Tone control based on Guild T-Bird

Pickups, wiring schemes, switch techniques and onboard active electronics for guitars and basses
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EddieTavares
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Post by EddieTavares »

Hello guys.

I'm one of those guitarists who does not live without volume and tone controls, I am used to set my amp with more highs and cut this excess in the tone control, when I want my guitar more expressive I turn the tone a little way up as a result it works as a second volume control that avoids gain losses.

Strat control tone works ok, but they are effective after 5 and its a little aggressive at the begnining (3 to 0), this circuit I have implement in one of my strats in the bridge and neck pickups, if its all the way up it does not effects the tone and if you turn just a little down you can hear the effect on the tone just in the higher (9, 8...). It cannot be implement like almost all strats wiring diagrams so I had to make the signal pass though the tone control before the switch.
I'm thinking in increase the capacitor value and add a resistor like in greasebucket controls, but in this way it works a way better than the common strat tone to my ears.
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EddieTavares
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Post by EddieTavares »

A updated strat wiring, this one alows to use separately tones with no interaction between both ones. In my guitar caps are 4,7nf and resistors are 22khom.
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freefrog
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Post by freefrog »

Thx for sharing!

In my main Strat I've a TBX pot with a grease bucket tone on the 250k side, while the 1M side hosts a dual circuit: @ 10/10, it puts in parallel of the pickups a personalized Q filter, hosting a choke of several Henries in series with a resistor. It decreases the measured DCR & inductance of the pickups to those of thin bright underwound PU's. @ 5/10 (when the 1M side is @ 0 and the no-load 250k tone control not yet engaged), it puts a 1nF cap in parallel with the pickups, making them sound middier like overwound single coils and/or through a long capacitive cable.

Very handy when I play this Strat on stage through a cranked Marshall after having using it through a clean Fender set for spanky tones... From Niles Rodgers to Uli Roth on the flick of a pot.

1nF is very low : but it works and sounds natural when it comes to soften the high range / promote the high mids just as desired (and it's not the only tone cap of this control anyway).

Bill Lawrence evoked a 2,4nF cap to emulate Hendrix tones due to a long curly cable (in the third paragraph from the bottom here: http://www.billlawrence.com/Pages/All_A ... dSound.htm ).

A famous pickups maker recommends (confidentially) 3.3nF caps, which are BTW a very efficient recipe to make Filter'Tron's sounding like Gibson style humbuckers...

I suppose what I'm trying to say is that a world is still to explore with low value capacitors, even lower than 4,7nF, 10nF or 12nF. FWIW... :-)

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EddieTavares
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Post by EddieTavares »

freefrog

Almost all guitar players just never realize that by using controls we have a bunch of tones so they prefer to change a preset, there is no right or wrong about it but sometimes they change the pickups because they want a brighter, warmer, blablabla tone. .. and so they forget to use the controls!
As you can see in the draw I move the middle tone to bridge pickup what helps cutting of the excess of brightness what several guitarists doesn't like about the bridge pickup.
In my experiences, lower cap values (2n2... 22nf) ​​rolls off the brightness without getting too moody what sounds better to get a "hollow" tone but if you like a distortions higher values (33nf to 100nf) are more effective, unfortunately higher values make the pot acts more as a volume control.

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freefrog
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Post by freefrog »

Yep, there's many interesting things to do with tone caps. One can even put them in an external case like Fralin did. LOL.

Here is an example where he uses this experimental device to demonstrates how a 2,2nF (and not the usual 22nF) tone cap sounds with a Telecaster:

All that being said: practically, a tone cap starts to affect fundamental notes (with a potential effect on their volume) as soon as it's higher than 6.8nF... and that's with bright low inductance single coils played through a short cable! With a PAF replica, it would be necessary to get as low as 3.3nF for the same range... That's also for this reason that I evoked very low capacitive values: people who want a tone pot to affect only harmonics and not fundamental notes would find a benefit in the 1nF to 6.8nF range IMHO / IME. YMMV. :-)

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EddieTavares
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Post by EddieTavares »

Wow that's a peace of gold.

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