20th anniversary Shiva heads

RSRD

Member
Messages
4,970
I also prefer the 20th Shiva to the 20th XTC. But prefer the 100B XTC of them all.
I heard (note: ive never played a classic) that the 100Bs clean still doesnt match the Shivas. The 101s definitely leaves alot to be desired.
 

suparsonic

Member
Messages
2,809
I heard (note: ive never played a classic) that the 100Bs clean still doesnt match the Shivas. The 101s definitely leaves alot to be desired.
The Shiva has the best clean, the ultimate amp for me would be a 100B with the Shiva clean channel or a 20th Shiva with the 100B red ch added. I do like the gain channels on the 100B more though, the 20th Shiva OD ch is similar to the 100B Blue ch FWIW.
 

papersoul

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
13,358
I just will never ever have a need for a three channel head....and we do lots of originals and lots of covers. Overkill. :)

Tele......I use JJs in all my heads so I know I will have JJ preamp tubes throughout. Bogner also told me the EL34s will thicken the mids and smooth the highs.

I played a 100B XTC and a 101B and can't stand the third channel. Just me maybe. :)
 

Smokin

Active Member
Messages
82
NOT if you get it with EL34s. The EL34 20th is better than the KT88 version to my ears. Recently I was able to try both. Little thicker in the mids, smoother, not dry...and I think it is still better than the XTC. I still do not like the red channel on those amps, even the 20th, sorry. :(
To my ear, KT-88s = edgy highs, dry sounding, too glassy. Lacks the things I like...harmonically rich mids and smooth highs.

A friend had a new Bogner Twin Jet. did not like it. Replaced the KT88s and had it converted to EL34s. Like a whole new amp. Fixes those issues you mentioned. :)
Did you try a 20th XTC with 34's?....I used to own a 100b and 101b and the 20th is the closest thing to perfection I've heard...The red channel is actually my favorite. They finally nailed the sound I've had in my head...it just sounds huge in a band mix and leads saturate and drip with this harmonic richness.

I hear you on the KT88's...I absolutely can't stand them. I guess we're both going against the grain...I feel 34's just fit Reinhold's designs.
 

MightyGuru

Member
Messages
6,981
I too had a chance to a/b the 20th XTC and Shiva in the same room. I liked both amps a lot but settled on the SHiva for a few reasons. Unlike some of the dudes on this thread I do not find the issue woth the KT88s as listed. Bogner really tweaked this preamp around the KT88s to make them sound awesome. I did swap out the V1 and PI tubes for JJ ECC83s to darken up the amp a bit and it smoothed the high end. Anyhoo back to the A/B and the reasons why the Shiva was the choice.
1) Shiva is more alive and less compressed.
2) Shiva clean was better IMO
3) Size of head. I dig the smaller lighter box.
4) Shiva was ruder and more Marshall like but in a Bogner way and the SHiva is more perciussive for rythm
5) Shiva sounded Bigger while the XTC sounded wider if that makes any sense haha.
6) Price, Shiva is lighter on the wallet.

I have not swapped the power tubes for EL34s nor have I ever heard a 20th Shiva with EL34s but I did confirm all that is needed to do this is a rebias. No modding or anything. That is straight from Charlie at Bogner. So if you get one with KT88s and dont dig then tube swap time (just make sure you bias it or have it bias'd).
Any idea what the bias should be set at for EL34s in the 20th ann'y Shiva?
 

RSRD

Member
Messages
4,970
1) Shiva is more alive and less compressed.
2) Shiva clean was better IMO
3) Size of head. I dig the smaller lighter box.
4) Shiva was ruder and more Marshall like but in a Bogner way and the SHiva is more perciussive for rythm
5) Shiva sounded Bigger while the XTC sounded wider if that makes any sense haha.
6) Price, Shiva is lighter on the wallet.

