Fender Amp Advice Needed

Discussion in 'Ampage Area' started by colchar, Feb 18, 2021.

  1. Highroller

    Highroller Synchromatic

    966
    Jun 11, 2015
    Portland, OR
    I happen to pair up my '65 DR Reissue with my AC30CC2 when I want a stereo rig and it sounds flat out great! Now I say that, granting that for my particular purpose, the AC30 is probably overkill. An AC15 might be a more logical choice, but nevertheless, the two work well with each other.

    Imho, you just can't go wrong with a Deluxe Reverb. It doesn't have any minuses. It's one of the most versatile amps ever made. Everybody should have one.
     
    Chmason85 likes this.
  2. colchar

    colchar Electromatic

    40
    Oct 5, 2020
    Southern Ontario

    I used to have an earlier version of the Mustang and found that I spent far too much time farting around with settings. I like simplicity. If the Pro Jr. had a 12" speaker I'd be all over it.
     
  3. colchar

    colchar Electromatic

    40
    Oct 5, 2020
    Southern Ontario

    I've been reading a lot of comments online that say they don't sound great at low volume (due to the bright cap, I believe), and I think the same was said about how they take pedals at low volumes (I believe because of the bright cap as well).
     
  4. Robbie

    Robbie Friend of Fred

    Age:
    67
    Jun 17, 2013
    Sarnia Ontario Canada
    I’m a big fan of the ‘68 Custom Deluxe Reverb. Stock, no speaker swap...as is does a fabulous job. A word of caution with them. Some people have had trouble with the Tremolo circuit. The fix is fairly simple but I’d suggest you are satisfied it’s not an issue with a particular one before you leave the store with it, if that’s how you went. I’ve had two and kept one. The one I have is bullet proof and has been a great amp. I moved the other one out to buy a Tone Master Deluxe Reverb.
     
  5. colchar

    colchar Electromatic

    40
    Oct 5, 2020
    Southern Ontario

    I would be dealing with L&M so they offer a warranty, even with used gear. It can be extended for very little money.

    I once bought a vintage '67 Traynor from them and it came with a warranty! Which other retail chain would offer that eh?

    Their warranty also has a 'no lemon' clause so if there are repeated problems they will simply replace the amp.
     
    Robbie likes this.
  6. Personal Gsus

    Personal Gsus Electromatic

    Age:
    47
    19
    Feb 10, 2021
    Atlanta
    Yes, you're right – I was confusing it's price with the Rumble 500 that I bought around the same time.

    Like any other emulator, it uses software to replicate the specific frequency/response characteristics of a target sound profile. On the GTX, the defaults get very close. With additional tweaking, you can get them even closer.

    It can be a very subjective thing, and it's certainly not going to satisfy any purists standing in a room with the two amps sided by side. But for all practical purposes, in a compressed mix with other instruments, you wouldn't know the difference unless you were told.
     
  7. Robbie

    Robbie Friend of Fred

    Age:
    67
    Jun 17, 2013
    Sarnia Ontario Canada
    L & M have always treated me well. That’s where I bought one of the two 68 CDRs
     
    colchar likes this.
  8. Highroller

    Highroller Synchromatic

    966
    Jun 11, 2015
    Portland, OR
    Depends on what you define as "low volume". I use it at about 2-1/2 on a regular basis, which is loud enough to get some clarity, but not so much as to disturb the neighbors (I live in a house, not an apartment). Sounds great, especially clean. As for pedals, I'm not a heavy user, maybe some delay and a little boost for dirt, but I'm not plugging in a whole chain of TurboRats on a regular basis. What I do use however, sounds fine.

    If I was shopping for one today, I'd want to A/B the '65 RI against the Tonemaster version, which I keep reading very good things about.

