What’s in the Box

I recently came across the JHS Little Black Amp Box.

It’s a little box that goes in an amp’s effects loop and promises cranked tube tone at lower volume. From what I can tell it’s just a box with a volume knob in it. So, basically, it would act as a master volume. If your amp already has a master volume it’s probably not needed but if you have an effects loop and no master volume this could be useful.

The Latest from Louisiana

I’ve always been an admirer of Komet amps. They sound fantastic and the innards are a work of art.
Since I’m just back from Mardi Gras I decide to share something else from Louisiana or more specifically Baton Rouge.
This is the Komet Areo 33. I really like the clean tones that start at about 4:50.

Old Fender Deluxes

If you have any interest at all in old Fender Deluxe amps you need to check out this video. While there are similarities to the amps they also all have their own personalities. Fender made changes over the years to the amps, probably most notably to the phase inverter. If you don’t know what a phase inverter is don’t worry. You can still listen in and pick your favorite. It might not be the most popular 5E3 but then again, it might be…

When Your Pickup Height is Just Not Right

I was recently doing some recording with my stratocaster and was not getting good results. I was tweaking an amplifier at this time but after trying another guitar I found that my strat was just not sounding good.

I also have a Les Paul which is a VERY loud guitar. When playing the strat and Les Paul back to back I found the strat was almost louder than the Les Paul but not sounding very good. The strat is actually a guitar I put together from parts but they were all good stuff. It has a mahogany body and maple neck with a rosewood fingerboard.

The volume comparison with the Les Paul is what pointed me in the correct direction to improve the start’s tone. I had the pickups too high. You can get a good amount of output with the pickups close to the stings but the tone suffers. It sounded muddy and cheap. Pickup height is also hard to judge because all pickups are different. You can’t just look at the distance on another guitar and copy it. It really comes down to experimenting and using your ear.