The Fender Forum
NEW! LPF Facebook Page
NEW! LPF Instagram Page
Merchandise & Donations
NEW! Burst Serial Log Home Page
LPF Homesite
Results 1 to 27 of 27
  1. #1

    gibson pcb's - any difference

    hello, just signed up to this forum after i bought my first gibson les paul, a 2009 standard in ebony finish.
    i was wondering, is there any difference in sound between les pauls with regular pots and wiring, and the one's that come with the pcb's like mine?
    btw here are some pics



  2. #2
    Les Paul Forum Member DanD's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Posts
    2,366

    Re: gibson pcb's - any difference

    I doubt anyone would hear a difference between hand wired and PCB control wiring.

    A lot of folks like the hand wired controls and 50s style wiring, but other than being easier ( if you know how to solder) to mod, I see no real difference.

    I've got an R9 and a '13 Standard both with the same wiring and the only difference I can hear are the pickups.
    Last edited by DanD; 11-23-15 at 10:54 PM.
    "In Heaven all the interesting people are missing."

  3. #3

    Re: gibson pcb's - any difference

    Take some advice from someone who has been down that route. Leave the PCB board and just play the guitar. I have switched a lot of pick ups, pots, and caps and have found the Gibson does a really good job with the PCB boards. In one of my Les Paul's, I pulled the pcb board and switched it out with all 500k pots and orange drop caps. It opened the pick ups up way too much and was a little harsh. I replaced the orange drop caps with PIO caps and it ended up sounding great but also just like it did with the PCB board. My point is Gibson does a good job and you will just be splitting hairs at that point imo. Plus the quick connect pins are great for swapping out pick ups on the fly and the PCB board just basically takes the place of the wiring, there are still 4 pots and 2 caps in that sucker. All replaceable if you are good at soldering.

  4. #4
    Les Paul Forum Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2015
    Location
    OHIO
    Posts
    3

    Re: gibson pcb's - any difference

    [QUOTE=gania13;2669382]hello, just signed up to this forum after i bought my first gibson les paul, a 2009 standard in ebony finish.
    i was wondering, is there any difference in sound between les pauls with regular pots and wiring, and the one's that come with the pcb's like mine?
    /QUOTE]


    Well for me and my 2012 LP Standard (purchased new), the PCB was not good at all. I fought it for two years trying different caps, modern and 50's, treble bleeds, amps, tubes, etc. trying to get satisfied with the Burstbucker Pro pups to sound good to me. Also bought classic 57's & 57 Plus Pups which didn't work any better. Nothing seemed to help very much. Until I got rid of the PCB, I wasn't satisfied. After removing it, everything improved. My experience.

    Daver

  5. #5
    Les Paul Forum Member Big Al's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    Lake Ontario shore
    Posts
    13,408

    Re: gibson pcb's - any difference

    No.

    However, if you think there is, you will hear one, regardless if it exists. Most people hear what they expect. Human nature.
    The older I get, the better I was.

  6. #6

    Re: gibson pcb's - any difference

    ok i get what your'e saying. i once had an ibanez and i played with the pickups until i finally understood that it was just a waste of money and there was no big difference at all.
    thats also why i'm selling my sg instead of tweaking it.

    daver what did you put instead the pcb? just regular gibson factory modern style wiring?

  7. #7
    Les Paul Forum Member DanD's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Posts
    2,366

    Re: gibson pcb's - any difference

    Quote Originally Posted by gania13 View Post
    ok i get what your'e saying. i once had an ibanez and i played with the pickups until i finally understood that it was just a waste of money and there was no big difference at all.
    thats also why i'm selling my sg instead of tweaking it.

    daver what did you put instead the pcb? just regular gibson factory modern style wiring?
    Have you tried adjusting the pup heights?

    The BBs in my Standard sound much different after I lowered them to my personal 'sweet spot'.

    BBs aren't my favorite Gibson pickup but are more than suitable. They have a cool mid range growl that screams classic 70s rock.

    Raise 'em up and you can go into hard rock territory pretty easily. Lower 'em down for Jazz and Blues.

    My Standard really can cover all the bases I want her to. I seriously doubt the PCB has anything to do with your problem. In fact the PCB is probably a better mousetrap. The only issue with the PCB that I can foresee would be down the road when a pot goes south and needs replaced.
    "In Heaven all the interesting people are missing."

  8. #8
    Les Paul Forum Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2015
    Location
    OHIO
    Posts
    3

    Re: gibson pcb's - any difference

    Quote Originally Posted by gania13 View Post
    ok i get what your'e saying. i once had an ibanez and i played with the pickups until i finally understood that it was just a waste of money and there was no big difference at all.
    thats also why i'm selling my sg instead of tweaking it.

    daver what did you put instead the pcb? just regular gibson factory modern style wiring?

