Can we talk amps here?

Discussion in 'THE Gretsch Discussion Forum' started by NiterideGuitarist, Nov 24, 2020.

  1. NiterideGuitarist

    NiterideGuitarist Electromatic

    Jun 4, 2016
    Rochester, NY
    I’m 70 now & still have my 1st amp. At 16 years old I bought my 1965 Fender Super Reverb. Go big or stay home was the plan then! Back then I could carry it! Never used the bright switch. Only turned up to 10 once to play just ONE single note for curiosity. All I’m gonna say is WOW! The rest of the time I played at a volume of 2+. I’m a Rock & Blues rhythm player that stopped gigging about 4 years ago. The aptly named Super Reverb sits against the wall hiding under the cover. Although I flatter myself a “Buy American” kind of guy, I purchased a second hand Canadian made Traynor, much lighter weight 20 watt 20WCR (valve (tube) amp w/ (1) 12” speaker & reverb) to gig with. IMHO it is a clean amp. Because of that experience, I recently bought a 2nd Traynor, only a little heavier 40 watt version. Before purchasing it, I read about the Fender Blues Jr, Mesa Boogie and DeVille amps. If you have any experience with Traynor I’d like to hear your thoughts.
  2. rake_ether

    rake_ether Gretschie

    Aug 24, 2019
    Athens, GA USA
    I have a Traynor YCV20 and like it although I don't have much experience with amps as it is my first and only tube amp. The reverb is pretty useless, but maybe it just needs some work. Anyway, I have a reverb pedal so it's no big deal. I plan on keeping it and possibly swap the speaker which is not original. My tech says "buy American" and I said "how about North American"?
    T-Bawler, pmac11 and Rmccamey like this.
  3. Byron

    Byron Country Gent

    Sep 4, 2009
    I played a festival here called Boomtown. They'd borrowed a vintage blackface Super Reverb. Also begged me not to blow it up, which I didn't. But I did get to put it all the way up. And it made me smile. So rare to play at that volume. Its so great that you have the same amp for all these years. Most of us have sorry tales of amps we should have kept
    Trash Kidd, T-Bawler and wabash slim like this.
  4. wabash slim

    wabash slim Gretschified

    Feb 10, 2010
    lafayette in
    Should've kept, should've gotten in the first place, never should've have bought, never should've sold, glad I did, glad I didn't, and why did I, etc.

    Should have gotten that Ampeg J12R, or a Fender Vibroverb. Should've kept a Gibson GSS100 just for curiosity's sake. Should've kept the Deluxe Reverb, the Ampeg B-18X, and the early '60s Dual Showman. Oddly, I never got rid of guitars I liked.

    Then, I think of the cars I should've got or kept.
  5. pilgrim

    pilgrim Country Gent

    Jun 15, 2010
    I'm 73, I gave my grandson my first amp, I bought it new a Gibson Falcon. He asked for one of my Fenders. What cha gonna do!
    T-Bawler likes this.
  6. stiv

    stiv Country Gent

    Sep 12, 2014
    Firenze, Italy
    Man, you’ve been a lucky guy to have a Super Reverb as first amp. My first amp was a crap solid state Italian made 1x12 combo by FBT, no wonder I don’t have it anymore :). We use to play guitar and bass on it as my bass player couldn’t afford to buy one, while my drummer played on industrial soap boxes and kitchenware.
    I’ve had a nice ‘64 Super Reverb myself when I had a job and money to flush (=no wife)... beautiful amp but like you I was tired to drag it at gigs so I sold it. But that thing could really rock the room. Awesome pedal platform too.
  7. lathoto

    lathoto Synchromatic

    Apr 23, 2020
    My old Super Reverb was in my top ten amps of all time. Go for a custom rig with three components. A 12 watt AB763 head, a 6G15 reverb unit, and a single twelve speaker cabinet. They will all be lighter and more manageable while not sacrificing that clean Blackface sound.
  8. Randy99CL

    Randy99CL Country Gent

    Feb 17, 2020
    My older brother Steve and my best friend Steve both bought Super Reverbs in the '60s so I've always had a soft spot and wanted to get one of those. But in real life they weight a ton, are worth their weight in gold and I'll be much happier with just my new GTX100. The Super Reverb preset sounds great.

    But I am amazed by the fantastic amps I see on FB and CL every day. It is hard not to grab up some of them just to see what they sound like.
    Today there is a Peavey 100W tube head for $250 and a Marshall 4x12 cab for $150, wow.
    T-Bawler likes this.
  9. BrianW

    BrianW Country Gent

    Oct 21, 2014
    Vancouver Island
    I went the other way with Traynor amps... started with the 40 watt and went to the 20 for use at home. Both were great, but I find the 20 is more than enough for me.
    rake_ether likes this.
  10. BFTmarshall

    BFTmarshall Synchromatic

    Jan 12, 2020
  11. journeyman

    journeyman Gretschie

    Aug 20, 2009
    Toronto, Ontario
    The 60s and 70s Traynor's sound great with some simple mods, like changing the potentiometer values. Most need caps by now. Some, like the old Mark series weighed a ton due to the huge Hammond transformers, but are great amps. They had EL34 or similar power tubes. There was a series of combo amps called, Guitarmate, Bassmate, etc., and they are worth looking into. I think these had EL84 power tubes. The cabinets are a little bulky, and the stock Canadian made Marsland speakers were utter crap. One of those heads, fixed up by a good amp tech and put in a manageable cabinet would be great, but in the end, it adds up to an expensive amp that one could probably never recoup the cost from.

