500k Pots Volume and tone

Discussion in 'Tonefreaks' started by ozone, Mar 25, 2008.

  1. jonesy

    jonesy GLOBAL WIRING GURU MLP Vendor

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    You have to remember there are some humbuckers out there 12-15 ohms or more and those pickups have a lot of windings. A lot of times more windings will make the pickup sound darker depending on magnets etc.

    I have a 1 Meg/500K wiring harness listed in the Business section, and a couple of guys have been interested in it. One has a JB pickup he thought was 15 ohms, with 500K's that pickup is slightly compressed and may even be muddy at times.

    With the 1 Meg rig that pickup would be wide open, clear punchy and probably be screaming like a demon though a Marshall :dude:

    example #2 Fender suggests 1 Meg Pots for their Vintage Noiseless pickups or they tend to be muddy sounding. I know this for a fact, had one in the neck of my Strat with 250ks and it was to dark and was missing the highs and mids. :hmm:

    What works for you does not always work in a dozen other guitars Bro:hmm:

    Peace, jonesy
     
  2. eddie_bowers

    eddie_bowers Senior Member

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    Your electrical engineer sounds a bit pretentious. I have a degree in electrical engineering as well (although that’s not my profession anymore) but I call it a Treble Bleed because that is a more appropriate and specific term. Yeah it's an RC network, but that is like calling a fire hose a water conduit.
     
  3. jonesy

    jonesy GLOBAL WIRING GURU MLP Vendor

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    You Know How Them College Boyz Can be..Lol :applause:
     
  4. LPGEM

    LPGEM Senior Member

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    Hello Mr Jonesy, I saw your post stating that 250 k pots are sweet for p90's. What are the pots normally used with Gibson p90's? Mahogany/Maple cap. And would they be different for an all mahogany Git?(just curious, I don't own one) I have 1996 not vintage if it makes a difference. Please bare with me as I'm new to the tech stuff. I think I know good tone though:cool:

    I'm happy with the tone, through the right amp of course but I'm interested in Caps that won't change the tone of the Guitar just broaden the sweep. I have stock ceramic discs. They are only usable on 6-7 to 10 as I'm sure you know. What would you recommend? Would orange drops get me close to as good as it gets? Or would the extra loot for some of the aforementioned caps make that much of a difference?

    I have a sneaking suspicion that my p-90 equipped Studio Gem comes stock with 250k Pot's.. It is Heavenly and Powerful. I have a few different settings on each Pup and them blended that I'm happy with. If I could retain them and have more sounds available I'd be more than happy.

    And you're right God Rocks and more:band:

    Thanks for your time.

    Anyone else with helpful hints, feel free to chime in. Or if you just want to bash my Greenhorns:laugh2:
     
  5. richedie

    richedie Senior Member

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    I hear ya Jonesey!

    Most of my pickups are 12-15k and one is 19k(PRS Dragon) with a 495k volume pot - that guitar can be bright even with this volume pot.

    Even with 300k volumes on the 12-15k pickups, I still have more than enough treble, I still can't make full use of the amp's reble and presence controls. Doesn't that indicate anything?:thumb:
     
  6. jonesy

    jonesy GLOBAL WIRING GURU MLP Vendor

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    No Doubt we all have our own way of "Dialing in" an amp...when you say can't make full use of your treble controls on your amp, I hope it is not on 10?

    I normally start out with my bass mid & treble controls around 7, and then back off the mids etc to get what I need depending on the guitar I am using.

    Considering the Human is supposed to be able to hear 20HZ-20,000 HZ
    Your main freq. for guitar is around 1-10k with 4k being the heart of it.
    Tight punchy crisp mids are kinda sorta trade-mark for LP?

    If your guitar sounds to bright, Maybe just Roll off the Tone Control a bit, after all that is what it is for :naughty:
     
  7. jonesy

    jonesy GLOBAL WIRING GURU MLP Vendor

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    Greetings, nice Post and Welcome to the MLPF...BTW I bash all members equally..Newbies or Seniors...Lol :laugh2:

    I think originally the Jr's with P-90's may of have had 250K pots, seems like B-Squared followed one of my Posts on a thread about P-90's and said his 67' had 250K?
    Congrats B on your new Moderator Position!!!

