Video Drops PLURAL! All About Tone Controls: Parts 1 AND 2!...

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basshack
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Re: Video Drops PLURAL! All About Tone Controls: Parts 1 AND 2!...

Post by basshack » 18 Oct 2018, 22:19

Have to agree with Jeremy Rob, you do sell yourself short. You present well in that it's straight up, a little bit funny and well edited.

Having the council outside did mess with the recording though, having brought those big orange drops just recently, to replace the smaller green caps I thought I got the wrong values on, I'm sure that you'd hear the difference if you were in a quieter environment. They'd have to make a difference, they are so much bigger, orange and more expensive..... and boy were they expensive in comparison. :red face
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Re: Video Drops PLURAL! All About Tone Controls: Parts 1 AND 2!...

Post by PilbaraBass » 19 Oct 2018, 16:21

^ l like the fact that he had the council outside. Never EVER let the council inside! ;)
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Classic5
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Re: Video Drops PLURAL! All About Tone Controls: Parts 1 AND 2!...

Post by Classic5 » 19 Oct 2018, 21:56

How did I manage to miss this.

Just watched video 1. You are so totally a mad scientist Rob. Love it :thumbup:

EDIT: just watched video 2 as well which I thought was fantastic. I like your video productions Rob, you've even convinced me to buy a soldering iron and a multimeter. I just have to start using them now :lol:
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Re: Video Drops PLURAL! All About Tone Controls: Parts 1 AND 2!...

Post by bassbass » 21 Oct 2018, 21:02

Thanks for all the kind words guys...
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Re: Video Drops PLURAL! All About Tone Controls: Parts 1 AND 2!...

Post by cleary » 22 Oct 2018, 13:31

I also found these really useful Rob, thanks for the info and the surprising outcomes.

I feel like an obvious question that hasn't been asked yet - if most of us are only using the tone pot before the cap kicks in, do different tone pots give different audio aesthetic results?
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Re: Video Drops PLURAL! All About Tone Controls: Parts 1 AND 2!...

Post by drbass » 22 Oct 2018, 14:13

Really love the way you present this stuff, Rob - and still, when it comes to electronics my brain short-circuits, pretty much straight away and totally ... . Will keep trying but I'm not sure there's any sort of hope.

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Re: Video Drops PLURAL! All About Tone Controls: Parts 1 AND 2!...

Post by bassbass » 23 Oct 2018, 19:19

if most of us are only using the tone pot before the cap kicks in, do different tone pots give different audio aesthetic results?
Good q. Well in a passive tone control, the pot is wired as a simple variable resistance, in series with the cap. That's why just two of the lugs are used. So that means, that if you use, say a 500K audio taper pot, then by winding it back to about 80% (give or take), its resistance is 250K, and from there, it's more or less the same, but compressed into a smaller sweep. OTOH, shifting from 250K to 500K reduces the load on the pickup, and therefore you'll have a tiny amount more treble when the pot is dimed.
and still, when it comes to electronics my brain short-circuits, pretty much straight away and totally ... . Will keep trying but I'm not sure there's any sort of hope.
Ha ha, no worries Michael! It is pretty confusing for sure all this. I'm just lucky because I started early. (Rewound a pickup when I was about 16 IIRC!) The main thing is that a pickup isn't just an entity on its own with its own sound and response. The tone (especially the treble response) of a pickup is a product of the pickup plus its resistive and capacitive load. Stingrays are a great example of this. Both the classic 70's 2-band and the 90's 3-band preamps have close to a flat response with the controls centred. (Well except for the sub bass roll-off of the 3-band.) But the same pickup, wired directly to either pre, will sound very different in the treble, due to the different loads the two preamps offer. The 2-band as a lower input z (akin to the resistive load of pots), and the 3-band has a huge capacitive load. (Actually has a cap across its input.) So the 2-band stingrays have a treble response that reaches higher into the audio spectrum but it is tamed by that lower impedance. But the 3-band 'rays have more treble on tap, but it peaks early, around 3-4khz typically, then rolls off sharply.
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Classic5
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Re: Video Drops PLURAL! All About Tone Controls: Parts 1 AND 2!...

Post by Classic5 » 23 Oct 2018, 20:09

bassbass wrote:
23 Oct 2018, 19:19
if most of us are only using the tone pot before the cap kicks in, do different tone pots give different audio aesthetic results?
Good q. Well in a passive tone control, the pot is wired as a simple variable resistance, in series with the cap. That's why just two of the lugs are used. So that means, that if you use, say a 500K audio taper pot, then by winding it back to about 80% (give or take), its resistance is 250K, and from there, it's more or less the same, but compressed into a smaller sweep. OTOH, shifting from 250K to 500K reduces the load on the pickup, and therefore you'll have a tiny amount more treble when the pot is dimed.
Very interesting point about the 500K pots. All my basses except for one have 250k pots. One bass however has 500K pots and Bartolini soapbars. It's a passive bass with a very broad sound spectrum. It can sound very thick but the 500K pots also give it a bigger treble response. For a passive bass it's got a huge tonal range and the 500K pots are a big factor, as well as the positioning of the pickups (one is right up against the bridge and the other is very close to the fretboard).
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Re: Video Drops PLURAL! All About Tone Controls: Parts 1 AND 2!...

Post by WestOfBen » 24 Oct 2018, 12:06

Really awesome videos man! Scientific method with personality!

Helps me understand my Bart P/J fretless. I put together some kind of wiring from three different diagrams and while it sounds fantastic, I don't think the tone rolled back is actually "dubby" enough, still too much treble clarity. Thanks to you I think I know what I need to do next.

When I retrofitted my 2000 model Ric 4003 with the push-pull treble pickup cap mod, I experimented with types of caps. I tried orange drops, grey rectangular things and a vintage type Sprague oil/paper jobby. I don't have "super ears" or even superior ears to anyone else, but tone-wise there was a significant difference between the three, which may get some people riled up. Your point is bang on the money, ultimately it is my musical taste and preference so... so what? Still, I heard what I heard.

The orange drop was better than the grey thing, slightly less harsh mid-high, presumably around the resonant peak. Both modern caps were nothing compared to the Sprague though, so I settled on it. No increase in treble per se, no loss against the orange and grey, but it is less brittle/harsh and the mids are more musical. This is all due to that comb filtering stuff isn't it? That was with the tone on full. With tone rolled back in increments I thought the Sprague still sounded better than both orange and grey, although not to a degree where it was night and day.

Back to the comb filtering, I guess it just says that it isn't a question of the quality of the caps, but exactly what value each cap truly holds. I didn't even think to measure them, they were all .047 something. I know they were all more or less the same value because as your video demonstrates, any significant value change would have been obvious with tone rolled back. But it does suggest enough of a variance that the Sprague filtered more musically.

Now Rics possess this capacitor inline with the bridge/treble pickup, so that's a totally different idea to your demonstration anyway, no?
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