Are mods to VOX V847 WAH worth it?

Discussion in 'Effects, Pedals, Strings & Things' started by Tripp, Mar 11, 2006.

  1. Tripp

    Tripp Member

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    I need a wah and I'm considering Teese wizard, but....

    I've got a vox wah V847 that I bought about 10 years ago. I only used it about 6 months and then put it away so it's almost in perfect shape but it does suck tone and has other issues that can be found on this forum.

    I've been researching on this site some of the modifications that you can do such as true bypass, added gain (unity gain I think) to compensate for volume loss, AC jack, etc... I'm wandering if all the modifications is worth it or am I better off getting a Teese or perhaps a clyde or something.

    I don't mind doing the work and I do already have the 847. I just don't want to spend the time and money and still be dissapointed.

    Any input you have is appreciated.
     
  2. CocoTone

    CocoTone Senior Member

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    Absolutely do the mods, and save your bucks. With a good bypass switch, they are as vintage sounding as anyones gonna need. How often can you use a wah in a night anyways without sounding repetetive?

    CT.
     
  3. gururyan

    gururyan Member

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    I had Keeley mod mine a few years back, when there was just 2 or 3 things he did to them. Anyway, that horrible tone suck was gone and the sweep was wider and more vocal...he also added a power jack. To answer your question, it was worth it for sure. Would I do it over again?...no, I would buy a "boutique" wah like RMC/Teese/Wizard/Area51/etc.
     
  4. drolling

    drolling Member

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    Yes, change the switch to a DP/DT for true-bypass. That'll take care of the main problem w/the V847. That's all I did to mine.

    There's lots of other mods, but that's the only essential one, IMO.
     
  5. fr8_trane

    fr8_trane Member

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    For me the difference in tone between a $40 mod and a $200 bootique wah is not enough to justify the extra cost of the bootique.

    Do the true bypass mod; swap the inductor for a dunlop red fasel and change a couple of the resistor and cap values and you have 95% of the bootique tone for 20% of the cost. The last 5% is gonna cost ya.
     
  6. jhc

    jhc Senior Member

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    +1 - only one I did too
     
  7. brent

    brent Member

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    to me a non-truebypass wah is useless

    and I'm FAR from being a true-bypass zealot
     
  8. drolling

    drolling Member

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    Yes, and drilling a hole in that thick casing for a DC jack requires plenty elbow grease, if you really need to use a power supply, just buy a battery clip and splice it onto a 9v adaptor. The wire's thin enough to squeeze thru' the space between the top and bottom plate.

    The red Fasel's a cool sounding inductor. I put one in an old Dunlop Crybaby, and it really improved the overall tone, but the stock tone of the Vox is still better. I did A/B them before getting rid of the Crybaby. If you want to try something really wacky, the yellow Fasel will give your wah a vowelly, ring modulated, backwards sounding quack that reminded me of my very first pedal - the Colorsound wah. Not a traditional sound, but very weird & interesting..
     
  9. Madsman

    Madsman Member

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    V847 new = $?
    DPDT = $?
    red Fasel = $?

    I think you're looking at around $100 for that setup. There are new true bypass wahs available for that price range, and there are boutique wahs available used in that price range.

    Then if you want dc, without the battery clip, a better pot, an LED, etc... gets pricier. If you want to add switchable Qs and sweep ranges, output buffer, etc... it gets more expensive again.

    I WILL mod my Vox wah eventually, but I'll do it for the fun and the learning experience. When you price it out, it's cheaper to buy a used Budda wah than to buy a Vox or Crybaby, TB it, and put in a new inductor. Plus, resale on your modded wah will not be close to what resale on a "boutique" wah is, if you're the "frequent pedal turnover type."

    The bottom line is, you CAN mod a V847 for a lot less than buying some of the boutique wahs out there. But your mods can easily escalate in costs until you've spent almost the same money, and don't have a warranty, customer support, resale value, etc.

    If you're an electronics tweaker type, it's pretty much a no brainer, unless you're chasing the tone or features of a particular boutique pedal. If you're a hobbyist or a gigging musician with the "I can probably pull this off" attitude, you could make either argument.
     