    I put in all new parts. (so I could keep the original PCB and Switch and Jack with the quick connects)
    My 2012 PCB had four 500k push pull pots, modern. I measured the pots resistance and made a drawing so I knew exactly what I had because I wanted to keep the same setup, without a PCB. The BB Pro Bridge Pup also has reverse magnet.

    The 2012 LP Standard controls use the Bridge and Neck Vol Pots for Coil Shunt; Neck Tone Pot for Phase Reverse; Bridge Tone Pot for True Bypass (per Gibson).

    I bought four new 500k Push Pull Pots, Caps, Switchcraft Switch and Jack and Quick Connect wire adapters. I wired everything for the same control setup and so I still have quick connect Pups.

    It worked great.

    Daver
    Last edited by Daver; 11-24-15 at 09:45 AM.

  9. #9

    Re: gibson pcb's - any difference

    The conclusion from this thread is "dont touch anything"

  10. #10
    Les Paul Forum Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2015
    Location
    OHIO
    Posts
    3

    Re: gibson pcb's - any difference

    Quote Originally Posted by gania13 View Post
    The conclusion from this thread is "dont touch anything"

    That would be correct if you are happy with what you have.

    Since you asked "is there any difference in sound between les pauls with regular pots and wiring, and the one's that come with the pcb's"..... I was just saying that I wasn't satisfied for a long time until I removed my 2012 PCB.... and now I am very happy with the sounds I get and the big difference it made to me.... all for the better. I've been playing 50 years and I only know what I have.

    Good luck with yours and whatever you do.
    Daver

  11. #11

    Re: gibson pcb's - any difference

    thanks, i'm not complaining so i think it makes me happy with the tone.. although i only have it a couple of days.
    maybe in time i'll see things i dont like.

  12. #12
    Les Paul Forum Member John Vasco's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    Norwich, England, originally Liverpool
    Posts
    2,039

    Re: gibson pcb's - any difference

    Quote Originally Posted by gania13 View Post
    hello, just signed up to this forum after i bought my first gibson les paul, a 2009 standard in ebony finish.
    i was wondering, is there any difference in sound between les pauls with regular pots and wiring, and the one's that come with the pcb's like mine?
    btw here are some pics


    Every Les Paul has its own individual voice. There's no getting away from that. I have 5 Les Pauls, all of which bring different things to the musical table...



    http://www.soundclick.com/vasco

    Live clip of Splinter at The Cavern, November 2006: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GxOCksQUKbI

    "And you're so, you're so heavy,
    As you stand close before me, baby all I do is stare,
    And you know, you've got it all, you've got it there"

  13. #13
    Les Paul Forum Member Big Al's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    Lake Ontario shore
    Posts
    13,408

    Re: gibson pcb's - any difference

    Quote Originally Posted by gania13 View Post
    thanks, i'm not complaining so i think it makes me happy with the tone.. although i only have it a couple of days.
    maybe in time i'll see things i dont like.
    I'd wait until you hear something you don't like. I haven't a clue from a single one of your posts what you want? Define what you don't have and what you hope to achieve. It may be an easy fix, or not, depending on just what the heck you want.
    The older I get, the better I was.

  14. #14

    Re: gibson pcb's - any difference

    lol i dont want anything, just interested in getting information and to know if i'm missing something with the pcb...
    i suppose i'm not missing anything

  15. #15
    Les Paul Forum Member Big Al's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    Lake Ontario shore
    Posts
    13,408

    Re: gibson pcb's - any difference

    Brother, is this the only Les Paul you have? My experience is that sometimes we try to put all our eggs in one basket and it never works out. I've played a few of those Lesters and they are just fine. However some people get obsessed with an IDEAL, usually a 50's ideal and if that's the case you'll never be happy. Just knowing those pcb mounted parts are on there will eat away at you.

    Bottom line from an old fart who knows is, if you plan on changing pickups and parts a lot you may be better of gutting the electronics as it seems to hard for most to easily mess with them. I have done a lot of that kind of thing so no issue for me. There is a WORLD of other stuff you can use and you will find opinions all over the place as to which is mostest and bestest of the lot. Everyone has their favorites. But it's your guitar, and there is nothing anyone can say to you that is more important or has more weight than what YOU want.

    You don't need a committee to give you an answer. If your only worry is that it sounds wrong or bad or is inferior, relax, your OK and do not need to fret about it.
    Last edited by Big Al; 04-23-18 at 12:05 PM.
    The older I get, the better I was.

  16. #16

    Re: gibson pcb's - any difference

    thanks, for now i like it just the way it is, don't really see a need to change anything.

