#1
I have been playing for 6-7ish months now. I quiet a lot every day easily and somedays upwards of 3 hours. However I play without a amp most the time as playing I can't use my amp because it is too loud, and if I plug my guitar into my computer my sound goes off and I like to listen to music while I play. How much of a difference does a amp make? Because I plugged it in last night and played some pantera like riffs with all the good stuff spider crawls, 12 fret speed picking and palm muting. I kept thinking I sucked but I plugged it in and I wasn't too upset with what came out I jumped around for atleast a hour playing what ever came into my head. Is this a thing? Am I actually not as bad as I thought because I feel super awkward playing infront of people and I wonder if I am just being stupid and should start playing with people.
#2
You should play with and without imo. You really can't train noise cancelling without using an amp.
#3
^ yeah. doing some practising unplugged is a good idea so that things like distortion don't mask your mistakes, but at the same time you also need to practise while plugged in so you can get used to playing with distortion too- a lot of people say distortion makes playing easy, and that's a bit of an oversimplification, at least in my opinion. It's more of a double-edges sword, IMO.
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#4
Quote by Dave_Mc
^ yeah. doing some practising unplugged is a good idea so that things like distortion don't mask your mistakes, but at the same time you also need to practise while plugged in so you can get used to playing with distortion too- a lot of people say distortion makes playing easy, and that's a bit of an oversimplification, at least in my opinion. It's more of a double-edges sword, IMO.


"Distortion making things easier" is a flat out lie, as far as I'm concerned (if we actually consider the playing to sound good) - but there's night and day between a clean tone, acoustic guitar and a distorted electric as you imply.

So OP, if you're playing a guitar unplugged you'll hear a lot of dynamics, as in a difference in volume between the notes depending on the variation in how hard you strike the strings. Amplify that, add distortion and those dynamics will be much smaller to non-existent (depending on how much of them there were and the amount of distortion)... But this also means that the small noises you make as you're moving your hands around, the open strings that's ringing when you're changing chords etc. are amplified hundredfold and turn from a minor annoyance to a real problem!

To take control of the instrument to the full extent will mean that you need to both be aware of how your playing sound unplugged and how it sounds distorted. I typically practice a lot without plugging my guitars in too, but the only thing that works is doing both.
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#5
If I need to practice quietly, I'll use something like the Korg Pandora PX5D and a set of headphones. The Korg has a number of amplifier sims to play through, a metronome, a tuner and a lot of other practice tools. There's an auxiliary input for an MP3 player, so I can play along with whatever I like. So it's *like* playing through an amp, except that I'm the only one that hears that.
#6
dspellman beat me to it. For quiet electric guitar practice, there are all kinds of devices that let you plug in & play with headphones.

I personally have 3 Korgs (2 Px4s and a Px5), and a Tascam GT-R1, and know that the popular Line 6 POD and highly regarded Boss Micro BR series devices are out there, too. All worth a look.

Many MFX (multi-effects) devices also allow headphone play. I have a DigiTech iPB-10, but there's a horde of a them out there.
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#7
After three decades of playing acoustic, I've found the compression and corresponding sustain associated with clipping to be very hard to manage, as is the long sustain of electrics in general. So I would say that in my case, playing amplified is essential to come grips with the difficulties involved in playing electric. - It could through a headphone amp, as already suggested.
#8
When I was starting out, I rarely played with my amp turned on.

When I decided to practice more with the guitar plugged, I noticed how much I sucked at muting strings. My playing was all over the place and it sounded terrible.

Playing with the amp turned on will also make you have a better perception of tone and you will get to know how to get the best out of your gear.

It's important to practice both plugged and unplugged. Today, I only practice unplugged when I only have like 30 minutes to practice or when I want to play a bit at night.