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  • Question regarding pot connections!

    Hello to all, thanks for the responses in advance! there's several diagrams where you can see the pickup hot connected to the center terminal of a pot, and in other cases it's connected in the left terminal, the same with tone pots, where the cap is connected to the center terminal, and in other cases in the rigth terminal. What is the main reasons for those variations? i'll appreciate technical info as well.. This confuses me as i'm starting a guitar repair shop, and i do a lot of wirings, so i want to reach a point where i don't need diagrams to work, but logic sense of basic guitar electronics

    Thankyou very much,

    Dany

  • #2
    When the pickup output is connected to the wiper of the pot (center lug) the pickup will "see" a different load resistance depending upon where the pot is set, while the output to the amp will remain at the value of the pot.

    Because the input of the amp is not being grounded by the volume control, the wiring from the volume control to the amps input will be live and can pick up noise, hum, radio signals, etc.

    When the pickup output is connected to the top of the volume control, the pickup sees a constant resistance while the output to the amp lowers as the control is turned down. This will make the amp quieter when the volume control is turned down.

    The problem comes when there are more than one pickup in the guitar. If the pickup outputs are wired to the tops of their volume controls, when either volume control is turned all the way down, both pickups will be turned off. This is typical of Gibson style wiring.

    If the pickup outputs are connected to the pot wipers, each volume control can be turned off without killing the output of the other pickup.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by 52 Bill View Post
      When the pickup output is connected to the wiper of the pot (center lug) the pickup will "see" a different load resistance depending upon where the pot is set, while the output to the amp will remain at the value of the pot.

      Because the input of the amp is not being grounded by the volume control, the wiring from the volume control to the amps input will be live and can pick up noise, hum, radio signals, etc.

      When the pickup output is connected to the top of the volume control, the pickup sees a constant resistance while the output to the amp lowers as the control is turned down. This will make the amp quieter when the volume control is turned down.

      The problem comes when there are more than one pickup in the guitar. If the pickup outputs are wired to the tops of their volume controls, when either volume control is turned all the way down, both pickups will be turned off. This is typical of Gibson style wiring.

      If the pickup outputs are connected to the pot wipers, each volume control can be turned off without killing the output of the other pickup.
      I agree with most of that except the ground that you mentioned.
      The volume pot is usually grounded on the right side.
      The input is usually in the middle at the wiper, and when you turn to zero, it does ground the input to the amp.
      wired the other way with the pickup at the wiper, when you turn down the volume, you ground the pickup.
      With the output on the left you can chain more than one volume together, and have individual volume control without killing the other volumes, as mention earlier.
      The tone is less complicated, because your only using the wiper and one side of the pot.
      The Pot is not grounded like the volume, so you can put the output either in the middle or on the side.
      Only the cap is grounded.
      It's all really pretty simple.
      If your guitar is noisey when the volume is turned down, it is usually because the ground was left off the right side of the Vol. Pot.
      Good luck,
      T
      big_teee
      ToneOholic!
      Last edited by big_teee; 06-21-2013, 08:08 PM.
      "If Hitler invaded Hell, I would make at least a favourable reference of the Devil in the House of Commons." Winston Churchill
      Terry

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