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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I had a revelation today. I am a total idiot for not thinking of this sooner. It's so simple yet so usable. I don't like the HPF's because, although they're cool for using your volume knob like a gain knob, or a clean/crunch adjustment, I often play clean jazzy solo stuff with the tone control down. The problem I have is when you've got the tone knob down, and you're working the volume knob, you get a crappy sound because at the tone knob you're cutting the highs, while on the volume side you're letting the highs pass through while reducing the lows. You're sucking "tone" from both ends. If you have a neck single coil it's even worse. Here's my solution:

Instead of having the Hi-Pass cap jumping across the switch hot lug and the volume output lug, I run it through the tone pot. First, the wire that leads to the tone knob has to be coming from the switch hot (1st lug) not the output (center lug) and the tone knob has to be wired in the stock "modern factory guitar" fashion, with the wire from the pot going to the center lug of the tone pot, and the capacitor going from the right lug to ground. This leaves the left lug of the tone pot open. We will use that left lug. The little capacitor that jumps the two lugs on the volume pot needs to be removed from the switch hot lug only leave it connected to the center lug. Finally jump a wire from that open lug on the tone pot to the newly disconnected capacitor wire.

*Here's what it does:
When you have the tone knob all the way up, there's no change. The pickup hot is feeding 100% through the Hi-Pass cap to the center lug, and everything is as it was. But as you turn the tone pot down, the Hi-Pass cap becomes less and less "connected" to the pickup hot (due to the tone pot's resistance increasing) and therefore allows less and less "Hi-Pass" filtering to occur. Eventually, when the tone knob is all the way down, the Hi-Pass is disengaged. I did it today on a RG550 and it's awesome. It now makes the tone knob totally usable even when you're also playing with the volume knob! If anyone can tell me that there's a problem with this, I'm glad to listen, but I don't think there is. If it's been invented before, I appologize! Theoretically, I imagine that a 500k tone pot is ideal, since you want as little coloration as possible when the tone pot is at "10" but I don't think it really matters.

I am both a genious and an idiot. If only I could invent some sort of "Genious-Pass filter" :x
 

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No matter how you fiddle with it, having a cap in the signal line will suck tone. Filtering pulls out some freqs regardless. Here's another solution: rip out the tone knob and all the caps. Then you have a completely flat response coming out of the guitar. Play with the tone all you want at the amp, IMO.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Um, not necessarily. You're right about a tone pot, but a Hi-Pass is actually allowing signal to pass, undiminished by the potentiometer's load. When your volume is all the way up there will be no difference at all whether or not the Hi-Pass filter cap is soldered on. Or if anything, you'd theoretically restore the hi freq lost by the 500Kohms of inherent pot resistance. It's called a Hi-Pass filter but it's actually an "un-filter" the way it's wired in. It's not reducing the lows, rather allowing the highs to pass while the rest of the signal is reduced.

Playing with the tone at the amp is flat out impractical if you need to change sounds dramatically in a hurry. And you'll never get a "tone knob all the way down" sound from turning the treble down on the amp. It's a cutoff, while amp knobs are attenuators. Not to mention amp tone controls are usually post-gain.

Everyone who uses their tone knob on a guitar with a HPF should try this! I've been using it now since the original post and I like it more every time. I still have most guitars without a HPF, but the ones that have it all get this mod.

(sorry for the late reply, I haven't been around. Plus I think this trick deserved a bump)
 

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Don't bother clicking the image. If the link were active it would only take you back here to this thread. The yellow wire is your input to the volume pot and the red wire is the output from the volume pot.

Thanks Frank.



 

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Thanks for posting the graphic!

Frank, I've got a UV7PWH on my hands right now without a high-pass filter, and I've been meaning to add one. I've got the soldering abilities of a medium-rare steak, but if I can work it out I'll try your mod and let you know what I think!

-D
 

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update - anyone got a good source for the capacitators you need for this? The local radio shack came up empty (although I had an interesting conversation with a bassist who worked there). Thanks,

-D
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Well, Ibanez uses a 330pF capacitor, all by it's lonesome. Other people will couple it with a resistor in parallel, to smooth our the taper. But there's no need. I would think you could get a 330pF at a Radio Shack, or at least something close to it. Otherwise any computer or electronics store, or go to a music store that does repairs. All the guitar parts suppliers should have them, so maybe a music store can put a few on their next order.
 

