Changing a capacitor - what does it actualy do to the sound?

Discussion in 'Tonefreaks' started by Doctor Dread, Jan 14, 2008.

  1. overdriver

    overdriver Banned

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    Me too! I go as far as orange drops IMO they look Cool. And do not sting me in the wallet.Like the bumble bees.
     
  2. taypeng

    taypeng Senior Member

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    :wave:hey just to chip in my 2cents worth, i swapped my ceramic caps for russian PIOs. I can't say for sure what it does to the tone since i changed the pups at the same time.

    But i can safely say, if you're planning to make the switch, you should consider wiring it the vintage way. There's significant treble loss when i turn the gain knob down now. I didn't have that with ceramic caps.
     
  3. mrkenny

    mrkenny Senior Member

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    I'm sort of a, less is more kid of guy. I have a 50's Harmony Stratotone to which I've added a second DeArmond pickup. I decided on a selector switch and volume, no tone controls. It was an interesting exercise that turned out fine in the end. There's something cool about having a guitar that just has one knob. :naughty:
     
  4. eddie_bowers

    eddie_bowers Senior Member

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    You can make your own "No Load" pots. I did it for my neck pickup tone control. It's easy, just follow the steps at:
    Project Guitar :: Checking DC resistance on your potentiometers
    It works perfectly. I didn't do it on my bridge because it sounds harsh as it is.
    I was worried that you might hear a pop or something when it goes to 10, but you don't.
    I don't think this works for volume controls because the signal side of the pot would have no connection. I just used 1 Meg pots for volume.

    -Eddie
     
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  5. LES STORY

    LES STORY Member

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    Hey What Do You Guys Think Of The Mojo Djoun And Vitamin T Caps .
     
  6. noslen1968

    noslen1968 Senior Member

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  7. essguitarman

    essguitarman Senior Member

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    I recently found that somewhat of a treble bleed mod sounds great on my lp standard. I connected the first and second lug on the volume pot together with a sprague .001uf cap and a 90k carbon composition resistor. I did his to each volume pot. I also wired in a momentary kill switch for the neck pickup. I'm also thinking of putting in vitamin Q caps...any opinions?
     
  8. JustinMcCorkle

    JustinMcCorkle Senior Member

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    I have a set of Filmores in a guitar I play a lot. I got the whole kit from Wagner, pickups, pots, caps, the works. I installed the pickups first, then plugged it in and played it. I thought killer man this thing really got a lot better instantly. I then took the old pots and caps out and put Wagner's pots and caps in. I sat there for a minute thinking I cannot friggin believe this. It made ALL the difference in the world. It REALLY brought those pickups to life. Of course the pots and caps in it were crap to begin with. That was my first time installing pots and caps, now I do it to all of them. WCR has a GREAT line of pickups. Wagner has NAILED every application I've needed so far. A great guy, and extremely talented. I highly suggest if you get them to get his prewired pot and cap kit. It's worth every penny! :thumb:
     
  9. weirdotis

    weirdotis Senior Member

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    Why would you buy one cap over another? Like Vitamin Qs over Bumblebees, or vice versa.
     
  10. xsouldriverx

    xsouldriverx V.I.P. Member

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    i changed gibsons stock pots and .022 caps to an rs kit with .015 PIO caps and it made a dark, almost unplayable guitar into a nice rock machine.IMHO they make a difference.
     
  11. Liam

    Liam V.I.P. Member

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    Because they all sound quite different. Not just when you've rolled the tone control off (although differences get bigger when you do), but even with the tone control on full. But you really have to experiment to see what you like...
     
  12. Davey Rockets

    Davey Rockets Senior Member

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    I think it's a matter of what you like best.. kinda like, which strings are best for you?