    The university where I teach has some modern Traynors that seem to be a hybrid of tubes and solid state; I don't like them at all. It's possible that they reissued some of the old designs, but I have no direct knowledge of that. When I was a teenager just starting out, most of us couldn't afford Fenders so we played Traynors. The Marsland speakers were the weak link, but the amps themselves were well designed, with the exception of some odd part and pot values, and of course all hand made. I remember running my law suit Les Paul through my 'stack' with it turned up to 10; must have been loud.
  12. wildeman

    wildeman I Bleed Orange

    May 10, 2015
    I think that Super will do just about anything, and do it exceptionally well. You got it right the first time.
  13. loudnlousy

    loudnlousy Gretschified

    Oct 18, 2015
    I went for 4 decades with my original Marshall 1965 JTM45. Until I could not justify to keep it anymore for my family´s sake. (These went totally through the roof and I desperately needed some cash at the point of time. )

    Don`t give up your " home-amp" as long as you can afford to keep it. Please. Unless you are not biased to that special special tone.
  14. SAguitar

    SAguitar Synchromatic

    Jan 17, 2020
    Jack Plate, Oregon
    Where I grew up the standard amp seemed to be the renowned Fender Twin Reverb, and like they weren't heavy enough most of the guys would put JBL's in them with their massive magnets.

    The only large amp I have left is a Fender Bassman 50 that I think I bought in about 1972. It still rocks at a huge volume.
    MotorCentaur and T-Bawler like this.
  15. VRomanojr

    VRomanojr Electromatic

    Dec 4, 2012
    West Virginia
    This thread has moved away from the OP's question to nostalgia. I have no Traynor experience but plenty of nostalgia.
    My first amp (bought with paperboy money) was a Bandmaster with the big 2-12" speakers cabinet. Next may have been a 1960 Vibrasonic with a 15" JBL. It was too perfect to play o0ut so sold it to buy a blackface Super. Blew a speaker or two so put it into a head cabinet (a plywood box!) and ran it through a 2-15" big Bassman cab. Then a blackface Pro I should have kept. Next a new 1984ish Concert. I didn't want to use a dirt pedal but the Concert second channel never really did it for me. Still have this one. Then a Blues Jr, then a Hot Rod Deluxe, then another Blues Jr to go with the Hot Rod. Then a 1973 Deluxe Reverb and a 73 Princeton. Sold the Hot Rod and Jr, bought a 1973 Champ. So, 4 amps today, Concert, Deluxe, Princeton, Champ. I told a friend that I've never owned anything but Fender tube amps and that should be written on my tombstone but nobody really cares. He promised he would stand up at my wake and tell the assembled multitudes, "Vince never owned anything but Fender tube amps".
    MotorCentaur, T-Bawler and Maxadur like this.
  16. dspellman

    dspellman Electromatic

    Jul 4, 2020
    Los Angeles
    For decades you could walk into a guitar store and ask about guitar rigs and the answer would always be the same: Buy a Strat or Les Paul (alike) and have a Fender Twin for practice/rehearsal and a Marshall full stack for playing "out."
    new6659 likes this.
  17. BohemianLikeMe

    BohemianLikeMe Gretschie

    Apr 18, 2020
    Prague, CZ
    I never get too attached to amps. In the end, they're just tools-- but I've played some really great Traynors over the years. The Bassmate YBA-2A is a fantastic little 6v6 head that gets filthy when you pushed it.
    Tony65x55 and new6659 like this.
  18. Gretschtim1

    Gretschtim1 Country Gent

    Dec 4, 2012
    Dundalk, Md
    I don't have any experience with Traynor amps but Fender Super Reverb amps are great. All Fender amps from the Champ to the Super Twin all have a different sound. Just like Tweed, Brown Face & Black Face are all different. Since you've owned and played that Super Reverb for 55 years you will be the first to know that no other amp Fender or otherwise sounds quite like it. I've owned a dozen or so Fender amps and they all have their own character. That said for a lighter and smaller amp the Princeton & Deluxe amps are work horses and are what I get the most use out of these days (along with my Vox AC 15). They are still loud enough to do most gigs these days but are easier to lift. My first big amp was a 1971 Bassman with the tall 2-15 cabinet. I still use that cabinet in the studio along with a modded 67 to 6G6 head. If I'd know better back then I would have bought a Super Reverb. My most traveled amp was a 63 Bandmaster that I loved but I stupidly sold it. As Wabash Slim said "Should've kept"...:D.
  19. pmac11

    pmac11 Country Gent

    Mar 4, 2018
    Toronto, Ontario
    Pete Traynor designed some classics.
    Rmccamey and new6659 like this.
  20. NiterideGuitarist

    NiterideGuitarist Electromatic

    Jun 4, 2016
    Rochester, NY
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