How to make an amp sound dark? - Jemsite
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post #1 of 24 (permalink) Old 07-21-2012, 02:46 AM Thread Starter
 
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How to make an amp sound dark?

Hello guys!

Now first, I'd like to say that I'm not talking about my amp specifically. I'm talking about ANY amp.

Now, on to the question. How do you make it sound dark? And not just be adding bass. Because that doesn't make it darker. It just makes it bassier. The only way I've ever selt that helped the darkness was upping the resonance/depth and lowering the treble.

Anything else?

Thanks as always guys!!
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post #2 of 24 (permalink) Old 07-21-2012, 02:52 AM
 
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Re: How to make an amp sound dark?

just lower the treble
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post #3 of 24 (permalink) Old 07-21-2012, 03:20 AM
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Re: How to make an amp sound dark?

You need to make it makes a pact.
Call wacko hating pyramids, he can help you
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post #4 of 24 (permalink) Old 07-21-2012, 04:37 AM
 
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Re: How to make an amp sound dark?

Turn the lights out????
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post #5 of 24 (permalink) Old 07-21-2012, 05:16 AM
 
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Re: How to make an amp sound dark?

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Originally Posted by LonePhantom View Post
Turn the lights out????
That had to be said..........

You could really try putting it in a cupboard. It might sound a bit boxy though.

-Wolfram
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post #6 of 24 (permalink) Old 07-21-2012, 05:32 AM
 
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Re: How to make an amp sound dark?

Never tried without mic. but maybe some cloth in from of speaker could work...
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post #7 of 24 (permalink) Old 07-21-2012, 10:16 AM
 
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Re: How to make an amp sound dark?

Put the bass around 1 o'clock, scoop the mids and then lower the treble as low as you can and still have clarity. That should be a good start with most amps.

Rock on!
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post #8 of 24 (permalink) Old 07-21-2012, 02:24 PM
 
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Re: How to make an amp sound dark?

Quote:
Originally Posted by D.M.RG7620 View Post
Hello guys!

Now first, I'd like to say that I'm not talking about my amp specifically. I'm talking about ANY amp.

Now, on to the question. How do you make it sound dark? And not just be adding bass. Because that doesn't make it darker. It just makes it bassier. The only way I've ever selt that helped the darkness was upping the resonance/depth and lowering the treble.

Anything else?

Thanks as always guys!!


If you follow the advice of people here in this forum, trust me, you are gonna get that kind tone... hehehehehe

If you follow the advice of dudes that say the celestion 70/80 sound good, well, follow what those people say and you are gonna get that kind of crappy tone hehhehe

You can hear a lot of newbie guys talking crap here and you know they know nothing about tone the first time they talk.
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post #9 of 24 (permalink) Old 07-21-2012, 04:10 PM
 
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Re: How to make an amp sound dark?

Personally, and this may be just me, but I find the guitar being played has a greater influence on the light/dark tone than the amp. Sure, you can play with the amp's eq, resonance, presence, etc... But ultimately an amp is just that - it AMPLIFIES what is being fed into it. If I want a "darker tone", I play a darker sounding guitar. Tone woods such as mahogany are very well known for their "darker" tonal characteristics. Pickups are also very well known for adding/enhancing tonal "coloration".

And frankly, I think that's how it should be. Do you really wanna be constantly running over to your amp and tweaking settings between songs to find the right coloration? As oposed to just geabbing another guitar? In the studio that might be ok, but live? There's a reason many guitarists (myself included) own multiple guitars that goes way beyond collecting. Each one has it's own unique character, color, and tone. Choose the AXE that generates the tone you are seeking, and let the amp do its job - amplify.

Obviously I do realize different amps have different tones and can dramatically effect a guitarist's overall tone. But to address the OP, no I don't think it makes sense to look for some sort of magically universal "dark" settings for an amp. I've owned and played an awful lot of amps in my days, and I don't remember a single one of them having a "darkness" knob...
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post #10 of 24 (permalink) Old 07-21-2012, 09:53 PM Thread Starter
 
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Re: How to make an amp sound dark?

Well, my guitar is pretty dark in general and so are the pickups. My amps tone is pretty dark as well.

Like I said, I'm not talking about my rig personally. But I do plan on getting a different head in the future so I'd like to know what causes a darker tone. Because I like dark, heavy and tight (but not djenty).
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post #11 of 24 (permalink) Old 07-21-2012, 10:13 PM
 
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Re: How to make an amp sound dark?

Quote:
Originally Posted by D.M.RG7620 View Post
Well, my guitar is pretty dark in general and so are the pickups. My amps tone is pretty dark as well.

Like I said, I'm not talking about my rig personally. But I do plan on getting a different head in the future so I'd like to know what causes a darker tone. Because I like dark, heavy and tight (but not djenty).
Well looking for a tight, non-muddy distortion is not necessarily the same as "darkness" to most... This is exactly the problem with questions on tone - you are trying to describe a sound with words - the word you are using is "dark", but we all likely have different interpretations of what a "dark" tone is. Or at least variations in interpretation.

