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Should demo's be standardised?


knotty
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Cool' date=' forum malfuntion above. That type of abortion is why I don't come here much anymore.[/quote']

 

 

I thought it was some kind of rant.

 

Knotty

If you want standardized demos you should watch Phil X

It is a good concept but difficult to accomplish.

Really standardized demos need a standardized player..

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I would like to see demos concentrating on how guitar sounds 'clean". I want to hear the guitar, not some distortion boxes. Maybe a bit of overdriven etc at the end, but like the ladies, I prefer them nekkid.

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You're never going to get standardization across all demos, but if the idea of a video is to compare two or more guitars/amps/FX boxes/whatever then there's really no point if you don't standardize everything else. Otherwise you're at best wasting the viewers time and at worst effectively lying to them

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Demos aren't the be all and end all. They are DEMONSTRATIONS. You shouldn't make a final decision based on them. Look for a couple different demos..clean, dirty, alone, in a song...read as many reviews as you can stand. And then-

 

make a logical decision for yourself. Don't blame the demo.

 

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Agreed but it doesn't alter the fact that for a demo to be really useful - a comparison type demo anyway - it has to remove as many variables as possible.

 

 

I do see your "a "comparison" type demo" statement. head to head? ...and I suppose that I can concur. I find those are very specialty-type comparisons and not really a "demo". For example, if I were trying to decide between an RP1000 and HD500 (I've done exactly that!), I would look for a comparison with the same test methods i.e. same guitar, same monitors, etc. ....but I would also look for the individual demos... moreso even.

 

 

but to expound further on "A DEMO".

 

The thing is there are all KINDS of variables- just in normal everyday use of stuff you already have. I'm a lab tech so I know the value of a good "standard". Hopefully, one has good metrology equipment and good calibration, etc. But in human testing, it can't be helped, even in a lab. And a good test should have something to do with real world experience...not so dry and sterile that it wouldn't even apply.

 

So these variable you speak of can actually be helpful, if you use more than one source. One guy might play all clean, another might play it acoustically and just talk about features (darkhorse this can be just as important as how it sounds and plays!)...another guy might demo it live on stage. You take all this in, process it...then arrive at a conclusion to either try it or not.

 

I wouldn't go by any one demo....good or bad--- standardized or not. The different variables allow me to have more information in the formula.

 

I'm not saying I agree with any old schlocky demo. One person was demoing a JMV( I think), playing along a full pre-recorded track- and calling it a Mesa killer. Or something- point being I told him I can't tell what was the actual amp and what was the the recording. Not a very good demo...but I just looked for other more helpful ones- with variables. {shrug}

 

 

 

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As others said, Cant be done by all manufacturers. Maybe one manufacturer could do a comparison, but you'd have to split the input and play the same part through the gear at the same time and multitrack them all the same way. For example, you wanted to compare 3 different amps. You split the guitar signal to all three amps and track all three amps with identical mics, identical settings, on identical cabs running identical settings and having the recording gear track with the same levels and leave the tracks untouched.

 

Then you can make an A/B/C comparison between the three and pick the one that sounds best to you.

 

You just have to remember, every playback system is going to make those tracks sound different, some better, some worse. A really good amp may sound tinny if the playback system has too much treble and another that lacks treble may sound fine. If an amp has too much bass for you're liking and the playback speakers lack bass response, then they might not produce the bass overkill.

 

You would need flat studio monitors for all comparisons to determine if the amp actually hase a good response before you compare that track to others.

 

That's only one of thousands of variables. To me a demo is completely worthless, especially if you're attempting to compare stuff between manufacturers. They will all try to make their recording look or sound better then the next guy to sucker someone into buying their gear.

 

Plus whose to say it was even that piece of gear being recorded? You may have a little champ in the video and the tracks were recorded of a twin at the same time, and the tracks were simply substituted in the video. Every recording is going to be recorded with different recording gear, and an amp may sound completely different with your guitar vs the one in the video, even if it is the same kind of guitar.

 

Lastly, All you would be hearing is what the mic hears. You don't hear the amps live tone as it reflects around a room which could be completely different. I just don't see demo type tracks being of any use at all other then to demonstrate the various functions. What you hear will be limited to your playback system unless its really high end you probably couldn't properly evaluate anything you hear.

 

 

Maybe if you had an audio analyzer connected to the gear and pumped the same audio test tones into each piece of gear you could tell the difference by what the analyzer being filmed reads, but you're still trusting the guy making the film to have good scientific skills testing the gear. Unless the guy is a good electronic tech, that's unlikely to happen.

Edited by WRGKMC
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Good comments. Just thought of the problem that some guitars sound amazing with certain amps and dog poop with others of different manufacture. Sooo many vairables.

 

Guitars can do that. Not every guitar sounds good in all amps. Tricky business! I always have trouble...do I find an amp that suits the guitar or guitar that fits the amp. Not always the case but you sometimes have that.

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Well...I didn't exactly see what you mean...I was taking your comment at face value. But I do see what I meant.

 

Here's what you do ... contact the demo factory and provide them your specifications and you can get exactly what you want to hear.

 

Better yet, contact one of the demo posters on YouTube and tell him "I don't like your amp (pedals, cables, choice of demo music, etc.)." Tell him you want him to borrow an (amp like yours) with (pedals like yours and your settings) so you can hear how the guitar is going to sound through your rig. Be sure to tell him what song you want to hear too and to dispense with the incessant noodling.

 

I am sure you have watched and listened to the demos by Greg's Guitars. They truly represent the character and capabilities of an instrument in capable hands. Not only is the guy a fabulous guitar player, his setup is perfect and consistent from demo to demo. Oh yeah, he plays a clean passage and a dirty or crunch passage for comparison.

Edited by 6down1togo
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I'm a firm believer that a great deal of tone is in the players' hands. We've all said it, "Give Jeff Beck/ Keith Richards/ Eric Johnson/ fill in the blank and they can make ANYTHING sound good." When I see a well meaning guy with beginners chops demo something it usually doesn't truly showcase the product. The person doing the demo doesn't have to be brilliant/flashy, we can tell if a guy playing a simple BB king lick has some experience…. or not. Experience also leads to knowing where to set knobs on amps/effects boxes. The demo has to be recorded well and the player has to show what can potentially be acquired from the piece of gear. That being said I've seen Joe Bonamassa demoing a Marshall combo and although Joe is awesome the amp didn't do it for me. Probably sounded great in the room , the mic or recording EQ ( or lack of) wasn't happening. Online demos are a crap shoot at best.

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