    I had some paper in oil caps that just didn't do it for me. I got some Orange Drops, and they DID do it for.

    the next guy to post might tell you the exact opposite, it's a matter of what your ears like. My ears like Orange Drops. ;)
     
  13. .Jamison

    .Jamison Member

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    HELL YA! I took the tone knob outta my les paul and it sounds so much better! :thumb: I even took out the neck pickup and all i have now is a single volume knob and a killswitch! SO MUCH BETTER! although the caps i was using were made in a sweatshop sometime in 1967 along with the guitar which is a lawsuit copy
     
  14. ToneQuest75

    ToneQuest75 Member

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    I don't like Orange Drops at all, at least not in the guitar I have tried them in (Tokai P90 GT). They sounded harsh and anaemic to me. I removed them and put the stock caps back in (Green Mylar chiclets) and the overall tone was instantly vastly better. Much warmer, smoother just magical and the tone was back. In my limited experience of Orange Drop caps, they are the surest way to kill the tone of a guitar. Listen to what your ears are telling you, not the hype. I may at some point try some PIO in this guitar, but at present I am more than happy with it.
     
  15. ToneQuest75

    ToneQuest75 Member

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    I agree. I don't know why or how they do, but they do. I am absolutely certain of that, and nobody will ever convince me anything different. Even different types of caps with the same values sound different, so it's clear to me that the materials used in them DOES influence the tone.
     
  16. David Collins

    David Collins Senior Member

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    Bringing back a zombie thread, but what the heck. ;)

    Where are you located at? Chances are probably slim that you're anywhere near Michigan, but I would love for you to be able to participate in a survey I've been working on. I'm sure I could find some orange drops of matched value to a PIO or other cap to test.
     
  17. NovaSDF

    NovaSDF Senior Member

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    Actually, there's a 3rd option. You could install a "No Load" pot. With a no load pot, it acts as if it's not there when you have it cranked all the way up.

    Of, if you want, you can modify any pot to be no load. Here's a YouTube video showing how:
    [ame=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dN3SlH-cEAg]Guitar Potentiometers part 4, Modifying a Tone Pot to be No Load for True Bypass - YouTube[/ame]
     
  18. Bigneil

    Bigneil Senior Member

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    I couldn't tell the difference between the material types :shock:
    [ame=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=92G-jw4TqS4]Guitar Tone Capacitors, part 1: Evaluating Material Types - YouTube[/ame]

    but you can hear a difference in the capacitance value .. this one has some great info on how tone circuits work.
    [ame=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rR4maqK_IhQ&feature=fvwrel]Guitar Tone Capacitors, part 2: How Tone Works, Selecting a Value - YouTube[/ame]
     
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  19. guitarver

    guitarver Junior Member

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    I think its amazing though, what your pickups actually sound like when the controls are out of the equation. Its like a different world. If they could make a set of pots that were full bypass when you turned them up to 10, I'd be interested... Either that or some nifty wiring trick... Hmmm.[/QUOTE]

    Ya turn it into another tonal option rather than a dedication. You'd get pure pickup but with the right caps you can get fantastic options with a smooth and well built pot and the right caps on the tone.

    Out of phase between neck and bridge really adds to the value of good pots on both volume and tone. A plethora of different tones become available from thin to fat, muddy, wah like as the other fellow mentioned, to crystalline and DIFFERENT period from in phase combinations. The both pickup option with great pots, caps and pickups is a wonderful thing to monkey with and explore through a punchy and nuanced tube amp.

    I'm currently using WMF .22uf 400V vintage CDE caps.... huge barrel like caps that work fantastic and give me all the options I could want. Bumblebee's are pretty hard to argue with as well and will give you many recognizable sounds once you start rolling the pots back. They really only come into play tonally when you roll the pot back. But the sound possibilities are like a lottery in terms of the combinations of tweaks possible. CTS pots are pretty much industry standard quality pots. Expensive but worth it.

    Others may have other ideas. You may want to try a treble bleed option too which gives you some more tonal control or just roll with the original combo :)

    http://robrobinette.com/images/Guitar/kinman_treble_bleed.png
     
  20. johnh

    johnh Senior Member

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    deleted - tried to post a link but couldnt
     

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