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rhoads56

Tone Capacitors, values vs sound

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I'm new to the site. Hope my questions will not be interruptive or out of place.

1- I want to install a single volume pot on my guitar (with NO tone pot) BUT get the same sound as if I installed a 250k volume pot in conjunction with a 250k tone pot. What should the k value of my single volume pot be?

2- Do they sell resitances that I could switch off and on with a mini switch in order to get a 100Ok volume pot to sound like a 250k or a 500k pot. If yes, then where in the circuit would this resistance be placed exactly?

Thanks for any info. :D

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  1. Try a 100K pot - it should get you close.
  2. No - you could make a higher resistance pot lower by using a parallel resistor, but it's going to screw up the taper (the way the pot varies over the range of rotation).

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  1. Try a 100K pot - it should get you close.

  2. No - you could make a higher resistance pot lower by using a parallel resistor, but it's going to screw up the taper (the way the pot varies over the range of rotation).

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Does a 1000k pot produce nearly the same sound as if the pickup was connected directlly to the output jack?

Just thought I would mention to all you sound gurus out there that the output jack affects the sound just as much, if not more , than many a pot at position 10. If you doubt it then test a cheap chinese jack (usually sounds shitty) versus a Swithcraft jack (warmer sound) versus à Neutrik jack (more transparent and cuts thru the mix better). The jacks I prefer are the pre-1980 Swithcraft jacks as they just somehow sound better to my ear --- perhaps because the amount of silver in the alloy was changed in the early 1980's. However, with distortion full tilt it is not all that audible for most ears. The jack sound difference is important to me because I play clean most of time with the volume at 10. If you have a cheap Fender Squire try changing their extra cheap jack for a Switchraft and for three bucks you will get a sound improvement worth a hundred dollars or more --- makes the guitar sound closer to an older vintage Fender.

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:D Now I think I've heard everything! Sorry, mate, but I'm gonna have to ask you for some specifics here - in what ways does a cheap jack (that's not corroded or mechanically faulty) degrade the sound? Can you measure ithe effect with instruments, or is this purely anecdotal? Can you, for example, distinguish between Neutriks and Switchcrafts in a double-blind series of listening tests with better results than chance? This whole idea has the pungent aroma of audiophile snake oil, and we've pretty much rejected the whole "magic micro-diodes, C37 lacquer and hand-woven platinum litz wire" mystique around here, but if you have some empirical data to support your position, I'd love to hear it. If not, all you're doing is complicating a process that many are already finding difficult enough, and I would appreciate it if you ceased. No offense or disrespect intended, but perpetuating these myths only muddys the waters, and it's murky enough without adding sorcery to the physics. Extraordinary claims require extraordinary proofs - all I ask is if you don't have the latter, avoid making the former. :D

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:D Now I think I've heard everything! Sorry, mate, but I'm gonna have to ask you for some specifics here - in what ways does a cheap jack (that's not corroded or mechanically faulty) degrade the sound? Can you measure ithe effect with instruments, or is this purely anecdotal? Can you, for example, distinguish between Neutriks and Switchcrafts in a double-blind series of listening tests with better results than chance? This whole idea has the pungent aroma of audiophile snake oil, and we've pretty much rejected the whole "magic micro-diodes, C37 lacquer and hand-woven platinum litz wire" mystique around here, but if you have some empirical data to support your position, I'd love to hear it. If not, all you're doing is complicating a process that many are already finding difficult enough, and I would appreciate it if you ceased. No offense or disrespect intended, but perpetuating these myths only muddys the waters, and it's murky enough without adding sorcery to the physics. Extraordinary claims require extraordinary proofs - all I ask is if you don't have the latter, avoid making the former.  :D

