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Is it possible to convert a 250 kΩ potentiometer to 500 kΩ or a 500 kΩ stereo potentiometer to mono?

I am finding it difficult to locate a 500 kΩ mono potentiometer.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Browsing the datasheets of a manufacturer such as Bourns will give you all the information so you know it will fit, have the right kind of shaft and so on. For example this one. \$\endgroup\$
    – jonathanjo
    Commented Apr 1, 2023 at 15:00
  • \$\begingroup\$ If you're in a developed country, try mail order. Especially places that specialize in guitar parts. \$\endgroup\$
    – TimWescott
    Commented Apr 1, 2023 at 15:40
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    \$\begingroup\$ 500km is a lonnnnggggg potentiometer. Why do you think you need a 500 k\$\Omega\$ potentiometer? \$\endgroup\$
    – Transistor
    Commented Apr 1, 2023 at 15:42
  • \$\begingroup\$ Mouser, Digikey and RS ships all over the world. Find the right part for the job. \$\endgroup\$
    – winny
    Commented Apr 1, 2023 at 15:58
  • \$\begingroup\$ Guitar pots work by loading down the pickups, they short the signal to ground. This means a 500k pot will load them LESS than a 250k. But in reality, you're going to find VERY VERY little audible difference between 250k and 500k. To prove this to yourself, you can completely remove the pot from the circuit (which removes ANY loading), and plug the guitar in. That will give you the theoretical "best sound". If you hear no difference, then changing pots will not help you at all. \$\endgroup\$
    – Kyle B
    Commented Apr 1, 2023 at 16:38

1 Answer 1

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A 500k stereo pot could be used for mono, it's just two pots ganged together so you'd only connect one of the pots in it. It would need to physically fit though, a stereo pot is generally going to be larger than a mono one.

You also have to make sure you get the correct taper. Pots come in different tapers, such as linear where the resistance changes evenly as you turn the shaft, or audio where the change in resistance is roughly logarithmic to match our hearing response. Volume controls are usually audio taper, tone controls might be linear if they're the cut/boost type where center position is flat response.

You might be able to get away with a 250k pot for volume, although it may affect the overall sound as it changes the impedance the pickups and amp see, to use one for tone the capacitor values would also need to be changed. If you have some on hand you could try it, if you're buying new ones you'll want to stick with the original values.

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