How does guitar volume knob affect on tone?

Discussion in 'Luthier's Guitar & Bass Technical Discussion' started by JohnHorne, Aug 18, 2008.

  1. JohnHorne

    JohnHorne Member

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    Jul 16, 2007
    Location:
    Athens, Ohio
    I like to mess with the guitar's volume knob a lot to adjust the tone (yes, the volume knob - not the tone knob!) I do this with overdrive, but I especially like the sound my jazz archtop when I roll the volume knob down to about 2-3. I find that I can get close to a classic Jim Hall/Joe Pass vibe happening this way and I can generally then crank up the amp and retain whatever change in tone the volume knob is making, but I need a pretty loud amp to make it happen in some performance situations. Opening the volume knob up all the way sounds okay, but sometimes sounds too much like a solidbody electric for lack of a better description.

    So my questions are:

    1. What exactly is happening to the guitar tone as I roll off the volume? This is something I've never really understood.

    and:

    2. Is there another way to achieve similar results with EQ or whatnot? Probably not, huh?
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  2. JohnHorne

    JohnHorne Member

    Messages:
    130
    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2007
    Location:
    Athens, Ohio
    YES! That's what I'm talking about. Jim Hall's sound is sooo perfect.

    Thanks for the link - I'll check it out!
     
  3. walterw

    walterw Gold Supporting Member

    Messages:
    34,234
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    Oct 16, 2006
    hell yeah, work that volume knob! that's where all the rest of the sounds in your amp are!

    i like it best in amps that get thicker and darker as they get fed more signal, like marshalls, so that turning down results in a nice bright clean tone.
     

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