  10. fr8_trane

    fr8_trane Member

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    The original poster said he already owns a vox wah. The switch is $15 and the fasel is $20.

    If you want to buy a new wah with most of the features of a bootique then the Dunlop crybaby classic comes with true bypass and the red fasel for $80 and is a steal. Shhh don't tell anyone.
     
  11. Madsman

    Madsman Member

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    Hmm... I have read that the Crybaby Classic is not true bypass, and I see it selling for $100. It's a great pedal, and a good deal, but I'd still rather get a used Budda for $100.

    Also, I usually see the DPDT going for $20/25 (it depends on which manufacture you want) and the red fasel for $30 everywhere I looked, back when I did look.
     
  12. drolling

    drolling Member

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    The Bud's a great pedal. It's my main wah, in fact, but the person who started this thread already has the Vox wah. As another poster mentioned, true-bypass is essential for most wahs, as they're notorious tone-suckers in bypass mode. The V847's no exception.

    DP/DT switches have gone way down in price over the years, and the Chinese made one I used cost $10 CDN. I ordered both Fasels thru' my luthier who got them for $19 CDN a piece, but I still think that the bypass switch is the only mod that a Vox V847 needs, unless it's in a loop.

    And that new Dunlop classic's got flimsy construction and really cheap parts, board mounted jacks, etc. I wouldn't buy one new or used.
     
  13. Tripp

    Tripp Member

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    Yep! I already have the Vox so it looks like it will be worth it to do some of the simpler mods like the true bypass. I don't need the ac plug right now, but when I set up my pedalboard and attach them to board, then I think the AC adapter would be the ticket.

    As far as drilling holes...I have a big drill press to do that if needed.

    I'm not really an electronics fanatic and I don't care to get that involved. I don't mind switching caps, switches, etc...but I certainly don't want to be reconfiguring the whole pedal.

    So I'll think I'll get started with the true by-pass. Does anyone have a good link to the switch I'll need and maybe some simple instructions?

    Thanks again!
     
  14. Ken Swanson

    Ken Swanson Silver Supporting Member

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    Go to fulltone. He has the diagram for replacing the switch. As far as parts go, Smallbear electronics, area 51, arial fx's or mojo musical supply has all the parts you will need. It is a fun project! I completely reworked an old thomas crybaby, and it really was a fun project. Is it as good as a teese picture wah? No way, but it sounds a hell of lot better than it was. Good luck.
     
  15. Madsman

    Madsman Member

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    If you're going to do it, you will probably want to do the unity gain mod, and if you're going to do that, you may want to do the vocal mod. They're both just swapping one resistor, and it's very easy by the looks of it.
     
  16. fr8_trane

    fr8_trane Member

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    I've seen the Classic as low as $90 but in general you are right about it being $100 - my mistake.

    Small bear has quality Carling DPDT switches for $8.50 and the Fasel inductors for $20. I have seen them at a couple other sites for $15.

    Having just modded a newer GCB-95 recently I can tell you that a red fasel, true bypass as per http://www.stinkfoot.se/andreas/diy/mods/dunlop.htm, a 47k Q resistor, a 2.2k mid resistor, a 47k input resistor and lower gain transistors are all you need to make your crappy dunlop wah sound PHENOMENAL.

    The stinkfoot truebypass is very important as it ELIMINATES any popping without using pulldown resistors. Also This site pretty much nails every mod that counts.

    http://fuzzcentral.tripod.com/axiswah.html
     
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  17. tmuka

    tmuka Member

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    Hi, I have a quick question. Are you saying that the stock v847 inductor sounds better than the fasel red, or just that the vox was good enough it can do without the upgrade, unlike the dunlop?

    Thanks!
     
  18. CocoTone

    CocoTone Senior Member

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    Click on the link in my signature, and listen to the Wah in the beginning of The Letter, and you'll hear what it'll sound like.

    CT.
     
  19. drbob1

    drbob1 Silver Supporting Member

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    Or you could just buy one of the DIY boards and the dp/dt switch-with the pots for Q and gain you get basically an RMC at 1/3 the cost.
     

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