#1
If you have been following my threads, you'd understand that I have had the worst time with my set-up. I have a Mesa 4x12 with an Orange CR120 head, a Fender Jag with a Railhammer Alnico Grande pickup in the bridge, and I use my head's dirty channel for distortion. The Mesa is INCREDIBLY harsh to the ears. I like a very round, fat, and thick distortion tone without having to lose too much clarity. I love the head, but I can't seem to EQ correctly with the cab. The cab has Vintage 30's in it, and it is used and totally broken in. I recently picked up an MXR 6-band EQ to further help me to dial in the tone. This is my first EQ pedal, so I am pretty lost on how to correctly find the "harshness" that is bothering me, and then translating that to where I should turn down what EQ frequency. Any and all help is so appreciated! The EQ looks like this (from left to right): 100, 200, 400, 800, 1.6K, and 3.2K. From bottom to top, it looks like this: 18, 9, 0, 9, 18. I'm not sure if all of my amp settings should be at noon as well? They look like this: Treb: 12, Mids: 1, and Bass: 4. The Gain is at 4 as well.

Cliffs:
Mesa 4x12 Oversized cab sounds horribly harsh. (I want to love the cab/not trying to get a different one)
Orange CR120 Head (Love the head/not willing to sell it)
Fender Jag with Alnico Grande Bridge
Looking for a thick, fat, dirty sound without losing lots of clarity and not extremely square and Fuzzy, but still able to pack a huge sound.
Just bought a six band EQ (MXR) to help, but this is my first time using it.
How do I dial it in correctly and find the trouble areas causing the harshness?
Should my amp settings be flat? (Current settings: Treb: 12, Mids: 1, and Bass: 4. The Gain is at 4 as well.)
Last edited by dustin.schumach at Nov 11, 2016,
#2
experiment not only with the EQ but with your amps tone controls as well. mids at 1 could be an issue why run that so low? guitars are a mids instrument so I'm guessing that is your issue.
#3
monwobobbo With the already middyness from the Railhammer pickup and the natural middyness from the Mesa (from what I've heard at-least) wouldn't bumping the Mids up even more cause even more harshness?

The Railhammer pickup has the following numbers on its chart:

Treb: 5.5/Mids:6/Bass:6/Output:7.5
#4
Quote by dustin.schumach
-post-
How are you so sure it is the cab that is causing the harshness? I am certain it is not, it is loaded with V30's, an industry standard. Your "harshness" is in that: You are scooping mids which is a no-no as monwobobbo said. Not only that, but you have slammed the bass and treble frequencies to death. Set ALL the EQ controls (pedal and amp) flat, knobs pointing at 12 o'clock or EQ +/- at 0. "Harshness" frequencies are typically treble frequencies which is where you had boosted so high.

With the EQ flat across the board (and a bridge pickup selection for high-gain tones) you will probably have a much better basis for the tone. From there, make subtle adjustments to tone-shape how you need. Your EQ pedal only goes up the 3.2khz which is not very high, so any real treble reduction beyond that frequency band would need to be done on the amp's treble control.
Quote by dustin.schumach
monwobobbo With the already middyness from the Railhammer pickup and the natural middyness from the Mesa (from what I've heard at-least) wouldn't bumping the Mids up even more cause even more harshness?

The Railhammer pickup has the following numbers on its chart:

