Your favorite volume control?

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Hi there,

I am building a tubed preamp and need a good-sounding volume control, stereo, "swipe" (not stepped).

These used to be obtainable. Now it seems they are all cheap and from China. What happened!?!? Anybody know of a good quality source? Like, $10 - $50?

Best Volume Control

Penny and Giles, they produce sliding controls for Allen & Heath and are almost unbeatable. They are UK made but available mostly anywhere. Otherwise we are limited to Alps or Panasonic for realistically designed and quiet carbon controls. Try RS or Farnel for a few ideas.

Immediately, I thought of Penny & Giles even before I opened this thread!

If you can live with a drop of around 6dB then shunting the pot with Z foils will give you a far superior volume control than building a shunt att. even using a Seiden switch made using Welwyn RC55Y resistors - I know because that is what I found over 11 years ago.

By using this simple system as long as the pot is even between channels the pot itself does'nt matter because it is shunted out of the way. I tried many different resistors and all are coloured except the Z foils, I hav'nt used the Caddocks which many rate very highly or on a par with Vishay Z foils but I refuse to comment on something I have no personal experience of.

The 'received wisdom' is to use 90% of the pot value. The cheapest place to buy Z foils is from Texas Components a very good company to deal with directly, do not buy from Chalfont in Wales as they are a 'preferred supplier' by the MOD. They used to be 3 x times the price of TC but I believe they have dropped their prices a little embarrassed by the price differential with TC.
I looked at the specs for this KKA pot and found that they do a 25K version, OK a 35K one would be better for my purposes as I want to shunt it with Z foils - highly rec.

Then I took a look at Digikey/fr (where I live) and I was certain what I would find - €21 + €18 shipping - which is why I never buy anything in France, they are killing their business. Even Digikey/uk only charge £12 which is still a rip-off shipping cost.

Then I took a look at Digikey/ca - shipping cost - $8 ca - entirely reasonable.

Any Canadian putting in an order with Digikey/ca? - I would rather use Paypal and pay for shipping onto France than buy here.
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