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Stratocasters Have No Sustain!
Old 11th November 2010
  #1
Gear interested
 

Stratocasters Have No Sustain!

I never really gave much thought to the ES series until Kings of Leon and I've been playing Stratocasters for years, but I'm moving to the ES-335. It doesn't look as good as the Strat or feel as nice, but the tone and the sustain on the ES-335 makes it worth switching. It also made me realise that my PRS singlecut doesn't actually have any tone and only sounds good with tons of pedals and distortion.

Last edited by avalanchecanvass; 11th November 2010 at 03:44 PM.. Reason: grammar
Old 11th November 2010
  #2
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AllBread's Avatar
 

OMG, someone let David Gilmour know right away so he can switch!

I'd agree with you on the PRS, though!
Old 11th November 2010
  #3
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Mr.HOLMES's Avatar
Nah its like with everything some people love strats some love different guitar concepts.

The title of your topic is a big generality and only true for you.

I guess million players will disagree.

Play for fun at your retailer a fat Gibson Arch-top!!
Those guitars usually have a short tone!!
Old 11th November 2010
  #4
Quote:
Originally Posted by AllBread View Post
OMG, someone let David Gilmour know right away so he can switch!

I'd agree with you on the PRS, though!

After he notifies David Gilmour about how crappy Stratocasters really are, you might want to notify Carlos Santana and Al Di Meola about how crappy PRS guitars are heh
Old 11th November 2010
  #5
Gear Maniac
 

Why Move?

You shouldn't "move" to a 335, just add one to your toolbox. Each style of guitar has it's own signature. May main guitar is my PRS custom 24, which I love, it is most comfortable for me to play in most situations that I find myself in. I have a Jeff Beck strat, that when I play it, I fight it the whole time because it doesn't have the sustain, but for certain sounds, you can't beat it. I have a Les Paul standard, when I want to thick, Sustained distortion, but not the bite of the PRS, and when I don't mind my shoulder being sore the next day! For my jazz gigs, I have a carved top Hollow body which I play through an old Polytone. Point is, they are all different, sound different, respond different, and therefore I approach each different which adds to why I would use one guitar over the other in different situations.
Don't limit yourself to only one guitar at a time, it isn't cheating! This is gearslutz, indulge yourself!
Old 11th November 2010
  #6
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Ruudman's Avatar
 

My strat has great sustain.
What's wrong with my guitar? HELP!
Old 11th November 2010
  #7
Gear Maniac
 

It's broken! You can always put a wristband around the neck right on the nut like bass players do, that will help remove it. LOL.

Seriously, just to be clear, unless you are muting intentionally, all guitars will obviously have sustain, but my strat compared to my Les Paul or PRS, it's just not the same ( i.e. Spinal Tap), and of course pickups, amp, etc.....I am refering to the difference between a set neck and bolt on neck and how the sound transfers through the body of the guitar.
Old 11th November 2010
  #8
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_Ludovico's Avatar
 

This thread should read : Cheap and improperly setup stratocasters have no sustain.

The way I see it... is Stratocasters are not "meant" to sustain... what I mean is when I play mine, I do not expect creamy long notes with sustain, natural compression, etc... I expect more of a poppy sound, bright and defined. I believe this is where strats shine. When I want to play Santana style leads, I just switch to my Gibson. Different tools.
Old 11th November 2010
  #9
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Silent Sound's Avatar
Don't buy a guitar with a vibrato (or tremelo as Fender calls it) if you're looking for sustain. Get a solid body with a set neck and fixed bridge if that's what you want.

