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> How Important Is Learning About Gear?
shellshock1911
post Jan 16 2008, 02:04 AM
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I can play pretty well and I know my theory to back up playing, but I see all these people talking about how they want to tweak their tone and what pedals are good and 50x watt, connect the transistor to the xmachinex then have two plugs coming around and then into...

So yea I don't really know anything about gear at all, all I know is that when I plug my guitar into an amp, it makes amplified sounds and I know how to change from distorted to clean and all, but I don't really know what the effects actually do such as flanger, chorus, delay, etc.

So I was just wondering is it important to know how gear works and about how to fix gear to get the best sound and all because as of right now, like I said, I have no idea on any of this stuff. I've always thought gear was secondary to actual playing, but I don't know.

EDIT: I also don't know any good gear models or anything like that. How do you guys know what is good without spending loads of money buying random stuff? I have no clue on recording or anything like that either, but I want to try out in a collaboration soon, but like I said, I have no idea what is going on.

This post has been edited by shellshock1911: Jan 16 2008, 02:06 AM


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skennington
post Jan 16 2008, 02:14 AM
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Man, even as a beginner, I'm searching for my tone. I suggest you go to your local guitar shop and sit down and try dif amps with on-board effects to see what each one is. I personaly like my settings with a little chorus/delay with a little reverb and full gain. It all depends on the style your wanting to play. Tube amps are king! I have a solid state marshall half-stack that try's to mimic tube sound but nothing like all tube tone. If you are content with your sound, then don't try any effects cause you will never stop searching! tongue.gif

I'm at a point now where I can't stop dragging my thumb when picking. I just love the sound. So it is going to tease you to play with the effects every time you sit down to practice.


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fatb0t
post Jan 16 2008, 04:01 AM
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Oh man! You're missing out, gear is one of the best parts of playing guitar!
There was a time when I was literally addicted to eBay. I used to buy every different type of pedal I could afford. I had like 30 different pedals.
I would sell 1 pedal to buy another.

I got my Mesa Boogie now and a PodXT so those days are gone finally.

Anways, do check some out - sometimes you plug in a pedal and you connect. When I connect I will immediately write a song. Maybe the same for you.

Good luck dude
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shellshock1911
post Jan 16 2008, 04:04 AM
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QUOTE (fatb0t @ Jan 16 2008, 04:01 AM) *
Oh man! You're missing out, gear is one of the best parts of playing guitar!
There was a time when I was literally addicted to eBay. I used to buy every different type of pedal I could afford. I had like 30 different pedals.
I would sell 1 pedal to buy another.

I got my Mesa Boogie now and a PodXT so those days are gone finally.

Anways, do check some out - sometimes you plug in a pedal and you connect. When I connect I will immediately write a song. Maybe the same for you.

Good luck dude


TBH I don't know. I've only ever had one amp and no effects and couple guitars. I don't really see a big problem with the tone so I haven't bothered trying to get anything new, but I hear this PodXT thing is good, I'll have to see.

I'm usually not comfortable trying out stuff in a guitar shop, for some reason I feel that I sound like total crap in the ears of everyone else sad.gif. I'll have to come in with a plan next time then because usually my mind just goes blank and I end up playing stuff that sounds like...crap.


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SLASH91
post Jan 16 2008, 04:09 AM
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If you want to get to know what effects make a certain sound, I'd seriously recommend buying a multieffects pedal. I had one, and it really helped expand my knowledge of different sounds.


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Tjchep
post Jan 16 2008, 04:15 AM
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Gear will make a good player sound alot better.

But a bad player will still sound bad, so it not NEARLY as important as playing the guitar, I'd say 90+% comes from your fingers, the rest lies in your equipment.

To much to try out honestly, you just have to go and try out as uch as you can.


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ch00ch00man
post Jan 16 2008, 04:35 AM
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if i was to come up with an analogy, it sounds like your saying, hey i like hamburger. i know there all these different foods out there, but, i just like hamburger. to each his/her own i guess, but variety is the spice of life i say. same goes with music. i used to just play unamplified guitar, until a buddy said, hey you will never find your tone like that. he was right. tone is not about gear. its about a combination of gear and musician. gear is definitely part of it, but you add that something unique.

go out there and investigate. oh, and about not wanting to play at the music store, screw them. its your money, if they don't like it, you can always take your business elsewhere. a good business knows how to cultivate a clientèle, and make them feel comfortable, and welcome.

boris
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MickeM
post Jan 16 2008, 09:35 AM
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I think it's more important to know how to work the gear you've got that to know about a lot of stuff.

Then I think there are some basics you should know that will impove your tone and that are commonly used.
Knowing that
- Reverb will add "room"
- Delay will sound great for solo
- An EQ with raised mids will cut better during a solo, also use it to boost your tone while soloing.
- Learn how to play a Wah, that's one cool piece of stuff you should learn how to use.
- An overdrive is used to increase the signal and push a tube amp (works like distortion on solid state, generally sounds the same in the end)

Sit down with your amp and turn all the knobs to find out what they actually do, like bass/mid/tre/presence
and any other knobs you may have.

