Gibson & Epiphone Guitar Forum
Registered Member Login:
Not a member? Register today!



Welcome to the Gibson & Epiphone Guitar Forum.

You're going to love it here. We've got Gibson & Epiphone forums, member galleries, classified ads, and more for you here.
You can read posts as a guest but posting here requires registration. But, don't worry, registering is quick, easy and painless. Why not register today?




Notices

Mods and Tech Talk Talk "tech" and modding your Gibson, Epi or any other guitar here.

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old March 11th, 2017, 09:02 AM   #1 (permalink)
Humbucker
 
AlanBiker's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2016
Location: Shrewsbury, UK
Age: 65
Posts: 151
Capacitor upgrade?

I took a peek at the wiring in my 2016 Traditional and saw that it uses small ceramic capacitors, I know it's only very low voltage and if you just leave the tone knobs on 10 then they don't actually do anything. But - I do use my volume and tone knobs to change the sound so I was wondering if it would be worth putting in a pair of orange drops? Bumblebees are out of the question as Gibson wants stupid money for their replicas - almost 30 each!!

Alan

__________________
2016 Gibson LP Traditional
2014 Gibson ES-339
2014 Gibson LPJ
2015 Fender Deluxe Roadhouse Strat
AlanBiker is offline Offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 11th, 2017, 10:57 AM   #2 (permalink)
Poster Extroadinare
 
SAguitar's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: Oregon, USA
Posts: 2,864
I frequently replace those little boogers with Orange Drops when I'm inside the cavity. It's an easy and relatively inexpensive change. I really don't know if I can hear any marked improvement in sound or tone, but it makes me feel better when I look in there!

I also install a treble bleed circuit on all my volume potentiometers, that upgrade is imperative for my guitars.

I do have some friends that feverishly believe in changing out the caps for more spendy versions. And there are guys like Eric Johnson that say they can hear the difference between different brands of batteries in their effects pedals!
__________________
Some contend that rock 'n roll is bad for the body & bad for the soul.
Bad for the heart, bad for the mind, bad for the deaf & bad for the blind.
It makes some men crazy and they talk like fools.
Makes some men crazy and they start to drool.
SAguitar is offline Offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 11th, 2017, 11:04 AM   #3 (permalink)
Humbucker
 
AlanBiker's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2016
Location: Shrewsbury, UK
Age: 65
Posts: 151
Thanks for the quick response, I think now that I know what is in there it will bug me until I upgrade them and it's quite a cheap and easy mod. Is the treble bleed mod the one where you have a cap and a resistor in parallel? what values do you use?

Alan
__________________
2016 Gibson LP Traditional
2014 Gibson ES-339
2014 Gibson LPJ
2015 Fender Deluxe Roadhouse Strat
AlanBiker is offline Offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 12th, 2017, 04:52 AM   #4 (permalink)
Poster Extroadinare
 
johnreardon's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: UK
Age: 71
Posts: 3,795
Never changed any of the electronics in my LPs and I do use all knobs to help my sound as I never use pedals just going 'bareback' into amps. OK, most of them are Custom Shop so probably have quite good components.

I am just wary of when people talk about 'upgrading' something. Changing things in guitars do not always make them sound 'better'. Quite often people believe they hear a difference to help justify their investment.

Nothing wrong with modding guitars for the challenge or experimentation; in fact I did it myself with a Baja Tele and a PRS SC I used to have. But to be honest, they didn't sound or play any different after the changes. As for value when I came to sell, it cost me a little bit even though I had kept the original bits.

I prefer to think of this process as 'changing' or 'modification' rather than 'upgrading'
__________________
John

http://www.thepiecesofmind.com/

Last edited by johnreardon; March 12th, 2017 at 09:24 AM.
johnreardon is offline Offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 12th, 2017, 08:36 AM   #5 (permalink)
Humbucker
 
AlanBiker's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2016
Location: Shrewsbury, UK
Age: 65
Posts: 151
I'm not trying to make the guitar sound "better" - I know those ceramic caps are not the most reliable but are only just about good enough so I thought I might use an uprated part for reliability and longevity.

