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Volume pots

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by Coolhandjjl, May 23, 2011.


  1. Coolhandjjl

    Coolhandjjl Supporting Member

    Oct 13, 2010
    Appleton
    I've a Ric 4003, has two single coil pups with a separate volume and tone pot for each pickup. When both pups are on, it is a parallel pup circuitry.

    I'm aware of the ol' rule of thumb, use 250K for single coil, 500K for humbuckers. I'm guessing that is for the more critical tone pots?

    Anyone ever has any issues using 500K pots in the volume position for single coil pups?
     
  2. AFAIK, some Rics used 330k pots.

    Pot values are pretty much a personal preference. 500ks will be brighter/hotter than 250ks, though the difference is very subtle.
    Rics are naturally pretty bright, though, so you may not want the extra treble.
     
  3. Coolhandjjl

    Coolhandjjl Supporting Member

    Oct 13, 2010
    Appleton
    Thanks. So if I understand this properly, higher values in volume pots also increase the amount of treble, just like higher values in the tone pots do.
     
  4. Testing_123

    Testing_123

    Jan 23, 2011
    WMass, USA
    Yes, sort of.

    To be more specific, higher value potentiometers sound brighter at full volume because they preserve more treble freqs in the signal compared to lower value volume pots.

    A 500k pot does not increase treble vs. a 250k pot (pots don't add - they only attenuate). Both will lose some frequencies (focused at the higher ranges), but the higher resistance pot loses less.
     
  5. Coolhandjjl

    Coolhandjjl Supporting Member

    Oct 13, 2010
    Appleton
    Gotcha. A 500 is close to 'full throttle bright', where-as a 250 is already taming things down a bit.
     
  6. Testing_123

    Testing_123

    Jan 23, 2011
    WMass, USA
    Affirmative.

    It has to do with the pot setup (serving as a voltage divider) and impedance issues.

    If someone really needed the fullest range signal preserved from passive pickups, they could go for a 1 meg or greater volume pot, or bypass pots altogether and wire direct from pickups to output jack. To most folks' ears, the result would sound a bit spiky and harsh, so it is typically worth the mild loss of high freqs in exchange for adjustable volume and tone controls.
     
  7. Coolhandjjl

    Coolhandjjl Supporting Member

    Oct 13, 2010
    Appleton
    Thanks again!
     

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