I just recently started playing with other people alot despite having played for about 5 years already, and I was wondering if anyone had any advice about how to get the volumes and tones to sound good. For starters do you want lead to be louder than rhythm and if so how much?

Other than that, waht about pickups/gain/effects?
depends if you're talking in a purely rehearsal setting or if you're producing it in a DAW

in a rehearsal setting, the best option is to get everybody to setup in a circle and work up volumes from there until everybody can hear everybody clearly.

if for some ungodly reason you have 1 guitarist playing only lead and 1 guitarist playing only rhythm, i wouldn't recommend just cranking master as it'll drown out other instruments. instead work with your mids and keep your gain under 12 oclock for the most part - it might sound strange soloed out, but in the mix it will sit high and your tone will cut through. for rhythm you might be able to scoop a bit to back down, but for the most part you'll just have to play it by ear (no pun intended)

as for pickups/gain/effects, work with what you have. as you get new equipment and learn new things about sound, you can experiment, but for right now just have a sit-down and figure out how you can get everybody to sound clearly in a way that fits the style of music you're doing. if you don't have anything written yet, get a couple of cover songs and just have a rehearsal where you guys are jamming out and constantly adjusting

it takes time and it takes concentration and you need to always be listening, but while it's tempting to just jack up your volume/gain whenever you can't hear yourself, it will suffer in your group's overall sound and you'll end up having a volume war and never get anywhere
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