• The Gear Page Apparel & Merch Shop is Open!

    Based on member demand, The Gear Page is pleased to announce that our Apparel Merch Shop is now open. The shop’s link is in the blue Navigation bar (on the right side), “Shop,” with t-shirts, hats, neck buffs, and stickers to start. Here’s the direct link: www.thegearpageshop.com

    You’ll find exclusive high-quality apparel and merchandise; all items are ethical, sustainably produced, and we will be continuously sourcing and adding new choices. 

    We can ship internationally. All shipping is at cost.


Any other Vox AC15 lovers here? And a question about clean headroom.

lawl Dave

Member
Messages
50
I've had a Vox AC15 for about 8 months now, and I absolutely love it. The cleans are totally delicious (that's the only way I can describe them), the tremolo is fantastic, and the overdrive is pretty raunchy as well.

My only complaint is that it breaks up pretty quickly, even with the top boost volume low and the master volume high. Would different tubes help, or should I just deal with it w/ my guitar's volume?
 

amp-head

Member
Messages
50
Low headroom is simply a characteristic of the amp's design - similar the MANY dual EL84 amps on the market. Changing to another brand of EL84 won't do much of anything regarding clean headroom - the amp's circuit design is responsible for the early onset of overdrive.

You should able to control the overdrive by rolling off your guitar's volume. That will of course reduce your volume, but you should be able to move in and out of the overdrive zone simply by turning your guitar down.
 

alguit

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
2,838
Hey, congrats on owning a terrific amp! I've had one of the British ones for about 12 years and love it. There's definitely not much in terms of headroom, and was noted above, it's not meant for that.

In particular, rolling back volume on single-coil guitars will clean it up well, and if you're recording, then you can get quite pristine cleans out of it.

Enjoy!
 

alguit

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
2,838
Hi,

It will partially depend on how cranked the amp is-with the power tubes sweatin' a little, I haven't had a bad experience with any of my pedals, including the OCD, Eternity, BSM RPA, Box of Rock, Jacques Fuse Blower II...

With the amp set cleaner, I like the Blackstone and OCD and Eternity, but the others don't have the same "guts."

All in all, though, Vox AC 15's and 30's like most pedals.
 

lawl Dave

Member
Messages
50
Hi,

It will partially depend on how cranked the amp is-with the power tubes sweatin' a little, I haven't had a bad experience with any of my pedals, including the OCD, Eternity, BSM RPA, Box of Rock, Jacques Fuse Blower II...

With the amp set cleaner, I like the Blackstone and OCD and Eternity, but the others don't have the same "guts."

All in all, though, Vox AC 15's and 30's like most pedals.
My AC15 takes the overdrive side of my Boss OS-2 great, but isn't so keen on the distortion side (I guess it's just the brittle Boss distortion, though). Anyone run a Big Muff through a Vox? I'm looking at getting one and I want to know what I'm getting myself into.
 

lawl Dave

Member
Messages
50
We're talking about the Custom Classic, right? The early breakup can be remedied somewhat with a tube change. That's the first thing I noticed when I changed mine and I actually hated it! LOL! It wasn't what I was going for at all, but that's exactly what happened. I bought a pair of Tung Sol RI 12AX7's and a matched pair of JJ EL84's.
Sorry, I'm kinda a noob with tube amps. How much would this run me in terms of money? Is it a simple swap kinda thing that I could do on my own with relatively little work?
 

lawl Dave

Member
Messages
50
Probably less than $50 depending on where you get them from. I basically had zero experience changing tubes myself when I did it, but I decided to dive right in and try it. Turns out, it wasn't very hard. The hardest part is getting the chassis out, but I believe there's only 4 screws holding it in place...two on each side. There's also a cage around couple of the tubes that you should probably take off as well...that's only two screws, I believe.

This is a fixed bias amp, so no need to rebias it or anything. Just carefully remove the old ones and put the new ones in. Even still, I would search around and read up on exactly how it's done just so that you know what you're dealing with ahead of time.

I can't guarantee that it will do for you what it did for me, but it's at least worth a shot to see how it turns out. It never hurts to have a spare set of tubes lying around anyway.
Thanks a ton man. It's not a super urgent thing for me to try to change the tubes (it's not killing me with the breakup, just the extra headroom would be cool), but I'm definitely gonna take a crack at that when I get the time. I've heard the input jack can be flakey, and mine's only flaked out on me once. Have you had yours replaced with a metal one? I might try to get it done under warranty.
 

Rusty G.

Member
Messages
3,143
I've got a 1997 Vox AC-15 with a pair of 10 inch speakers that sounds fantastic. It stays clean longer using single coil guitars. Also, it sounds great for recording, but probably wouldn't stay clean well with a loud band. While this amp can sound good with humbucker pickups, my experience has been that it sounds better with Teles, Strats, and especially a Rickenbacker 360. I've also seen that thicker strings help the amp stay cleaner longer than thinner strings. Gives up a real vintage vibe with a Ric 360 strung with 11's.

For Overdrive, I use a Maxon 808 and Keeley Compressor.
 

soundchaser59

Thank You Great Spirit!
Gold Supporting Member
Messages
12,786
Yeah, if you want to push it to the edge of clean, use a compressor......


and turn the tone and gain down and turn the master up, go from there. In other words, use full power amp power, with very little preamp power....works with many different amps, though I've not tried it on an AC15.
 

bulbasaur_85

Member
Messages
2,209
Yeah, if you want to push it to the edge of clean, use a compressor......


and turn the tone and gain down and turn the master up, go from there. In other words, use full power amp power, with very little preamp power....works with many different amps, though I've not tried it on an AC15.
With this approach, the cleans just don't sound as big and warm as when I have the preamp volume up a bit and the master volume to taste. With the master volume dimed, my overdrives don't sound as good. What am I missing here?
 

jamoed

Member
Messages
247
i have a Vox AC15CC and bought this past week a Celestion Alnico Blue speaker and new JJ tubes from eurotubes https://ssl.eurotubes.com/cart/index.php?page=view_submenu&category_id=130. email them and talk with eddie to see what you want. i have the standard tubes on the way for the most clean headroom.

there are some mods you can do as well http://www.guitarpug.com/2008/06/vox-ac15cc-mod-guide/ but i am gonna have a buddy who is an electrician do. prob do the bright cab mod.

all and all, new tubes and a new speaker will make this map kick ass. looking forward to installing all this and will let u know!!!
 

lawl Dave

Member
Messages
50
i have a Vox AC15CC and bought this past week a Celestion Alnico Blue speaker and new JJ tubes from eurotubes https://ssl.eurotubes.com/cart/index.php?page=view_submenu&category_id=130. email them and talk with eddie to see what you want. i have the standard tubes on the way for the most clean headroom.

there are some mods you can do as well http://www.guitarpug.com/2008/06/vox-ac15cc-mod-guide/ but i am gonna have a buddy who is an electrician do. prob do the bright cab mod.

all and all, new tubes and a new speaker will make this map kick ass. looking forward to installing all this and will let u know!!!
What do you think of the Alnico blue speaker? I never got a chance to play an AC15 with one, but I've only heard great things about them. I love the stock Wharfdale as is, and I'm afraid that an Alnico blue would be kinda "fragile" and blow out if I replaced my current one.

I really appreciate the input everyone! This forum is just a fountain of knowledge, eh?
 




Trending Topics

Top