Blues Junior or Super Champ XD

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by Hound Dog61, Dec 27, 2009.


  1. Hound Dog61

    Hound Dog61 Member

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    I currently have an amp that I am not happy with, and I am looking for a new one. I have narrowed it down to either a blues junior or a super champ xd. I use some pedals, so the built in effects aren't necessary(but might be nice) but other than that I am not sure on the differences. I am well aware of the super champ fan club, but I am just wondering which one you guys would between the two. Lay it on me fellas!
     
  2. cratz2

    cratz2 Member

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    I had a stock Blues Jr, then upgraded the speaker and tubes, but didn't do any mods. I was relatively happy with it, but could never get past how small it always sounded.

    Never bought an SC XD, but I probably have 5 hours of playing through it. Some of the models are pretty impressive sounding to my ears, but that was stock and not in my house.

    I think I'd go for the Blues Jr if I pretty much just wanted Fender cleans and very slightly breakup or go for the SC XD if wanted more variety in a single package.
     
  3. grateful.ed

    grateful.ed Member

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    I don't own a super champ, but played one at a jam a few weeks ago. It was dimed for about 2 hours and blew up....wasn't cutting through the mix either.

    A blues junior does cut through (12" speaker) in a smaller room so if your playing out, I think this is a better choice.

    If it's for home/practice....the super champ may be an ok choice.
     
  4. champster

    champster Member

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    Two totally different amps. I've owned 2 blues jrs. The first I kept stock but it just wasn't working for me so I sold it. Several years later I bought another blues jr. I tried different speakers, still sounded basically the same. Next I did the BillM mods. The amp did sound slightly different but still sounded basically like a stock blues jr. You either like the sound or you don't.

    I presently own 2 SCXDs and love they way they sound and work with the band I play with. The SCXD has a very typical Fender sound. Even with a 10" speaker they sound really good. I did stick one of my SCXDs in a used SS cab with a 12" speaker. That amp really sounds great.

    In the end you really need to try the Blues jr. and the SCXD and decide which sounds better to you.
     
  5. Hound Dog61

    Hound Dog61 Member

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    Yeah, I figured I would have to go try it. I was just looking for some opinions. I don't gig out, just do some garage jams, bedroom, etc. Just wanting some pros and cons, keep 'em coming.
     
  6. MBreinin

    MBreinin Member

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    I hate the Blues Jr. I have owned two SCXDs. Just play it through a 2x12 and it sounds 10x better. The Blues Jr. always sounded like canned ass to me. But that is just me.

    Mike
     
  7. zaddn

    zaddn Member

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    i did the billm mods and love the sound of my blues junior. i would recommend the billm basic mods, a new output transformer, the presence control, and the audio taper master volume (makes controlling your volume at the lower range for bedroom playing a lot easier).

    for what it is, and what you pay for it, i think the blues junior is worth it, especially if you pick up a used one here. however, there is no getting around the fact it is an entry level tube amp, not a headstrong, redplate, or two rock amp. it is what it is, so you need to play it.
     
  8. theraygun

    theraygun Member

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    Out of the box the SCXD sounds way better than the BJr. I love the flexibility and tone of the SCXD. I've had a BJr, but couldn't get rid of it fast enough. IMO if you are going to invest in all the BJr mods, you might as well buy a Princeton.
     
  9. soundchaser59

    soundchaser59 Supporting Member

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    To theraygun you listen, mind what you have learned, save you it will....
     
  10. candid_x

    candid_x Supporting Member

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    If it had the toy original speaker, course it wouldn't cut through a band mix.

    What does "blew up" mean? A bad tube or something serious?
     
  11. darkstar11

    darkstar11 Member

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    I've had both and still have my Blues Jr.

    The SCXD is a nice amp and gives great bang for buck ... But to me it sounded very thin and boxy. I think if you get SCXD plan on upgrading the speaker.

    My Blues Jr is a NOS tweed edition and has Billm tone stack mods and Mercury transformers, replaced tubes and speaker.

    With all the mods... the Blues Jr sounds as good if not better than many of the 1x12 boutique amps I have played. It is so warm and mellow sounding. But we are talking about $300-400 bucks in mods. (I bought mine used with the mods already completed for about the cost of a new BJr. )

    I have heard stock Blue Jr black tolex and I would still take that over the SCXD. Knowing you can do some mods down the road and have an excellent and very solid tube amp.

    My BJr serves me well in small clubs and I always get a compliment or 2 on my tone. It doesn't sound small at all.
     
  12. Bob V

    Bob V Member

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    SCXD is a toy. Lots of dialed in tones and none of them are as nice as the Blues Jr.
    I've never seen a SuperChamp XD being played by a professional musician, but it seems that everywhere I go I see someone gigging with a Blues Jr. And trust me, the BillM mods make a great amp even better.
     
