tribute PCB and caps.

Discussion in 'Tonefreaks' started by clintonior, Sep 21, 2017.

  1. clintonior

    clintonior Junior Member

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    Hello I'm new to the forum I have a 2017 Tribute T in Honey Burst. Like most of you I put emphasis on the tone.. was a bit meh when I looked in the cavity and saw the PCB with nice Gibson pots on it. well its grown on me some. I have 2 mil spec PIO 35v .022 mf and some great NOS Sprague black beauties .022mf 600v.. They will find their way in this its inevitable.. so having a look at the pcb I notice two little brown drops .022mf.. they look like tiny cheaper versions of orange drops (which aren't very expensive anyhow) they are about 3/8 wide going straight down into corresponding holes in the trace with very short leads, which is great. Now upon a second look on that same trace is another hole about 3/4 of an inch further down and unused this I would say is exact spacing for a Sprague Orange drop or vintage cap. It's my assumption they can use this board in both configurations mine just has nicer than ceramic caps but cheaper than orange drops.
    Can anyone confirm this is the same trace for multiple cap applications ?
    and can anyone confirm I have a polyester cap? (brown cap smaller than a Cornell Dublier)

    My hope is to remove the brown caps and use the two outer holes for my Black Beauties with nice short leads ( with Sprague cleary visible:)..got any tips?
     
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  2. ARandall

    ARandall Senior Member

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    I've not seen the pcb.....at least in person. But I would doubt that Gibson would be making any extra work just so people can substitute in other caps....even if that ends up being what you do.

    If you have some nice caps.....why not spend a small amount more and get pots as well. Although the specs state 500k, the range is 20% tolerance. Might be worth a look at some values to suit the positions they are located in.....plus you have the option to choose the taper as well.
    The changing of the caps only is likely not going to do much.......and you are stuck with whatever tone control scheme the PCB comes with.
     
  3. cooljuk

    cooljuk Transducer Producer Premium Member MLP Vendor

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    Post a couple clear photos of the board. You might be right, as Gibson has used several types of caps on PCBs.

    Regarding your Black Beauties, I'd bet they don't actually read .022uF, anymore. Have you actually put them on a meter or are you going by the writing on the case? They don't hold up well over time. You will definitely want to meter them before you install them, otherwise you might be installing .05MFD caps and end up with a muddy guitar, especially if you are not also changing to 50's style wiring or some other means of brightening up the stock circuit.
     
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  4. clintonior

    clintonior Junior Member

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    cap values.jpg cap test .00257.jpg black beauties.jpg my guitar gently weeps.jpg I'll take some tonight. I'm having my Caps capacitance tested here at work today.. if they have drifted a little I wont be to concerned, I'm Hopeful..

    The black beauites are in spec just not the right spec, they are .0022 (.00257 tested) so those wont work. I also have some NOS VitaminQ .022 100v (.0215 tested) so I guess ill have to sell these Black Beauties to someone who needs .0022 . Pics of the PCB in a bit..
     
    Last edited: Sep 22, 2017
  5. cooljuk

    cooljuk Transducer Producer Premium Member MLP Vendor

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    That is a NICE meter! I've done some professional training through Sencore and they make some amazing gadgets!

    The Vitamin Q's - and really most any sealed mil spec caps from that time, hold up much better than the plastic cased ones. I have more faith in those.
     
  6. clintonior

    clintonior Junior Member

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  7. clintonior

    clintonior Junior Member

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  8. cooljuk

    cooljuk Transducer Producer Premium Member MLP Vendor

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    Looks like the trace does connect those two points.

    You can't harm anything by trying it, even if it's not connected. There's not enough voltage in that cavity to harm the caps, pots, pickups, etc. and a dead short on the amp input is simply a mute.

    You'll still have a "modern wiring" circuit and the stock taper pots, in there. So, be sure you like those since you'll be pulling all the controls out of the guitar to do your cap mod, anyway. If you can solder, it's only a few bucks more to put in the pots of your choice and wire up the circuit of your choice and you'll have already don't half the work. Just a thought.
     
