Your next guitar revisited

August 2019 is the first KVR Guitar Month so here's a new forum for discussion of all things guitar!
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vurt
addled muppet weed
51538 posts since 26 Jan, 2003 from through the looking glass

Post Tue Oct 08, 2019 8:51 am

you'll have to send me one of your beautiful jazzcasters for free as even the import cost will now be far too expensive :cry:

worth a try :hihi:

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vurt
addled muppet weed
51538 posts since 26 Jan, 2003 from through the looking glass

Re: Your next guitar revisited

Post Tue Oct 08, 2019 8:52 am

cptgone wrote: ↑
Tue Oct 08, 2019 8:49 am
vurt wrote: ↑
Tue Oct 08, 2019 8:41 am
at least the weed is grown here, so no import tax there.
Say cheese ;)
im on star dog at the min :P
was blue cheese last week :hihi:

tapper mike
KVRAF
5099 posts since 20 Jan, 2008

Re: Your next guitar revisited

Post Tue Oct 08, 2019 6:09 pm

It's here...

Image

I've been playing it off and on for the last six hours.
Lots of fun. Still I'm going to make upgrades come January.

It's slightly thinner than my previous 16 Box but also considerably heavier.
Considering the both are maple,maple,maple the light last one was more maple (top) the new one... heavier is select spruce.

They claim it's a thin 60's LP neck. Well it's a rounded not as thin as a 60's thin neck but it's not too overtly thick either. It's at about my limit on Thick necks.

The picture (I have more but I'm too lazy to transfer then upload) doesn't do the grain of trans justice. It's stunning and reminds me of my 78 les paul custom in red wine and cream binding.

The pau ferro fretboard is porous (grippy) It's a transition for me as I prefer ebony which is slick. However, the frets are wide and tall enough that I can pretty much use a lighter touch and glide my way past.

It has changed my mind about many things I wanted to do. I'll never get the action low enough nor the tension light enough to put 13's on it and expect to tap the way I currently do. The tailpiece extends further than my previous boxes did. This puts more tension on the strings. I haven't broken out my tools to compare fret height but I don't think pleking would make that much difference because they feel pretty level right now.

I think it has 12's on it now. The strings are new and squeaky. I might go with a lighter gauge of Chromes.

I'm unimpressed with the probucker alnico 2's installed. I like a bit more meat on my tone while soloing. While the tech at the guitar shop suggested I try first... lowering the pups and raising the polepieces and if that didn't work raise the action... I'm thinking of installing an SD Bennedetto PAF or a P-Rail into the neck.

While before I was dead set on getting a fingered tailpiece to replace the current one ...now moreso. The tension on the strings is really tight already with no floppy low strings. I'm actually thinking of going in the opposite direction and getting some relief on the strings.

I've had maple tops with mahogany bodies. Spruee tops with mahogany bodies and maple tops with maple bodies. This is the first time I've had maple body and spruce top on an archtop. Even though it's laminated it projects more and brighter than any other boxes I've had acoustically.

I really haven't gone through it's paces with my amp. That will come tomorrow. I want to wait a week before changing strings to flatwounds but I may not last.

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Uncle E
KVRAF
11082 posts since 22 Nov, 2000 from Southern California

Re: Your next guitar revisited

Post Tue Oct 08, 2019 9:42 pm

tapper mike wrote: ↑
Tue Oct 08, 2019 6:09 pm
I'm unimpressed with the probucker alnico 2's installed. I like a bit more meat on my tone while soloing. While the tech at the guitar shop suggested I try first... lowering the pups and raising the polepieces and if that didn't work raise the action... I'm thinking of installing an SD Bennedetto PAF or a P-Rail into the neck.
Wouldn't lowering the pickup and raising the polepieces thin out the sound? My Ibanez with a PAF Pro in the neck has the polepieces up and it made the pickup much more clear and open sounding, which seems to be the opposite of what you're going for.

