1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  
    TalkBass.com has been uniting the low end since 1998.  Join us! :)

StellarTone ToneStyler DIY schematic?

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by jefkritz, May 26, 2017.

  1. jefkritz


    Oct 20, 2007
    iowa city, IA
    Hello all,

    I have a bass I built some years back that needs to be rewired. It currently has an active preamp, but it's broken. Instead of replacing it directly, I thought I might get creative, and add a varitone AND tonestyler, in addition to the normal tone knob. Overkill? Probably. But I've got enough holes drilled already, and why not... I'm a pretty competent solderer, and the tonestyler seems great, but a bit pricey for what it is.

    I have two questions:
    * Does anyone have a schematic of how to make a DIY tonestyler?
    * Is a tonestyler basically a varitone with specific capacitors, or is there more to it?

  2. All you have to do is put a different capacitor at each position. Tie all the grounds together, and then wire the common terminal to your tone pot. It's very simple.

    A tonestyler is not a true varitone, because it doesn't have any inductors. You are free to put in an inductor or two, if you want them.
  3. jefkritz


    Oct 20, 2007
    iowa city, IA
    Awesome - thanks. That was my hunch, and looks like I was right! Now to go home and play with all the different capacitors I have, and see which ones sound the best :hyper:
  4. 40Hz

    40Hz Supporting Member

    If you want to go crazy with a passive setup, try this one. It's been posted here previously as well as other bass and wiring forums:

    supervaritone for bass.
    jefkritz likes this.
  5. jefkritz


    Oct 20, 2007
    iowa city, IA
    Nice, thank you. I'll definitely be incorporating elements of that into my design.
  6. Brother Goose

    Brother Goose The Process IS the Reward!

    Dec 4, 2013
    Syracuse NY
    God Is Love
    Good luck with your efforts!

    I have a buddy who did the "home brew varitone" depicted above and we found that only a few of the cap values proved to be really useful... it's always a matter of taste and your results may vary.
  7. 40Hz

    40Hz Supporting Member

    You could skip the fancy capacitor switching schemes and go with a standard tone with maybe two switched capacitor choices - and incorporate a Wilde q-filter for something really different and versatile.

    Don't know what you have for pickups, but don't neglect exploring series/parallel switching and coil splitting options as well. You can often get much more noticeable changes in tone doing that than by just messing around with a passive tone stack.

    Or…you could just say the hell with it and drop around $100-150 and get an Audere preamp and be done with it. More tones than you can find uses for with an onboard preamp.

    But where's the fun and challenge in doing it that way, right? :laugh:

    (Just for the record - I prefer passive basses.) :cool::thumbsup:
  8. jefkritz


    Oct 20, 2007
    iowa city, IA
    I have 2 bartolini music-man replacement humbuckers, each wired up with its own series/parallel/single coil switch. 100% agreed that this will probably have more effect than different sorts of tone knobs. I may do another active preamp at some point, but figured I'd give this a try, as I have a bunch of capacitors and rotary selector switches sitting in the shop already, and the $3 they cost is much easier to justify than $150. Especially considering that I just convinced my wife to let me get an upright :)

Share This Page