Adding a Strat to the mix

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by PanteraFan, May 13, 2002.

  1. Today, we had our first rehearsal with our new singer. He's great and all, but he's got an MIM Strat, and I couldn't really figure out how to EQ him in the mix. He kept getting feedback with his bridge single coil selected solo, so we moved him to middle + bridge and we got a little more workable sound.

    I can EQ my lead guitarist great, he's got a bridge humbucker so I just crank his volume + tone, scoop his mids and then get his levels right.

    So, my question is this - how do I mix the Strat for a good rhythm guitar sound? We downtune a whole step and use a lot of distortion(metal band) so any help would be appreciated.

    Thanks in advance,

  2. Tell Him to get the Hot Rails Pickup by Seymour Duncan. It'll get a heavier sound, plus I think It's humcancelling. (I could be wrong).

    If your other guitarist scoops his mids ALL THE WAY OUT, he won't be heard in the mix, and that's a fact. All the better for you to be heard PanteraFan, but not better for your band IMO.
  3. He already spent £350 on the guitar, he won't buy a new pickup.

    And, amazingly, my lead guitarist actually does get heard with a scooped tone. The mids are my space. My lead guitarist always pushes his treble a bit more than his bass, with almost no mids. It sounds really good to my ears, just a case of EQ'ing my rhythm guitarist now.
  4. downstairs


    May 13, 2001
    Pasadena, MD
    maybe drop his drive down a little bit, maybe a little bit of highs off too. when i play guitar (Ahhhhhh!) if i get alot of feedback i'll turn down the tone a little big or take some of the drove down, and it works (99% of the time).
  5. jasonbraatz


    Oct 18, 2000
    Oakland, CA
    if you're getting lots of feedback, turn your amps down.
  6. Then we can't hear ourselves over our drummer. He's a loud rock player, and has to be able to hear himself over the amps. He's a real purist, and wants you to be able to pick his beats out. I'm just talking about the crappy practice room amps - two 50W guitar combos and a 70W bass combo, and a drummer. Oh yeah, and 120W of vocals available. If I had my Peavey there'd be no problem, I could overpower all of them at 5 on my volume knob. Practicing, we just want audible bass, but half-decent guitars.

    So, any decent Strat rhythm settings?
  7. Sorry...wish I knew more.....

    One question....If he knew he was playing in a heavy band, why the hell did your singer buy a Strat? There are plenty of other guitars at that price that would be better deals.
  8. He didn't actually buy it for our band...he bought it for himself to learn on, and of course the Strat is the famous Fender. To a novice, a guitar is a guitar.

    I still think he should be able to get a decent metal sound out of it. My first recommendation was to get some stainless strings and perhaps a Boss MD-2. But for now, all he's got is the overdrive built into the amps he plays through. Maybe if he favours the middle + neck pups more, he can get a more chunky sound? Maybe roling off the tone on his bridge pup whill in mid + bridge?
  9. Does "he's a real purist" mean that he doesn't have any dynamics whatsoever? There's no reason that the guitars and bass should be at anywhere near gig volume when you're rehearsing. None.
  10. Jeff Moote

    Jeff Moote Supporting Member

    Oct 11, 2001
    Beamsville, ON, Canada
    Hey, Iron Maiden uses strats :D


    My suggestions are to use pups closer to the neck i.e. neck, neck & middle and slightly lower tone knob settings... Metal is better dark at the guitar and adding brightness to it at the disto or amp.

    Hope it helps :)
  11. Captain Awesome

    Captain Awesome

    Apr 2, 2001
    I have a Strat and it works great for metal type music, because it is the Fat Strat model with a humbucking pickup in the bridge position. Seriously, one pickup will change everything.
  12. Gman


    Jan 4, 2000
    Indianapolis, IN
    I've never had any luck trying to play anything close to metal with a single coil only guitar. I used to play with a guitar player that liked his Strat better than his Wolfgang, so rarely plyed the Peavey, even though the Humbuckers in the Peavey were just what the doctor ordered.

    I put a Duncan Lil'59er in my sons strat. Makes all the difference in the world. $60 for the pup, and 30 minutes to put it in.

    So, sorry, I don't have any EQ setting for you, I just have to agree with the others. You need a humbucker.

  13. so you've got a sound-hogging drummer and two guitarists who can't even EQ their own instruments? you've got your work cut out for you...
  14. A comment has been made that Iron Maiden use Strats - but have you seen the Strats they use???? Dave Murray used to have humbuckers in Bridge and Neck positions - their sound was typically the humbucker in the neck position!!!