Dimarzio recommends using the Air Zone for a thicker, meatier jazz box tone. I've always thought about putting one in my Epiphone Emperor Regent, which sounds more like an acoustic guitar than an L5.

tapper mike
KVRAF
5099 posts since 20 Jan, 2008

Re: Your next guitar revisited

Post Wed Oct 09, 2019 3:41 pm

Uncle E wrote: ↑
Tue Oct 08, 2019 9:42 pm


Wouldn't lowering the pickup and raising the polepieces thin out the sound? My Ibanez with a PAF Pro in the neck has the polepieces up and it made the pickup much more clear and open sounding, which seems to be the opposite of what you're going for.
That's what the tech at the store advised.

Here's the thing. This is going to be my one and only jazz box for a long time to come. I'd like to mix up the tone a bit with P-rails.

The SD rails sound more like Charlie Christian pups minus the overt microphonics.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YbO7dtkTWdk

The P90 in it will sound more like ...
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6sckM5YCyI0

The full humbujer tone will sound like a slightly beefed up 59
Like a SD Bennedetto PAF
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=79KgySFNQ-8&t=30s

codec_spurt
KVRAF
3736 posts since 21 Sep, 2005

Re: Your next guitar revisited

Post Wed Oct 09, 2019 5:42 pm

tapper mike wrote: ↑
Sun Oct 06, 2019 8:00 pm

No we're all good. obviously not all P90's are magnetic. Though in general P90's have a beefier tone than standard single coils.

I made too separate points that weren't really connected so it could be my bad. I just noticed that when something related to a P90 comes up everyone clammers in mostly in praise of the growl they provide.
I'm certainly not an authority on this. I only got my first P-90 guitar a couple of years back.

As for the 'growl', it's true, they can bite quite a bit when on full tilt, but when dialed back they provide a very clean sound, almost bell-like. And this for me is the quintessence of all the P-90's I've tried (only a few). By 'dialed back' I mean, play your guitar with pups on '7' for a very chimey clean tone, then if you want to go a bit louder and a bit more in your face, crank it up to '9' or '10'.

Most the time this trick doesn't work on most guitars. Well, the strats and teles I have of course. Dialing down to '7' just makes the tone dull (comparatively). But with the P-90's it makes them clearer. Dial up to '9' and you have them louder with greater presence. Dial up to '10' and you have the grunt and saturation. Maybe this is what people mean by 'growl'. It's not a bad adjective to describe it.

But yeah, P-90's are beefier and a bit more dirty than standard single coils, but not so harmonically rich and 'full' as a proper humbucker. That's my limited understanding anyway.

I'd be happy to start a gig with P-90's on '7' for all the clean rhythm stuff, then just notch all the way up to '10' for full on crunch. Then again, not sure about the feedback!



I checked the P-90's on my Gibson LP and they are indeed quite noisy and full of hum (when not grounded by your hand on the strings), but the variations on the Revelation Jazzmaster (by Entwistle), they were much more well behaved and pretty quiet.

I would never say that any pup sounds better than the other. I think some sound better in certain guitars, depending.

I'm happy to try out the variations I have and enjoy them where I can. I'm just about to buy a new amp as well, so I'm curious what that brings to the table also.
"you're all GUI whores." - banned KVR member 'snooky'.

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The Noodlist
KVRian
1139 posts since 16 Aug, 2017 from UK

Re: Your next guitar revisited

Post Wed Oct 09, 2019 5:58 pm

codec_spurt wrote: ↑
Wed Oct 09, 2019 5:42 pm
As for the 'growl', it's true, they can bite quite a bit when on full tilt, but when dialed back they provide a very clean sound, almost bell-like. And this for me is the quintessence of all the P-90's I've tried (only a few). By 'dialed back' I mean, play your guitar with pups on '7' for a very chimey clean tone, then if you want to go a bit louder and a bit more in your face, crank it up to '9' or '10'.

