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Thread: ALL things regarding GUITAR, PICKUP, STRINGS

  1. #1

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    The Guitar 101 Thread (2010 Edition)

    Hi all, especially for starters. This will be a thread to talk about buying guitar for those with a limited budget and some general explainations on the electric guitar. I'm no expert, so kindly take everything with a pinch of salt. I will update this thread as much as I can. So PM me anything you think we could add here.

    Headstock - A normal electric guitar will hold 6 tuner pegs either 6 in a line (seen on a Strat or Tele style guitar) or 3 + 3 (3 tuners on each side, like what you'll see on a Les Paul or SG or PRS). There are other variants, such as (4 + 2 on a Musicman guitar).

    Tuning Machines - Also known as tuning head, they are basically gears that help to bring your individual strings to accurate pitch. Tighten the tuner will raise the pitch, loosening will lower the pitch. Popular gear ratios are 12:1, 14:1, 16:1, 18:1 and 20:1 though more precise models are also available. There also locking models that will lock the strings prevent it from slipping and hence going out of tune. These are very effective for fixed bridge guitars. Popular brands include Sperzels, Grovers, Schallers, Gotoh.

    Nut - The nut is located at the top of the fretboard. For a 6 string guitar, it will have 6 groove to sit the strings and allow the individual strings to pass through from the bridge to the tuning peg. Nut can be composed of the following materials, bone, plastic, ebony, graphite (TUSQ) or metal alloy. The different materials will result in a difference in tone, such as an increase or decrease in bass and/or mid and/or treble.

    Neck - Usually comes in 2 wood, maple or mahoghany. There are other varieties such as rosewood. The wood used will define the tone of the guitar. How the neck is joined to the body will decide the tonal outcome as well. There are 2 ways of joining a neck to the body. Set-neck or bolt on. Les Pauls, SGs are generally, set necks, meaning the necks are glues to the body. Strats, Teles and Superstrats (Ibanez RGs, Jackson Dinkys/DKs and the likes) are most often bolt on where the neck is bolted to the body with 3 or 4 bolts. Set neck guitars tend to have slightly more sustain than bolt on. Also when we refer to neck we generally do not refer to the fretboard.

    Fingerboard - Often the fingerboard is referred to as the fretboard. They are normally made of either ebony, maple or rosewood. Ebony is very hard, smooth and fast feeling while having a bright, long sustaining tone. The wood does not lose moisture (dry up) easily and generally low on maintainence. Maple is dense hard and strong offering great sustain and stability while maintaining a bright tone. Rosewood is a hard and dense wood, has great clarity and individual note is articulated in tone. Smooth feeling but tends to lose moisture if not properly maintained.

    Frets - Metal wires (Fret wires) that are place in the neck. Usually are hammered in with a piece of wooden block and chisel by a skilled luthier. Normal guitars will have 21, 22 or 24 frets. Materials of fretwires are usually nickel or stainless steel.

    Pickups - Pickups are essentially microphones used to pickup the vibrations of the individual strings. There are two types of pickups - Single coils and humbuckers (Double coils). Pickups are responsible for picking up the vibrations of individual guitar strings and transmit to the amplifier which will amplify and shape your tone at the same time. Humbuckers has two single coils which serve to cancel the "hum" of the individual coils. A cover is sometimes placed on top of the pickups to reduce dirt and dust, but will also alter your tone. The perceived output of individual strings can be determined by adjusting the pole piece of the pickup.

    Bridge - Often described as the most the saddles are small grooves where the individual strings sit. There are numerous bridge designs. Tune-O-Matic (TOM), hardtail, wrapover, Floyd Rose, Tremolo. I will update this part at a later date as it is essentially a topic on itself.

    Body - Got your attention?? The shape determines how much attention you guys are going to get from the girls. :smt003 The two most popular shape is the Les Paul shape and the Strat style shape (Pic above). There are of course immensely popular alternatives such as the Doublecut, SG, PRS style, Superstrat (RGs/Soloist), and of course not forgetting the Telecaster. Generally, wood used on the body are either alder, ash, mahoghany. Other less common wood would be basswood, swamp ash, koa, walnut etc. Maple is often used as the top of the guitar for visually striking figuring while bringing some good high end to the guitar. Maple veneers do not add any tonal benefits to a guitar however, unlike a good maple cap.

    Pickguard - Serves to protect the guitar from wood or finish damage in an area where strumming or intense picking tends to take action.

    Volume Control - 0 for total silence. 10 for total mayhem on your neighbours. Adjust your amp's volume as well so you don't go deaf.

    Tone Control - Lowering it will taper/lower the treble giving a more mellow tone. A very good way to decrease your treble on a very bright amplifier.

    Toggle Switch - Selects the pickup or pickups combination to be activated. Eg: On a 3 way toggle, flipping towards you will select the neck pickup. In the middle, both the neck and bridge pickup will be activated. Flip away from you and you'd have activated the bridge pickup.