  13. Joe L

    Joe L Supporting Member

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    I had both an extensively Billm modded BJ and a a SCXD. Completely different sounds, but like them both. Unfortunately the SCXD developed a loud static sound (not tube related) in the board and I was forced to send it back to Musicians Friend under the extended warranty I bought. I liked the Fendery sound of the SCXD, but the modded BJ had fuller,cleaner,louder sound. I have since replaced the SCXD with a PRRI which Musiciands Friend sold to me for $650, the Fender Friday special price from July. I originally bought the SCXD on Fender Friday at $199, so they honored the special pricing with the PRRI as a courtesy. Great company to deal with. The PRRI is incredible especially with the T020 O/T, and JJ6V6 upgrades. My point here is that my SCXD on channel one with the spring reverb setting gave me a PRRI type of Fendery sound. However, I found that after the first week, I did not use many other amp sounds which is why I upgraded to the PRRI to get that ultimate Fender sound.
     
  14. MBreinin

    MBreinin Member

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    If the Blues Jr. is so great, why does everyone sink hundreds into Bill M mods and new transformers? An amp sucks if it needs a ton of mods to be good. Put a SCXD through a real cabinet, use the clean channel for cleans and model 8 for dirt and it will slay a Blues Jr. Or get a Pro Junior, which will kill a Blues Jr. with no mods. It is a mini-Bassman.

    Mike
     
  15. medblues

    medblues Member

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    I already had a couple of amp modelers, so I skipped SCXD and went to Blues Jr NOS- I liked the tweed look better too. I liked it a lot as stock. Later, when I had more money, I had the BillM mods installed and now it feels like the amp's tonal variety has increased two-fold and it sounds like a larger amp. Many people love the Blues Jr stock (and many hate it !). I vote against SCXD because you can get very good amp modelers and FX separately. With the BillM clean boost module on the Blues Jr, you can get another 10 dB. By changing the speaker to a more efficient one to get another few decibels ( I put in an Eminence Wizard), now I have a 30 lb amp that outperforms many larger amps for under $ 800.
     
  16. Guitar Dave T

    Guitar Dave T Member

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    I don't invest in the BillM mods and love the Blues Jr with two changes:

    1. JJ EL84's - fattens the sound up significantly over the stock GT/Sovteks
    2. Celestion G12H30 - opens the amp up and makes it a real pro stage player with NO, ZIP, NADA boxiness
    I bring a Blues Jr with these two upgrades to all gigs as a backup, and to jump on if I invite another guitar player to come up and sit in. Some nights, I really hope someone shows up who I can invite up just to give me a chance to jump on the Blues Jr. Plugging an SG straight into it without effects and cranking it up will make the hair stand up on the back of your neck.
     
  17. Joe L

    Joe L Supporting Member

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    Valid comment MBreinin makes on the BJ. As far as I am concerned, I liked the amp before the mods and like it even more with the changes. The potential for improvement is there with the BJ. My PRRI has great tone, for $65 Billm installed, the upgraded T020 O/T and remedied the only weak part I heard in the amp. Now I have two keepers. I tend to improve most things I buy to make them better, whether they be cars amps, guitars. Nothing is manufactured perfect, even boutique amps. That's just me and my personal perefernce.
     
  18. Maruuk

    Maruuk Member

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    The era of the BJ is over. Boxy midrange, no BF glassy sizzle, no bottom end punch, no headroom--especially with HBs. It was a noble servant of those of modest means back in the day when it was affordable, but these days it's a joke for what they charge. Add in the new tubes, speaker, misc parts and especially the LABOR of the mods and we're in zero bong-for-buck sillyville. Fender's still trying to milk this dinosaur by wrapping it in every color under the rainbow, but it's still yesterday's paper. Cheap tube amp tone has moved on from the BJ: more highs, more versatility, more low end, more distinctive character--and all for less cash.

    Now nobody who's ever played a BJ hates one. They're quite pleasant to play, they make the de rigeur rock n blues noises. They're light, and loud enough to gig. Some guys swear by em like old cars. But ever try to take an old car through the twisties? Or drive one in the snow? I get the nostalgia for a simple workhorse tube amp with Fender on the front. It was a great amp in its day. RIP.

    SCXD or perhaps even better the Bugera V22 are vastly better deals and sound far better than their pricetags. Unless you like limp midrangey generic mush and yearn to sound exactly like every other blues jammer on every bar stage in America.

    The Fender Blues Jr.: you can say this about it....WE ARE BORG.
     
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2009
  19. bbutler123

    bbutler123 Member

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    If the Blues Jr. is a Tweed one, (with the Jensen speaker), I Loooove it. (I have one)
     
  20. MBreinin

    MBreinin Member

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    Oh, and as another option...get a Blues Deluxe. I played one for the first time in GC about a month ago and I was impressed with that amp. Much more than either the BJ or the SCXD.

    Mike
     

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