Nothing Really Ever Changes

rjwilson37

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I have been on My Les Paul now for quite a few years, and even though at first, I just wanted a real Gibson Les Paul to get that killer full tone. Little did I know that it was just the start of my tone/guitar/amp chasing for years. I never really new that nothing really ever changes for the most part. Sure there are new amps coming out and sometimes in a Blue Moon, there is something really spectacular and new and captures that killer tone. But... for the most part, and most of the time, they are just trying to re-create a lost tone that was there all along throwing it back in our face. Some people can re-create that tone just by playing any guitar on almost any amp, because it is really in there fingers and there style of play.

I keep coming back to the Squawk Box from time to time for the past couple years, wanting to see something new that is out and is miraculous... something I need to try. But, I just see the same old thing, everyone chasing tones and it's all the same thing over and over. I think I have come to realize that nothing really ever changes... it has been there all along and it is just getting thrown back in our face with a new shape or form.
 

Duane_the_tub

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The profiling thing is "new" in the grand scheme of things, and digital technology has also driven some popular amps in a similar vein like the Super Champ X2/XD, Boss Katana, Tonemaster and others. Unfortunately, so much of the guitar market is dominated by nostalgia and the idea that vintage designs and sound are the be-all, end-all. That is holding back "what's new" more than anything else.
 

northernguitarguy

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The profiling thing is "new" in the grand scheme of things, and digital technology has also driven some popular amps in a similar vein like the Super Champ X2/XD, Boss Katana, Tonemaster and others. Unfortunately, so much of the guitar market is dominated by nostalgia and the idea that vintage designs and sound are the be-all, end-all. That is holding back "what's new" more than anything else.
Some of that 'old' stuff is gold. I just picked up a Dallas Rangemaster clone, and it's made a profound impact on my tone. I can't believe it took so long to get one.
 

rjwilson37

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Most definitely for those who have not found there tone yet, keep searching, it is out there. Once you find it though, you really need to spend some time with it and really get with it. Take away all the effects, just play with your amp, and refine that tone and your playing, you will really fall in love with playing all over again.
 

MichaelAndrew3435

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The profiling thing is "new" in the grand scheme of things, and digital technology has also driven some popular amps in a similar vein like the Super Champ X2/XD, Boss Katana, Tonemaster and others. Unfortunately, so much of the guitar market is dominated by nostalgia and the idea that vintage designs and sound are the be-all, end-all. That is holding back "what's new" more than anything else.
+100000

One thing I've learned after years of buying, playing, and selling some expensive guitars and amps, I'm just not into "vintage" specs. I'm in my late 20's so I didn't grow up with old instruments or gear. If you spend a fair amount of time on here, you'll be convinced vintage stuff is the holy grail of the guitar/music making world. "You will be able to do everything and anything with a vintage guitar, cable, and vintage single channel tube amp!" people will tell you, while also throwing in the classic "They don't make them like they used to" proposition.

I mean no offense to those who are passionate about vintage gear, and understand a lot of stuff is subjective, but the truth is terms like "vintage specs" are mostly used for marketing hype and creating nostalgia. It often has little to do with quality, tone, or versatility. Why would I buy a single channel 20 watt boutique amp for $2k+, along with a relic'd CS vintage Fender Stratocaster for $5000 to have one sound with extra 60 Hz hum? That's $7k I could have used for a nice USA Les Paul, and a good, versatile multi-channel tube amp along with some pedals. This could be accomplished anywhere between $2k-$3k, and you'll have a lot more fun and money for other toys!

People don't realize it, but being a guitar player in 2020 is so much better than it was in 1960. You can't convince me otherwise. There's so much you can do with your rig, and so many places and resources to achieve what you want, it's often overwhelming. Sometimes I enjoy a simple setup and plug straight into a DRRI, but modern technology has made being a guitar player so much more interesting with multi-channel amps, pedals, modeling amps, etc.

And one last thing, Gibson and Fender still make awesome guitars. They didn't stop making good guitars in the 1960's, 1970's, or any other decade. Just because something is old, doesn't make it better.
 

rjwilson37

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+100000

One thing I've learned after years of buying, playing, and selling some expensive guitars and amps, I'm just not into "vintage" specs. I'm in my late 20's so I didn't grow up with old instruments or gear. If you spend a fair amount of time on here, you'll be convinced vintage stuff is the holy grail of the guitar/music making world. "You will be able to do everything and anything with a vintage guitar, cable, and vintage single channel tube amp!" people will tell you, while also throwing in the classic "They don't make them like they used to" proposition.

