By Clarissa Nadeau. Guitar Electric. Published at Friday, August 31st, 2018 - 13:17:21 PM.
The other primary factor in determining the tone of an electric guitar is the strings. Electric guitar strings are made of nickel and steel. The more nickel, the warmer the sound; the more steel, the brighter and louder the strings sound. Also, the thicker the strings the more volume they will produce. That's why some players like to use heavy strings; they have more tone. If you try them and find they are too hard to play, you can always tune down a half step or more to compensate.
The part of an electric guitar which detects this movement is called the pickup, which are basically magnets wrapped tightly round with very fine wire. As any electrician will tell you, a magnet wrapped round with coils of wire is an electric generator waiting to happen, and the vibrating movement of the string next to this mini generator is enough to create an electric current. This electric current is sent as a signal to the amplifier, and it is at this point that the tone, voice, sound, colour, and any distortion effects, are generated, and of course, the volume boosted.
6l6 Tubes. 6l6 power tubes not only have different size plates, they also come in different size bottles. There are basically three (3) types. The small bottle "stubbies" modeled after the original Tung Sol 5881, the tall bottles based on the original Sylvania 6l6GC STR, and the clear tops that have the side getter construction of the famous black plate RCA 6l6GC. The most common OEM 6l6 is the Sovtek 5881WXT, which is sort of an anomaly. The Sovtek is a short plate tube in a tall bottle. It's called a 5881 but it's really a 6l6. It can handle high voltages like the other 6l6's but it has the lower output of a 5881. And you will see it branded both ways. Sovtek calls it the 5881WXT but Groove Tubes sells it as a 6l6GC, Fender calls it a 6l6GC, and a Mesa Boogie sells it as a 6l6GC STR. Regardless of the name, the Sovtek is a very reliable, inexpensive tube, but it doesn't have the best tone.
Another thing to consider with single coils is how the construction will affect the way the pickup responds to electrical interference. You may love the way a big, fat single coil like a Gibson p90 sounds, but you may also find the extra wiring that makes the pickup sound so good makes it hum louder too. So there is a trade off if you like that sound (more wire louder, fatter sound = more hum).
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