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Point to Point Wiring...better sounding?

Elvis Fury

Member
Messages
123
I'm an amateur builder and by no means that great. I've noticed some builders use point to point wiring with no circuit board. How does this work and is it better (I'm not sure if that's the correct term I'm looking for) sounding than the alternative?Thanks
 

CodeMonk

Member
Messages
1,678
PTP better sounding?
No.
Looks cooler? Sometimes.
Easier to repair? Again, sometimes.
Using the same exact components, with the same exact values will sound the same whether on PCB or PTP.
Modulation pedals like delays, even using the same exact components, with the same exact values can sound different however.
With those, signal routing and component placement CAN make a difference.

Making your own PCB's can be a PITA.
 

cbm

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
6,942
A good circuit board layout sounds as good as any point-to-point wiring, and often times better, particularly with a good ground plane on the board. A good circuit board layout take some skill and experience, though.

I do have some point-to-point wired pedals, which I absolutely love, but not because of the assembly technique.
 

Figaro

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
12,929
PTP better sounding?
No.
Looks cooler? Sometimes.
Easier to repair? Again, sometimes.
Using the same exact components, with the same exact values will sound the same whether on PCB or PTP.
Modulation pedals like delays, even using the same exact components, with the same exact values can sound different however.
With those, signal routing and component placement CAN make a difference.

Making your own PCB's can be a PITA.
I disagree on two things. Signal routing and component placement can also make a difference in amps. Also, a circuit board itself can cause problems with circuits that PTP will not have.
 

CodeMonk

Member
Messages
1,678
I disagree on two things. Signal routing and component placement can also make a difference in amps. Also, a circuit board itself can cause problems with circuits that PTP will not have.
I assumed since he said he was an amateur builder, he's building pedals, not amps.
And this, again:
Modulation pedals like delays, even using the same exact components, with the same exact values can sound different however.
With those, signal routing and component placement CAN make a difference.
Which can also apply to amps, to an even higher degree given the higher current.
Signal routing being the key word there.
 

Sweetfinger

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
12,741
a circuit board itself can cause problems with circuits that PTP will not have.
...and PTP can have problems that a circuit board will not have. They are simply construction methods. Those methods can be well executed or done poorly. You may see a gorgeous nicely done PTP amp that sounds terrible because the circuit is a poor design and you may find a gruesome looking cheap PCB amp with sloppy component stuffing and dodgy solder flow that sounds great.
I just refurbished a 60s Gibson PTP amp. Gibson must have never expected to service the thing. I had to pull an entire layer of components off a narrow tag strip in order to get to the faulty components underneath. The amp is noisy due to layout and sounded like ass as a stock circuit. Simply put- terrible design but hey, point to point!
 

cbm

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
6,942
Also, a circuit board itself can cause problems with circuits that PTP will not have.
...and PTP can have problems that a circuit board will not have.
Both true. Care has to be paid to the design in either case.

My favorite computer programming adage is "You can write bad Fortran in any language." To me, this means that the tools are less relevant that the competence, or lack thereof, of the designer.
 

CodeMonk

Member
Messages
1,678
Both true. Care has to be paid to the design in either case.

My favorite computer programming adage is "You can write bad Fortran in any language." To me, this means that the tools are less relevant that the competence, or lack thereof, of the designer.
I'd like to add, or maybe clarify that?
You can have a great design, on paper (schematic), that can have the potential to produce great results.
Its the application of that design (designing the PCB or PTP layout) that can have a big impact, good or bad.
 

cbm

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
6,942
I'd like to add, or maybe clarify that?
You can have a great design, on paper (schematic), that can have the potential to produce great results.
Its the application of that design (designing the PCB or PTP layout) that can have a big impact, good or bad.
Right. When designing something, the design doesn't stop with the schematic. A circuit board, or a tag board layout are all important aspects of a design.
 

Seegs

Member
Messages
10,170
If I didn't know...I'm sure I couldn't tell...

I thinks pt. to pt. is easier to service and mod but tonally I'm sure I wouldn't notice...
 

walterw

Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
38,583
PTP wiring in pedals is nothing more than a novelty, a modern expression of a fetish for vintage manufacturing that never existed originally and has nothing to do with tone or serviceability. it's like those bicycles with the giant back tires, it looks neat but offers no actual improvements.

you might as well have a "steampunk" pedal with fake gears and clock faces and stuff, it has nothing to do with the performance or sound.
 

sanfi4u

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
4,553
You can have a great design, on paper (schematic), that can have the potential to produce great results.
Its the application of that design (designing the PCB or PTP layout) that can have a big impact, good or bad.
Finally someone has said this. :dude. I couldn't agree more on that. But it can't be the case for amps and totally out of the equation for pedals, affect modulation and do not affect dirt pedals. It's always there. All aspects of schematic application (part selection, way they are connected) affect the final result including the sound. Obviously it can be more or less noticeable depending on many factors including the schematic itself. That's IMHO.
 

CodeMonk

Member
Messages
1,678
Hell, sometimes its fun to do PTP.
Heres one I did a few years ago (its posted in some DIY pedal thread here):


Enclosure:





This was more a labor of love and something I worked on a little bit at a time.
Its made from leftover Baltic Birch scraps I had from a 2x12 cab build.
I just glued all the layers together and had a machinist friend hollow it out and do the drilling for me.

Its more art than pedal to me.
 

Sweetfinger

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
12,741
you might as well have a "steampunk" pedal with fake gears and clock faces and stuff, it has nothing to do with the performance or sound.
Hah hoah!!! What if you had a tremolo (or any waveform driven circuit) that took the sine wave from a tooth gear sensed with a magnetic pickup, hall sensor, or optical sensor? You could have different shaped teeth for the different waveforms (like a tonewheel organ) and some kind of little transmission to change gear speeds. How about little shifter levers to slide the sensors between the different tooth gears? I'm sure it should be wound with a key.
I feel a handlebar moustache growing just thinking about it!
 




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