Pots for Historics?

Mark1406

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Naturally Maverick you don't want to desolder the pots if you don't have to and it does require a pretty hefty iron to do the job. The best option is to measure the tone controls. The tone cap blocks the DC current of the multimeter and will allow you to take accurate measurement. You put the black multimeter lead on the earth bar and the red lead on the terminal where the tone cap attaches to the tone pot.

So Maverick can you measure the resistance and taper of the Crazy Parts TVT pots?
 

AllmanBurst

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For New Pots , after trying a few different types . Crazy Parts, TVT are the 1's . For me the 550K pots are to bright for my liking . If you like that , go for them . Nothing wrong with them . :thumb:

If you want some RS Super pots (never used) I'll sell you some at a nice Discount . I have 5 I'm not going to use . PM me . :hmm:

do you know if there is a difference b/w the crazy parts TVT and the retrospec TVT?
 

Quill

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Hey Mark - so I'm getting that you aren't crazy about the Dr. V. pots? I have them in my guitar, too ... I don't mind the taper on the volumes but the taper on the tone pots doesn't quite suit me, either - and I've always found them quite stiff.

I had a nice PRS for a while - one of the things I really loved about that guitar was the pots. Very very loose, and the best taper for playing live I've ever encountered.

The Allessandro-spec'd PEC pots used to seem really expensive, but at the prices some of the other vendors have been charging ... they seem kind of less outrageous now ... :shock:

Jamman if you are still reading, i didn't know you liked the TVTs, that's an endorsement that works for me. How do you find the turning tension on those? I'm curious about the Crazy Parts vs. Retrospec question as well.
 

maverick08

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Naturally Maverick you don't want to desolder the pots if you don't have to and it does require a pretty hefty iron to do the job. The best option is to measure the tone controls. The tone cap blocks the DC current of the multimeter and will allow you to take accurate measurement. You put the black multimeter lead on the earth bar and the red lead on the terminal where the tone cap attaches to the tone pot.

So Maverick can you measure the resistance and taper of the Crazy Parts TVT pots?


I don't use TVTs as tone pots. I find they work quite well as volumes, but the standard CTS 10% audio taper pots have a better sweep as tone controls.

The TVT pots I have, I remember measuring between 460 - 500K with a 25-30% taper. I also remember reading somewhere that a lot of them seem to have resistances below 500k.

Here's a nice chart I found elsewhere that highlights the taper differences.




I assumed the crazyparts and retrospec ones were identical...not 100% sure though.
 

jamman

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do you know if there is a difference b/w the crazy parts TVT and the retrospec TVT?

I haven't tried or even seen the Retrospoec TVT pots , so i'm not 100% sure But i think they are also from Crazy Parts . Crazy Parts is the Store that makes them and than sells to everyone else , If I understand correctly . Look at the pots and they all have a CP stamped on them .
Corsa Guitars sells them, CV guitars.

I have to look to see at what i used for tone pots in the guitar with the TVT's . I don 't recall at all :lol: I have older RS / CTS 500K tone pots fron a few years ago which read in the low 5's , so those are fine . IIRC from 2009/10

Anyone try Bourns 500K pots ? those are sopposed to be very good also
 

Mark1406

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Hi Quill you are dead on the money. The DR V pots work well enough, but I don't like them as tone pots, the 25 to 30% taper is a disaster. I find the guitar sounds pretty similar with the pot set to "3" as would if it were set to "10". I find there is no change in tone from "1" to "0", that is a pretty narrow band to adjust treble roll off.

The PRS pot has a very fast and responsive feel to it. $28 a pot is a bit steep though.

The "TVT" pot isn't for me if it has a 25% taper, and considering a guy with a 59 Les Paul says his Centralab pots have a 10% taper I wonder what prompted them to go for the 25% taper if it wasn't Historically accurate. There is a whole new bag of worms!

I'll have a look at the taper in my PRS and report back on the taper of that pot.
 

korus

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ANYTHING other than regular audio/log/logarithmic taper 10/90 fro tone pots is ... not a very wise choice. It just narrows the usable range of the pot.

Custom audio taper pots(20/80,25/75,30/70) for electric guitar were invented/created in order to avoid shortcomings of both linear pots (nothing happens till 3) and regular audio 10/90 pots (bellow 7 there's no signal) when used as VOLUME pots in a electric guitar with passive electric circuit - a kind of a compromise or 'middle ground' for these two 'extremes'. This has nothing to do with any historic accuracy. It is commonly known as progress - using something that is better suited for the purpose.

However, some are not able to grasp how these simple circuits and components work, some are just unable to hear the difference and some are both. These will follow the gospel(s) - some of them being designed on and for the Internet with obvious market implications and some of them 'gospels' just plain wrong/stupid - both being the price to pay for 'the first functional anarchy' in human race history that Internet actually is.

