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Aster1

If I want more "brightness" from P-90 Pups?

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Hi Guys,

 

I love my Casino Elitist but do have a yearn for more treble bit esp on the bridge pup than I have. I don't need/want it to be like my Gretsch Duo, Rics or Fender Tele/Strat type of bite exactly. But more that direction than the tame treble they present right now. Would that be a tone cap change or tone pot change?

 

Thanks

 

Aster

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I don't know what pots you have in your Casino- but 500k pots will brighten it up, kinda like what you are looking for- and, I unhook the tone controls completly out of the circuit. but that's just me-

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Any suggestion on a value or "style" of the cap to change to? Also, do you change both the pot & the cap or is that overkill?

 

Thanks again for any help!!

 

Aster

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Epi's use 500K pots, which are fairly bright. To get more treble you can:

 

- use plastic covers instead of the stock metal ones. They reduce hum and high end.

 

- Use one or two 1-meg pots for each PU, instead of 500K's. They let through more treble.

 

 

Caps only impact the tone when you dial down the tones pots. You won't be able to tell any difference.

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If different pots don't do it, you'll have to look at pickups.

 

I've started winding my own because it's a cheap way to experiment with tone. It's really not that hard.

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Epi's use 500K pots, which are fairly bright. To get more treble you can:

 

- use plastic covers instead of the stock metal ones. They reduce hum and high end.

 

- Use one or two 1-meg pots for each PU, instead of 500K's. They let through more treble.

 

 

Caps only impact the tone when you dial down the tones pots. You won't be able to tell any difference.

 

 

+1. Adjusting the pole piece heights may help too.

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Another thing to consider, cheap nasty pots regardless of their value seem to have a duller sound... Perhaps cheap materials don't transfer the signals as efficiently as good ones, or perhaps poor build quality allows for a small amount of capacitance or something.

 

I am willing to bet that if you change out all the components and wiring for high quality ones it will bring your guitar to life. Use 500K pots and use eithe .022 or .033 caps ... Why not buy some of each and experiment to see what works best in your guitar, some folks also use .015 or .047 uf. Or mix and match.

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if its a 47 in there which i believe fender uses on single coils id go to a 33. i did this on my strat and i also have 33 in my epi 56 gold top at this time .. but it was trial and error for me to finally come to this conclusion. on my gretsch with filtertrons.. i have there normal cap but i installed what they called a mud switch.. at first using what gretsch suggested i ended up down at.. 010 and 005 for subtle changes. when i was experementing i went to radio shack and bought a bunch of cheap ceramic caps and ran the wires from the pot out of the guitar so i could change quickly and plug in to try it. once i determined what value area i wanted to be in then i went and bought quality paper and oil caps and installed them perminantly.

again its trial and error till you find what you want. thats the cheapest way with the radio shack packet of caps they sell 100 i think different values and its like 6 bucks.. but the bottom like lesser value = more treble. no need to change the pot unless you decide to at a later date.

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Another point , cheap pots have rather loose tolerances, a 500K Pot could measure as low as 400k

 

I think all pots have at least a 10% plus-or-minus variance on resistance.

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I think all pots have at least a 10% plus-or-minus variance on resistance.

 

 

aye, but the cheap ones are 20% at best. ... so even with the best ones you are still going to be out a fair bit but some suppliers will test them for you and send ones that are at least evenly matched... or even to you spec' ... and some suppliers have them specially made for them and will specify 550K with custom logerithmic tapers and 10% tolerance (there not marked 550 though), that way you never get one lower than 500k.

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Um, how about adjusting the tone settings on your amp?

 

I get where you are coming from, but it just doesn't sound quite the same as having a sparkly sounding pickup, I'm sure it will get you where you need to go...but it's just not the same.

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I have never held the belief that one amp set the same way can accommodate a multitude of different guitars successfully. I have three Fender Strats and each one needs my amp setup differently.

 

The bridge pickup is already going to be brighter than the neck pickup so..... Tune your amp for the neck pickup to sound as if it's the lead pickup. That should make your bridge pickup brighter. Then use the bridge tone control to dial it back.

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I get where you are coming from, but it just doesn't sound quite the same as having a sparkly sounding pickup, I'm sure it will get you where you need to go...but it's just not the same.

+1 [thumbup]

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Adjust the pole pieces up closer to the strings. High E turn the screw one full turn. B turn the screw one and a half turns. G and D two full turns. The A gets one and a half turns. The low E leave where it is to knock off the bass. That should present the pole pieces at equal distance to the strings for the neck radius.

 

If after doing that and adjusting the tone setting on the Amp, your still not getting your tone - It's just not there.