    Hmm, as far as EQing you band goes, lead guitar should be cutting - plenty of treble and some bass to add deoth, rhythm should be lots of mids - neck plus mid with the tones down to say 6 or 7, bass needs to hold down the bottom end, cut treble, boost bass and a bit of mid.

    If the Strat is feeding back, he needs ot cut the gain on the amp he's using and increase the volume!

    Just a thought!!! I could be way off, but give it a try and see what happens.

    As far as pickups go - I have a Squier Strat that I put a hot rails pickup into (yes it is humbucking!). It made the Strat almost unusable as a Strat. That classic Strat sound was gone, it now sounds kinda Les Paulish but without the sustain!!! And the other 2 pickups were next to useless 'cos the output of the SD was so much higher.

    I recently installed a set of Fender Texas Special pickups. This retains the Strat sound - but can compete volume wise with our guitarists Les Paul! I also ran an additional wire from the bridge pickup to the neck tone pot - this allows you to adjust the tone on the bridge pickup when used on its own!!! I got these from Coda Music for about £100.

    I realise that he's not wanting to spend more but ti might be worth it for everyone. If not you could try the EQing I suggested above.:)
  15. Oh no, they can EQ their instruments to sound great with drums or solo - it just ends up that I get buried :D. I nominated myself as band soundman, as I really understand a lot more about amp setup, effects etc.

    As for the drummer, well, he likes to hear himself as much as possible. He really values his instrument, and doesn't see why it should play a supporting role. He's a really great drummer, but when drummers and guitarists want to be the loudest, it degenerates into a vicous circle. When we practice at the main rehearsal studio(not yet with our new singer) we can drown him out like nobodies business, and as a result he becomes very obedient. Shame the rooms are out of action until late June :(.

    Johnny Boom Boo, thanks for the info. I don't think he'll want to mess his Strat up though, and the £100 would be better spent on a decent distortion pedal and a Shure mic + stand or something. The EQ tips will be great though, thanks.
  16. CS


    Dec 11, 1999
    Another option is to use a fuzz pedal. Some prefer a clean amp and others like the fuzz face and clones really roar with a slightly dirty amp.

    EDIT didnt see the last post

    Soho Soundhouse are doing a Fuzz Face reissue for £69 but I havent tried it. A mate of mine has the Fulltone 69 and this is an awesome pedal but its £160+, I wont even tell you how much my fuzz factory was...
  17. Captain Awesome

    Captain Awesome

    Apr 2, 2001
    Seriously, IMO the pickup makes a bigger difference than the dist. pedal etc. Only one of them needs to be changed -- the bridge one. A SD JB Jr. (single coil sized humbucker) costs $70 US, not sure what it is in £ terms.

  18. I agree that the pickup is the issue. However I would advocate replacing the set of pickups. As I found, replacing one pickup makes your guitar a one trick pony!!!!! Adding a balanced set keeps the versatility and also the Strat sound! The $70 you mention would equate to about £50, but over here the pickup would probably cost nearer £70!!!!

    Thats why I think a set for £100 is a better deal! Plus with the set you can run a wire from the bridge pickup to the neck pickup tone pot. When you have the bridge pickup selected you can adjust it's tone with the neck tone pot!
  19. CS


    Dec 11, 1999
    some points

    using two bucker equipped guitars in the same band will present different problems.

    Higher gain single coils like the Texas Specials are awesome pups but will still feed back at these gain levels.

    I still say Strat/Fuzz Face/lower gain (tube) amp at the edge of distortion. If you dont believe me then find out what Jimi Hendrix was using to get his high gain sounds.
  20. This is what I was thinking CS. Two bucker equipped guitars would probably turn to mush at the levels we'd have. In fact, my rhythm guitarist/singer loves Jimi's tone, it's what he's aiming for in fact. I knw that he won't come close for a long time, but he likes that sound. My lead guitarist likes the thrashy Slayer type soound, for palm muting and things. My rhythm guitarist likes full, melodic sounding chords. The Fat Strat he played a few times in the store didn't do anything for him apparently, he specifically asked for a regular Strat, I found out today.

    He's trying some of the EQ tips on his home setup, he says he's found the following to be working:

    Neck + Mid pickup.

    Neck tone at 10.
    Mid tone at 6.
    Drive gain at 6.
    Bass flat, mids +3 boost, treble +2 boost.
    And the metal pick I gave him is working wonders, apparently :D.

    We'll just have to see how it fits with the whole band and not just my other guitarist at the next practice.