VVT tone pot going on PJ -- taking suggestions

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by Usidore T Blue, May 6, 2018.

Squier PJ tone control replacement

Poll closed May 13, 2018.
  1. Blend

    12 vote(s)
  2. Varitone

    8 vote(s)
  3. Switch

    10 vote(s)
  4. Replace it all with EMGs

    8 vote(s)
  5. Bypass the tone control

    2 vote(s)
  6. Just Volumes

    3 vote(s)
  7. No pots at all

    2 vote(s)
  8. Orange caps are made with carrots

    11 vote(s)
Multiple votes are allowed.
  1. mbelue

    mbelue Supporting Member

    Dec 11, 2010
    I wired my PJ different than most for the purposes of how it interacts with distortion.

    Three-way switch wired Neck/Series/Bridge.

    I have a 500k Volume knob for increased treble output and to give better range to my Tonestyler.

    The Volume push /pull I use to switch my Jazz pickup from series to parallel for its dual coil.

    I have a Stellartone Tonestyler as my only "Tone" knob.

    Generally I have an overdrive pedal set just on the edge of break up with my Jazz pickup solo in parallel. I can then switch just that pickup to series for a touch more output, which gives me more dirt.
    I can then use my pickup selector to select my neck pick up for me dirt.
    Finally I still have the Series option on my pickup selector for even more dirt.

    Then if I'm really being anal I can use my Tonestyler for a number of different resonant humps in the midrange to give me a wide variety of flavors in my distortion.

    Been very happy with this setup and my Dimarzio Model PJ pickups. Kinda want to have this available on all my instruments.
    Great addition to any passive bass.
  2. rereading, I see what you are getting at. I thought at first you were not agreeing with the les paul wiring suggestion.

    I still say BVT or VVT and do however many switches for tone, series/parallel, etc you want or can fit in the control cavity.
  3. Charley Umbria

    Charley Umbria I'm Really a Drummer Supporting Member

    Jan 28, 2011
    Rock City, TN
    I’ve got two P/Js. One is wired VVT and the other is VBT. Both work great. If you tend to turn your volume all the way down on stage a lot, the blend is the way to go, since it only has one volume knob. If you’re used to dealing with two-pickup basses, with two volume controls, then VVT is fine.
  4. gregmon79

    gregmon79 I did it for the muff... Supporting Member

    Dec 20, 2012
    Chicago IL
    I have a set of GZR's in one of my PJs and I absolutely love them. They are one of the best sets of pups I've ever played. I plan on getting a P set for my P. I can't say they blend the best but what PJ set does? They still arent bad though. And the tone sweep is great too. I really really like them for what that's worth.
    Usidore T Blue likes this.
  5. I say go volume/blend/tone. I love having a master volume and a blend on my jazz basses.
    Usidore T Blue likes this.
  6. sissy kathy

    sissy kathy Back to Bass-ics Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 21, 2014
    Arbutus, MD
    You may well be endorsing a superior system to my suggestion. I have have NEVER heard, or seen, an instrument wired as I suggested (with the diodes,) so until someone wires one that way we'll never know. The OP asked for ideas, and that one has been floating around in my head for years; thought I'd give it some air.
    Last edited: May 7, 2018
    Usidore T Blue likes this.
  7. I'd be interested in reading an AC networks [classroom] description of how the diodes would be connected and how the circuit would work. Diodes drop the applied voltage across the PN junction when forward biased and block current flow completely when reverse biased. I'm sure that isn't going to do what you want.
  8. sissy kathy

    sissy kathy Back to Bass-ics Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 21, 2014
    Arbutus, MD
    See post #17 this thread.
  9. JKos

    JKos Supporting Member

    Oct 26, 2010
    Torrance, CA
    Nope. While you are correct that diodes allow current flow in only one direction, the signals in our basses are AC. You would be implementing a half-wave rectifier. It will not work as you seem to think it would.

    - John
  10. sissy kathy

    sissy kathy Back to Bass-ics Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 21, 2014
    Arbutus, MD
    Well,_____! (insert word of your choice.)
  11. devnulljp

    devnulljp Supporting Member

    Oct 13, 2009
    BC, Canada
    Admin on the D*A*M Forum
    I like the 3-way tele-type switch on a PJ, like the Tony Franklin sig. If you don't want
    to route it for the switch, you could always put a Gibson type toggle in one of the pot holes.
    Usidore T Blue likes this.
  12. Don't you have to exceed the forward voltage drop of the diode before it conducts?
    .7v for Silly-cones .3v for Deutscheiums?

    And even if the signal from a pickup (probably needs to be an active?) gets that high, isn't it's still blocked in the reverse direction?

    IDK for sure. I could be wrong about this. If someone thinks I am, give me the tech please.
  13. Bumfuzzle
    sissy kathy likes this.
  14. QED
    sissy kathy likes this.
  15. Killed_by_Death

    Killed_by_Death Snaggletooth Inactive

    I hope you don't wire it like a LP/SG.
    cheechi and Usidore T Blue like this.
  16. Usidore T Blue

    Usidore T Blue

    Jun 28, 2017
    I am open to suggestions. I bet you can tell me why nobody uses a variable capacitor for tone application. Nothing in the right range? Too fragile?
  17. Killed_by_Death

    Killed_by_Death Snaggletooth Inactive

    Their ranges aren't high enough for the application.
    I also think the higher the range, the larger they get. The last time I saw a variable capacitor it was huge:


    This one only goes to 38 pF, that's 0.000038 uF
    Usidore T Blue likes this.
  18. Yup! These are made for radio applications. I got some big ones in a cool antenna tuner for my ham station.
    Operation for that beastie is about 1 MHz to about 30 MHz.
    When your grandpa, or GGPaw was tuning in a station on his big old radio, he was likely crankin on something like this.
  19. testing the limits of the J control cavity
    I started out with the same questions about using a varitone vs other options for tone values. Varitone I think is a poor choice for bass because many basses I play sound best to me at neither full on or off tone, nor at full vol, but somewhere in between. I do prefer tone fully rolled off for some cap values but not others. I personally like to pick cap values that complements the strings I am using (I like darker for flats brighter for rounds). I settled on two cap values, and the option to bypass the tone knob completely.

    As a veteran of tens of component upgrades I can say with absolute 'internet expertise' VVT is the best kind of wiring for passive instruments. Strats should be VVVT, LP should be VVT, It's just the best. From there, add whatever switching you want, like a push/push on/off on each vol knob, series/parallel, tone bypass, basically you can do almost everything while adding minimal extra switches and knobs on most instruments. No need to overcome the limits of the selector switches on the strat (no neck/bridge) or LP (both vol knobs have to be on) it would simplify everything.

    In all seriousness, VVT is the king of KISS. Start with that, or BVT if that's your liking, and then complicate it from there.
  20. I too have found it easy to go overboard with bass mods. Just about every time I bow to the creeping featurism, I find myself eventually going back to less complicated arrangements.
    Usidore T Blue and cheechi like this.
  21. Primary

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    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

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