Sprague Orange Drops vs Sozo Mustard....

Discussion in 'Amps/Cabs Tech Corner: Amplifier, Cab & Speakers T' started by gitfiddler, Feb 1, 2010.

  1. gitfiddler

    gitfiddler Supporting Member

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    I have a 100w plexi style head that has the Sozo Mustard caps in it. I was wondering how the Orange Drops differed and if the Orange Drops would be an upgrade? Thanks
     
  2. aaronbarnes

    aaronbarnes Member

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    no, they won't be, imho.
     
  3. brad347

    brad347 Member

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    Some will say that cap brand won't make a difference. Some will say that it can make a huge difference. But I doubt you'd find anyone who would call orange drops an 'upgrade' over Sozo mustard caps in a Plexi.
     
  4. smolder

    smolder Silver Supporting Member

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    I am told there are many varieties of orange drops... Dr Z has some special made... and his amps bear out their characteristics. The common opinion of generic orange drops (715's I think) is that of a more harsh, strident and 'hifi' sound. Not so desirable in a guitar amp. The sozos are an attempt to duplicate the mustard caps that would have come in an older marshall.
     
  5. tommytomcat

    tommytomcat Member

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    You don't like the sound of the amp with Sozo's in there? And... they really do get more clear and defined after 50+ hours.
     
  6. gitfiddler

    gitfiddler Supporting Member

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    Yes i do like the sound of them, I'm just always looking for ways to make my rig sound better.
     
  7. brad347

    brad347 Member

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    Sozo Mustards are nice, high-end caps. I think if you're just curious about ways to improve your rig, you might want to bark up another tree.
     
  8. smolder

    smolder Silver Supporting Member

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    715 to mallory 150 or to sozo I can hear... but sozo yellow to blue i can not... but the blues I've put in only have 10 15 hours on them... have only read above they change as they burn in.
     
  9. phsyconoodler

    phsyconoodler Member

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    It's a quite a game comparing the sound of coupling capacitors.
    I have tried quite a few different types over the years.
    One thing that confuses me is when doing a trem circuit on a Vibro-Champ recently and I used a set of old Sangamo timing caps that measured perfectly on my capcitance meter,but they took quite a long time to charge up so there was quite a delay before the trem started working.So I put in a modern set of ceramic disc that also measured out exactly the same capacitance.The trem worked instantly and obviously they stayed in the circuit.
    So I'm of the opinion that the time constant is the biggest reason why some caps 'sound' better than others.If the capacitance is the same,the only thing that can change the tone would be the time it takes to charge that capacitor.Now I do know that materials used can pass electrons in a different way as well,hence the huge variety of capcitors out there.
    Maybe someone can chime in on this and add to it.It's been hashed out many times,but I don't think anyone addressed the charge time.
     
  10. AR-305

    AR-305 Member

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    I've seen sooooooo many cap debates and have often pondered just how it could be (especially in the area of filter lytics) that several techs will jump up and down at the difference in TONE and DYNAMICS to be found in replacing older caps, that TEST perfectly good, and new caps that some would say are not necessary. My personal conclusion has always been that newer caps are "FASTER" at charging and discharging even when they present the exact same capacitance and ESR as older caps. Here I must agree +1 with the "phsy" on this one. It just makes sense also that in the great coupling cap debate that different caps are "faster" at certain frequencies than others giving them their individual character. Now who has the gear to graph this out with some of the popular brands?
     
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2010
  11. brad347

    brad347 Member

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    I agree, and I've hypothesized that time-related things are the source of capacitor tone differences for awhile, myself, but for me it was just a hypothesis, not a tested, observed phenomenon like in your case.

    I've always thought in terms of stray inductance involved with most "rolled up like a cigarette" film cap designs, which are essentially little coils. I do know that some caps like Hovlands that are marketed toward high-fidelity enthusiasts tout their extremely low inductance.

    Sometimes the group delay/slew rate things in certain components can yield a "larger than life" sound. I believe that it's the output transformers in tube amps that contribute a lot of the "tube sound," not just the tubes themselves.

