In search for the best les paul

Discussion in 'Historics & Reissues' started by Niilopi, Nov 21, 2017.

  1. freebyrd 69

    freebyrd 69 Silver Supporter Premium Member

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    I don't think so. All reissue's would not sound the same if acoustic sound makes no difference. According to this philosophy, your #1 L.P. would sound the same no matter what wiring harness or pickups are in it then, no? I'm sure I could find a set of sh!t pups that make that #1 sound not so desirable for you. I could also find amp settings that would do the same, though it will still sound the same acoustically, right? So if that's true, WTF difference does it's acoustic sound make? Zee Row.

    Again, I'll go back to the discernible differences. See above.

    Harness's? The difference isn't as big as pickups can make, but when it comes to clarity and the use of the tone pots, it's HUGE. I have had plenty of guitars......PLENTY, where the harness's sucked. No even volume sweep, sounding as if it has a wet blanket over it. When changed, with everything else remaining the same, TOTALLY different guitar. All the while, it's acoustic sound remains the same. Weird.
     
  2. LpCustom2007

    LpCustom2007 Senior Member

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    Now you’re just making yourself look stupid. Obviously Im talking about all other factors being equal. Pickups definitely affect the tone, alot, but the same set also sound different in different guitars. My Nr 1 has sounded KILLER with all different pickups I tried in it, but some of those pickups have sounded just decent or even shitty in other guitars.
    Acoustic tone matters, even though it might not be the only deciding factor in the end.
     
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  3. freebyrd 69

    freebyrd 69 Silver Supporter Premium Member

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    Wonder what this thing sounds like acoustically? LOL
     
  4. ARandall

    ARandall Senior Member

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    Probably as bad as it sounds plugged in........so much distortion on it you can't hear any good tone there. If thats the sort of example you have to resort to then its clear you know your point is invalid

    The acoustic tone, or 'guitar chassis' sets the starting point for whatever x set of pickups will sound like in a guitar. Well its not the strummed tone but the inherent character of the instrument.
    Nobody know what a set of pickups sounds like, because you have to mount it into a guitar in order to play them.......colouring them with the inherent nature of a (most likely) wooden instrument right from the start.

    So good, bad or indifferent pickups will all be slightly influenced by whatever the strings produce.....which is determined by the physical nature of the how the strings vibrate on a unique chassis.

    And for this reason there are combinations that cannot be compensated for......where you just cannot get them to sound equal with amp adjustments.
     
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  5. freebyrd 69

    freebyrd 69 Silver Supporter Premium Member

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    Not a fair comparison. You can't use different guitars. Kick, scream, name call, whatever, but explain yourself.....I have. It's not right to mislead anyone into thinking acoustic tone matters in an electric guitar. It doesn't.

    I've given you plenty of (agreeable) examples that can and will make a discernible difference in tone. So far, all I've heard is "it does so", when it comes to acoustic sound.

    I agree, the use of drastically different woods will make a difference in sound on an instrument, but an electric guitar unplugged will be zero indicator of what exactly that sound is when plugged in, and whether it's a good or bad guitar.
     
  6. LpCustom2007

    LpCustom2007 Senior Member

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    Exactly!!
     
  7. LpCustom2007

    LpCustom2007 Senior Member

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    Cant use different guitars?!? Isnt that what this thread is about? Finding THE one guitar, and how to find it. Arandall explained in better words my exact point.
     
  8. freebyrd 69

    freebyrd 69 Silver Supporter Premium Member

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    Agreed on the second and third paragraphs. The pickups/harness, WILL be influenced by the different wood/build on any given guitar. That cannot be argued. That being said, the acoustic sound of an electronic guitar still has zero to do with how it will sound amplified. ZEE ROW. Want a metal sound? Give me a set of EMG's and I'll make your electric guitar that has a less than desirable acoustic sound sound like Zakk Wylde. Give me a set of Tom Holmes and a Fender amp, and I'll make it sound like a clean jazz guitar with great tone. ZEE ROW.

