By Joyce Mcalister. Guitar Electric. Published at Friday, August 31st, 2018 - 05:38:31 AM.
Another cheap and easy mod is to shield the control cavity. This helps eliminate noise and interference and is especially useful for dampening the inherent 60 cycle hum of single coils. There are a few ways to do this, such as copper shielding tape or conductive shielding paint. While not necessarily a tone upgrade, the shielding will eliminate a lot of noise if done properly, but is necessary for a single-coil equipped guitar used in conjunction with a lot of overdrive or distortion in the studio.
As mentioned earlier, the cable going from your floor pedals to your amp can be about 10 to 15 feet. A really good brand for this cable is Mogami. You can use Mogami for your guitar cable as well. Another good brand is Monster Cable. The cables that connect your effects loop box can probably be about 3 feet each, and you can simply put the effects rack unit on top of your amp head. You may be lucky to have a floor pedal extension box. Try to see if this floor box passes signal, or if it is merely a controller to send instructions to the master box. If it's a controller, that's good news. In this case you can have a long cable run from the controller to the effects rack unit, and it won't degrade your actual guitar signal. It's only sending instructions to change program numbers, turn effects on and off, etc.
Electric Guitar Tone: Speakers. There are basically three types of vintage speakers: Jensen speakers, JBL and Electrovoice drivers, and Celestion speakers. Jensen Speakers, alnico Jensen speakers came standard in Fender tweed amplifiers in the 50's, including the famous Tweed Bassman, which had four (4) Jensen P10R speakers (Jensen labeled alnico speakers with a "P" and ceramic speakers with a "C"; the "10" refers to the speaker size (10") and "R" means the speaker is low powered, while "N" would refer to a higher powered speaker). Ceramic Jensen speakers are sometimes associated with the later Fender tolex years, but the alnico speakers were included in those amps too. If you have ever heard anyone talk of an "American" sounding speaker, it's probably the tone of Fender (i.e. the tone of Jensen speakers in an amp powered by 6l6 or 6v6 tubes) that they are referring to. Jensens are generally bright sounding speakers (they have smaller voice coils and resonance frequencies around 100 Hz), and they have a very clear tone with great sensitivity. As a result, they work especially well with single coil pickups, like those found in a Fender Stratocaster. The original Jensen speakers were made in the United States, but the current re-issues that Fender is putting in its vintage reissue amplifiers now are made in Italy. Excellent Jensen clones are also made by Weber and Eminence. The Webers are called the "Vintage Series" and the Eminence speakers include the 10" alnico Legend 102, as well as the higher powered "Patriot Series" speakers. To my ear, the Italian reissues sound good at low volume, but the Webers sound better at full volume, and they handle overdrive better as well.
What Could Possibly Go Wrong? The unsuspecting guitar. Well, a lot, actually. Single coil pickups hum, and humbuckers don’t. Even if you get a reverse woundreverse polarity single coil pickup for the middle position, there will be hum when the neck single coil is used alone, as well as when you use the middle single coil alone, and the middle single coil with the humbucker. That is three out of the five positions that have that annoying 60-cycle hum. While I can tolerate this in a Strat with three singles because the noise is always there, it’s hard for me to deal with it coming and going, especially with distortion.
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