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Looking for an amp...

PostPosted: Thu Jan 06, 2011 2:26 pm
by Cincinnati Slim
I am torn between new vintage sweetness and modern technological convenience. Anyone have experience with any of the following:

1. Fender Vintage Series 59 Bassman Limited Edition
2. Fender 65 Super Reverb Reissue
3. Fender Super Champ XD

I like the 1st two for obvious reasons, but I want to get some info first hand, if possible. I like the Super Champ because is has tubes, a line out, built in delay, and you can use two stacked, one set dark and one bright; modularity. I had a rig like that in the early 90's, but I can't remember the model of the amp (Fender). It had the same configuration.

Anyway, any help would be appreciated. Thanks!

Re: Looking for an amp...

PostPosted: Thu Jan 06, 2011 6:54 pm
by jeffl
I've only played through the Super Champ. I know there's plenty of guys who've played through small enclosure amps (I've had several, including a Silverface Champ), but I'm not a fan of them. I don't think you get enough bottom end response outa those small enclosures. The only thing I like alot about the XD is its portability.

On the other hand, I've played through a Epiphone 5-watt Valve Special and its cabinet is slightly larger than my 30-watt Peavey Classic 30, and it kicks ass all the way around. Epi has discontinued that amp, but its higher powered (15 watt) brother, the Valve Standard is still available.

This line of Epi amps trumps the main drawback of the little Valve Jr.s and that is the small cabinet size. The Valve Standard is surprisingly heavy (especially considering its apparently cheap construction), and it has delay and reverb, depending on which circuit you use.

If you have a bigbox music store close, I'd recommend doing what I did: play an XD, the Epi 15-watt, and then the new Princeton, and maybe a Victoria, a new 5f1, or whatever boutique amps they've got there. I'd ask the store for a room where you can push the amps, so you can drive them at gigging levels. I never test a harp amp out on the show floor..I'd get kicked outa there.
Depending on your personal taste, I'm still betting that you'll see the value in the Epiphone-- despite its Chinese cheap "wanna be retro" look, which can be construed as pretty cool, or disgusting.

Re: Looking for an amp...

PostPosted: Fri Jan 07, 2011 5:40 am
by bottleneck
i have a few too many amps,if there is such a thing.but if i were in the market i'd buy a tweed deluxe off sligo.i think they're the best deal around.i do not own one and i have nothing to do with the company,but if i didn't already have nine or so amps i would buy one from sligo.

Re: Looking for an amp...

PostPosted: Fri Jan 07, 2011 6:16 am
by gheumann
The Bassman LE is a damn good amp for the money. At a minimum you will want to retube the preamp section. Changing out a few of the speakers for something other than what's already there will smooth out the sound.

Re: Looking for an amp...

PostPosted: Fri Jan 07, 2011 5:03 pm
by Cincinnati Slim
Greg, if I buy a Bassman I will replace the 12AX's with 12AU's, but I really want to avoid looking for speakers. Hell, I'm not sure I can find 12AU's here in France. BTW, can you bridge a new Bassman w/out blowing it up?

Re: Looking for an amp...

PostPosted: Sat Jan 08, 2011 12:07 am
by bottleneck
i prefer 12ax7's in most preamp positions in most amps.i find 12au7,12 at7 etc. to be great in the flat but not on stage.i think this is one of the few things BB bob and i agree on,haha.

unfortunately i havE TONS of NOS Tubes,with lots of 12au7's.argh.

if you can find an EARLY RI it just might sound better(with stock speakers)than a new LTD or victoria.

Re: Looking for an amp...

PostPosted: Sat Jan 08, 2011 11:19 am
by Cincinnati Slim
Update: I just tried the Super Champ... no go. A feedback machine. On the other hand I was able to play through a 65 Princeton Reverb re-issue and it was sweet... expensive, but sweet. Thing is, for 400 euros more I could get either a re-issue Super Reverb or a re-issue Bassman and a reverb pedal. Decisions, decisions...

Re: Looking for an amp...

PostPosted: Sat Jan 08, 2011 3:03 pm
by jbone1
i have a sligo built bassman and love it! Steve Clark, the owner there, took my order and put some very harp friendly speakers in it when he built it. i run 12a's as follows: p1, 12ax7, p2, 12au7, p3, 12au7. i also put a jumper cable between input 2 and 3, and plug my mic into 4. great breakup and overdrive that way.
i've had this amp for going on 3 years now and never had a problem with it. feedback is very very minimal. the '59 circuit and components are very harp friendly!

Re: Looking for an amp...

PostPosted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 12:43 pm
by Cincinnati Slim
Jbone that is very good info, thanks. I was wondering about bridging a new Bassman and if it would cause any problems. I am stuck between the Bassman re issue and the Princeton reverb re issue. I can't order a customized amp from the states; too costly to ship and pay the import tax.

If anybody else has experience with either of these two amps, I would love to hear from you.

Re: Looking for an amp...

PostPosted: Tue Jan 18, 2011 10:15 am
by Cincinnati Slim
As usual I have bought something I had no idea I would buy; a reissue Blues Deville. It is more power than I need, but it was a lot less money than the Bassman. I am already getting pretty good tone from it before doing any modifications. Here is a pic of my settings: ... 4064667474

1) Does anyone have any experience/tips with this amp that you would care to share? Settings, etc.?
2) I am going to re-tube the pre-amp section with 12AU7's in the 2nd and 3rd positions, right to left, but I was wondering about mixing speakers. It has 4x 10" Eminence speakers with blue AlNiCo magnets (30 watts/8 Ohm), and I have bought 2 Jensen JCH 1035-8 Chicago 10" speakers (35 watts, 8 Ohm). Should I use both? Just 1? What position(s) Does it matter? (Let's call the positions 1 2 3 4 left to right, top to bottom).

What say you, my harmonica bretheren?

Re: Looking for an amp...

PostPosted: Tue Jan 18, 2011 11:10 pm
by bottleneck
great snag!! i used to have a blues deville that i traded for my bassman. that amp could make a harp sound like four trombones.way loud,but lots of fun.

it is interesting that i find the devilles to be MUCH better amps than hot rods.fender really dropped the ball when they added "more drive."

if it were me ,i'd carefully preserve two of the stock speakers for resale time and put the two speakers you bought in the bottom two spots first and see how it sounds.

they are really nice amps with plenty of power,i'm sure you will be very happy with it.if i came across one for the right price i would buy another.

Re: Looking for an amp...

PostPosted: Wed Jun 12, 2013 6:30 pm
by Honeyboy
I have had many amps and currently have a Fender Pro Reverb, Deluxe VM, and a Deluxe Reverb reissue. My favorite amp is my Super Champ XD. It's so versitile. I can make it sound like anything. Add a 12" external cab it gets even better. Run a line out into my Duluxe VM and I can get so loud I can play Carnegie Hall.

Check out videos on my band website below.