The Workbench

Tone pot: can I roll off high AND low frequencies?


I love the wide sonic spectrum of my 6120 through a fender amp. But, sometimes it's too much--like when I am using some heavy overdrive.

I don't just want to tame the highs, I want to tighten the lows too. I have an EQ pedal, but squatting down to mess with it to dial it in for each drive pedal when I switch is a pain. So I had the idea (I'm sure I'm not the first) to convert the tone knob on my guitar to go from flat EQ on one end to mid-humped EQ on the other end by passively rolling off highs AND lows.

Is this doable/desirable or am I missing something?


It can be done. If you google "Passive Treble/Bass tone circuit".

or go to this page...


you will find something that might work.

The Stage models of Fender Rhodes pianos had a Bass Boost knob which in reality was a bass cut that was fully on at 0 and fully off at 10... these worked in a similar way.


Yes you can! I just installed this in my Casino, inspired by the Reverend guitars with the "bass contour" knob. It can sound downright Fendery when you thin out those P90s, and removing all that low-end makes it awfully resistant to feedback.

I think every hollowbody should have this


Gretsch did it for a while in the 1950s with a stacked tone pot. One pot was cutting bass as it turned up and the other was cutting treble as it turned down.

Here's the pot you'd need:

And if you want to make it extra pretty, you can get reproduction caps here:

Or do it the easy way, and buy a little kit from Fender


The Gretsch unit uses two caps, while the Fender one uses a cap and a resistor. So, obviously not the same design, but from what I've read, it creates a similar result.


The schematic above (I believe created by Setzer?) shows a .001 cap for the top pot. FWIW, the one I had was .002.

Also, Photobucket can suck it with their stupid watermark. What in the hell do they think their accomplishing with it anyway? Just continually reminding people what a craptastic company they are?


This is exactly why every pedal which provides some degree of overdrive or distortion should have at least a treble cut and a bass cut knob. A Big Muff or Tonebender might be ok with just a tone knob but and overdrive should have a bass knob as well. It's crazy not to.

BTW G+L guitars like the S500 have two tone knobs - one is a treble cut and one is a bass cut. You may be able to find a schematic for them online too.


Yeah, I've got a Fender Greasebucket sitting here... been meaning to put it in my #1 tele, just never got around to it....

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