#1
I am completly new to guitar playing and am about to start learning. I was going to buy a guitar but my cousin had one so I'll be using his standard Strat and Roland Microcube amp. I want to play metal such as Iron Maiden and Megadeth and classic rock such as Led Zeppelin. What should my first purchase be to get that metal sound? Shoud I leave the triple single coil set up and just get a distortion pedal or change out the pickup in the bridge for a humbucker? Also which pedal or pickup do you recomend. I have a $200 budget right now but I have a job so I can save if needed. Thanks
#2
i think you should be fine with what you have. The Microcube has great distortion and is a great amp. It'd be more trouble that it's worth to change out a single to a humbucker. You could put a Seymour Duncan Hot Stack in the bridge, but it's still not gonna change your sound too much. Pedal's dont really go good with cubes, much less microcubes. If anythign I'd reccommend getting a cheap tube amp like and Epiphone Valve Jr. or a Palomino.
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#3
Pickups are often the most ignored factor when people are trying to change their tone. They're always after a bigger amp. I'm not sure how the Roland Microcube sounds, but pickups will make a world of difference no matter what you put in there. I would recommend Hot Rails oppose to modifying your guitar to accommodate humbuckers.
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#4
put some seymour duncan blackouts on it and for a pedal get an ibanez sm7
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#5
If you want your sound changed a lot I would personally buy an amp, but on a low budget that doesn't seem to be an option, so a pedal would be best. A pedal effects your sound more than pickups do, but an amp effects it overall.
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#7
Go for the pickup change.
Save another 50 or so dollars and get a Seymour Duncan JB humbucker.
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#8
Quote by stephen_rettie
just learn how to play first man, worry about sound and equipment when you can do the basics

You stole my idea!

But that's how to do it, you can still learn to play guitar with the stuff you have. Wait till you know you want to play it fully, there's no point getting expensive pickups and then give up guitar after a month.
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#9
i'd recommend learning how to play first, getting your style down, then looking for a new guitar if you see it fit. save your money for a bit so you dont have as much of a limit when you see something that makes you think "this is perfect"
#10
first of all i would take out the single coils and put in at least if not 2 then at least 1 humbucker
and a pedal i have no idea i use a grunge pedal so maybe that helps
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#11
Putting a humbucker in the bridge position would help for your more metal stuff, but you'll do fine with your setup as it is for now.
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#12
i'd recommend learning how to play first, getting your style down, then looking for a new guitar if you see it fit. save your money for a bit so you dont have as much of a limit when you see something that makes you think "this is perfect"


+1

The microtube's distortion models are good enough to get you started. Give it a year or more and you'll have a much better idea of what you'd like to upgrade to.
#13
Quote by stevenpollock
Pickups are often the most ignored factor when people are trying to change their tone. They're always after a bigger amp. I'm not sure how the Roland Microcube sounds, but pickups will make a world of difference no matter what you put in there. I would recommend Hot Rails oppose to modifying your guitar to accommodate humbuckers.


i have to disagree. I think pups are actually overated when it comes to affecting sound. im sure if TS upgraded to a humbucker from a single coil he would notice quite a difference, but a standard pup swap doesn't color your tone as much as people think it does, it merely brings out more dynamics between the guitar and the amp. And a pup swap for a microcube won't make much of a difference anyways
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#14
Quote by stevenpollock
Pickups are often the most ignored factor when people are trying to change their tone. They're always after a bigger amp. I'm not sure how the Roland Microcube sounds, but pickups will make a world of difference no matter what you put in there. I would recommend Hot Rails oppose to modifying your guitar to accommodate humbuckers.

No, they won't.
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#15
Quote by shredhead22
i have to disagree. I think pups are actually overated when it comes to affecting sound. im sure if TS upgraded to a humbucker from a single coil he would notice quite a difference, but a standard pup swap doesn't color your tone as much as people think it does, it merely brings out more dynamics between the guitar and the amp. And a pup swap for a microcube won't make much of a difference anyways

I concur. Most people come on here wanting new pickups...then are told to get a new amp. Not because it's 'bigger' but because it has better tone.
#16
Learn to play, and then worry about sound quality as someone has already said. Please try and ignore the idiots saying get such and such a piece of gear. You'll be fine with what you have.
#17
Quote by stevenpollock
Pickups are often the most ignored factor when people are trying to change their tone. They're always after a bigger amp. I'm not sure how the Roland Microcube sounds, but pickups will make a world of difference no matter what you put in there. I would recommend Hot Rails oppose to modifying your guitar to accommodate humbuckers.

