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Guitar Voltage


a.blue.wave.of.bass
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Hi, I got a really good idea for a custom guitar but it needs a crucial piece of information. I need to know how much voltage a guitar puts out as it leaves the jack. The hottest pickup (though it's measured in ohms, I know, so maybe it's irrelevant) is a Gibson super ceramic 500T The others are a Fender TexMex and a Fender hot noiseless. I really don't know much about how electronics work, just how to wire it, outside of grounding wires run a current and leads transfer "information."

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Since the guitar's signal decays rapidly and exponentially from the pick attack, you could easily both be right, and simply talking about attack peaks versus nominal sustained levels. FWIW, F/X wiz Zachary Vex says he tweaks his circuits using a 200mV P-P signal generator, which still sounds a little hot to me, but it's hard to argue with genius! :D

For reference, consumer line level (post-preamp) is only ~2V P-P max (@600 ohms). Any particular reason why the voltages are important?

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I really don't know much about how electronics work, just how to wire it, outside of grounding wires run a current and leads transfer "information."

There are lots of very helpful and experienced people here who could point you in the right direction. Please don't be offended but that last line has me thinking your project might benefit from a little more help than the answer to this quesiton. Electronics can be tricky in that you can spend months going down the wrong road without even knowing it. The old saying "I know just enough to be dangerous" applies. Just trying to help.

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I guess I should have been more clear - 1 to 1.2V maximum peak to peak voltage. This would be immediately after hitting a good and strong E chord. 500mV is more like an averaged output, AFAIK. :D

EDIT: Check out this little article - http://www.muzique.com/lab/pick.htm :D

Edited by Paul Marossy
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OK, IIRC, the convention is as follows - peak to peak is twice the peak positive amplitude (for a sine wave), while rms is .707*peak positive amplitude (again, for a sine wave). Or , to make it simple, 1 V P-P is 500mV P, or 353.5Vrms.

That Jack Orman article Paul linked to should make evrrything pretty clear. If we had some idea what you were trying to do, it would be a lot easier to address your question.

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I'm planning on putting a voltmeter in the guitar (non-digital) so that when a note is played the dial moves, but I'm wondering if that is possible. I am under the impression that the variation in frequency put out by the amp is transferred through the cord by varying voltage, since the pickups work by fluctuations in the electromagnetic signals in the strings, so would this work, or would the dial just stay peaked as long as the guitar is plugged in (I don't have a preamp). Would it work?

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