WTF does it do? I feel like a major noob for asking, but I really want to know after about 6 months of playing .
Quote by DownInAHole.
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Turn one of your tone knobs all the way down, and the other all the way up. Flick it from one end all the way o the other end to create a cool wah-wah effect.

Otherwise, I rarely touch it.
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five toggle switch is set up for a threep pickup guitar all the way to the top or bottom turns only one pickup on the very middle is all three turned on and the other two do a combnation of neck center or brdige center
I have one it's basically a pick-up selector mine switches between my bridge humbucker,the first pickup in my humbucker and my middle pickup then it selects just my middle pick up then my middle and neck pick-ups then just the neck pick-up. So in short more Tone control
i think 5-way selectors are to much of a hassle im a 2-humbucker man myself + i found a cool trick with 3 way selectors, if u hve a selector that springs or bounces in a since, (i dont have any other way to describe it) but what u do is turn the neck pickup off and turn the bridge pickup on then u bump the pick up from the middly position to the down position with ur thumb and index finger in a way where ur thumb is knocking the selector down and if u do it light enough it will bounce back but still connect casuing a kill switch effect but saving u money it really cool
5 way switch means on a guitar like a strat, you can use either the neck, neck and middle, middle, middle and bridge,or bridge in that order. On a fat-strat, it goes neck-neck+middle-middle-middle+one bridge coil-bridge.
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Quote by Anonden
You CAN play anything with anything....but some guitars sound right for some things, and not for others. Single coils sound retarded for metal, though those who are apeshit about harpsichord probably beg to differ.
A 5-way switch, like any other, is set up the way whoever wired it decided to do it. No two are necessarily alike. Some are pickup selectors, some are coil-splitters, some combine two pickups in serial in one position, and the same two in parallel in another position. Some are phase reversal (adding or subtracting the signals from two pickups when the pickup selector has both pickups active). And so on.

So to know what any particular 5-way switch does on one particular guitar, you need to do two things: RTFM, so you know what each position does electronically, and LISTEN to them all, so you know what to expect from each position audibly.
I heard that on a stratocaster, you can have the switch imbetween the different settings, is this true?
5 way switch DOWN high pitch sharp attacky treble sound.

5 way switch UP low heavy deep softer bassier sound.

its about tone control. if your high pitched solos are hurting people's ears flip the switch up for a more pleasant sound.
If you dont find theory interesting, then DONT study it. IF your TRULY serious about playing guitar(enjoying), then EVENTUALLY you WILL WANT to study it.