I have not swapped the power tubes for EL34s nor have I ever heard a 20th Shiva with EL34s but I did confirm all that is needed to do this is a rebias. No modding or anything. That is straight from Charlie at Bogner. So if you get one with KT88s and dont dig then tube swap time (just make sure you bias it or have it bias'd).
I concur with your 6 step analysis. spot on.
 

guitarvc

Member
Messages
1,538
Its a matter of taste. The overdrive has more gain on tap and is more "in your face". the cleans are harsh to my ears, as I love the 6L6 Shiva the most. They are all great amps, and I prefer the Anniversary XTC to any of the other XTC's
 

Telefied

Member
Messages
95
Any idea what the bias should be set at for EL34s in the 20th ann'y Shiva?
Yep Charlie said bias the EL34s at 29ma with the amp HOT. He also recommended Winged C EL34s for there stability at high plate voltages. Another forum user relayed another fact from Charlie at Bogner (so this next part is second hand I have not confirmed myself). The reason the bias is set so cold (29ma) is the 20th Shiva will drift up to hot bias as the amp is cranked and you have to go cold to get this to work.

I am pretty certain this has to do with the master volume and "power dampning" excusion control. BOth of these effect the voltage to the plates and can cause the bias to flux.

So cool that the bias control can take KT88 and EL34s with no modifications!

I am telling you guys blind taste test and you would never guess this thing has KT88s in it. I have never heard a KT88 or 6550 amp I liked. Even when I had the MOD50 and dudes swore that the 6550 by TUngSol would rule I hated them. I love this 20th SHiva stock and it is even better with JJ ECC83s in the V1 and PI. Now I have not tried EL34s in it yet nor heard one with so that may be even better but I am in no rush to try for now.
 

papersoul

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
13,358
So Tele...if that is the case, I would think you would bias it to 29ms while the amp is cold? I mean if it is going to drift up higher.....
 

Alex_S

Member
Messages
304
Yep Charlie said bias the EL34s at 29ma with the amp HOT. He also recommended Winged C EL34s for there stability at high plate voltages. Another forum user relayed another fact from Charlie at Bogner (so this next part is second hand I have not confirmed myself). The reason the bias is set so cold (29ma) is the 20th Shiva will drift up to hot bias as the amp is cranked and you have to go cold to get this to work.

I am pretty certain this has to do with the master volume and "power dampning" excusion control. BOth of these effect the voltage to the plates and can cause the bias to flux.

So cool that the bias control can take KT88 and EL34s with no modifications!

I am telling you guys blind taste test and you would never guess this thing has KT88s in it. I have never heard a KT88 or 6550 amp I liked. Even when I had the MOD50 and dudes swore that the 6550 by TUngSol would rule I hated them. I love this 20th SHiva stock and it is even better with JJ ECC83s in the V1 and PI. Now I have not tried EL34s in it yet nor heard one with so that may be even better but I am in no rush to try for now.
Wow, I never heard that (that you can run EL34s in the KT88 Shiva). Has anyone tried that? How do they sound differently? And, I heard you can special order a EL34 20th Shiva, what do they do differently in that one then? Is it just the bias or do really two different versions exist?

Ciao Alex
 

Mesanixta

Member
Messages
666
Wow, I never heard that (that you can run EL34s in the KT88 Shiva). Has anyone tried that? How do they sound differently? And, I heard you can special order a EL34 20th Shiva, what do they do differently in that one then? Is it just the bias or do really two different versions exist?

Ciao Alex
this is a great question. Im still waiting for my custom (vinyl) 20th shiva. it would be awesome if i could run el34's in it especially after i agonized over this and the EL34 shiva.
 

papersoul

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
13,358
Wow, I never heard that (that you can run EL34s in the KT88 Shiva). Has anyone tried that? How do they sound differently? And, I heard you can special order a EL34 20th Shiva, what do they do differently in that one then? Is it just the bias or do really two different versions exist?

Ciao Alex
My 20th Ann Shiva is on order with EL-34s.
 

MightyGuru

Member
Messages
6,981
Thanks Telefied.

Man, I guess two 20th ann'y Shiva owners gotta get together and a/b the EL34 from Bogner and a re-biased KT88 to EL34 shiva.

I'm going to get a voltmeter, multimeter whatever it's called.
 

se7en

Senior Member
Messages
366
NOT if you get it with EL34s. The EL34 20th is better than the KT88 version to my ears. Recently I was able to try both. Little thicker in the mids, smoother, not dry...and I think it is still better than the XTC. I still do not like the red channel on those amps, even the 20th, sorry. :(
To my ear, KT-88s = edgy highs, dry sounding, too glassy. Lacks the things I like...harmonically rich mids and smooth highs.