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Come on buddy. Most guitar manufactures would use the cheapest of non-corroding metals if there was no sound difference between alloys! And YES I can tell the difference in a blind test --- after a night's sleep even more so because your ears hear better when rested? Perhaps you should take the time to check out some jacks yourself --- if your ears are good enough? The jacks I compared were all brand new --- no corrosion. Do you think Fender and Gibson would use Swicthcraft jacks just for the hell of it? And doesn't nearly everyone know that near pure silver speaker wires sound much better than copper wires? It has been confirmed many a time that different alloys make a difference in the sound chain! I've also blind tested the jacks with other people. Some definitely hear the difference and some don't. BUT hell some people can't hear the difference between a Martin guitar and a Takamine or a cheap Chinese guitar --- I know because I used to sell guitars. Some people are color blind and some sound blind. I am an off and on acoustic guitar craftsman and subtle sound differences are very important to the overall quality of the sound and one learns to hear the dfferences. In any case has ANYONE ever scientifically tested for sound differences using various jack alloys? Perhaps not --- BUT that does not mean the difference does not exist and that it is not appreciably hearable to afficiandos like myself. Leo Fender said he could hear the difference that different guitar finishes have on a guitar's sound. Makes sense to me --- as so can I. To test, and use, the difference different jacks make I actually have TWO jack outputs on many of my over 15 electric guitars (I also have about 10 acoustic guitars). Note that some pickups will produce a more noticeable difference between jacks and sometimes the cheaper jack is actually better suited sound wise to the overall elements of the guitar. And no I won't comment anymore on this subject unless someone asks me specifically to do so. Take care.

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Well, let's address this, point by point -

Perhaps you should take the time to check out some jacks yourself --- if your ears are good enough?
That's always a good tactic - most people are at least a little intimidated by accusations of inadequacy. Unfortunately, not me. Good try, though.

Do you think Fender and Gibson would use Swicthcraft jacks just for the hell of it?
No, of course not - they use them because they are high-quality, reliable hardware, which is appropriate in an expensive, high-quality guitar. This doesn't imply that they sound any different to any other jack, simply that they are more durable than most cheaper imports.

And doesn't nearly everyone know that near pure silver speaker wires sound much better than copper wires? It has been confirmed many a time that different alloys make a difference in the sound chain!
What "everyone knows" and what is true are often in direct conflict, and I know of no scientific studies that indicate that silver (or any other metal or alloy) is inherently better than garden variety copper for conducting low level audio frequency AC signals. As for anecdotal evidence from audiophile taste tests (usually fom marketing literature), unless the trials are double-blind ABX tests conducted by an uninterested third party, the results are meaningless. Once again, all I ask is some empirical evidence.

...some people can't hear the difference between a Martin guitar and a Takamine or a cheap Chinese guitar --- I know because I used to sell guitars. Some people are color blind and some sound blind. I am an off and on acoustic guitar craftsman and subtle sound differences are very important to the overall quality of the sound and one learns to hear the dfferences. In any case has ANYONE ever scientifically tested for sound differences using various jack alloys? Perhaps not --- BUT that does not mean the difference does not exist and that it is not appreciably hearable to afficiandos like myself...
Those are some impressive qualifications - unfortunately, I can't really compete - I'm just an occasional electric guitar tech and bass player who has worked on and played guitars off and on for some thirty years, but I do have access to an oscilloscope, a spectrum analyzer and a distortion meter, all with impeccable credentials, that lead me to believe that the greater portion of this magic audio mojo is simply imagination and wishful thinking. Again, rather than offering any proof of your rather extraordinary claim, you simply accuse me of being deaf.

You see, if there's an audible difference between even high-quality jacks ( you mentioned Neutriks and Switchcrafts), then there must be a significant electrical difference, and that should be measurable. Series resistance is a second or perhaps third order factor at this signal level, so there would have to be a gross discrepancy there to make an audible difference, and while capacitance might make a difference, the effect would almost certainly be swamped by the guitar cable's capacitance, which should be huge by comparison. Unless you're willing to rewrite particle physics, you're going to have a hard time coming up with a plausible explanation for this audible difference. I have no vested interest in proving you wrong ( in fact, it's probably the least of my concerns overall) - I smply feel that you're doing this forum and audio in general a disservice by adding to the already crippling load of audiophile mythos that we have to struggle with. I believe strongly in your right to have these opinions, but unless they can be independently verified, I really think you should avoid dumping them on the inexperienced, who already have enough confusing info to keep track of. But that's just me... :D

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I'm not agreeing with either opinion or the other, but may I offer the suggestion of a material's attentuative properties? I know different materials have different coefficients of attentuation which would effect the transmission of sound or signal energy differently from material to material.. Also higher frequency signals are attenuated (amplitude decreased) more that the lower frequency signals..

