#1
everything goes to hell. my technique doesnt get any worse, but strings ring out a lot more, and I mute with both my fretting and picking hand. Could this be attributed to running heavy distortion through a ****ty 5 watt practice amp, or is something wrong with my technique? from clean to light distortion I don't suffer from such problems, and I don't think turning up the distortion would make my technique suffer, would it? just make any tiny mistakes more noticeable.

EDIT: I don't know if this would be considered light distortion actually, lol, so here'a pic.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/carlos_seo/865860803/

that is nearly the exact setting I'm using, except the knob on the left is turned down a little.
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Last edited by Shadow_Hawk at Feb 13, 2009,
#2
Distortion will make the strings ringing out more noticeable and more prone to feedback. It's part of playing at high gain to learn to keep superfluous strings muted. It's why you'll see guys like Hetfield (very tight rhythm player) with their hands covering strings always
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#3
I'd say it's probably your technique, I never understand it when people say to always practice on clean because distortion makes your mistakes MORE noticable not less.
Gear List:
B.C. Rich NT Jr. V (With Seymour Duncan AHB-1 Blackout in bridge)
Electro-Harmonix Metal Muff
Marshall MG15DFX
Jazz III picks
DR strings
Planet Waves Cables
#4
My guess is that you don't sound good clean, either. Make sure you're perfect when you play clean or without an amp.

Quote by LeperAffinity
I never understand it when people say to always practice on clean because distortion makes your mistakes MORE noticable not less.
That's why you play clean. You want to identify the areas in which you struggle.
Last edited by bangoodcharlote at Feb 13, 2009,
#5
Quote by Dopey_Trout
Distortion will make the strings ringing out more noticeable and more prone to feedback. It's part of playing at high gain to learn to keep superfluous strings muted. It's why you'll see guys like Hetfield (very tight rhythm player) with their hands covering strings always


I recently unanchored myself, so my hand is floating above the strings now, when I did put it back down (i guess VERY LIGHTLY palm muting) when it was distorted it made a tremendous difference.

Quote by bangoodcharlote
My guess is that you don't sound good clean, either. Make sure you're perfect when you play clean or without an amp.

That's why you play clean. You want to identify the areas in which you struggle.


my first eight months of playing (been playing for 14 months now) I barely ever plugged into my amp, and when I did it was always clean (had no distortion pedal or distortion settings, didnt understand gain controls ). My clean playing is pretty good; not saying its perfect, but definetely sounds good.
Quote by Zero-Hartman
The Bible is awesome. Revelation is so badass, I mean, dragons and angels and the devil having an epic battle in the clouds? Badass.
Last edited by Shadow_Hawk at Feb 13, 2009,
#6
Quote by bangoodcharlote
That's why you play clean. You want to identify the areas in which you struggle.

That's completely illogical.
Distortion makes mistakes more noticable, so playing with distortion helps identify the areas you struggle in. Playing on clean hides your mistakes.
Gear List:
B.C. Rich NT Jr. V (With Seymour Duncan AHB-1 Blackout in bridge)
Electro-Harmonix Metal Muff
Marshall MG15DFX
Jazz III picks
DR strings
Planet Waves Cables
#7
Quote by LeperAffinity
That's completely illogical.
Distortion makes mistakes more noticable, so playing with distortion helps identify the areas you struggle in. Playing on clean hides your mistakes.


which could explain the problem here, because I did practice clean for a ridiculously long time. it sounds good clean, but not so much distorted. gonna have to spend the next few weeks getting a good, clean sound while distorted I guess.
Quote by Zero-Hartman
The Bible is awesome. Revelation is so badass, I mean, dragons and angels and the devil having an epic battle in the clouds? Badass.
#8
Quote by LeperAffinity
That's completely illogical.
Distortion makes mistakes more noticable, so playing with distortion helps identify the areas you struggle in. Playing on clean hides your mistakes.
You have to practice with distortion if you plan to perform with distortion, but you lose a lot of subtle mistakes through the distortion. Distortion will let those unintentional harmonics stand out, but one is generally better distorted than clean.
#9
Quote by LeperAffinity
That's completely illogical.
Distortion makes mistakes more noticable, so playing with distortion helps identify the areas you struggle in. Playing on clean hides your mistakes.

this is what bc rich players actually believe
#10
Quote by ARYANMETALFIST
this is what bc rich players actually believe
Nice.

I say we turn this into a discussion of acoustic guitars, especially my Taylor (I really wish I had that thing at school).
#11
Quote by LeperAffinity
That's completely illogical.
Distortion makes mistakes more noticable, so playing with distortion helps identify the areas you struggle in. Playing on clean hides your mistakes.