If you know your amp and the basic effects I mentioned you've come a long way. Like fab0t you can exchange your 30 pedals for a POD or VAMP or similar... or a Mesa depending on the amount of pedals you have wink.gif


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Ivan Milenkovic
post Jan 16 2008, 10:57 AM
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Almost every pro player will tell you to know your gear and your instrument inside and out. You have to tweak it, and know every bit of sound you can make from it. Know how different amps work, and what pedals give better sounds etc. Unfortunately many of us are not in the position to know all the gear - only the one that we play a lot, like in studio or our own gear, but you can go to the shops on regular basis, tryout everything, read on the net, listen to the samples and try your best to see what is the quality tone and what not.


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Robin
post Jan 16 2008, 11:04 AM
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I have the same problem, so I kinda embarrass myself at gigs sometimes. Haha.


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Paul Coutts
post Jan 16 2008, 11:51 AM
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To be honest, I don't think it matters what gear you use. You find something that you like and are comfortable with and leave it there. Your ears will develop as you keep searching for that tone. I keep moving from my Smashbox to my Metal Zone, depending on my mood. But honestly, GREAT gear will not make you sound any better. Play with you gear, know your gear, and you'll be good biggrin.gif
If you can play with crappy gear, you'll sound AWESOME with good gear.
But as for learning about your gear, I'd say it's important to know the basics, as in how much treble adjustment is enough etc....learn to listen smile.gif


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Goliath
post Jan 16 2008, 01:55 PM
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DOn't be shy about playing. If you're considering buying, put the gear through it's paces. Think of the techniques you like to use the most then test the gear out for them. Play long ringing chords to check sustain, play shreddy runs to check clarity/responsiveness, play gallops/fast rhythm pieces to check low-end responsiveness, play pinch harmonics/natural harmonics (dive bombs, etc). These would all be more for test driving guitars/amps but same holds true with pedals, but I've never tried to pull a pedal off the shelf and play with it.


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Muris Varajic
post Jan 16 2008, 04:55 PM
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Yeah,knowing your gear is really great thing.
And as many said before,you can just go into music store and spend few hours(each day biggrin.gif )
trying different stuff,pedals,amps,efxs etc.
Then you'll find what you like the most and get it sooner or latter. wink.gif
About how the gear works.
Well,I know basic things but when something goes wrong I just take to a guy to fix it,
I'm not that good in fixing gear,all I can do is remove battery and things like that laugh.gif biggrin.gif wink.gif


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Fran
post Jan 16 2008, 06:55 PM
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QUOTE (SLASH91 @ Jan 16 2008, 04:09 AM) *
If you want to get to know what effects make a certain sound, I'd seriously recommend buying a multieffects pedal. I had one, and it really helped expand my knowledge of different sounds.


+1

Get some multieffects and play with it, you could read about delay, chorus, reverbs, etc for a year or discover yourself what all those words really do with your tone!

It will definitely make your playing experience better cool.gif


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Juan M. Valero
post Jan 16 2008, 10:27 PM
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IMO gear is really important, so don't worry if you spend lot of hours (or days or weeks) with your gear. After all your sound is your own personality and it makes you a different player wink.gif


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Tjchep
post Jan 17 2008, 04:23 AM
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QUOTE (Milenkovic Ivan @ Jan 16 2008, 10:57 AM) *
Almost every pro player will tell you to know your gear and your instrument inside and out. You have to tweak it, and know every bit of sound you can make from it. Know how different amps work, and what pedals give better sounds etc. Unfortunately many of us are not in the position to know all the gear - only the one that we play a lot, like in studio or our own gear, but you can go to the shops on regular basis, tryout everything, read on the net, listen to the samples and try your best to see what is the quality tone and what not.


I'm going to have to dissagree with most cases, some pro's do know their gear inside and out, other dont even know how to change a pickup (Vai), and most still have guitar techs to do all their stuff, besides when they are obviously needed in live shows.


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Muris Varajic
post Jan 17 2008, 12:44 PM
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QUOTE (Tjchep @ Jan 17 2008, 04:23 AM) *
I'm going to have to dissagree with most cases, some pro's do know their gear inside and out, other dont even know how to change a pickup (Vai), and most still have guitar techs to do all their stuff, besides when they are obviously needed in live shows.


Well,Ivan said almost every pro player which means Vai out biggrin.gif


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Tjchep
post Jan 17 2008, 06:45 PM
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QUOTE (Muris @ Jan 17 2008, 12:44 PM) *
Well,Ivan said almost every pro player which means Vai out biggrin.gif


I know, I was just saying, they still have guitar techs most of them.

But hell if I really know what I'm talking about smile.gif.

This post has been edited by Tjchep: Jan 17 2008, 06:45 PM


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Kevin98497
post Jan 17 2008, 08:57 PM
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i would personnally suggest stay away from learning anything bout it, because ud probably end up spending more time looking on intetnet bout gear than actually playing the guitar lol
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Tomy Jeon
post Jan 17 2008, 10:49 PM
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QUOTE (kevin-riff-after-riff @ Jan 18 2008, 08:57 AM) *
i would personnally suggest stay away from learning anything bout it, because ud probably end up spending more time looking on intetnet bout gear than actually playing the guitar lol


That happened to me for a few days biggrin.gif

But knowledge is power and any information you can digest is helpful.


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