Most the time this trick doesn't work on most guitars. Well, the strats and teles I have of course. Dialing down to '7' just makes the tone dull (comparatively). But with the P-90's it makes them clearer. Dial up to '9' and you have them louder with greater presence. Dial up to '10' and you have the grunt and saturation. Maybe this is what people mean by 'growl'. It's not a bad adjective to describe it.
A treble bleed might help in some cases when rolling off the volume.
codec_spurt wrote: ↑
Wed Oct 09, 2019 5:42 pm
I checked the P-90's on my Gibson LP and they are indeed quite noisy and full of hum (when not grounded by your hand on the strings), but the variations on the Revelation Jazzmaster (by Entwistle), they were much more well behaved and pretty quiet.
Might be worth checking the grounds with a multimeter. Strings and tailpiece should be grounded.
Currently trying to turn noise into music. :neutral:

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Forgotten
KVRAF
4167 posts since 15 Apr, 2019 from Nowhere

Re: Your next guitar revisited

Post Wed Oct 09, 2019 6:04 pm

The Noodlist wrote: ↑
Wed Oct 09, 2019 5:58 pm
A treble bleed might help in some cases when rolling off the volume.
I was just going to say the same thing. It also makes your tone pot much more useful as you have the ability to alter tone at any volume rather than just use it at higher volumes.

codec_spurt
KVRAF
3736 posts since 21 Sep, 2005

Re: Your next guitar revisited

Post Wed Oct 09, 2019 6:28 pm

Uncle E wrote: ↑
Tue Oct 08, 2019 9:42 pm

Wouldn't lowering the pickup and raising the polepieces thin out the sound?

You might think that. But the advice on this varies depending according to certain factors. Sure, it's basic physics and electronics and 'whatnot', but I've see major guitar manufacturers (small time) argue over this.

Might have something to do with magnet type, windings (overwound, underwound), that kind of thing. IIRC.

I did get very lost in this world for a while. And I'll admit I don't remember all I learned, or if I even learned anything at all.

I'll give another example:

There is a very long thread on the main Telecaster forum on the net where the toss is argued over the angling of the bridge pup with regard to the lower and higher strings. One would think that because the tone gets higher and more harsh the further down the neck (and closer to the bridge) the pup is situated that the Telecaster would have it angled with the bottom (thick) strings, closer to the bridge (making the bass not so boomy), and the higher (thin) strings further away from the bridge (making the high not so harsh). But this is not the case. Quite the opposite. Look at any Telecaster and the bridge pup is angled so the bass strings are more boomy and the highs are more harsh.

It goes against all known wisdom with regard to physics. This is science and can't be argued, yet... The Telecaster, designed in the 50's and the first ever Electric guitar (iirc) has it the other way about! The Telecaster is already known for having an 'ice-pick' treble position, and this doesn't help.

However, experts claim this is not the case. And even if it were it does not matter because the guitar was made at a time where extra treble was needed to cut through the dense mixes that it would have been competing with in the 50's (straw man argument).

I'm obviously from the camp that says the design is wrong here. The only thing they got wrong. Quite a few custom builders reverse the angle to mitigate this, so I'm not alone in thinking this.

Boutique makers of very expensive Telecasters put the bridge pup around the 'right' way. It's not a difficult mod to make and I'm going to do it myself in fact. Then again, I doubt it will really make that much difference in 'reality'. That bridge pup will still cut like an ice-pick. We're only talking half an inch tolerance or so, and the windings and magnets used will probably contribute more to the overall 'sound'.

But the argument rages on.

Other boutique makers chime in and say 'no, no, no' you just don't get it do you? And they will argue about it like it matters. It does, but not to that extent.

:party:

There is no consensus. Not even with regard to the provable and demonstrable laws of physics.

So, suffice it to say, if people who make these things for a living can't agree on a common base for such a basic thing (backed up by the irrefutable laws of physics), then it's not too much of a stretch they would muddy the waters when it comes to pole heights on the pups or the relief of the pups themselves.

I just scratch my chin and say 'interesting'...


I'm not saying your proposition is incorrect Uncle E, just that someone, somewhere will argue against it, even if it's proved to be right. They will use a strawman, and they will use the very laws of physics itself to refute you!

