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KailM
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#1
Please hear me out before you give examples of how they can be used successfully for just that. I know you can get good tones out of them; I have one.

It's just that it seems like if I tune below D standard it starts to get muddy real quick. I run pretty beefy strings as well. As stated in my thread a few days ago, I'm in the market for a new V-shaped guitar. The Schecter I played had a 25.5" scale and really sounded good when tuned down. I feel like a lot of it had to do with the longer scale length.

I know a lot of doom metal bands actually go for the sludgy, wooly sound of a downtuned SG or Les Paul, but I'm not after that tone. I want to tune to C Standard/Drop B and still have it sound pretty crisp and tight with a decent ammount of gain.

My dilemma is, I really do like Gibson/Epi Flying Vs; they sound and play wonderfully when tuned to E standard, and perhaps D, but I'm concerned that if I were to buy one I'd just be dissapointed in how it handled lower tuning.

Is this just a case where MY guitar sounds muddy when moderately downtuned, or is that a characteristic of all 24.75" scale guitars? I do have a pretty tight, clear pickup in the bridge so I know that's not the problem. Thanks!
Last edited by KailM at Jul 2, 2012,
guitar/bass95
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#2
It's either in the setup of your guitar or in your amplifier, I see no reason why the neck scale would affect the clarity of the sound, except if you are using too thin strings or your truss rod is set up wrong.

EDIT:and since you have a 6505 It's either in your setup or I'm wrong, both are very much possible.
Last edited by guitar/bass95 at Jul 2, 2012,
Nico the Great
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#3
24.75" can handle metal fine. If you're really heavily downtuned, just have appropriate-tension strings on there. It shouldn't really be an issue
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#4
I prefer 25.5" scale to Gibson scale. It just feels right to me. That said, I do like Explorers for that sludgey/stoner metal sound.
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#5
I use an SG in B standard/Drop A with .13s and a wound 3rd. I don't have any problems with clarity. Intonation is a bit dodgy, but that's easily fixed with a proper set up; I just had to reverse the position of the 3rd and 2nd string saddles.

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KailM
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#6
Quote by guitar/bass95
It's either in the setup of your guitar or in your amplifier, I see no reason why the neck scale would affect the clarity of the sound, except if you are using too thin strings or your truss rod is set up wrong.

EDIT:and since you have a 6505 It's either in your setup or I'm wrong, both are very much possible.



I'm using .11-.54s; they ain't no spaghetti noodles. Action is pretty low but not buzzing.

Scale length DOES affect tone, why else would there be baritone guitars with 27"+ scales? They help maintain a tight low end.
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#7
its either your amp or your pickups.

I use my les paul for drop c and lower all the time, the lwest I ever went was drop a...and thats pretty low for a non baritone. Sounded fine, little murky, bt still had bite.
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guitar/bass95
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#8
Quote by KailM
I'm using .11-.54s; they ain't no spaghetti noodles. Action is pretty low but not buzzing.

Scale length DOES affect tone, why else would there be baritone guitars with 27"+ scales? They help maintain a tight low end.


Yes, the scale is longer so that the strings are tighter across the fretboard, and no, scale lenght has nothing to do with tone, they affect string tension and the right scale lenght helps with different tunings, but low tuning should be possible with 24.75 scale, the problem should be with the strings being too slack, the tone shouldn't be affected.

Quote by Controlpanel
its either your amp or your pickups.

I use my les paul for drop c and lower all the time, the lwest I ever went was drop a...and thats pretty low for a non baritone. Sounded fine, little murky, bt still had bite.


Also this. Either you EQ the amp wrong or your pickups are the wrong kind.
Last edited by guitar/bass95 at Jul 2, 2012,
Roc8995
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#9
^Scale length has a lot to do with tone! Absolutely it does. Don't you think that string tension would effect how the guitar and strings vibrate? If you ever get the chance, try a 24.75" scale strat sometime. It's a completely different beast.

Anyway, 11-54 are big strings but if you're going down to drop B that's still not large enough on a 24.75 IMO. I think with the right pickups (EMGs, usually) and large enough strings, a 24.75 can do just fine for drop tunings without being sludgy, but you are going to need to experiment with string gauges and pickups. I'd start with a bigger string gauge, and adjusting your pickup height and amp settings, and then go from there. I'm not familiar with the pickups you're using so I can't comment on whether those are contributing.
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#10
I would advise going up a string gauge, and then trying it before purchasing a new guitar.
Controlpanel
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#11
Quote by Roc8995
^Scale length has a lot to do with tone! Absolutely it does. Don't you think that string tension would effect how the guitar and strings vibrate? If you ever get the chance, try a 24.75" scale strat sometime. It's a completely different beast.

