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Grateful Dead Music Forum

A place to talk about the music of the Grateful Dead 

 #120184  by tapestry
 Fri Oct 26, 2012 11:15 am
I just played with Melvin Seals, Jimmy, Pete, Dave and Kat in Saranac Lake NY and Dave and I got to compare guitars and talk gear for a while during sound check.

Dave currently has a Troy post and I have a warmouth. Both guitars have the same electronics. We played through dave's twin (d-120s) and a GK amp.

Dave's guitar and my guitar sound very, very different. He said mine was more "boingy" and he liked the tone very much. We thought it was because my pickups were very close to the strings...closer than on his guitar, so we adjusted his and it was a little better. But wow, the warmouth sounded real nice.

It seems like every single piece of gear makes all the differences, some more than others. The other thing i realized is how much of the "sound" is in the hands. Dave is an amazing guitar player and it really shows. I look forward to his new guitar and to what that will bring him....i secretly wanted him to play my guitar up in Saranac Lake to hear him wail on it!

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Dave's Troy Post (left) Mik's Warmouth (right)
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 #120192  by zambiland
 Fri Oct 26, 2012 12:43 pm
If I'm not mistaken, there is a very big difference between the two guitars, bolt on and set (or neck through). That could definitely account for boinginess. Are the scale lengths the same?
 #120205  by NorthboundRain
 Fri Oct 26, 2012 4:24 pm
I can't tell be looking what the scale lengths are but Dave's guitar is a 24 fret which pushes all of the pickups closer to the bridge. The electronics maybe be identical as far as brands but unless you're both using components that follow identical low tolerance specs there can be a 20-30% variance there too.

I don't think that bolt on vs. neck affects tone much (bolt on is superior IMHO) but neck through guitars do seem to make a slight difference.

Got to see Dave a few months ago here in Portland as was really impressed by his playing and how well he captured Jerry's "vibe".
 #120212  by Chuckles
 Fri Oct 26, 2012 8:19 pm
Mik, so cool you hooked up with these guys! I played Dave's Post at their Denver gig last summer (after, not during the gig!) and it is amazing the difference even between our two Posts. His has a much wider neck and thicker body. What I really dug though, was his f/x contol unit he had on his mic stand - brilliant piece of engineering!

I agree with others: your tone is unique and totally solid. Hope we get to jam sometime!
 #120238  by Rusty the Scoob
 Sat Oct 27, 2012 10:44 am
NorthboundRain wrote: I don't think that bolt on vs. neck affects tone much (bolt on is superior IMHO) but neck through guitars do seem to make a slight difference.
:peas: Sometimes I feel like I'm the only one who thinks this! I prefer bolt-on for my basses, I feel like there's a little more thump (probably the bass version of Boink) and a broader range of dynamics possible, while neck-throughs seem to be more smooth and almost compressed. But it's very subtle.
 #120240  by tcsned
 Sat Oct 27, 2012 11:05 am
I'm playing the first thru-neck I've ever owned and there is something a out that sounds a bit different - maybe brighter. I've got several bolt necks and a couple set necks that don't have that quality. Might be the wood but I suspect it has more to do with the pups being mounted in the neck.
 #120246  by dleonard
 Sun Oct 28, 2012 2:03 am
yo dudes i love this forum but I mean, its gonna be pretty much impossible to recreate one of the coolest people on earth. F* it, we're not gonna sound like the big guy, so paint you're own picture and do what he woulda done and say F it and have fun.
 #120249  by TI4-1009
 Sun Oct 28, 2012 10:00 am
tcsned wrote:I'm playing the first thru-neck I've ever owned and there is something a out that sounds a bit different - maybe brighter. I've got several bolt necks and a couple set necks that don't have that quality. Might be the wood but I suspect it has more to do with the pups being mounted in the neck.

good? bad? Just different?
 #120266  by tcsned
 Mon Oct 29, 2012 3:31 am
TI4-1009 wrote:
tcsned wrote:I'm playing the first thru-neck I've ever owned and there is something a out that sounds a bit different - maybe brighter. I've got several bolt necks and a couple set necks that don't have that quality. Might be the wood but I suspect it has more to do with the pups being mounted in the neck.

good? bad? Just different?
I love the guitar, I dunno what from the tone of the guitar comes from the neck joint. It's got a maple core and a redwood top, maple neck, ebony fretboard. I don't think that unless you have guitars that are in all other ways the same (same wood, same electronics) that you can really tell what comes from the neck joint. But I do love the guitar.
 #120290  by gr8fullfred
 Tue Oct 30, 2012 6:36 am
I don't think that bolt on vs. neck affects tone much (bolt on is superior IMHO) but neck through guitars do seem to make a slight difference.
I am going to disagree with you on that one. Talking guitars only. Bass is a different thing.
Neck thru guitars do, IMHO, feel and sound different, better in my opinion. And here is why, again just my opinion. The multi piece laminated necks are incredibly stiff. And because of the neck thru approach, the neck is longer than a bolt on or set neck. This longer piece of laminated wood, due it's longer length, has a lower resonant frequency. Low enough so it does not effect the sound. Low enough so that normal string vibration does not get the neck vibrating at resonant frequency.

I am currently playing a set neck and the neck vibrates like crazy when you play it. This means that energy is being absorbed by the neck and removing the energy from the string.

There definitely something different, better IMHO, about a neck thru. Recently played a Wolf neck thru that was very, very nice. Neck was stiff as can be. The entire Alembic/Irwin legacy is based on this approach, the must be a reason. (admittingly, Irwin deviated with Tiger, it is a set neck.)
 #120293  by helio
 Tue Oct 30, 2012 7:11 am
tapestry wrote: It seems like every single piece of gear makes all the differences, some more than others. The other thing i realized is how much of the "sound" is in the hands.
Saw Trey Anastasio the other night. Solo tour. He's playing his trusty Languedoc, of course, but on this tour also features a Fender Jaguar on a couple tunes. He jammed out a few solos on the Jaguar, and of course sounded great. He's a fantastic player regardless of the instrument, and clearly knew his way around that guitar's funky settings.

BUT... after one long jam with the Fender, he switched back to the Languedoc... and the difference was rather stark. The Languedoc is a very expressive guitar, and he's played it forever. The result? A huge array of nuances in the tone that were simply not there with the Fender. Trey really, really knows how to milk the 'Doc for all of it's quirks, and the resulting tunes sound all the better, more interesting, for it.

Trey's great regardless, but Trey + Languedoc is extra special.
 #120295  by TI4-1009
 Tue Oct 30, 2012 7:17 am
gr8fullfred wrote:
I don't think that bolt on vs. neck affects tone much (bolt on is superior IMHO) but neck through guitars do seem to make a slight difference.
I am going to disagree with you on that one. Talking guitars only. Bass is a different thing.
Neck thru guitars do, IMHO, feel and sound different, better in my opinion. And here is why, again just my opinion. The multi piece laminated necks are incredibly stiff. And because of the neck thru approach, the neck is longer than a bolt on or set neck. This longer piece of laminated wood, due it's longer length, has a lower resonant frequency. Low enough so it does not effect the sound. Low enough so that normal string vibration does not get the neck vibrating at resonant frequency.

I am currently playing a set neck and the neck vibrates like crazy when you play it. This means that energy is being absorbed by the neck and removing the energy from the string.

There definitely something different, better IMHO, about a neck thru. Recently played a Wolf neck thru that was very, very nice. Neck was stiff as can be. The entire Alembic/Irwin legacy is based on this approach, the must be a reason. (admittingly, Irwin deviated with Tiger, it is a set neck.)
So Les Paul was onto something with "The Log" then?