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Thread: Lone star strat upgrade 300k or 500k volume?

  1. #1
    Toneologist vinnie1971's Avatar
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    Default Lone star strat upgrade 300k or 500k volume?

    I have a 2013 Mexican Lone Star Deluxe Stratocaster.

    I love it but....

    To me Texas specials are on the shrill side and the fender twin head a little dark.

    I donít think it balances well, and I always preferred Fender Tex Mex, thicker hotter and more creamy, break up nicer. In my old tex mex strat I had 500k volume and 250k tones and the Texas specials are still a lot more shrill with 250k volume and tones.

    So Iím putting together a loaded pickguard with pearly gates bridge (500k tone, 0.022uF cap) tex mex middle and neck (250k tone 0.033uF cap)

    Iím doing auto split position 2 using superswitch.

    The sound I want is medium hot chilli carne.

    Should I use 500k volume or 300k?


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    Administrator Mincer's Avatar
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    Default Re: Lone star strat upgrade 300k or 500k volume?

    The Pearly Gates is a pretty bright pickup. But it sounds like that is what you are after. I'd use 500k.
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    Toneologist vinnie1971's Avatar
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    Default Re: Lone star strat upgrade 300k or 500k volume?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mincer View Post
    The Pearly Gates is a pretty bright pickup. But it sounds like that is what you are after. I'd use 500k.
    Cool. Thanks for that.


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  4. #4
    Toneologist vinnie1971's Avatar
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    Default Lone star strat upgrade 300k or 500k volume?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mincer View Post
    The Pearly Gates is a pretty bright pickup. But it sounds like that is what you are after. I'd use 500k.
    500k volume, 500k tone in the PG and 250k tone on the tex mex and everything sounds evenly balanced - bright but not too bright, no brittleness or ice pick - but Iím posting through a warm sounding amp Tweed amp. Much better than the Mexican Lone Star sound.


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    Last edited by vinnie1971; 03-12-2020 at 02:57 PM.

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    Default Re: Lone star strat upgrade 300k or 500k volume?

    300 k volume, and 250 k tone would be good, just take the tone pot off the bridge pickup, or use a "no load" tone pot. I've done that exact combo and it was fine, just pushes the pearly gates resonant peak down a little which sort of makes it sound like a more overwound pickup to me. I don't get the hate for the Fender Tex mex either, they are big and warm sounding in the neck and middle and are a good match for an hss setup, so you don't have the big drop off in volume when switching. If that's still darker than you would like on the bridge, try 500k , I think the Tex mex will be ok.

  6. #6
    Toneologist vinnie1971's Avatar
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    Default Lone star strat upgrade 300k or 500k volume?

    Quote Originally Posted by AZ Picker View Post
    300 k volume, and 250 k tone would be good, just take the tone pot off the bridge pickup, or use a "no load" tone pot. I've done that exact combo and it was fine, just pushes the pearly gates resonant peak down a little which sort of makes it sound like a more overwound pickup to me. I don't get the hate for the Fender Tex mex either, they are big and warm sounding in the neck and middle and are a good match for an hss setup, so you don't have the big drop off in volume when switching. If that's still darker than you would like on the bridge, try 500k , I think the Tex mex will be ok.
    I did actually try 300k and the result was interesting. It made the PG sound a bit thicker. Really nice. But the tex mex lost the sparkle and were rather dark sounding. I like tone control on the bridge so I put it back to 500k and while the PG isnít quite so thick sounding it balances better overall. To me the tex mex and pearly gates are a much better match than Texas specials.

    Itís funny that even with 500k volume and 250k tone, the tex mex are still thick warm and bell like with a little sparkle. The Texas Specials with 250k all round are still way more spiky and shrill.

    I donít care that the tex mex use plastic bobbins. Iím pretty sure fibre bobbins add nothing other than expense!

    I may yet go back to 300k though ....


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    Last edited by vinnie1971; 03-13-2020 at 01:22 AM.

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    Toneologist vinnie1971's Avatar
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    Default Re: Lone star strat upgrade 300k or 500k volume?

    Went back to 300k. Itís seems to work better. The pearly gates is nice smooth sounding and still has lots of bite - the tex mex also behave this way. They seem to break up more smoothly too.


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    mild old man perv Aceman's Avatar
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    Default Re: Lone star strat upgrade 300k or 500k volume?

    I question if 300k vs 250k makes enough difference to matter. Then again, the 300k could be +/- a bit.

    I like Vinnie first post. 500k for PG, 250 for Tex Mex.

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    Administrator Mincer's Avatar
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    Default Re: Lone star strat upgrade 300k or 500k volume?

