What determines the sound in an amp

I found this video informative, eye-opening and quite amusing.

I recommend it to everybody who’s wondering where the sound of an amp comes from.
Dude’s got a good channel


Ha !! He dropped onto my YT radar as well but alongside Alter Bridge ! So I went for the musical extravaganza but I’ll be back to check this guy out. !



Thanks for sharing @LievenDV that was a super cool vid! :clap: :sunglasses: :+1:

That video is great. I just came here to post it and saw you already had!

He’s also got another great vid on where electric guitar tone comes from. Really breaks stuff down in an evidence based way, and great production quality too.

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Allright! Very good thank you.

Now i need to find an amp that"ll suit my needs.

Interesting, presented in a manner that keeps your attention, like it!

Aha, you’ve found the Alter bridge rabbit hole :joy:, I think that I might send you off on another, you found Spiritbox yet?

I watched that one at around the time I asked the question:
How much time do you spend practicing your amp? :laughing:
Now, I’m not even a performer, and I know nothing about… anything really, but it seems all we need is a stick, some wire, a pickup, and a fishing box…
Could this be what @CT is talking about when he says he’s focusing on fishing? :rofl:


@brianlarsen Yep that’s the video around guitar tone. Pickups, pots, pickup positioning.

So did you spend much time playing around with your amp? I’m mucking around with mine a bit more but it’s so capable I usually either base everything around the same amp model and tweak that or just download a preconfigured tone straight to it.

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Haha, you know me- not a tone chaser at all! :laughing:
But I do love understanding how things work and I enjoy having the ability to dial in different tones when I want to.

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Nice ,
and yet again a remarkable video of this man, I have also seen the one with the guitar tone video … he kicks a lot of holy houses (no idea if that is a correct English term) … I also immediately thought of Clint when I saw that fishing box… But I’m happy with my new vox ac15c1, it looks a lot nicer in my living room than an old fish box :stuck_out_tongue_closed_eyes:, and I don’t know anything about potentiometers and the building conecting what he has done,… :sweat_smile:

Mmm. Thanks for making me spend/waste 18 minutes 34 seconds of my life watching this. :weary: I’m still none the wiser. This is why I’m not a tone chaser! :woozy_face:
Amp set on clean, all the knobs at 12 o’clock. Good to go! :smiley:

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Great share Lieven, after watching this I can justify some of the time I spend twiddling knobs !

@DarrellW Her vocals remind me of a young Lesley Roy !

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Too bad they call it fishing and not catching…

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I was taught as a child 'every day is a good fishing day, :sunglasses:… not every day is a good catching day…

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At the risk of being somewhat contrarian, I’m not completely convinced about the conclusions drawn in this video on the following grounds:

  1. I’m not sure if the individual amps that switch bias, tubes, and rectifiers are necessarily good at performing those tasks. He admits to not knowing circuits so how would he know if those amps are performing those switches correctly? He only proved that these switching amps may not really offer that much of a tone shift.
  2. There is absolutely no pushback or disagreement in the comments of this video. There are always detractors to each and every point of view and pros and cons to everything under the sun on God’s green earth. Highly suspect.
  3. He never answers the question of where the tone comes from in a guitar amp. Amp tone is the sum total of all the parts including the guitar (its parts and functions including natural compression from humbuckers) and the player.
  4. He never dials in a tube amp at the edge of breakup. That’s where the magic happens, and something that SS amps, including tackle box rigs, can’t really approximate all that well.

That’s my two cents. Stay tuned to your favorite youtube channels for videos that dispute his findings.

Do you think you might be a bit harsh on the guy?

Fair enough not to be ‘completely convinced’ by the chap’s research and experimentation, but he does not make any bold or controversial claims that I picked up on. The main message I received was that there’s a lot of subjective verbosity in descriptions of what tones the different components produce in various amps, without much evidence/explanation provided of how, or description of what is going on.

Fair play to the chap. He did some research, focused on some of the components these tones were attributed to and compared switching those fx on and off to let us hear the difference. He never said there wasn’t any. Could they have been defective? Possibly, but that’s quite a presumption.

The fact that he was able to manipulate the various settings in the different amps to approach similar tones in the other ones is interesting. I was also impressed that he was able to assemble his fishing box to approximate the sounds of all three, even if not in the interesting breakup area.

You are right that there will always be some disagreement about everything. That does not mean they have valid arguments (Flat-earthers spring to mind).

I like an explanation that makes sense to me, especially in areas where I don’t have enough experience/understanding to form my own opinions.
You’re well ahead of me on that front and your personal experience will serve you far better than some YT dude telling you there’s little fundamental difference between the amps :laughing:
Cheers for making me think again.


Haha! Boy did I take the cheese on that one! I should have taken it as the playful joke that it was meant to be. So much tone comes from the amp. Guess he was poking fun at guys like me that sometimes take this stuff seriously. Who cares what some other dude thinks about amp tone. Whatever. Hilarious! I’m off to get a cold adult beverage. LOL

Well if you’ve moved beyond the 5 presets on the Yamaha that’s tweaking ;-).

Tone is in the fingers though. And the guitar, and the amp, and the oxygen free gold plated monster cable…

He doesn’t really state what we should think, only demonstrates. I liked his piece by piece reduction based approach. And he digs into a few of those things in his other videos.

What I took from it is that different amps DO have different tones, but it doesn’t seem to come from where we might think. It doesn’t seem to be type of tube/rectifier/etc, but speaker, cab, circuitry (especially tone/EQ circuitry), whether distortion happens pre or post amplifcation, all have a big impact.

If you “copy” what the tone and distortion circuitry does in a fishing tackle box, you can get pretty close to real amp tones.

I don’t think people are going to be going out and causing a shortage of fishing tackle boxes in a rush to DIY an amp circuit - because he basically built his own amp there.

However it DOES give me confidence that a decent modelling amp has a pretty good chance of mimicing a real amp, if done well, and we’re all probably better off trying to figure out how our EQ knobs and fingers work to get some tone rather than dropping big $$$ on classic amps.