#1
Got an Ibanez RG1570, with Breed in the neck and a D-Activator in the bridge, but I don't seem to have much sustain especially when bending (tried different techniques, and it is held firmly) or just high notes in general.

I lowered the middle single-coil pickup as much as possible to reduce it's magnetic pull on the strings (I barely use it anyway so the lack of volume here doesn't matter) but that hasn't help tremendously, but it has increased sustain of lower notes and chords.

Does the amp have a major effect on sustain or not? It's a Spider II 210. No need to start slating the amp, all I need to know is if it's going to be a major contributing factor.
#2
The biggest sustain-sucker on that guitar is the floating tremolo. Less contact ("coupling") between the strings and body = less sustain. You can only increase sustain with a load of volume, a decent amount of gain, and maybe some effects to help (overdrive, compression etc).
#3
Quote by StiltonCheese
It's a Spider II 210.

There's your problem. spiders can't help your sustain, damn near period. I'd replace the amp with a decent tube amp.
EDIT: Yeah, the floating trem will have something to do with it.
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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.
#4
My friend has a Dave Mustane Signature Dean V (he got it for under $500 canadian) and its got **** sustain played through his line 6 spider III amp.

Complete garbage.
#5
Quote by HoldYourColour
My friend has a Dave Mustane Signature Dean V (he got it for under $500 canadian) and its got **** sustain played through his line 6 spider III amp.

Complete garbage.


Is this the VMNT1 or the VMNTX?
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#6
Yeah, obviously floating trem's going to reduce the sustain, but there's essentially none. I mean, Kirk Hammett uses floating trem's and has plenty of sustain, so i figured that wouldn't be a major factor in killing the sustain so short.

Is it more likely to be the amp then, or a combination of that and the trem?

There's no way in hell I'm getting rid of the guitar though, love it to bits, even if it is the trem that's killing the sustain
#7
the set up of your guitar of course. the lower your action is, the less sustain you will have. your technique is also extremely important.
#8
Quote by StiltonCheese
Yeah, obviously floating trem's going to reduce the sustain, but there's essentially none. I mean, Kirk Hammett uses floating trem's and has plenty of sustain, so i figured that wouldn't be a major factor in killing the sustain so short.

Is it more likely to be the amp then, or a combination of that and the trem?

There's no way in hell I'm getting rid of the guitar though, love it to bits, even if it is the trem that's killing the sustain

Kirk Hammett plays through several stacks at high volume with half a ton of gain on it. A Squier Strat could sustain for a year with that kind of help.
#9
A heavy LP custom with at least 10 gauge strings and a thick over driven high quality amp with give it.


BTW I tried a Boss Blues driver at a store recently using a Mexican strat and the sustain singed with it,but when I got home with it on my rig it didn't sound good at all tone wise,I took it back.


Via and Satriani have massive sustain,how they do it I dunno unless it is just loud overdriven amps.

O and vibrato technique helps too and there are certain sweet spots depending where you sustain your note that will carry better than others,the G string usually sustains best for me solo wise
Last edited by LK_revival at Jul 19, 2008,
#11
my jackson has a floyd and also has amazing sustain, but ive found that sticking 5 trem springs in there really helped with increasing sustain
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#12
i find it's all in the amp/pedal combination. a decent distortion pedal whacked all the way up gives good sustain.
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#14
If the guitar's incorrectly setup then that'll affect things - as far as the amp goes that's a lost cause, there's nothing you can do with external effects to improve matters on a Spider.
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#15
Quote by steven seagull
If the guitar's incorrectly setup then that'll affect things - as far as the amp goes that's a lost cause, there's nothing you can do with external effects to improve matters on a Spider.

I already mentioned this, but anyway.
Current Gear:
LTD MH-400 with Gotoh GE1996T (EMG 85/60)
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Peavey Revalver 4, UAD Friedman BE100/DS40
Adam S3A monitors
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.
#16
Quote by Ed Hunter
Is this the VMNT1 or the VMNTX?



He's got the VMNTX, why? Is it like, a dumbbed down version of the VMNT1?
#17
sustain is a matter of a thing called inertia. inertia is (to put very simply) an objects resistance to a change in motion, i.e. once it starts to vibrate, the greater the inertia, the harder it is to stop it from vibrating. In order to increase inertia, you can increase overall mass. you can clip (i beleive there is even a aftermarker accessorie) a large metal peice to the end of the headstock. maybe even fill any cavities with heavy wood.
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#18
Quote by chea_man
sustain is a matter of a thing called inertia. inertia is (to put very simply) an objects resistance to a change in motion, i.e. once it starts to vibrate, the greater the inertia, the harder it is to stop it from vibrating. In order to increase inertia, you can increase overall mass. you can clip (i beleive there is even a aftermarker accessorie) a large metal peice to the end of the headstock. maybe even fill any cavities with heavy wood.

Not so much with an electric guitar - the effect of your amplification is far more important and can pretty much compensate for any physical deficiences.

A tube amp, lots of volume and the ability to control feedback is all you need.
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#19
Quote by steven seagull
A tube amp, lots of volume, the ability to control feedback and good vibrato technique is all you need.


Fixed. Bad Vibrato technique will kill sustain faster than a spider will...
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#20
Try a fat head. I think that's what they're called. It's basically like a capo. You attach it to the head of the guitar, which gives it weight, which in turn helps out the sustain. It's like twenty bucks.
#21
Maximum sustain is gained with:

- A large body made of high-density wood. Hard Maple and Mahogany tend to be the best. Rosewood has the best sustain but it's tonal properties aren't so great for making a whole body with, so that's not much of an option. Ideally you want the body to be one solid lump. Most bodies however are two pieces sandwiched together, and many guitars these days are chambered (not solid).