Pickups are always the most overrated factor when people are trying to change their tone.
#18
People telling him not to get pickups, would you use a SSS strat for metal? You won't hear much difference between two humbuckers on a modelling amp (but the difference is still there), but a humbucker will just sound better for what he wants to play. Even if he gets the cheapest one going it'll help.

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#19
Quote by timi_hendrix
People telling him not to get pickups, would you use a SSS strat for metal? You won't hear much difference between two humbuckers on a modelling amp (but the difference is still there), but a humbucker will just sound better for what he wants to play. Even if he gets the cheapest one going it'll help.

If any smart arses go "IRON MAIDEN LULZ", I will end them.

Would you use a Microcube for metal?
#20
Quote by timi_hendrix
If any smart arses go "IRON MAIDEN LULZ", I will end them.


....but, but...iron maiden!!! uses the stratz!!! lulz


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Shreadhead22 had nothing helpful to say to me. He just immediatly started being a prick.

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#21
Quote by TheProducer
Would you use a Microcube for metal?


Yes, I would, if I was on a tight budget. You going anywhere with this?
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#22
Quote by timi_hendrix
Yes, I would, if I was on a tight budget. You going anywhere with this?

Yep.

He can spend all he wants on a humbucker it's not going to make him more 'metal' with the Microcube. Great amp, sure, but that ain't going to do it. A different amp would give him a bigger sound than a humbucker will with that amp.
#23
The microcube should get you heavy enough TS. When you've been playing for a bit and are ready to upgrade, than worry about the tone. Hell the microcube has the best damned distortion in its pricerange, you put pedals infront of it it will not sound to amazing.
#24
Quote by TheProducer
Yep.

He can spend all he wants on a humbucker it's not going to make him more 'metal' with the Microcube. Great amp, sure, but that ain't going to do it. A different amp would give him a bigger sound than a humbucker will with that amp.


Nice try.

If you can't hear the difference between a single coil and a humbucker, whoop-de-doo for you. A humbucker will handle the gain levels he'll be using better and the character of a humbucker will suit metal better than a single coil.

Oh, and the microcube is far from a great amp anyway. I happen to think it's a fizzy mess, but if he's happy with it I'm not going to make him upgrade.
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#25
Quote by timi_hendrix
Nice try.

If you can't hear the difference between a single coil and a humbucker, whoop-de-doo for you. A humbucker will handle the gain levels he'll be using better and the character of a humbucker will suit metal better than a single coil.

Oh, and the microcube is far from a great amp anyway. I happen to think it's a fizzy mess, but if he's happy with it I'm not going to make him upgrade.

You're sure a defensive assh_le. Sorry to threaten your internet manhood.

Yes, I can hear the difference between a single-coil and a humbucker. Pretty sure anybody can. A different amp would suit metal much better than that 'fizzy mess' that he has, but why make him upgrade? Get him to swap out his pickups instead. That'll be a much better use of his money, for sure.

And it's a great amp as a far an affordable beginner's amp goes.
#26
Quote by TheProducer
You're sure a defensive assh_le. Sorry to threaten your internet manhood.

Yes, I can hear the difference between a single-coil and a humbucker. Pretty sure anybody can. A different amp would suit metal much better than that 'fizzy mess' that he has, but why make him upgrade? Get him to swap out his pickups instead. That'll be a much better use of his money, for sure.

And it's a great amp as a far an affordable beginner's amp goes.


I lol'd.

I don't even know which side you're arguing for anymore.
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#27
Quote by timi_hendrix
I lol'd.

I don't even know which side you're arguing for anymore.

