#1
Fairly new player here and shopping around for a new guitar that I'll be happy with for a long time..(Currently have a cheep Iby w/ FR) Mostly looking for one that feels the best to play on the neck and I think I've finally found the right neck shape that I like.

I was looking for something with an FR but I'm not sure that I really need it, and if that's the case then it would open up a lot of options for me of course. I play mostly metal, but also 90's alternative, classic rock, and blues. At most I play with a few friends and will play the lead rolls in the songs that we choose to cover, which lately has been stuff like Toadies, Metallica, Sabbath.

So while dive bombing is fun when I'm screwing around and given the fact that I'm a newer player, do I really need an FR? Would I miss it if I don't have one or would it be wise to stick with a fixed bridge and work on my solo skills and technique?
#2
I don't play much super modern metal, black album Metallica at the latest unless it's the odd Dethklok track for fun, but I never used the FR on my Jackson RR1 so I ended up selling it for a Gibby.

The hassle of not having to painstakingly reset it every goddamn time you change a string is worth it unless you're using it all the time, IMO.
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#3
I'd go hardtail & work on technique. But if you do go for an axe with a tremolo, don't cheap out on the trem.
#4
if you think you'll use it then go for it. What's stopping you? But if the guitar you'll buy is cheap then it's better to get fixed bridge. You know, on a cheap guitar the Floyd will most likely have problems with keeping in tune.
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#5
Probably the biggest question is do you want to play songs that are in different tunings on the one guitar? Because that's a massive pain with an FR system. The general stuff that people always complain about taking a long time isn't really so bad - string changes and tuning up can be done only marginally slower than a fixed bridge. It's when you just want to change tuning quickly that it can be a pain, because you've got to go in the back and adjust the springs too.


Personally I like having an FR even though I don't use it all that much. I've got other guitars where I can change tunings quickly if I need to, and my FR guitars each have one tuning that they stay in. I like the rock solid tuning stability and I like how it feels under my hand.

If I was only going to have the one guitar, I think I'd have a fixed bridge, but with multiple guitars I'll happily have an FR for every tuning.
#6
I'd only get a Floyd Rose if you've got enough money to buy a good one. Cheap Floyds are way more trouble than they're worth. Avoid them like the plague until you can get at least a Floyd Rose 1000, or an Ibanez ZR (found on the cheap S series Ibanez guitars).

Assuming you have enough money to get one of the above, consider the issue that the guitar is obviously going to require a lot more time and patience to set up. For beginners, this can be very taxing, especially when it comes to adjusting the intonation on such a bridge. Basically, the way the bridge is designed makes adjustments a pain in the ass.

You need to also consider how much you'll be changing tunings. The more often you need to change tunings, the less desirable a Floyd becomes. A Floyd needs to be set up all over again if the tuning of the guitar changes, which is a pain in the ass.

Breaking a string on a Floyd in a live situation is devastating. The bridge relies on string tension to keep itself in tune, so the loss of one string that's delivering that tension sends all the other strings drastically out of tune, making the guitar unplayable. That's a pain in the ass.

There is some sustain loss with a Floyd Rose as opposed to a fixed bridge. That's a pain in the ass.

Bending a string makes the other strings go flat. This is a pain in the ass when doing double bends, as the static note will always be flat.

But provided that you've got a good quality Floyd, and you've set it up properly, you'll have a guitar that you can't get out of tune no matter how much you wank on the bar. And that is awesome.

If you're only a beginner, I wouldn't recommend getting a Floyd because having such a feature on a guitar can distract beginners from learning how to play the guitar properly, and they end up using the bar as a crutch. That and the aforementioned problems a Floyd Rose brings can be very taxing for someone who is inexperienced.
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Last edited by T00DEEPBLUE at Dec 21, 2014,
#7
If it'll be the only guitar you'll have I'd say go with a fixed bridge, specially if you're into metal. A fixed bridge is a lot easier to set up and if you're into metal you'll change your guitar's tuning quite often which may require some set up on a fixed and will always require some annoying set up on a floyd rose.

I have a floyd rose, got it because of Dimebag, and even though it's really fun to play with it it can get repetitive pretty fast if you're not creative with it, which is a pretty tricky kind of creativity to develop. I keep it tuned to drop C and have another guitar (with a fixed bridge) that allows me to have a considerably wide tuning range with 0.11 string gauge, from E standard down to drop C# and D standard and it requires a pretty quick set up to feel right.

But if you really decide to go floyd, remember you can't go cheap with the piece unless you want to have some annoying headaches.
#8
And after all that (and I felt pretty much the same way about them early on in my playing career), I have a bunch of guitars with Floyds and my last guitar purchase had a Floyd.

I do some alternate tuning stuff, but I'm lazy and have a Variax that does that very easily (with a Floyd, no less). I love the fact that the guitar stays in tune no matter what I do with it.

