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Thread: Something I don't know?

  1. #1
    Axetastic doublewah's Avatar
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    Something I don't know?

    Okay, so my PA needs some capacitors. I looked on ebay and the going rate is about $5 to $10 each. Sometimes a bit more.

    Then I saw this ad:
    Capacitor Rubycon 4700 4700uF 100V Electrolytic 105C Degree 35 50 1pc FL USA | eBay
    $994.50 each!

    and this, from the same seller:
    Capacitor Rubycon 4700 4700uF 100V Electrolytic 105C Degree 35 50 10pc FL USA | eBay
    $945 for 10.

    Other than the brand name, they look pretty much like the cap I'm holding in my hand. They don't look like they have diamonds inside, or like maybe they are only for spaceships.

    Are Rubicon caps really worth 100 times other caps? Or even 10 times?
    Or are these ads a mistake, or maybe a joke? The ads say that lots have been sold.
    I bought a relic'd guitar because I liked the way it sounded. Then I refinished it because I didn't like the way it looked.

  2. #2
    Super Moderator die Bullen's Avatar
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    I have never heard of caps costing a thousand dollars each- I would simply get one off one of the reputable amplifier parts sites.

    Maybe he's banking on someone not paying attention and bidding? I can't imagine 63 other people paid $1000 per cap either

  3. #3
    Axetastic doublewah's Avatar
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    Yeah, strange, huh?

    $100 a cap for really high-end stereo gear would not surprise me. Guitar players sometimes pay $50 a cap, no?
    But $1000 was a head-scratcher. So was the fact that the same seller sells the same caps for $100 and $1000 in different ads. Would not a potential buyer see the $100 ad when he found the $1000 ad?

    As for the 63 previous buyers - Can an ebay seller change his stats? I don't think so, but what do I know?
    I bought a relic'd guitar because I liked the way it sounded. Then I refinished it because I didn't like the way it looked.

  4. #4
    Super Moderator die Bullen's Avatar
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    Maybe the 63 previous buyers were the guy from the Movie Brewster's Millions trying to get rid of his first fortune!

  5. #5
    Axe-honerated spellcaster's Avatar
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    I've been puzzling over this subject for a few days.

    I wondered if the Rubycon capacitors were a premium-grade product that had special sonic properties that would make them desirable for audiophile audio or critical studio applications. Spent a couple of days reading about caps, and came to the conclusion that Rubycon is nothing special.

    Like most manufacturers of caps, Rubicon (of Japan) makes a wide range of caps, in differing types and quality levels. The best of their products are equal to other benchmark brands, such as Panasonic, but there's nothing magical that will make them sound better in the audio path.

    What I have seen repeatedly is warnings about buying Rubycon caps on eBay. Apparently, the Chinese are finding counterfeit capacitors to be a lucrative market. A lot of these too-good-to-be-true counterfeits have a very small under-spec cap (generally take-offs from old junked HP computers) that are mounted in larger "rubycon" cases. In some cases, the internal connections are actually crimped in place......and because the actual junk cap doesn't meet the specs of the outside can, they explode pretty regularly.

    I won't get into the cork-sniffing discussions about whether one type or brand of cap will sound better with your guitar tone control, but if you do decide to use Rubycons, buy them from a credible North American source, rather than the off-shore eBay specials.
    "I know just enough to be dangerous....."

  6. #6
    Axe-honerated zontar's Avatar
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    It's probably all hype, not even mostly hype.
    I've been a pilgrim on this earth, since the day of my birth, I'm a long way from my home.

  7. #7
    Axetastic doublewah's Avatar
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    Thanks for the detective work, Spell. That is pretty hilarious, although in a diabolical kind of way.

    It still doesn't answer why this one seller has two ads, one 10 times the price of the other.

    Don't worry - I will be buying $10 caps for this repair job.
    I bought a relic'd guitar because I liked the way it sounded. Then I refinished it because I didn't like the way it looked.

  8. #8
    Axellent Member Mreilander's Avatar
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    Do you have a local electronics parts store?
    Just take the caps in and they will match them with current equivalents. Brand doesn't matter. What matters is the type of material, specs and tolerances.

    Some vintage audio purists will search out New Old Stock for certain applications, but the reality is that an electrolytic cap is an electrolytic cap.

    If you cant find one locally, I have a local store that will carry something that will meet your needs.

    What I have seen repeatedly is warnings about buying Rubycon caps on eBay. Apparently, the Chinese are finding counterfeit capacitors to be a lucrative market. A lot of these too-good-to-be-true counterfeits have a very small under-spec cap (generally take-offs from old junked HP computers) that are mounted in larger "rubycon" cases. In some cases, the internal connections are actually crimped in place......and because the actual junk cap doesn't meet the specs of the outside can, they explode pretty regularly.
    I actually recently read a thread where a guitar repair shop was selling NOS bumblebees. The thread starter told the guitar shop to let him destroy one. If it's real, he would pay for it, if not they had to remove them from the shelves. The shop owner was so sure that they were real that he readily agreed. The guy pulled out his pocket knife and sliced open the bumblebee to find a cheap chic-let cap inside. The poor shop owner had been taken, and presumably his supplier had been taken as well.

  9. #9
    Axetastic doublewah's Avatar
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    Yeah, I am carrying one of the old caps in my glove box for next time I am in the neighbourhood of parts shops. But I thought I would have a look at ebay anyway.

    Your bumblebee story supports what Spell shared. Caveat emptor...
    I bought a relic'd guitar because I liked the way it sounded. Then I refinished it because I didn't like the way it looked.

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