Floyd Rose mods for more brightness and attack

Discussion in 'Pickups, Electronics & General Tech' started by MASS DEFECT, Sep 1, 2020.

  1. MASS DEFECT

    MASS DEFECT SS.ORG Infiltrator

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    I acquired a Jackson SL2 and it is noticeably darker than my other Soloists. It plays awesome and I want to keep it. I already changed my bridge pickup to a Duncan Custom to tame that huge midrange. The bass is still on the dark, sloppy side. So apart from changing to brighter sounding strings or active pickups, what can I do to the Floyd Rose bridge to get more attack and snap?

    I have never modified an original floyd rose, and I don't know where to look first. Is there such a thing as brighter sounding saddles? I know changing to heavier blocks do darken the tone, so I may not be up for that.
     
  2. MaxOfMetal

    MaxOfMetal Likes trem wankery. Super Moderator

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    Throw a 1meg pot in there. That'll have a far more predictable and profound effect than swapping blocks.
     
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  3. odibrom

    odibrom .

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    I was about to say the same as @MaxOfMetal when I read the thread's title, so +1 on that. 1Mega Ohm pots do open the guitars' tones a lot, a really big lot. Backing the pickups from the strings also removes some mud, specially on the lower strings, so there's another thing to try out...

    Question: why specifically do you want to change things at the floyd-rose? tehree are lots of things to try on electronics to change a guitar's tone perception and feel: swapping the volume and/or tone pots to 1Mega Ohms, to removing the tone pot, changing capacitors' values, eventually even the inner wires that make all the connections (cork sniffers will notice the difference if you use solid core or stranded core wires and also on different wire gauges)...

    * Note/reminder: pots can vary a lot in value from what they are expected, lets say, a 500k Ohms pot can measure 450k or 550k ohms, depending on the margin range the brand sells them. The less the margin, the more precise the readings will be, which means also more expensive because it means more precise measurments and that takes time and time is money and so on.
     
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2020
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  4. MASS DEFECT

    MASS DEFECT SS.ORG Infiltrator

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    I might try that 1meg pot mod. I guess I wanted to try modding floyd parts because I think the guitar does translate the brightness of the duncan custom alright. But compared to my other, SL, this one has a more sloppy bass response. And I have tried other PAFs and medium gain pickups in there too (EVH, Suhr Aldrich, Dimarzio Anniv, Seth lovers). I like the neck and middle pups, and I don't want to go actives this time.

    And I haven't tried modding floyd parts. lol

    Pic of the guitar:
    118137481_605793140323455_2290365011565496556_n.jpg

    117657229_2521612631476861_4783784058078822678_n.jpg
     
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  5. Lozek

    Lozek Desk Magnetic Contributor

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    I have an ESP Horizon that was very dark, changing over to a Ti block and string blocks made an appreciable difference. It wasn't night and day but it definitely made the low end faster and less smeared than it was.
     
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  6. Hollowway

    Hollowway Extended Ranger

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    This is one of those topics that I’d like to see someone a/b recordings of the same guitar with two different blocks. I don’t think there’s any difference, and any difference you hear is just confirmation bias. It just doesn’t make any sense to me that the block is going to affect the tone of the guitar, when the pickups are just capturing string vibration.
     
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  7. c7spheres

    c7spheres GuitArtist

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    But confirmation bias tone metals and woods do make it sound better, because they make you play better! : ) jk. Seriously though I've heard many positive remarks about upgrading tone blocks and saddles etc.
     
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  8. Hollowway

    Hollowway Extended Ranger

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    Yeah, I think the blocks could affect sustain, etc. I just don’t see how they can affect brightness, for instance, because that’s not a function of the vibration of the string. I don’t know anything about the physics of it, but I’m skeptical of believing these things without any actual blind type evidence.
     
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  9. c7spheres

    c7spheres GuitArtist

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    Hehe, I'm just saying whether it actually does or doesn't affect tone really doesn't matter because just believing it makes it better will make you play better. Placebo effect goes a long way. That being said.. I'm a believer!
     
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  10. Hollowway

    Hollowway Extended Ranger

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    Haha, that I can get behind! We all need excuses to buy new stuff and mod - in the end I’ll take any rationalization that gets me there!
     
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  11. Edika

    Edika SS.org Regular

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    I have/had the same problem on my SL2. Truth be told for E standard it sounded huge but in C it had just too much lows and lower mids. I tried several pickups and while it improved the sound it still sounded too bass heavy. I changed the string inserts to Titanium ones but while an improvement it wasn't night and day. So I put EMG's in it and tuned it to D. It still dark sounding but a lot better than previously.

    But after all that I didn't try the 1meg pot which would have been the easiest and more cost effective thing to go with first. So I'd suggest do that first because the Titanium block is super expensive and the Titanium inserts are also quite a bit more expensive than the 1Meg pot. If I get bored of the EMG's and going back to passives that's what I'm doing first.
     
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  12. BrutalRob

    BrutalRob SS.org Regular

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    I would also recomment a different material for the block, be it steel, aluminium or titanium. From my own experience, it does have an impact.
    on the matter of how it works, my guess is the density of the material does determine which frequencies get preserved or dampened. Somewhat as to what different tonewood do (But before this starts off: i think on electric guitars tonewoods have a far lesser influence on the tone than on accoustic guitar)
    but more importanty, it does work (for me anyways) so i do not really care for the scientific explanation
     
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  13. Lozek

    Lozek Desk Magnetic Contributor

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    No problem, here's a clip I made when I changed the blocks over. The difference isn't that big in the first riff but listen to the second riff and you should hear what I was describing.

     
  14. MASS DEFECT

    MASS DEFECT SS.ORG Infiltrator

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    1k pots should arrive today and I'll install them tomorrow. Should I change the volume and the tone? or just the tone?

    I'm pretty 50/50 on floyd blocks. I tried a guitar when it had the stock block and a heavier FU block and it did have more sustain but it was at best, a moderate improvement vs the price. How much more for Titanium blocks that cost so much.

    I was thinking saddles since they have more contact with the string and might provide more attack. Im also getting brighter strings like NYXL to try. I have been using Dunlop Heavy Cores and they probably add to the slow attack.
     
  15. MaxOfMetal

    MaxOfMetal Likes trem wankery. Super Moderator

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    For the fullest effect, both.
     
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  16. Lozek

    Lozek Desk Magnetic Contributor

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    I'm not sure if the change of block materials is even a sustain thing, to me it feels more like the speed of note development and how it seperates from the next one.

    The saddles will also make a difference, my comparison video was before I changed the blocks over Ti too, it also made quite a difference.
     
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  17. Emperoff

    Emperoff Hasta la vista, Baby Contributor

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    Titanium block AND claw. Yes, the claw also makes a difference. Geniuine floyd blocks are around 60$. Check the correct size.
     
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2020
  18. budda

    budda Do not criticize as this Contributor

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    An a/b and a frequency analysis.
     
  19. fproject

    fproject SS.org Regular

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    I changed the stock block on one of my Floyd Roses to a larger brass block. There is a notable difference in tone but not added brightness. It made the tone fuller, not brighter.
    The guitar's elements like the body wood, neck type, tuners, nut, pickup mounting etc will also have an effect on the overall tone. It might just be the guitar's character.
     
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  20. Edika

    Edika SS.org Regular

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    I completely agree with this. The brass blocks I tried made the sound fuller and I felt they enhanced the bass frequencies more. I would not recommend them in a dark sounding instrument. I had them in three instruments and left them in one only.
     
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