Oldie but Goodie Product Review March 28 2016
Here's one of the first reviews on Elek-Trix by Rob DiStefano of Cavalier Pickups
What is a pickup's "resonant frequency peak point"? November 20 2015
Our dynamic wiring kits have always had the ability to bring out the best tones from your existing pickups by providing you with the tools to adjust it's baseline resonant frequency peak point. But what is a "resonant frequency peak point"?
Here's a video by Dylan Pickups that does a good job in explaning what it is.
How do I connect a P90 pickup to my Elek-trix Kit? October 08 2015P90's Special Instructions,
The pickup cable has two wires, the inside wire is the hot signal wire (color white) and the outside braid is the return wire. You will need to wrap and solder a 26AWG wire around the braid to make a connection. The other end will now fit in the green block in the N-, M- or B- locations as specified in the product manual.
What issues does a Single-Coil / Humbucker setup present? August 12 2015
Mixing humbuckers and single-coils always presents a dilemma. Do you use a 250k or a 500k pot for the volume control? As we discussed in the previous entry, the value of the volume pot has a significant effect on your tone, and most single-coils are voiced for 250K pots, while most humbuckers are voiced for 500K so which one do you choose? This dilemma is also a reason why some musicians dislike coil splitting a humbucker as they feel it is too bright or shrilly which maybe contributed to having the incorrect pot value. What is needed to solve this issue is a volume pot that is able to switch between these two values. So we came up with a "Volume Auto-switching" feature that changes the resistance load when you need it. Now when you are in the full-humbucker setting (all the way forward) you have a 500K load while in the other switch positions the load is lowered to 250k. This way a humbucker sounds like a humbucker should, and the single-coil and combination positions sound like they should. This feature is available on most but not all Elek-Trix models.
We get asked this all the time from prospective customers. What makes us unique is our passive "Dynamic Wiring" system. When we introduced this system using a non traditional circuit board at Namm 6 years ago, it was an industry first. Fast forward to 2015 and now you have Seymour Duncan, Fender, Gibson and others who feel comfortable using this concept with good reasons.
Take our selectable tone capacitor feature. With a traditional point to point wiring harness to find the best tone capacitor value for your pickups would require you to buy multiple capacitors and resort to the old method of trial and error. That means to try out our seven different capacitor values you would have to change out the capacitor seven times. With our system you can change values in seconds and determine which one sounds the best for your particular setup.
The key to our system is our flexible printed circuit board designs, plain and simple. We can do more because unlike PTP wiring harnesses, we can reroute and reconfigure signal paths along with component values. That is what gives us a creative edge, we can do more. Just how much more is dependent on how complex we want to make the design. Just because you can do something doesn't mean you should, so we take the approach of making our designs clean and simple. This makes them user friendly and easy to use.
When we design a product we spend time on even the smallest detail. An example of this is our Telecaster 3-way products. We modeled it to determine the best location for the connector to allow you to pivot the blade switch. Now you can mount the switch in a standard or reverse control orientation. This saves money and time for our customers and makes it easy for them to switch between these two orientations. This very same product can also be reconfigured to a 4-way but just unplugging the 3-way switch, flipping a dipswitch on and plugging in a 4-way switch module. Upgrading is easy and you can do it yourself without soldering.
By looking at existing guitar electronics in this new manner, we have a different vision of what is possible and how our customers can play the biggest part in determining their signature tone. We understand that our mission is to extract the highest quality signal from your pickups and to keep it that way until it reaches the output jack.
We will never be the less expensive wiring sytem in the market, but with our built in features you will get the best return on your investment, dollar for dollar with our products. That's our commitment to you!
|Retrofit All Previous Years Fender Stratocaster Guitars||Yes||No||No||Yes||No|
|Selectable Treble Bleed Circuit (On or Off)||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Multiple Tone Capacitor Value Selections||Yes-7||Yes-2||Yes-2||No||No|
|Selectable Volume Pot Value (250K or 500K)||No||No||No||Yes||No|
|Selectable Tone Pot Value (250K or 500K)||No||No||No||Yes||No|
|Volume /Neck Tone /Middle Tone - Control Setup||Yes||No||No||No||No|
|Volume /Neck&Middle Tone /Bridge Tone - Control Setup||Yes||No||No||No||No|
|Volume /Neck Tone /Middle&Bridge Tone - Control Setup||Yes||Yes||No||No||No|
|Volume /Neck Tone /Bridge Tone - Control Setup||Yes||No||No||No||No|
|Volume /Master Tone /Blender - Control Setup||Yes||No||Yes||No||No|
|Volume /Treble Control /Bass Control Setup||No||No||No||Yes||Yes|
|Multiple Treble Control Capacitor Value Selections||No||No||No||Yes-7||No|
|Multiple Bass Control Capacitor Value Selections||No||No||No||Yes-3||No|
|100% Solderless Pickup Connections||Yes ||Yes ||Yes ||Yes ||Yes |
 Compatible only with 2014 American Deluxe Stratocaster Plus Guitar
 Compatible with all brands of single coil and humbucker pickups with no modifications or add on terminals needed to the wires.