    Output Jack - Finally, to 'plug' the guitar in to an amplifier some sort of Output Jack is used. By using a regular 1/4" male end plug on both ends of a three-wire cable, you can plug in to any compatible audio output, such as an amplifier or a mixing board.
    Last edited by Lifehouse; 25-07-10 at 02:17 AM.

  2. #2

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    "Normal guitars will have 21, 23 or 24 frets. Materials of fretwires are usually nickel or stainless steel." heh surely u meant 22 frets :P

  3. #3

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    here's a pic, might help a lil too

  4. #4

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    Neck Joint Construction

    Bolt-on neck - Body and neck joined using bolts

    Set neck - Body and neck joined using glue, with neck extending a lil into the body(that lil bit of extension into the body is called a tennon)
    *In the case of a set-thru guitar, the tennon extends till the end of the body,

    Neck-thru-body - Neck extends till the end of the the guitar's body, with 'wings' glued on the sides.

  5. #5

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    Guitars Pricing in a Glance

    Extracted from reviews here and forum threads. All prices are estimated retail price (non discount and very likely might contain errors) and does not include GST or any other services taxes or any currency inflation and deflation. Please do not discuss about the cheapest price in this thread. Do it in your PMs. Last but not least, please do not compare the price with overseas price in here.

    Many of the guitars stated below has a review in the review section. Many thanks to our forumites for doing the reviews (esp. Mr Subversion).

    (Les Paul Style and Singlecut)
    Burny RLG 45 - $900
    Epiphone Bob Marley - $600
    Tokai ALC-45 - $850
    Tokai Love Rock LS75Q - $1,400
    Yamaha AES 420 - Unknown
    Yamaha AES 520 - Unknown
    Yamaha AES 620 - Unknown
    Yamaha AES 720 - Unknown
    Yamaha AES 920 - Unknown

    (Strat Style)
    Fender Aerodyne Strat - $1,240
    Fender Highway1 Stratocaster - $1,450
    Squier 51 - $400
    Squier Deluxe Strat QMT - $550
    SX GG1K (Bundle with amp and accessories) - $235
    SX SST62 - $195
    Yamaha RGX-520FZ - $730
    Yamaha RGX A2 - $790

    (SG Style and Doublecut)
    ESP LTD Viper 50 - $550
    Ibanez AR300 - $1,020
    Gibson SG Special (Faded edition) - $1,450
    Gibson SG 61' Reissue - $2,600

    (Tele Style)
    Fender Aerodyne Telecaster - $1,240
    Fender John5 Telecaster - $2,100

    (Super Strat Style)
    Brian Moore i81 - $800
    Cort M-200 - $400
    ESP LTD F2005 - $1,350
    ESP LTD M-50 - $460
    Ibanez SZ320 - $900
    Ibanez SZ2020 - $2,000
    Ibanez RG321MHWB - $680
    Ibanez RG321MH - $600
    Ibanez RG350 - $860
    Ibanez RG350DX - $850
    Ibanez RG370 - $860
    Ibanez RG450MH - $1,250
    Ibanez JEM Jr - $900
    Ibanez GSZ120 - $470
    Ibanez S520EX - $1,800
    Ibanez Mike Mushok Signature MMM1 - $1,700
    Music Man Sub1 - $950
    OLP Luke - $600
    Schecter 006 Elite - $980

    BC Rich NJ Mockingbird - $900
    Ibanez Iceman IC400 - $1,250
    Schecter Ultra - $850
    OLP MM1 - $395

    Epiphone Dot - $700
    Ibanez Artcore AF85VLS - $800

    (7 Strings)
    Ibanez RG7321 - $950

  6. #6

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    The STRING question

    So far these are the better strings (tonal and quality taken into consideration) available in Singapore. Please PM me on other brands available locally that I've missed out.

    Electric Strings
    Dean Markley
    Ernie Ball
    John Pearse
    Paul Reed Smith

    Acoustic Strings
    John Pearse

    More information regarding gauges will be added, however, there will be no string reviews as everyone exprience with strings are different.

  7. #7

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    Some guitar shape/models to suggest for the below genres (nothing too ex)

    Metal (Include Instrumental Rock)

    and other genres which I have missed out. Generalisation will be good. PM me if possible. Thanks!

  8. #8

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    if you guys don't mind, i'll add this to the list of stickies on the sub-section...

  9. #9

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    Re: Anatomy and Buying Guide for Electric Guitar and Pickups

    Quote Originally Posted by Lifehouse
    Strats, Teles and Superstrats (Ibanez RGs, Jackson Soloist and the likes) are most often bolt on where the neck is bolted to the body with 3 or 4 bolts.
    Soloist are neck-thru body tho, their bolt on counterparts are Dinkys or DK's

  10. #10

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    Editted and updated.

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