#1
Which kind of power chords sound better: the ones done with two fingers (root note and fifth) or with three fingers (root note, fifth and octave)? It's definitely easier to play the first one, but does it also sound much worse?
To some power chords you can even add a lower octave (E chord in E tuning). What about that one?
Discuss!
Thanks!

Atm I play with two fingers, but I want to use the best sounding method, but can't decide.
#2
3 fingers. it always sounds so much fuller, its the way ive always played them.
What is this about a lower octave?
#3
I think it depends on the sound you're trying to achieve with any given song. Power chords with the root, fifth, and octave often sound more "full," for lack of a better word. A lot of times a fuller sound is the best choice, but I'm sure there are other situations where a root-fifth power chord would be more appropriate. I don't think either one sounds "better" than the other. Play what feels right!
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#4
I usually play with the octaves in place, to practice at first try barring the fifth and the octave with your pinkie and the root with your index as normal, as this starts to get better, play the root with your index, fifth with your ring and octave with your pinkie, practice makes perfect!!
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#5
I used to like the first one (root and fifth). But it's not as loud. That wasn't the reason I changed, though.
#6
I usually play with the octave - I like how it sounds better. The only time I'll go to the root-5th version is if I'm playing something where there is really fast movement between several power chords.
#7
i usually go root-fifth-octave or root-octave. i never use root-fifth except for on bass guitar.
#8
It depends which sound you like.
Root and fifth is usually used in metal. I like to alternate between them.
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#9
Well, as the great Papa Het once said, power chords with the octave sound fuller, but as you add more notes in the original notes lose some of their definition in a way. In other words sometimes a root-fifth power chord sounds a little sharper (as in more defined).
#11
I tend to play root fifth, but I occasionally do root-fifth-octave
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#12
I play the three note power chords. They sound better. I can see you going for the 2 note chord if you want the rhythm guitar to be less prominent. But otherwise IMO 3 note is superior.
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#14
I always use the 3 note power chord. That way if I accidentally hit the fifth note harder than the root, the root still stands out. It also sounds fuller.

There is also a note that I use sometimes that sounds AWESOME if you play it right.

Here is the standard A5 power chord:

e-------
b-------
g---2--
d---2--
a---0--
E-------

Here is the awesome 6-string power chord

e---5---
b---5---
g---9---
d---7---
a---7---
E---5---

Needless to say, it is a bar chord that is a little hard to play because of the four-fret stretch, but again, it sounds AWESOME.
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Last edited by GoIrish668 at Dec 12, 2009,
#15
I use 3 finger when playing powerchord that need to stand out. But when I need to have a more bassy sound, I play it with 2 fiinger with some palm mute. That's the way I do it and it works for me. I know you can do the other way around, but I don't like the sound of the higher octave when I palm mute, but it add so much with no palm mute.
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#16
I always play three-note power chords. They sound fuller and richer, mostly because of the extra overtones created when playing the octave.

Speed isn't an issue because I play all power chords with two fingers. Index and ring. Just lay your ring finger flat across the top two strings.

WHAT HAVE YOU DONE
#18
I use root-fifth-octave and fifth-root-fifth
and the most awesome Power Chord, the Sus2 Power Chord.
As in:


---------------
---------------
------------11-
--7----9----9--
--7----7----7--
--5----7-------
I do not want to have a signature anymore.
#20
in my case depends on the song i'm playing, in master of puppets the i only use the root and the fifth but in smells like teen spirit i use the 3 notes cause it gets a much wild sound, i sometimes use the entire chord in minor or major. depends on the sound u r trying to get.
#21
Usually I just do two fingers, but then bar the fifth+octave with my pinky.

And I quite often use a lower octave added, too. For example when I want to play a D5, I will often play:

e--------
B--------
G--------
D---7---
A---5---
E---5---


Instead of the original fingering. It sounds so much fuller or something, I love the sound
#22
Quote by jax5150
Well, as the great Papa Het once said, power chords with the octave sound fuller, but as you add more notes in the original notes lose some of their definition in a way. In other words sometimes a root-fifth power chord sounds a little sharper (as in more defined).

But how does Papa play the 3 note chord? I know he plays root and fifth with pinky and index just like I do. Barree with the pinky? Barre with ring finger? Or with different fingers? If you play fast and palm mute, it's best still to use the root with fifth only. You just don't have the time to hit the octave and while pm-ing it also sounds bad.
#23
For the thrashy stuff like metallica/megadeth i'll usually use two-fingered power chords for fast riffs as they can be moved around the fretboard much faster.

Other than that, i'll include the octave in all other power chords.
#24
I definately favour the 3 string one, but I use whichever sounds best in the correct situation. I don't particularily like the sound of the inversion, though.

But check out these!

E----
B----
G-6-6
D-6-4
A-4-4
E-3-3
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#25
Quote by RDSElite
I use root-fifth-octave and fifth-root-fifth
and the most awesome Power Chord, the Sus2 Power Chord.



Does not exist, it stops being a "Power Chord" when a third note is added.


I always liked the 6-string open E PC.
#26
I play with the octave. It sounds better imo. And wouldn't a sus2 power chord just be a sus2? I love inversions too. They sound proggy to my ears
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#28
i use the root, fifth, and octave...thats just how i learned it...i "thought" it was cheating to just use the root and fifth when i first learned, so now its almost habit to use it. although there are times i don't use it now, its mostly habit, and i like the sound
#29
Depends on how fast I'm playing. I use 3 fingers to get a more whole sound, but if I'm playing speed metal stuff, then only 2 fingers. And with only 2 fingers, I can do George Lynch style stuff with the chord
#30
Quote by Nilpferdkoenig
Does not exist, it stops being a "Power Chord" when a third note is added.

That is true, but it's still said to be a power chord because if you just say sus2, people assume it's a normal sus2 chord shape in open position.
#31
I enjoy playing root-fifth-octave power chords, but I only use two fingers. I lay my ring finger across two strings, usually. I also enjoy the sus2 power chord, but if I'm right... Isn't it not a power chord?
#32
i started using root-fifth power chords when i got my 2nd and 3rd fingers caught in a surface planer a few years ago. i use the 2 fingered position predominantly now as its easier for me to perform faster chord changes (easier for metal). occasionally i'll play root-octave power chords but mostly root-fifth
#33
Quote by Amarant
Which kind of power chords sound better: the ones done with two fingers (root note and fifth) or with three fingers (root note, fifth and octave)? It's definitely easier to play the first one, but does it also sound much worse?
To some power chords you can even add a lower octave (E chord in E tuning). What about that one?
Discuss!
Thanks!

Atm I play with two fingers, but I want to use the best sounding method, but can't decide.


For chrissakes, play them, listen, decide.

Can't decide? You don't have to! Great!