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capacitor type

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Guest icantbuyafender

should one be choosey when it comes down to voltage and type?


i know the capacitance is what makes the difference, but that is on the 200-600 V caps.


has anyone tried values less than that?


what would they do?


I saw some caps that i thought about cannibalizing out of an old stereo.


they were assorted voltages that were less than 100


one was a sprague 25V 25uf silver cap and another was a 10uf 16V and a 22uf 68V


i think they were electrolytic caps....


would these values do any good or do any harm as a tone cap?

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Any cap will have sufficient voltage rating for use as a tone cap in a guitar. We're dealing with millivolts here at most. The only reason Gibson used 400V caps back in the day was because that's what was lying around.


However anything much over .022 µF is going to really kill your high end as soon as you start dialing down the tone. The values you are asking about are much much much too large.


As to the 'brand' of caps, let me say one thing. NOBODY that ever claims to see 'a huge improvement' from changing to expensive golden ear caps has EVER performed a proper double-blind test; and therefore all such opinions are exactly that, and baseless. You spend money on new caps, you expect an improvement, and therefore you 'hear' one.

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I'm no expert with values or anything, but I RS'd my Gibson LP and my MIJ Epi Jr., and whether its a combination of real PIO caps, RS superpots, wiring etc., those two guitars turned into absolute animals! My Elitist GT is next in line, the tone and volume controls are only halfway useful right now. Don't get me wrong, I love the way the guitar sounds overall, but I find I just can't get many tonal differences, or cleanup my Class A tube combo very well. My other guitars with the full RS are 100% useful.

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There's a lot of 'tolerance' in electronic components and naturally the cheap ones are the worst. Now imagine if you have a cheap Alpha tone pot, supposedly 500K in value but it's actually only about 400K or so (i.e. off by 20%). Then, you pop in a high quality pot that is much closer to 500K in value. All of a sudden the high end on your guitar pops out with much greater definition since you are effectively bleeding less highs to ground. Now, if you found an Alpha that was closer to spec, it too would sound miraculously better than the original low-value pot. Same goes for volume pots, but in the reverse; many cheap pots will still present anywhere up to 100O of resistance even when supposedly wide open. The thing about high-end components is that they are more consistent. You also have to admit that just removing the spaghetti that some manufacturers cram into their guitars will do wonders as well.


And the bottom line, unless you can completely remove the subjective factor, it's impossible to make an objective empirical evaluation. Unfortunately a true A/B test is very difficult to perform since you need to have two identical guitars to start with so that you always have a 'control' reference point. Then you have to make sure that you have no way of knowing which is which when you do your evaluations so as to remove any influence based on what you are expecting to hear. Even the person handing you the guitar cannot be aware of which is which so as to ensure that no subliminal clues are passed. I know that sounds excessive but nonetheless therein lies the difference between science and voodoo.

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Thanks for all that Spud. I never thought about the pot readings. That makes a lot of sense! A combination of high-end electronics and wiring will be more consistant as you said, rather than a so called "value" that can have give or take tolerances in lower end stuff. You're making me learn stuff! Always good lol!

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And that, ladies and gentlemen, is why it's good to have Spud around. An experienced, knowledgeable

and sane voice in a sea of mojo voodoo BS. People will ultimately believe what they want but better

information about this stuff will help everybody. Thanks, Spud!

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200V or less is fine.. you have much smaller voltages in the guitar than that.. bigger ones are a waste of money.

brand changes only have to do with tolerance.. how accurate the value actually is.. and how well they are made.

good poly caps are good enough for me.. but I've ordered some oil in paper just to see/hear if I see/hear anything.


a change of value produces a difference not in your overall tone, but only in where the frequency at which you cut your highs

winds up being.

So yes, you can hear a change, but it's not changed your tone, just the center frequency of the tone pot.


I like sprague orange drops.. well made.. and they are big and orange.

how cool is that?

Mojo counts!


Run a 220K 1W resistor in parallel with a .001 500V cap on your bridge/tail ground, and instead of you getting a shock from an accident, the little circuit frys and you live.


ceramic chip caps are fine for treble bleeds.. they are high voltage caps, but cheap.. although you can use more expensive caps, too.


I can't see much difference between the quality of rat shack greeny caps and sprague orange drops..

the tolerances are similar, the caps will probably not outlast one another.

But I like orange.. and I also like to support a company that makes a cap that you'd much rather have in your amp anyday..

so sprague gets my money.

the cents difference is negligible.


We've had the mojo discussion before.. and I've weighed in on that..

fun is fun.. to one guy, and just bs to another.. and to another it's gospel..


You find variance in tolerance on every component.. no matter the brand.

A Picky person will measure each one and choose their preference.

Most don't go that far, not having a DMM or the basic knowledge.


But it's like everything else about guitar..

best, har!

I'd bet a lot of guitars played by even famous guys have differences.. and they like them that way.

So there's taste.. which is also mojo.. and it's valid.


don't use electrolytics in guitars.

At least not in passive guitars.


Alphas are less expensive, and do tend to vary more in tolerance..

But also make some nice pots that feel good and work just fine.

Also, they come in metric shaft and spline so they fit epis.

A decent enough choice in my book.


A GF of mine made pots .. in america.. and once they made like ten thousand..


but management shipped anyway, to meet the contract deadline.

ah, business..



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A GF of mine made pots .. in america.. and once they made like ten thousand..

backwards. but management shipped anyway' date=' to meet the contract deadline.

ah, business.TWANG[/quote']

For left-handed guitars, no doubt.

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