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Rhythm tone Issues with new sg standard


mustangs

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I would like any suggetions on how to set my amp eq for a rhythm tone that is not mid/muddy, but volume balanced with all the strings. First of all I am strat player playing blues rock ,chicago, west coast styles. Im used to the single coil response to the pick attack on shuffle and palm muteing funk rhythm stuff. I mainly play through a twin, tweed bassman, or super reverb. I can dial in my tones for the strat, but Im lost with the sg. Not liking the pickups also. The bridge is too bright and the neck is too muddy. I have messed with the height and pole pieces, but Im guessing there is something Im clueless about. It may have to do with my feel for the instrument. Im thinking of changing out the pickups for some 335 paf style pickups with the same output in both positions. Also I know I need to switch out the 3oo pots. There are some things I love about the stock pickups, especially playing rock stuff, but they seem too hot for bb king otis rush, or finger style blues. Would like some suggestions on amp settings and or pickup choices or adjustments. I love this guitar!!! but right now it seems to be "The boss of me".

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Welcome.

 

Sounds like your on the right track - play with the amp settings, guitar settings, pup height and pole pieces.

 

Before making any physical changes - pots, caps, pups, etc. You should visit some shops and look for SGs with different pups then yours so you can play them and check the sound out. Swapping in pups you've heard in different guitars can sound fairly different in that relatively thin mahogany SG body.

 

You didn't mention what pups you've got in there.

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Welcome.

 

Sounds like your on the right track - play with the amp settings, guitar settings, pup height and pole pieces.

 

Before making any physical changes - pots, caps, pups, etc. You should visit some shops and look for SGs with different pups then yours so you can play them and check the sound out. Swapping in pups you've heard in different guitars can sound fairly different in that relatively thin mahogany SG body.

 

You didn't mention what pups you've got in there.

Thanks for responding BK. I have the stock pups presently. Do you have any advice on amp settings for the fender models I mentioned?

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Thanks for responding BK. I have the stock pups presently. Do you have any advice on amp settings for the fender models I mentioned?

There are two variations of pickups depending on which model and where you got it from. It can either have 490R/498T or BB2&3 with coil split.

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Guest BentonC

The 490R/498T pickup combo is going to be dark in the neck and bright/hot in the bridge, just by nature. That is the tone of that pickup set. The idea is to extend the versatility of the guitar.

 

I personally prefer the Burstbucker Pro pickups, and they might suit your tastes a bit more. They are a bit brighter than the 490R, and not as hot or bright as the 498T, so it might be a nice comprimise.

 

I also notice that they have a bit more harmonic content, which actually might be more pleasing to your ears if you are typically a strat player.

 

It is difficult though if you are switching back and forth with a strat and the sg, as they are soooo different in nature. It will be a shocking difference every time you switch over. (but that's what is so great about having more than one guitar- open up that tone toolbox!) [thumbup]

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See if you can check out a 57-Classic neck and 57-Classic+ at the bridge

 

Here's a vid, not sure what he's playing through. If you follow the vid to YouTube that vid page has a discussion of the pups on it.

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bBxQmKk5MS4

Thanks BK, Ill do some listening from the youtube thread you posted. Will also try out the 61 reissue pickup combo, as many people seem very happy with that sg. Was looking at that model when I decided on the standard. Didnt care for the longer neck of the reissue. Are there 57 classics in the reissue?

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The 490R/498T pickup combo is going to be dark in the neck and bright/hot in the bridge, just by nature. That is the tone of that pickup set. The idea is to extend the versatility of the guitar.

 

I personally prefer the Burstbucker Pro pickups, and they might suit your tastes a bit more. They are a bit brighter than the 490R, and not as hot or bright as the 498T, so it might be a nice comprimise.

 

I also notice that they have a bit more harmonic content, which actually might be more pleasing to your ears if you are typically a strat player.

 

It is difficult though if you are switching back and forth with a strat and the sg, as they are soooo different in nature. It will be a shocking difference every time you switch over. (but that's what is so great about having more than one guitar- open up that tone toolbox!) [thumbup]

Thanks for the great advice. Your right! switching between the strats and the sg drives me nuts, frustrates me and inspires..... but I love playing lead passages with the sg.. Especially on slow blues tunes. Playing rhythm is very annoying , especially with uptempo shuffles. Will check out the Burstbuckers .