  9. spitfire

    spitfire Senior Member

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    I can't really see what the traces are doing in the photo. Though it does look like that trace from the cap forms a T where that extra hole is. Whether that holes is there to accommodate a larger cap or is just a via to traces on the side, I don't know. Doesn't matter anyway. Though if the new cap won't fit in that hole DO NOT drill the hole out to make it bigger.

    There's also no reason you can't use the holes for the smaller cap. At these frequencies the length of the cap leads does not matter. Maybe, just maybe, a little longer lead would allow in a little bit more AC hum, but you've got a pickup with about 1/2 mile of wire in it, another 1" on the cap isn't going to matter (an yes I know it's not quite the same thing).

    Also, I see no reason you can't remove and install the caps without pulling the PCB and controls out. Though it sure would be easier. Just depends on whether you can get your soldering iron tip on the pads. But, I, for one, prefer to solder as far away from the guitar as possible. Just be sure to cover guitar with towels or similar so you don't damage the finish with the soldering iron, flux splatter etc.

    While there is no reason not to change whatever you want to change, don't expect dramatic changes (assuming the caps in there are the same 0.022 uF value). It's very debatable whether any of these cap changes actually make a difference. As far as I know, no one has presented any evidence it matters beyond what they say they hear. There's virtually no engineering theory to support that it should matter. But again, we do all kinds of things just becasue we want, so doesn't matter if you just want to try. Just don't don't go through a lot of trouble believing it's going to make a big change.
     
  10. ARandall

    ARandall Senior Member

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    I have put some .001's in my guitars.....as well as .047's and .1's.

    I find the arbitary use of .022 as some seemingly magical value is a bit far-fetched. You should be experimenting.....neck pickups are especially where 'way out of normal spec' values can be better to a good proportion of users.

    And if you don't feel like you can deal with a number being incorrect....I'd be happy to take them off your hands.
     
  11. clintonior

    clintonior Junior Member

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    Well yes the .022 seems to be the gibson spec..the Black beauty's I have are .0022 which is about a 100th or so off spec..but yeah they might sound good I tend to dime the tone anyways 95% of the time..
     
  12. clintonior

    clintonior Junior Member

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    There's a clear hole in that trace just about a half inch further..I'm only guessing but there might be another model using this same pcb with orange drops in the two outer most holes.. basically what it looks to be..
     
  13. clintonior

    clintonior Junior Member

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    IMG_20170923_202109.jpg after some continuity testing the holes are cap holes..and there in and functional.. now to Noodle around with tone..
     
  14. yamariv

    yamariv Senior Member

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    Pretty cool bother that you did this! Can't wait for you update on the difference in sound or if you notice anything
     
  15. clintonior

    clintonior Junior Member

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    I've been playing quite abit. Noticable tone difference..the pulse from the Vitamin Q's is really noticeable for me as the note sustains and decay's.. Very musical I like this upgrade..
     
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  16. Leña_Costoso

    Leña_Costoso Senior Member

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    They do it to accommodate various sizes of components that may, or may not be available as part of their production. More likely, Gibson probably outsources those boards as assemblies, and the maker of the boards does that to cover THEIR butts, depending on part availability, or Gibson's changing spec, without having to mess with or retool a board.
     
  17. Matt_Krush

    Matt_Krush Senior Member

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    .047 is what I put in all my guitars...that still have a tone control.
     
  18. clintonior

    clintonior Junior Member

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    Glad they did was much easier than trying to fit em in the smaller form factor cap holes..
     
  19. Leña_Costoso

    Leña_Costoso Senior Member

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    I'm going to have to do the "cut the trace" trick, and rewire the traces to get independent volume control and 50s tone control. It should be interesting!
     
  20. cooljuk

    cooljuk Transducer Producer Premium Member MLP Vendor

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    Why not just build a new harness with the pots values, pot tapers, pot brands, cap values, cap types, cap brands, and any wiring configuration of your choice?
     
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