#1
I've been playing for close to 6 years now. Just bought a new guitar, Ibanez S320 and I have an EHX metal muff pedal. My amp is the worst part but that shouldn't affect it much (Fender FM212R)

Basically, pinch harmonics NEVER work for me. I've tried every technique, using thumb, finger, everything.

I have tried letting my thumb lightly brush the string right after I pick the note and having my finger tap it directly after the pick on an upstroke.

I have tried every string, on every fret, on every position over the pickups, right down the bottom of the strings etc.

Tried on 2 different guitars, 3 different amps, 2 different pedals.

What on earth is the problem? The only way I can get a sound remotely close to a pinch harmonic is by doing a "harp harmonic".
I know it must be my technique but I can't seem to find out what I could be doing wrong!

Help !
#2
are you fretting with your left hand and not just muting? are you accidentally palm muting? is your distortion up high enough for it to sound? are you playing them are good frets for it? are you usuing high output pickups? thick strings? all these could affect it. but the way you said about letting your thumb brush the string immediatly after being plucked is the best...just keep looking for sweet spots around your pickups.
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Haggard13 i are impressed
#3
hey i have the metal muff and the FM210R, the smaller brother of your amp. i think those amps have wonderful clean, but not much heavy metal-wise. (hence the metal muff)

anyway, try all the above advice from Haggard13, but start doing that on the G string, and the D, as they are the easiest strings to get pinch harmonics from to start off with, in my opinion.
#4
Quote by Rokeman
hey i have the metal muff and the FM210R, the smaller brother of your amp. i think those amps have wonderful clean, but not much heavy metal-wise. (hence the metal muff)

anyway, try all the above advice from Haggard13, but start doing that on the G string, and the D, as they are the easiest strings to get pinch harmonics from to start off with, in my opinion.



yeah, when I started they seemed to be the best strings to do it, but now I find it harder to do it there and the easiest on the low E on about the 3rd fret....give that a try maybe.
Quote by bucktheduck

Call me troll, call me psychopath. In the end, I shall stand above you all as you drown in a pool of sex and filth. It will explode your corrupted bodies, and I will walk above the wreckage as a pure man.


Quote by DieGarbageMan

Haggard13 i are impressed
#5
I am using thicker strings in drop C tuning.
But I have tried with standard tuning and strings just as much.

I am making sure I do exactly what the guides say, pressing in the fret with my let hand, picking the string and immediately letting my finger brush over the string.

I am getting kind of a muffled note that sounds just like the normal note for that fret.
#6
k yeah drop C is very easy to get them....just make sure your quick with the thumb on the picking hand...its gotta be one smooth, fluent motion...cant be choppy or in 2 parts...just 1 smooth flow.
Quote by bucktheduck

Call me troll, call me psychopath. In the end, I shall stand above you all as you drown in a pool of sex and filth. It will explode your corrupted bodies, and I will walk above the wreckage as a pure man.


Quote by DieGarbageMan

Haggard13 i are impressed
#7
i find that sometimes if i pop the string by twisting my wrist and pulling up with my pick under the string, and lightly brushing the string with the outside of my hand at the same time i can pull them off.
#9
Quote by Guitarfreak777
Have someone show you how to do them, I had the same prob till a friend showed me.



I have an idea, when the guitar tech drops off the S320 in 2 days I'll have him show me. He said he'd help me set up my amp and Metal Muff so he'd probably help
#10
Don't think about hitting the string with your thumb. Think about picking the string harder. That's what I did because the thumb automatically comes through when you pick harder. Maybe it's just for me, but just practice.
#11
use only ur thumb..no pick

If u use ur nail to pluck the string your thumb automatically follows..

Use that to gauge how the pick should relate to ur thumb..

