need less damn shimmer, how and who

Discussion in 'Pickups' started by Mookakian, Oct 3, 2017.

  1. Mookakian

    Mookakian Senior Member

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    Im tired of the chase for this tone, everything ive tried bar an 81 prs i borrowed (old prs pups sell for 600 to 1000 bucks! And it may be totally different from the one i tried), everything else ive tried shimmers in the high end like a mofo, great for jazz and vintage rock blablabla, but who winds a pup with rounded highs and little shimmer... bold round highs and a clear sound without too much woof/output.

    Please help im loosing my freakin mind after a 5-10 year search and hundreds... thousands of $$$$$

    Singles, P90s, buckers, bucker p90... handwound and machine produced... always the same prob. Are there things to look for that can help narrow it down... brass plate, steel poles...? What has little articulation in the high end.

    I Got close with an acoustic into a Zoom multi fx into the amp... perhaps im looking at this all wrong, as tou can see ive done backflips chasing the sound i hear in my stupid skull :laugh2:
     
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2017
  2. Mookakian

    Mookakian Senior Member

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    Ok ok, keep trying till I find it. Sorry for the rant... tou know the feeling though
     
  3. DarrellV

    DarrellV Likes > Posts Silver Supporter Premium Member

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    OK, I'll play...
    You didn't say what type of music you play but an acoustic into an FX pedal sounds like you are looking for a clean tone that not glaringly bright.

    I take it the tone controls aren't cutting it for you either.

    The first thing that came to my mind, FWthat'sW is a SD Invader.

    Diffuse pole pieces for a bit less focus and over wound coils. Overwinding does boost output a bit but it does dampen highs as a trade off.

    OK, you've got the ball...:D
     
  4. Mookakian

    Mookakian Senior Member

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    Tried invaders, an Obucker too... way too much low mid push, and harsh highs, the low output buckers are much more pleasing but still a bit too much push

    As for tone... the tracks in writing require clean and a bit of crunch when things get tense, i ride the vol knob, constantly play with amp eq dials and with a low output set of buckers, the Area51 buffer on and always rolled back a touch... I can get a useable tone though its not inspiring me like that damn PRS was, so i thought, bucker p90... better output and low mid viocing but the shimmer was of course more dramatic.

    Amp is a mesa Stiletto, even tried an eq, in the loop and out front with the low mids pulled and 6k pylled down, helped out front but the eq adds something i dont like dynamically, cant use the touch to get heavy as easily as i can with no eq, tried a boss and a source audio, the boss worked better.
     
  5. Mookakian

    Mookakian Senior Member

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    A Buddy who winds told me early PRS guitars had really low wound asian pickups that were thin and weak sounding... that made a lot of sense, but i also tried another old PRS and the thing was totally opposite, one has snappy round highs, the other had high articulated shimmer... so not real keen on buying a $600 pickup set on hopes it not the shimmery type.

    I Could buy the PRS... it might actually be poss., maybe...
     
  6. Mookakian

    Mookakian Senior Member

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    Well i blew my coin on some WGS rwaper 50W speakers, perhaps the V30s are the drawback, here we go again LOL
     
  7. Mookakian

    Mookakian Senior Member

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    You will never believe, I organised with a bloke to play any of his "50 or so" guitars, through his... mesa stilleto

    Little bit scared, mostly excited! Im sure ill figure something out and get to play some incredible instruments.

    Its a bit hard for me right now, health left me unable to travel long distances and the nearest shop is a couple hours west. This truely is a miricle... so odd.

    Sorry for taking up your time, and be such a pesky bugger. Been lurking a while but 1st post in at least a year. And it kinda sucks lol sorry :)

    Ill get back with results and maybe a few nice pics :dude:
     
  8. rclausen

    rclausen Senior Member

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    Have you tried Burstbuckers or 57 classics? They're relatively flat with tamped down high-end. Perhaps a 2x12 setup with mismatched speakers will help, ie a v30 paired with a g12
     
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  9. Mookakian

    Mookakian Senior Member

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    No i havent tried thise pups rclausen, hopefully i get a go at em today.

    Heres a sample of what in after, Track Name: Infinate War...

    https://www.soundclick.com/mobile/default.cfm?bandid=1076259

    this is with a Ducan Jazz Neck and EQ and vol rolled back... kinda close but i want things to be less squishy and clunky, add any more output to loosen up the feel and we start getting wooly breakup thats not appealing.
     
    Last edited: Oct 4, 2017
  10. Mookakian

    Mookakian Senior Member

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    Slso notice im not getting much dynamic response when i dig in... thats the EQ but without it it sounds way too warm and bass riden.

    I Bet a strat neck or neck middle will be the ticket... thats one ive only dabbed on
     
  11. DarrellV

    DarrellV Likes > Posts Silver Supporter Premium Member

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    This right here makes me think that the reason you cannot loose the edge no matter what pickup you try is because it isn't the pickup.
    Makes me think your amp or more specifically your speaker, may be the culprit.

    I've done live sound for decades and I can tell you a rubbing voice coil or fractured cone can be real irritating to listen to.

    But even if its not damaged mechanically speakers do have 2 things going for them that you can change.

    Frequency response and resonant frequency.

    Sounds like you would like a speaker with less top end response and a higher resonant frequency, for example.

    Losing much of the top end response means the speaker will produce the highs much less on its own, even without the amp eq. smoothing the top end.

    A higher resonance frequency will move the area that the speaker tends to over emphasize on its own out of the mid bass mud area up to more of the mid bass midrange area.

