Any point in getting a Princeton (or clone)?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by daacrusher2001, May 22, 2020.

  1. daacrusher2001

    daacrusher2001 Silver Supporting Member

    Messages:
    5,643
    Joined:
    May 25, 2008
    Location:
    NJ
    If I already have a Deluxe Reverb (Allen Accomplice)...just curious what you guys think...

    I played one the other day when trying out a guitar and it sounded pretty good. Just not sure it's much different than what I already have.

    Some of you guys must have both? What would say makes them different?
     
  2. adamdaniel

    adamdaniel Supporting Member

    Messages:
    455
    Joined:
    May 9, 2011
    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    The Princeton circuit is a bit less scooped then a Deluxe, and the 10” speaker has a different sound, more compressed and focused. That said, for me, the reason to have both is because in lower volume situations, a smaller, lighter, less powerful amp often just makes more sense.
     
  3. rhinocaster

    rhinocaster Supporting Member

    Messages:
    22,925
    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2004
    It would actually be a really cool option in that power range if you went brown face as it brings some of that Marshall thing to the mix.
     
  4. DJ_61

    DJ_61 Member

    Messages:
    1,163
    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2009
    Yes! They sound really different. Different feel too. Princeton is fuller and warmer and does not need much volume to do its magic. Tremolo is wonderful as well.
     
    Muttlyboy likes this.
  5. KONTAKTMOI

    KONTAKTMOI Supporting Member

    Messages:
    285
    Joined:
    May 18, 2019
    Location:
    In the cloud
  6. Darkness

    Darkness Member

    Messages:
    2,126
    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2010
    Location:
    Stygian Gulf
    Brownface Princeton is superb.
     
    ljs and zenas like this.
  7. daacrusher2001

    daacrusher2001 Silver Supporting Member

    Messages:
    5,643
    Joined:
    May 25, 2008
    Location:
    NJ
    I hadn't thought about the Brownface...was thinking Princeton Reverb. I don't think I've ever tried a Brownface.
     
  8. tochiro

    tochiro Member

    Messages:
    2,434
    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2009
    Location:
    Europe
    The PRRI or the Tone Master Deluxe?
     
  9. zenas

    zenas Member

    Messages:
    7,925
    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2011
    Already had BFDR when I stumbled into a blackface Princeton Reverb, without a logo. (for those that missed that part in vintage amp class, early in blackface production the cheap amps didn't get logos) Didn't figure I needed the thing since I already had the Fender 6v6 thing covered, but only a damned fool walks away from a '64 BFPR for $900 the last several years.
    To be honest my original intent was flipping it, that didn't happen. For what I do it's just a better sounding amp and more useful amp than the BFDR.
    If I could only have two Fender Reverb amps it'd be a Princeton and a Twin.
     
    Muttlyboy likes this.
  10. stevieboy

    stevieboy Clouds yell at me Silver Supporting Member

    Messages:
    37,047
    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2006
    Location:
    Under the whang whang guitar star
    Important for this discussion to note that OP's "Deluxe Reverb" is really an Allen Accomplice.

    For one thing, that creates the opportunity to keep 6L6s in the Accomplice and have a 35 watt amp to go with the 15 watt PR. If want a bigger amp both size and power and also the smaller PR for grab and go or the like, might work out for you. And no tremolo on the Accomplice, that might be a consideration.

    On the other hand, the master volume on the Accomplice works really well and the Accomplice works quite well at all volume levels, IMO. While they might not sound exactly alike, from that point of view the PR might not really add that much.

    My own experience--I've had an Accomplice for 16 years, love it. At one point fairly recently I got one of the PR special editions that are floating around, mine was a 68 Custom version with an Alnico Blue 12" so not quite a BF type PR. I liked it, but decided to move it out it and get a Chris Stapleton model Princeton, which is a brownface with a 12. I'm enjoying that one a lot more. It's useful to me to have both, but I guess if I sat down and dialed in the Accomplice, between the master, the three tone controls, and especially the RAW control, I just might be able to get it sounding really close to the Princeton.
     
  11. daacrusher2001

    daacrusher2001 Silver Supporting Member

    Messages:
    5,643
    Joined:
    May 25, 2008
    Location:
    NJ
    The ability to use 6L6s definitely adds to the flexibility of the Accomplice. Probability of zero that I'll ever sell the Allen. I agree, the master works well and I can get a lot of sounds out of it.

    Maybe a brownface is a better option. The Chris Stapleton version looks interesting. Little Dawg also makes a brownface.

    I just want something a bit different. I should add that I already have a Mesa Fillmore. Also a 6v6 amp but it's different than the Accomplice....maybe I just need an AC15 LOL
     
    pete12string likes this.
  12. HughesP

    HughesP Member

    Messages:
    1,195
    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2006
    Location:
    Canada
    Princeton reverbs are different that deluxe reverbs, for sure, but also very much the same family...

    That said, there's a lot of application differences.

    In general, princeton's are warmer and a bit more mid focused, while a deluxe has a much wider sound. A deluxe feels and sounds a bit more like a mini twin, where as a princeton sits somewhere between a BF deluxe and a tweed/brownface deluxe.

    Now a few situational experiences:

    I've been doing some home recordings for my church's services recently with my wife - we don't have a complicated recording setup, so we record with just one mic in the room. I find with my princeton, playing at a volume where my leads sit nicely in the room against an unplugged strummed martin dreadnaught (which is a pretty loud acoustic, mind you), that the princeton is already turned up enough to start sounding nice and warm (not breaking up yet, of course...), where as a deluxe is still colder/harsher sounding.

