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"Rhythm Circuit" on Jazzmasters and Jaguars

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Has anybody done any modification of the Rhythm Circuit on their Jazzmasters? It seems in this day and age that it is a wasted piece of hardware on the guitar. What about turning it into something useful, like a preamp booster, or midrange or bass boost to affect both pickups, rather than switch over to the neck pup, it would engage both and add something to the sound.

Any ideas out there?

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  • 3 months later...

The rhythm circuit gives a separate volume and tone setting for the neck pickup, and an overall darker sound, even with the volume and tone controls at maximum. It was designed at a time when "standard" playing technique (at least for the musicians influencing Leo Fender at the time) involved a "softer" and darker tone for rhythm chomping, and a nice, bright, cutting tone for solos. Standard classic country music often works that way, but hardly anybody plays like that anymore, even in country music, though it's actually a useful setup, if you want to follow the classic style, sort-of. I do like the idea of darker, and brighter tones being available for the same pickup(s), though, so I had my Jaguar re-wired so that the rhythm circuit "hears" whatever I select by way of pickup(s) in the lower circuit, giving me a darker, or brighter choice for any selection- whichever one is louder, for "lead", is optional. I also had my two main pickup switches changed so that when they're both in the "down" ( formerly off) position, the pickups are in series with each other, making that another tone for either circuit. I was ambivalent about whether to include the bass-cut switch in what the upper circuit "hears", but right now that's included, and makes a very useful tone when the series option is engaged. I find that my mods give me a really wide range of useful tones for all occasions!

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  • 5 years later...

Recently bought a new Squier Jaguar from Guitar Guitar. Seems, although I could be wrong, that when I go through a pedal, and use the rhythm circuit on the guitar, the volume and tone knobs down by the bridge, don't do anything anymore. How do i decrease the volume when using the rhythm circuit please? As the two little wheels seem to just affect the tone. 

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