UP­grade Your elec­Tron­ics

Guitarist - - Feature -

fit­ted with var­i­ous pots – short for po­ten­tiome­ters – switches and sock­ets,” con­tin­ues Si­mon Law. “Some of these can be okay, but many af­ford­able electrics are fit­ted with rel­a­tively mod­estqual­ity vol­ume pots, sock­ets and switches. A bet­ter-qual­ity pot can give a bet­ter ‘sweep’ from one end of its range to the other and a bet­ter tone. Most sin­gle-coil pick­ups gui­tars are fit­ted with 250k pots; this value is cho­sen for its tonal re­sponse to the pick­ups them­selves. If these mea­sure less than 250k, then the gui­tar can be­come dark and dull sound­ing. If they mea­sure more, then they can be bright and shrill. So ide­ally their ac­tual value needs to be as close to the 250k as pos­si­ble.

“The same goes for the 500k pots fit­ted to hum­bucker-equipped gui­tars. Mak­ers like CTS, Al­pha and Emer­son make some amaz­ing re­place­ments for not a huge amount of money, and they re­ally are worth every penny. For me, the best sock­ets are made by Switchcraft. Switchcraft also makes the best Gib­son-styled switches – while, for Fen­der type gui­tars, I’d rec­om­mend get­ting a US-made CRL switch. All these can be fit­ted rel­a­tively eas­ily by any­one with a sol­der­ing iron and a lit­tle pa­tience – just take some pic­tures and copy the wiring like for like.”

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