  17. #17

    Re: gibson pcb's - any difference

    Quote Originally Posted by tommersjay View Post
    Take some advice from someone who has been down that route. Leave the PCB board and just play the guitar. I have switched a lot of pick ups, pots, and caps and have found the Gibson does a really good job with the PCB boards. In one of my Les Paul's, I pulled the pcb board and switched it out with all 500k pots and orange drop caps. It opened the pick ups up way too much and was a little harsh. I replaced the orange drop caps with PIO caps and it ended up sounding great but also just like it did with the PCB board. My point is Gibson does a good job and you will just be splitting hairs at that point imo. Plus the quick connect pins are great for swapping out pick ups on the fly and the PCB board just basically takes the place of the wiring, there are still 4 pots and 2 caps in that sucker. All replaceable if you are good at soldering.
    I bought a mint condition 2010 Les Paul Studio that hadn't been played much at all for $550 with hard case. After sending it to Portland Fretworks to have the truss rod, action and intonation setup, and the nut properly cut (yes, they don't cut them properly from the factory--they sit too high and also bind the G-string) the guitar played well, but sounded terrible. I took out the PCB, switch, and input jack assemblies and installed 525K CTS pots and a complete wiring kit from TAOT (the art of tone). I used the 50's wiring schematic, and the guitar absolutely shines now. I'm selling the PCB and assembly on Reverb for what the TAOT wiring kit cost me. The pots on the Gibson PCB were 260K for bridge and neck volume, and 450K for tone. The higher value pots open up the sound more and the 50's wiring also makes a huge difference. The 0.022 mfd ceramic disk caps that Gibson uses on the PCB cost literally one-cent. The orange drop caps in the new hand-wired hookup sound much better. I build fuzz pedals and hand-wired tube amps, so re-wiring a stratocaster of Les Paul guitar is a 1 on a scale of 1 to 5 difficulty. The PCB idea isn't bad--I just wish Gibson had put 500K pots and better tone caps in their build. I also recommend taking any new or used guitar to a reputable luthier shop for a proper set up--they will put an ordinary guitar in playability to compete with a custom shop model--just my two cents.

  18. #18
    Les Paul Forum Member Big Al's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    Lake Ontario shore
    Posts
    13,408

    Re: gibson pcb's - any difference

    Quote Originally Posted by Swaptronics View Post
    I bought a mint condition 2010 Les Paul Studio that hadn't been played much at all for $550 with hard case. After sending it to Portland Fretworks to have the truss rod, action and intonation setup, and the nut properly cut (yes, they don't cut them properly from the factory--they sit too high and also bind the G-string) the guitar played well, but sounded terrible. I took out the PCB, switch, and input jack assemblies and installed 525K CTS pots and a complete wiring kit from TAOT (the art of tone). I used the 50's wiring schematic, and the guitar absolutely shines now. I'm selling the PCB and assembly on Reverb for what the TAOT wiring kit cost me. The pots on the Gibson PCB were 260K for bridge and neck volume, and 450K for tone. The higher value pots open up the sound more and the 50's wiring also makes a huge difference. The 0.022 mfd ceramic disk caps that Gibson uses on the PCB cost literally one-cent. The orange drop caps in the new hand-wired hookup sound much better. I build fuzz pedals and hand-wired tube amps, so re-wiring a stratocaster of Les Paul guitar is a 1 on a scale of 1 to 5 difficulty. The PCB idea isn't bad--I just wish Gibson had put 500K pots and better tone caps in their build. I also recommend taking any new or used guitar to a reputable luthier shop for a proper set up--they will put an ordinary guitar in playability to compete with a custom shop model--just my two cents.
    Why would you buy a guitar if it sounded terrible?

    I've played many and spent some time with a pcb Standard and there was no issue at all with any of them as far as tone or performance due to the wiring.
    The older I get, the better I was.

  19. #19
    Les Paul Forum Member
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Location
    Harrisburg PA
    Posts
    33

    Re: gibson pcb's - any difference

    According to Gibson's website, the 2016 Standard has 500k volume and tone pots. What year it may have changed or for what models I cannot say.

  20. #20
    Les Paul Forum Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
    Location
    Shakedown Street
    Posts
    2,368

    Re: gibson pcb's - any difference

    [QUOTE=Daver;2669451]
    Quote Originally Posted by gania13 View Post
    hello, just signed up to this forum after i bought my first gibson les paul, a 2009 standard in ebony finish.
    i was wondering, is there any difference in sound between les pauls with regular pots and wiring, and the one's that come with the pcb's like mine?
    /QUOTE]


    Well for me and my 2012 LP Standard (purchased new), the PCB was not good at all. I fought it for two years trying different caps, modern and 50's, treble bleeds, amps, tubes, etc. trying to get satisfied with the Burstbucker Pro pups to sound good to me. Also bought classic 57's & 57 Plus Pups which didn't work any better. Nothing seemed to help very much. Until I got rid of the PCB, I wasn't satisfied. After removing it, everything improved. My experience.