Anyway, 11-54 are big strings but if you're going down to drop B that's still not large enough on a 24.75 IMO. I think with the right pickups (EMGs, usually) and large enough strings, a 24.75 can do just fine for drop tunings without being sludgy, but you are going to need to experiment with string gauges and pickups. I'd start with a bigger string gauge, and adjusting your pickup height and amp settings, and then go from there. I'm not familiar with the pickups you're using so I can't comment on whether those are contributing.


I agree with half of this post. I use 12's for drop b on my les paul, but I do not think that scale length nessisarily euqates to different tone. standard fender (25'') and Gibson (24.75") are not "worlds apart...its only about 1/4'' :wink:

I agree with the gent who suggested a higher guage. I used to use 12s for drop C, and they were too tight. I used o use 11's, and they didn't feel right, I use DR 10's now, and I think they're working for me..its all preference.
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#12
Quote by Controlpanel
I agree with half of this post. I use 12's for drop b on my les paul, but I do not think that scale length nessisarily euqates to different tone. standard fender (25'') and Gibson (24.75") are not "worlds apart...its only about 1/4'' :wink:

What Strats are 25"? I'm just using the American Standard as a reference, and it's 25.5". http://www.fender.com/products/americanstandard/models.php?partno=0113002719
guitar/bass95
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#13
Quote by Roc8995
^Scale length has a lot to do with tone! Absolutely it does. Don't you think that string tension would effect how the guitar and strings vibrate? If you ever get the chance, try a 24.75" scale strat sometime. It's a completely different beast.

Anyway, 11-54 are big strings but if you're going down to drop B that's still not large enough on a 24.75 IMO. I think with the right pickups (EMGs, usually) and large enough strings, a 24.75 can do just fine for drop tunings without being sludgy, but you are going to need to experiment with string gauges and pickups. I'd start with a bigger string gauge, and adjusting your pickup height and amp settings, and then go from there. I'm not familiar with the pickups you're using so I can't comment on whether those are contributing.


But I mean that it shouldn't make the tone all muddy and sludgy on lower tunings, I've seen a lot of people tuning down with 24.75 necks and they sound just fine.
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#14
One of my main guitars is a Dean TC Cadillac- a 24.75 scale guitar- and it is tuned in Robert Fripp's New Standard Tuning. It handles it just fine with the appropriate string gauges.

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#15
I use my LTD Viper-500 (24 3/4) and works perfectly with down-tuned metal. As already have been mentioned get proper strings for that and you are set (11's or 12's)

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KailM
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#16
Quote by Roc8995
^Scale length has a lot to do with tone! Absolutely it does. Don't you think that string tension would effect how the guitar and strings vibrate? If you ever get the chance, try a 24.75" scale strat sometime. It's a completely different beast.

Anyway, 11-54 are big strings but if you're going down to drop B that's still not large enough on a 24.75 IMO. I think with the right pickups (EMGs, usually) and large enough strings, a 24.75 can do just fine for drop tunings without being sludgy, but you are going to need to experiment with string gauges and pickups. I'd start with a bigger string gauge, and adjusting your pickup height and amp settings, and then go from there. I'm not familiar with the pickups you're using so I can't comment on whether those are contributing.



Thank you! And it goes beyond just string tension. I read a very convincing article in Guitar Player magazine awhile back and the jist of it was that the longer length of strings between the two stop points (bridge and nut) can greatly affect the tone. They talked about how a shorter scale guitar can sound warmer and generate richer harmonics because the notes are compressed together over a shorter distance -- something to that effect anyway. Conversely, longer scales were reported to provide a brighter, snappier, and twangier tone. Does it mean a 24.75" strat will sound like a Les Paul? Or a 25.5" scale LP will sound like a Strat? No, absolutely not. But the article claimed that scale length has a lot more to do with distinct tone than a lot of people realize.

I didn't write the article, but it seemed pretty factual and founded in physics.

Oh, and my Dimarzio D-Sonic is advertised to be great for drop-tuned metal riffage, I doubt it's the problem. However, that doesn't mean EMGs or SD Blackouts wouldn't be even better...
Last edited by KailM at Jul 2, 2012,
Offworld92
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#17
Thick strings and EMGs. Problem solved.

Specifically I'd be looking at 13's for C Standard. I use 12-56 for Drop C on my EC-1000, and the low C is too loose IMO.

D'Addario has a 12-60 set that I want to try out. If you like low tension in your higher strings, that could be better for Drop B or C standard than a 13 set.

