November 27, 2019 at 5:21 pm #151286
If I post some photo’s of the amp/guitar which I own I was wondering if someone could help me to setup this rig correctly so I can begin my first beginner video?
Any help would be much appreciated.
I have no idea what I am doing as far as the amp configuration and setup goes most especially.
November 27, 2019 at 5:58 pm #151291Canada MooseParticipant
Depends how you’re recording; what recording gear you’re using.
You either record thru a mic or directly into your computer.
Either way you need an interface (convert your 1/4″ jack signal into digital signal) and then some kind of DAW (Digital Audio Workstation) on your computer – like Garageband.
On the DAW you load the backing track BT and then record your playing over the BT, then upload the audio to Soundcloud (free) and post that link here on Forum. If you’re making a video, then you record it into iMovie or some home movie program and post that to YouTube.
That’s a pretty basic explanation from a non-techie; but the world is digital now so you’ve got to get your playing (audio and/or video) into a digital format on your computer and (after editing) that’s what you upload to the internet and then post that link here.
hope that helps. good luck
November 27, 2019 at 6:13 pm #151293
Welcome to AM you have found a great place and lots of people here will help you with your queries. I would suggest that if you are absolutely at stage zero and you have brought some kit and you want a little advice on set up etc I would list make and model of your amp and guitar on this thread. Someone will likely know the kit and be able to advise. Brian has a beginner course which would be your best port of call to get started. You can find it on the lessons page just scroll down to find the link on the left hand side. As a rule of thumb you can set amps up with most of the tone controls pointing north IE 12 o’clock. There is a lesson that is a very fun one to start with which is LEG022, and is fun but to get it sounding good will take some considerable work. There are many more to choose from but this is simple and satisfying so that you can at least start to learn a small section of music. I would certainly suggest beginner course will be the way to go though.
All the best
November 27, 2019 at 6:17 pm #151294
Thank you for the response 🙂
I think it’s not my fault for being clear as this is all very new to me.
I meant setting up the amp as in for example tone controls and things of that nature (if I am even using that term correctly haha).
November 27, 2019 at 6:42 pm #151295
Thank you so so much.
I will upload some high res pictures of my amp and guitar now.
re: “There is a lesson that is a very fun one to start with which is LEG022, and is fun but to get it sounding good will take some considerable work.”
I just had a look at LEGO22 and nearly fell of my chair. If it takes me 12 months to learn how to play that I will be happy lol – it will probably take me longer than that I am guessing.
Attached you guys will find a picture of my guitar and some close up pics of the dials on my amp.
This thing has so many settings and dials it could power a Star Wars ship.
Also just confirming one more thing?
My guitar is to be tuned in the key of A, is that correct?
And yes, as soon as I can get this amp/guitar setup I plan on commencing the Beginner Course. I am certainly going to have my hands full.
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November 27, 2019 at 6:47 pm #151300
Also posting a closer up photo of the guitar.
I know that one of these dials controls volume.
Not too sure what the other dial might do and also don’t really understand the difference between this switch [Treble vs Rhythm]??
Sorry re all the questions.
I know I am pushing my luck already haha
Again thanks for all of the help guys
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November 27, 2019 at 8:06 pm #151309richard tParticipant
If you are an absolute beginner and have no experience with amps, this amp will seem overwhelming.
Like most amps, it has the basic tone controls and volume. Those are self explanatory. Too loud? turn down the volume. Too much bass? turn down the Bass. etc.
But in addition, this amp is a modeling amp, which means it can sound like many different popular amps. 33 different amps in this case for the vt20x. There is a preset knob or button for presets that allows you switch between types of amps, each amp having its own distinct sound.
There is a list for presets for Artists or songs at various internet sites. Just do a search for presets for the vt20x.
To further complicate matters, your amp also has sound effects, similar to effects pedals people use on amps without effects. Each of these affects will change the sound of whichever amp model you are using.
It’s quite complex for a beginner but is explained quite well in the manual that can be found on line.
As to the guitar. Knob closest to the headstock is usually volume and the other one is tone. The switch in the treble position will play the pickup by the bridge,furthest away from the headstock, and the rhythm will play what is called the neck pickup, which is closer to the headstock.
The amp you have has a built in guitar tuner. Guitars are tuned to what is called standard tuning or 440 HZ.
I hope this helps. If not let me know and I will try to help. We were all beginners once.
