Capacitors - Do you really care?

1stormcat

Member
Messages
100
I've just read a article in Premier Guitar about capacitors. Are they really as important as the article makes out or are they just filling pages? Let's hear some opinions.
 

touji

Member
Messages
264
From what I learned in physics class, I would find them to be as important as people make them out to be. I think in electronics they basically even out the distribution of charge and current so nothing blows out or gets surged with too much power? I would love to know more about this topic and I hope that experts can give some "real" information and opinions :p
 

supernosher

Senior Member
Messages
357
It comes down to how they sound, and if you can hear the difference, then you can't deny their importance.
 

bluesjuke

Disrespected Elder
Messages
24,175
I like PIO caps.
Yes, it matters to me. I think I get a much smoother rolloff with them.
 

drewl

Member
Messages
8,561
Ooh like those sought after bumble caps people pay tons of money for when there's loads of them in old organs people throw out all the time.I put them in my lesPaul....sounds the same to me.
 

K-Line

Vendor
Messages
8,747
Good quality brand is important. The value is critical. When I want a darker strat, I use a .047 OD. When I want less treble bled off, then .022 OD. IMHO, the value matters more than the brand.
 

GAD

Wubbalubbadubdub
Gold Supporting Member
Messages
14,805
Caps can be used as filters. A quality filter will have better results than a poor one.

GAD
 

eurotrashed

Member
Messages
1,226
From what I learned in physics class, I would find them to be as important as people make them out to be. I think in electronics they basically even out the distribution of charge and current so nothing blows out or gets surged with too much power? I would love to know more about this topic and I hope that experts can give some "real" information and opinions :p

Physics class did not teach you well, sorry.

A capacitor stores an electrical charge.

In a guitar it is combined with a variable resistor (potentiometer) to create a filter.

A similar filter can be made with an inductor also.

Same concepts go into a band-pass filter for your radio. You chose a frequency on your radio, and the filter filters out all frequencies other than the frequency you want.

If you have component speakers in your car, there is a "cross over" which is different inductors and capacitors and when a signal goes through the wire, the frequencies go down the path that is "easiest" for that frequency.

Thats the kind of stuff caps do in audio circuits.

Capacitors can also store a charge to be released quickly, like for your camera flash.

Or if you have kids and they have those little cars that you put on a base and they charge up real fast and you put them down and they go for like 30 secs and then charge in another 10 seconds. That is a capacitor.

Or if people have subwoofers in their trunk they use a 1 farad capacitor to hold a charge so the lights don't dim when the bass hits.


I hear all these debates of the type of capacitor affecting the tone but I don't buy into it too much other than a cap that has a higher tolerance is going to behave different than a cap with a low tolerance.
 

touji

Member
Messages
264
I knew that they held charge I just didn't know how they would be used in context of guitar equipment and electronics other than just holding a charge, sorry :p
 

RocksOff

Member
Messages
7,456
Yup. They matter, but it depends on where and how they are used. I know that's vague... but it's true. Try building an amp with Radio Shack caps.
 

Steven

Member
Messages
2,364
In my own builds I put orange drops or mallorys - for some reason those caps makes me feel good but I guess I woldnt be able to hear any differense in a bind test between those and other caps. But mojo shoudnt be underestimated. If you feel good about an instrument you might play better.
 

bunny

Member
Messages
442
Soviet NOS PIO caps made in 70s - the best in Nocasters, actualy they sell the same caps on ebay wrapped in paper and made to look like vintage:)
 

Doug Tulloch

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
688
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I've got a few...
 

neastguy

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
16,015
if I unsolder the cap on my strat and make it capless, I wont shock myself will I.. what will happen?
 

bunny

Member
Messages
442
I live in Ukraine, so there're still some sources here, i mean NOS military parts, wire, copper foil, old high quality tools etc. Though it's getting harder to find what you need..
 




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