You'll likely need to work on or get a new nut.
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Last edited by Offworld92 at Jul 2, 2012,
xCaLeBx1225
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#18
I think you definately can, I run EB Beefy Slinkys with my les paul (epi standard with the single 85 in the bridge) tuned to drop B/Bb and I love the way it sounds. It is a good idea to have a legitimate metal pickup, though, and only that, I see your LP has one nice pup (the D-sonic) but your using the other one stock, alot of muddiness may be coming from that. Another good Idea is some VERY good tuners, it is annoying as all hell when you tune to drop B and it won't hold, because of the extra tension caused by heavy strings, I suggest locking tuners, or for a LP gibson deluxe tuners are amazing. But I think alot of the muddiness your getting is from pickups....try some more pups, dimarzios, EMG's, BKP's if you can find some, or just listen on youtube, and buy one and install it with your dimarzio, put on some heavy strings (I prefer Beefy Slinkys but if you want super tight just go with Not even slinky) and I guarantee you'll have tighter tone


Also if you want to hear some somewhat power metal kind of stuff done in drop C/B with a LP listen to some trivium, they use a LP with EMG's for some of their songs and it sounds tight
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Last edited by xCaLeBx1225 at Jul 2, 2012,
CkY freak
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#19
I use CGCFAD on a 24.5 inch scale with 10's and it seems to do fine!
KailM
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#20
Well, I really never use my neck pickup for distorted playing, it's there for cleans and occasionally warmer leads.

This is with the D-Sonic. I EQ my amp pretty close to noon on most settings, including gain. It's not like I'm scooping the mids and expecting a chorus of angels. I run a TS-9 as a boost and an MXR 10-band EQ with a slight low-mid bump. Speaker is an Eminence Governor -- not a muddy speaker by a long shot.

I will try some of these suggestions (even heavier strings). I might just buy a single .56 or .58 and see how that affects the tone. The nut on my guitar is already taxed with a .54, so I wouldn't leave it for long with a bigger string. I do feel that the .54 is a little loose when I tune to drop C. Ultimately, I'm going to get a new guitar, probably with EMGs or Blackouts. If I find that I can get a satisfactory tone by upping the string gauges on my Les Paul, then I'll consider a Gibson or Epi Flying V.

Otherwise, I'm gonna go with something with a longer scale. The Shecter I played made my riffs sound so tight and articulate -- I've just got to get that sound! But maybe that had more to do with the Blackouts rather than the scale length. The biggest problem is I can't really try all this stuff -- the nearest Guitar Center is 12 hours away and the local shops have next to nothing for metal-oriented equipment.
Last edited by KailM at Jul 2, 2012,
Offworld92
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#21
Different pickups, especially drastic differences like an active vs a passive will always be a much larger difference than something like scale length. Not that it's not important, but you have to look at your order of effect.
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Roc8995
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#22
Quote by Controlpanel
I agree with half of this post. I use 12's for drop b on my les paul, but I do not think that scale length nessisarily euqates to different tone. standard fender (25'') and Gibson (24.75") are not "worlds apart...its only about 1/4'' :wink:

It's 25.5" on a strat, and that's a pretty significant different in the world of scale. Again, if you have the chance to try a short-scale strat or a long-scale Les Paul, I bet you'll hear the same things I do. It's pretty neat to hear how much of the strat/tele twang comes from just the scale length. For even more extreme references, notice how the tones from, say, a Rickenbacker (super short scale) or a Soloway (super long scale) coincide with the more subtle changes in measurement of the standard Fender/Gibson scales.

Quote by guitar/bass95
But I mean that it shouldn't make the tone all muddy and sludgy on lower tunings, I've seen a lot of people tuning down with 24.75 necks and they sound just fine.

Didn't say it has to. I just disagreed with your claim that scale length has "nothing to do with tone." It does, so it's probably a contributing factor here.
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#23
Quote by Roc8995
^Scale length has a lot to do with tone! Absolutely it does.


thank you.

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#24


EMGs.
24.75
12-60
Drop Ab


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#25
My 7 string is 24.75" and I play it in Drop A with 10-58 and I still get a pretty tight low end.
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#26
you get more clarity from the lower notes with a longer scale length. this is the reason why bass guitars have a longer scale length, and why grand pianos are shaped the way they are, among other things.

i think it's quite possible that you just might not like the drop tuned tones you can get out of a 24.75" scale guitar, in which case, it doesn't make a difference how many people tell you 'i tune 6 string bass tuning on my 20.5" scale guitar with 8-38 gauge strings and i don't have any problems'.

still, like others have suggested, try getting some thicker strings and see if that works for you, before deciding whether you need a new guitar or not, as that can help tighten up the low end a bit, too.
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KailM
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#27
Quote by Blompcube
you get more clarity from the lower notes with a longer scale length. this is the reason why bass guitars have a longer scale length, and why grand pianos are shaped the way they are, among other things.

i think it's quite possible that you just might not like the drop tuned tones you can get out of a 24.75" scale guitar, in which case, it doesn't make a difference how many people tell you 'i tune 6 string bass tuning on my 20.5" scale guitar with 8-38 gauge strings and i don't have any problems'.

still, like others have suggested, try getting some thicker strings and see if that works for you, before deciding whether you need a new guitar or not, as that can help tighten up the low end a bit, too.



