#1
I have a Squier Vintage Modified Stratocaster.

its metallic red, and the pickguard is red perloid. it looks ****ing sexy! here's a pic of how it looks like:

http://media.fmicdirect.com/squier/images/products/guitars/0301200525_frt_wlg_001.jpg

all the pickups are Duncan-Designed, which means they're pretty bright and hot.

At first I wasn't satisfied with the tone, it was a bit muddy and the sustain wasn't good in the cleans. I was aiming for something like John Mayer's Slow Dancing in a Burning Room or Gravity.

Then I watched a video where John said he loved the SRV strat because if its "resonaton". It had a very thin finish, which made the tonal vibrations, well, vibrate better. The guitar he helped make at a Fender factory which was a black Stratocaster (his primary guitar when he toured for Continuum), started losing its paint mere months since he started using it. Proof that he put a very, very thin finish on it.

And so then I continued my search for better tone, and I also read that removing your guitar's paint has no effect on your tone, because pickups only pickup through magnetism or the vibrations of the strings or something like that. Less paint could do nothing to do that. Well **** you, was what I thought.

If you stick your cellphone's speaker thats playing music to your guitar pickup, the pickup would pickup ( ) the sound and play the music in the amp. From cellphone to amp.

And then I thought, so why wouldn't the pickup, pickup normal sound from its surroundings?

Then I took to the operating table.

I removed the black shielding paint until I could see the wood in the tremolo cavite, and also in the pickup cavite. My theory is that the sound of the guitar would echo inside there, and the pickups, being right where the sound was being echoed, would pickup that "all-natural", clean, J.Mayer sound.

And now the guitar doesn't sound so muddy, there's now more "bite" on the high notes, and actually all the notes sound more killer.

There's more to a guitar than just electronics. You have to understand it. It used to be a living thing dammit, it's not a machine. It had, or still could have a soul. You have to love it so it would love you.

If you try to prove everything I've said is wrong and take everything in logically, like a scientist with all his numbers and figures, you are not an artist and don't understand music.
#2
The thickness of the paint can, in fact, affect tone, but it's indirect. The pickups pick up whatever the strings are doing. The more the body resonates, the more the strings vibrate, the longer the vibrations last, the longer the note is sent to the amp. This should be obvious if your experiment worked. There's no practical difference between removing the finish from the trem cavity and removing the finish everywhere else, except for degree. The best sounding guitars are generally also the ones that sound best unplugged. Also, unless you have really crappy pickups, the sound "echoing around" at them won't matter in the slightest. They only pick up vibrating metal, not vibrating air.

Incidentally, removing the finish inside the trem cavity has been a popular mod since the seventies, at the latest. It's a good way to take some of the finish off without changing the look of the instrument. Another good way to increase sustain is to move the pickups further from the strings and turn up the amp volume. Reduces magnetic pull on the strings.

Also, I can't tell if your closing remark is serious. Please please tell me it wasn't so we can be pals.
Money beats soul every time.

Money beats soul...every time.

Money...beats soul...every...goddamn...time.
#3
Your're actually right, every detail of a guitar affects tone. I'm a person who tries to understand everything in a scientific way, except my guitars. Each guitar really does have it's own character.
#4
Quote by Piglizard
Your're actually right, every detail of a guitar affects tone. I'm a person who tries to understand everything in a scientific way, except my guitars. Each guitar really does have it's own character.

Yes everything done effects tone. I have even had discusions about the differences in wall voltages effecting tube and ss amp tone. If you want consistant tone you need a power conditioner. Have you ever had one place you play at that you always sound crappy and cant tell why? The wall voltage could be different Like 100 volts vs 112 or even 120.
To the paint / finish subject I have a crappy Mockingbird special that I took of the onyx finish and about 1/4 inch of bondo off the top part of the carved top. And have two thin coats of minwax satin poly on it now. It has massive amounts of string sustain now even for a bolt on neck. I also have a metal neck plate used as a spacer/shim for the neck. I was very shocked at how much better the sustain is now. It also has a wraparound bridge even though they suck for single string replacement I believe they are the best for sustain.
What the hell!!!
#7
1) Learn how a guitar pickup works. If your pickup is "picking up" those "echoes" in the cavities? Then your pickups are microphonic and you need to get them fixed.

