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Author Topic: Another Vintage v Modern Wiring Topic  (Read 2401 times)

AndyR

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Another Vintage v Modern Wiring Topic
« on: July 07, 2008, 01:31:17 PM »
I found something over the weekend that I thought might be helpful if you're wondering about vintage versus modern wiring for LP/SG type guitars.

I've done a search, and it is covered in at least one of the earlier topics http://bareknucklepickups.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=10434.0 (this one contains the set of diagrams I used for rewiring a few months back - nice one Twinfan) - but it wasn't obvious to me what would happen when I read these.

When I first put BKPs in two of my guitars (Epi LP - Mules and Epi SG - Riff Raffs), I decided to to rewire with CTS pots etc. I also decided to go for the vintage wiring because, er, I like "vintage"  :roll:

From my experience:
  • You do get more top-end from the vintage wiring.
  • You also get the interraction between vol/tone that the above thread describes, but this interraction might be far worse than you imagine if you use the volume and tone controls a lot.

What I was finding was (vintage wiring) if a tone control is activated (ie turned down at all) then the associated volume control has a "step" in it. On mine, this occured around 8.5. If the pickup was selected on its own, and I changed the volume while the note was ringing, this actually sounded like a bad pot, you almost get a "crackle" as you turn the pot.

If I was in the middle position, smooth blending of the pickups was not at all easy to achieve.

This "step" in the volume control disappears when the associated tone control is not activated (ie on 10). I'm guessing that the position of the "step" will change depending on the values of the capacitors you use in the tone circuit.

When I swapped the Riff Raffs out of the SG, and replaced them with MQs, the effect was even more noticable. With my amp tones, above the 8.5 step gave me crunch/distortion, below it gave me clean and a big volume drop - and nowhere in-between  :(. I was even having trouble figuring out how to use (and therefore liking) the MQs because of it.

So at the weekend - without going back and rereading the threads - I decided to change back to modern wiring.

I now have a very slight loss of top-end (hardly noticable for how I use things, it might even be my imagination), and suddenly the volume controls behave smoothly and beautifully for me. And my love affair with MQs has been rekindled! :D

If, like me, you use the volume and tone controls a lot - on the fly, mid performance - you might well find that although vintage gives you "more tone", your controls become less usable.

Of course, you'll never really know unless you give it a go - but try not to do what I did (sit around for a couple of months thinking you've got some duff CTS pots!!)  :lol:  :oops:
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Will

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Re: Another Vintage v Modern Wiring Topic
« Reply #1 on: July 07, 2008, 02:30:19 PM »
So... I am slightly unclear, modern wiring doesn't cut volume out in the middle position when one pickup vol is off?
To me, that seems kinda cr@ppy. No way to have that function with the better pot range of 'modern'

Twinfan

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Re: Another Vintage v Modern Wiring Topic
« Reply #2 on: July 07, 2008, 02:33:14 PM »
Modern wiring will still do that Will.

AndyR

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Re: Another Vintage v Modern Wiring Topic
« Reply #3 on: July 07, 2008, 02:42:31 PM »
Sorry to confuse the issue, Will - Yep, both versions cut the volume in the middle position if one vol is all the way down.

What I'm saying is that "vintage" meant the volumes didn't operate smoothly for me when the connected tone was turned down at all.

For me a volume control had a "step" or "jump" (Loud -> Quiet, or vice versa)  at around 8.5 when the tone was anything but 10.

The way I use tone controls, there was no way to get to a volume between the "Loud" and "Quiet" - so the vintage wiring ended up unusable for me.

What I found amusing, and possibly helpful for others - is that for two months I thought I'd got some dodgy CTS pots (or that I'd fried them with my soldering!)
« Last Edit: July 07, 2008, 02:47:29 PM by AndyR »
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Will

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Re: Another Vintage v Modern Wiring Topic
« Reply #4 on: July 07, 2008, 02:52:04 PM »
Sorry to confuse the issue, Will - Yep, both versions cut the volume in the middle position if one vol is all the way down.

What I'm saying is that "vintage" meant the volumes didn't operate smoothly for me when the connected tone was turned down at all.

For me a volume control had a "step" or "jump" (Loud -> Quiet, or vice versa)  at around 8.5 when the tone was anything but 10.

Thanks, it was the last thread that confused me, and I just wanted to clarify, thanks TF and Andy.
You could always do the Warren Haynes thing, doesn't he have a little circuit built in to retain the treble?

AndyR

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Re: Another Vintage v Modern Wiring Topic
« Reply #5 on: July 07, 2008, 02:59:39 PM »
Would that be like a treble-bleed capacitor across the volume pot Will?

I tried that years ago and discovered that I actually use the fact that rolling off volume loses you some treble - with a treble bleed in place it just didn't seem natural!

Anyway, I've no problems with top-end, there's plenty there from the BKPs already. I just thought I'd like vintage wiring because it was more "vintage" - and then I'd forgotten I'd done it!

Actually, on the treble bleed subject - Baja tele owners - I opened mine up the other day, and there is something looking suspiciously like a treble bleed cap in there... I didn't mess with it (yet!) because it all looks rather complicated what with the four-way switch and S-1 vol pot etc...
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Will

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Re: Another Vintage v Modern Wiring Topic
« Reply #6 on: July 07, 2008, 03:06:02 PM »
CAE unity gain buffer preamp, apparently also keeps a strong signal through many FX
http://www.caesound.com/cae_prod_new.html

Oli

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Re: Another Vintage v Modern Wiring Topic
« Reply #7 on: July 08, 2008, 12:08:51 AM »
What's a good, reputable source of NOS caps? I'm looking to replace the ones currently in my LP, but i'm not particularly well versed on the different brands and their effects.

Cheers
Nailbomb, VHII, Warpig 7, MQ, Black Dog, 10th Anniversary

HTH AMPS

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Re: Another Vintage v Modern Wiring Topic
« Reply #8 on: July 08, 2008, 12:22:54 AM »
What's a good, reputable source of NOS caps? I'm looking to replace the ones currently in my LP, but i'm not particularly well versed on the different brands and their effects.

Cheers

I get mine off a guy on ebay in the US called Sir Gatsby... good price, caps are tested and measure in spec, he's quick getting the caps out to you and doesn't screw you on postage costs.  I've had a few sets of Sprague Black Beauties from him and also a real deal set of NOS Bumble Bee caps.

sgmypod

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Re: Another Vintage v Modern Wiring Topic
« Reply #9 on: August 11, 2008, 04:17:45 PM »
Can't find him on ebay
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HTH AMPS

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Re: Another Vintage v Modern Wiring Topic
« Reply #10 on: August 11, 2008, 08:27:21 PM »
Can't find him on ebay

I'll PM his details to you once I'm out of hospital - was only speaking to him a couple of weeks ago getting caps for my LP jr.

sgmypod

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Re: Another Vintage v Modern Wiring Topic
« Reply #11 on: August 12, 2008, 06:56:09 PM »
Thanks
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