#1
I recently got an Epiphone Les Paul Standard Pro, and this is probably a noob question, but I need some info on the volume knobs. I know they each control a certain pickup, but I'm not sure if they are working properly. The knobs work in a sense that they give full output when set at 10 and no output when set at 0, but unlike other guitars or volume pedals for example, the knobs do not gradually lower the output of the guitar at each interval. For me, they seem to merely decrease the sustain or distortion of the sound, for example where I have a nice distorted sound when set at 10, I would get a crunch sound at 5. Both settings produce a sound just as loud. Is this how the knobs are supposed function, or is something wrong? Thanks
#2
Quote by moskeedog
I recently got an Epiphone Les Paul Standard Pro, and this is probably a noob question, but I need some info on the volume knobs. I know they each control a certain pickup, but I'm not sure if they are working properly. The knobs work in a sense that they give full output when set at 10 and no output when set at 0, but unlike other guitars or volume pedals for example, the knobs do not gradually lower the output of the guitar at each interval. For me, they seem to merely decrease the sustain or distortion of the sound, for example where I have a nice distorted sound when set at 10, I would get a crunch sound at 5. Both settings produce a sound just as loud. Is this how the knobs are supposed function, or is something wrong? Thanks

That's how the knobs function. You can always go to a tech to set them to just lower the volume, but it's your choice. I personally like how you can go from distorted to crunch to clean with just a sweep of the volume knob. That's what people like Zakk Wylde and Robb Flynn(Machine Head) do for their clean sounds.

EDIT:The volume should gradually also decrease(not as much as the gain). When you set it at zero is there no sound at all?
Well, you can call me crazy
You can call me wrong, 'cause
See I was born a liar, albatross
Fly on, fly on
Last edited by Fryderyczek at Jan 4, 2015,
#3
This is because of the taper of the volume pots. Normal, linear taper pots almost work more like on-off knobs, especially with higher output pickups where all the audible change in sound occurs somewhere between 0-3 and everywhere else, it's as if the knob has no effect. Audio taper pots help this to some extent, but still have a pretty abrupt drop off once you get down to 7 or so on the control. RS guitar works used to sell (they still might) cts pots with a custom taper that really worked quite well. From what I remember these were fairly expensive for just being pots. I had them for volume in my les paul for volume and they were fantastic but I probably wouldn't buy them again and would just go with normal cts audio taper pots in the future.
Last edited by al112987 at Jan 4, 2015,
#4
Yes, the guitar is completely silent when the knob is set at 0. I like being able to control the tone through my guitar as well, I just wanted to make sure nothing was wrong. I know some people use their knobs for volume swells, but I never do. I don't think it should be referred to as a volume knob then really, since it just helps shape the tone. But yes the sound doesn't gradually decrease, at least not noticeably. It's almost exactly the same volume, until I hit 0, in which case all sound is completely cut off.
Last edited by moskeedog at Jan 4, 2015,
#6
Ok so I understand that audio tapers cut the sound out differently from linear tapers, so I assume these are used in Les Paul guitars.
Quote by Fryderyczek
The volume should gradually also decrease(not as much as the gain).
This isn't the case though, the volume knobs change the tone of my guitar, decreasing the distortion as i turn the knob down, which is good actually since it allows for a wider variety of tones. I just want to make sure everything is normal, that these knobs aren't supposed to work the way volume pedals do, decreasing volume while maintaining distortion. Thank you all again for your responses
#7
Quote by moskeedog
Ok so I understand that audio tapers cut the sound out differently from linear tapers, so I assume these are used in Les Paul guitars.
This isn't the case though, the volume knobs change the tone of my guitar, decreasing the distortion as i turn the knob down, which is good actually since it allows for a wider variety of tones. I just want to make sure everything is normal, that these knobs aren't supposed to work the way volume pedals do, decreasing volume while maintaining distortion. Thank you all again for your responses

Don't worry, it all works properly.
Well, you can call me crazy
You can call me wrong, 'cause
See I was born a liar, albatross
Fly on, fly on
#8
Remember that the volume pots don't raise the volume (unless you have active pickups), they only lower the pickups output so at "10" you should be getting the full output of the pickup. A lot will depend on how your amp handles the incoming signal. I'm about to try installing a set of low impedence pickups on one of my Epi Les Paul's but I am a little worried about how my amps input will handle it (VOX VT30) but for a super clean signal I understand it is the best way to go. We'll see.
#9
Quote by moskeedog
I just want to make sure everything is normal, that these knobs aren't supposed to work the way volume pedals do, decreasing volume while maintaining distortion. Thank you all again for your responses

That's also how volume pedals work as well. All of these things are dependent on the amount of gain of the amp and where in the chain the volume change is being done. When playing with distortion, you're pushing the front end of the amp and the sensitivity is higher. Changing the volume in the front of an amp, whether it be from a guitar or pedal will just reduce the amount of signal going into the amp. It makes it cleaner. But this volume change in the effects loop will make things quieter.
#10
Yeah you're right. I actually didn't think of it that way, makes so much sense. Thats why they recommend volume pedals be placed last. Thanks