Wiring Color code for SE Model G&B Pickups?

Discussion in 'PTC - PRS Tech Center' started by RedJamaX, Mar 18, 2017.

  1. RedJamaX

    RedJamaX New Member

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    I've got a 25th Anniversary Scarlet Red SE Custom 24...

    I'm changing out the pickups, and I want to reuse the Stock SE Pickups in another guitar but I don't know what the wiring color codes are.

    Simply matching the previous configuration with the new Pickup wires is not really an option because I am not using the same wiring configuration... And, I've already removed them before I took a picture (i know, lesson learned).

    Does anybody have the wiring color code assignments for these pickups?

    5 wire pickups...
    Black
    White
    Red
    Green
    Bare Wire Shield

    Thanks in Advance.
     
  2. charliefrench

    charliefrench New Member

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  3. RedJamaX

    RedJamaX New Member

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    Excellent!

    Thanks. I'll post some pics and the schematics for both guitars when I finish.
     
  4. charliefrench

    charliefrench New Member

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  5. RedJamaX

    RedJamaX New Member

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    Funny... I was just about to look that up in order to verify it... But I saw the email about your update first... Thanks again!
     
  6. RedJamaX

    RedJamaX New Member

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    Just wanted to provide an update... Here is my new wiring plan for the SE.

    Neck = GFS Retro-tron Hot Liverpool
    Bridge = Seymour Duncan JB
    Each pickup goes out to a 3-way switch (Standard, Single, Parallel)
    Then routed to a Phase Reverse on the Push/Pull... Neck to Volume... Bridge to Tone
    Volume has a Treble-bleed (.001)
    Tone has a 2-way cap switch (.022 & .047)

    [​IMG]
     
  7. charliefrench

    charliefrench New Member

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    I have given your schematic a good close inspection and it looks like it all routes as it should but please understand when I say that I am not an expert I mean it :)

    Would appreciate a picture of the guitar when you have installed the extra switches and completed your modifications.

    Good luck!
     
  8. RedJamaX

    RedJamaX New Member

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    OK... finally had some time to dedicate to this project and got it done this weekend. I don't do a whole lot of wiring, so I'm very slow at soldering, and it's not all that pretty either. Also, this was the most complicated re-wire I've done yet, so I took my time and triple checked every every connection as I went along.

    Components:
    Neck - GFS (Guitar Fetish) Hot Liverpool Retrotron (Filtertron style)
    Bridge - Seymour Duncan JB
    2x Bourns A500k DPDT push/pull pots
    Orange Drop Caps
    - .001uf Treble Bleed
    - .022uf and .047uf Tone Caps (on a two-way switch)
    Switches - Pickup (3-way), mini-toggle dpdt (1x 2-way, 2x 3-way)

    Wiring: (per the diagram posted above)
    Pickup Selector: Standard 3-way pickup selection
    3-Way switches (x2): Each pickup is wired to it's own 3-way switch with the following outputs
    - Standard (series) humbucker
    - Single Coil
    - Parallel humbucker
    Push/Pull Phase Reversal: Each pickup is then routed from the 3-way to it's own phase-reversal
    2-Way Tone: The Tone control is switchable between the .022uf and .047uf Caps

    The Extra Mile:
    I really wanted to take every measure I could to make this guitar sound as good as possible, so I took a few extra steps that I've only ever heard recommended, but never seen it done...
    1. Copper Shielding Tape for the entire wiring cavity
    2. Central Grounding Plate (used an old trem spring claw)
    3. Larger gauge wire for ground connections (18)
    4. Individual ground connections for each major component
    5. Shielded (and grounded) wire for all HOT & TONE leads
    I'm not sure which of these factors mattered most for the end result, or if it was a combination of all of it... but this guitar now has less buzz/noise than any other guitar I've played which cost less than a couple thousand (and still quieter than some of those too)

    The Result:
    Extremely happy with the results.
    Tone: This pickup combo was a bit brighter in the previous guitar, AXL Badwater Pro (Super-Strat style Alder Body). But I really like the slightly darker tone in this guitar. It's not muddy by any means, but it gets these really smooth creamy mids for solos, which is exactly what I wanted this guitar to sound like. Couldn't have expected anything better.
    Options: Between the Parallel, Phase Reversal, and tone cap options, the range of tonal options is more than I will likely even use.