- A thick neck made of high-density wood, joined to the body via the usual bolt-on method. In testing, bolt-on guitars, when it is a well-made tight fit, provide more sustain than set-necks or neck-throughs (mostly because with set necks the glue stops there being so much wood contact, and in neck-throughs you have to take wood out the body to get the neck in, which defeats the point). A thick neck is better because simple more mass = more sustain. Again, Hard Maple or Mahogany is the best wood for the back of the neck, and it is best to either have a Rosewood fretboard if you're using a Mahogany neck or if you're using Hard Maple, use the neck's own wood as the fretboard (so it's all one piece).

- Low pickups. Less magnetic pull, more sustain. You'll also get a clearer and more defined tone from lowering the pickups too, which is always nice. Consider switching your pickups for lower output versions too (it's rare these days for anyone to need high output pickups anyway since most people get their overdrive and distortion from their pedals or the amp rather than from the guitar), or if you don't use a pickup much at all, consider removing it entirely.

- A simple bridge. The best bridge for sustain is the Wraparound as found on some PRS guitars and one most Les Paul Junior models. Second best to this is a Tone-O-Matic and Stopbar combinations, then Tune-O-Matic and String-Through, then the one-piece String-Through bridges that many Ibanez guitars have, then a Telecaster style bridge, then finally the usual tremolo units (with floating trems being the worst).

- A large, angled headstock. Those slim pointy things so many super-Strat style guitars have aren't very good for sustain (nor tuning stability).

- Traditional tuners. Locking or lock-and-cut tuners aren't as good for sustain. You want to have the string wrapped around several times.

- A solid nut. LSR roller nuts and the like can kill sustain. Locking nuts (for floating trems) can kill sustain too just as badly. Bone tends to be the best nut for sustain.

- Simple controls, and a short direct line to your amp. Every single fraction of a millimetre that the signal has to pass through, it's losing some power. If you've got eight controls on your guitar, then seven pedals, then two miles of cable before your amp, then that's going to severely affect both the signal clarity and it's sustain. The ideal set-up for pure sustain would be no controls on the guitar, and a short cable (2metres or less) straight to the amp. Of course that's not very practical, but you get the idea for this; less is more.

- Thicker picks, and dig your pick in. Angus Young used to get fantastic sustain out of buggered up SGs (slimmer bodies with high-output pickups raised right to the strings), mostly because he really dug his picks in hard. The harder you're picking, the longer the strings are going to vibrate. That's easy enough to understand, isn't it.

- Medium strings at slightly below average tension. .10 or .11 strings tuned down a half step tend to give the best sustain. .09 strings are better if you're tuning any strings up (such as for open tunings). The theory that thicker strings help sustain is completely wrong. Though .11s tuned down half a step will give long sustain, .12s tuned down a whole step will actually give shorter sustain. Heavy strings with very low drop-tunings tend to provide little sustain at all. The key is getting the tension right.

- Higher action. Not just to get the strings further from the pickup's magnetic pull, but also from the fretboard itself. The steeper the angle is of the string coming off the fretboard, the more sustain you'll have.

- A thick finish. Those thick plastic-based poly finishes that brands like Squier and Epiphone use may be frowned upon by many people, but they'll actually help sustain more than the 'preferred' thin nitro finishes on more expensive guitars.

- In case you can't tell by now, you basically need to get your guitar as close to an old Gibson Les Paul Junior as possible. Juniors have always had the most insanely long sustain you wouldn't believe. If in doubt, keep it simple, and go in the opposite direction of the typical 'heavy metal guitar'. High-output pickups raised high with thick strings tuned down to B or whatever with a bunch of delay and distortion pedals, thin picks and floyd rose bridges, is exactly what you should be avoiding if you want good sustain.

- Tube amp with a large speaker, lots of volume but don't truly max it out. As few extra channels and digital effects and whatever as possible.
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#22
Once again you miss out good vibrato MrFlibble; good vibrato can add years to your sustain.
R.I.P. My Signature. Lost to us in the great Signature Massacre of 2014.

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#23
I've said it before and I'll say it again.

Fernandes Sustainer kit.
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#24
Quote by SupremeACL
I've said it before and I'll say it again.

Fernandes Sustainer kit.

nice.
Current Gear:
LTD MH-400 with Gotoh GE1996T (EMG 85/60)
PRS SE Custom 24 (Suhr SSH+/SSV)
Ibanez RG3120 Prestige (Dimarzio Titans)
Squier Vintage Modified 70s Jazz V
Audient iD22 interface
Peavey Revalver 4, UAD Friedman BE100/DS40
Adam S3A monitors
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.
#25
Do make greater sustain you could start and the pickups to see if their old or see how well its made if it looks like crap but oyu could use:1.sustain pedal,new pickups or a better amp.Hope I could help anyone One more thing change your tone control or setting on guitar or change pickups.
Andrew Mosco (Guitarist/bassist) Guitar is the Sh*t
Message me at andrew.mosco@hotmail.com if you got any concerns or anything about music questions
#26
Do make greater sustain you could start and the pickups to see if their old or see how well its made if it looks like crap but oyu could use:1.sustain pedal,new pickups or a better amp.Hope I could help anyone One more thing change your tone control or setting on guitar or change pickups eg. bridge to other pickup using rythm/treble switch.
Andrew Mosco (Guitarist/bassist) Guitar is the Sh*t
Message me at andrew.mosco@hotmail.com if you got any concerns or anything about music questions
#27
Quote by Zaphod_Beeblebr
good vibrato can add years to your sustain.


This is so true.

Has anyone seen the Buckethead video where he just strikes the one note and virbratos it while he grabs some things from off screen with he picking hand?

And if memory serves, he uses a custom, bigger LP which might be a baritone as well. Of course, my memory isn't what it used to be

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