November 27, 2019 at 8:42 pm #151311
@richard t you are an absolute legend.
I know that this must have been quite the effort i.e. to read my post, find the amp details, and then to try to decipher it in order to make it easier for me. + answering all of my general guitar questions.
Good karma is coming your way sir. I cannot thank you enough.
I have printed out your response above and will get to reading everything I can online.
November 27, 2019 at 8:56 pm #151312
Hi @richard or anybody just one more quick question…
“The amp you have has a built in guitar tuner. Guitars are tuned to what is called standard tuning or 440 HZ.”
From what I can gather acoustic guitars are tuned in the key of E.
Is it the same for electric guitars when we want a bluesy kind of sound as these are the beginner videos I will be undertaking.?
November 28, 2019 at 2:03 am #151316BillyParticipant
Morning, welcome to AM.
Having a look on the VOX website and a read at the pdf for your amp ..can be found here.. will possibly be a better help to in understanding your amp fully..
440HZ is standard tuning, E.A.D.G.B.E( I think I read somewhere that it is an A11th/e when played open)..Standard tuning is the same on acoustic as electric.
If you are a premium member then you will find you have access to beginner courses which cover from the basics to lead licks.
Have fun man, looking forward to hearing you showcase us some playing when you are ready..
November 28, 2019 at 2:07 am #151317snakechislerParticipant
Here’s a cool vid on dialing in tone, hope it’s useful
December 3, 2019 at 8:56 am #151614
Thanks for the video suggestion my friend.
I have already watched it three times and thanks to the YOUTUBE algorithm I am now getting all kinds of suggested videos to help as well.
So much fun watching these guys just play about with settings and tone and messing around on their guitars.
I guess that shows just how fresh I am hey haha
November 28, 2019 at 6:40 pm #151369
You’ve got a great kit for getting started and it will carry you through for some time to come, congratualtions.
You can see what a great place this is you will get loads of help from all over the world. I and I know Billy are both from the UK. So sometimes replies get a bit out of sync etc time wise.
Re tuning, your Amp has a tuning facility and the mention of 440hz or Hertz which is the vibrating frequency of the open ‘A’ string when properly tuned. (If you were to tune the old fashioned way and bought yourself a tuning fork you would most likely get an ‘A’ tuning fork and it will likely be stamped 440.) Your Amp manual will explain its tuning mechanism use but there will be a light to indicate when the tune is correct.
The Strings of your guitar are ‘E’ or 6th the Thickest string and is known as a ‘wound’ string because it constructed to make up its exact thickness with a wrap of thinner wire. The type of wrap comes into play as regards tone etc. when you buy yourself a new set of strings i.e. best strings for acoustic guitars will likely have a phosphor bronze winding giving a copper colour to them.
Before you get started it would be a good idea to get a friend who plays, if you have one, or your local shop to check the guitar action and if necessary get it ‘set up’. This is the process of setting the strings to be in the best relationship within the adjustment range of the bridge with the fret board and the exact length for intonation. This you might feel you want to skip but a well set up guitar will play much more readily and as soon as you get off the ground you will need it to be setup correctly anyway so why not start on the right foot for an easier ride. There is plenty enough to challenge you to start with without having to fight a poor setup.
You could do well to put new strings on if the ones fitted are anything but new. Strings come not only in differing types of materials but also in make up, cost and importantly the wire gauges used. Thinnest strings are more easily bent and will be kinder to soft finger tips whilst you get going. Your finger tips will harden a little as you get used to playing but unfortunately until then, about a week or two of regular practice they may be a bit sensitive.
Strings are normally sold in sets of 6 and a leading maker is Ernie Ball. Their Super Slinky and Regular Slinky string are among the most popular. The difference in naming separates the gauge of the strings and people tend to use the diameter of the thinnest string to describe what they have for instance a set of ‘nines’ would refer to the Super Slinky as the thinnest string being 0.009 thousands of an inch in diameter which is listed on the front of the pack or they might be referred to the regulars as ’10 46s’ which are the thinnest and thickest sizes of strings of that set. etc.
There are more expensive strings which are of the latest design called nano coated and one make and size which I can recommend would be Elixir Nanoweb 10 46s. They are twice the price but last three times or more as long and hold their tone much longer. You wont do too much bending at first so tens are what I would recommend or nines for a more elastic version. Playing with the thicker strings will help build strength into your fingers but will make for a less comfortable start.
