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Caps!

Discussion in 'Squier Strat Forum' started by JVjunky, May 28, 2019.

  1. JVjunky

    JVjunky Strat-Talk Member

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    I've seen strat wiring diagrams with caps on both tone pots and diagrams with a cap on the volume pot.

    What's the benefits?
     
  2. sgarnett

    sgarnett Strat-O-Master

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    They serve different purposes. The cap on the tone control is for bleeding treble to ground (depending on the pot setting). Since it is usually on the ground side, both tone controls can share the same cap unless you want different values.

    The cap on the volume control allows some of the upper treble to bypass it. On 10 it has no effect, but as the volume is turned down it will brighten the tone slightly (or help keep it from getting less bright). Some people like this; some don’t.

    Vintage strats (until late 60s or early 70s, not sure) used a 0.1ufd tone cap and did not have a treble bypass cap. There have been various combinations since then.
     
    Last edited: May 28, 2019
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  3. dirocyn

    dirocyn Senior Stratmaster

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    The benefit of separate caps on the tone pots is it lets you choose different values for the separate tone controls. It allows different voicings for the two tone pots.

    The cap on the volume pot is usually a "bright cap." They're used in amps too. When you turn down a volume, it tends to make the tone darker. A bright cap can compensate for that, by allowing some of the treble to bypass the pot. The capacitance value will determine the frequencies that bypass the pot. That same circuit design with a different cap value becomes a bass contour.
     
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  4. sgarnett

    sgarnett Strat-O-Master

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    The American Pro Strat SSS uses a shared 0.022ufd for the tone.

    The treble bypass circuit uses a 1200pf (0.0012ufd) cap. It is complicated somewhat by a 150K resistor in parallel with the cap and a 20K resistor in series with both. This is intended to modify the frequency response of the bypass, presumably to keep the tone more consistent at different volume settings. How close it gets to that goal depends on your pickups, cable, and amp or pedal input impedance, so it is only an approximation at best.
     
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  5. sgarnett

    sgarnett Strat-O-Master

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    Separate tone caps make the most sense to me if the tones are wired to the neck and bridge pickups as in the EJ Strat. However, the EJ itself uses a shared 0.1.
     
  6. Chubbles

    Chubbles Strat-Talker

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