No Load Tone Pot

Discussion in 'Technical Side of Things' started by calebaaron666, May 7, 2019.

  1. calebaaron666

    calebaaron666 Country Gent

    Aug 15, 2018
    Portland, Maine
    Okay smarties,
    If one was thinking of adding a no load tone pot to their 5420, which pot would one get?

    I hate the tone knob. It’s useless to me. I like the idea of turning the knob to a click where it’s completely bypassed like one of them fancy Gretsch Players Edition guitars.
     
  2. section2

    section2 Synchromatic

    944
    Dec 21, 2016
    Toronto
    I put CTS 500k audio taper no-load tone pots in my 5620T, and I'm happy with them. Big difference from the stock pots.
     
  3. calebaaron666

    calebaaron666 Country Gent

    Aug 15, 2018
    Portland, Maine
    Thanx! That’s what i needed to know.
     
    section2 likes this.
  4. section2

    section2 Synchromatic

    944
    Dec 21, 2016
    Toronto
    sh4rkbyt3, pmac11 and calebaaron666 like this.
  5. calebaaron666

    calebaaron666 Country Gent

    Aug 15, 2018
    Portland, Maine
    Ain’t that adventurous. I’d actually rather not have a tone knob at all, but I figure the no load is the next best thing for me.
     
    section2 likes this.
  6. section2

    section2 Synchromatic

    944
    Dec 21, 2016
    Toronto
    I hear you. I pulled the tone knob right out of my G3900, and it made a big difference to the sound. So much more clarity!
     
    calebaaron666 likes this.
  7. pmac11

    pmac11 Country Gent

    Age:
    55
    Mar 4, 2018
    Toronto, Ontario
    Why not just leave it in the guitar but disconnect it from the circuit? An unloaded tone pot.

    Sent from my SM-T560NU using Tapatalk
     
  8. calebaaron666

    calebaaron666 Country Gent

    Aug 15, 2018
    Portland, Maine
    That’s a good suggestion. I did think of that, but if I’m gonna have a knob I might as well have it work. The no load pot is cheap enough.
     
    section2 likes this.
  9. section2

    section2 Synchromatic

    944
    Dec 21, 2016
    Toronto
    Oh, and I'd suggest a .022u capacitor. I used .033u caps on mine, and I find that they're far too muddy when rolled all the way off.
     
  10. calebaaron666

    calebaaron666 Country Gent

    Aug 15, 2018
    Portland, Maine
    I dunno if I’ve ever rolled the tone down on purpose.
    Really, the only knob I use is the neck volume knob, cuz I roll it down a bit when I play in the middle position.
    Oh, and I use the master volume I suppose.
     
    section2 likes this.
  11. Synchro

    Synchro The artist formerly known as: Synchro Staff Member

    Jun 2, 2008
    Tucson
    Admin Post
    Honestly, I wouldn't bother. I've done no-load tone pots and the audible difference was virtually nil.
     
    Hammerhead likes this.
  12. section2

    section2 Synchromatic

    944
    Dec 21, 2016
    Toronto
    That's all I use too. The only time I touch the tone knob is when I'm looking for that thick, syrupy, Gibsony lead tone... but then I use an LP-style guitar, not a Gretsch.
     
    calebaaron666 likes this.
  13. section2

    section2 Synchromatic

    944
    Dec 21, 2016
    Toronto
    Mine were a noticable upgrade over the stock pots... but I don't know whether that's because they're no-load pots, or because the stock pots were terrible. (The stocks were linear taper, and I just can't get along with linear pots.)
     
  14. Synchro

    Synchro The artist formerly known as: Synchro Staff Member

    Jun 2, 2008
    Tucson
    Admin Post
    Linear taper is a big load of no-fun, that's for sure.
     
    pmac11 and section2 like this.
  15. calebaaron666

    calebaaron666 Country Gent

    Aug 15, 2018
    Portland, Maine
    Would you say bypassing the tone knob completely would be the better option tone wise?
     
  16. Synchro

    Synchro The artist formerly known as: Synchro Staff Member

    Jun 2, 2008
    Tucson
    Admin Post
    If you will never use the tone control, you can just snip on lead of the cap and there’s zero load. However, my personal experience has been that there’s not all that much difference between a no-load circuit and a 500k tone pot turned all the way up.
     
  17. calebaaron666

    calebaaron666 Country Gent

    Aug 15, 2018
    Portland, Maine
    Ooooooooh, okay i think i getcha. So I could even just pull the tone pot up through the f-hole and snip the cap off and then it’s null and void?
     
  18. Synchro

    Synchro The artist formerly known as: Synchro Staff Member

    Jun 2, 2008
    Tucson
    Admin Post
    That would do it. The pot would have no path to ground, so it would be essentially ineffective. There’s only one path for the flow of current when the cap is removed, so it wouldn’t do anything.
     
  19. calebaaron666

    calebaaron666 Country Gent

    Aug 15, 2018
    Portland, Maine
    Now your talkin! Maybe that is what i’ll do.
     
  20. section2

    section2 Synchromatic

    944
    Dec 21, 2016
    Toronto
    If I understand correctly, that would take the capacitor out of the circuit, but the pot itself would still add some darkness to your tone just by virtue of being in the circuit. Whether that darkness is perceptible may be an open question, but in theory at least, using a no-load pot or removing the tone pot entirely would leave less resistance in the circuit and brighten up your tone. I always left the tone knob all the way up on my G3900, but I noticed a big difference when I removed the knob from the circuit.

    Here's a good article:

    http://www.wiredguitarist.com/2017/05/08/what-is-a-no-load-tone-pot/
     
    calebaaron666 likes this.
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