    My Favorite set-up for a P-90 is 250K Pots(linear if you want to) and a .047 Bumble Bee Cap, some guys would say it is to Dark, but if you don't Roll it off to much you will get this Sweet Warm, Mid Vocal Tone that you won't find in the OD caps, the NOS PIO will come closer to a vintage Bee, but not exact.

    IMO the .047 will Produce a Thicker Mid EQ, even when not rolled back much..of Course I do like My Tele's :naughty:

    NOTE TO ALL TONE FREAKS: I really think you can only do so much talking and discussion about your caps and Tone. If you were attending a class on swimming at some point you have to jump in the water and start swimming.

    By tinkering with your own wiring and trying different Caps and Pots you will Hear/See what works..or does not work for you. Even the guys with little knowledge or experience will find that this is not rocket science??

    Peace, jonesy
     
  8. Splattle101

    Splattle101 V.I.P. Member

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    I like 500 k pots, tone and volume, humbucker and P-90. I find it gives me a useful range of overdriven tones driving the amp hard. I don't use a lot of front-end gain (i.e., master volume, pedals, etc), but instead push the amp. This tends to filter some top end anyway, so I have no problem with excessive brightness. I particularly like my neck pick up bright for soloing.

    As a rule I would rather keep the tone turned down most of the time but have the top end available if I want it, than not have the top end on demand when I do want it. On a related note, I also use the '10' position on the tone control to take up more space when I don't want to increase volume. This can have a dramatic impact when the volume is down.

    I suppose I aim for a wide range of dirty sounds, and 500 k suits me for that.

    Splat
     
  9. jack briggs

    jack briggs Senior Member

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    All of my guitars get 500K volume and 250K tone controls. Works best to my ears. All pots should be audio taper.

    I like .022 caps for bridge humbuckers and .015 for neck humbuckers. Single coils I might use .033, but usually .022 as well. NOS Vitamin Q;s sound best to me, but Hovlands are quite nice, too. '50's wiring is the trick to keeping clarity in any circumstance.

    YMMV.



    Cheers,
     
  10. richedie

    richedie Senior Member

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    What is a NOS PIO? I can't hear much difference with vit Qs, Hovlands, ODs, etc.
     
  11. richedie

    richedie Senior Member

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    Okay, I just rewired my 1994 LP with Wolfetone pickups - 15K bridge and I thikn the neck is like 8K, wired it up with 500Ks all around and like it! I can still get all the thickness I need between the amp and/or tone control.

    I also use a bleed circuit from the middle to bottom lug(where the cap is connected) and love it. However, now I am having an issue. I just swapped the toggle and pickup lead to give me independent volumes and now my treble bleed circuit does not seem as effective.:hmm: Seems like plain old wiring now with no bleed circuit! Do I need to move the cap when I swap the wires for independent volumes?:shock:

    Sorry to change the subject but I also have a 1989 SG with two volumes and a shared tone. Is it possible to make the volumes on this configuration independent? Thanks!
    Funny, on this guitar, the volume roll off is great and clear all the way down! Did Gibson get it right on this one!?:)
     
  12. richedie

    richedie Senior Member

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    Some recent experiments. First, I never roll off the tone in the neck position so I keep that with a cheap,
    polyester Orange Drop cap. In the bridge I couldn't detect any difference between the $1.00 polypropylene Orange Drop
    and the $25.00 Sprague Vitamin Q. The Vit. Q had somewhat of a wah sound as you rolled off but I notioce no difference in clarity.

    I also replaced the 300k pots in my black LP to 500ks in the bridge to match the neck. The bridge volume is 530K(the only others I had were under 500k). My other available pots were all around 460-495k. Not sure I would hear much difference anyway, ya know? Bridge tone is 503k. The bridge position is definitiely brighter now! I can't get the treble much beyond 1:00 now and tend to keep the tone knob on 7. Oddly though when I played in a band I always found myself looking for more on the tone knob and that was with 500ks! So, the real
    test will be with other musicians and instruments. Then, that was a particularly dark amp where I also was lookingf or treble at the amp. So, now this LP has BV - 530k and BT - 503K. Before the switch is was 460K and 503K. The pickups are Wolfetone Timbrewolf - 15k and Marshallhead - 8k.
    I can't imagine a 1 meg pot! Wow, must be ear piercing bright! I wish even with 500k volume pots, there was a way to darken it enough to simulate a 300k volume pot.