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Frank - blonde moment, when I went in to have my 7620 rewired into this little place in Cambridge, the guy asked me if I wanted one on it. At the time I was so surprised that he (a bassist, and in a shop with more acoustic instruments than anything) knew that most Ibanez's came stock with one of these. I've been meaning to stuick my head back in there to chat with the guy (at the time, he was working on a custom doubleneck 8-string for a guy), so he'd probably have a few I could buy.

Thanks!

-D
 

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Radio shack has them but you have to buy a complete assortment to get them. I have been using the 330pf as a bleed in my guitars for years and was suprised to find out that IBanez used the same valueas it is not very common. Works like a charm though ;)
 

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just did the treble bleed thing between volume and tone pots. BRRRRRRRRRRILLIANT. endless possiblities. luv it on my '90's rg560 ibanez with the satriani dimarzio pups forget exactly what they are have to look at my notes but the same pups as in his signiture model. With the tone knob essentially acting as a variable treble bleed control it's great. thanks
 

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I have this wiring in one of my guitars and is very good, nothing earth shaking, but very good. when you use yours tone and your volume controls at the same time, their interaction is smother.
 

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I really think your idea is clever.

What I like about it is that it (theoretically) acts more like a crossfade between hipass and lopass, so that when you want to darken the sound, you not only shunt highs to ground, but reduce the amount of "treble bleed" at the same time. As you brighten the sound, you simultaneously reduce how much highs are shunted to ground, and direct more signal through the "treble bleed" capacitor. Very slick.

Also, you have the vol pot wired so that the pickup signal goes in the outer lug, and the volume-adjusted signal goes out the centre lug. As is well known, though, when combining two pickups in the "middle" switch position, the vol pots are "coupled" (IOW they are not independant - lowering ONE vol pot to "0" cuts off the volume from BOTH pickups). People sometimes solve this by wiring the vol pots in a "decoupled" fashion (pickup signal to centre lug, volume adjusted signal comes out of outer lug) to keep the two volumes more independant. Have you tried this with your version of "hipass"/"treble bleed"? Even if not, do you know if it would work the same with decoupled vol pots?
 

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I had a revelation today. I am a total idiot for not thinking of this sooner. It's so simple yet so usable. I don't like the HPF's because, although they're cool for using your volume knob like a gain knob, or a clean/crunch adjustment, I often play clean jazzy solo stuff with the tone control down. The problem I have is when you've got the tone knob down, and you're working the volume knob, you get a crappy sound because at the tone knob you're cutting the highs, while on the volume side you're letting the highs pass through while reducing the lows. You're sucking "tone" from both ends. If you have a neck single coil it's even worse. Here's my solution:

Instead of having the Hi-Pass cap jumping across the switch hot lug and the volume output lug, I run it through the tone pot. First, the wire that leads to the tone knob has to be coming from the switch hot (1st lug) not the output (center lug) and the tone knob has to be wired in the stock "modern factory guitar" fashion, with the wire from the pot going to the center lug of the tone pot, and the capacitor going from the right lug to ground. This leaves the left lug of the tone pot open. We will use that left lug. The little capacitor that jumps the two lugs on the volume pot needs to be removed from the switch hot lug only leave it connected to the center lug. Finally jump a wire from that open lug on the tone pot to the newly disconnected capacitor wire.

*Here's what it does:
When you have the tone knob all the way up, there's no change. The pickup hot is feeding 100% through the Hi-Pass cap to the center lug, and everything is as it was. But as you turn the tone pot down, the Hi-Pass cap becomes less and less "connected" to the pickup hot (due to the tone pot's resistance increasing) and therefore allows less and less "Hi-Pass" filtering to occur. Eventually, when the tone knob is all the way down, the Hi-Pass is disengaged. I did it today on a RG550 and it's awesome. It now makes the tone knob totally usable even when you're also playing with the volume knob! If anyone can tell me that there's a problem with this, I'm glad to listen, but I don't think there is. If it's been invented before, I appologize! Theoretically, I imagine that a 500k tone pot is ideal, since you want as little coloration as possible when the tone pot is at "10" but I don't think it really matters.

I am both a genious and an idiot. If only I could invent some sort of "Genious-Pass filter" :x
Hi, do you know of any way that this might this might be incorporated into a Gibson Explore's "two-volume, one-tone" -type configuration?
 

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you don't have to use a single capacitor, you can wire the legs together in parallel of multiple capacitors to get what is called "combined capacitance". Good for dialing things in just right. Now you have a use for all of those capacitors with low values that you got in the bag from Radio Shack.
If you need some photos of what I'm getting at, let me know and I will gladly post some..
 
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