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Thread: SE pots and caps worth upgrading to USA?

  1. #1
    Senior Member andy474x's Avatar
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    SE pots and caps worth upgrading to USA?

    Anyone done it? Is the tonal difference very noticeable?

    Also, does it require changing the knobs and/or diameter of the holes for the shafts?
    -I'm no expert, but it seems to work and I haven't electrocuted myself yet. Which is pretty much the standard I live by.

    SE Custom 24 25th Anniversary - SE Akesson+57/08's - SE 30 Head/Cab

  2. #2
    Senior Member wardog's Avatar
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    Up to you. I have found my se electronics to be very good. I don't plan to replace until they fail. When I have replaced pots, the stock knobs fit fine --metric/imperial.
    I like surprises!!!

  3. #3
    Senior Member Chris528's Avatar
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    I had my Zach Myers upgraded and you will have to drill the holes for the larger pots.
    "BADASS MODDED" SE SEMI-HOLLOW W/BIGSBY
    SE ZACH MYERS, SE TREMONTI, SE20 COMBO

  4. #4
    Cream Crackered Mikegarveyblues's Avatar
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    Having done it with my Bernie I'd have to say it's worth keeping the electrics stock until they fail.

    I installed Bare Knuckle CTS pots in my Bernie and had to ream the holes (Easy enough as long as you're slow and steady) so they fit. Also needed new knobs. Personally, I felt the Alpha (Think they where alpha?) had a much nicer feel under the fingers... Much smoother. My first set of CTS pots felt like junk but the BKP CTS are good. The only positive to the BKP CTS pots is that they are guaranteed 500k (550k) whereas the alphas, well a couple where a bit out. Would my ears hear the difference? Not sure. Unless you feel like the taper is a bit off with the pots - be it the taper or the feel - or you want a drastically different pot value for some reason then I'd stick with them.

    I changed my cap to a cheap Orange Drop. Not because I expected to hear any difference tonally (You wont!) but because it seemed like I may as well if I've got a hot soldering iron around all those bits and I may damage the original cap.

    Perhaps order some spare US parts such as pots, caps and switch just in case they do fail at any point.
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  5. #5
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    in my boys singlecut se I installed the USA drop in electronics which also had the push/pull tone and a HFS /vintage pick up set. Everything was drop it EXCEPT I had to install a switch craft long barrel toggle as the USA ones are short. the SE body is a lot thicker for where the toggle goes through than say the McCarty which basically is the electronics I dropped in. I also have the black lamp shade knobs. the guitar is really sweet now and has nice tonal variations and can really rock!

    If PRS made a USA model of these with out the trem I would be all over it. Personally I don`t need the 4 knobs and these are placed perfect for pinky control
    Last edited by leeasam; 02-22-2014 at 08:24 PM.
    2010 Taylor 816CE
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  6. #6
    Senior Member garrett's Avatar
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    I think it's worth it, just because I don't like the taper of the cheap-o stock pots. As already said, knobs will fit, but you have to widen the holes a little. It's no big deal.
    --Garrett--

  7. #7
    Occasionally Onery Member CantankerousCarl's Avatar
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    Anyone know what the specs are on the stock SE pots? I opened up my recently arrived used SE Akesson and found 4 x 500K Alphas. Is that stock?
    1990, 91, 92 & 97 CE24s | 1991 CU24 | 2003 & 04 SE EG SSS | 2008 SE Semi-Hollow Soapbar
    2011 CU24 GC Throwback | 2012 Signature Limited | 2013 408 Brazilian | 2013 Paul's Guitar
    2013 Hollowbody II | 2013 CU24 Swamp Ash Limited | 2013 XPRS 408 Semi-Hollow
    2013 S2 Mira | 2013 CU24 | 2014 CU24 Semi-Hollow

  8. #8
    Senior Member andy474x's Avatar
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    Just so happens I'm going to be poking around at the wiring in my akesson today... let me take a look...
    -I'm no expert, but it seems to work and I haven't electrocuted myself yet. Which is pretty much the standard I live by.

    SE Custom 24 25th Anniversary - SE Akesson+57/08's - SE 30 Head/Cab

  9. #9
    Senior Member andy474x's Avatar
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    Aaaand I'm back... yes, they are alpha pots in my Akesson also. I believe all my other SE's have been as well.
    -I'm no expert, but it seems to work and I haven't electrocuted myself yet. Which is pretty much the standard I live by.

    SE Custom 24 25th Anniversary - SE Akesson+57/08's - SE 30 Head/Cab

  10. #10
    Occasionally Onery Member CantankerousCarl's Avatar
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    Thanks, Andy. I am looking for some magic sauce on this one. It is the best-sounding SE I ever heard or owned, hands down. It even vibrates on my lap - quite a bit, too - which is something that most of my other SEs barely did. I think the stars aligned on this one's birth. And with the 406C's she's been uber stable, even with the crazy weather - much closer to my Marylanders.
    1990, 91, 92 & 97 CE24s | 1991 CU24 | 2003 & 04 SE EG SSS | 2008 SE Semi-Hollow Soapbar
    2011 CU24 GC Throwback | 2012 Signature Limited | 2013 408 Brazilian | 2013 Paul's Guitar
    2013 Hollowbody II | 2013 CU24 Swamp Ash Limited | 2013 XPRS 408 Semi-Hollow
    2013 S2 Mira | 2013 CU24 | 2014 CU24 Semi-Hollow

  11. #11
    Senior Member andy474x's Avatar
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    Yeah, I feel the same way about mine! Almost makes me want to get rid of my Custom, but then I pick that up and it's a nice axe too. I don't know what it is about these Akessons, but they just have the resonance and depth of tone that I didn't hear in the stock SE245's. Plus the jumbo frets and ebony board just feel sexy as can be.

    Does yours have treble bleed caps on the volume pots? I have been wondering what's up with my volume controls losing treble when I turn them down, look inside and hmm... there are no bleed caps! Might also change the other tone cap for the bass pickup, just to see what happens. Looks like I'll be doing some soldering tonight!
    -I'm no expert, but it seems to work and I haven't electrocuted myself yet. Which is pretty much the standard I live by.

    SE Custom 24 25th Anniversary - SE Akesson+57/08's - SE 30 Head/Cab

  12. #12
    Junior Member Sky65's Avatar
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    Some interesting reading on Guitar knobs.

    http://blog.philadelphialuthiertools...uitar-or-bass/

  13. #13
    Occasionally Onery Member CantankerousCarl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by andy474x View Post
    Does yours have treble bleed caps on the volume pots?
    They indeed appear capless...
    1990, 91, 92 & 97 CE24s | 1991 CU24 | 2003 & 04 SE EG SSS | 2008 SE Semi-Hollow Soapbar
    2011 CU24 GC Throwback | 2012 Signature Limited | 2013 408 Brazilian | 2013 Paul's Guitar
    2013 Hollowbody II | 2013 CU24 Swamp Ash Limited | 2013 XPRS 408 Semi-Hollow
    2013 S2 Mira | 2013 CU24 | 2014 CU24 Semi-Hollow

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