    What I would have done differently:
    - Only one phase switch. As it turns out, as I suspected, you really only need one. When you reverse the phase on both pickups, they are back "in phase". And "IF" there actually is any difference in tone between both pickups in phase one way vs another... I can't hear it. I wired it that way because I couldn't find anything definitive on that matter... nobody explicitly says this in any of the information I found on a phase switching.
    - Skip the Single-Coil Option - I've heard some pickups that had a noticeable (but small) difference between Single-Coil and Parallel wiring... these do not, not that I can hear anyway. And certainly not worth the extra tedious wiring and the extra cost of the 3-way on-on-on dpdt switches..
    - 250K or 300K Tone Pot. I've done some testing in some of my other re-wirings and found that a 250K or 300K rolls the tone off much more evenly than 500K. But I really wanted to implement the Phase Shift with all possibilities a lot more than I was concerned bout the tone roll-off. Besides, the 2-way cap switch makes it really easy to get the sweet spots for every tone I get all the configuration options.
    - Smaller caps: I ordered these off eBay from TheArtOfTone and did not really pay attention to the voltage ratings (400 and 600). I've heard people say there is a subtle difference in favor of the larger voltage ratings... but I could never hear anything in the videos and audio clips I listened on. In any case, they aren't coming out now.
    - .002 Treble Bleed: I debated getting that to let more mids through, but most of the information I read made it seem like the .001 was better... but now that I've heard it, I think a .002 would be better, at least for this guitar and these pickups.

    Enough of my rambling... time for some pics:
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
    bodia and charliefrench like this.
  9. bodia

    bodia Authorities said.....best leave it.....unsolved

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    Nicely done!
     
  10. charliefrench

    charliefrench New Member

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    Good work. Thank you for the wonderful follow up, and photos. This information will be very helpful to others who might wish to contemplate a similar project. Your guitar looks great.

    Did the SE pickups transplant into your other guitar go well?
     
  11. RedJamaX

    RedJamaX New Member

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    Thanks!!

    haven't even started the other one yet... I'm actually going to be re-finishing the body... something else I've never done before either. There is a picture below of what it looks like now... (or, what it used to look like before I completely dismantled it). I plan to sand off the distressed finish it has now, but I'll be leaving the small dark divots because it will play well into the look I will try to create. I'm going to stain it with a tobacco sunburst finish and seal it with a satin finish sealer. Ultimately, I like the rough finish on this guitar, but I want something more stylish and classic. Going for a dark yellow with a bit or brown and orange for the center... fade to a dark red... then to black around the edges. And if I fail completely... I'll just paint it something else...

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  12. charliefrench

    charliefrench New Member

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    Wonderful. It is clear that you are not of feint heart and I wish you well with this project. Your SE pickups will be put to good use with all of those switches I am sure :)
     
  13. garrett

    garrett Not a New Member

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    Great stuff! I also like experimenting.

    Does it sound any different depending on which pickup you put out of phase? That's something I've wondered about.

    Here's an idea for the second phase switch: Commonly called "half out of phase" which puts a 0.01 uf capacitor in series so it only phase cancels some frequencies. Provides a more quacky Strat like tone. A favorite tone on my Telecaster. The resistor is optional; personally I skip it.
    https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/7440801/Guitar Wiring/HOoPToggleSwitch.jpg

    For the coil splits, I like the PRS method of using resistors to fatten up the tone a bit. 1.1k on the neck and 2.2k on the bridge, in series to ground. It lets some of the shunted coil bleed through and gets a more natural single coil sound. You'll lose less output than parallel mode.

    Agree on caps. There's no reason at all to use higher voltages. A guitars' voltage is in millivolts. Even a 100 volt cap is overkill, really.

    I go the other direction with treble bleeds. I really like the 180pf cap used by PRS, and I'm using a 220pf on my HBII with great results. I've also had good success with 330pf cap and 80k resistor. I have found that .001 and above is too much. But there's no right answer there. The sweet spot depends on the pickups, guitar and the player's ears.
     
  14. RedJamaX

    RedJamaX New Member

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    After experimenting a bit more... As long as the pickups are in the same mode (series/single/parallel), then there is no noticeable difference. But most of the mixed configurations do have a slightly different sound depending on which phase reverse is triggered.


    Nice! Thanks... I'll save these for my next guitar (bottom pic) and see what happens. This wiring job was such a tedious endeavor, I don't really want to mess with it until I have a definitive plan for any adjustments.


    Agreed... I have also found that the .001 is not quite right with this setup... The smallest knob in the Strat style AXL is actually a variable treble bleed on a .001, and that one worked out perfect for that particular guitar. Also, the largest knob is a 12-position varitone... that setup offered a LOT of different sounds. The middle pickup (SD Duckbucker) isn't really all that great though... I'll probably end up selling that one to get something a little hotter... Though, I had considered adding a Phase switch to that guitar as well...maybe that will make a difference.
     

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