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Old 07-30-2008, 01:22 PM
Posts: n/a
Default Re: Starting Guitar......

Originally Posted by TheGroceryman View Post
Wait, am i missing something, or is it just because of my total ignorance for the guitar and me not knowing anything about them. Cause i dont see how 2 electric guitars can sound different. Isnt the amp that makes the sound?

I probably sound like an idiot.
Let's go through the list.

Pickup selection (humbuckers and single coils are radically different - I have one of each and they really are different). Higher-output pickups (eg. EMG's or anything active) tend to drive amps into overdrive and distortion more easily. Humbuckers (due to the phase cancellation that is built in to prevent mains hum) have a slightly darker sound than single coils, which are brighter. P-90's, which are large single-coils, lie somewhere between.

Scale length. Guitars with a longer scale length sound 'snappier' and a little brighter, this is another reason (other than the pickups) why Fenders tend to be a little brighter than Gibsons. (who run a shorter scale length).

Wood type/fingerboard type. Different woods impart slightly different qualities onto the sound.

Construction techiques. This is slightly dubious, but some neck setting methods are said to improve sustain compared to others, eg. through necks are supposedly better for sustain than bolt-on necks.

Hardware choices. Much like the construction techniques, some of the hardware can make a difference - 'Tune-o-matic' style bridges are said to improve sustain over other variants.

String selection. Lighter strings have a bit less depth than heavier strings. There's a big difference between a set of 9's and a set of 12's, I've played with both and it's very noticeable.

And yes, the amp does make a big difference, as does everything else. Effects pedals do as well, but most effects pedals whilst altering some of the characteristics will still keep your core tone from your guitar. Overdrive sounds radically different between my PRS Satana SE and my Lite Ash Strat - as do my other effects, like Wah and Tremolo. If the core tone isn't happening, it's going to sound awful regardless of what you put it through.
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