A little story involving a NGD (but this forum makes it hard to post pictures, so this won't be about that).

I just got a little early Christmas gift from my best friend; a Fender Modern Player Jaguar. They don't make them anymore and I had played one at a guitar store a few years back and liked how it played.

The big thing on this guitar is that it has P90 pickups (I am a big fan of P90s).

So I was anticipating its arrival for a week. When it finally arrived, I plugged it in and was immediately disappointed by how bad it sounded. So I immediately swapped the pickups on it with my other guitar which also has P90s - really good sounding P90s. It still sounded like complete garbage, with a really trebly harsh tone and no useable low end.

Then I swapped the 500k tone pot out for a 250k pot, and WOW. Like night and day, my guitar suddenly had a nice smooth, full sound to it.

It makes sense, since the general rule of thumb is that single coil pickups use 250k pots and humbuckers use 500k. I had read on a forum that you should always use 500k because you can always just roll it back, but that is simply not the case. A 500k tone pot can not be "rolled back" to sound like a 250k.

I'm not sure why Fender decided to use the 500k; IMO they would have sold a lot more of these guitars if they had just used the proper tone pot to begin with.

Tldr; guitar sounded bad, switched pickups and still sounded bad, switched the tone pot and it sounded awesome
I've always used 500K pots on my P90 guitars. I really dislike 250K pots with them. P90's are not the same kind of pickup (other than being single coil) as a standard strat or tele style Fender single coil.
You might also consider that you had a bad pot and the replacement simply fixed the problem.
Yes I am guitarded also, nice to meet you.
Quote by dspellman
I've always used 500K pots on my P90 guitars. I really dislike 250K pots with them. P90's are not the same kind of pickup (other than being single coil) as a standard strat or tele style Fender single coil.

i've never tried different pots with p90s but i was always under the impression that 500k was the standard value for p90s, too, being gibson pickups and all.
I'm an idiot and I accidentally clicked the "Remove all subscriptions" button. If it seems like I'm ignoring you, I'm not, I'm just no longer subscribed to the thread. If you quote me or do the @user thing at me, hopefully it'll notify me through my notifications and I'll get back to you.
Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
500k lets more treble through than 250k. For some P90s this perhaps is a good thing, but on my guitar and both sets of pups I tried, it just made it sound incredibly harsh and bad. When it comes down to it, if your P90s sound bad with one, try the other.
I think people underestimate the importance of the pots and caps in a guitar's circuit - they can make all the difference sometimes.

Something I've always experienced with strats is that the bridge pickup sounds much better with a tone pot connected, to my ears, every single time. even if I'm not actually turning it down. I hate the sound of a stock strat bridge pickup with no tone pot. It's harsh, brittle, and nasty.

You can also hear the difference on a vintage style jaguar or jazzmaster using the lead and rhythm circuit - same neck pickup, completely different tone, due to the fact the rhythm circuit uses lower pot values. I really enjoy the rhythm circuit - it's so smooth sounding, with a certain 'sweetness' that isn't present in the lead circuit tone.
I like analogue Solid State amps that make no effort to be "tube-like", and I'm proud of it...

...A little too proud, to be honest.
I am a firm believer in every part of your guitar rig will have an impact on your tone. Some parts provide a minor impact and some parts have a major impact.

Pots have a +/- rating for tolerance. Cheaper pots will have a tolerance rating of 15% which means a 500K pot could be a 425k to 575k. Higher quality pots will have a lower tolerance of 8% which means a 500k pot could be a 460k to 540k.

I have had a number of guitars with P90s and I think they all had 500K pots.
"We all have idols. Play like anyone you care about but try to be yourself while you're doing so." - BB King

"The thrill is being able to do it...even if you play it badly" - The Edge.

8 Guitars, 4 Amps, 3 Multi Pedals...and never done!
A lot of valid points here, especially the one about the previous pot just being bad/low quality, but the important thing is that you did something and are now happy with your sound. Congrats!!