Capacitor question (Strat)

Discussion in 'Guitars in General' started by GloryJones, Mar 14, 2015.

  1. GloryJones

    GloryJones Supporting Member

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    My Strat is pretty bassy. It had a .047uF cap on the master tone knob. I am considering a cap change.

    Will a .022 cap make a big difference?

    The current cap is an orange drop. I'm considering a .022 orange drop or .022 paper in oil. What are the major tone differences between orange drop and PIO? I've read that PIO caps are warmer and fatter. I've also read that they can sound muddy and "blanket" your tone. Looking for opinions here.
     
  2. swiveltung

    swiveltung Member

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    I'd go with a standard Strat tiny cap. Poly .022 I think. Don't change what aint broke. Strats aren't known for being muddy....You mean muddy in the neck pickup? What pickup do you have in there? BTW:If it's muddy with your tone pot wide open.. the cap has nothing to do with that.
     
  3. Jason_77

    Jason_77 Member

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    Only if you're losing too much high end when you turn down the tone knob, creating the illusion of too much bass. The value of the cap determines the frequency where the rolloff of the highs will start. So, if you think it's too bassy sounding with your tone at 10, the cap change won't make a difference. In that case, you could put a cap in line between the pickup's lead and the pot so the cap will filter out the low end.


    None. Seriously. The signal passing through the cap is bled off to ground. It's not going into your amp. (well, technically it is but it's bypassing everything and going right out through the ground connection on the power cord).


    Nonsense. These are gimmicky claims used to sell overpriced caps.
     
  4. EADGBE

    EADGBE Member

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    You could try a 500K volume pot and a .022 mylar cap for the tone.
     
  5. GloryJones

    GloryJones Supporting Member

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    Interesting. Good info here, thanks. The neck pickup is pretty bassy. I've adjusted the height, which helps a little. It's not muddy with the tone wide open. It starts to get muddy as I roll the tone down, around the area I where usually like to play. The pickups are custom wound, A5 in the neck and A3 in the middle and bridge.
     
  6. TheoDog

    TheoDog Silver Supporting Member

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    Lower value cap is a good choice.
    PIO caps look cool if you happen to take the pickguard off a lot. May or may not sound different.
    50's wiring has a bit more "in your face" tone. It is worth investigating.
     
  7. GloryJones

    GloryJones Supporting Member

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    There's really not much difference between these two caps?
     
  8. swiveltung

    swiveltung Member

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    Go with the .022 then.
     
  9. Jason_77

    Jason_77 Member

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    Not in how they're used inside the guitar, no. Now, if they were used as coupling caps inside an amp where the signal from one stage passes through the cap to get to the next stage, then, yes, the material would make a difference. But in the guitar, the cap is taking part of the signal and sending it to ground. It's not going through your amp like the rest of the signal coming out of the guitar.
     
  10. Doctor Morbius

    Doctor Morbius Member

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    What you want a treble bleed volume circuit. Don't bother with the PIO caps. Orange drop or some other brand of metalized polypropylene is better and will cost less.

    http://www.mojotone.com/guitar-parts/Guitar-Capacitors/Volume-Mod-for-Guitars#.VQTHzC59t_E

    Here's a 0.022 uF film cap with 3% tolerance for 84 cents. This is what I have. You're not likely to find a more suitable capacitor with better specs. I know for a fact the ESR on a PIO cap is going to be much higher than this cap offers.

    http://www.mouser.com/ProductDetail...EpiMZZMv1cc3ydrPrF%2bsu0%2bUU4qEg9Wdz6SRHC6o=
     
  11. Doctor Morbius

    Doctor Morbius Member

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    In regards to PIO caps, they aren't just overpriced. They are inferior in every way. No electrician worth their salt would ever recommend them.
     
  12. gulliver

    gulliver Member

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    I built one of these to hear the difference ... there really isn't much of a difference and, of course, there is no difference when the knob is on 10. IMHO ... Just use the industry standard for the type of guitar you're using.


    [​IMG]
     
  13. Ron Kirn

    Ron Kirn Gold Supporting Member

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    the cap is inexpensive, the mod is easy, do it... you'll never know unless you do so.

    Ron Kirn
     
  14. darkphader

    darkphader Member

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    Another possibility: you may have a pot that's way out of spec. I recently rewired a used Heritage that I picked up, one pot was around 480k, another about 200k, and the other two were around 80k. Check those puppies out with an ohmmeter.
     
  15. Ron Kirn

    Ron Kirn Gold Supporting Member

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    good point and often overlooked, old OEM vintage parts don't get better with age, old electronics only get older.... Jee, I have something in common with old pots... :worried

    rk
     
  16. GloryJones

    GloryJones Supporting Member

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    Pots are definitely 250k.
     
  17. GloryJones

    GloryJones Supporting Member

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    Update:

    I swapped the caps, so it's got a .022 orange drop. The guitar is suddenly very trebly. It's really shrill at 5 and above. With the tone knob around 4 it sounds normal. Any thoughts here?
     
  18. Seegs

    Seegs Member

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    Clear pictures of the wiring and your soldering job would be helpful...
     
  19. TheoDog

    TheoDog Silver Supporting Member

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    If you switched from .047 to .022 and it made that much of a difference, track down a .033 or .039.
     
  20. buddastrat

    buddastrat Member

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    That's odd. .022 is the norm for modern strats. But most strats aren't shrill even with tone on 10. On some the bridge can be a bit ice picky. I don't know how you went from real bassy to shrill, tho'. I think a .022 rolls off more subtle than a .047. As you go down from "10". So a .047 will get darker faster. If I remember right.
     

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