2) Using some common sense for a minute, as yourself...

Using a custom shop strat into a Dumble or Two Rock...
Paint in the pickup cavity...

Which of those two do you think have more of an effect on your sound? Btw, I guarantee you that John Mayer's strat is shielded. And also, the the shielding paint in the cavity is so unbelievably thin that it has absolutely zero effect on tone. If you wanted to ask yourself how much the finish matters? It's not talking about the shielding paint... it's talking about the grain filler, primer, color and clear coats that all go on the outside of the strat. Any effect that the cavity shielding paint has on the vibrations of the guitar is roughly the equivalent of pissing in the ocean compared to the rest of the finish on that guitar.

If you try to prove everything I've said is wrong and take everything in logically, like a scientist with all his numbers and figures, you are not an artist and don't understand music.
The people who who designed electric guitars did so with science in mind. Besides, you also just tried to "prove" everything you said was right using your "logic." Poorly conducted science is STILL science.

There's more to a guitar than just electronics. You have to understand it. It used to be a living thing dammit, it's not a machine. It had, or still could have a soul. You have to love it so it would love you.

Last edited by al112987 at Jan 8, 2012,
#8
Guitars aren't living things. They're quite inanimate, and every detail of how they work can easily be explained scientifically, whether you like it or not. They could actually be considered "machines," if that's the vernacular you want to use, they're just machines that you don't fully understand yet.
Feel free to call me Kyle.

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Just so you know, I read everything you type in a Mike Rowe from Dirty Jobs voice.

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I mean in Kyle's case, it is in the best interest of mankind that he impregnate anything that looks at him funny...
#9
There were several trees that were alive in each guitar. Depending on your beliefs it may have a soul or spiritual energy of some form. My guitars have more soul then Little Richard.

Hug a tree bro. Its only gay if get a boner.
#12
Quote by Bigwah
My theory is that the sound of the guitar would echo inside there, and the pickups, being right where the sound was being echoed, would pickup that "all-natural", clean, J.Mayer sound.

There's more to a guitar than just electronics. You have to understand it. It used to be a living thing dammit, it's not a machine. It had, or still could have a soul. You have to love it so it would love you.

If you try to prove everything I've said is wrong and take everything in logically, like a scientist with all his numbers and figures, you are not an artist and don't understand music.

you are so smart. i've been longing for someone halfway intelligent to explain these things to me. do you think i should clean out my cavity?
#14
Making a guitar out of a bucket will sound almost exactly the same as a guitar made from a nice piece of alder with no finish on it, as long as all the dimensions of the scale, strings, bridge, pickups, ect were the same.

The finish has jack to do with the sound, the wood, somewhat, the pickups, is the heart of the guitar, it's what picks up the sound, and no, it doesn't pick up echos, it pickups up disturbances in magnetic fields, when when you yell into them, the strings still vibrate and the pickups pick that up. Try yelling into pickups with no strings on, you'll get next to nothing. The cell phone is picked up by the pickups because there is a magnet in the cell phone driving a speaker, thus disturbing the magnetic field of the pickup.


You over evaluated this thing wayyyyyyyyyyyyyy to much.
#16
Quote by TNfootballfan62
Guitars aren't living things. They're quite inanimate, and every detail of how they work can easily be explained scientifically, whether you like it or not. They could actually be considered "machines," if that's the vernacular you want to use, they're just machines that you don't fully understand yet.

So glad you're finally coming around, Kyle.

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Quote by Raijouta
Unless its electronic drums.

BURN THE WITCH!!!!!
#17
If you stick your cellphone's speaker thats playing music to your guitar pickup, the pickup would pickup ( ) the sound and play the music in the amp. From cellphone to amp.


......

really?
Prs se Holcomb is the answer
#18
Ya, really.

And do you know how holding your cell-phone close to your guitar makes those beepity-boop noises? That's actual sounds coming from the phone, just really REALLY softly. Your pickups are just really good microphones.
#21
Quote by ethan_hanus

You over evaluated this thing wayyyyyyyyyyyyyy to much.
Somehow he both over-evaluated AND under-evaluated.

This is thread of the year-worthy material, 2012 getting off to a strong start.
Last edited by al112987 at Jan 8, 2012,