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2 volume 2 tone impossibility?

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by ShonenCello, Aug 10, 2013.

  1. ShonenCello


    Sep 21, 2011
    A technician who is doing work on my EB-0 project has just called me up to tell me that 2 volumes and 2 tones are not possible.

    He says turning down one vol will always shut down both pickups. And that this configuration is never done.

    Using this attached diagram and alligator clips I had this working a few days ago. So I'm really suspicious of what he's telling me.

    Can anyone give their opinion on this? I need some facts before I go back to him and I start demanding things.


    Just in case your wondering, I've added a second pickup.

    Attached Files:

  2. ctmullins

    ctmullins fueled by beer and coconut Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 18, 2008
    MS Gulf Coast
    I'm highly opinionated and extremely self-assured
    2 volumes with 1 tone is done all the time. Look up the standard Jazz wiring for reference. Your guy hasn't done enough research.
  3. 39-Bassist


    Jul 7, 2010
    Endorsing Artist for: Brace Audio; Duncan Pickups; Line6, Hipshot, GHS Strings, Somnium Guitars
    the wiring he is referring to is the basic Les Paul wiring....Hate it!
  4. ShonenCello


    Sep 21, 2011
    2 volume 2 tone is the problem unless I'm missing your point.
  5. ShonenCello


    Sep 21, 2011
    That's the diagram I'm using.

    Can you suggest another?
  6. jj4001


    Dec 27, 2010
    Providence, RI
    Two vol. two tone on a Ricky. Dunno if that's relevant here.
  7. ShonenCello


    Sep 21, 2011
    Yeah. It doesn't seem impossible, just not what he is used to.
  8. Stacked knob Jazz - 2V, 2T.

    Maybe find a new guy.
    patrickhowell likes this.
  9. Yeah the old jazz basses use 2V and 2T.
    Not sure that guy knows what he's doing.
  10. fjadams


    Jun 7, 2011
    Danbury, CT

    My highly modded Jaguar SS has VT/VT, my highly modded Flying V has VT/VT, my factory Gretsch has VT/VT and my factory Guild has VT/VT.

    The electronics on every one of them seemingly work properly. I can adjust the volume and tone on each pickup without affecting the other one. I suggest you find somebody that actually knows what they're doing with your bass. I know I wouldn't trust him with one of mine.
  11. ShonenCello


    Sep 21, 2011
    Just got off the phone with him and gave him some of the arguments here and now he says it's OK come pick it up.

    Thanks everyone. A little knowledge is a dangerous thing.
  12. There are two ways to wire a volume pot. If the wiper terminal is used as the output, then your tech is correct. The solution, however, is to use the wiper terminals as inputs, like on Jazz basses.
  13. Stealth


    Feb 5, 2008
    Zagreb, Croatia
    Here's how two volumes and two tones can work together.


    As line6man explained, if the wiper terminal is the input (it accepts the wire from the pickup) then the volume controls act independently.

    Note the two resistors. If you include those two, your tone controls will only affect the pickup they're supposed to, but the bass won't be as loud and you'll have to turn up the gain a bit. If you don't include them, there will be no loss of output, but either tone control will affect both pickups.

    Incidentally, I think you explained this trick to me as well, line6man.
    Torrente Cro likes this.
  14. ShonenCello


    Sep 21, 2011
    Ah OK, I'm seeing that now.
    I'm picking up the bass today and will examine what he's done.

  15. Hopkins

    Hopkins Supporting Member Commercial User

    Nov 17, 2010
    Houston Tx
    Owner/Builder @Hopkins Guitars

    What if you replaced those resistors with diodes? Wouldn't that keep the tone controls separate?
  16. You don't want diodes on an audio signal circuit unless you want severe distortion.
  17. Hopkins

    Hopkins Supporting Member Commercial User

    Nov 17, 2010
    Houston Tx
    Owner/Builder @Hopkins Guitars
    I didnt know that, I was just thinking they might work like a check valve keeping the two circuits separate behind them. I didnt know they would distort the signal.
  18. Angel LaHash

    Angel LaHash

    Aug 24, 2012
    A Blend with a Master Volume

    The Blend will act like the two Volumes getting a balance how you want it
    and then volume can drop it down (tho most seem to leave it on 10 there might not have a volume pot, so many use the volume on the AMP)
  19. But you will want to use the wiper terminals are outputs, when using resistors. The resistors prevent the volume pots from dropping the output impedance to zero, so you still have the option to use the wiper terminals as outputs to avoid the variable impedance load on the pickups from the pots.
  20. Diodes don't work the way you are thinking. They pass positive and block negative, in one direction, and pass negative and block positive in the other. So what you will have is half-wave rectification.
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