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With my SG, I use much less Mid range, on the amp, for "Rhythm" work.

Fuller, rounder tone. I'm even getting to like those settings, for

some types, of "lead" work, as well. But, I often ramp the mids, back

up, for other "lead" applications. However, again...for Rhythm, I much

prefer less mid range, more full/round sound, which helps the (other)

guitarist, who's doing the "lead," to cut through the mix, too.

 

EQ pedals, can help, that way, as well.

 

But, that's just me. ;>)

 

CB

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With my SG, I use much less Mid range, on the amp, for "Rhythm" work.

Fuller, rounder tone. I'm even getting to like those settings, for

some types, of "lead" work, as well. But, I often ramp the mids, back

up, for other "lead" applications. However, again...for Rhythm, I much

prefer less mid range, more full/round sound, which helps the (other)

guitarist, who's doing the "lead," to cut through the mix, too.

 

EQ pedals, can help, that way, as well.

 

But, that's just me. ;>)

 

CB

Thanks CB, That makes sense. I usually have the mids cranked for my strats/wth/the twin and super reverb in my bluesrock band, but I play more rhythm in my west coast style blues band, and thats where Im running into trouble......plus the harp player sucks all the mid frequencies and I cant hear myself. Have an eq pedal too whtch I can ad to the board for rhythm parts. Will try it out at the next gig/ rehersal.

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Well, as I said, it's just what "I" do. Everyone's tone

preferences, are different. I like to compliment, the

other guitar player, with my rhythm tone, even to the point

of using a different guitar, if/when possible. If he uses

a Gibby style, I'll use my Telecaster. If he uses his Tele,

I'll use my SG or LP, etc. So, it's not always JUST the amp

settings. ;>)

 

CB

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  • 3 weeks later...

I would suggest leave your guitar alone exactly the way it came to you stock from the factory.

 

I have come from being Fender loyal for long years and have had to really learn about humbuckers.

 

As per the three lovely babys I play in my signature pic, I have found that all 3 of them can give me blistering note seperation on every pup, provided that my amp eq is mixed right.

 

One way I quickly learnt to get the sound I wanted from humbuckers is when I dial up my amp, I start my EQ with the neck pup first...then the rest should slip into place nicely..

 

Good Luck.. I feel satisfied that this simple method has allowed me to enjoy both my SG's and my 73LPC for their awesome tone capacity....

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I also have an SG & a Strat. It's taken me a while to get comfy with the SG. I also had the Strat first. I have an HSS Strat with a VERY bright bridge HB. Not "hot", just bright. Quite a nice sound with the other SCs. No ice pick bridge sounds, but a nice bright Strat bridge sound.

 

The SG on the other hand is darker and muddy. I have the Epi SG which is muddy on both the neck & bridge. The SG is just a different sound. I like the brighter Strat sound since I had the Strat first. I'd like to get the Strat SC sound from the SG, without losing the SG sound. I do want to get rid of the muddy thing though. I've been shopping for answers. I'm planning on Duncan P-Rails. HBs & SCs in a single housing. Seems like a good plan. I'm also considering pedals. I'm not a fan of tone pedals but I figure it may not be a bad way to go. Played the Duncan Twin Tube Blues & was very impressed. Definitely want this kind of tone available on a regular basis.

 

I'm playing through solid state, that may be why I like the TT Blues. I'm old enough to have owned several antique tube amps before they were antiques. Don't miss them a bit.

 

Good Luck

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Disaster and K.K., thanks for your suggestions. Im still struggling with the eq of the guitar/amp to find what works best for rhythm playing. Im not used to that much sustain with my strats. So the sg requires a different touch. Im heavy handed with the strats but it doesnt fly with the sg which wants to get mushy with that approach. I also dial up the mids on my fender amps and I may be over doing it with the sg. Also, when I get a sound I do like and then take it to the gig with the full band, its all wacky and I hate messing with it during the gig or rehersal and end up just taking it off and going to the strat.

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Ok bud, I reckon you need to back off on the gain when you are playing the SG... playing live is always going to require different EQ on the amp for different venues.

 

Yes it can be frustrating at times but it comes back to learning about your tools of the trade as to what the each individually do.