There's certainly a place for a hard tail, though...
#9
I used to have a bunch of guitars with floyd's. As I advanced on guitar, I sold them all and now all my guitars are fixed bridge. If that tells you anything.
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#10
As a new player buying your first proper guitar i'd strongly recommend against it.
#11
Thanks for all the feedback!
I am looking for a used LTD EC or MH 1000 to give you an idea of my price range. I haven't done much in the way of changing tunings other than basic drop D stuff.
I guess what I'm really asking from the more experienced long time players is if I don't get an FR, are my bends and vibratos going to develop better (to compensate)? Or other techniques for that matter.
Last edited by basudz at Dec 22, 2014,
#12
Just purchased The ESP JH-600 it comes with the locking Kahler Bridge. I would find something with the locking Kahler. Most of my other guitars have the FR, but the Kahler is great because you can set it for fixed, or go nuts. Never goes out of tune, and I've crushed on it pretty good. Also, being able to lock it makes string changes lightning.
#13
go for a hard tail. less to worry about. and i have an OFR on one, and three prestige RG's with different trems, they are great. they are the most played guitars i own, except i have been spending a lot of time on my teles. do what you want, but hardtails are nice once in a while.
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#14
Quote by basudz
Thanks for all the feedback!
I am looking for a used LTD EC or MH 1000 to give you an idea of my price range. I haven't done much in the way of changing tunings other than basic drop D stuff.
I guess what I'm really asking from the more experienced long time players is if I don't get an FR, are my bends and vibratos going to develop better (to compensate)? Or other techniques for that matter.

How good you get at a given technique depends more on you than the limitations or benefits of your gear.
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#15
Quote by dannyalcatraz
How good you get at a given technique depends more on you than the limitations or benefits of your gear.


Yeah, you're right..I guess I'm just wondering if people have found FR's to be a distraction in the learning process.. Looking back to your beginnings and thinking..If I didn't have an FR I'd be so much better at vibrato's now.. That kinda thing..Of course I could get an FR and practice the hell out of getting a good clean vibrato technique, but then why get the FR if I'm not going to use it as others have said..

Conversely I could get the FR and down the road my vibratos might just be average or sloppy because I used the FR to help supplement them in my beginnings. That's just an example of what I'm wondering about here, and I'm probably thinking into it way to much, but you know hindsight is 20/20 as they say right?? lol
#16
Quote by basudz
Yeah, you're right..I guess I'm just wondering if people have found FR's to be a distraction in the learning process.. Looking back to your beginnings and thinking..If I didn't have an FR I'd be so much better at vibrato's now.. That kinda thing..Of course I could get an FR and practice the hell out of getting a good clean vibrato technique, but then why get the FR if I'm not going to use it as others have said..

Conversely I could get the FR and down the road my vibratos might just be average or sloppy because I used the FR to help supplement them in my beginnings. That's just an example of what I'm wondering about here, and I'm probably thinking into it way to much, but you know hindsight is 20/20 as they say right?? lol


You are thinking way too much on this. see how it feels in your hands if possible and then go for it.
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Quote by andersondb7
alright "king of the guitar forum"


Quote by trashedlostfdup
nope i am "GOD of the guitar forum" i think that fits me better.


Quote by andersondb7
youre just being a jerk man.



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#17
Quote by trashedlostfdup
You are thinking way too much on this. see how it feels in your hands if possible and then go for it.


+1


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#18
I reckon tune-o-matic style bridges give have better resonance compared with floyds, every guitar i've played with a floyd has always felt less alive than one without.

I still love floyds for mucking around and going crazy in solos but they're always a bugger to restring and setup and i guess each style has pros and cons.

Really no one can tell you which one you will like better till you play lots of each style bridge to find out.
#19
It depends on what to use it for!

If you are into Dimebag then or something. Even Kirk do not use a FR that much for anything really musical. The end of Bellz or Thing that should not be or some wank in live solos.

But can you set it up so it works every time? You do not mind the bitch to change strings or tunings on the fly like a drop low E to D and back up again.

I got so tired of any locking vibrato early on so I got my Jackson RR without one and I still got the guitar. The FR style ones are gone for good.
#21
Thanks for the advice..I don't think I'm at the skill level to even warrant the use of one right now. I'm not improvising solos yet and so at this point it's just a novelty really. Maybe I'm better off staying away from an FR until I can actually play solos where it would then become an added benefit that I could actually use correctly.
#22
So the only reason you'd get a Floyd over the stock tremolo is because you want to use the whammy bar in the opposite direction. In my opinion, I'm with @dannyalcatraz on this one: Get a hardtail, build up your technique. The idea behind a "fixed" bridge like a hardtail bridge is that, since it won't move half so much (it really shouldn't move at all), the sound and vibrations of the strings will be reproduced in higher fidelity. So if you get an FR (really any trem) it won't sound quite as good as a hardtail. That's just what I've heard, though.

I would say you're on the right track; don't get one until you know that you need one. Otherwise, there's no point in getting an FR. I lay mainly the same genres, have a trem but never use the whammy bar. I think you're right in saying it's more of a distraction, anyways.