    Last thing to have checked, and don't hate me for this because I just did it myself because I run a small studio as well as live sound, is get your hearing checked.

    On the off chance what you are experiencing is related to how your hearing is interpreting the highs and mids. There are parts in the ear and certain minor maladies that can cause an annoying and sometimes uncomfortable boost in our hearing of the mid to high range.
     
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  12. Mookakian

    Mookakian Senior Member

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    I Have a few speakers comming in and a spare open back slant cab here to work with, and dont feel bad for suggestions, thats exactly why im here.

    Did you check out the recording i posted above? Thats almost the sound only a bit too compressed as i have to run my channel vol and guitar volume sooo low, is actually super quiet in the room, i need to up the vol without breakup occuring. If i up the power section any more i get unwanted breakup from the power tubes

    My biggest fear is i need another head for this kinda stuff... poss even a solid state, could have prob nabbed one by now with all the guitar tinkering ive done trying to get that tone at a reasonable volume in the room.

    Speakers coming in are 12" WGS reapers 50W

    Would a series wired cab help keep highs snappy/crisp more so rhan parallel wired? If so... i think the 2x12 recto cab is parallel wired
     
    Last edited: Oct 5, 2017
  13. Mookakian

    Mookakian Senior Member

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    Scariest part is i have a half hour set in november where ill be showcasing my stuff at a festival so im freaking out about volume.. might have to go through a desk
     
  14. DarrellV

    DarrellV Likes > Posts Silver Supporter Premium Member

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    How old are your power tubes? Old worn out tubes will fizzle sooner as they age and the headroom they used to have will diminish over time.

    A closed back cab will also sweeten and deepen the sound from the speaker as well.

    It does that by trapping the bass waves coming off the back of the speaker so they can't cancel out the sound waves coming out the front.

    Instant rounding and mellowing. They also put a load on the speaker cone itself by creating a trapped air cushion inside the cab that it must push against in order to move. Also alters the speaker response.

    Open back cabs use this bass cancel feature to project more in the mid to upper frequencies so they can carry the sound further and 'cut through the mix' better when competing with drums and bass.
     
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  15. Mookakian

    Mookakian Senior Member

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    Replaced the power tubes a few months back, the recto 2x12 cab is closed, Just a bit worried ill void warranty if i swap the V30s out in that so want to make sure the WGS are in the right ballpark, if so i might make something up to close the slant cab, i assume thats an artform on its own but should give me some idea before i take it to someone to make a proper closed back for it, a removable bit of marine ply would be cool.
     
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  16. Mookakian

    Mookakian Senior Member

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    Thanks for all the input Darrell, the open vs closed was extremely interesting, i love to know why these tonal differences happen and you made it very clear to me, cheers mate, legend☆

    Had a chance to try a strat today, a guy bought an old Ibanez in for a set up so i jumped the opportunity... Neck pup was very nice, no EQ and just a little vol rolled off and bam! Alot less crunch and i can turn my channel master up to get alot more volume and the pre amp tubes could breathe.

    Im currently putting together a Tele body with a bridge bucker and was contemplating a tele neck but ill be going for a strat neck pup and modern bridge, i already have a tele, its a baritone but more than enough twang.

    The tunnel is growing shorter, and ill be taking all your suggestions on board for fine tuning the strat tone.
     
    Last edited: Oct 5, 2017
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  17. DarrellV

    DarrellV Likes > Posts Silver Supporter Premium Member

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    Okay, now you just made me think of something else you can try.
    If the Fender is pushing your amp just enough for you with single coils, but your humbucker guitars are too much, there is a small reversable amp mod you can try.

    I did this on my old Hotrod Deluxe to tame the squirrely overdrive sound that thing had and to give me more preamp volume range.

    All you have to do is swap the first preamp tube, which is usually a 12AX7
    with a 12AU7.

    The 12AU7 is electrically the same, but it is a lower gain tube. It will give less boost and more clean headroom to the front end of your amp.

    Keyboard and harmonica players do this mod to keep from overdriving the amp. The power section will still warm up the same.

    That might be just the thing you're looking for.
     
  18. zoork_1

    zoork_1 Senior Member

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    +1
     
  19. Mookakian

    Mookakian Senior Member

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    Interesting on the tube swap idea, cant wait to try a few things out, thanks man, guitars i know, amps... scare the pee outa me :laugh2: i dont think i can swap a 12au7 into the Stiletto, something about non biasing and needing Mesa Brand tubes... i need to read up on that.

    New amp would be ideal i know, but i wont be able to afford ine for some time and i love the mesa for blues/rock/heavy tones, its a weapon no doubt, and we will make do for now with a strat pup and diff. speaker for tamer tones... i hope :nervous:
     
  20. DarrellV

    DarrellV Likes > Posts Silver Supporter Premium Member

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    Just listened to it.... I like it a lot, BTW! I like tonal playing a lot myself!

    First thing I thought with hearing the boomy bass was you should try a compressor - limiter.

    Now, after reading this, I really think it would help you. It will tighten things up across the board sound wise and help contain those wooly bass notes.

    It will even out you playing volume automatically so you don't have to hold back for fear of booming on the strings.

    I use a Tube Pac pre amp / compressor across my my guitar signal before it hits my amp.
    [​IMG]
    I have it set so that it only compresses if I pick hard or hit big power chords.

    It is a 2 function unit and I use the tube pre amp to warm up my sound a bit.

    Otherwise it is out of the signal. This way I get a controlled dynamic range for expression.

    If I get over excited it kicks in to bring the levels down almost invisibly.
     

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