My LPs have RS Superpots in 525k-545k range for VOLUME pots and regular CTS audio pots in 470k-500k range for TONE pots, wired '50s way. They are used with Fender Deluxe Reverb and rather bright (low capacitance) guitar cables. They also have also rather bright PAF type pickups (mismatched coils, bright A2s) and proper combination of materials for hardware (like on 2013 Rxs). I hear highs just fine if not way above average - I just like my Rx LPs to sound like when they were first invented - Tele on steroids is a pretty common description nowadays. And anyone else's preference may and should differ.
 

Mark1406

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Thanks for the reply Korus. I agree with you about the tone pots needing to have a 10% taper, but an amp with a bit of gain (Trainwreck Express and Caswell modded Marshall) the 20% and 30% may not offer the change in volume required. I'm sure it would work with a Fender Deluxe Reverb quite well, as they don't have the gain of the fore mentioned amps.

The post below talks about such issues and Glen Kuykendall mentions how the 10% taper allows him to get clean tones from an Express. As a guy who's going to build an Trainwreck Express taper is of interest to me.

The Amp Garage :: View topic - Gibson Historic potentiometer....

My current amp set up is an 18 watter and a Boss DS-1 with the Keeley mod. I use the DS-1 as it pushes the first triode into clipping. I was turning the amp up and using the volume control, however the 30% taper of the volume pot was quite cumbersome to turn, thus I opted for the DS-1 to give me what I want when I want it.

This clip demonstrates the clean/dirty thing quite well.

[ame=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TZB8rRBOQ0U]1957 Gibson Les Paul Gold Top - YouTube[/ame]

Your pickups sound similar in construction to my Timbuckers, what pickups are you using, I've heard the Tele on steroids description applied to Gibson Custombuckers.
 

RAG7890

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Just out of interest has anyone tried / used Allesandro Pots?

They are dear as poison & I have never heard of anyone using & commenting on these....................maybe due to price.

Alessandro High-End Products

:cheers:
 

MATTM

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do you know if there is a difference b/w the crazy parts TVT and the retrospec TVT?

They are the same. Crazy Parts had them done. We had them for a very short trial period and I was less than impressed. The feedback we've gotten from many vintage camp folks is that the CTS550K series is the closet to the old Centralabs in taper.
 

jamman

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Jamman if you are still reading, i didn't know you liked the TVTs, that's an endorsement that works for me. How do you find the turning tension on those? I'm curious about the Crazy Parts vs. Retrospec question as well.

Hey Quill , I didn't see this part of you post untill now . I have no problem with the TVT pots tension. I don't even concern myself on how much force is needed to turn the any of them . I don't have any trouble with that . And as Matt posted they are the same pots . I like the TVT for the lower K#'s . It's a personal thing . I tried Matts pots and they are fine , turn easy . If you like a brighter Pot , they are worth getting .
 

Mark1406

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As mentioned in previous posts, I would be measuring the pot in my PRS.

The pot in my guitar is a replacement from PRS as the original one developed a crackle.

I had a brief look at the original pot, it measured 581K and measured 93.4K at the half way point. This is a taper of 16%, however the value of the pot has probably increased with wear, so I'm incline to put this in the 20% category.

As far as pots go it was quite useable. I liked it's taper better than the DR V pots.

The pot I currently have in my PRS was purchased in 2008, so if the taper has changed since 2008, then I'd disregard this info.

The value of the pot is 442K, so it has to have a 20% tolerance which isn't too cool. (Same boat as the Gibson Historic pots.) The pot has a 10% taper which doesn't surprise me as I noticed the difference immediately.

"0" = 0.8Ω
"1" = 1041Ω
"2" = 3500Ω
"3" = 18.5KΩ
"4" = 36.6KΩ
"5" = 55KΩ
"6" = 123KΩ
"7" = 205KΩ
"8" = 297KΩ
"9" = 383KΩ
"10" = 442KΩ

I put the figures into Excel and the Historic pot is still closest in taper to the 59 Centralab. I wouldn't get the PRS unless it is a good deal or you really like the taper of the pot in your PRS.
 

nwobhm

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Hey Quill , I didn't see this part of you post untill now . I have no problem with the TVT pots tension. I don't even concern myself on how much force is needed to turn the any of them . I don't have any trouble with that . And as Matt posted they are the same pots . I like the TVT for the lower K#'s . It's a personal thing . I tried Matts pots and they are fine , turn easy . If you like a brighter Pot , they are worth getting .

I found Mojotone is having there own vintage taper pots made too. I ordered some and there similiar to the TVT pots, only difference is they are really easy to turn and $5 each. I've ordered 6 and they were all slightly over 500k. Mojotone Vintage Taper CTS 500K Short/Split Shaft Guitar Potentiometer
 

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