If your PRS doesn't have any tone, then I'd suggest getting a better amp or something. I used to have a rather large collection of guitars, but stopped buying new ones after I got my PRS McCarty. The neck carve took some getting used to initially, but now I like it better than any other guitar I own. It's fat near the nut for comfort with chords and thin near the body for speed with scales. But it's the tone that floors me every time. It's the only guitar I've ever played that I can strum a chord on and hear six distinctive strings, and not just a muddied chord, yet still retain the fatness and warmth I crave. It instantly become my main axe. Since then, I've sold off half my collection and just keep a few of the more distinct guitars around for when I want something different (Or when I need that vibrato). Next on my list is a Jazzmaster. But it's been next on my list for more than ten years now because I just don't think I would play it enough to justify the cost. Damn you PRS!
Old 11th November 2010
  #10
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Wow. Shows tone and taste are subjective. I wanted a prs Soooooo freggin bad until I bought one. It plays well, plenty of sustain and all. Action is perfect and the strings bend like speghetti. It sounds great until I pick up my Les Paul custom. Tone improves by double. I still have the prs, its a beautiful guitar and I wont sell it. As far as strats not sustaining? I dunno. A few of my strats sustain better than others I guess. Whole notes are boring, anywayz! Strats to me are all about bite and pick attack and choppy rhythms. Probably why none of my strats have buckers, except the JB.
Old 11th November 2010
  #11
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elambo's Avatar
Did the OP really "trash" Strats? Enough to bring so much defensiveness out of the closet? He's right ya know - relative to a 335 (or other fixed bridge git) the sustain from a Strat is pretty bad, but then nobody buys a Strat for its sustain.
Old 11th November 2010
  #12
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Can you really compare a solid body stray so a semi hollow? It hardly seems fair.
Old 11th November 2010
  #13
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Ragan's Avatar
 

What!? So all that footage of Hendrix is fake!? Damn. What a let down. Must have been a guy backstage playing all that creamy blues. Probably had a sick Ibanez. I shoulda known.
Old 11th November 2010
  #14
Gear interested
 

Even Clapton Struggles With Sustain

YouTube - Amazing Eric Clapton guitar solo

Even Eric Clapton can't get any sustain out of his Stratcaster, which is regarded by many to be the best Stratocaster in the world. Imagine if Eric Clapton did that solo on a Les Paul!
Old 11th November 2010
  #15
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elambo's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ragan View Post
What!? So all that footage of Hendrix is fake!? Damn. What a let down. Must have been a guy backstage playing all that creamy blues. Probably had a sick Ibanez. I shoulda known.
What!? So Hendrix's sound and tasty playing were attributed solely to the sustain of his guitar!? Well ****, I could be Hendrix then, just gimmie a Strat.
Old 11th November 2010
  #16
Gear interested
 

There are main reasons Clapton and Hendrix choose the Stratocaster over other guitars are:

1. Stratocaster always cut through the mix against loud bass and drums. They have a much brighter sound than the Gibsons - (depending on the pick-ups of course).

2. Stratocasters are light and easy on the shoulders.

3. Stratocaster look cool - whereas hollow bodies like the ES-335 look bloated and old fashioned.

The downsides of a Strat for me is the sustain, and the tone - which I think isn't as rich as a Tele and doesn't have the acoustic velvety warmth of a ES-335. Lastly, of course the single coil hum on vintage strats - which is very annoying.
Old 11th November 2010
  #17
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Ragan's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by elambo View Post
What!? So Hendrix's sound and tasty playing were attributed solely to the sustain of his guitar!? Well ****, I could be Hendrix then, just gimmie a Strat.
Ha. Fair point. I of course wouldn't suggest that. It's just a bit silly to say a Strat doesn't "have" sustain. Guitars can "have" any number of different attributes depending on what they're plugged into and whose hands they're in.
Old 11th November 2010
  #18
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toneguru's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by doubledecker View Post
After he notifies David Gilmour about how crappy Stratocasters really are, you might want to notify Carlos Santana and Al Di Meola about how crappy PRS guitars are heh
Notify Jeff Beck too.

Actually Strat pickups vary greatly. Back around 1978 I put a Schecter tapped assembly in my 75 Strat and it did the trick. To me the amp has as much to do with sustain as the axe. Speaker too to a small degree.
Old 11th November 2010
  #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by avalanchecanvass View Post
There are main reasons Clapton and Hendrix choose the Stratocaster over other guitars are:

1. Stratocaster always cut through the mix against loud bass and drums. They have a much brighter sound than the Gibsons - (depending on the pick-ups of course).

