500k tone pot to brighten up a strat neck pickup?

Discussion in 'Luthier's Guitar & Bass Technical Discussion' started by Muttlyboy, May 18, 2019.

  1. Muttlyboy

    Muttlyboy Member

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    I've been fooling around with a Strat project, and I think that the neck pickup seems a bit dull.
    Before I start swapping out pickups, I wonder if a 500k tone pot for the neck only may brighten things up a bit.

    Has anybody else tried it?

    Thanks ,
    Chris
     
  2. 70 Mach 1

    70 Mach 1 Supporting Member

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    Which pup are we talking about.

    Have you checked the cap and heights.
     
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  3. Juan Wayne

    Juan Wayne Member

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    I second checking for height first. Also, a 500k tone pot will offer a marginal change at best.
     
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  4. testing1two

    testing1two Gold Supporting Member

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    Changing pots won't make a night & day difference. If you like the character of the pickup then pots can help you with that last 5% but if the pickup doesn't make you happy then a 500k pot won't change your mind.
     
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  5. Killed_by_Death

    Killed_by_Death Member

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    500,000 treble-cut pots won't help that much, but maybe you could change out 1 treble-cut with a 500k Ohm, & the volume pot for a 500k Ohm.
     
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  6. walterw

    walterw Gold Supporting Member

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    sure, worth a shot. it won't be night and day but you should hear a difference.
     
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  7. bigtone23

    bigtone23 Member

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    Or get a no-load tone pot..? Makes as much difference a tone pot can make.
    Still need to brighten up? Get a 500K volume pot. However, your bridge PU got really bright unless you knock it down with a 220K resistor.
     
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  8. ManniHimself

    ManniHimself Member

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    In my experience tone pots values have a marginal impact but there is no harm in trying. You could also go for a 500k volume and use a 470k resistor for the other two pickups (similar to what suhr does in HSS sets), the question is how much high frequences you need to get it right.
     
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  9. walterw

    walterw Gold Supporting Member

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    the problem with increasing the volume pot resistance is it changes the sweep and gets darker when you roll it back than with the 250k.

    higher value tone pots are "free", you don't compromise anything. nudge the 500k audio tone back to about "7" and it's exactly like a 250k on "10".
     
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  10. youandme

    youandme Gold Supporting Member

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    I cut the tone pots out on my neck and middle pups... only wired a tone pot for the bridge... totally opened up the sound...
     
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  11. galibier_un

    galibier_un Supporting Member

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    Try a .015 uF tone cap?

    ... Thom
     
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  12. ballynally

    ballynally Member

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    Are you sure you need more treble or less bass on the neck pickup? The latter is more common..
    I wouldnt go 500k..
     
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  13. Muttlyboy

    Muttlyboy Member

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    Looking for a bit more high end "shimmer" or "glass" The pickup in question is a neck position Suhr ML (classic?) that measures 6.1k on the multimeter at the output jack( all knobs on full)
    I'm also thinking about a lower wind neck pickup
     
  14. Juan Wayne

    Juan Wayne Member

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    Just out of curiosity, are you plugged straight into the amp with a reasonably short cable? There might be something else here. Also, did you get a minute to check for pickup height?
     
  15. walterw

    walterw Gold Supporting Member

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    that's a great pickup and should sound "right" with regular 250k pots. i'd suspect something else is going on.
     
  16. bobotwt

    bobotwt Supporting Member

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    Does the value of the cap affect the tone when on 10? I though the pot resistance determined that, and that the cap just affects how deep into the treble/mids the filtering goes.

    Josh
     
  17. walterw

    walterw Gold Supporting Member

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    nope.

    at that setting you can literally replace the tone cap with a piece of straight wire and it'll sound the same.
     
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  18. Terry McInturff

    Terry McInturff 40th Anniversary of guitar building! Gold Supporting Member

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    I would like to step in here briefly in order to say that....after having read numerous posts from our very own @walterw ...that I would-and-do consider his opinion on this topic (as well as on many others) to be of the highest professional quality. For what that's worth!!!!!
    I would advise all readers to take his comments to heart. Thank you Walter for what you share! :) I have learned from you and I definitely look forward to learning even more sir.
     
    Last edited: May 29, 2019
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  19. '62 Stratmaniac

    '62 Stratmaniac Member

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    John is a TGP member @Husky. You might reach out to him for suggestions.
     
  20. jvin248

    jvin248 Member

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    .

    If you are trying to brighten a pickup -- use a higher measured kohm Volume pot (at the high end spec of 250k which could measure 275kohm or move up to 500k or 1Meg).

    .
     

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