Ok...what does "organic" sound like.

Discussion in 'Amps/Cabs Tech Corner: Amplifier, Cab & Speakers' started by Curt, Jan 5, 2006.


  1. Curt

    Curt Member

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    I keep reading about something sounding more "organic" than something else. What the hell does "organic" sound like?

    I've been wanting to ask this question for a while.
    How the hell can anything "sound" organic.
    Something might possibly taste organic, or might even smell or look more organic, but *sound* more organic????
     
  2. TheAmpNerd

    TheAmpNerd Member

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    Beats me.

    Perhaps natural might be a better word.


    How do you describe someone that plays with soul?
    The notes are all the same aren't they?
     
  3. scottosan

    scottosan Supporting Member

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    Well, why don't you supply us with a pre-approved list of descriptive words.
     
  4. hasserl

    hasserl Member

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    or·gan·ic [​IMG] ([FONT=verdana,sans-serif] P [/FONT]) Pronunciation Key (ôr-g[​IMG]n[​IMG][​IMG]k)
    adj.
    1. Of, relating to, or derived from living organisms: organic matter.
    2. Of, relating to, or affecting a bodily organ: an organic disease.
      1. Of, marked by, or involving the use of fertilizers or pesticides that are strictly of animal or vegetable origin: organic vegetables; an organic farm.
      2. Raised or conducted without the use of drugs, hormones, or synthetic chemicals: organic chicken; organic cattle farming.
      3. Serving organic food: an organic restaurant.
      4. Simple, healthful, and close to nature: an organic lifestyle.
      1. Having properties associated with living organisms.
      2. Resembling a living organism in organization or development; interconnected: society as an organic whole.
    3. Constituting an integral part of a whole; fundamental.
    4. Law. Denoting or relating to the fundamental or constitutional laws and precepts of a government or an organization.
    5. Chemistry. Of or designating carbon compounds.
     
  5. Curt

    Curt Member

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    scottosan

    Well, why don't you supply us with a pre-approved list of descriptive words.

    I'll put that on my "things to do for scottman list".
     
  6. Reeek

    Reeek Member

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    The problem with our hobby is how subjective it is . . .

    But here goes, I'll take the bait :eek:

    Tonally:
    I see organic as the opposite of an amp that sounds "sterile" (whoops, there's another one :D )
    I see organic as the opposite of solid state. I see it as the accepted difference between a real blackface Fender versus a real silverface Fender from the late 60's and early 70's.
    I see it as a tube amp that is not predictable all the time but seldom sucks (A good thing to me) such as the overtones and such that can be obtained by a hot tube amp with the knob cranked.

    Physically:
    I see organic as less contrived or forced. I see it as simple amp designs with great tonal results. An input jack and three knobs plugged straight in is the mental image.
    I see a simple amp with not much glare and not much shiney stuff on them. I see it as an amp without a MV or effects loop.

    Overall:
    I see it as low wattage tube amps (combos mostly but a small head with an open back cab) with light weight alnico speakers with an undoped cone, turned up as high as they will go versus a 5150, biased cold, through a 4x12 closed back cab . . .

    To me, it's all a perception.
     
  7. Curt

    Curt Member

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    That's as good a description as one could give. Thanks!
     
  8. scottosan

    scottosan Supporting Member

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    I have a circuit that I put in Marshalls in which I pull out the stock PCB and put in a turret board with own circuit. Most of the ones I have done were on JCM800;s or late 70's JMP's. Well, I finally did an early 70's JMP with a Dagnal C1998 transformer. "Organic" was the fist descriptive word that popped into my head. Although that was much more gain than stock, itt almost felt like there was nothing between the guitar and the sound I was hearing except gain. Meaning it sounded natural, and not forced and not held back. The owner of the amp emailed me and said, "The best way I can describe it is "organic" when compared to other high gain amps". I did not use that term infront of him, so he thought the same thing. The only thing different in this amp from the others I've done was the transformer.
     