What value pot should I use for my volume control? March 11 2015
Volume pots are connected as a variable voltage divider for the signal from the pickups. The total resistance of the volume pot is connected directly across the pickups, and acts as a "load" on them. Because of the nature of the pickups complex internal impedance, this alters the peak frequency of the pickup. The resistance of the volume pot is crucial to pickup performance. Higher value pots cause the pickups to resonate at a higher frequency, which results in slightly higher output and presence with the result that the sound is noticeably brighter. Lower value pots do the reverse and make the sound darker, with less prescence and lower output. That is why you usually want 250K with lower output single coils and 500K or 1 Meg with higher output humbuckers. But with hotter single coils you may find that a 500K pot would work best. This is why we give you the option to select between 500K and 250K on your volume control.
Can you tell me which color wire on my 4 wire humbucker goes into which location on the green block? February 04 2015
Since there is no industry wiring color standard for pickups, it would be a nightmare to have all of our product's manual list every vendor's unique color scheme. To add to this confusion the very same pickup vendor may have a different color scheme for single coils pickups. For example Seymour Duncan uses a white wire for the hot signal on a single coil pickup but uses a black wire for the hot signal on a humbucker. Here's a conversion chart to hopefully help you make sense out of this.
Modern vs 50's Vintage Wiring June 06 2012
This popular and much discussed wiring mod relates to whether the tone controls are wired before or after the volume controls. Here's the general description and purpose for each type;
Vintage wiring has the volume and tone control wired directly out to the jack. The advantage of this setup is lowering the volume does not create treble loss since the high frequencies sidestep the volume pot ground. The disadvantage is you can only have one master tone control and the output signal is influenced by both the volume and tone controls which require you to make adjustments to both pots to get your desired results.
Modern wiring has the tone control signal connected to the input of the volume control, which passes through the pot, then out to the jack. The advantage of this setup is that the multiple tone controls and the volume control are independent of each other. This method makes it easier to control your output signal and get the volume / tone results you want. The disadvantage is since the tone signal passes through the volume pot, it may cause some treble loss as you lower the volume. This problem can be easily solved by incorporating a "Treble Bleed" circuit on the volume control.
For those of you who are looking for empirical data on this subject, here's some that was provided by JohnH on GuitarNutz2's website;
" At full volume, both are identical in response. The differences between modern and 50’s wiring start to occur when volume is reduced. The following have the volume pot set at 50%, which is about 7 on a log pot, resulting is a general 6db volume reduction:
Modern wiring, with 50% volume, tone pot 0-10:
50’s wiring, with 50% volume, tone pot 0-10:
Now you can see the difference. At full tone, and 50% volume, the 50’s wiring is in fact slightly brighter, which is due to it loading the pickups less. However, this does not compensate for the loss of the initial resonant peak. This extra brightness at reduced volume with full tone is the main reason some advocate 50’s wiring.
But as the tone is reduced, while the modern wiring acts fairly consistently on the treble, the 50’s wiring starts to cut deeply across all the frequencies except the very lowest, acting more like a volume control. The reason is that with modern wiring, the tone control acts consistently on the pickups, while with 50’s wiring, it is acting through the resistance of the volume control, resulting in it seeing a variable impedance, cutting much more deeply when the volume pot is reduced."
The consistency factor is probably why modern wiring is the one Fender uses on their guitars.
So which one should you choose? This question is why we provide you with both types on all of our Elek-Trix models. You get to try out both and hear for yourself which one sounds best to you.
How does a Treble Bleed circuit work? April 18 2012
Electricity only does one thing, it searches for ground. OK, let's hold this thought for a minute.
First you need to know how the volume pot is wired. It has three pins on it, the middle pin (wiper) goes to the output jack, one end (counter clockwise) goes to ground and the other end (clockwise) receives the pickup's signal. When you turn the pot, the wiper gets closer to one of the end pins. When it's turned fully CCW, the signal is shorting to the volume pot ground and you get no sound. But when it's turned fully clockwise, the signal bypasses the volume pot ground and goes to the jack to find it's ground. Now with modern wiring your tone control signal passes through the volume pot which is tied to ground on one end so remember electricity searches for ground.
By turning your volume control down, you're allowing some of the signal to "bleed" into it's ground pin. When you do this, the frequencies that leave first are the higher ones (treble), which makes the tone seem muddy and thick or without the "edge" on it.
A way to avoid this is by using a "treble bleed" circuit. It's called this because it prevents the treble (high) frequencies from bleeding off to ground. It accomplishes this by allowing these higher frequencies to sidestep the volume control rather than go through it and get it's ground from the jack. This is pretty much what the Vintage 50's wiring does (to be discussed later). This circuit can be just a capacitor or a resistor & capacitor combo in series or parallel. It all depends on what frequencies you want to pass. Ultimately it is going to come down to what sounds best to you, which is why we give you the option to turn this circuit on or off.