    ARandall, you want to get all sciencey, but it's not. It's much simpler.
     
  9. Stuff

    Stuff Senior Member

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    I'd love for you to be right about this. I could flip my collection of Custom Shop instruments, and enjoy a serious pay day. Sadly we're on different continents, so I can't bring my USA LPs over and take you up on your offer.

    But there's another way. And I'm game if you are.

    I've got 3 USA LPs (2012 Classic Plus, 2013 Sig-T, 2013 Standard). They don't sound as good as my 3 Custom Shop LPs (all-stock 2015 R9, all-stock 2015 R0, 2015 Custom w/ upgraded pups, all stock otherwise).

    Here's what I've had done to my 3 USA LPs to try and bridge the gap:
    • All pickups have been upgraded to great pickups regularly recommended on here.
    • All wiring harnesses have been replaced with great after-market options recommended on here.
    • Tail piece and bridge have been upgraded - no more Nashville vileness.
    • Professional setups done to each guitar - same setups done to the RIs and Custom.
    • Everything else - wood, nut, tuners, finish - is still stock on the USA LPs.
    It's a genuine question. Let's prove you're right by transforming one of my LPs together. We both win if you are. What do you say?

    (Everyone else, let's leave it to him to help me, so that it's a fair comparison, and he gets a fair opportunity to prove his case).
     
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  10. LpCustom2007

    LpCustom2007 Senior Member

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    Freebird, I wont ever convince you so I’ll leave this conversation with three words. Ignorance is bliss.

    OP, try to find a luthier, or some other professional guitar related craftsman/tech whom you trust in, and ask for their opinion.
     
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  11. freebyrd 69

    freebyrd 69 Silver Supporter Premium Member

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    As stated earlier, what sounds "good" to you is subjective. Also, it has been brought up (and agreed upon) that different and better are two different things. You are talking about only the amplified sound, correct?

    Maybe you can prove MY point.....what do all of those guitars sound like acoustically? Do your USA's sound that incredibly different from your CS's when not plugged in? That's what we are really talking about here......acoustics.

    Another question.....and be honest. If I played all of those guitars acoustically, and you were in the same room, but had a blindfold on so you could not see, could you tell me, acoustically, which one's were which, or which one was better? It's not fair to ask if YOU played them, could you tell, because I'm sure you would know them by feel.

    I never said that I think I can make one guitar sound just like another. But here is a story to further back up the amplified thing. A friend of mine brought up his Bonamassa Epiphone to one of my gigs. He's not in a band, and he wanted to hear it cranked up and played in a live band setting, and asked if I would play it for a set.

    I obliged. I'll be honest, I promise you NOBODY in that club (there was a little over 100 that night) came up and asked me why my tone was sh!tty or even different. Nobody. Live, in a band setting, there certainly was not a $3000, $4000 or $5000 difference in my tone. Sad right. LOL. I'll admit it, there just wasn't. I could gig that guitar, or several other cheaper one's I have played with no issue and save myself a lot of money.

    I will say, I could notice a difference in tone, but, not huge. I also noticed a difference in feel and playability, but, I played his guitar the whole set.

    Bottom line, I don't think it's possible to make one guitar sound identical to another, as you are asking, but, that's not my point of contention either.
     
  12. freebyrd 69

    freebyrd 69 Silver Supporter Premium Member

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    Second time Lp. Usually, when the name calling starts, one is out of reasonable replies or explanations. I don't blame you. No worries.
     
  13. Crotch

    Crotch Delete My Account Entirely Double Platinum Supporter Premium Member

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    The only acoustics I care about are those from an acoustic guitar. By the way, the answer is NO, if anyone could tell the difference of a USA model or CS model unplugged. You can't. *Someone strumming them for you*

    I love custom shop guitars and I want to believe that they're soooo much better than other guitars but they're not, price wise, that much better. I'm guilty of the corksniffery myself. I have kept one USA guitar in my stable and the reason it has stayed is neck feel and pickups/sound while plugged in.