    Side note: I just finalized the install on a new set of T-Armonds in my Silver Jet yesterday, plugged that baby into my DR, and wow! You better believe I was grinning from ear to ear - It sounded Amazing!
     
    colchar likes this.
  9. colchar

    colchar Electromatic

    40
    Oct 5, 2020
    Southern Ontario

    At that volume, how loud would it be for other people in your house?
     
  10. Highroller

    Highroller Synchromatic

    966
    Jun 11, 2015
    Portland, OR
    Not objectionable, but you hear it throughout the house. Sort of like a loud stereo.

    Look, I shouldn't need to mention that of the four amps you listed, none of them are exactly bedroom practice amps. A Twin Reverb? Gimme a break! How's that AC-30 sound at low volume? I know mine needs to crank a bit to get that true Vox tone.

    If you're looking for a practice amp, that's a whole different ball game.

    Keeping with Fenders, you probably want to look at some Princetons, some Champs, or the GTX line (if you want a "modern" solution). Personally, I've been interested in those little Yamaha THR amps. They've been getting great reviews and they "glow" - I might get one just because of that! LoL!

    THR10.jpg
     
    colchar likes this.
  11. Sid Nitzerglobin

    Sid Nitzerglobin Country Gent

    Jun 8, 2015
    fROMOHIO
    Never owned a '68 Custom RI of any variety, but have played through a bunch of them. Of the list provided I'd go for the '65 DRRI, the '68 Custom DRRI seems a bit more brittle/pinched to my ears although either seem a bit much for home use for me (at min volume it's a bit loud for late night/conversation level noodling & the amp wasn't even close to the sweet spot for me until you're getting pretty close to earplug territory).

    Myself I've landed on a '74 Vibrolux Reverb as the Fender I'll be hanging onto for the indefinite future. The 2 x10 makes for a real nice stack w/ an open pine 1x12 w/ a Weber Signature Alnico. They're 40W but mine seems to do better at low volume than the either of the '65 DRRIs I've had w/ a bit more headroom & output on tap. I really like the trem on it as well. I snagged mine for less than a new TRRI & just a bit more than a new DRRI, but it's going to be more of a hunt for one of them.

    .02/YMMV/etc. ;)
     
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  12. colchar

    colchar Electromatic

    40
    Oct 5, 2020
    Southern Ontario
    I have found lately that louder amps sound better at low volumes than smaller amps turned up. The Twin that I had before sounded full and rich at low volumes (maybe it is the 2x12s, a format I am firmly sold on now). The problem with amps like the Princeton are that I won't go smaller than a 12" speaker (although I would consider 2x10 or 4x10). I had a Princeton and liked it, but coming from larger amps with multiple speakers it would sound too boxy.


    I am torn between the Twin and the Deluxes though. I can get a '65 Twin for $899 which is local, so no shipping charges. I can get Deluxes (both '65 and '68) for $999, but all are across country so would require shipping. The only ones in my province (so no shipping charges within the province) are $1199.

    There is a Princeton available that has a 12" speaker (the tweed covered one), but it is $1195. The cheapest Vibrolux (just to explore another option) available is $1399.



    It sounds fine. I like it better at low volume than I did my AC15 at the same volume.

    I haven't turned it up in a while though because lately I have been playing while sitting on the couch with the TV on, so I have been listening to both the amp and the TV at the same time. The only times I've turned the TV down to listen to just the amp were when watching the hockey game because I don't need to hear the commentary.
     
  13. jakjar123

    jakjar123 Electromatic

    25
    Feb 14, 2021
    UK
    If tubes are a must then you probably won't like this suggestion. But the Tone Master is a good option. It's what I went for cause of student housing. I can turn the attenuator down to half a watt and have the volume on 4/5 and noone is going to complain. Do beware though, if you are someone who loves cranking amps and really pushing the tubes then no, the TM isn't as good but as long as you don't put the volume at 8 or more then it does pretty well. If you can check one out in a store, I got mine this week and so far I'm happy with it. It comes in both Deluxe Reverb and Twin as well. Only real difference is the response. Some tonal differences, but you can just EQ those out and it will still sound like the original thing and noone will know.
     