So the thickest string which is at the top of the fret-board gives the lowest or bass-est tone and is tuned to low ‘E’ the thinnest String is also tuned to an ‘E’ but in a higher octave. When tutors talk about strings they often talk about the top ‘E’ string and higher notes this can be a bit confusing because they will mean the bottom string on the fret board but which resonates at the higher or top notes.
From the thickest vertically down the Strings are Tuned Low ‘E’ or 6th string, ‘A’ for the 5th (@440hz), ‘D’ the 4th, G the 3rd, B the 2nd, and E the 1st and thinnest.
So that should get you started I wouldn’t worry too much about your amp settings just use the clean setting, with least distortion as you need to hear how effectively you are fretting the strings during practice. Forget the rest of the effects etc till you have got a bit of the basics going. Also practice slowly as accuracy will be learnt best that way and once gained speed will follow.
I hope that’s a help and best of Luck
November 28, 2019 at 7:49 pm #151371Canada MooseParticipant
i’ve got the Vox VT20 very similar to yours.
Suggest you just run through all the pre-sets and find ones you like. Moving clockwise you go from cleaner to more and more distortion presets.
The manual explains each preset too. Lots of great tones built in. Read the manual, explore the settings.
It’s all trial and error; different tastes for every player; find what you like.
December 3, 2019 at 8:06 am #151608
You said “It’s all trial and error; different tastes for every player; find what you like.” and my-oh-my were you not kidding.
I truly had no idea just what I was in for.
I have been playing around with it all quite a bit and have the setup sounding much better. It’s good but we aren’t there just yet.
I will keep working away at it all.
I am pretty stubborn haha
I think part of the problem for me at the moment is  I don’t have a great ear for music even though I really do love music and  I cannot play a single lick (yet lol) so it’s difficult for me to compare my “clean blues sound” with that of John Mayer/Clapton/BB King etc…
So I am guessing the more I familiarize myself with the amp + increase my ability to play it will all come together.
Thanks for all of the advice.
December 3, 2019 at 7:57 am #151607
I just wanted everybody to know that I AM HAVING THE TIME OF MY LIFE!!!
It’s hard for me to put into words.
I really haven’t tackled anything super challenging just yet.
Working out the amp was a much bigger challenge than I had anticipated and I am quite sure there still needs to be more work done.
It’s going to be a lot of trial and error for me most especially because I don’t have a great “EAR” for music.
I have it sounding pretty damn good though.
But this guitar/amp very well may be the most rewarding purchase I have ever made.
I walk past my guitar and it makes me smile.
Every chance I get I am picking it up and working away.
I really have no idea what I am doing a lot of the time but the videos on here are superb and so much help.
This really is so much fun.
I feel very lucky and blessed.
Thanks everyone a thousand times over.
December 3, 2019 at 8:48 am #151613
@johnstrat I am just blown away by this post.
Part of me wants to apologize as this must have taken you quite a while to compose and I am sure you have much better things to do. You’ve included more information than I ever could have hoped for.
Everybody on here has been so great and I’m truly thankful for the content, the advice, the community, for it all.
I don’t actually have anybody close to me who plays so I think I just might have to take all my gear back into the store and get them to assist with setup and guitar action. I really had no idea there was so much involved. I agree with what you are saying completely and we might as well get things started on the right foot. And yes haha there is most certainly enough to challenge me without fighting the poor setup. I am getting my ass kicked at the moment and I think it may be the case for a long while.
I have been working on “pattern one” from the BLUES LEAD GUITAR COURSE and I am getting there although I am still very very slow and I can still botch it on many occasion. But I really am having so much fun. It’s true what they say; guitars are just better.
I will have a chat with them in-store re new strings while they help me with setup. It did look like my guitar had been sitting in store for a long while prior to my purchase. I don’t mind paying for the higher quality Elixir Nanoweb 10 46s. It sounds as though they are well worth the extra money.
I think part of the reason I am having so much trouble figuring out the amp/tone might be because I cannot play a single lick and have no idea how to bend (if I am using that term in the correct context) so it’s hard for me to compare my “clean blues sound” with that of artists I am familiar with e.g. John Mayer/ BB King/Clapton etc… Not to mention I don’t have the greatest ear for music. I love music immensely but it does not love me back.
