Guitar Tone Control? How "well" do you use it?

Discussion in 'Effects, Pedals, Strings & Things' started by rawkguitarist, Jul 5, 2008.

  1. rawkguitarist

    rawkguitarist Member

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    I think I've come to this conclusion before, but I'm back to it again. I've always set my guitar amps to the right high end to match my bridge pickup, but always wish my neck pickup had more clarity for some parts.

    Hence my conclusion: I'm going to start setting my treble on my amps for my neck pickup set with the guitar's tone all the way up and mainly ride my bridge pickup with the tone rolled down about 50%.

    This just opens up so many more tonal colors, right from my 3 guitar controls, than my old way.

    Who else has actually discovered the guitar tone control? (like me after 20 years of play'n guitar...) :BEER
     
  2. Rob Eadgbe

    Rob Eadgbe Member

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    Yes that's probably the smart way to set things up. I roll the tone knob down on my strat's bridge pickup, to about 6 and a half maybe seven. But what I use as my "base tone" is the bridge and middle pickups together with the tone knob dimed. I spend most of an average night playing with bridge and middle for rhythm. It's a little bit of a compromise when I do use the neck pickup, but not muddy enough that it gets in the way.

    I dime the tone control with humbuckers. When I think about it though, I don't often use the neck pickup alone on any of my humbucker guitars.
     
  3. madscientist

    madscientist Member

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    I've got some pickups that I have to install, but besides that, I WILL be adding a bridge pup tone control. I can probably get rid of a pedal off my board once that's done, so I won't have two similar pedals set for the bridge/neck.

    Honestly, I'm not quite sure why the bridge tone control isn't standard on all strats. I barely change the tone on the middle pup.
     
  4. improviduto

    improviduto Member

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    I use the tone control on my tele all the time. It's either at 100% or 60% (or the screw facing parallel to the strings), depending on what I'm doing. However, like you, I adjust an amp to my neck pickup at full tone. It all seems to work better that way because I can just cut the tone when on the bridge if I find it too harsh.
     
  5. crzyfngers

    crzyfngers Member

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    what is this tone control you speak of? you're saying there's one on my guitar??
     
  6. shredtrash

    shredtrash Supporting Member

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    I don't use it so I guess "poorly". I do use my blender pot on my Strat though. Does that count?
     
  7. sabby

    sabby Member

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    I also have a blender pot, so I can relate. With the neck mixed in at about 15%, it attenuates the attack but still allows for the sparkle on sustain. I often find myself setting the blender to about 30% and switching back and forth b/n the neck and bridge for rhythm. Great for chimey Beatles/Petty like tones. I end up using the the middle for punchy/lead tones.

    As for the tone, I never used it until I got a .1uf cap on there. Lesser values seem to do nothing until the tone's muffled. The .1 rolls of the top at a lower point and allows me to get decent jazzy tones off of the neck -- set to sparkle at full volume and tone -- and it can tame the bridge pretty well. I also dig the fact that tone controls act like a gain attenuator, especially in guitar>cord>amp set ups, taking off some sizzle yet maintaining the same volume.
     
  8. RC2

    RC2 Silver Supporting Member

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    I generally set up off my neck pick up with the tone set at about 7 and volume at 8. I usually make slight adjustments up or down on every song and this seems to give me the most control without having to mess with the amp.
     
  9. Scott Auld

    Scott Auld Staff Member

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    I live and breathe by the control knobs on the guitar, including both the tone, volume and p/u selector.

    That's why they're there :):D

    I wonder if this bothers the sound man.
     
  10. waylay00

    waylay00 Member

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    I use the tone control on my Strat a lot for the bridge pickup. I don't really use it that much elsewhere though. On my superstrats, the tone is usually full all the time.
     
  11. Hugo Da Rosa

    Hugo Da Rosa Silver Supporting Member

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    I think, as you mentioned, setting your amp according to your neck pickup is a great way to do it. I typically set my amp and effects according to my neck pick up and roll down my tone knob on the bridge when I choose to use it. I use StewMac's Golden Age PAF style humbuckers in my LP and they can be very bright with Alnico 5 magnets. I also have .022 PIO caps in there so I usually roll the tone knob on my bridge pup somewhere around 6-8. It's usually around 8 on the neck pup but that depends on how muddy or clear it sounds the day i'm playing.
     
  12. dividedsky

    dividedsky Member

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    I don't know, I always leave it on 10.
     
  13. fishlog

    fishlog Member

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    I use that Blender wiring as well. I actually don't blend in any other PUPS with any setting but have found that having a master tone is great. Its easy to roll up or down on the fly but I seem to be pretty happy with it around 8. It lets my Neck and Middle sound nice and clear and takes the bite off the bridge.
     
  14. crzyfngers

    crzyfngers Member

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    i took the tone controls off my s500. just a volume and a couple of switches. too much to think about.
     
  15. Blues Lyne

    Blues Lyne Member

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    I tend to set up my strat tones with volume and both tones on 8, and using the neck pup. That way I have room to adjust up or down on any setting. I tend to work the volume control more during songs. The tone controls tend to get set for the sounds I want for a song and left there for the whole song.
    My strat has a tone for neck and middle and a tone for bridge.
     
  16. rawkguitarist

    rawkguitarist Member

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    Yeah, I think the key is to have room to move both ways, not just one... like my old way. :RoCkIn
     
  17. Scott Auld

    Scott Auld Staff Member

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    That's what EVH did.
     
  18. 12345678

    12345678 Senior Member

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    I have always felt that strats sounded really bad unless everything was on 10. Gibson guitars can sound great when you play with the tone controls. For most purposes, wide open is the best to my ears.
     
  19. Lolaviola

    Lolaviola Supporting Member

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    I have always thought the opposite.
     
  20. Dave Orban

    Dave Orban Gold Supporting Member

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    Took me YEARS to figure out that there was a whole sonic palette out there, just from turning those little volume and tone knobs on your guitar...!
     

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