All I'm trying to say is:

Single coil + Microcube =/= metal
Humbucker + Microcube =/= metal

I think that most people can agree that maybe he should get used to playing it before he swaps out the pickups anyways. Maybe he'll find himself playing different genres, etc.

EDIT: He also wants to play Zeppelin, so we really would need to know what he plays most as well.
#28
Quote by TheProducer
All I'm trying to say is:

Single coil + Microcube =/= metal
Humbucker + Microcube =/= metal

I think that most people can agree that maybe he should get used to playing it before he swaps out the pickups anyways. Maybe he'll find himself playing different genres, etc.


He has $200 to spend, he could take $30 and buy a GFS humbucker and have a guitar more suited to his style of music. There's no need for him to upgrade his amp at this point, something like a microcube will last him as a practice amp for at least another year. But he can stick a bridge humbucker in his guitar to make it more versatile and suited to the styles he wants to play.

I think he's being very sensible, to be honest, he could be on here asking about a new guitar altogether.

EDIT: And a humbucker's more than capable of playing Zeppelin and metal, especially with a modeller like the cube.

Sorry if I came off as being an arse, I just think people telling him to buy a new amp straight away aren't thinking.
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#29


There's no problem at, bro.

I do agree that metal usually calls for a humbucker, fo sho.

And he is being sensible.

And I also agree that a new amp + single-coil =/= metal either.

I guess overall I just think he should try out what he's got for a bit, learn some stuff and develop his skills and his ears so he can more precisely define what he wants out of his sound.
#31
I dont really think when learning guitar at the very beginning that you want to play with a really high gain tone. I know it wont sound 'right' for the kinda music that you play but if your just starting out, then you will want to practice to make your playing 'flow' before you use high gain to smoothen out your playing for you. Micro cube is a great practice amp so learn to play before buying distortion pedals and higher output pickups.
#32
Quote by shredhead22
i have to disagree. I think pups are actually overated when it comes to affecting sound. im sure if TS upgraded to a humbucker from a single coil he would notice quite a difference, but a standard pup swap doesn't color your tone as much as people think it does, it merely brings out more dynamics between the guitar and the amp. And a pup swap for a microcube won't make much of a difference anyways


Indeed. What amp you have, imo, affects your tone more than pickups, or strings, or wood, or whatever it is.
#33
Quote by henryo
I dont really think when learning guitar at the very beginning that you want to play with a really high gain tone. I know it wont sound 'right' for the kinda music that you play but if your just starting out, then you will want to practice to make your playing 'flow' before you use high gain to smoothen out your playing for you. Micro cube is a great practice amp so learn to play before buying distortion pedals and higher output pickups.

He actually makes a good point. Most teachers/books/lessons or whatever recommend not learning with effects on because it (especially high gain) can cover up the nuances of your playing and hide some of your sloppiness/mistakes. i.e. hitting the wrong notes tend to be less noticeable.
#34
I love the way this guys talking bout dropping a bucker in SOMEONE ELSES guitar
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#35
I have to disagree that pups are overrated when it comes to affecting tone. But I think it's fair to say that it's in the ear of the beholder.
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#36
Quote by timi_hendrix
He has $200 to spend, he could take $30 and buy a GFS humbucker and have a guitar more suited to his style of music. There's no need for him to upgrade his amp at this point, something like a microcube will last him as a practice amp for at least another year. But he can stick a bridge humbucker in his guitar to make it more versatile and suited to the styles he wants to play.

I think he's being very sensible, to be honest, he could be on here asking about a new guitar altogether.


+1
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Quote by neverspoiled
thank you stevenpollock..
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=)
#37
Quote by stevenpollock
I have to disagree that pups are overrated when it comes to affecting tone. But I think it's fair to say that it's in the ear of the beholder.

I think that pickup swaps CAN make a difference, but they really only shine or make a very significant difference through a good amp. If you're just playing through a crapp amp (Not referring this instance of a Microcube..), breaking the bank on new pickups is a little silly. Likewise, a pickup swap isn't going to make a Fender Telecaster through a Fender HRD a fire breathing metal monster of a rig.

I do agree with timi_hendrix, dropping a humbucker into the Strat may help. And going through GFS would be a good way to fatten up your tone without spending too much.