#1
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Seriousness:


My personal suggestion for those that want to become a better guitar player: practice unplugged. Not on an acoustic, not through the clean channel, but on an electric completely unplugged.

Say you're a metal player like I am: If you can make the guitar sound heavy and angry with no help of an amp or any effects whatsoever, chances are it'll sound even heavier and angrier when you plug up. It will also improve your right-hand technique, because you will be forced to pick every individual note with the beat.

Also, if you are learning a new technique such as sweeping, tapping, or those weird hard-as-fuck walkdown things that guys like Eric Johnson, Zakk Wylde, Gabe Garcia (from Black Tide), and Joe Bonamassa do, whatever the hell they are called: If you practice and perfect these things completely unplugged, you'll be better when you plug up.

Some guitar teachers will tell you to practice through a clean signal, which I guess can work the same way, but that just amplifies the dinks and squeals of the strings and sounds like a pig getting fucked. That just makes practice unbearable, which you don't want as that discourages practice.

Mastering techniques unplugged improves precision, which in turn allows you to use less gain on your amp. In my personal opinion, the better guitarists are the ones who don't require a shitload of gain to cover up mistakes.

Feel free to disagree with me, but don't blow up. Just offering my $0.02.
#2
Practicing on an acoustic does the same thing, but also builds your finger strength and dexterity to a better degree.
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#3
Definitely true, but practising with distortion and effects is also just as important. Anybody can do some fancy eight finger tapping on a clean electric, but doing it with distortion requires a lot lot more control. Also with distortion you will hear certain mistakes (such as letting strings ring) a lot more clearly. Plus it's always a good idea to practise a piece so that it sounds like it would if you were to play it live, so you get a feel for how it sounds, but also so you're actually playing the piece, if that makes sense.
Not disagreeing at all, just adding!
#4
I disagree. Theres alot you cant hear properly unplugged. Try practicing pinch harmonicsor palm muting...sure you can hear them, but barely. I agree with playing clean, but plugged in. Theres too many subleties that come out with amplification.
#5
Quote by StateFarmsThere
I disagree. Theres alot you cant hear properly unplugged. Try practicing pinch harmonicsor palm muting...sure you can hear them, but barely.
I can easily hear when I do pinch harmonics AND palm muting completely unplugged. If you can't then you are doing both of those techniques wrong.
#6
You shouldn't practice exclusively on one setting if you're trying to use others. Playing on a clean sound is a whole different world when compared to playing with distortion. You should practice both respectively.

Also, don't post misleading titles. There's no 'get rich quick scheme' when it comes to playing guitar. The only thing you described is general practice which is what everyone already knows to do. Whether it is unplugged, clean, distorted, or whatever, practice is practice is practice is practice is practice.
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Last edited by Scopic at Dec 23, 2011,
#7
The only thing I've found that I can't properly practice unplugged is sweeping; my fretting hand causes strings to ring - really annoying. And I couldn't hear it before when I was playing unplugged (which is how I often practice anyway). Mostly because I'm too lazy to actually get up and plug in - much more convenient to swing around in my swivel chair, grab my one guitar and jam away
#8
Quote by Ian_the_fox
I can easily hear when I do pinch harmonics AND palm muting completely unplugged. If you can't then you are doing both of those techniques wrong.


Yeah so you can hear every sublety to each note and exactly which harmonic overtones youve removed. No.

I play unplugged alot too, dont get me wrong, but as I see it if you want to learn to play through an amp, play through the amp.
#9
Disagree, practice both and/or practice the majority of the time on the settings you want to improve the most. Yep easy as that.

btw - Gain can actually be a difficulty level.. set it past 9 and play everything clean.. hhh
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Last edited by Slashiepie at Dec 23, 2011,