So until I get to the store I just have as little distortion present as possible and I’ve turned the volume down. I really don’t know if it’s as clean as it could be but I will get them in-store to help out.
I will practice slowly as you suggested and I’ll keep moving forward.
I cannot wait to learn more about the guitar, the amp, the theory, pedals, anything and everything. Bring it all on.
“I hope that’s a help and best of Luck” -JohnStrat
You have been a TREMENDOUS help. Thanks mate. Good karma and energy coming your way I am sure.
December 3, 2019 at 9:05 am #151615
@Billy just wanted to say thanks for the welcome and for the information within the post my friend.
I think it’s going to be a long long while before I am ready to show you guys anything.
I am a slower learner. Guitar doesn’t really come naturally to me. But I will chip away at it all and move forward even if it’s at a snails pace.
@johnstrat has suggested me a beautiful video [LEG022] and I am currently working on pattern one from the BLUES LEAD GUITAR COURSE.
If you think there is anything I might need to cover please let me know as I am always open to suggestions and guidance.
Otherwise, I have my hands full trying to NOT murder any of the above haha
Thanks again and all the best 🙂
December 4, 2019 at 8:18 pm #151709
Thanks for the appreciation re the last message it did take a while but when one is trying to explain any thing its worth the effort to set it out clearly, I am glad you appreciated it and you are very welcome.
There is a very important point I should like to make and it will probably seem a bit bizarre at first blush concerning tone. A great deal of tone comes from your fingers. Now this is something that you will learn even subconsciously as you get further down the line but it is very unlikely to be available to you in the short term and something that the beginner will be unlikely to fully appreciate till it is pointed out.
If you think about it BB and most of those who went before him did not have loads of pedals and other sound generating effects in their amps partly because they were not invented or available and if they were they tended to be expensive extras beyond the humble blues players pocket. They played the instruments in such a way as to generate with their hands the sounds they wanted to make! This is very different from simply fretting a string and plucking it. We often refer to this as nuances and phrasing (which is the spacing and emphasis of the notes).
Also it should be noted that it is not to say that some effects such as slap back and reverb are not useful additions they certainly are and we all use them.
However when you start playing as a total beginner you will have a job to get your fingers into the shape of the chords or perhaps the span of the frets required initially. All this makes things very awkward at first but as you practice things become easier and gradually you will become more dexterous and find that you are able to hold a certain position readily and without straining. From this emenates the fluidity of movement that you require and subsequently the freedom to generate the nuances attaching to the notes to generate the tone that you want.
Well from that point of fluidity where you start to find that you are generating a bit of ease in your basic ability. You will be noticing that although you can play the notes that are on the tab fluently it just wont sound the same as say Brian. Don’t be too disappointed or surprised these are definite steps in learning.
If you watch any of Brian’s playing closely you will see that his fingers are 99% of the time moving. If holding a single note it may well require sustaining by vibrating the fretting finger or other tone generating technique. BB was renown for his sustain ability bending, hammering etc. Now yes you can buy a sustain pedal or have a switch to call it up in your Amp but that is not a substitute for it coming from your hands.
So the point is this, realize at what stage you are at and try to make things sound as good as you can with the advice from the various lessons and within the scope of your current ability. This will develop your ear for the sounds and slowly but surely you will pick it all up.
Because you cannot for instance vibrato your fingers or bend strings properly initially you will find that you can say learn to play a lesson such as LEG 022 (which I am glad you like by the way, it is a beauty for sure) but it wont sound as wonderful as it is recorded by Brian.
Psychologically what you need to do is establish your achievement in having cracked the basics of the lesson learned and then move on to a new one perhaps a micro lesson. Then in due course come back to 022 and you will find that you will be able to play it with an improved ability and it will sound that much closer to the original. Eventually you will be able to get it just so.
The tone generating ability of the players is what separates the Men from the boys. BB is the perfect example. He can play a single note but because he bends it or sustains it and plays it at the perfect complimentary moment boy o boy we know what a critical achievement it can be.
So the moral of that is don’t fuss too much with all the goodies in the amp till you have moved up the road a ways. But also this is about having fun and if you want to spend some time trying the various effects and getting to understand them why not give it a go but keep it in perspective . There are players who hide behind effects for lack of true ability.
So sorry for another quite long post but I think its a good tip to help you along the straight and narrow. It would be nice to hear what other members think about this point. Hopefully some will chip in.
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