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Vol/Vol/Tone/Tone - how do you use it?

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  • #16
    I have a Les Paul with this configuration. I use the knobs on all my guitars, but never do presets, as it were, and would be better suited by VT.

    On a Strat with a bright bridge pickup, I like having a dedicated tone knob to take the edge off it and leave the neck and middle open, though.
    "Patience is key. Hard work is obligatory. And itís the decisions you make right now, not the habits of the past, that will shape your success in the future." - Janek Gwizdala

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    • #17
      Originally posted by JB_From_Hell View Post
      I have a Les Paul with this configuration. I use the knobs on all my guitars, but never do presets, as it were, and would be better suited by VT.

      On a Strat with a bright bridge pickup, I like having a dedicated tone knob to take the edge off it and leave the neck and middle open, though.
      You can tie the middle tone pot to the bridge, and make that pot a master neck and bridge pot. It’s a very easy mod too.


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      • #18
        Originally posted by GuitarStv View Post
        It's for individual control of your pickups. I like it a lot on my 335 with PAF style pickups.

        My default for that guitar is the neck volume back a bit with tone on full, and the bridge volume on full and the tone back a bit. That sounds lovely . . . but sometimes I'll set it with the bridge volume back a tad and the neck way up in volume and tone for solos. I rarely want the same settings for both pickups . . . and then in the middle position there's a whole bunch of tone mixing that can go on with the two volumes.
        ^ This. And the solo boost thing is really nice. Flip a switch and you've got a boost without a pedal.

        I have Black Winters in my Les Paul, which obviously is V/V/T/T with coil-splitting. Those knobs get a ton of play. Given that the Winter neck is hot enough to sound louder than the bridge, I usually have the neck volume around 5 with tone at max. I keep the bridge around 7 volume and dime it for a solo boost, tone usually also dimed if I'm playing metal or hard rock. For rock and pop, bridge tone comes down a fair bit, especially if I'm on the coil split. And there 's a whole 'nother set of considerations if I'm playing out of the middle position with both pickups split.

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        • #19
          I like the middle position with both volumes lowered a bit, and the neck volume lowered a bit more. You can then raise either volume for a middle position sound that is fatter like the neck or cutting like the bridge but, still has a little of the other pickup mixed in.


          also yes leave the neck pickup off and turn the switch into a kill switch, I always thought this was useful af.


          ​​​​​​

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          • #20
            Long time LP / LP style player

            #1 Bridge V on 10, Neck V on 0 = Toggle kill switch. I usually do that
            - Also works in reverse for Sweet Child players...

            #2 Bridge V on 10, Neck V on 1.1 (or whatever is barely on) = Switch to middle to go from full bridge to very clean/cleanish sound. Again, faster/easier than volume turning fiddling.
            - Also works in reverse.

            #3 Middle position clean playing (usually). Blend each pickup until you get just the right amount of each. = Many shades of clean from rounder softer with bite, to Biting with rounder / softer edges, and anything in between.
            - Using my PAF/SuperD like this into an Acoustic simulator, I get some pretty cool acoustic tones. Just one example

            #4 If you want to balance unbalanced pickups...example: Distortion in the Bridge, A2P in the Neck. You run the volume and treble full up on the A2P. Take the Distortion and run the volume down, and roll off some treble on the tone. Find the sweet spot where the pair matches up well. Leave it like that. But - if you want to go full range, you just open up the bridge and the tone, or the tone, and there you go. That's a good way - moving the tone only, to add a lot of bite to an A2P if you want more from the neck than the neck provides.
            Originally posted by Bad City
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            • #21
              Originally posted by alex1fly View Post
              Hey everyone, I'd love to hear some ideas for how to get the most mileage out of a vol/vol/tone/tone setup like on an SG or Les Paul. When does having separate circuits come in handy for you?

              I've had my SG for about a year and a half now and find myself using it just like I would a Tele or other guitar with master volume/tone. Sure, I can see the utility, but nothing has ever wowed me to the point where I'm able to be more musical thanks to the separate volumes and tones.

              I'm messing with the SG pickups soon and am halfway tempted to throw in a crazy combination that wouldn't work in a master volume/tone guitar, like Norton bridge/JB neck, since in theory the separate circuits will allow me to wrangle them into submission while providing a broader tonal palette.

              Just some thoughts.
              Shortly I'll be wiring up one of my guitars with a less common control layout and will see how it how it works out for me. That being, a dual-gang pot that functions as follows: when the pot is turned in one direction, the neck pup volume is lowered while the bridge pup volume is raised, and when the pot is turned in the other direction, the bridge pickup volume will be lowered while the neck pup volume is raised. Each pup would be wired to this dual-gang pot in Independent fashion, so the infamous Les Paul middle position problem is avoided where fully turning down the volume for a single pup kills all output. The point of this control is so the player only has to manipulate a single pot to get various ratios of how much volume is output from the 2 pups, versus traditional control layouts wherr you have to manipulate two separate pots to do this.

