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Capacitor Shootout

Discussion in 'Accessories / Connections' started by Guitarfreak, Jul 18, 2009.

  1. Guitarfreak

    Guitarfreak Well-Known Member

    I recently did some comparisons of some popular capacitors for the electric guitar and I thought I would share the results with you. I tested poly film caps which are the little green rectangles that have been the standard on fender strats for over twenty years. I also tested ceramic discs which are a bit more modern or so I'm told. I got a bunch of orange drops and even threw in a monolithic cap too, just for fun :D

    Gear Used:
    Guitar: Jackson RR3
    Pickup: DiMarzio PAF PRO in the neck position
    Amp: Tube Works 100w Head through Crate 4x10 cab
    Mic: SM57 positioned at speaker edge pointed at center of speaker cone. Some may call this my signature position :D

    Things to know before listening:
    The differences aren't going to be as obvious as a microphone shootout. Don't expect it to sound like a different guitar playing each part, because it isn't going to. Each capacitor has it's own 'flare' if you will, accenting certain frequencies along the spectrum. You may notice that some make the sound relatively flat while others give the sound some depth. You may also notice that some sound warm while others are a bit harsh. That said, the differences are subtle but through a nice system and with a good pair of ears you should be able to detect the inherent differences.

    Now without further ado, the files. They are in WAV format but I compressed them for upload, so I'm not sure if that harmed the file's quality at all but the compressed package takes up about half the space as the uncompressed files.

    short video

    The cap names were too long for the file so here is what each letter is.

    A - Polypropylene 400v Orange Drop .022
    B - Polypropylene 400v Orange Drop .047
    C - Polyester 400v Orange Drop .022
    D - Polyester 400v Orange Drop .047
    E - Monolithic .1
    F - Ceramic Disc 50v .022
    G - Ceramic Disc 50v .047
    H - Poly Film 100v .022
    I - Poly Film 100v .047
    J - Polyester 100v Orange Drop .022
    K - Polyester 100v Orange Drop .047

    I may do the same test on distorted guitar in the near future if this gets good reviews :cool:
  2. TheJackAttack

    TheJackAttack Distinguished Member

    Compressed the .wav files? Or do you mean you put them in a folder and zipped up the folder?
  3. Guitarfreak

    Guitarfreak Well-Known Member

    Oh sorry, I should have clarified. There was no audio or digital compression whatsoever, the only thing I did was zip the folder. The thing that throws me off is a. OSX calls zipping 'compressing' and b. after zipping the filesize was cut in half. Sorry for any confusion.
  4. TheJackAttack

    TheJackAttack Distinguished Member

    Well, zipping is compressing the folder. Since this is an audio forum where compressing has many meanings I just thought I'd clarify. Clearly there should have been more clarity in my query.

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