially that : I listen to the guitar track soloed and go like "what jumps at me as annoying?"
    Vihaleipä said any frequency seems harsh when boosted on guitars so I try to identify them BEFORE boosting, and do so just to confirm I'm at the right spot
     
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