Me? I just get me screwdriver out and see what sounds good.

But it's true, some pups do get brighter the higher up they go, others get duller if you take them down, depending. Mix that in with them getting louder and quieter as well as you tamper...

I have some lousy guitars with some lousy pups, but still, the results can be 'interesting'.

What you can gain in tone you lose in volume. Define 'tone'. Define 'bright'.

So you made it 'brighter', yet you reduced the volume. Mmm...

Does it still sound 'brighter' now?


...

I'll just stop there. These aren't necessarily my arguments, and they aren't even the craziest of the arguments I've heard from reputed guitar builders.

You can look this stuff up on the net. But good luck with that. A simple proposition sometimes leads down the path to madness...
"you're all GUI whores." - banned KVR member 'snooky'.

codec_spurt
KVRAF
3736 posts since 21 Sep, 2005

Re: Your next guitar revisited

Post Wed Oct 09, 2019 6:31 pm

The Noodlist wrote: ↑
Wed Oct 09, 2019 5:58 pm

Might be worth checking the grounds with a multimeter. Strings and tailpiece should be grounded.
Nah, it's just a typical P-90. There are methods around it. But this is pretty standard behaviour out of the box.

If I was playing live or doing serious studio work (then again I know how to rock a noise gate) then I'd work it out. For now, it's just part of the charm...
"you're all GUI whores." - banned KVR member 'snooky'.

codec_spurt
KVRAF
3736 posts since 21 Sep, 2005

Re: Your next guitar revisited

Post Wed Oct 09, 2019 6:44 pm

Jafo wrote: ↑
Sat Oct 05, 2019 11:53 am
My $20 (2Β’ adjusted for inflation). Ceramic can be great; I tried various Alnico mags in a Super Distortion, and decided I liked the overpowered ceramic best -- in that pup, it was more organic and chewy. I usually choose unoriented A5 or even A3, though; they tend to feel more complex to me, compared to ceramic, maybe even raw. Pleasingly irregular? Ceramic just tends to feel too... polished? precise? neutral? Still, you never know what a given pup or mag will sound like in a given guitar.

Except that P90s are simply awesome -- raunchy, raw, elegant, refined, they can do it all -- and sound good everywhere. :hihi:
I've got Alnicos that sound super sharp and bright almost harsh. And I've got Ceramics that sound rich and full and rounded.

I've been in talks with someone who makes the best sounding pups on the planet (American guy). He's endorsed by one of my top 5 ever best guitar players in history. He says you can't always tell. I'm going to get some pups off him later in the year (he has a waiting list and they are made to order). They are pretty well priced (but the shipping kills it).

Also magnets can lose their harshness with age. They can get messed with if put by strong magnetic fields. Sounds plausible. So maybe my main guitar sounds better now than it did 30 years ago when it was first 'charged up'.

My no.1 guitar has ceramics. Can sound like a strat with a twang and honk out of phase, or can sound like a creamy humbucker. Just about. Good enough for me.

Those ceramic P-90's in my Revelation Jazzmaster are just out of this world good.Then again, I do love the bright warm tone from the Alnicos in my Strat (chinese squier). It's bordering on too bright, but I think a string change and maybe a pot change will sort it out.

I really don't know. I'm sure others do. Like I said, it's fun to talk about it and compare notes. Too many experts on the internet. Thankfully I'm not one. I'm happy with what I have. I'm at the stage where I'd rather tinker with what I have and try and find some kind of 'perfection' rather than buying new again and having to go through it all, yet again.

Pick ups are kind of important!
"you're all GUI whores." - banned KVR member 'snooky'.

codec_spurt
KVRAF
3736 posts since 21 Sep, 2005

Re: Your next guitar revisited

Post Wed Oct 09, 2019 7:20 pm

Uncle E wrote: ↑
Tue Oct 08, 2019 8:42 am
How does it work with the biggest British amp companies, Marshall and Vox, making most of their products in China and Vietnam?
I can't speak about amp companies. But I know that Revelation guitars who have a long British pedigree make their guitars in China. Though they are 'kind of' designed and quality controlled and set up in Britain. In Wales, in fact.

