Paper in oil capacitors and orange drop capacitors differ in their response to heat, voltage, current, and frequency tolerance. But a paper in oil capacitor and an orange drop capacitor of the same capacitance behave exactly in the same way.
Paper in oil capacitors were used in the 50s and the orange drop capacitors were introduced in the 60s. Stability, resistance to temperature variation, low moisture absorption, no microphonics, and excellent characteristics in AC circuits make orange capacitors better than paper in oil capacitors.
Difference Between Paper in Oil Capacitors and Orange Drop
Paper in oil capacitors and orange drop capacitors are used in tone circuits of guitars. The infamous paper in oil capacitors were first introduced to dump the treble frequencies to the ground. Then the invention of orange drop capacitors heralded a modern era.
But the type of capacitor used in the tone circuit doesn’t have any effect on the outcoming sound. The only thing that matters, in this case, is the value of the capacitance. People like tones of orange drop capacitors more only because of the Placebo effect. The features which differ both the capacitor types are the following.
Feature-1: Voltage Range
The voltage range is from 50V DC to 2000V DC for orange drop capacitors and up to 600V DC for paper in oil capacitors. So, the orange drop capacitor has a high tolerance for voltage drop.
Feature-2: Temperature Range
The operating temperature range for the orange drop capacitor is also greater than that of the paper in oil capacitors. It’s -55° Celsius to +125° for orange drop capacitors and 85°C to 100°C for paper in oil capacitors.
Feature-3: Capacitance Range
Orange drop capacitors are made with their capacitances ranging between 0.22 nF to 10 µF. The range of capacitance for paper in oil capacitors is 0.001µF to 2.000µF.
Orange drop capacitors have tolerances between 5% to 10%. The tolerance level for these types of capacitors can also be made tight as 1%. This level is low for paper in oil capacitors.
Are Paper in Oil Capacitors Better than Orange Drop
As you’ve seen both the paper in oil capacitor and the orange drop capacitor of the same value serve the same purpose. But orange drop capacitors have more stability and precision. So, you may want to choose orange drop capacitors over the paper in oil capacitors.
Figure-01: Paper in oil capacitors.
Figure-02: Orange drop capacitors.
Capacitors in Tone Circuits
Capacitors are used in the tone circuits of guitars. The more you turn your tone knob down the more the capacitor dumps the treble frequencies to the ground. Thus, it darkens the tone of your guitar. The value of the capacitance in your tone circuit determines how dark the tone will be as your turn your knob down completely.
Back in the 50s people were using 0.022 µF paper in oil capacitors. The type of capacitor used in this case doesn’t matter. The only thing that matters is the value of that capacitor. Because everything that goes through the capacitor is dumped to the ground. Capacitance controls the darkening of your tone.
Manufacturers of Paper in Oil Capacitors and Orange Drop Capacitors
Sprague Electric introduced the world to paper in oil capacitors for the first time in the 40s for the tone circuits. Sprague is best known for manufacturing electronics. Later orange capacitors were also introduced by the same company. Though now many hi-tech companies also provide these capacitors.
What Type of Capacitor Is a Sprague Orange Drop
The quality tone of a Sprague Orange Drop is very high. The transition of tone is smooth in this case. These are high-grade polyester capacitors. If you desire a more high-cut or attempt to have a darker tone, you are good to go with Sprague orange drop capacitors.
Paper in oil capacitors and orange drop capacitors both are highly used in guitars. People find differences in the tones generated by capacitors of the same capacitance because some capacitors may be old. Hence, their internal resistance gets higher producing different tones.
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