Crank up the gain and Dig in man....most people are afraid to dig in
like they are gonna scratch the guitar. dont treat it like its sacred.

ps: crank OD to insane levels...for practice that is..
I bet Charlie Brown's teacher's name was Mrs.Hammett
Last edited by Washburnd Fretz at Jul 19, 2008,
#12
my pick is usually held near at a 45 degree angle, with not alot of pick point showing, and the way i learned is by hitting the edge of the thumb against the string immediately after plucking, but it only works on certain areas of the string. try every half-centimeter up a string starting from your bridge pickup while fretting on the seventh fret with this technique, and note where harmonics sound.
#13
To play pinch harmonics it helps to understand what it is you're ultimately trying to do. It's not "hitting the string with you're thumb", that's just part of the mechanical process. Likewise you're not trying to "make a note squeal", that's just a consequence.

What you're trying to do is no different to playing a natural harmonic - you want to damp the string, which is vibrating as a standing wave , at a a harmonic node to cancel out the other overtones and be left with a single tone, ie a harmonic. Harmonic nodes appear at fixed intervals along the length of a vibrating string - the 2nd harmonic is at the centre of the string which is the 12th fret, and because it's bang in the centre there's only one.

All other harmonics are mirrored though, so any harmonic that can be played a certain distance from the nut can also be found the same distance from the bridge. For example, the 3rd harmonic appears 1/3rd of the way along the string at the 7th fret, but can also be found the same difference from the bridge, roughly somewhere around the 21st fret.

That's all well and good for open strings, but if you fret a string 2 things chane. The first thing that happens is the length of the vibrating string changes, and that means all the harmonic nodes move accordingly - they're sill in the same place relative to the length of the string though, so halfway, 1/3rd along, 1/4 along etc. The second thing is that you're using your left hand to fret a note so there's no way of also using it to fret a harmonic near the bridge. Therefore you have to pick and damp the note with your picking hand using one motion. You can actually do them slowly in two stages at first if it helps, just pick the note then lightly touch the string with your thumb the same way you'dplay a natural harmonic - if you're at the right place then you should get a harmonic, if not then move around a bit until you find a node
Actually called Mark!

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#14
Needless to say you need your gain quite high (mine needs to be on at least 4) for it to sound good.
#15
Seagull!

Quote by Vixus
Needless to say you need your gain quite high (mine needs to be on at least 4) for it to sound good


If you play it the right way, even a pinch harmonic can sound on clean.
#16
Quote by Th6r6a6sH
Seagull!


If you play it the right way, even a pinch harmonic can sound on clean.

Guess who was paying attention in GCSE physics.

I had too, our teacher was terrifying...

...and he has no idea I tried it on with his daughter a few years after leaving school
Actually called Mark!

Quote by TNfootballfan62
People with a duck for their avatar always give good advice.

...it's a seagull

Quote by Dave_Mc
i wanna see a clip of a recto buying some groceries.


stuffmycatswatchontv.tumblr.com
#17
Quote by steven seagull
Guess who was paying attention in GCSE physics.

I had too, our teacher was terrifying...

...and he has no idea I tried it on with his daughter a few years after leaving school

Props for paying attention. It pays off....
#18
Quote by Platinumcs
I am using thicker strings in drop C tuning.
But I have tried with standard tuning and strings just as much.

I am making sure I do exactly what the guides say, pressing in the fret with my let hand, picking the string and immediately letting my finger brush over the string.

I am getting kind of a muffled note that sounds just like the normal note for that fret.


it sounds like youre doing the thumb thing wrong (unless im just not understanding your explanation). you let your thumb go over the tip of the pick just very slightly then hit the note. dont hit the note then tap the string lightly with your finger. and again also try different places over the pickups as you do this.
#19
Quote by BullonParade
it sounds like youre doing the thumb thing wrong (unless im just not understanding your explanation). you let your thumb go over the tip of the pick just very slightly then hit the note. dont hit the note then tap the string lightly with your finger. and again also try different places over the pickups as you do this.



No, my thumb is hitting the string in the same motion as the pick.

I do it in one fluid motion but my I just get the same sound just a bit more muffled
#20
I actually learned to do them on bass using my palm. Basically, the same way you'd palm mute, just barely touch the string. I only do it the "traditional" way on the higher strings, and that was only after I randomly did it on accident.