Is amp sag a feel or a sound?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by Danny D, Aug 27, 2019.

  1. halcyon

    halcyon Member

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    It’s bof.
     
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  2. oneblackened

    oneblackened Member

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    Yes! This is true. It's related to the filtering of the power supply.

    Now - guitar amps don't use regulated power supplies. Never have, as far as I'm aware. Even modern tight high power metal amps use a very basic unregulated supply, except for things like relays or digital functionality (as they require it for proper operation). Why? Because regulated stiff voltage doesn't sound (or, well, "feel") good to us guitarists. The only regulation we've got is down to reservoir (filter) capacitors. Bigger capacitors can store more current, so bigger caps = better voltage regulation = less sag. Conversely, smaller caps = worse regulation = more sag.
     
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  3. teemuk

    teemuk Member

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    Amp's 'feel' is transferred by sound. Its about dynamic characteristics. If you can't hear them they might as well not exist. And sag and its effects are totally objectively quantifyable characteristics.
     
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  4. Humble Texan Fan

    Humble Texan Fan Member

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    Now "sag" is a bit like optical compression in that the sound ducks/ compresses when saturated - simple like that.

    We used to have a discussion on here where the OP could not separarate sound from feel. One just has to understand in what way one goes into the other.
     
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  5. braveheart

    braveheart Member

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    ..ok, depends on how high you crank it up...:)
     
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  6. oneblackened

    oneblackened Member

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    I always was of the opinion that it sounded more like vari-mu compression a la a Fairchild or Manley than optical, but that just goes to show everybody's ears are different.
     
  7. jimijimmyjeffy

    jimijimmyjeffy Member

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    I literally dime both volumes of my DS40, which is tube rectified as a jtm45 clone of sorts.

    No mud. It even has a fat bass response. No flub. In fact that is my favorite amp setting, to dime everything with low gain to get vintage crunch.

    So no, I would not generalize about tube rectification in quite that way. Perhaps you could say there is a tad bit more compression or clipping, and that the attack on bass notes is firmer, stiffer and very slightly cleaner with SS. But the amount of bass in the preamp that gets distorted is more of the factor with muddiness than tube rectification.
     
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  8. Vaibhav Joshi

    Vaibhav Joshi Member

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    I have played acoustic for 10 out of 12 years but across the spectrum. Touch sensitivity is what I seek from pedals playing through two SS amps.
    Play on neck HB/ SC most of the time.
    OCD is what all this means to me. Timmy has a faster response but works for jazz like tones because of the clarity & richness it adds.
    I have but for two occassions, never played through a tube amp. But I can relate to what everyone has thus far put in very unique words.
    Apart from high gain, it should be favourable in most other genres because it helps your expression overall.
    Nice. ;)
    Not for high gain/ palm muting. Maybe not for jazz/straight ahead kind of as well. On jazz amp threads, a lot of people seem to go for SS amps for the fast response & minimal needs.
    I haven't played with tube amps but I am not sure I can you hear the bloom.
    A member here, Tag, explained his experience with dumble amps. Interesting read.
    The dyna comp I use at minimal settings still takes the dynamics & sag away. I think the swampy sound you're talking about is something ImI not familiar with.
    Yeah, intriguing..
    My limited experience with a Line 6 POD Hd 400 concurs to some extent but I'd like to try the Helix et al.

    Excuse the spellings, my first post from a phone.
     
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2019
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  9. Tone_Terrific

    Tone_Terrific Supporting Member

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    Right.
    Amps have no feel, unless you try to pick one up.
    They have response to the guitar sourced signal and you have a response to the speaker sourced sound wave.
    So, don't say feel.
    Tell us what you hear i.e. slow/quick attack, limited headroom, raised noise floor, compression/lift of note tails, overall latency, etc., and actual details of what is going on.

    Don't throw your whole analysis into a bucket and call it 'feel.'
    It gets used endlessly to describe digi products that the user has decided not to like but the term has no fact based reasoning included in the description, even though there may be one.:fisticuffs
     
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  10. Brutus

    Brutus Member

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    Some amps let you dial in the amount of sag. My Peavey XXL does this with a switch. It’s easy to experience what it is this way.
     
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  11. vintagefox

    vintagefox Member

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    I wouldn't take it so literal.

    Even the words you use to describe what you hear can be subjective, so those "fact based" terms can also be quite pointless.

    At the end of the day, any given amp can mean something entirely different to any individual, regardless of how you describe it, so it doesn't make any sense to tell people how they should or how they shouldn't describe the tonal characteristics of an amplifier.
     
    Last edited: Aug 31, 2019
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  12. buzzard blues bird

    buzzard blues bird Member

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    News to me ,what feature does this on the amp ? Love me some saggy...er never mind.
     
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  13. slybird

    slybird Member

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    Amp SAG isn't something I can hear.
     
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  14. Brutus

    Brutus Member

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    A damping switch on the back. Tight, medium, or loose. Controls how long the speaker speaks. I’m with you on the saggy.
     
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  15. vintagefox

    vintagefox Member

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    The Hughes & Kettner Black Spirit actually has a sag knob.
     
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  16. Billy_B

    Billy_B Silver Supporting Member

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    A simple vintage/modern or old/new switch usually effects sag quite a bit.
    Old = more sag. :D
     
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  17. teemuk

    teemuk Member

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    Sorry, but speaker damping and power supply sag are two very different and unrelated effects.
     
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  18. Tone_Terrific

    Tone_Terrific Supporting Member

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    The whole topic is totally conflated, in common use.
    Anything that increases compression, clipping, inaccurate freq response, esp in the low end, less articulate speaker response, etc., gets tossed into the same category.
    It's about as technically viable as the misuse of 'gain' to describe all sorts of distortion characteristics.
    Accuracy and nuance is dumbed down to a generic buzzword.:bitch
     
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  19. Brutus

    Brutus Member

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    I’m sure they are, but what they sound like may be similar. Lots of overlap on opinions in here, so there doesn’t seem to be an aural consensus. The sound on the XXL goes from tight and defined to “loose” and bloomy. I don’t know of any other amps that have that switch, but it’s an interesting option to have. Essentially, what you’re playing has more of a hangover.
     
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2019
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  20. Billy_B

    Billy_B Silver Supporting Member

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    I'm calling Websters and challenging them to come up with a definitive 'Electric Guitarist Dictionary'.
     
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