Linear pots for tone control

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by Ron W., Jun 30, 2008.

  1. Ron W.

    Ron W.

    Jun 9, 2008
    Planet P
    I notice some on here and some parts suppliers are recommemding linear pots over audio tapers for tone control.

    Why is that?

    I don't find going from treble to maximum bass that quickly to be much control over my tone.

    I always use audio tapers but is there an actual reason for using linear for the tone controls?
  2. mjolnir

    mjolnir Thor's Hammer 2.1.3beta

    Jun 15, 2006
    Houston, TX
    You know, I've always wondered this myself... I could be very wrong, but I think it's because linear pots roll off the frequencies specified by the cap in an even flow, whereas an audio log pot would essentially roll off massive amounts at first, then adjust down to nothing the closer to complete roll-off you get.

    I honestly couldn't tell you with any certainty how right I am though.
  3. Bassamatic

    Bassamatic keepin' the beat since the 60's

    Audio taper pots DO change in a non-linear fashion - it is kind of a logarithmic curve. The reason is that our ears HEAR level changes in the same curve, and audio taper pots try to match this so it seems even. When using a linear pot for audio, the change seems to happen very abruptly at one end.

    I have seen both ways done - I think that you have to try it to see what "feels" right to you. Perhaps for Tone the change is not so drastic - I haven't noticed it being unacceptable either way.