 

I suggest you back off on the gain with the SG and it will clean up your issue with lack of clarity ie; Muddy sound, if you want to use high gain well then you need to drop the bass on your amp eq..that should help clean things up a bit.

 

A Strat and an SG are definately two entirely opposite beast that need to be tamed differently.

 

Let us know ya keep getting on with any progress :)

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Disaster and K.K., thanks for your suggestions. Im still struggling with the eq of the guitar/amp to find what works best for rhythm playing. Im not used to that much sustain with my strats. So the sg requires a different touch. Im heavy handed with the strats but it doesnt fly with the sg which wants to get mushy with that approach. I also dial up the mids on my fender amps and I may be over doing it with the sg. Also, when I get a sound I do like and then take it to the gig with the full band, its all wacky and I hate messing with it during the gig or rehersal and end up just taking it off and going to the strat.

 

 

One of the things I find with the SG is that the sustain of the bass strings is severe compared with the high frequency strings. This is very anti-Strat. I've tried a few things... Teflon tape in the bridge mounting threads, plastic saddles (string savers), heat shrink tubing between the saddles & strings, lifting the tail piece up off the body. These made a slight improvement, but not enough. I'm looking for ProSteel strings. They're supposed to be a little brighter string than nickel/steel. Can't seem to find them in stock anywhere yet but I'm not giving up.

 

I think you're also suffering from a more pronounced sustain in the bass strings which is screwing up your head, not necessarily your sound. It takes some getting used to when switching from the Fender sound. At least it has for me. I also agree that working with your amp should help things. The trick is getting it figured out. My amps don't have a lot of "tone" range (bass/mid/treble) but I have a modeling amp that allows me to switch between british amps, california amps, "hot" amps, overdriven amps, what have you. These have different EQ effects that are NOT adjustable. I find that I prefer certain amp "styles" with the Strat & different "styles" with the SG. Try out a couple of different amps at the local music shop. A few more degrees of freedom may help you find something that works for you.

 

Good Luck

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So after the last rehersal, I was ready to put the thing on ebay. Just could not get a decent rhythm sound. So........ Heres the last try before I dump this chump. Putting in a 57 classic in the bridge position........ Leaving in the neck pu but putting in a push/pull to split the coils for rhythm playing. Might make a good combo when both pups are on........ also 500k vol pots.....Really want this to work. Will let you guys know. Thanks for the suggestions.

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Ok.......... finally happy with my sg standard tone. took out the bridge pickup, put the neck pickup in the bridge position. Bought a 57 classic for the neck position, and 500k pots nfor the volumes. Pulled out the pc board and wired it old school........ Nice Sweat middle position rhythm tone, and lead for blues . Warm full neck position tone and a very flexible bridge tone that is responsive but not over the top.....Essentially 335ish without the big ole body of one...Just what I was hoping for....thanks to all who responded.......Sstill have to learn the amp settings that work best with this awsome guitar.

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Ok.......... finally happy with my sg standard tone. took out the bridge pickup, put the neck pickup in the bridge position. Bought a 57 classic for the neck position, and 500k pots nfor the volumes. Pulled out the pc board and wired it old school........ Nice Sweat middle position rhythm tone, and lead for blues . Warm full neck position tone and a very flexible bridge tone that is responsive but not over the top.....Essentially 335ish without the big ole body of one...Just what I was hoping for....thanks to all who responded.......Sstill have to learn the amp settings that work best with this awsome guitar.

 

Rock! Glad the 57 is working out for you. That is my favorite humbucker. Not a fan of any of the 490 series pickups.

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I have been mainly a Strat Player, but my LP has a 57 in the neck and a Dimarzio super 1 in the bridge. My S G is stock. I play through a 2002 Fender Hot Rod Deluxe and the Stock S G Standard pickups sound awesome... I play pro, classic rock and blues..My 2.

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With regards setting the amp up this might help - ensure guitar volume knobs are full up and tone on guitar about 7 or 8

 

 

1) Turn the Amp Gain knob right down

2) Put all tone controls at 12 oclock

3) Turn the volume knob up to say 12 oclock or at least a volume where the tubes will be working hard

4) Start turning the Gain knob up

5) Stop turning the Gain up when you get the most overdriven sound youll need or want. Turning down the volume knob on the guitar will clean up the sound if u need less overdrive on a particular song.

6)Tweak the Amp EQ settings to your liking.

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