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Thread: Silo Special Silent Circui: Yes or No?

  1. #1

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    Silo Special Silent Circui: Yes or No?

    How many of you have disconnected your silent circuit?

    I'm asking because I bought a used Silo Special and discovered the previous owner disconnected it.
    I was wondering why it didn't seem to make any difference.

    The him is a pain, but not a huge deal. I don't tend to play with tonnes of gain.

    Is it worth getting it reconnected? From my limited technical abilities it just seems like he unsoldered the wires to the battery, but it could be more involved.

    I've read that techs have a difficult time with it, and to get it right I would have to send it back to MM.

    So I'm wondering if I should bother.

    Does it really make that big a difference?

    Thanks.

  2. #2

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    One possible answer is to to try to play a silo special that has it connected, in a shop etc, and then make a judgement whether it is worthwhile getting yours reconnected, I personally like the cleaner sound it brings, but for me that is quite marginal.

  3. #3

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    Do you have it?

    Glenn |B)
    Silhouette Special SSS in the first Fuschia Sparkle (Hardtail) [1/01/2002] [1 of a kind from CLB]
    Silhouette Special HSS in Gold Sparkle (Hardtail) [7/12/2002] [Made for Matchbox 20]
    Albert Lee 3 MM90's in White Sparkle (Hardtail) [8/14/2001] [NOS Just pure awesomeness]
    Albert Lee HH in Black Sugar (Hartail) [1/06/2011] [BFR with the 12th fret logo]


    Like BP said in the Chapman video "You've got a room full of guitars, and no money!! @ 6:00"

  4. #4

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    I personally think that it doesn't make a ton of difference.
    Black Cherry Burst Albert Lee , SSS,Trem & Piezo 2005
    Black LE Albert Lee MM90,Trem 2006 with solid 9k gold knobs;Mesa F50 Combo; Original (owned from new)Marshall 25/50 Silver Jubilee signed by Jim;AER 60 ;WEM Clubman 5W;Musicman RP 65 112;Musicman RD 50 112:
    Fender Jaguar Modern - P90's

  5. #5

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    Any tech that cannot handle the silent circuit is lacking skills to be a good tech. Yes, the circuit is a more complicated than basic strat wiring but anyone who can deal with a 5-way super switch can handle this without difficulty. There is no reason to send it back to Music Man. (I have rewired my Silhouette Special a few times, including re-building the circuit from scratch). What is the production date of you guitar? I can send you the correct schematic (assuming the parts in your guitar are still original).

    Does the Silent Circuit make a difference? Yes. How much? As with ANY similar system on the market the consensus is about a 50%-70% reduction in noise. And that's helpful. The amount of noise reduction is adjustable via a simple trim pot on top of the Silent Circuit unit. If you are happy with the sound of guitar now and don't feel the need for the silent circuit, you can just leave it be. The guitar is well shielded internally so even without the silent circuit it'll still be a little quieter than the average strat.

    Personally, I did eventually replace my pickups for DiMarzio Area single coils (which are noise cancelling) but that's more to do with my perfectionist ears recording and gigging in noisy environments. At home, I wouldn't care.
    Forum Moderator, Guitar Teacher and Guitar Tech, Folder of Underpants, Stubber of Toes.
    Irish/American in Paris

    Silhouette Special (2005 Buttercream Limited Edition)
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  6. #6

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    I used my Al a lot for gigging prior to Covid. All kinds of venues with different types of lights. I just back the volume pot off - it really didn't cause any problems. If you are sat on top of a computer at home then maybe that will cause noise?
    With that being said, I don't know what power supply you have in your neck of the woods but I have to say I laughed when I read this, from a guy in the UK a while back .....
    A common misconception born of the inter-webz, with so much being US-centric. Their mains is 60Hz AC whereas UK is 240v (ostensibly) and 50Hz AC, so if we are not in fact the 51st state, and still have 50Hz mains, your 60Hz hum is coming from a very long way away !

    The silent circuit I bleeb is set for 60 cycle and would need adjusting in the UK ..... but hey, I'm no electronics expert ... I just play 'em, along with 100's of thousands of Fender players who manage with a bit of hum bless their souls.
    Last edited by Spudmurphy; 08-24-2020 at 07:55 AM.
    Black Cherry Burst Albert Lee , SSS,Trem & Piezo 2005
    Black LE Albert Lee MM90,Trem 2006 with solid 9k gold knobs;Mesa F50 Combo; Original (owned from new)Marshall 25/50 Silver Jubilee signed by Jim;AER 60 ;WEM Clubman 5W;Musicman RP 65 112;Musicman RD 50 112:
    Fender Jaguar Modern - P90's

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by GWDavis28 View Post
    Do you have it?

    Glenn |B)
    The guitar I have.
    The silent circuit, I don't know. I removed the battery cover, to see if the connections were loose, and discovered the wired that should be attached to the battery terminals were desoldered. There is nothing else in the cavity.
    If the silent circuit is supposed to be located in the cavity,then it's been removed. If it's located under the oickguard, then it could be intact. I would have to remove the pickguard to find out.
    Last edited by GrooveMerchant; 08-24-2020 at 08:01 AM.