I'm sorry, but this is a retarded statement. You can get away with sloppy playing alot easier with distortion, who are you kidding?
#12
It's not that clear cut. Depending on the kind of thing you are playing, distortion will either hide or highlight your weaknesses.

For example, if your picking is weedy, distortion will cover this up, at least partially. For a lick that requires a lot of control over your muting (for example, sweeps, or string skipping tapping), unwanted string noise will be a lot more apparent with distortion.
#13
Quote by ARYANMETALFIST
this is what bc rich players actually believe
Quote by blueriver
I'm sorry, but this is a retarded statement. You can get away with sloppy playing alot easier with distortion, who are you kidding?
Obviously neither of these people have played on both clean and distorted amp channels...

You can have the sh*ttiest string muting technique in the world (i.e., me) and sound good on the clean channel.
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#14
Quote by ramm_ty
Obviously neither of these people have played on both clean and distorted amp channels...

You can have the sh*ttiest string muting technique in the world (i.e., me) and sound good on the clean channel.

bro don't post
#15
Quote by ARYANMETALFIST
this is what bc rich players actually believe

And you tell people not to post? Your post was just a worthless attempted denigration of B.C. Rich players. B.C. Rich is just a guitar company that happens to make guitars that look "metal", the fact is they have some **** ones and some great ones, just like every other company. Personaly, just this statement makes me think of your opinion as completely worthless.
Don't judge a player on what guitar he plays.

Quote by blueriver
I'm sorry, but this is a retarded statement. You can get away with sloppy playing alot easier with distortion, who are you kidding?

Okay, try sweeping an arpeggio that includes the 12th fret (most apparent location) with no muting on clean.
Try it again on distortion and what you have is a piece of crap with some harmonics that ring out like a bitch.

Distortion highlights ringing strings and harmonics, making things blur together and generally sound bad unless you control it.
Gear List:
B.C. Rich NT Jr. V (With Seymour Duncan AHB-1 Blackout in bridge)
Electro-Harmonix Metal Muff
Marshall MG15DFX
Jazz III picks
DR strings
Planet Waves Cables
#16
Quote by LeperAffinity
Distortion highlights ringing strings and harmonics, making things blur together and generally sound bad unless you control it.


Maybe on certain positions on the fretboard but sweeps are way easier to make sound good with distortion. And blurring things togather is what makes distortion easier to hide mistakes with, especially with picked runs.
#17
Quote by LeperAffinity
And you tell people not to post? Your post was just a worthless attempted denigration of B.C. Rich players. B.C. Rich is just a guitar company that happens to make guitars that look "metal", the fact is they have some **** ones and some great ones, just like every other company. Personaly, just this statement makes me think of your opinion as completely worthless.
Don't judge a player on what guitar he plays.
That's just it, you're paying for a style, not a sound.

BTW, he's a troll. Check his name.

To T/S, I think you need to check your muting technique. You always need to mute somewhat when you're playing distorted.
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        L.
#19
Quote by blueriver
Maybe on certain positions on the fretboard but sweeps are way easier to make sound good with distortion. And blurring things togather is what makes distortion easier to hide mistakes with, especially with picked runs.


Michael Romeo's string skipping tapping runs. Seriously, having spent many hours on some of those, they will turn into absolute mush with distortion if you aren't doing a good job with the muting. The muting on some of those runs is a serious art form.

Sweeping - it depends. If you are playing a shape where you are using a different finger per string, distortion can cover up some ills, like not having good enough sync between your hands. But for shapes where you play several adjacent strings on the same finger, it will turn into mush if you aren't rolling your finger and muting correctly - but without distortion it doesn't sound too bad.

Most everything else, I agree with you, and in fact I spend a lot of my practice time playing clean.
#20
Personally i play everything on clean and distorted. If i'm doing chromatics, clean+distortion. Soloing, both again.

I find that playing clean will highlight subtle little mistakes. For instance if you're playing ever so slightly staccato clean playing will show this up, whereas it won't on distortion. If you're playing sloppy however, distortion will hide this to an extent.

I think playing with distortion if you're working on your technique is only good for one thing and that's muting. Obv if you're doing pinch harmonics and stuff distortion is gonna help, but as far as working on techniques in general go, working on clean will get you the best results for everything except muting.
Last edited by Ikonoklast at Feb 14, 2009,
#21
You have to practice both. Playing with high gain makes all the harmonics leap out so you can learn to tame those. Playing clean takes away a lot of the sustain that some players use as a crutch to 'smooth up' their playing and will thus make your playing smoother and flow better. Practicing both is a necessity.