  9. spikeRI

    spikeRI Supporting Member

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    amps that are orgasmic float some folks boat...........;)
     
  10. slider313

    slider313 Silver Supporting Member

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    When I think of organic in referance to an amp, I don't think of it sounding organic but rather feeling organic. Where the guitar and amp become one instrument and the notes which are played are felt as your fingers press the string as hard or soft as you wish,producing a sound from the speaker that can only be described as "felt" by the player.IMHO :AOK ​
     
  11. GAT

    GAT Gold Supporting Member

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    To me, and I've used the term, organic means that an amp has a very natural, warm, woody tone that responds to your input. An amp that has a cold, sterile, harsh, buzzy, or a phony type of distortion in not organic.

    Komet Connie, Jamison, Sex Amp= organic

    Roland JC120 with the "distortion" turned on = not organic

    My 2 cents...
     
  12. VintageJon

    VintageJon Member

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    "Organic" means it sounds like composte or excrement or somthing grown without chemicals...

    Well actually that's not true. I think it is someone's attempt to descibe an amp or other equipment that has great dynamics. This is to say that it responds to your pick hand. Most confusing description though.
    Just waiting for someone to post that an amp has great sexual innuendo.
    What would that mean???? Would have to consult mid to late 60's Playboy mags to even guess...

    -Jon
     
  13. thintele

    thintele Member

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    How would you describe the taste of a peach to someone to someone who has never tasted one?
    Organic is a adjective that gets thrown around alot when discussing amps ...but here goes...
    when you can hear every movement of your fingers, the metal of the strings , the resonsance of the wood...the tones seem to pop out before you've even played the note... notes sustain until the slightest release of pressure ... and every emotion, every idea emotes from the speaker as if you were speaking the words ...that's organic
    :jo
    yeah, I'm still looking from this amp too...
     
  14. Timbre Wolf

    Timbre Wolf GoldMember Supporter Gold Supporting Member

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    (mmmm fresh, ripe peaches!!)

    Here's a different take on organic: I use it to describe transitions that retain their characteristic detail as they change. This is a kind of continuity, as opposed to a an abrupt transition. Think of how moss or lichen grows on tree bark, compared to the painted surface of a human-manufactured object.
    Even the best realist painter's skill can never completely capture the rich detail of natural beauty that has been created organically. It relates to the dynamics of living, interactive systems.

    How does this relate to our guitars/amps as musical instruments? As others have said here, it is a kind of touch-responsiveness that allows you to continuously vary your expression by interacting with your instrument. A more "organic" setup enables you to have a lively give-and-take with the rig as an instrument, without harshly abrupt transitions. Our ears are incredibly sensitive to the subtle details in the transitions that make certain sounds more natural and appealing.

    Hey, I wonder if we dare delve into attempts to define the sonic term "warm?" That's a term I never use because of all the varied subjective assumptions about its meaning.

    - T
     
  15. leofenderbender

    leofenderbender Supporting Member

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    Hammonds have an organic sound. Gulbransens & Baldwins too.
     
  16. donnyjaguar

    donnyjaguar Member

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    The best amplifier I've played though is the one I have. It has lots of vibe and mojo. The bell-like tones have a nice glassy feel that is unveiled and it responds well to touch. Make no mistake, its ballsy and when you crank it up and it really sings. Rhythm playing is smooth and velvety with sustain that lasts all day. When driven hard with my effects it slays!

    Wait, I just said a full paragraph of text and really said nothing at all! :)

    DJ
     
  17. LPSlinger

    LPSlinger Member

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    Well, lets look at the root word. The root word of organic is obviously organ. So, if something is organic that means it sounds like an organ. Now, the real question is what kind of organ? Pipe organ? Hammond? Heart? Lungs? ;)
     
  18. Crunchyriff

    Crunchyriff Member

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    I would say that 'organic' as a sound=

    RAW, uncluttered or un-muted;
    tactile in response, warm, 3-D;
    NATURAL, unprocessed;
    pure.
     

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