    Because of the bright cap in a deluxe (which you can just snip out if you want a warmer sound at low volumes), the deluxe also sounds a bit fizzy if you use drive pedals at low volumes, where as the princeton doesn't do that. So for situations where a deluxe is just too much, a princeton can still often deliver the goods.

    However, at higher volumes, a stock princeton has a much nastier breakup because of the phase inverter design, and if you want your pedals to drive the amp into overdrive I would take a deluxe over a stock princeton. The princeton's phase inverter is a bit more primitive/ a tweed era "left over", where as the deluxe's LTP makes it much more like a "modern" amp. Mind you, there is a single resistor mod that can smooth out the princeton's breakup - which is what I have done to mine - but stock vs stock, the deluxe breaks up more nicely. I'll also add that I absolutely HATE the way that the stock princeton RI's speaker breaks up too, so between that speaker, and the PI, the stock princeton has pretty nasty overdrive. (which I think is why you'll find both people who talk about how well princeton's work as a pedal platform, and others who talk about how picky they are). For a Jensen, I much prefer a C10Q over the C10R in a princeton (or better yet, a jupiter speaker), although I also love a good british speaker like a celestion gold or vintage 10 in a princeton.

    Now if you are playing at medium band volumes, I'd say for most people, the princeton totally runs out of headroom fast, and can even get quickly drowned out. In the same situation, the deluxe might offer cleans at that volume.

    All things are relative though - I've also played huge festival shows to thousands of people with my princeton with a celestion gold 10", and I had enough stage volume to not need my mic'd princeton in my monitor at all. Meanwhile, I've also experienced club shows with a heavy handed drummer where even a deluxe would get buried. Volume needs change a lot band to band, player to player, venue to venue...
     
    DJ_61 and Peppy like this.
  13. daacrusher2001

    daacrusher2001 Silver Supporting Member

    Messages:
    5,643
    Joined:
    May 25, 2008
    Location:
    NJ
    My experience with my Allen Accomplice - which is based on a deluxe but has some of David's features - is a bit different. For example, it has a bright switch (on or off). Works great. Fizzy is not a word I'd use when describing it. Plus it has the RAW feature which gives it some tweedish OD.

    If I got a Princeton, I'd probably opt for a Headstrong Lil King. Possibly a Tyler.
     
  14. saltydogg

    saltydogg Rock & Roll Enthusiast Gold Supporting Member

    Messages:
    7,094
    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2008
    Location:
    Morris County, NJ
    I prefer the Princeton over the Deluxe. I’d get the Deluxe if I was going to gig it and needed the additional horsepower over the 12W Princeton.

    I have a PRRI with a 10” and had one with a 12” speaker. Using the 12” model at a jam, it kept-up pretty well with a drummer, bass, and the other guitar player using a DRRI. I think he was little jealous of my PRRI, actually. We were both using strats.

    For gigging, I prefer tweeds tho.

    Hope you’re doing well!
     
    daacrusher2001 likes this.
  15. beeswax75

    beeswax75 Member

    Messages:
    347
    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2019
    I own a brownface '62. The amp is great, but the fixed bias is a drag. The fixed bias seems to make it super touch sensitive, which makes you a better player. A little mix of Tweed and BF being the transition circuit. There's very good reasons to get a Princeton these days, to answer your question. Great for small venues. Julian Lage plays one at larger venues, even.

    Only reason to buy bigger amps really is if you can't mic it. It might be good to have one in your arsenal for that situation.
     
  16. Jerry

    Jerry Silver Supporting Member

    Messages:
    618
    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2007
    Location:
    Central,IL
    A Silverface Princeton reverb works pretty well for Kenny Vaughan.
     
  17. babbyb

    babbyb Supporting Member

    Messages:
    1,057
    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2011
    Location:
    with Daryl Jr. and Mr. Belt
    The trem on a PR is far superior to a DR. Other than that, they're in similar territory. Not close enough to be redundant, but if you're not trying to break the bank I'd hedge toward a brown/tuxedo Princeton for a little more variety.
     
  18. Brion

    Brion Supporting Member

    Messages:
    3,803
    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2002
    Location:
    Kentucky
    For what it is worth, I have had a Silverface DR, 1976 build I believe, and had a PRRI and liked the DR a bit more. They were in the same ballpark I built a 6G2 from scratch and I find that It is different enough to not seem redundant. I have not played the Accomplice , the only Allen amp I have tried is an Old Flame despite the fact that Dave Allen is local to me and he did an excellent job fixing up an old Twin Reverb for me.
     
  19. smolder

    smolder Gold Supporting Member

    Messages:
    14,192
    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2008
    Location:
    Central Rocky Mountains
    I have three princetons. A brown. A sf reverb. And a bf reverb circuit with hefty transformers and 6L6’s. They are all my builds. Love em.

    I also have a ‘78 and a ‘74 deluxe reverb. I just can’t get along with them no matter what speakers I pair with them. One is spoken for and I think I’ll sell the other and look for a Vibrolux reverb.

    to your point... being able to push the PR to 7 where the deluxe would be about 4 is huge. Yes, there is value in having one.
     
    Muttlyboy likes this.
  20. pete12string

    pete12string Supporting Member

    Messages:
    2,548
    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2012
    Location:
    New Jersey
    I have a Li’l Dawg Brownface Princeton - the Choco Prince. I got it with the 25 watt OT but the output is closer to 18 or 20 watts. A little more headroom than the standard 12 watt. 12” Weber ceramic speaker. There is no better tremolo than a brownface Fender’s! I have 2 other Li’l Dawg amps and the quality is tops. Very quiet, extremely well built, and they sound fantastic. I also have 3 Germino’s and 2 Carol-Ann’s. I gotta downsize!!! :eek:
     

Share This Page