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Um, how about adjusting the tone settings on your amp?

 

The chime just ain't right when you force drive the treble circuit to my ears anyway. Good suggestion however. I do play the Casino thru the "bright" side of my Vox AC15 amp however. The Ric's & Gretsch's too for that matter.

 

Will work on the pole pieces, and order up some CTS pots & maybe a few caps to play with. Those can't be much of a cash outlay.

 

Thanks

 

Aster

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if you are super committed, two things that haven't been mentioned would be a shim under the bridge pickup to raise it and give it more pow, and a different bridge in a brighter alloy. a stainless steel callaham would do it, but that's a global change and not a localized one.

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My Epi 1956 Goldtop Re-issue sounds really good through my Peavey Vypyr Tube 60, especially after swapping out the 6L6's with Tung Sol KT66's. A good modeling amp is a good start toward being able to approximate the sounds you are looking for. There are purists who would disagree, but a little experimentation with various models opens up a lot of territory for getting the "right" sound. Most people are looking for the sound of their favorite player. It's hard to achieve that if you are using an amp that is worlds away from what "that guy" uses.

 

I have settings saved for my 79 Strat, the 56 Goldtop, my Epi Les Paul Custom Flametop, and my G400. It's just too easy to change banks and get there in a second without readjusting everything to taste.

 

In most cases, I use the Plexi model for overdriven solo tones, the Twin model for cleans, and the Badkat model for a chorus and flanged tones. The amp changes personality with each. It's a different world when the amp is flexible. The right amp gives you options for different pickups, body compositions, and for your own playing style.

 

That said, if your pickups are muddy you won't hear the best tonal satisfaction from any amp. I prefer lowered pickups and increased gain. That gives me more wood tone and character from any guitar, as opposed to pickups that are raised for volume. If you have to raise the pickups close to the strings to get volume, you also run the risk of tinny tone with little wood of the guitar mixed in.

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I'm a little confused. I too like lots of treble. My experience of casino's, which includes the elitist, is that treble is not an issue with these guitars and if anything its one of the only guitars I use that I tend to have to turn the treble down on the amp.

This could be an issue with your individual guitar or maybe its just not suited to your amp.

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There are SO many answers here it's rediculas. But in this case, it's a good thing. Not because we don't actually know what the real problem is, but because in my opinion, there's just a lot of good answers and ideas here.

 

Here's a few of mine:

 

First, I start with the guitar itself, the sound BEFORE plugging in. If the guitar isn't bright sounding accoustically, that can be altered using different strings. Bright ones would be GHS Bommers, and warmer would be EB Slinky's. It's worthy of a whole different subject, but it's also important, especially with P-90s. In my experience, while P-90's might be closer to one another regarding different brands and makes, they do seem to be more reactive to different guitars they are in.

 

Another thing worth saying, is that at least for me, I nearly always change amp setting when going from Fender to Gibson, and P-90's- while being single coil, are still very much 'Gibson' leaning in tone, and much closer to a humbucker than a single coil in output and tone. But still at the heart, there isn't an amp or an amp setting that is going to be ideal for Fender types that is also ideal for Gibby types. The ideal setting for each WILL be different.

 

While I don't actually know what the deal is in this particular situation, one thing it might be, and something to be aware of, is the difference in "brightness" might be caused by the different in output. P-90's are definitely on the high side in output, and if the amp is at the threshold, the extra gain could be what is giving more meat to the tone as opposed to clarity.

 

One more thing, that's more of a correction, raising the pups or the poles on the pup will make it less bright, not more. It's worth looking into, but be aware if you want more brightness and clarity by way of pup hieght, go down, not up.

 

Last but not least, overall, it's always best to go with what sounds best, not nessesarily making different guitars all sound the same or work with the same amp settings. But all raods are worth trying, because that's where one's taste and tone come from.

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I'm a little confused. I too like lots of treble. My experience of casino's, which includes the elitist, is that treble is not an issue with these guitars and if anything its one of the only guitars I use that I tend to have to turn the treble down on the amp.

This could be an issue with your individual guitar or maybe its just not suited to your amp.

 

The interesting thing for me is I had owned (but sold a few months after getting the Elitist) a new MIC Standard Casino. I was turning down the tone on that guy for sure (w/ MIC P-90 pups)! Got my new Elitist (liked the build quality, proper wood color back, & deluxe case better for sure. [biggrin]

 

The tone control full up was about what the standard was for brightness about 1/2 full. [confused] I've changed strings on the Elitist a couple of times w/o much change in tone.

 

Aster

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