2. Stratocasters are light and easy on the shoulders.

3. Stratocaster look cool - whereas hollow bodies like the ES-335 look bloated and old fashioned.

The downsides of a Strat for me is the sustain, and the tone - which I think isn't as rich as a Tele and doesn't have the acoustic velvety warmth of a ES-335. Lastly, of course the single coil hum on vintage strats - which is very annoying.
Agreed on all points with the exception of the tone. In terms of tonal complexity I feel single coils on a strat have far more richness then buckers on a paul, or anything else. A well equipped les paul although irreplaceable for chunk, beef and sustain cannot breathe and doesn't match the clarity and richness of a nice strat, imho. I own several examples of each so im not biased either way. Just my observations.
Old 11th November 2010
  #20
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vincentvangogo's Avatar
 

Someone had to post it.
Old 11th November 2010
  #21
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esteso's Avatar
 

I'm sorry. This is just too funny.
Old 11th November 2010
  #22
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AshleySmith06's Avatar
 

ROFL @ the Spinal Tap vid heh

Have any of you tried a sustainer switch in your Strat's such like in Phil Collen's Jackson PC-1? I'm thinking of getting one if you can retro fit them to a Strat...???
Old 11th November 2010
  #23
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Lute's Avatar
 

Dave Gilmour has Strat 0001, the very first Strat. The sustain surpassed ALL guitars so Fender backed it off some from 0002 onwards heh
Old 11th November 2010
  #24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lute View Post
Dave Gilmour has Strat 0001, the very first Strat. The sustain surpassed ALL guitars so Fender backed it off some from 0002 onwards heh
It's not the first Strat ever made.

Gilmourish » The #0001 Stratocaster

(I know you were joking, just clarifying because I'm a Gilmour nerd, in case someone stumbles across this later on) heh
Old 11th November 2010
  #25
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Ragan's Avatar
 

I used to block my bridge with two columns of pennies. Worked great. Helped with sustain and gave it an overall more solid feel. It's an '82 Ash beast. Heavy as Hell and it sings like a bird.
Old 11th November 2010
  #26
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jchadstopherhuez's Avatar
 

if your strat has no sustain...you simply have the wrong strat.

or more specifically...the wrong guitar...for YOU.

if a 335 works for you....by all means....get one....or more specifically...get THE one....for you.

best,

jchristopherhughes
Old 11th November 2010
  #27
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toneguru's Avatar
Play with thick nickle strings like 11's and tone, sustain and tuning will all improve.
Old 11th November 2010
  #28
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GeorgeHayduke's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by avalanchecanvass View Post
...
The downsides of a Strat for me is the sustain, and the tone - which I think isn't as rich as a Tele and doesn't have the acoustic velvety warmth of a ES-335. Lastly, of course the single coil hum on vintage strats - which is very annoying.
To me the strat is about attack (dynamics) and the woodyness of the sound. And eg. Hendrix' hands were never still. Suited him and his Marshall well (I'd love to have heard him on a Fender amp, just to hear..). I agree with others that you can still get great sustain from a strat, but for arguments sake don't forget Gilmour uses compression, verb, delay and distortion!

The Gibson sound is too dull and undynamic for me, regardless of sustain, though I've not really given it an honest chance, tbo.

My main guitar (I do kind of electronic rock) is a standard Tele, best of both worlds imo., and I live fine without the tremolo or humbuckers. When you work hard on the Tele it both has sound, expression and sustain. I guess I like to give my guitars a bit of a whacking and the Tele works well in that regard because it doesn't quite have the dynamics of the strat.
Old 11th November 2010
  #29
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sounds Great View Post
Not so about Stratocasters. As far as Carlos, yes, please, somebody tell him.
Everytime he plays, it's obvious.
Old 12th November 2010
  #30
Moderator
 
Blast9's Avatar
LOL - yuk

-

IMHO Every electric guitar player should replace their bridge hardware with Callaham - excellent sustain and tone enhancement.

(this is now reading like one of those spam emails in my junk folder)
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