Entwistle who is the main guy at Revelation and is a contemporary of Trevor Wilkinson (Harley Benton et al) has a very long pedigree going back to German company Hohner and their iconic 'Jack' guitars/basses (Steinberger rip-offs and very very good they were too - I owned both the Jack guitar and Bass.).

http://www.entwistlepickups.com/about.php?fllstry=y

Apparently, Entwistle lives in China and personally oversees the manufacturing output doing executive quality control. Makes sense.

The guitars get shipped back to the UK for finishing touches and for retail and distribution. I've bought a few guitars of his (Revelation) all from one ma and pa music shop here in the UK. Perfect set ups. Competing with Epiphone for quality and mojo. Better even, that's why I chose them.

I'm sure companies like Vox et al have a different set up. Entwistle and Revelation are boutique, but boutique on a larger scale. His contemporary Trevor Wilkinson (a massive name in guitar building/parts) has a slightly different but none the less efficient and successful business model. See Harley Benton.

https://www.jhs.co.uk/brands/wilkinson

I'm not sure if Wilkinson is associated with HB anymore so don't quote me on any of this. I'm going off memory here with the odd google search to back stuff up.

Anyway...

They are both laughing all the way to the bank by leveraging a lifetime of expertise, coupled with business nouse, coupled with ever-changing dynamic conditions in the market place when it comes to 'emerging economies' and being able to 'play the field' themselves, in a more agile manner than even Fender or Gibson are doing, to keep themselves afloat, make profit, and provide the best quality guitars on the planet at the very cheapest prices, while still doing so in an ethical manner.

One time Japan was the big outsourcing nation. Quality went up. Prices went up. Switched to Korea. Quality went up. Prices went up. Switched to Indonesia. Quality went up. Prices went up. Switched to China. Quality went up...

And so now we have all these countries able to make quite decent guitars for decent prices. It's all in haggling for the specific batches by this point. It's not like Uzbekistan is going to get tooled up now and start exploiting slave labour to undercut the industry to start making cheap guitars for ******.

It's a merry go round.

Do you really know where your Fender guitar is made? Are the workers there paid a good wage? Do they have health and safety taken care of so they are not dying of inhaled paint fumes in 20 years time?

Entwistle and Wilkinson (Revelation and Harley Benton respectively) claim to take care over this. I guess someone could call them out on it. I haven't. But I've talked to the boys and girls in Wales stocking and distributing the instruments before they go out to the ma and pa stores. They seem happy.

Entwistle claims to take ethics seriously and pays above average wage for his Chinese employees. I don't know how true this is. I've never checked.

But one thing is for sure, these guitars were made by happy people who take pride in their work. Either that or they were made by some very hard-worked slaves.

You pay a bit more for a Revelation guitar. It's not boutique in the sense it's over-priced. But you get what you pay for. So the jack socket didn't work on my Jazzmaster, but the finish and everything else was superb.

I paid just under 300 quid for my 335. An absolute black beauty in every regard. With pups almost worth the price of admission alone.

For me, Revelation and Harley Benton both have a very interesting and sustainable business model. Of course things will change. Tariffs and taxes will come in. New rigs will have to be set up. New slave labour will have to be found to make it all profitable again. But for now. This is a sweet spot in guitar manufacturing. Maybe not such an anomaly as when Fender outsourced their first Fenders to Japan in the early 80's, but never a better time for those wanting a low cost high quality instrument.

IMHO.

I'm about to buy a Vox amp. But I need to find it second hand. They don't make it anymore. I don't trust any of these companies. Not saying they are bad. But until I know different I will assume they are exploiting third-worlders as much as the next corporation and burning us punters in the West just for fun.