Treb: 5.5/Mids:6/Bass:6/Output:7.5
No. At least not to the degree where you have to scoop them out of the signal completely. Mids I consider to be the "meat" of the guitar signal. Harshness occurs around maybe 4khz and up. Also, I doubt those chart numbers were measured in any sort of critical, professional way.
Last edited by Will Lane at Nov 11, 2016,
#5
I don't know anything about their charts just that no mids on an amp isn't a good thing. you seem to be running the treble pretty high not much bass and no mids and then wonder why it sound like crap. sounds like to much treble and not enough of everything else to me. what type of music are you playing?
#6
ok looked that pickup up and you are confused. that chart is just for comparison to their other pickups and not what you think. the voicing for the pickup doesn't accentuate mids but that means you can't cut them out at the amp . now wonder it sounds like shit. try what will said and get back to us (without EQ Pedal). the EQ pedal is for fine tuning
#7
monwobobbo Thanks for the reasearch on your end! I play Alternative...More along the lines of Alice In Chains and Soundgarden (just for relevance sake). So, the fat tone is what I'm going for. I will try to mess with the amp now. Any suggestions on the settings?
#9
monwobobbo
Quote by monwobobbo
I don't know anything about their charts just that no mids on an amp isn't a good thing. you seem to be running the treble pretty high not much bass and no mids and then wonder why it sound like crap. sounds like to much treble and not enough of everything else to me. what type of music are you playing?
Not much bass? The bass is one notch away from being on full blast...
#10
Quote by dustin.schumach
monwobobbo Thanks for the reasearch on your end! I play Alternative...More along the lines of Alice In Chains and Soundgarden (just for relevance sake). So, the fat tone is what I'm going for. I will try to mess with the amp now. Any suggestions on the settings?


both of those bands live in the mids so you are doing it kinda backwards. as Will suggested start with all tone settings on amp at 5 and tweak from there. the EQ pedal as I said is for fine tuning using the frequencies on the EQ by adding or subtracting. it's all about experimenting. also make sue you don't overdue the distortion as that will muddy things up.

more often than not most here have different setups so recommending settings can be a bit futile. what works with my BC Rich Eagle and Peavey Ultra amp may not be right for your setup. best way to go is experiment and use your ears. helps you get better at dialing in a tone and in the end it's what works for you that counts
#11
dustin.schumach ok well all my amps go from 1-10 so sorry then yeah lay off the bass some
#12
Quote by monwobobbo
dustin.schumach ok well all my amps go from 1-10 so sorry then yeah lay off the bass some


No problem! I actually just noticed that the Orange is 1-11, haha. Actually, that's my bad for not noticing that. Sorry if I sounded like a dick, because it wasn't meant that way. Also, it's hard to express well via text, haha.
#13
Quote by monwobobbo
both of those bands live in the mids so you are doing it kinda backwards. as Will suggested start with all tone settings on amp at 5 and tweak from there. the EQ pedal as I said is for fine tuning using the frequencies on the EQ by adding or subtracting. it's all about experimenting. also make sue you don't overdue the distortion as that will muddy things up.

more often than not most here have different setups so recommending settings can be a bit futile. what works with my BC Rich Eagle and Peavey Ultra amp may not be right for your setup. best way to go is experiment and use your ears. helps you get better at dialing in a tone and in the end it's what works for you that counts


Agreed. I THINK I have a decent tone right now. I went back and played with some things on the amp. Since my 12o'clock is 5 for you, I will go by how you're reading the settings

Treb: 5 (12 o'clock), Mids: 8 (3 o'clock), Bass: 7 (2 o'clock). I still have to fool around with the gain a bit as well because that's currently on 9 (4 o'clock). Next, would be EQing that to make it tighter, right?
#14
dustin.schumach yes. a lot of players use an overdrve for that purpose but the EQ pedal will certainly accomplish that.
#15
I have the same amp. Try treble at 6 (1 o'clock) mids at 8 (3 o'clock) and bass at 4 (11 o'clock).
I also set the gain on 6.5 (1:30) and boost with a ds-1 with the gain on 0 level maxed and the tone anywhere from 10:30 to 1:30 depending on how I feel.

I use that set up for beefy metal tones that cut without icepick highs. Backing the gain off a hair or turning off my od gets more rock and grunge sounds.

Edit to add:
The mids on these amps really warm up the sound. If I keep my treble and bass settings and turn the mids down it gets brighter. The eq is very interactive with itself, so depending on settings you can get it very dark or bright sounding. But that mids knob is what really matters on it.

It looks like you may have used o'clocks for your settings. If so try my settings but roll the treble off a bit.
Last edited by Liaztraht at Nov 13, 2016,