Short answer - get a good EQ. The built in EQ's in most amps are rudimentary. If you really want to specifically customize your amp's tonal "color" you will prob want more control than the standard Bass, Mid, Treble controls most amps incorporate. Also, a good EQ pedal (or multi-fx unit with programmable EQ) will allow you to program in several tonal "colors" you can easily switch between as you like. You'd be surprised what some thoughtful EQ tweaking can do for the tone of an amp!

Suggestion. To get more specific advice, suggest a song that has a guitar tone you like and want to shoot for. Do a little research into the gear used and recording method for the track. That will give you a good starting point and you can then ask very specific questions about specific pieces of equipment.

Not trying to be a jerk btw, just trying to extract the specifics needed to give you real, legit advice and/or experience rather than random recommendations that may or may not actually apply to you.
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post #12 of 24 (permalink) Old 07-21-2012, 10:18 PM
 
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Re: How to make an amp sound dark?

I agree, audio example please!

I've always thought amps by themselves sound "dark" with the mids cut and the bass and treble maxed, but it's more of a fuzzy sabbath sound to me, which probably is nothing like what you want.
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post #13 of 24 (permalink) Old 07-22-2012, 06:16 AM
 
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Re: How to make an amp sound dark?

Quote:
Originally Posted by kfssdude View Post
Personally, and this may be just me, but I find the guitar being played has a greater influence on the light/dark tone than the amp. Sure, you can play with the amp's eq, resonance, presence, etc... But ultimately an amp is just that - it AMPLIFIES what is being fed into it.
I have to say I completely disagree with this. The guitar has a bigger part in a tonal quality if you're running your amp (mostly) clean, but by far an amp has a much bigger effect on your sound than your guitar has.

Sure, if you play a Les Paul and a strat into the same amp on the same settings you'll get a different sound, but you won't get a br00tuhl tone out of an H-H guitar through a Blues Jr - you'll get much closer with an H-H guitar through a Peavey 6505, for example.

I would look at changing speakers to get a darker tone. Something like Vintage 30's would be a good place to start. What amp are you using?
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post #14 of 24 (permalink) Old 07-22-2012, 12:56 PM
 
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Re: How to make an amp sound dark?

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Originally Posted by Bidley View Post
I have to say I completely disagree with this. The guitar has a bigger part in a tonal quality if you're running your amp (mostly) clean, but by far an amp has a much bigger effect on your sound than your guitar has.

Sure, if you play a Les Paul and a strat into the same amp on the same settings you'll get a different sound, but you won't get a br00tuhl tone out of an H-H guitar through a Blues Jr - you'll get much closer with an H-H guitar through a Peavey 6505, for example.

I would look at changing speakers to get a darker tone. Something like Vintage 30's would be a good place to start. What amp are you using?
I get what you're saying, but comparing a Blues Jr to a 6505 is more a comparison of gain structure and character than tonal coloration. I play through an original 1st gen 5150, which is what the 6505 was modeled after, and a Mesa Road King II, and I can def make either sound "brutal" or clean or anything in between... But they take on decidedly different tonal characteristics depending on what guitar I'm using, what pickup im using on any givwn guitar, etc. Thus my statement that the guitar ultimately defines the subtle tonal coloration of the overall tone which <I> call "light and dark".

I will agree that choice of speaker cab can make a big tonal difference also. My main gigging cabs are original Sheffield equipped 5150 cabs or my V30 equipped Mesa cabs. Both sound great but they def sound different. I guess you could call the 5150 cabs a little "brighter", or the Mesa cabs a little "chunkier", but does that equate to "darkeness"? Totally subjective... But again, there are differences that go beyond just the speakers because i also have V30 equipped Marshall and Carvin cabs, and they both sound noticeably different than my Mesa cabs, even though all have V30's.

Again, I feel part of the issue here is trying to describe tone, and audio quality, with words - and written words at that. I really think coming up with specific audio samples of what one has and what one wants is the only way to get everyone involved in the conversation on the same page.
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post #15 of 24 (permalink) Old 07-22-2012, 01:19 PM
 
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Re: How to make an amp sound dark?

Quote:
Originally Posted by kfssdude View Post
I get what you're saying, but comparing a Blues Jr to a 6505 is more a comparison of gain structure and character than tonal coloration. I play through an original 1st gen 5150, which is what the 6505 was modeled after, and a Mesa Road King II, and I can def make either sound "brutal" or clean or anything in between... But they take on decidedly different tonal characteristics depending on what guitar I'm using, what pickup im using on any givwn guitar, etc. Thus my statement that the guitar ultimately defines the subtle tonal coloration of the overall tone which <I> call "light and dark".
Yeah, I hear you. I was just making the point that your amp, by and large, has the biggest effect on your sound. You can make a bad guitar sound ok with a great amp, but not vice-versa.

And yeah, the whole "light and dark" thing is very subjective. Words don't often cut it, one man's "warm" is another man's "muddy", etc. I think the speakers are a good place to start though, it sounds like a little change in the voicing is what's required.
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