    I am also learning that I think I prefer the treble bleed. Without the bleed, the volume knob is just a volume knob, where I prefer it to be a gain control and this is much more the case when you have a treble bleed involved. You can always darken it up with the tone to get what you would normally get with a standard wiring set up.

    Anyone know how to make the neck tone a no load tone so it is brighter and clearer.
    Here is another question if you all don't mind. My PRS CE-22 has a 19k Dragon bridge pickup with a volume pot that is 475k and it is shared with the 8.5k neck pickup. Playing the guitar live, it is always my brightest guitaer, so how could I ever use a 1 meg pot in this guitar even though that is recommended for over 15k?

    Interesting my SG has two 300k volumes and it sounds great! Weird though....

    Jonesey, since you think some pickup can use the 1meg/500k treatment, I would think you would suggest the 500k/300k treatment for vintage humbuckers?

    Finally, Hamer uses a special pot with a special taper and specific value, I think about 460K. Guys swear by these.
     
  13. Texas07R8

    Texas07R8 Senior Member

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    Jonesy, I've got an order for some caps from you pending. Thanks again for your service..

    Also, regarding the JP wiring with push pull, phasing and coil splitting makes me think about the impedance of the pot, I know that we want a nice 500k audio taper pot on a humbucker but what happens when we split those coils? The single coil is now going through a 500k pot? Or does the impedance change to 250k to match the load of the single coil? If not, is it an issue or no?


    Also, I've got a Gibson Flying V (67 reissue type) that I want to rewire, it has three short Gibson pots, what's the best setup for it pots and caps wise, do you have diagrams for that?

    Not only that, I've got an 87 Gibson Les Paul Custom Lite that has the 59 reissue pups in it from the factory, the bridge pup has two braided wires (split Coil) and instead of a bridge tone pot it's got a factory two position toggle switch to toggle in and out of dual or single coil. The neck pickup is a single two conductor lead. It's not real quiet when I switch it over to split coils and I'd like it to be a little fuller, seems like the overall volume drops a lot compared to both coils. I guess that's understandable but is there some way to address that electronically? I don't think I can convert the Custom Lite to push pull (ah la JP style) as it's a thin body Les Paul and it isn't deep enough for long pots.


    thanks!
     
  14. Texas07R8

    Texas07R8 Senior Member

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    NOS= New Original Stock means old stock that is still new in most instances.

    PIO= Paper In Oil this is old school caps.
     
  15. jonesy

    jonesy GLOBAL WIRING GURU MLP Vendor

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    Peace, jonesy
     
  16. richedie

    richedie Senior Member

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    I did a test recently between the polyester orange drops and the polypropylene orange drops and heard no difference! I hear dthe polyprops were warmer and smoother. To my ears, no way! Identical.:thumb:
     
  17. Texas07R8

    Texas07R8 Senior Member

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    Hey Jonesy,

    Hoping those caps arrive today (Friday) probably delayed a bit due to the holiday this week.

    Anyway, regarding the Flying V, it's the cluster (67 style) not inline like the 58s.
    I could use some good advise on improving the tone on it. Here's a pic of the Flying V:

    [​IMG]

    About the Les Paul Custom Lite, yes, it's very unusual. Here's a pic of the innards:

    [​IMG]

    Here's the 59 reissue pickups, note the dual braided wire from the bridge pup. That's factory Gibson....

    [​IMG]

    Here's the top showing the factory coil tap switch:

    [​IMG]

    Thanks for any advise you can offer. We may have to talk about those short pots, do you have any pics of them, I mean the shorties that are push-pull.
     
  18. jonesy

    jonesy GLOBAL WIRING GURU MLP Vendor

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    Hey maybe you can email those pics to me at jonesyblues@yahoo.com
    they did not show up in your post? Feel free to call me at 1-574-806-4118

    Peace, jonesy
     
  19. jonesy

    jonesy GLOBAL WIRING GURU MLP Vendor

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    Peace, jonesy
     
  20. Texas07R8

    Texas07R8 Senior Member

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    Hey Jonesy, got the caps in today, thanks, they arrived quite safely. I'll holler at you off line regarding the V and the Custom.
     

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