250 K or 500 K Pots

Fish Out of Water

Senior member
Messages
216
I replaced the single coil bridge pickup in my strat with a single coil sized humbucker, but I left the old 250k volume pot in there.  The guitar still sounds a bit thin to my ears.  Would changing the pot to a 500k help to fatten up the sound?  If I put a 500k in there, what would that do the sound of the other single coils?  :icon_scratch:
 

ironiguana

Active member
Messages
42
Fish said:
I replaced the single coil bridge pickup in my strat with a single coil sized humbucker, but I left the old 250k volume pot in there.  The guitar still sounds a bit thin to my ears.  Would changing the pot to a 500k help to fatten up the sound?  If I put a 500k in there, what would that do the sound of the other single coils?  :icon_scratch:

250's should fatten the sound, 500's will add high end to your tone.  I have 250's in a hotrails/coolrails/coolrails setup and they sound pretty fat.
 

MikeW

Senior member
Messages
952
"Thinness" or "thickness" of your sound has more to do with your pickups than with your pots. The pots will contribute to the overall tonal quality of the guitar, but the tone originates with the pickups. With pickups, the number of wraps of wire around the magnets really is the contributing factor to "thickness" vs. "thinness". Fewer wraps = clear, bell-like tone & lower output. More wraps = more middle, more "muddy" tone & higher output.

You can think of this like plumbing and water. 250K would be a narrow pipe and 500K would be a bigger pipe. It wouldn't matter if you put in a bigger pipe if you only have a trickle of water coming through to start with. So pickups with fewer wraps would give you a trickle or a stream, and pickups with more wraps would give you more of a river.

In my experience, it's more common to replace pickups than to change pots. The LIndy Fralin and Seymour Duncan sites are really good starting pionts for reading up on the differences in tone and output for pickups.


 
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