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I have a Fender Amp Mustang III. I'm using Fender FUSE which is a software that lets you change the amp settings and add pedals. If any of you could help find this clean overdrive I'd highly appreciate it. This is the song I'm trying to play, looking for the lead guitar sound: "Naruto Shippuden Opening 8":

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    There's nothing clean about those guitars. You just want "overdrive". – Todd Wilcox Jul 30 '18 at 5:13
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    Maybe add link to the song? – coconochao Jul 30 '18 at 12:57
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You would be surprised how little gain you need to achieve a distorted/overdriven tone. Even having the gain knob around 3/4 will probably do, if you have your other settings complimenting the gain (ie for goodness' sake DO NOT SCOOP YOUR MIDS).

A compressor would also help you get all your notes the same volume, and with the correct settings on your compressor it can act a little like a noise reduction filter to stop some of the ambient hissing that comes from having your gain too high.

The main trick to clean distortion/overdrive though, is to play precisely and cleanly. There is no point in trying to play with distortion if you can't accurately play the piece; it will just sound muddy and messy. Learn the piece as accurately as you can, and your overdrive will come across as cleaner naturally as you will not be messing up the parts and hitting dead/unwanted notes.

I don't have your particular set up so can't find exactly what amp settings you need, and without knowing your guitar, it would only be an educated guess anyway as your strings/pickups/etc will also have an impact. With my above advice though, experiment! Getting to know your amp and how your own settings sound for yourself is invaluable. Messing around and finding sounds that you like is worth much more than just being told how to achieve one specific tone without the exploration it took to find it.

There is quite an interesting thread on Reddit about this "anime guitar tone", but for a TL;DR, here's what I can gather (and what makes sense to me) can get you closest to the typical anime guitar sound:

  • Guitar with humbucker pickups in bridge position
  • Overdrive with compressor prominent in the mix
  • Probably a Marshall or Marshall-like amp
  • Go for a metal tone, then raise the mids and slightly lower the low-end

That's not to say that you need a Les Paul with a Marshall stack to achieve this tone - that's just one way to get it. All decent amp/guitar combos have the potential to sound great if the settings are right.

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