What we need is a whistle blower to let us know how things are really run in today's market and whatnot. But alas, everyone has tight lips, lest they sink those loose ships...
"you're all GUI whores." - banned KVR member 'snooky'.

codec_spurt
KVRAF
3736 posts since 21 Sep, 2005

Re: Your next guitar revisited

Post Wed Oct 09, 2019 7:40 pm

cptgone wrote: ↑
Tue Oct 08, 2019 8:17 am
My next guitar was gonna be a Revelation RJT-60.
I've been waiting 6 months now, and I'm worried.
Don't be worried. You will get it. If you are lucky, in the next six months again. If it still doesn't materialise, just get your money back.

These guitars are always sold out. Almost impossible to get. You just need to get lucky and walk in to your ma and pa store and pluck it off the shelf, or scour and search online for the last ever copy in the country coz they've all sold out.

I picked my vibrant Jazzmaster off the shelf for 199 quid. They were going for 230 on line - if you could find one!

I paid less than 300 for my 335 which was still a fiver cheaper than the otherwise very good Epiphone 335 at the time.

I went through the catalogue with the guy from the shop and he said he would phone me when my new models came in (wanted the short scale Tele iirc), anyway, whatevs, the phone call did not come. Nada.

You will get your guitar. Or you will get your money back.

Owning a Revelation is a revelation. You can really feel the love gone in to it. These guitars aren't made by slave labour. They are made with great love and attention to detail. There is too much that is just right about them to say otherwise.

Also, you could kick up, phone their head office in Wales. You actually get to speak to someone. Tell them you are pissed, about to cancel your order, now f**king find me the last copy of this guitar you got in the country, or else!

Might work. Might not. Might have to phone around yourself. There is a list of stockists - there aren't that many in the UK - phone each and everyone and ask if they have 'your' guitar. When you find it, tell them to hold on to it. Phone Head Office if you have to and get them to tell them.

That kind of thing.

You've got to work for your Revelation. It's not that they take the piss, it's just that they fly off the shelves! I got the very last black beauty 335 in the UK before they stopped making them (lawsuit probably). Phew...

Try to hold on a bit longer. Draw a line in the sand. Play hardball even. But that only works to a certain extent with this company I can tell you. Be respectful. And if they can't deliver at a certain point, cut your losses, without bitterness, then check the upcoming stock in a few weeks/months time. You might be surprised! Your guitar will probably be there on the shelf, waiting. They don't advertise. They do NOT tell you when batches are coming in - they tell you f**k all!

They are enigmatic like that. But don't be despondent. They will build it, and it will come!
"you're all GUI whores." - banned KVR member 'snooky'.

User avatar
Uncle E
KVRAF
11082 posts since 22 Nov, 2000 from Southern California

Re: Your next guitar revisited

Post Wed Oct 09, 2019 8:35 pm

tapper mike wrote: ↑
Wed Oct 09, 2019 3:41 pm
The full humbujer tone will sound like a slightly beefed up 59
Like a SD Bennedetto PAF
My experience has been that it's more than slightly beefed up. It's very loud, lacking in dynamics and high-end. For a PAF sound, I would actually recommend getting the Hot P-Rail and running it in parallel instead of series.

With that said, a pair of P-Rails provides many great tones, especially when you combine them.

User avatar
Uncle E
KVRAF
11082 posts since 22 Nov, 2000 from Southern California

Re: Your next guitar revisited

Post Wed Oct 09, 2019 8:50 pm

codec_spurt wrote: ↑
Wed Oct 09, 2019 6:28 pm
I'm obviously from the camp that says the design is wrong here. The only thing they got wrong.
Man, you and Hendrix, what do the two of you know about tone?!? ;)

The Seymour Duncan Five Two pickup sort of deals with this by putting the brighter sounding magnets under the bass strings and the smoother sounding magnets under the treble strings. However, the consensus seems to be that they lack character.
That bridge pup will still cut like an ice-pick.
Try running your bridge pickup through a Ross-style compressor. It smooths out the harshness except at the initial first attack, giving your pick attack a nice "sting".

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