A possible theory to explain a difference in the sound would be that the signals are attentuated more on the cheaper jacks while the more 'transparent' sounding jacks would allow a signal through with less attentuation..

On the other hand, a counter argument could be, firstly, that the distance travelled through the jack by the signal is negligible compared to the distance travelled through the rest of the wiring, so much so that the difference in tone would be almost impossible to detect unless you've got Superman's ears.. Secondly, the difference in the magnitude of attentuation between the highest and lowest frequencies possible from a conventional guitar may also be audibly negligible..

I've got no way to test this without proper equipment, so this remains purely a theory.. Or two.. Personally, I've not noticed a significant tone difference between jacks.. Maybe I'm deaf, maybe I haven't used good jacks, who knows? :D

By the way, isn't this in the wrong area of the forum?? :D

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Well, silver does have about 8% less resistivity than copper... I'm not sure how much different it sounds, though, as I've never actually cared enough to make silver cables :D. I don't believe that junk about different jacks though - it's not possible that it'd have more of an effect than the crappy carbon pots we all use :D. No audiophile would be caught dead with those ANYWHERE in the signal path, even the ones who haven't coughed up for silver cables or fancy jacks.

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Hey Lk i got some of them WereWolf proof guitar cords man if you want to try them out. lol Sorry folks inside running joke with me and Lk.

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Okay, in John Spina's article about (adjusting pot values with additional resistors and)

treble bleed mods, he says

In my Strat's I Like using either Kinman's mod of using a 130k resistor in series with a .0012 cap or Seymour Duncan's mod of using a 100k resistor in parallel with a .002 cap.

For those of us who are new to this and math-impaired, are the .0012 and .002 values micro, nano, or picofarads? (And here's the easy way of doing the conversions: OnlineConversion.com: Capacitance Conversion.)

Thanks.

--

Doug C.

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No, you're off by three zeros:

.022 uF (microfarads) = 22nF (nanofarads) = 22000 pF (picofarads)

  • Micro is *1/(10^6)
  • Nano is *1/(10^9)
  • Pico is *1/(10^12)

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Can someone please explain to me what all the different values of tone capacitors do to affect the sound. Eg: what are the characteristics of each value, why and when certain values should be used, etc.

lol ok people everyone talking about electronics theory which is immense and complicated to understand especially when you have to understand a wave for is in 3d not 2d as scopes read them lol.

all the cos sin pi theta is all for working out angular sinusoidal waves etc. which is all boiling down to trigonometry when we look at the math but hey that is something you spend a lifetime studying so when trying to sort out your guitar all this is gobbled goope unless you got a few years to study all this AC circuits are far easier to understand that DC circuits so been as this question is for AC circuit it should be easy to understand.

AC has a frequency a wavelength which flows in a circuit which means it has a current because it flows and well it has a magnitude a level of power (amplitude) which means it has a level of voltage at a give point in time.

so very easy to understand frequency circuit is of course a flowing current standard flow through standard cables.

I seen many posts on this thread about frequency travelling through wires better in different materials this is very true but the human ear can only hear up to 25khz oops so all that is a waste of time the higher the frequency the more a cable will attenuate measure is in DB so take 1ghz you will notice problems using a standard single core copper wire for this frequency. gold on the other hand will improve the flow of this high frequency current but oh dear we can’t hear 1ghz lol.

gold plated and solid gold audio equipment including computer equipment use gold for one purpose only due to the fact these signals are so low and cable attenuation is negligible. and the reason they are gold is for corrosion (oxidisation) and oxidised connector will cause heavy attenuation not good to audio signals so cote it in gold and hey presto it makes a good connection and can be guaranteed.