    Daver
    May I ask which pickups you went with after getting rid of the PCB harness ? Then how did the pickups you choose sound ?

  21. #21
    Les Paul Forum Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
    Location
    Shakedown Street
    Posts
    2,368

    Re: gibson pcb's - any difference

    Quote Originally Posted by Big Al View Post
    No.

    However, if you think there is, you will hear one, regardless if it exists. Most people hear what they expect. Human nature.
    Prior to last summer when I switched out the harness in my Les Paul Custom it sounded like I had a string mute on (like on a Violin or Cello ) .Wow big difference .

  22. #22

    Re: gibson pcb's - any difference

    [QUOTE=El Gringo;2797994]
    Quote Originally Posted by Daver View Post

    May I ask which pickups you went with after getting rid of the PCB harness ? Then how did the pickups you choose sound ?
    This is "Swaptronics." I replied to an earlier post and wanted to make my points much clearer.

    1. The PCB wired guitars are inferior to hand wired not because of the printed circuit board, but because Gibson chooses to use 260K pots for the volume and 460K pots for tone. In addition, they use a cheap $0.01 ceramic disk cap of 0.022 mfd value. 250K pots are fine for Fender guitars with single coils. You need 500K or 525K pots to open up the sound of a good humbucker and achieve great classic tone. Otherwise, if you play your guitar with both tone pots turned all the way down, you will be quite happy with Gibson's 260K ohm volume pots.

    2. You cannot easily swap out Pots on a Gibson PCB--printed circuit board is multi-layered and pots are soldered in by the three leads, and the case.

    3. I was able to score an excellent deal on a 2010 Gibson Les Paul Studio in mint condition because the original buyer never liked it or played it.

    4. The guitar was never played much because of its tone (the lousy pots in the PCB), the poorly cut nut from the factory (too high) that caused the G-string to bind and the guitar to not stay in tune, and the guitar was in dire need of a pro-quality setup.

    5. Many people change out pickups and everything BUT the pots because they are not finding the tone and "feel" that they desire.

    6. Change out the pots to 525K, add better tone caps, and properly set the height of your humbucker pickups (lower them) for best tone and you will be amazed with the stock Gibson pickups--no need to change them out. Modern wiring schematic is good, 1959 wiring schematic is even better IMHO.

    7. You cannot hear a difference in tone or sound between a PCB with 500K pots or a hand-wired (same) guitar with 500K pots--you will absolutely hear a difference in a 260K volume pot guitar versus a 500K volume pot guitar--higher is much better.

    8. Gibson does not use 260K volume pots in its most expensive models or custom shop guitars--I doubt they use PCB's in those models, either?

    9. Gibson wants to you buy an entry level "studio" Les Paul and end up wanting more--better tone, fit and finish, features, etc.

    10. If Gibson properly wired their Les Paul Studios like a vintage 1959 Les Paul, they would sell more studios and fewer (more expensive) models IMHO.

  23. #23
    Les Paul Forum Member Big Al's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    Lake Ontario shore
    Posts
    13,408

    Re: gibson pcb's - any difference

    I'm sorry but almost all of that is not true.
    The older I get, the better I was.

  24. #24
    Les Paul Forum Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
    Location
    Shakedown Street
    Posts
    2,368

    Re: gibson pcb's - any difference

    I have a question about a common refrain that I hear and read about regarding the nut on Gibson Guitars and there is a product that helps get the nut working better -what is this called ? So the strings don't give you tunning issues esp.on the infamous G string ?

  25. #25

    Re: gibson pcb's - any difference

    Quote Originally Posted by El Gringo View Post
    I have a question about a common refrain that I hear and read about regarding the nut on Gibson Guitars and there is a product that helps get the nut working better -what is this called ? So the strings don't give you tunning issues esp.on the infamous G string ?
    Nut sauce, or you rub the slot with a pencil.
    Billy said, "Let me out. I don't want to be anywhere near a fucking banjo."

  26. #26
    Les Paul Forum Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
    Location
    Shakedown Street
    Posts
    2,368

    Re: gibson pcb's - any difference

    Quote Originally Posted by britbender View Post
    Nut sauce, or you rub the slot with a pencil.
    Ok, do you rub the nut sauce under the string directly on to the nut ? I have never done this before and I am having some tunning issues and I want to do this right ?

  27. #27

    Re: gibson pcb's - any difference

    Quote Originally Posted by Big Al View Post
    I'm sorry but almost all of that is not true.
    Which parts? His critique is subjective, except what I read regarding the values of the pots.
    Be interested to hear your views.

    BD

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  


Scroll Down And Click On All Of Our Sponsors' Logos For Their Websites!






i