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  14. colchar

    colchar Electromatic

    40
    Oct 5, 2020
    Southern Ontario

    I've read a lot of good stuff about those. The problem is that A) we're still in lockdown so I cannot go check one out; and B) they are too new to be on the used market and I would have to buy new, which makes them more expensive than the tube versions (buying used).
     
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  15. Highroller

    Highroller Synchromatic

    966
    Jun 11, 2015
    Portland, OR
    I'm no expert, but both the '65 and '68 DRRI's are 1x12's last time I checked. I know mine is. If that's an issue, maybe rule those out.

    That's interesting, because I've played thru AC15's many, many times, but never at super low volume. It's never even occurred to me to try it that way!

    I guess my point is that all the amps you're looking at are stage amps, designed for use in a band setting, where optimal performance is louder than for home use. I know there's guys out there with 100w Marshall stacks that never leave the basement, but my approach has always been "use the smallest thing you can get away with". To each their own, there's no wrong answer here. Good luck with the search.
     
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  16. jakjar123

    jakjar123 Electromatic

    25
    Feb 14, 2021
    UK
    Ah right fair enough, it's hard to know how each country is doing lol. I checked guitar centre and they sell them for $899.99. Keep in mind you get the attenuator feature, line out with cab sim for recording and a pedal for the reverb and trem. Idk how it works where you live but I would assume that the stuff bought from a big store would come with a warranty. So if it breaks in a month you can get it replaced. If they have free returns perhaps you could order it, try it out and return it if you don't like it. That's what I did. Bought that and the JC-22 and kept the Fender, sent the JC back. Also if you move your amps around the TM weighs nothing especially when you compare it to the actual Twin lol. It's always tough buying something if you never tried it before though so I get it.
     
    colchar likes this.
  17. stiv

    stiv Country Gent

    Sep 12, 2014
    Florence, Italy
    +1 for the Pro Reverb.
    If you plan to A+B them and you suppose to play your AC30 at the right volume, I believe it will eat the Deluxe (Vox would end up too clean when the Deluxe is right, or the Deluxe would end up too dirty when the Vox is right)...on the other side, the four speakers of a Super Reverb or a Bassman at the right volume will eat the Vox two speakers. An obvious choice would be a Twin, but the Pro it’s a bit less powerful so you may be able to use the preamp volume better.
     
  18. colchar

    colchar Electromatic

    40
    Oct 5, 2020
    Southern Ontario
    I far prefer 2x12s, but can accept 1x12s. I cannot go to a smaller speaker unless it is a multi-speaker amp.



    Optimal performance in my Cherokee is beyond the speed limit, and it still has horses to spare at that speed, but that doesn't mean it isn't a really nice drive at normal highway speeds. Sorry, but I saw something along those lines in another thread on this topic on another forum and thought it was a great way of looking at the "you won't use the amp to its full potential or be running it in its sweet spot" position.

    And one thing that I was forgetting during this whole conversation was that if I ever decide I want to get the tubes cooking a little bit, I can just pull two tubes from the Twin to knock it down to about 45-50 watts.
     
  19. colchar

    colchar Electromatic

    40
    Oct 5, 2020
    Southern Ontario

    As I just mentioned above, one thing that I was forgetting during this whole conversation was that if I ever decide I want to get the tubes cooking a little bit, I can just pull two tubes from the Twin to knock it down to about 45-50 watts (so basically the same as the Pro Reverb).
     
    stiv likes this.
  20. stiv

    stiv Country Gent

    Sep 12, 2014
    Florence, Italy
    That’s another good option.
    But don’t rule out the Pro. To me it’s one of the most underrated Fenders.
    You could probably give a chance also to a 2x12 Vibroverb Reissue. Same 40w, although the stock speakers are due nothing to die for.
     
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