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500k and 250k pots for strat. Which goes where?

Discussion in 'Stratocaster Discussion Forum' started by gitlvr, Feb 6, 2017.

  1. gitlvr

    gitlvr Friend of Leo's

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    Hi!
    I'm planning a strat build from parts I have on hand. Keeping to that, I have one 250k and one 500k pot. I was thinking 250k on the volume, 500k on the tone (.022 or .047 cap. I have both, so whichever one seems best in this scenario)
    I want to keep the pickups from being too bright, but I'm unsure which affects that more, volume pot or tone pot. Keep in mind I play 90% of the time with both pots dimed. If I use one at all, it is usually to turn down a bit in volume.
    Appreciate any advice you can give me.
     
  2. chris m.

    chris m. Poster Extraordinaire

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    If you tend to keep your tone pot dimed I think you will see more of a difference if you use the 250k vs 500k pot for the volume pot. 500k will be brighter, 250k will be not so bright. Unless you like a very bright tone or are using a significantly overwound pickup I would go with the standard and use a 250k pot for the volume pot. You would probably like a 0.022 tone cap more-- you will be able to dial the tone knob back further before getting much change in tone. I.e., you can have finer and subtler adjustments of tone.
     
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  3. gitlvr

    gitlvr Friend of Leo's

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    Thanks. That sounds like the way to go.
    Much appreciated. Chris.
     
  4. Zepfan

    Zepfan Doctor of Teleocity Gold Supporter

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    I would do the 250k for volume and the 500k for tone. The .022 cap will give a brighter tone than the .047 cap. You could attach both caps to a small 2-way toggle to the tone pot for a bright tone boost when you want it or a darker tone when you want it, a small Varitone circuit if you will. Use a 3-way on/off/on toggle for a super bright volume only choice in the middle selection.
     
  5. sjtalon

    sjtalon Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    When you use the pot.

    At 10, it (what cap) doesn't really mean jack. Sure the doctors of electrical engineering will argue the fact to death. In reality, if a person CAN REALLY hear a difference, what little there is probably don't mean jack either way.
     
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  6. Zepfan

    Zepfan Doctor of Teleocity Gold Supporter

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    Oh look, someone wants to start an argument on the net.
     
  7. 5stringsdown

    5stringsdown Tele-Meister

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    Personally every time I have tried a 500 in a strat it has been too bright in a very harsh way.
    Definitely a difference IMHO.
    250s all around for me.
     
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  8. old guitar player

    old guitar player Tele-Afflicted

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  9. Mr. Lumbergh

    Mr. Lumbergh Poster Extraordinaire

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    250's everywhere for a Strat.
     
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  10. sjtalon

    sjtalon Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    Not my intention what so ever.

    Just setting things in perspective, for the folks that may not know these things.

    Just a suggestion, look before you leap, less arguments that way.
     
  11. Anode100

    Anode100 Friend of Leo's

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    ...or - a third way - solder a 470K resistor across the outer lugs of the 500K pot, and you have a (roughly) 250K pot - classic Strat!
     
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  12. LutherBurger

    LutherBurger Poster Extraordinaire

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    I agree with @Mr. Lumbergh, 250k for everything.

    But if you're set on using one 500k and one 250k, I recommend first trying the 500k for volume and 250k for tone. Depending on your pickups and amp, you may find that a 250k tone pot is more useful than 500k.

    I had a 500k tone pot (500k volume, too, and both were audio taper) in a tele with relatively low-output pickups, and it had no effect at all in the top third of its rotation -- I would get full treble around 6. I recently replaced it with a 250k no-load pot, and the tone control now has a more usable sweep. I can hear the tone changing all the way from no-load (which, incidentally, is awesome :)) at the top, down to mud at the bottom.
     
  13. PCollen

    PCollen Friend of Leo's

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    Well, some single coil pickups can handle a 500K volume pot, but most can't without sounding bright and brittle. I'd put a 500K resistor across the two outer terminals of the 500K pot, converting it to 250K. Then you could use either one for tone and or volume with your average single coil pickups.
     
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