Fed up with Strobostomp ? Here is a guide to using it to its potential.

Discussion in 'Effects, Pedals, Strings & Things' started by BryanMatthews, Mar 1, 2008.

  1. BryanMatthews

    BryanMatthews Member

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    The strobostomp is a fickle piece of gear that takes some getting used to, there is no way this can be denied ...........but once the user gets a grasp on how to use it, you wouldnt use anything else.

    I own a strobostomp and a VSII myself and had to go through the learning curve of utilising them properly. Ive read on TGP members slamming the petersons for one thing or another and I definitely think it stems from not using them in the correct fashion.

    For intonation there aint nothing better.............period !!

    You set up your guitar with a strobostomp and then anything else and you can hear the difference as if it were right in front of your nose. When you set intonation using a peterson and you want your guitar inhumanly in tune :

    DONT set the guitar flat on a workbench .
    DO hold the instrument in a playing position, I do it an armchair.
    DO set your guitar to neck pickup and roll the tone completely OFF
    DONT use a pick to sound notes
    DONT sound notes forcefully with your fingers.

    Sound an open string harmonic at fret 12 with the tip of your index finger and simply drag it across very gently as the tuner is super sensitive and that is all you need, plucking with force just gives a reading that is no good for setting intonation. Tune the open string 12th fret harmonic until the bars scroll DOWNWARDS and the far left is almost at a standstill and far right are moving ever so very slowly , but still in DOWNWARD direction. At this point your open string is very in-tune and you shouldnt have a situation where the bars start to head UPWARDS. Next fret the note at 12th fret with a featherlight touch using your index finger tip once more , take care not to push the string upwards or downwards as this will give an improper reading.

    VERY IMPORTANT : When you are fretting the 12th fret harmonic or fretted note, ensure the palm of your fretting hand is NOT in contact with the neck of the instrument , only the tip of the fretting finger. Petersons are ruthlessly accurate and holding the neck is enough to skew the readings the tuner gives you.

    Im a Les Paul player , so when I fret the note at the 12th fret , if the bars on the tuner scroll upwards, the screw at the bridge is turned counter-clockwise, if they scroll downwards , turn it clockwise. You will eventually find that you have it so the fretted note has the bars scrolling DOWNWARDS with outer left side virtually stopped and outer right moving at a snails pace. Always ensure if you too use an Les Paul ABR1 type bridge, that once you move a saddle either back or forth, that you take the blade of your screwdriver and put it behind that saddle and push it in direction of headstock for stability.

    If this procedure is carried out on all strings , your guitar will be so in tune with itself it will scare you . I couldnt envisage using any other tuner and there are a lot of players out there with similar feeling.

    Finally...............always always always do this procedure with out of the packet NEW strings that you have given a good stretching in, anything else and you are wasting your time.

    I hope this thread is of use to those considering selling on their Strobostomp.

    Bryan:BEER
     
  2. chuck

    chuck Member

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    Which way is down?
    I use a Stroborack and it goes left or right.
     
  3. Frenster

    Frenster Put your Rock Face on!

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    I don't think too many people have issues with the quality of the tuning, only the quality of the build. I've noticed crackling jacks when I use it off my board, where it's on a side chain. I wouldn't mind putting in better jacks.

    Works like a charm for me.
     
  4. Redhouse-Blues

    Redhouse-Blues Member

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    I agree with all of what you said, but suggest using a pick. Myself and the pro setup guys I know all use a pick and keep picking until it's tuned. On my Strat's, I roll the volume and tone down about 1/2 way and use the neck pickup and I can get the Strobostomp to come to almost a stop, pause for a second or more. Also, the guitar cable counts, I noticed a noisy cable I have, one that makes noise when you move it around while plugged into an amp, caused the reading to not stop. I used a better cable, a Dimarzio and it worked great.

    I was one of the guys that posted a thread about the Strobostomp and thing's I didn't care for a few days after getting it, but now over a month later, I love the thing!
     
  5. Ben C.

    Ben C. Member

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    Never had a problem with the learning curve... I don't think there really is one and it always confuses me when people "can't work it". I started with a VS-II, bought a SS1 when they came out, and bought an SS2 when they came out. Never had to do any 'tricks' to get them to read notes properly. Never had to switch to a neck pickup, face East, say "DADGAD" 3 times and do the hokey pokey. I just plugged in, turned on, and tuned. No problems.

    The reliability finally killed my love affair with Petersons though. What good is a great tuner if it kills your sound or doesn't work? So I ultimately moved on to a Sonic Research Turbo Tuner... I think you'd like it. Just as feature laden as the Peterson, cheaper, catches notes faster, and is more accurate.

    -Ben
     
  6. StompBoxBlues

    StompBoxBlues Member

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    I disagree...I use a pick, I continue hitting the notes (otherwise they ring out, but change pitch on decay and with an ultra sensitive strobe like this that would be misleading) since I hit notes in succession much more than I let them ring out. I think you tune how you play.

    Also, why in the world would one roll tone control all the way off?
     
