Is this cone cry or a ghost note? And what, if anything, can be done about it?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by Scooter, Sep 14, 2008.

  1. Scooter

    Scooter Member

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    I just spent a good chunk of the morning searching this site and others for information about ghost notes and cone cry, but I'm still not clear on what is happening here. I noticed this problem during a tune at last nights gig and it was pretty startling.

    Symptom: I played an oblique bend (upward) on the G and B strings at the 14th fret. Although the bend was an upward bend, I heard a low frequency note going downward, sort of a 'zippering' or farty noise.

    Rig: Dr. Z Stang Ray running pretty clean with an MI Audio Crunch Box in front of it to get a high gain tone. 2x12 cab with Celestion G12/V30 combo.

    From what I've described, am I getting cone cry or a ghost note from the amp itself?

    I've read that Celestions can do the cone cry thing. I should point out though that I heard this same thing once before using the same amp and pedal into a 1x12 housing a Weber Alnico. I've also read that Weber's are known to do cone cry. But this also leaves me wondering if it's the amp itself since I've experienced the noise with two different cabs.

    Could replacing the power tubes and/or phase inverter help this (if it's the amp)?

    I set my amp up so that it yields a pretty full and round tone with my Tele bridge pickup. As such, the amp is set to produce more bass than what may be typical. Could the problem simply be that I'm running a high-gain Crunch Box in front of an amp that is set to be too bassy?
     
  2. xk49w

    xk49w Member

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    Depending on the pitches you were playing, that could be the difference frequency. A mixing product created in a non-linearity in the amp, speaker, or even your hearing.
     
  3. rockon1

    rockon1 Member

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    If the amp is cranked up ( full volume) Im going with ghost notes from the amp. My rivera does this when I crank it up. Bob
     
  4. Rod

    Rod Tone is Paramount Silver Supporting Member

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    Hummm,,,sounds almost like it's filtering in your amp. The reason I say that is that cone cry usually follows the note. It doesn't change frequency direction......do you have another amp you can try your speakers with??
     
  5. gtrnstuff

    gtrnstuff Member

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    I'm with xk49w, except I call that phenomenon by the name "intermodulation distortion". Playing double stops (two notes) and bending one note like that will do it with any gainy tone I've used in the last 40 or so years:)
    Playing two notes high enough up the neck puts the intermodulation frequency up high enough to be heard as a low pitch coming thru the amp.

    Cone cry and power supply filtering ghost notes occur when playing only one note.
     
  6. Shawn S.

    Shawn S. Member

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    When I was first starting out, I asked my teacher what that vacuum noise was (I interpreted it as a vacuum noise) I thought it was cool, and wanted to know how to do it...

    It took him a minute to figure out what I was talking about (because I noticed it when he was playing).

    Regarding the original topic, I have never heard of cone cry or ghosting. But I want to know what it sounds like. Are there any definitive clips online of it? I'm sure if I heard it, I'd recognize it.
     
  7. Shawn S.

    Shawn S. Member

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    :bounce
     
  8. Scooter

    Scooter Member

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  9. rog951

    rog951 Member

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    Listen to the end of the solo in "Working Man" by Rush. Is it like that? If so, that's just audio physics...and rock 'n' roll! ;)

    Edit: shoulda said "end of the SONG". Here's a link, starting around 6:40: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h59mDlBSt7o
     
    Last edited: Feb 6, 2009
  10. riffmeister

    riffmeister Gold Supporting Member

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    Try bending the "D" at the 7th fret on the G string. If you hear an off-harmonic note that changes in pitch as you bend the fretted note, it's a ghost note from the amp. I had a similar experience with a DR Z amp. It is the filtering and it can be modified a bit to reduce ghosting. But too much filtering will change the character of the amp.

    My experience with cone cry is when playing a note up high on the fretboard, usually between the 12-15th fret on the high E string, one of those notes will produce an additional pitch exactly one octave lower in pitch than the fretted note.
     
  11. Thepilot

    Thepilot Member

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    sounds like cone cry to me- at least in my understanding of what cone cry is, and where/how it occurs.

    it's almost always on a bend in the upper register of the instrument. so yeah, it's cone cry. it's more of a speaker issue and not an amp issue.

    i've never heard anyone else say this, but i find it to be more prominent in closed-back cabs. if you're doing a recording and just don't want that note in there you could try removing the back and see if that makes it go away.

    i personally don't find it annoying- in a band context it's almost always swallowed by the mix. i don't do much recording, so i'm well aware that it could be different.

    hope that helps some.

    short answer: yes it's cone cry, there's really nothing you can do about it.
     
  12. freaksho

    freaksho Member

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    well, lalaland's example did not work for me but i must say it was super cool to listen to Working Man again!
    god, i remember that reverse bend overtone like 1980 was yesterday (when i first heard it).
     
  13. Jahn

    Jahn Listens to Johnny Marr, plays like John Denver Supporting Member

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    Amazing night last night. I remember reading about tired speakers on TGP, and thinking I had one before due to rattleflab sounds when i pushed my amp, I swapped the speaker out with a Jensen MOD which is a nice speaker indeed, but not yet broken in so a bit tight. The original Celestion Gold Bulldog really sounded great at low levels, but it would rattle.

    And then it hit me. Mounting screws. When I swapped out the Jensen, the screws were pretty loose so I tightened them up. What if I had them that tight for the original Celestion?


    So I swapped the original speaker back in, tightened them all up using the X-pattern tighten by hand with a quarter more turn on each with pliers - and the speaker had no rattle, no soft part warble, nothing - it was perfect. DANG.

    So now I have a spare MOD and speaker cable just in case, I'll keep them around as backup but it's nice to know I can keep my amp sounding the way I like, ready to go!
     
  14. kimock

    kimock Member

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    If you get that downward sweeping frequency when you bend two notes at the same time, but not with one bent note, that's in the sound of the strings together. You're playing that! Ouch.

    If you get that down sweep with one bent string with the amp turned up, but not with the amp turned down, it's "ghost note".
    Same basic idea as the double stop bend, just that now you're sweeping the pitch you're playing relative to the Bb ish 60 cycle hum of your struggling amp.

    If you get a new unrelated pitch or noise with the amp turned up when you play a high note, bent or not, and it goes away when you turn down, that's speaker "cone cry".

    The first one you just have to learn to control or ignore. That's you doing that.
    The second one, if it really gives you a rash, new or more filter caps. Some guys like that sound. If you "fix" that, it will change the sound of the amp somewhat.
    The third one, turn down, or add a speaker to share the power, or get a new speaker that doesn't misbehave at your normal playing volume.

    Of course it's possible to have all those things going on at the same time, or a little of each at different times, but the description in your example sounds like combination tones (my 1st example) to me.
     

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