Alan
__________________
2016 Gibson LP Traditional
2014 Gibson ES-339
2014 Gibson LPJ
2015 Fender Deluxe Roadhouse Strat
AlanBiker is offline Offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 12th, 2017, 08:44 AM   #6 (permalink)
Poster Extroadinare
 
Infant's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Stoney Creek, Ontario, Canada
Age: 60
Posts: 4,278
I tend to agree with John here. I work at an electronics company and we design and build circuits for automotive, HVAC and medical customers. When it comes to automotive and medical, everything is stringently tested. Automotive is the worst as they want perfect parts at the lowest price possible. When it comes to resistors and caps, 99.9% of the time,the cheapest do the same job as the more expensive ones, and that's in a powered circuit. In a passive state, like in a guitar, it's just acting as a filter. I've changed ceramic caps to polys and found no difference in tone. Therefore, I don't bother making these kinds of changes.

However, when it comes to pots, switches and jacks, I want good full size pots and Switchcraft jacks and switches. Full size CTS and Alphas are both good quality switches but you can still get the odd dud. They are all made in Mexico or the far East these days. Everyone swears by CTS but I've found some inconsistencies in the amount of effort required to turn them. All the Alphas that I've had have been flawless. However I've never had either actually fail. That's my 2 cents for what it's worth.

Sent from my SM-T530NU using Tapatalk
__________________
Take Care
Rob
_________________________________________
We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.
Infant is offline Offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 12th, 2017, 08:59 AM   #7 (permalink)
Humbucker
 
AlanBiker's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2016
Location: Shrewsbury, UK
Age: 65
Posts: 151
Thanks Rob, I suppose in an unpowered circuit there may be no point. As I said I'm not after a change in sound - I like it just the way it is but seeing good quality pots and those tiny ceramic caps was a bit of a surprise. I'll just leave it as is - it aint broke.



Alan
__________________
2016 Gibson LP Traditional
2014 Gibson ES-339
2014 Gibson LPJ
2015 Fender Deluxe Roadhouse Strat
AlanBiker is offline Offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 12th, 2017, 09:01 PM   #8 (permalink)
Poster Extroadinare
 
SAguitar's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: Oregon, USA
Posts: 2,864
Oh no! Look at those unsexy little caps in there! How can you deal with that?
Seriously, although I routinely replace those things with Orange Drops, they really just "look" better, and only then to someone who's peaking in the control cavity.

As far as the treble bleed circuit thing, I really do like them. I've had a lot of guitars that get darker (lose highs) when you roll them back off of full volume, and a treble bleed can help with that. Even with great potentiometers, I've experienced that and I like my guitars to preserve the same overall tone when I turn them down. I really am not enough an electronic whiz to tell you what the values are. I generally just buy them for a couple of bucks off Ebay and solder them in.
__________________
Some contend that rock 'n roll is bad for the body & bad for the soul.
Bad for the heart, bad for the mind, bad for the deaf & bad for the blind.
It makes some men crazy and they talk like fools.
Makes some men crazy and they start to drool.
SAguitar is offline Offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 14th, 2017, 07:02 PM   #9 (permalink)
Gibson Talker
 
Join Date: May 2015
Location: Birmingham UK
Posts: 95
Do expensive caps make a difference?

Do expensive caps make a difference in guitar circuits? I think it's debatable in my experience and even the little ceramics on the all-in-one circuit boards they are putting in the latest Gibsons seem to work ok. But yes, the big ones do look better!
Seen a couple of sensible videos on caps on YouTube. It would suggest there is no magic "tone" to capacitance, just more or less accuracy and the better known makes are closer in tolerance to their quoted value.
Another vid shows an expensive "reissue" repro to be a small cap inside a mocked up copy of an original! For my money, more expensive caps and pots are more accurate and that's what we may be hearing.
MickeyB is offline Offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 14th, 2017, 08:41 PM   #10 (permalink)
Poster Extroadinare
 
Infant's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Stoney Creek, Ontario, Canada
Age: 60
Posts: 4,278
I don't think you will hear the difference between +/-10% and +/-5% on such a small value cap. Once you add in the capacitance of your 10', 15' or 20' cable, the tolerances of all the components in your amp etc. I'm surprised anyone ever finds something they like. As always, just my 2 cents

Sent from my SM-T530NU using Tapatalk
__________________
Take Care
Rob
_________________________________________
We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.
Infant is offline Offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off
Forum Jump

» Gibson-Talk Photos
Long-lost memories
novectors
Long-lost memories
Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.2.2