Haha, I figured as much. I've been around UG long enough to know that if I posted an idea such as the one in this thread I'd receive dozens of responses to the contrary. Though I had hoped to hear from some folks who run 25.5" scales or larger. I've even entertained the idea of getting a baritone guitar but I've heard their necks are kind of thick. I played a Gibson Les Paul Bari once and I played it fine though...
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#28
I DO have some longer-scale guitars. I was just answering the question asked- 24.75 can handle (some) low tunings just fine, if set up to do so with the right strings.
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#29
Some people use them. Some people like them. However, some don't. Maybe you're one of them? I think one of the guys from Nile use a 24.75" for A, and it works for them. Works for them; I would never use their tone.

It could be any number of things. You don't have the right effects to get the tone you want; not the right EQ; perhaps your amp cannot handle it well; maybe your pickups are working against you; maybe your strings aren't the right tension for your preference.

And the big one. Maybe you have the right tension... but you don't like the thickness of the strings. This is where it all comes down to scale length. If you had a longer scale, you could use thinner strings. You would have far less fundamental (i.e. mud) in your tone and more high-end. When you go shorter and use thicker strings for equivalent tension, the string starts to become less flexible and behaves more like a rod than a string. This is where the fundamental plays more of a part to the sound, and where the overtones become less apparent. Perhaps you simply don't like that aspect.

Since my guitar's an eight-string, it has a scale length of 27". But it's an Ibanez, so it's neck is very thin (and I think it's extremely comfortable). Having fooled around with many strings and tunings on this guitar and a 25.5", I can confidently say that I prefer the tone on my 27". Comparing gauge of string to tension, I could only go as low as C on my 25.5" before I felt the tone was really lacking. But that's just me; I prefer less fundamental, and clearer overtones. That's something I couldn't get on my 25.5" to my satisfaction.
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#30
Quote by KailM
Though I had hoped to hear from some folks who run 25.5" scales or larger.

Then why did you ask a question that ruled out that kind of response? Your question was specifically directed towards 24.75 guitars.
It also didn't make sense to mention it because as you said, we all know it works fine with longer scale lengths.
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#31
^^Well, really I'm talking about all scale lengths; maybe my original question wasn't clear enough. I'm going to get a new guitar regardless, but the responses I'm getting will help me to rule out certain models.

So far, most people have stated that shorter scale guitars with the proper strings are okay for tight, clear, low-tuned metal. So now I'll consider some 24.75" scale guitars again -- I had thought that only a 25.5" or longer would do...
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#32
If scale length has nothing to do with tone, tell me why they make multi-scale guitars?
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#33
^ To be pedantic, I'd argue that it plays a more immediate role in feel, and of course in needing or not needing small or thick strings. If you're tuning to A standard, its just more economical to get a 27" and 11s or 12s than to use a 24.75" with 14's or 15's.
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#34
http://novaxguitars.com/info/technical.html

I think this article might clear up some misconceptions, and is overall an interesting read about how Scale Length is relevant to tone and string tension. Of course don't treat it as gospel, but more as a guideline - after all personal preference is the most important thing

Quote by Dayn
Some people use them. Some people like them. However, some don't. Maybe you're one of them? I think one of the guys from Nile use a 24.75" for A, and it works for them. Works for them; I would never use their tone.

From one of the interviews i heard that they use 0.080" for the A string. It's quite thick (in fact as thick as your average A string on a bass guitar), so i suppose it has some decent tension on it. But i agree, what works for them, might not work for anyone else.
Last edited by El_Bozo at Jul 3, 2012,
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#35
24.75" Scale guitars aren't worth considering for anything. You should only use 30" short scale basses strung up with guitar strings for drop tuning.
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#36
Quote by kangaxxter
24.75" Scale guitars aren't worth considering for anything. You should only use 30" short scale basses strung up with guitar strings for drop tuning.



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#37
Quote by KailM
Is this just a case where MY guitar sounds muddy when moderately downtuned, or is that a characteristic of all 24.75" scale guitars? I do have a pretty tight, clear pickup in the bridge so I know that's not the problem. Thanks!

You got it there. It's either your pickup or your amps. Do not turn that gain knob on your amp all the way up.
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#38
just because something is possible, doesn't always make it optimal.
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#40
Quote by El_Bozo
http://novaxguitars.com/info/technical.html

I think this article might clear up some misconceptions, and is overall an interesting read about how Scale Length is relevant to tone and string tension. Of course don't treat it as gospel, but more as a guideline - after all personal preference is the most important thing


From one of the interviews i heard that they use 0.080" for the A string. It's quite thick (in fact as thick as your average A string on a bass guitar), so i suppose it has some decent tension on it. But i agree, what works for them, might not work for anyone else.


Thank you -- that was a very interesting read, and what I hoped would appear in this discussion.