I mean no offense to those who are passionate about vintage gear, and understand a lot of stuff is subjective, but the truth is terms like "vintage specs" are mostly used for marketing hype and creating nostalgia. It often has little to do with quality, tone, or versatility. Why would I buy a single channel 20 watt boutique amp for $2k+, along with a relic'd CS vintage Fender Stratocaster for $5000 to have one sound with extra 60 Hz hum? That's $7k I could have used for a nice USA Les Paul, and a good, versatile multi-channel tube amp along with some pedals. This could be accomplished anywhere between $2k-$3k, and you'll have a lot more fun and money for other toys!

People don't realize it, but being a guitar player in 2020 is so much better than it was in 1960. You can't convince me otherwise. There's so much you can do with your rig, and so many places and resources to achieve what you want, it's often overwhelming. Sometimes I enjoy a simple setup and plug straight into a DRRI, but modern technology has made being a guitar player so much more interesting with multi-channel amps, pedals, modeling amps, etc.

And one last thing, Gibson and Fender still make awesome guitars. They didn't stop making good guitars in the 1960's, 1970's, or any other decade. Just because something is old, doesn't make it better.
I hear you, even though I am 56 and I do love the Brown Sound, Ozzy and GNR tones as well as that 80's tone in general from the past for sure. But... just trying to find your own tone that sounds right to yourself in your head can be anything past/future/present. Obviously present is best since the future is not here, but your tone may not exist yet or you have yet to find it and it is still in the future so to speak. Anyway, good luck all of you to find your tone since nothing really ever changes here on MLP Squawk Box trying to find that tone were all searching for.
Rock On! :dude:
 

MCT

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I think I have come to realize that nothing really ever changes... it has been there all along and it is just getting thrown back in our face with a new shape or form.
What's been more responsible for guitar innovation over the years- the gear or the player? The cop-out answer (while not necessarily wrong) is to say "both," but I'd venture to say it's more about the player than the gear. Take EVH (RIP), for example. Dimed Marshall, variac, short instrument cable, a modified Strat with a PAF pickup- not really anything new there. But introduce the guitarist and WHAM- suddenly it's something completely different.

All this to say- I'm not sure a solely external focus on gear to spur creative innovation will (or has ever) truly push(ed) the envelope for the guitarist. It's the synergism of the gear plus (more importantly) the guitarist.
 

MichaelAndrew3435

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I hear you, even though I am 56 and I do love the Brown Sound, Ozzy and GNR tones as well as that 80's tone in general from the past for sure. But... just trying to find your own tone that sounds right to yourself in your head can be anything past/future/present. Obviously present is best since the future is not here, but your tone may not exist yet or you have yet to find it and it is still in the future so to speak. Anyway, good luck all of you to find your tone since nothing really ever changes here on MLP Squawk Box trying to find that tone were all searching for.
Rock On! :dude:
Speaking of 80’s tone, I have a Bogner XTC 3534 that does high gain Marshall brilliantly. The clean channel is also stellar, and it comes with an effects loop. There’s also the newer Marshall JCM800’s. I’ve never played one, but I’ve heard plenty of positive feedback from many people. In fact, I can’t think of a person who bought one and didn’t like it.

These amps are currently produced and sound great for $2k or less. There is no need to look for vintage amps, spending money and time chasing mythical tones. Anyone who claims they can’t get good tone from modern gear isn’t doing it right lol.
 

el84ster

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Hanging out on a board like this will certainly make you think the whole guitar world is chasing its tail. This place is focused on on a pretty narrow area of music and guitar tone. And it’s fun sometimes
But outside of the les Paul bubble there’s all kinds of new sounds and inventions happening.
 

grumphh

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Forums like these are at best infomercials with a bit of entertainment value because you can actually participate in the carnage.

Gear is fun to discuss, no doubt about that.

But if you take the writings of the many, many shills (or perhaps bots are so advanced they can be mistaken for shills these days?) that reside on forums like these at face value, then yes, your view on instruments/amps/gear will be quite distorted.

