Why Does My Amp Sound Different At High Volume?

Have you ever sat at home and basked in your “lion riding a motorcycle” guitar tone, only for it to end up sounding all “duck chewing on a balloon” at your next gig or band practice? I know I have. If you’re the kind of bats-for-breakfast, skulls-on-mic-stand, brutal guitar warlord sort for whom LOUD is life, then you’re probably cranked 24/7 and have no idea what I’m talking about. However, for those of us who cut our teeth on modelers with headphones or amps turned down to law-abiding levels, having to adjust to being audible over a drum kit can be a very frustrating experience.

Create a two stage potentiometer

Many guitars also come with a combination of single coil and humbucker pickups. Running a 500K potentiometer when using singles may make them too sharp and shrill. Sure you can have a couple of volume potentiometers, one for each sort of pickup. But what if you want to keep your control layout simple?

Effects Basics: The Volume Control

This article will explain exactly what these knobs do (duh!) and how you can use them to fool your audience into thinking that they are listening to a cello, steel guitar, or keyboard. Once you get to know these knobs well, it may even affect future guitar purchases!

What Are Potentiometers?

As guitar players we’re familiar with the volume and tone controls on our guitars. Potentiometers (pots) – or variable resistors – have been used for decades on guitars, effects and amplifiers. There are two distinct types of potentiometers that we typically use for these applications: linear (often abbreviated as “lin”) and logarithmic (log or audio). Each of these types of potentiometers are used for specific applications, but first let’s break down what a potentiometer is, and how it works.

The 1962 Fender Jazz Control

The Fender Jazz Bass is one of the three most iconic bass types known in the musical world (with the other two being the mighty Precision Bass, and the Music Man Stingray). With that, there are a number of truly excellent replacement pickups to install in order to get your desired sound (with many of…

Your Bass Tonal Palette I – Know your Volume

At some point, a working musician will walk into a gig, amp in hand, and be stopped. They’ll be handed a DI and a set of iffy headphones, and be told that “this is your rig.” No questions, or arguments. Please take your amp back to your car. And believe it or not, this is starting to become a regular occurrence, to the point where I bring my own headphones and preamp/DI of choice. But enough about that.

Conventional Wisdom and the 100-Watt Amplifier

Sometimes you feel like the whole world has gone crazy. At least, that’s how I feel whenever I come across a person on an internet forum repeating the increasingly-prevalent diatribe about the supposed impracticality of the 100-watt tube amp.

Choosing Pickups That Cut Through the Mix

For most of my career I’ve played in a band with another guitarist. I’ve even had the pleasure of sharing the stage with a second guitarist and a keyboardist. This always presents a bit of a problem though: how do I make my instrument stand out?

Making Your Solos Stand Out, part 1

The solo: for many of us, it’s one of the best things about playing guitar. For others, it’s a terrifying prospect. This article is for those of us brave enough to step up and take the lead for a while, and it deals with a problem as old as the guitar solo itself: how to stand out in the mix when it’s your turn for the spotlight.

So you want to experiment with pickups, but are afraid of soldering…

What if you could pay a tech a one-time fee to install a device that would mean you could swap out pickups to your heart’s content, at home without a soldering iron? Well, Seymour Duncan has you covered with the Liberator.

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