What does "dry" tone mean?

Discussion in 'Pickups' started by Mpcoluv, Sep 30, 2017.

  1. Mpcoluv

    Mpcoluv Senior Member

    Messages:
    215
    Likes Received:
    47
    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2010
    I see people here use the phrase dry when describing pickup tone. What does it mean? Less harmonics, more fundamental?
     
    brianbzed likes this.
  2. Matt_Krush

    Matt_Krush Senior Member

    Messages:
    933
    Likes Received:
    586
    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2014
    I reserve the adjectives 'dry or wet' for the amount of effects/processing added to the original guitar signal...not to the tonal qualities or lack thereof for pickups.

    Really haven't seen others use 'dry' for describing a pickup...I suppose you could.
    I'd infer that they are insinuating the pickup is flat and lifeless with little to no accentuation in the EQ spectrum.
     
    GBLEV, Rhust and Thumpalumpacus like this.
  3. JohnnyN

    JohnnyN Old school Premium Member

    Messages:
    4,187
    Likes Received:
    11,444
    Joined:
    May 15, 2010
    Could be uncompressed when used to describe the tone of a pickups. Never heard it though, except for what Matt said about the effects in the signal chain.
     
  4. Antigua

    Antigua Senior Member

    Messages:
    461
    Likes Received:
    111
    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2016
    In the signal chain sense, wet means the signal has been processed somehow, dry means it hasn't been.

    In the tonal sense, it's subjective, but if you cobble together the descriptions people use, dry just seems to mean more mids relative to treble. That description makes sense to me, because treble relates to clarity, and when you get a matte surface wet, it becomes clear and shiny until the water dries up, and it becomes matte again.
     
    Thumpalumpacus likes this.
  5. Dilver

    Dilver Senior Member

    Messages:
    726
    Likes Received:
    865
    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2011
    Hmmm... I've used the term "dry" to describe tone and I guess what I mean is that it's a searing treble pickup tone that is a little less "fat" for lack of a better term, not piercing, but crisp. Fast attack, articulate treble response. That's my take on it at least.
     
  6. scovell001

    scovell001 Senior Member

    Messages:
    193
    Likes Received:
    90
    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2015
    I would describe 'dry' as an A4 magnet tone. It has a very even, slaty 'dry' quality to it.
     
    bassmannlespaulman likes this.
  7. Mpcoluv

    Mpcoluv Senior Member

    Messages:
    215
    Likes Received:
    47
    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2010
    I have some A4 magnets...Maybe I'll give "Dry" a try...
     
  8. darthphineas

    darthphineas Senior Member

    Messages:
    536
    Likes Received:
    161
    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2014
    my idea of "dry": the Perpetual Burn bridge humbucker
     
  9. Mpcoluv

    Mpcoluv Senior Member

    Messages:
    215
    Likes Received:
    47
    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2010
    OK, I swapped an A2 magnet in a bridge bucker for an A4 and like it.
    It wasn't a night an day difference, just a like a little EQ change. Less spikey treble.
     
  10. bassmannlespaulman

    bassmannlespaulman Senior Member

    Messages:
    540
    Likes Received:
    294
    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2013
    Alnico 4 makes me think of dry tone.... just uncolored... extra even
     
  11. Classicplayer

    Classicplayer Senior Member

    Messages:
    2,163
    Likes Received:
    1,049
    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2007
    I always thought that the description "dry" meant an unprocessed signal. A Les Paul played through an old Fender Champ or Deluxe that has no reverb would be a dry tone IMHO. Once reverb or tremolo is added into the signal is now what I'd call "wet". The degree that each of those effects are applied determines just how wet or dry the signal becomes.


    Classicplayer
     
    GBLEV likes this.
  12. howlermonkey

    howlermonkey Senior Member

    Messages:
    195
    Likes Received:
    174
    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2013
    I think the maxxon pickups called "dry" referenced John Sykes extended highs he got from dirty fingers vs the more "rich" sound of a PAF.

    I think dry is the opposite of warm or rich according to greco guitars.
     
  13. Thumpalumpacus

    Thumpalumpacus Senior Member

    Messages:
    74,316
    Likes Received:
    179,284
    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2010
    "Wet" and "dry" are for FX discussion to me as well, andI agree with the thought that dry = middy.
     
  14. Zhangliqun

    Zhangliqun Senior Member

    Messages:
    1,596
    Likes Received:
    751
    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2007
    To me, dry means no bloom to the notes -- far from blooming or sustaining, the notes actually tend to fade very quickly after the attack* -- and a general lack of warmth (juice).

    *(Not to be confused with muting, which dampens the attack itself too.)
     
  15. howlermonkey

    howlermonkey Senior Member

    Messages:
    195
    Likes Received:
    174
    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2013


    I consider this "dry tone"....even though he has a super long delay effect, the tone is dry........maybe too dry but it sure does cut through the mix.
     
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2017
  16. Thumpalumpacus

    Thumpalumpacus Senior Member

    Messages:
    74,316
    Likes Received:
    179,284
    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2010
    Reminds you of the long shadow Zep cast ...
     
  17. Mouse

    Mouse Senior Member

    Messages:
    2,696
    Likes Received:
    3,896
    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2008
    That's dry tone




     
  18. brianbzed

    brianbzed Senior Member

    Messages:
    2,131
    Likes Received:
    912
    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2008
    To the best of my knowledge, a "dry" signal is unprocessed.....no reverb,delay,chorus, NOTHING. Obviously, "wet" is any effect added into the signal....my .02 cents!
     

Share This Page