Just play your instrument(s) and gear and enjoy it rather than jumping on a dumb "tone chasing" bandwagon where the tones sought after are from genres that have been on life support for more than half a century...
 

ehb

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Tone chasing is a rabbit hole than many of us will dive headfirst into...

Thankfully, I like the amps I have and each has its own personality..... That being said, I am not without guilt either from time to time...

It is funny to me (laughing at ME too) that I've heard a couple of the Fender Pawn Shop amps (red, shit green, brown) cranked up with a good guitar straight in and thought 'what the hell have we been doing all this eternal searching for...it's right there.'

I love tech. Love my RP500, Bass Fly Rig, a couple of individual stomps, and adore my new Spark amp for practicing and just plain fun........BUT.... I can plug into my Delta Blues 115, Bassman, Legend, Blackstar, etc etc etc., with no stomps anything, crank it a bit, and get the chill bumps all over again like when I bought em.....


It is indeed a circle.....



I'm an old fart pretty much and have been associated with the mus biz all my life off and on, retail, gigging for a living, soundco, service work, teaching music and later tech stuff and teaching it... I remember when everybody was going big iron, you could hardly give away a small jug combo...Champ, FP, FDR, Gib, Supro, etc. freaking etc.... Nobody wanted em... Then the SS phase cranked up....Peavey, Kustom, Earth, Ryder, etc... Some even jumped on that demon spawn from hell slab Sunn SS amp that should have never been... Back to big iron jugs.... Brit amps caught on like crazy.... Then came the boutiques that for eleventy-seven times the geeters of an original, you could have a PTP copy of an original cheap ass little jug amp....

Then low and behold, even those cheap ass Munky Ward oatmeal wood and cardboard cheap ass two jug electric chair amps were highly sought after.... Alamo, Sears, Champs, etc. etc. etc. became hot commodities....

Folks were even snapping up old tube Bogen PA heads to rig to play guitar through.... Bogen.... Good lawdy mercy.... Complete circle.....


Bass boat guitars with switches and knobs from hell, Kay, Kent, the nine-gillion Teisco variants, etc. were popular as hell and hits were recorded on em.... Couldn't GIVE a Lester away... Few could afford Skrats/Teles...... Then Skrats were in, Teles were in for country and studio where nobody actually saw em playing session on a Tele, and still couldn't even give a Lester away.... Yep the Oh My Homey Jeebus original Bursts and nobody wanted the damn things....

Clapton, Page, Allman, Betts, Green, etc. were seen playing Lesters and oh my gawd we gotta have a Lester to be cool...


Grunge hit and all of a damn sudden.....bass boat guitars and other weird shit was back in vogue.... Had to have weird for creds and shit.... Bang the skrangs, mang, now you're a guitar player......

Loop that keeps looping....

Funny.....
 

rjwilson37

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Sure I love the 80's tone, but I wanted an amp that could do more than that. I did purchase the 20w JCM 800 and after a week with it, I sent it back. It really had just that one gain sound to it and I got tired of it trying to do some nice 90's Hard Rock/Metal. I still had my Dark Terror at the time, and just love that killer gain, but the amp is a little bit to dark for other stuff I liked, like Billy Squire Lonely is the Night. Anyway... I wanted a two channel amp that had that nice Dark Full Gain and a Clean Channel with some headroom, so I purchased the Orange TH30. I use my Line 6 HX Effects to brighten up the Dark Gain and I can get anything I want now with my setup. I have a great amp which is where you want to start and all the effects you could want to throw at it, gives you pretty much anything. Even that Van Hagar For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge and Balance tone from songs like Humans Being, Top of the World.
 
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CoolRene

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Tone chasing is a never ending story. Best LP tone I ever got was through the input on an old Uher tape recorder, while diming the output through a speker. It had it all: harmonics, sustain, overtones. Alternatively, a Fender Deluxe reverb+TS9 did the trick... ;-)
 

