1965 Blackface Bassman - WOW!

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by minjason, Jan 10, 2008.

  1. minjason

    minjason Member

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    Went to a local music store yesterday and played a pre-CBS 1965 blackface Fender Bassman head/cab and was absolutely floored. Over the past few years, I've had the privilege of playing through countless boutique amps, and many of them have sounded amazing.

    But this was different. It's difficult to explain, but there was something so raw and real about the sound. The cleans were crystal clear with the most chimey highs and rich lows I'd ever heard come out of an amp. When pushed, the amp did this super creamy smooth breakup that I did not expect at all! The moment I plugged in my strat and strummed one chord, I had a crowd around me commenting on the tone.

    Needless to say, I bought the amp on the spot. I guess there are certain things that just don't need to be changed...
     
  2. pfflam

    pfflam Silver Supporting Member

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    What circuit is it?

    I have a very early '65 that turned out to be an AB165, even though it was made in the second month of '65. I liked it just fine but it needed new resistors, so I went ahead and modded the whole (Normal Input) thing to AA864 specs with carbon comps and, where I could, vintage caps . . . I still need to get a bias tool to bias the tubes but I sure love the way it sounds. Great stuff!!
     
  3. Jujo

    Jujo Supporting Member

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    That happened to me once at a store with a Blonde Bassman. I didn't have the money at the time or else I woulda bought it. Good for you... in this internet age it's so refreshing to play a piece in a store and go 'holy crap' and then buy it. I'm tired of being disappointed by gear I've bought online. It's great to try and buy.
     
  4. re-animator

    re-animator Senior Member

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    what cab was it through??
     
  5. 67super

    67super Supporting Member

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    If it's 1965 it can't be pre CBS. CBS took over Fender on 1/1/65

    I have a 65 Bassman I really like. It was an AB165 circuit that now has had it's power section returned to typical BF Fender and it's Bass channel has been modded to be more like a Marshall. It's a nice amp.
     
  6. re-animator

    re-animator Senior Member

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    oops, i meant speakers. i'm assuming they were original??
     
  7. minjason

    minjason Member

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    yah...i asked the amp technician in the store about this too also because the backplate said "Fender Musical Instruments" instead of "Fender Electrical Instruments" as it should say on pre-CBS Fender amps. He showed me a sticker on the inside which indicated that, even though the amp said April, 1965 on it, this particular one was still based on the pre-CBS model...he also showed me the differences between that and post-1965 bassmans.
     
  8. SW33THAND5

    SW33THAND5 Member

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    although it may not be fashonable. a good old fashioned fender can beat just about anything in my book! :)
     
  9. devbro

    devbro Member

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    I've slowly been selling my booteek amps and have grown to really like the old Fenders. My '63 Blonde Bassman sounds heavenly and its the loudest 50 watts I've ver heard.
     
  10. Unburst

    Unburst Member

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    BF Bassman is the best bargain in the amp world.
     
  11. bob-i

    bob-i Member

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    But CBS just left things alone for some time. It was 66 when I saw the change in the Fender line, and not for the better.
     
  12. martyncrew

    martyncrew Gold Supporting Member

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    If you get chance, try it with an Emi Cannabis Rex :AOK
     
  13. Red Planet

    Red Planet Member

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    Congrats dude!

    These are very good amps and killer deals. I hope you enjoy it for many moons.


    I have shown this pic a few times but here it is again. I'll get accused of trying to Spam for Fender if I talk to often about it.:D

    This is my 67 Bassman put to good power section/phase inverter and the Bass Channel made Normal with Mid Boost. Then I put her into a JD Newel Caombo Cab. Sweet sweet Amp!


    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
    KissTone likes this.
  14. scottlr

    scottlr Member

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    I have a 64 Blonde Bassman, and I have to say it IS a killer amp. I restored the Tolex and grill cloth on it, as it was REALLY shabby when I got it. I used Webers (I don't recall which, whatever Ted said was the proper speaker for this amp), and it really kicks ass! I recently acquired another BF Bassman cab that has 70s Vegas in it (ER-123s? Whatever the Vegas Duane used) and the two cabs stacked looks extremely cool. I need to make another speaker cable, since the Bassman is the only amp I have with a separate cab. I can't wait to hear it with both cabs! In the past I have ran it along side of my 67 Super Reverb in tandem, and that was another WOW moment.
     
  15. 67super

    67super Supporting Member

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    Absolutly, my favorite all time amp (obviuosly by my TGP name) is a 67 Super Reverb. It has the CTS alnicos and the exact circuit as pre CBS. IMO most any Fender before 69 is potentialy a great amp. Well into the 70's there are some fine amps.
     
  16. soldano16

    soldano16 Member

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    It's fun to see folks who after playing for years finally do the Bassman thing. Congrats and enjoy! It's an essential part of rock and roll. Sometimes you wonder if it isn't the most popular Fender guitar amp of all time ( not bad for a bass amp)
     
  17. louderock

    louderock Member

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    I have a 65 AA165. I converted it into a 1-12 combo with a JD Newell cabinet. Celestion Gold. It always turns heads and is the ultimate grab n go amp. Great with pedals. Probably the best all around amp I own and I own a bunch.
     
  18. blackba

    blackba Supporting Member

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    I had a similar experience at my bandmate's house. I used his '67 bassman for a few practices and was blown away. He needed money at one point so I was able to purchase his '67 Bassman. His blackface '67 Deluxe reverb sounds killer too, much better than my DRRI did.

    I am modding my bassman to the AB165/AA864 joint circuit mods, I figure it can only get better....
     
  19. scott1568

    scott1568 Member

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    I have to jump in here-I got a new camera for Christmas.

    I had this head in my closet for about six years-needed an overhaul. Last year I took it out and plugged into my Hot Rod Deluxe Speaker. The Hot Rod Deluxe quickly got sold....

    The Gretsch (in the middle position) through the Bass Channel in indescribable. The first time I played the opening riff to "Day Tripper" in the bridge position, I just about pee'd my pants.

    [​IMG]
     
  20. blackba

    blackba Supporting Member

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    Is your bass Instr. Channel stock, if so what is your secret. I find the Bass Instrument channel on mine to be kind of muffled, muddy and undefined, than again I have not started tweaking it.

    Great looking rig, BTW. After seeing your sweet looking Gretsch, I will have to get out my Gretsch Brian setzer hot rod this weekend;)
     

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