  7. Frenster

    Frenster Put your Rock Face on!

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    Actually, rolling the tone off gets rid of upper harmonics, so the tone is more pure and easy for the tuner to read.

    I usually use a pick to tune. Buzz Feiten says to tune to the initial attack, not the decay for the same reason StompBoxBlues says. There are some great tuning tips on the Feiten site.
     
  8. BillyK

    BillyK Supporting Member

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    "VERY IMPORTANT : When you are fretting the 12th fret harmonic or fretted note, ensure the palm of your fretting hand is NOT in contact with the neck of the instrument , only the tip of the fretting finger. Petersons are ruthlessly accurate and holding the neck is enough to skew the readings the tuner gives you."

    Been using a Peterson for a long time now with excellent results. Here's a question:
    Shouldn't you use the same pressure holding down the note, with your left hand in it's proper position in whatever way you hold the neck, in order for the guitar to play in tune when you play the guitar? Why should the pressure be different, and why should you not hold the neck? Theoritically I get it, but it doesn't seem practical.
     
  9. BryanMatthews

    BryanMatthews Member

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    I do it in the way I outlined because it singles out the fretted note in isolation and absolutely nothing else that can skew what the tuner is telling you. Ive had terrific results using this method, when you hit a chord it just rings as true as Ive heard. Thanks for pitching in on the thread dude.

    Bryan:BEER
     
  10. BillyK

    BillyK Supporting Member

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    I'll try it.
    Thanks Bryan.
     
  11. BryanMatthews

    BryanMatthews Member

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    do let me know how it works or perhaps doesnt work for you billy.

    Bryan
     
  12. Macaroni

    Macaroni Member

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    I use the neck pickup with the volume at about 5, with the tone at 10, pick moderately with my finger, and sometimes even a pick, and I can get the spinning layers to stop moving in seconds - no problems at all.

    The jacks were identified as being a weak link long ago, and the latest SS has better jacks, but if you leave it on your board, there shouldn't be too much use of the jacks. I've had no problems with my SS and I've had one since the first day they came out.

    The Sonic Research tuner looks nice, but it isn't a board unit, so it's not much use to me.
     
  13. Ben C.

    Ben C. Member

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    I only use the Sonic Research Turbo Tuner for setups, it's not on the board! I like stompable tuners too.
    Sonic Research is coming out with a stompbox version in June / July.

    -Ben
     
  14. BryanMatthews

    BryanMatthews Member

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    so what is this sonic research tuner giving you that strobostomp or VSII cant ben ?

    Bryan
     
  15. lifeinsong

    lifeinsong Member

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    I've had the original Strobostomp ever since it first came out...never a problem with the jacks, diplay, accuracy etc. I have a few guitars with the Feiten system and the SS works perfectly all the time.
     
  16. Ben C.

    Ben C. Member

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    I can't really put it head to head with the Strobostomp, because I don't want the TT on the board since it isn't a stompbox. So, vs. a VS-II, I like that it's smaller, has more buttons (rather than scrolling through menus), and it grabs notes noticeably more quickly. It's technically more accurate as well, but I don't hear a difference between the Peterson's +/- 0.1 cents vs. the Sonic Research's +/- 0.02 cents. Kinda nice that it's "only" $130 as well.

    Now, some people are using these on a board, and I have to say I would have liked it better if the SS's had more real buttons rather than menu trees. And the above would apply as well - it really does track notes basically as fast as you can play them and grabs them faster and accurately. I just hope that when they come out with the stompbox version of the TT they really take note of the SS issues and do everything in their power to make it as reliable as possible.

    -Ben
     
  17. BryanMatthews

    BryanMatthews Member

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    am i right in thinking ben there is no , strike note.....flat..sharp...flat...in tune.......sharp......flat.........that a boss tu2 tuner is plagued by ?

    Bryan
     
  18. Ben C.

    Ben C. Member

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    Correct. It's like the Peterson in regard to that sort of response - it will most likely read a little sharp if you whack the string, then slowly read a little flatter than the original reading immediately thereafter (which is, after all, what the string is doing). A light pick should be fine, and there is certainly no warbling from sharp to flat.

    -Ben
     
  19. walterw

    walterw Gold Supporting Member

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    +1 to intonating the same way you play, otherwise the guitar will be "perfect" when you sit up straight and hold your breath, but sharp when actually used on the gig.

    a sharpened attack followed by an in-tune sustain will sound sharp, while an in-tune attack followed by a slightly flat sustain will sound right, since most guitar playing is hitting the strings, not letting them ring out for seconds at a time..

    i use a turbo tuner on my board as well as on my repair bench, where it replaced a vs-II. the one on the board is split off with an a-b box, so signal loss and durability to foot-stomping is not an issue.
     
  20. BluePowder

    BluePowder Member

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    I've got one, the first issue in fact.

    I'm thinking of ditching it already. As accurate as it is, it's just too damn complicated to use.

    I'm pretty lucky though, I've got 3 friends whose strobo's LCDs all died on them.
     

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