But, the value of playing and researching which guitar is best for you is priceless. Go into a local music store, and (ideally) see if you can take the guitar home with you to see how it sounds in your bedroom/music room/studio.

Just my two cents, bro.
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#23
Quote by uto998
So the only reason you'd get a Floyd over the stock tremolo is because you want to use the whammy bar in the opposite direction.


Nah I don't think so. Some floyds are decked so you can only go down with them. And you can set up a vintage strat-style trem, or wilkinson, to float so you can get some up-pull as well.

You get a floyd because you want to do crazy stunts with it which can either only be done on a floyd-style trem, or which are much easier to do/can be done better on a floyd-style trem. While still having a fighting chance of still being in tune at the end of said stunts. That's about the height of it.
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#24
Yeah, I guess I was wrong there. It will stay in a tune a little better and there are some things you can only do/do better with it. But still, IMHO, it's a distraction.
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#25
yeah there are definitely certain stunts which are difficult (if not impossible) to do without it.

i think it depends on the person and what he/she is trying to play as to whether it's a distraction or not. if you play the style(s) of music which needs one I don't think they're a distraction.
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Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

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#26
TS says he's gonna play
Quote by basudz
...mostly metal, but also 90's alternative, classic rock, and blues. At most I play with a few friends and will play the lead rolls in the songs that we choose to cover, which lately has been stuff like Toadies, Metallica, Sabbath.
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#27
Correct me if I'm wrong, but this kind of is what he's going to play:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SaFKQN1yTy8#t=31

You'll notice the hardtail bridge on the first guitar he uses. He does a trem towards the end, too.

Again, yes, FR is a novelty item that will allow you to do stuff that other bridges won't, so if you're looking to have a guitar that can do a lot of different stuff, yeah, go with the FR.
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Last edited by uto998 at Dec 23, 2014,
#28
Appreciate all of the advice..I'm gonna go for a hardtail and focus on my technique with both hands. I've been playing various different types the past couple of days and I noticed how much more comfortable my strumming hand is when I don't have the FR, or a big TOM in the way for that matter.
#29
^^It's a matter of adaptation, really. I remember I used to feel a lot uncomfortable when I got my tune-o-matic after playing with a trem bridge for years, and then felt a little uncomfortable when I got my FR too.
#30
Quote by basudz
Yeah, you're right..I guess I'm just wondering if people have found FR's to be a distraction in the learning process.. Looking back to your beginnings and thinking..If I didn't have an FR I'd be so much better at vibrato's now.. That kinda thing..Of course I could get an FR and practice the hell out of getting a good clean vibrato technique, but then why get the FR if I'm not going to use it as others have said..

Conversely I could get the FR and down the road my vibratos might just be average or sloppy because I used the FR to help supplement them in my beginnings. That's just an example of what I'm wondering about here, and I'm probably thinking into it way to much, but you know hindsight is 20/20 as they say right?? lol


Keep this in mind: A floyd rose (or any other tremolo really) can be used to bend notes much farther than you probably can with your fingers. They can also bend notes down, rather than up, which is impossible with finger bending. They can also apply vibrato to open string natural harmonics (the recipe of the divebomb), which is nearly impossible otherwise, unless you wanna do some neck bending tricks.

You shouldn't think of a trem bridge as a crutch for doing things that you could be doing with your fingers. Use finger vibrato when it feels right, and use a whammy bar for things you can't do without it. My first (and only) electric guitar has a floyd, and I use finger vibrato far more often, and always have. I pretty much only use the floyd for divebombs and trills.
#31
Quote by basudz
Appreciate all of the advice..I'm gonna go for a hardtail and focus on my technique with both hands. I've been playing various different types the past couple of days and I noticed how much more comfortable my strumming hand is when I don't have the FR, or a big TOM in the way for that matter.


I really don't like the feel of TOM bridges. I love how my floyd feels, in pretty much every way. If I were going hardtail, I'd want a hipshot style bridge.
#32
Just get a Floyd Rose guitar and a Tremol-No and you have the best of both worlds. You can switch between Full Floating Mode, Dive Only Mode and Hardtail Mode in seconds.
#33
^ it's a bit fiddly though

Quote by the_bi99man
Keep this in mind: A floyd rose (or any other tremolo really) can be used to bend notes much farther than you probably can with your fingers. They can also bend notes down, rather than up, which is impossible with finger bending. They can also apply vibrato to open string natural harmonics (the recipe of the divebomb), which is nearly impossible otherwise, unless you wanna do some neck bending tricks.

You shouldn't think of a trem bridge as a crutch for doing things that you could be doing with your fingers. Use finger vibrato when it feels right, and use a whammy bar for things you can't do without it. My first (and only) electric guitar has a floyd, and I use finger vibrato far more often, and always have. I pretty much only use the floyd for divebombs and trills.


+1
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Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?