              The outputs of this dual-gang pot will be routed to a Master Volume pot, so that is where the loading will occur for the 2 pups.

              So this dual-gang control completely replaces a 3 way toggle switch.

              I'll also have a push-pull switch that will let me bypass this dual-gang control when i want full volume out of both pups at the same time. An example of when i'd want that is when i coilsplit both pups to be either Both Inner Coils or Both Outer Coils.

              In this setup i also plan to use a Master Tone control instead of a tone control per pickup.

              This leaves a 4th pot free to use for whatever else you'd like. I plan to use it for a Neck Pickup Bass Cut control. But other options could be Master Bass Cut control, Mid Cut control, or use that pot hole for a switch, like for Out Of Phase or maybe a 4DPT switch to change the series/parallel mode of both pups at the same time. Lots of potential options.



              Sent from my SM-G960U using Tapatalk


              Last edited by Jack_TriPpEr; 09-15-2021, 01:23 PM.
              Sanford: "The hardest part about tone chasing is losing the expectations associated with the hardware."

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              • #22
                Originally posted by Aceman View Post
                Long time LP / LP style player

                #1 Bridge V on 10, Neck V on 0 = Toggle kill switch. I usually do that
                - Also works in reverse for Sweet Child players...

                #2 Bridge V on 10, Neck V on 1.1 (or whatever is barely on) = Switch to middle to go from full bridge to very clean/cleanish sound. Again, faster/easier than volume turning fiddling.
                - Also works in reverse.

                #3 Middle position clean playing (usually). Blend each pickup until you get just the right amount of each. = Many shades of clean from rounder softer with bite, to Biting with rounder / softer edges, and anything in between.
                - Using my PAF/SuperD like this into an Acoustic simulator, I get some pretty cool acoustic tones. Just one example

                #4 If you want to balance unbalanced pickups...example: Distortion in the Bridge, A2P in the Neck. You run the volume and treble full up on the A2P. Take the Distortion and run the volume down, and roll off some treble on the tone. Find the sweet spot where the pair matches up well. Leave it like that. But - if you want to go full range, you just open up the bridge and the tone, or the tone, and there you go. That's a good way - moving the tone only, to add a lot of bite to an A2P if you want more from the neck than the neck provides.
                This. I do all of this with my Les Paul. In addition, when I split the neck pickup, I roll the volume back a little bit and can go from really sweet Strat-like sound to raging Les Paul in your face by flipping the switch to the bridge with the volume up full.

                I disconnected the neck tone pot. It opened up the neck pickup a little bit. Like turning up the presence knob on the amp.

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                • #23
                  Originally posted by devastone View Post
                  Turn the volume all the way down on the neck volume then whack the switch back and for to get that kill switch kinda thing, it was the rage in the 70s/early 80s, Randy did it, you should too.

                  j/k, I don't currently have any 4 knobbers, I do have a V/V/T on a Schecter Solo though, but yeah, that trick is old.
                  Ha! I still do that. Lol

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                  • #24
                    I'm pretty conventional and stay mostly on the bridge pickup, rolling back for cleans (core tone is crunch; lead channel for solos).
                    I do sometimes use middle position with the neck on around 7 for fuller rhythm tones.
                    And occasionally neck pickup by itself, rolled back for warm rhythm work or full up for a lead.
                    .
                    "Brains have been washed. Fear has been mongered. Now we prepare for the final stage of our conspiracy theory." - Isle Of Dogs

                    .

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                    • #25
                      Bridge on full for crunch, neck rolled back for cleans. I call it my hillbilly channel switcher.

                      I don’t really have set positions, just fiddle with them to get the sounds I need.
                      || Guitar | Wah | Vibe | Amp ||

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                      • #26
                        Originally posted by Chistopher View Post
                        I've recently been experimenting with an OOP middle position and bass cuts instead of tone controls. Definitely a lot more flexible, but how many of the sounds are actually usable? I don't really know yet.
                        I've always been fascinated with clean verse crunch tones, so my most common four knob setting was the bridge volume backed off for cleanish rhythm and the amp set to go overdriven with the neck all the way up.

                        However I've almost moved completely to master volumes with a bass roll off because it gives me more in between sounds and the ability to use any pickup for rhythm or lead.

                        And it's ridiculously easy to set up.. I roll off all the bass and dial the amp down slightly below crunch.

                        So anytime I dial in more base, I get more crunch and it's really dynamic.. with the four knobs, I would flip the pickup switch only when I was moving from rhythm to lead and vice versa.

                        With the bass rolloff, I'm constantly tweaking a little more little bit less, and I really love having the knob on the upper bout so that it's really easy to adjust on the upstroke but unlikely to be accidentally hit.

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                        Last edited by zionstrat; 09-20-2021, 05:05 PM.
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