    As a Strat man myself I have seen basically the same argument put forth between Maple and Rosewood fretboards on many forums throughout time. Rosewood is "warm" sounding while Maple is "snappy" whatever the f*ck that is supposed to mean, lolololol. There's no difference to the human ear. We're not that sophisticated.

    Don't make something more difficult than it has to be is my motto.
     
    Last edited: Dec 4, 2017
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  14. mudface

    mudface Senior Member

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    Electric guitars are sooooooooo freak'n adjustable...........set ups,...pickups,....strings,.....switches & controls,....preamps,....effects,.....amplifiers,......and the materials they are made of. You can achieve any TONE or SOUND you can dream up. Why limit it to just the acoustic properties?
     
  15. rockinlespaul

    rockinlespaul Recovering Oxblood Addict V.I.P. Member

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    I'm not a Fender or strat guy but I definitely agree with the neck differences between maple and rosewood that your laughing at. Just goes to show ya...lol.
     
  16. freebyrd 69

    freebyrd 69 Silver Supporter Premium Member

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    Fred,
    I can see two guitars with sounding different, that’s obvious, but, what would make you attribute that difference to the fretboard and automatically dismiss other factors?
     
  17. BBD

    BBD Senior Member

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    Those who have followed the discussion this far will hopefully agree that:

    1/ The different vibrational characteristics of different timber (and mechanical construction) will conduct vibrational energy away from the strings more (less) efficiently at different frequencies. Think of the wood acting like band pass filters.

    2/ Because of its relatively low mass and physical shape, the neck will be more susceptible to forced vibration than the body, so the timber and construction of the neck will have a greater effect on acoustic and amplified tone than the body.

    3/ (1) and (2) will have some effect on both the acoustic and amplified sound of the guitar.

    4/ The effect of (1) and (2) on the tone of the amplified signal will be quite subtle.

    5/ The effect of (1) and (2) on the loudness and sustain of the amplified signal will be a little more obvious.

    6/ Different pickups have different characteristics, being more (less) efficient at reproducing different frequencies so the pickup will interact with the wood-modulated vibration of the strings in highly complex ways.

    So it is correct to argue that the acoustic sound of the guitar will *not* be a reliable guide to the amplified tone because the amplified tone is only created by the interaction of the pickup (and harness) with the vibrational system of strings/body.
     
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2017
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  18. BBD

    BBD Senior Member

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    Or perhaps we can subtly invert that to this:

    Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler.

    - Albert Einstein
     
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  19. thinkgreen

    thinkgreen Senior Member

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    It sure wasn' that complcated when I chose(or I was chosen) my r8. I just kept going through all the custom shop guitars the shop had untill I had the one that felt right in the hand and the sound I desired from it. So to sum up mine must of had all the characteristics of a good guitar that BBD summed up in his post. All I can say is trust your eyes, ears and hands. If you do that the guitar will talk to you and tell you it' the right one for you.

    Or I'm just mad
     
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  20. alnico59

    alnico59 Premium Member

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    I would say feel is the number one factor for me when choosing between different guitars. The mind plays tricks.

    For example, the other day I was driving my car and the tire maintenance alert came on. I swear you I could feel a problem. But when I pulled over to check - there was none. I had the car in for an oil change/tire rotation days before and the mechanic forgot to reset the computer.

    For me if the feel is off - everything else is too. I don't care how great the tone is. If I can not play it it's worthless to me.

    Also in my circle of friends/guitar players we refer to overdrive, distortion, crunch, etc.. as the "crutch". The more of it - the less you hear the true voice of the guitar and the easier it is to play. The notes fly off the fretboard and sustain for days. Guitar 101 I know. But it's often overlooked in these back and forth discussions on what's better. Too subjective and situational dependent IMO. It's like the jazzer, blues guy and metal head in the same room arguing over who can dial in the amp "better".
     

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