Know Your Tone
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Dylan McKerchie — electric guitar

The Resonant Peak of a Pickup, What is it? and Does it Matter?

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The Resonant Peak of a Pickup, What is it? and Does it Matter? The Resonant Peak of a guitar pickup is one of these terms that we don't hear quite as often as DC resistance. The interesting thing is, The Resonant Peak is more or less the sum of all the other measurements. What do we Mean?  The DC Resistance tells us how many windings are on the coil based on the wire gauge and bobbin size. The Capacitance of the coil gives us an idea how it will process high frequencies based on the losses that happen within the...

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How To Keep a Bigsby in tune...

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How To Keep a Bigsby in tune... A tremolo/Vibrato system is one of those things that many people tend to love, hate, or put up with. Are you one of those people that bought a guitar with a tremolo system and very quickly locked it down because it wouldn't stay in tune? The Bigsby Specifically... The principles in this article apply to all tremolo/Vibrato systems, but the Bigsby seems to get a bad rap a lot more than a Strat style or Floyd style Vibrato. This is probably because once you put a Bigsby on your guitar, you are committed....

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Cable Length, True Bypass, and Buffered Input

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Does Cable Length matter? In a word..... YES... In our discussions about Scatter winding found here, we learned that anytime you have long runs of electrical conductors laying next to each other, there is a potential for capacitive loss. As we know, capacitors in their basic form are filters. The more capacitance something has, the more high frequencies it filters or cuts from the signal. Guitar cables, especially of poor quality are very susceptible to this. Cables longer than about 15 feet start showing signs of signal loss to a trained ear. When we add a pedal board, we usually almost...

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Do Eddy Currents Affect Your Tone?

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What are eddy currents? Do they affect my tone? An eddy current is caused when there is a flat piece of metal perpendicular to the magnetic field. The metal doesn't need to be magnetic. These eddy currents are small spirals of current that are generated in the metal surface They work in opposition to the magnetic field that causes them. This causes an interference in the magnetic field. This causes a disruption in the movement of electrons in the winding wire. This in turn has the potential to cause changes in tone. What Does it Mean in my Guitar? If...

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String Tension Explained.... Top Wrap? Bonus Footage!!!

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String Tension... What affects what? Bonus Footage on the Video!!!!! Les Paul Top wrapping... Yes, No? String tension is something we might take for granted once we have been playing for a while. The string of a particular mass being stretched tightly to a given tension over a calculated distance is what gives us our note. You can see the math to the right.  In real terms, The longer the scale of the guitar, the tighter the string needs to be pulled to get a given note if all other factors are the same. A 25.5" scale requires a higher...

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