#1
Hi again,

Apologies for another newbie question, but that's what I am. Reading on these forums I see people describing the sound of their guitar/amp, but honestly have no idea what they're talking about. Does anyone have any soundbites of different types of sound, for example muddy, sharp, fat etc?

Also, would you recommend a beginner to have a whammy bar (apparently tremelo is the wrong word according to the Ultimate Guide to Guitar on here), or are they more trouble than they're worth?

Thanks again, hopefully the questions will stop soon when I'm spending more time playing and less time on the internet.

HH
#2
my ibanez gio i started on has a whammy bar, it never caused me any problems... maybe if you started out on a floyd rose style trem then you might have some difficulties
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#3
it usually just requires a bit of experience to start understanding people's description of tone... when they say something sounds muddy, it means that the low frequencies of the sound don't seem very clear, like the distortion on the low end is overtaking the rest of the sound. if something sounds sharp tone-wise, it usually means that there is way more high-end than low or mid frequencies, and it makes for a very harsh sound.

a fat tone is when all ranges of EQ (bass, mids, treble) are well-balanced, especially the bass and low mids, and the sound is complex and rich, despite being only one instrument.

a whammy bar can't hurt, but you may have lots of other stuff to master before you get into serious whammy bar techniques. but having a whammy bar won't hinder your progress in any way.
#4
You don't need a whammy bar if you're a beginner, and I hardly use it when I play my brother's Cyclone. When it's muddy, it is when they are using distortion and you can hardly tell the notes apart, it sounds so bad. You had the right idea asking for sound clips, but I don't know if you'll find any.
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#5
No soundbites, but here's a description:

Muddy = Boomy sound, predominantly containing excessive bass. Makes it hard to hear individual notes and not pleasing to the ear.

Sharp = Kind of the opposite of muddy. A sharp tone will have predominantly more midrange and treble.

Fat = A sort of in-your-face type of tone. It's a very full tone and sounds nice to the ears.

Whammy bars....

It all depends. Some are more trouble than they're worth. On the bad ones, you can tune the guitar and just breathe on the guitar and it goes out-of-tune. On the good ones, you can hang from the whammy and when you let go, it all goes back to being in-tune. PRS makes a good whammy, as does Fender. There are some others, but that's a good start.

Tremolo is a bad description for a whammy, because tremolo means that the volume is varying up and down. Vibrato is the correct term, because it means that the pitch is changing. Therefore, it's proper to call it a Whammy or Vibrato arm.
#6
The first guitar I got was a Squier Strat with a whammy bar and it wouldnt stay in tune. Then I sold it and got an SX guitar with a Floyd Rose that stayed in tune perfectly. So if you actually care about your guitar staying in tune (which you should lol) get one with no whammy bar or with a Floyd. Theyre really not as hard to set up as everyone says they are
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#7
Wow - so many responses so quickly, thanks. The reason I ask for soundbites is simply because I used to play violin in my early years (well, 7/8 years ago, I'm only 19) and I can remember how difficult it is to describe a sound, although those descriptions make it somewhat clearer.

Regards whammy bars - I think I'll leave it for now. I'm assuming that I'd be looking at hundreds for a decent whammy bar/bridge that stays nicely in tune (GBP)?
#8
Actually, the guitar I got with a floyd was just $160 and was really a good beginner guitar. If you really want a whammy bar check out the ones with floyd roses on this website http://rondomusic.com/. Even if you dont want a whammy bar they still have some nice beginner guitars for cheap
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#9
Cheers - not as expensive as I thought. How do I recognise one with a proper FR? All the systems I've seen are non-locking so far unless they're on really expensive guitars. I'm based in the UK by the way.
#10
Quote by Hidden Hippo
Cheers - not as expensive as I thought. How do I recognise one with a proper FR? All the systems I've seen are non-locking so far unless they're on really expensive guitars. I'm based in the UK by the way.

Well, this has a FR: http://www.rondomusic.com/seg1stdmsl.html
Usually it says in the description if it has a FR. This has a licensed one, which is what mine has, and its pretty good to learn how to set them up and it stays in tune nicely. But a licensed FR is probably the best youll find for a cheap price
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