Busting the MYTH of matched pots!!!!!!!!!!!

It seems that the mark of good electronics in a guitar is based on matching of equipment, while this holds true for many situations, we're gonna bust the myth today of matching potentiometers. 

MATCHED POTS are a benchmark signifying quality craftsmanship and care taken when making hand built guitar electronics, but why you; ask are we at the Guitar Garage claiming its a MYTH?!? Clearly this needs some explaining. 


In most cases that's right, and matching pots isn't a BAD thing, it's just not necessary. Okay, here's why. As soon as we turn that volume knob or tone knob just a little bit that matched value is gone!!! Matching guitar pots only matters for a full volume situation.


Well then your guitar does not have all of it's potential opened up for you. With a properly set up wiring scheme for your playing style, you can play your guitar at all volume and tone settings for a balanced palate of tone colors to paint with. Volume and Tone knobs are not On/Off switches and can be used to color your sound very musically and function throughout they’re entire control sweep. If your guitar only sounds good at full volume, perhaps its because you are looking for something that you just cant produce with stock components. 


Ah, now we are getting to the right answers. At the Guitar Garage when we build a custom guitar, we match most importantly the CAPACITOR value!! We buy so many pots and caps that we can afford to make matched sets, and we do.... but the MOST IMPORTANT component to measure is your cap.
When wiring your own guitar you can do this test yourself. You'll need a multi-meter that measure capacitance and you’ll need to know how to find your cap value .We'll discuss that first. 

To find a capacitors value, read the numbers on the side. We use Sprague orange drop caps and they will have a number like this: 223J. 
The 22 is the value, and the 3 tells you how many decimal places to move to the left. This 223J is a .022uF capacitor. The J is a tolerance code that has to be looked up on a chart. This one is +/- 5%. 
Set your meter to capacitance mode put the test leads on the to leads of the cap and wait a second as the meter will charge the capacitor with a small voltage to measure it's true ability to hold electricity and CAPS VARY VERY WIDELY. Beings that a capacitors function within a guitar's tone circuit is to be a high pass filter, and it's value determines its cutoff frequency, matching CAPS is WAY MORE IMPORTANT than to bother matching the pots!!!!

Okay, so maybe matching the pots is not a total myth, but for the cost it would be for a DIY guitar owner to match his pots (the minimum you'd have to buy is 5 for a Les Paul) and the cost of buying a few extra caps to get a matched set, the time, effort, and MONEY spent and the fact that capacitors have a definite effect on tone, it makes much more sense to make sure your CAPS are matched!!!
We at the Guitar Garage deal with so many pots and caps that we match everything. DIY guys pay close attention to that cap... after all it IS IN our Tone circuit, and TONE is what we're all about!!!! Our guys are always here for tech support give our website a look where we offer free diagrams to all our flagship wiring harnesses!!!!