Lemonburst R8

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Just saw a great interview with the late( makes me feel sick to say that) Eddie Van Halen he said he developed his sound by fiquring out all these little tricks tto make sounds with his guitar because he didn’t have all the pedals that everybody else had Thats how you develop your own tone In the 70’s I think we we’re trying to find our own sound with the tools we had. Nowadays everybody is trying to sound like somebody else theyre always trying to put somebody in a box with catchfrases like Sounds like this amp or you’ll get that whoever sound we didnt have all the technology back than so we played alot of crappy equipment trying to find our own sound now you can just dial in any sound you want without really getting to know your equipment Because of the Interweb everybody’s an inexperienced expert Food for thought
 

acidreign1026

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+100000

One thing I've learned after years of buying, playing, and selling some expensive guitars and amps, I'm just not into "vintage" specs. I'm in my late 20's so I didn't grow up with old instruments or gear. If you spend a fair amount of time on here, you'll be convinced vintage stuff is the holy grail of the guitar/music making world. "You will be able to do everything and anything with a vintage guitar, cable, and vintage single channel tube amp!" people will tell you, while also throwing in the classic "They don't make them like they used to" proposition.

I mean no offense to those who are passionate about vintage gear, and understand a lot of stuff is subjective, but the truth is terms like "vintage specs" are mostly used for marketing hype and creating nostalgia. It often has little to do with quality, tone, or versatility. Why would I buy a single channel 20 watt boutique amp for $2k+, along with a relic'd CS vintage Fender Stratocaster for $5000 to have one sound with extra 60 Hz hum? That's $7k I could have used for a nice USA Les Paul, and a good, versatile multi-channel tube amp along with some pedals. This could be accomplished anywhere between $2k-$3k, and you'll have a lot more fun and money for other toys!

People don't realize it, but being a guitar player in 2020 is so much better than it was in 1960. You can't convince me otherwise. There's so much you can do with your rig, and so many places and resources to achieve what you want, it's often overwhelming. Sometimes I enjoy a simple setup and plug straight into a DRRI, but modern technology has made being a guitar player so much more interesting with multi-channel amps, pedals, modeling amps, etc.

And one last thing, Gibson and Fender still make awesome guitars. They didn't stop making good guitars in the 1960's, 1970's, or any other decade. Just because something is old, doesn't make it better.
I totally agree with this. Lately I’ve been building amps ( Ceriatone kits), and of course I went right for the Dunmble circuits and built a OTS and an SSS. Well, they’re great amps, but I don’t need everything boosted all the time....I ended up building a clone of a Friedman BE-100 deluxe(Ceriatone AH deluxe). It does everything, tone shaping, clipping switches, voicing, texture, it has an internal buffered loop and a line out. I run that to an OX box, connected to an Apollo Twin quad. I love tech mixed with analog. I can do anything I need to with that rig. Oh, and a Les Paul through a Friedman BE channel is one of the best tones I’ve experienced.
 

MichaelAndrew3435

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I totally agree with this. Lately I’ve been building amps ( Ceriatone kits), and of course I went right for the Dunmble circuits and built a OTS and an SSS. Well, they’re great amps, but I don’t need everything boosted all the time....I ended up building a clone of a Friedman BE-100 deluxe(Ceriatone AH deluxe). It does everything, tone shaping, clipping switches, voicing, texture, it has an internal buffered loop and a line out. I run that to an OX box, connected to an Apollo Twin quad. I love tech mixed with analog. I can do anything I need to with that rig. Oh, and a Les Paul through a Friedman BE channel is one of the best tones I’ve experienced.
I have 3 main amps right now. A Bogner XTC 3534, Fender DRRI, and a Mesa TC-50. I think I’m done buying amps to be honest, at least higher end stuff. It’s unlikely I’m going to find anything I like more than what I have, and selling stuff on Reverb isn’t as easy as it used to be (at least for me). I can’t sell stuff I don’t like as easily.
 

needlespauls

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From a gear standpoint, tonal varieties and brand and circuit types...yeah things haven’t changed much. BUT!!! It is always fun and interesting to see how amp makers will present a product. Place of manufacture vs price, appearance, and most importantly....sound. There are so many options out there now...but if you know what you want to a “T”....there’s often not a substitute. If you want the JCM 800 sound exactly...only a real 800 will do. And you will pay!!! Ugh. But if you’re looking for ballpark similarities with more versatility, there’s tons of options. For me? I would just love to find a tube amp where I LOVE the clean and gain channels hahaha. I’m thinking the Redplate Magica will do it...but damn they’re up there $. I’m first and foremost a Marshall guy, so maybe a JVM. But then the USA Players Bad Cat stuff is incredible, played a Cub 40R a little ago and absolutely loved it. We’ll see. Gotta wait til spring before I do anything really.
 


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