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Guitar for EVERY SOUND?

doghouseman

Senior Member
Messages
3,045
I am in a coverband. We play everything reggae and Ozzy. I need one guitar that will do it all (I know this is impossible, but I a willing to give it a try). I don't want to switch guitars and I don't want to play a modeling guitar.

I would like to put a good combination of pickups into a Strat that will give me a wide variety of tones.

I was thinking of a HHH combination. I was thinking the middle could be super hot for metal stuff. But that means I also need to split it to get the out-of-phase Strat sounds of position 2 and 4 and that might not work well.

I could make the bridge super hot and then go for the out of phase sounds in position 2.

So, a super hot pickup like a custom custom? I don't think I want to go active.

Maybe the middle humbucker would be a less hot pickup then I could do more classic rock with that. Then have the front humbucker for clean. I would almost rather have a single coil for clean. So maybe a SHH setup?

Right now I have a Stevie Via Evolution HSH setup. And it will do a lot of different sounds. Just wondering if I could improve upon this and get even more sounds from a Strat.

Anyone have the SD everything axe pickup combo? I was looking at that, but it doesn't look like any of those pickups are really all that hot.
 

dirk_benedict

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
6,479
My opinion: all you need is an HSS strat and you are good. I've got a similar range of needs in my cover gig and a strat with a JBjr works very well. Add the right dirt pedal (and/or amp) and you are all set.

Personally, three humbuckers each with splitting options sounds like a dizzying array of options to deal with in a live situation. Having gone down this route before, it seems the perceived increment in sound you get isn't worth the amount of "stuff" you have to keep track of, IMHO. Heck, I've had fun lately doing this gig with a Cabronita and extensive use of the volume and tone knobs. You can make it work if you want to, as long as the bridge pickup is hot enough to really get the hi-gain crunch.
 

robmarch

Member
Messages
1,013
I would recommend really trying to account for how many unique sounds you need. for example:

1. bridge humbucker - let pedals and amp settings take it from edge of breakup to 80's metal
2. bright single - coil split bridge humbucker? or use a middle single and maybe some EQ?
3. warm clean neck sound - prefer humbucker or single? coil split?
4. neck gain sound? prefer humbucker or single? coil split?
5. strat notch sounds - do you need both, or can you get away with neck/middle?

I would think that you could cover a lot of ground with either an HSS or HSH setup.

the evolution setup is the right idea, but the individual pickups may not be really suited for your music. something a little less in your face in an HSH wired similarly would be more flexible. I've always been an HH guy over an HSH guy, but the array of sounds Guthrie Govan gets from his Suhr HSH in the demo videos is really pretty tempting.

also, I'm not sure your pickups really need to be that hot to get the sounds you mention, if you are considering the everything axe.
 

noisebloom

Member
Messages
1,362
Steve Morse's original EBMM sig guitar is one of the most versatile electric guitars I've ever heard. He likens it to a Swiss Army knife.

 

Oldschool59

Member
Messages
1,890
Suhr Modern, HSH config, blower switch. Doesn't get more versatile than that. Check out Guthrie Govan's Youtube demos for the same.

 

Razorface

Senior Member
Messages
993
My opinion: all you need is an HSS strat and you are good. I've got a similar range of needs in my cover gig and a strat with a JBjr works very well. Add the right dirt pedal (and/or amp) and you are all set.

Personally, three humbuckers each with splitting options sounds like a dizzying array of options to deal with in a live situation. Having gone down this route before, it seems the perceived increment in sound you get isn't worth the amount of "stuff" you have to keep track of, IMHO. Heck, I've had fun lately doing this gig with a Cabronita and extensive use of the volume and tone knobs. You can make it work if you want to, as long as the bridge pickup is hot enough to really get the hi-gain crunch.
This.
 

kludge

The droid you're looking for
Messages
7,104
I think it's more a matter of changing your expectations.

You have two conditions. First, you're in a cover band with a wide variety of material. Second, you don't want to switch guitars. Now, there's a hidden third implication, which is that you want to nail the cover sounds more or less perfectly. Give that one up, and your job becomes much easier.

Instead of finding a guitar that somehow sounds like both Bob Marley and Zakk Wylde, find a guitar that sounds like you, something that is maximally tonally comfortable for you. Play the parts well on a great guitar that you love, and really, nobody in the audience will notice the little tonal differences. What they will notice is that you're really rocking it!
 






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