    I don't think I can tell the difference between 250k and 300k.
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    OH THE DOUBLE THICK GLAZE! Clint 55's Avatar
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    Default Re: Lone star strat upgrade 300k or 500k volume?

    ^ I measured the resistance of my last batches of 250 and 300k and they were on average like 20k apart. I think if you got like a 225 and 325 it would be pretty easy to tell.
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    Administrator Mincer's Avatar
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    Default Re: Lone star strat upgrade 300k or 500k volume?

    Quote Originally Posted by Clint 55 View Post
    ^ I measured the resistance of my last batches of 250 and 300k and they were on average like 20k apart. I think if you got like a 225 and 325 it would be pretty easy to tell.
    Well, yeah providing that they are within spec. What I am saying is that if the pots actually are 50k apart, I wouldn't notice. And I use my volume and tone all the time.
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    Toneologist vinnie1971's Avatar
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    Default Lone star strat upgrade 300k or 500k volume?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mincer View Post
    I don't think I can tell the difference between 250k and 300k.
    Well I measured mine and my 300k measured 264k which is outside tolerance, the 500k I tried as volume measures 485k so thatís within tolerance. The 500k I used on the tone for the PG is 517k, so inside tolerance. I went with 300k volume because Gibson uses them for humbuckers - so I figure gender scale length with maple neck / fingerboard and strat tremolo Bridge itís going to be plenty bright. The 250k Iím using for the Tex Mex tone measures 216k which is way out of tolerance. These are all CTS pots !

    But damn it sounds great!
    And 300k volume with pearly gates still sounds much brighter than Gibson 57s in my LP eith 500k pots all round .


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    Last edited by vinnie1971; 03-15-2020 at 01:00 PM.

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    mild old man perv Aceman's Avatar
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    Default Re: Lone star strat upgrade 300k or 500k volume?

    Quote Originally Posted by vinnie1971 View Post
    I went with 300k volume because Gibson uses them for humbuckers
    Just because Gibson does it, does not mean it's a good idea....

    Would you like examples? Of which, 300k pots is just one.
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    Mojo's Minions hamerfan's Avatar
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    Default Re: Lone star strat upgrade 300k or 500k volume?

    You should let decide your ears! I had always the best results with 300 to 500k vol pots with Bridge Humbucker (btw i use 1 meg with the neck humbuckers in my Les Pauls) and 250k vol pot with singles.
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    Toneologist vinnie1971's Avatar
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    Default Re: Lone star strat upgrade 300k or 500k volume?

    Quote Originally Posted by Aceman View Post
    Just because Gibson does it, does not mean it's a good idea....

    Would you like examples? Of which, 300k pots is just one.
    I just used it as a starting point to compare with 500k and I prefer 300k volume and 500k tone on the pearly gates. I didnít feel a need to go down from 300k though.


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    Toneologist vinnie1971's Avatar
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    Default Re: Lone star strat upgrade 300k or 500k volume?

    Quote Originally Posted by hamerfan View Post
    You should let decide your ears! I had always the best results with 300 to 500k vol pots with Bridge Humbucker (btw i use 1 meg with the neck humbuckers in my Les Pauls) and 250k vol pot with singles.
    In this guitar it seems to work best too for my ears. I use my volume and tone controls so Iím trading off what itís like rolled off yo when I put it all on 10 for a solo in the band mix. I want all on 10 to be perfect - no icepick or ďpingĒ , I play finger style or hybrid picking mostly and get some snap out of the strings so I donít want it too bright for that!


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    Toneologist vinnie1971's Avatar
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    Default Lone star strat upgrade 300k or 500k volume?

    Ha ha. All this time on my hands and Iíve reverted back to 500k. Wasnít quite enough oomph when I wanted it!


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  18. #18
    Toneologist vinnie1971's Avatar
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    Default Re: Lone star strat upgrade 300k or 500k volume?

    Quote Originally Posted by vinnie1971 View Post
    Ha ha. All this time on my hands and Iíve reverted back to 500k. Wasnít quite enough oomph when I wanted it!


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    And reverted to 300k it just sounds better


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    OH THE DOUBLE THICK GLAZE! Clint 55's Avatar
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    Default Re: Lone star strat upgrade 300k or 500k volume?

    500k with true single coils is kinda cray.
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  20. #20
    Mojo's Minions dr.barlo's Avatar
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    Default Re: Lone star strat upgrade 300k or 500k volume?

    I use 500K's whenever there is a HB in the setup. That said, I am using the tone pot quite a bit.

    B

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