    Anyone who has ever used a transformer-balanced mic preamp like a Neve 1073 as compared to a very fast transformerless mic preamp like a Millenia will know the "larger than life" sound I'm talking about, and those are both solid-state designs. It's an exaggerated kind of with/depth/breadth to the soundstage that the transformers seem to impart.

    As it relates to transformers, all of this stuff is well-documented in white papers by Jensen and other companies.

    To me, some of the more famous paper-in-oil capacitors have always imparted that same 'larger than life' feeling, which I like... I always assumed there was some sort of group delay or other phase anomaly happening due to the design of those particular capacitors (vitamin Q et al).
     
  12. Trout

    Trout Member

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    I have a 100w plexi style head that has the Sozo Mustard caps in it. I was wondering how the Orange Drops differed and if the Orange Drops would be an upgrade? Thanks

    Actually Yes, the orange drops would be an upgrade.

    :stir
     
  13. smolder

    smolder Silver Supporting Member

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    that is some very arromatic bait ; )
     
  14. Trout

    Trout Member

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    :beer


    Honestly,

    I am a huge fan of the 6PS series SBE (Sprague) OD's I love in your Face Rock & Roll baby.

    Every time I try the " Boutique Caps " all I get is muted mushy girlie tone.
    I like my amps to kick like a mule, and sting like a bee, and OD's baby, they do it for me.
    Anything else is controlled elsewhere, speaker, pickups, pick attack tubes and blah blah blah.

    We need a NTSA emoticon , this topic has been beat to death.
     
  15. phsyconoodler

    phsyconoodler Member

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    quote: "Every time I try the " Boutique Caps " all I get is muted mushy girlie tone."

    Not everyone plays that chunka chunka tone./but I tend to agree about getting that tone from a Marshall amp.
    I put a set of paper in oil caps in one of my Overdrive Rocket amps and it's very clear and transparent sounding but it lacks the chunk that a faster cap gives you.
    I like The Sprague SBE orange drops for that type of tone.
     
  16. davemccarthy707

    davemccarthy707 Member

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    :horse
     
  17. DT7

    DT7 Member

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    Oh? Which kind? :warning
     
  18. Mike9

    Mike9 Gold Supporting Member

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    OK - who built the amp? If they are using Sozo's it must be for a reason. I think George at Metro specs Sozo's no?
     
  19. zzmoore

    zzmoore Supporting Member

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    Good Grief, coupling cap break-in hours...... Is that hemisphere dependent?
     
  20. KGWagner

    KGWagner Member

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    Won't make a lick of difference, if all the values are identical.

    The only way to change the time constant (charge/discharge or frequency response) of an RC circuit with a given feed is to change either the R or the C. It's just simple physics, and I don't understand why everyone argues about it. You can read how it works here. These rules have been around since forever, and are taught in electrical engineering 101 along with Ohm's law. I mean, it's fundamental stuff. It's not an opinion, anecdote, guess or belief.

    Now, I know there are a million stories about how somebody did a "cap job" and their amp sounded dramatically better. But, there are a couple things to keep in mind with those stories.

    First, "better" is subjective. I think broccoli tastes better than asparagus. Does it? Depends who you talk to. There are many who'd tell me I'm sadly mistaken about the relative goodness of those two veggies <grin> It would be more accurate to say "different".

    Second, there's a surprising amount of variation in capacitance values for a given rating, sometimes as much as 20%. .47µf will often be anywhere between .33µf and .56µf. So, changing a Sozo .47µf for a Sprague .47µf means you might be moving as much as .22µf in capacity, which can make a dramatic difference in tone. Think of the difference the tone control makes on your guitar when it's rolled all the way on or off - that's usually the effect of a .22µf cap. But guess what? You could have the same thing happen by changing a Sozo .47µf for a Sozo .47µf. It would be an interesting exercise for someone with too much time on their hands to do just that - replace all the Sozo caps with all Sozo caps of the same value, and have testers listen to the difference. I can pretty much guarantee there'll be one, because even Sozo caps vary from part to part.

    The only other differences between caps have to do with their working voltage and packaging, which has no real effect on how they work in a circuit other than to set a withstand rating for the dielectric's insulation strength.
     
    Last edited: Feb 3, 2010

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