A friend had a new Bogner Twin Jet. did not like it. Replaced the KT88s and had it converted to EL34s. Like a whole new amp. Fixes those issues you mentioned. :)
Yeah the Twin Jet sounds killer with EL34's...KT88's were more open, dryer, more hi-fi, more flat in the midrange, deeper in the bass, but not as focused and the highs were glassy. I have a 20th XTC and that's my #1...a desert island amp...the 20th Shiva isn't as wide in the midrange or as bold in the power section, but has a more focused Q. The leads aren't quite as thick as the XTC and the feel is about 85% of the way there. I found that the clean channels could be dialed in to where they sounded just about identical...my friend agreed..with the Shiva doing more of the glassy, dry jazz thing better and the XTC doing better slight breakup cleans. The Shiva sounds more open at lower volumes, but once you crank the XTC it opens up wonderfully. I bet a 20th Shiva with 34's would respond in a similar fashion. Stellar amps for sure.
 

Telefied

Member
Messages
95
So Tele...if that is the case, I would think you would bias it to 29ms while the amp is cold? I mean if it is going to drift up higher.....
Yeah not sure. RockStarNick (rig talk username I am sure he is on here too) heard the same thing from Charlie @ BOgner. Not sure the deal but I dont build them just play them haha.

Here is a quote from Charlie's email response to me

From: "info" <info@bogneramplification.com>
Date: Fri, Jun 25, 2010 11:17 am
Subject: 20th Shiva mod to EL34

Al; you need to do is change the bias. Any tech should be able to do that.
Set the bias to 29 ma. for EL34 with the amp hot.
Thanks,
Charley Polacheck
Bogner Amplification
11411 Vanowen Street
North Hollywood, Ca. 91605
818-765-8929
 

Telefied

Member
Messages
95
Thanks Telefied.

Man, I guess two 20th ann'y Shiva owners gotta get together and a/b the EL34 from Bogner and a re-biased KT88 to EL34 shiva.

I'm going to get a voltmeter, multimeter whatever it's called.
Yeah I agree. Anyone with a 20th Shiva in Nashville want to do this? I am down for it!
 

Telefied

Member
Messages
95
I decided to reach back out to Charlie at Bogner myself and ask about the cold bias. His response was you can bias them hotter than 29 but the tubes may fail.

No mention of the drift issue etc. I am done bugging him now though haha. I am guessing 32-34ma is safe but the need to be reliable tubes like the winged C EL34 to handle the high plate volts.
 

RockStarNick

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
3,631
I've asked Charley Polachek (at Bogner) a bunch of times. (I've annoyed the crap out of that guy too, Tele... hahaha)

FACT: The "EL34 20th Shiva" is nothing more than a standard 20th Shiva with EL34s, instead of KT88s. No other parts are changed.

FACT: The bias on a Shiva will drift upwards as the amp is cranked. So bias the tubes on the cold side when the amp is at idle. If you bias EL34s at the "industry standard reccomended bias range" while the Shiva is idle, you may very well blow some tubes as you crank that amp. Charley said it's just a uniquely designed amp, that's why it does this.

I agree that if I never looked in the back of the amp, I'd NEVER guess that it was a KT88 amp. I used to fear KT88s for all the reasons that you hear: cold, lifeless, sterile, etc, etc. I dunno man... this amp completely changed my mind on them. I think that the KT88's in the Shiva are a great match. It's a touch less vintage, but makes up for it with big boldness and a wide, fat crunch. Take the EL34 Standard Shiva, and expand the treble higher, and the bass deeper. That's what the KT88 20th sounds like.

Likewise, the Standard EL34 Shiva has more of a focused, slightly more buttery lead sound. Definitely smoother highs. But we're not talking night and day here. The preamp design is doing a LOT of the work in both these amps.
 

Telefied

Member
Messages
95
Thanks for alley ooping this nick. You more detailed feedback from Charlie really helps fill in the "why" behind the answers I got and may help some of the dudes on the board here understand it.

I keeping thinking "I need to try the swap" but then I fire up the amp and play and go "nahhh leave the KT88s in there this sounds bad ass!!!"

haha
 




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