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by tj1 View Post
    One possible answer is to to try to play a silo special that has it connected, in a shop etc, and then make a judgement whether it is worthwhile getting yours reconnected, I personally like the cleaner sound it brings, but for me that is quite marginal.
    I don't think any stores in my area have any in stock. I've never seen a new one in a store. I think it's more of a special order thing around here.

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by DrKev View Post
    Any tech that cannot handle the silent circuit is lacking skills to be a good tech. Yes, the circuit is a more complicated than basic strat wiring but anyone who can deal with a 5-way super switch can handle this without difficulty. There is no reason to send it back to Music Man. (I have rewired my Silhouette Special a few times, including re-building the circuit from scratch). What is the production date of you guitar? I can send you the correct schematic (assuming the parts in your guitar are still original).

    Does the Silent Circuit make a difference? Yes. How much? As with ANY similar system on the market the consensus is about a 50%-70% reduction in noise. And that's helpful. The amount of noise reduction is adjustable via a simple trim pot on top of the Silent Circuit unit. If you are happy with the sound of guitar now and don't feel the need for the silent circuit, you can just leave it be. The guitar is well shielded internally so even without the silent circuit it'll still be a little quieter than the average strat.

    Personally, I did eventually replace my pickups for DiMarzio Area single coils (which are noise cancelling) but that's more to do with my perfectionist ears recording and gigging in noisy environments. At home, I wouldn't care.
    Thank you.
    The production date is January 2007.

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by GrooveMerchant View Post
    The guitar I have.
    The silent circuit, I don't know. I removed the battery cover, to see if the connections were loose, and discovered the wired that should be attached to the battery terminals were desoldered. There is nothing else in the cavity.
    If the silent circuit is supposed to be located in the cavity,then it's been removed. If it's located under the oickguard, then it could be intact. I would have to remove the pickguard to find out.
    Yah I was asking about the silent circuit. If it were in there it would be stuck to the under side of the pick guard, it's a small black cylinder (can) with some wires coming out of it.

    It would look like this:



    Glenn |B)
    Last edited by GWDavis28; 08-24-2020 at 11:01 AM.
    Silhouette Special SSS in the first Fuschia Sparkle (Hardtail) [1/01/2002] [1 of a kind from CLB]
    Silhouette Special HSS in Gold Sparkle (Hardtail) [7/12/2002] [Made for Matchbox 20]
    Albert Lee 3 MM90's in White Sparkle (Hardtail) [8/14/2001] [NOS Just pure awesomeness]
    Albert Lee HH in Black Sugar (Hartail) [1/06/2011] [BFR with the 12th fret logo]


    Like BP said in the Chapman video "You've got a room full of guitars, and no money!! @ 6:00"

  11. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by GWDavis28 View Post
    Yah I was asking about the silent circuit. If it were in there it would be stuck to the under side of the pick guard, it's a small black cylinder (can) with some wires coming out of it.

    It would look like this:



    Glenn |B)
    I will try to have a look this evening.

    Thanks.

  12. #12

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    Yes yes yes Silent Circuit!

    There's zero downside to have it installed. (I have on in just about every guitar- I use it for coil splitting as well as quieting single coils.) Yes, it's not going to make things as quiet as noiseless pickups, but it does a damn good job, and you can adjust the output as need be.

    It doesn't make your pickups active. It's simply a dummy coil, wired to a buffer (which buffers ONLY the out-of-phase hum). If you don't like it, just pull the battery out, and you get the same effect as having it out of the circuit.

    If you need a hand wiring it up, drop me a line.

  13. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by Spudmurphy View Post
    The silent circuit I bleeb is set for 60 cycle and would need adjusting in the UK ..... but hey, I'm no electronics expert ... I just play 'em, along with 100's of thousands of Fender players who manage with a bit of hum bless their souls.
    Spud- the SC picks up the same noise your pickups would (it's just a coil without a magnet under the hood), so it doesn't matter what frequency your power runs at
    Last edited by beej; 08-24-2020 at 12:04 PM.

  14. #14

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    So, I took off the pickguard, and the silent circuit unit is there, and everything seems to be connected except the 2 wires that attach to the battery terminals.
    So, to resolder the battery the red wire goes to the positive terminal, yes?
    And does the black wire go to the negative terminal?
    Last edited by GrooveMerchant; 08-24-2020 at 07:00 PM.

  15. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by GrooveMerchant View Post
    So, I took off the pickguard, and the silent circuit unit is there, and everything seems to be connected except the 2 wires that attach to the battery terminals.
    So, to resolder the battery the red wire goes to the positive terminal, yes?
    And does the black wire go to the negative terminal?
    Yup, you got it. Nice that it's there.

    Glenn |B)
    Silhouette Special SSS in the first Fuschia Sparkle (Hardtail) [1/01/2002] [1 of a kind from CLB]
    Silhouette Special HSS in Gold Sparkle (Hardtail) [7/12/2002] [Made for Matchbox 20]
    Albert Lee 3 MM90's in White Sparkle (Hardtail) [8/14/2001] [NOS Just pure awesomeness]
    Albert Lee HH in Black Sugar (Hartail) [1/06/2011] [BFR with the 12th fret logo]


    Like BP said in the Chapman video "You've got a room full of guitars, and no money!! @ 6:00"

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