for those who get confused with attenuation here is a explanation when your driving in your car at speed the wind is pushing you back and trying to slow you down if your engine stops you will eventually stop as there is no way you can keep it pushing against the apposing wind. this is what happens in any material such as copper which is a very good conductor I must add but life is not perfect and the current has allot of atoms to work its way through and with the opposing force will eventually drain its energy to the point nothing will come out the end of your cable lol. this is called attenuation an apposing force slowing the current flow down (resistance)

oxygen free copper strand audio cable is just as good as gold cable because it is manufactured to keep water and air out from the copper hence prolonging the life of the cable because oxidised copper increases in resistance as it ages. gold plated or solid gold/silver stranded core does the same thing and stop[s high resistance from forming later on down the line and is perfect for outside or mobile equipment use. obvious reasons the attack of moisture.

back to capacitors now due to complexity of the RC (resistor Capacitor) circuit we shall attempt to simplify for the purpose of sorting out your guitar etc.

without going into understanding working out the Voltage, Current, frequency, potential divider and kirchofs law we shall jump strait to a working way out of the issue.

Here is a formula>

Frequency = 1 / (2 x pi x R x C) work out the bracket formula always first if you remember your maths from school. brackets before division multiplication subtraction addition I think that is right lol.

anyway what this formula shows are that we can find out the fundamental frequency that is to pass through the RC circuit given we know values in the circuit. bear in mind this way of doing this is correct but because we are jumping allot of electronics theory we must respect that the formula is what it is. Don’t let this confuse you but Time over RC is very important if we try to work backward. this form of RC circuit is know as 3 different types they all contain a capacitor and a resistor and are know as low pass filters band pass filters and high pass filters very similar to a speaker crossover just a crossover uses inductor coils instead of resistors Butterworth crossover do have resistors but it is as I said above to much to go into right now and requires allot of theory study so be warned you need to set allot of learning time aside here is a good web site for this basic info.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/RC_circuit

easiest way of doing this is to look at the most common used vales of capacitor and add the value into the formula same goes for the POTS.

capacitor used is o.22mfd 0.47mfd

pots are let say std 250kohm and 500kohm

don’t just slap these in formula we need to bring the values back into the form of ohm and farad.

hence 250kohm is > 250,000 ohm

0.22mfd is > 0.0000022 farad named after inventor of capacitor James faraday which is on the UK £20.00 note lol.

now lets get a calculator and enter 2 x pi x 250,000 x 0.0000022 and then while that answer is on the screen enter it into memory or store it or write it down then do 1 / the answer from your calculation above or memory return etc. bingo that is the frequency at 250kohm pot max that is what the capacitor resistor circuit will be fundamentally filtering out your tone.

do the same again and lower your resistance to say 10 ohm > 2 x pi x 10 x 0.0000022 again store or write it down the 1 / the answer then hey wow we have the frequency when the pot is just about turned all the way round the other way play with the Capacitor common values to get a desired frequency you want and go buy one hey also bare in mind changing form 500kohm pots to 1mohm 1 millionth ohm pot will mean you must again play with the capacitor to adjust the filtering fundamental frequency and yes 1 meg pot will make your range far grater than a 500kohm so if you want that hey very well I seen it done many times and I does work well.

understand more check the above webpage at goggles wikipedia site as well as this one here.

http://www.guitarelectronics.com/category/...asicwiringfaqs/

you can check this link to find common values too this is a very simplified explanation so please excuse if there is an are that may cause confusion but I am sure if I was to really go into the angular sinusoid frequency calculations you would be far more confused and loose allot more hair like me so I grew it long hopefully it will suffice to cover bold patches in the future especially when my capacitor finally runs out of charge lol.

hopefully this trial and error will atleast egt you started into looking into the RC circuit and have fun as well as learning the theory in a small nite size manour dont get scared at formulas understand them as rubish, a foreign language what you must do is understand what the circuit is actually doing and how the resistor and capacitor is doing the job the formula is only to work out the numbers again foreign language junk. if you know what the circuit is doing you will know what you are doing lol.

hope this answeres some questions on this thread i might start a new one for all this so you can freshen up on skills and or learn your skills people. thanks hope it helps.http://projectguitar.ibforums.com/style_images/1/folder_post_icons/icon9.gif

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I can hear a sizzling sound.........oops, I think I've just fried my brain :D

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I can hear a sizzling sound.........oops, I think I've just fried my brain :D

LOL :D i get that when trying to play my guitar like angelo bato lol.

fizz bang walop

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