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crate palomino v16 vs fender blues jr

mclev91

Member
Messages
128
Need help deciding between the two. Both are 15w, but I'll be using it with pedals so planning on only using the clean channel. Also plan on using it for gigging/church venues and such but will be micing. Soon I'm planning on playing both but for now, any feedback is greatly appreciated.
 

guitardan

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
126
The Blues Jr, is a single ch only.....
Controls are: Reverb, Master, Middle, Bass, Treble, "Fat" Switch, Volume

Not exactly sure on the Crate, but may be the same setup....Plus i don't think they are made anymore so you'll have to find a used one....

An alternative to both is the Carvin V16.
Still a single channel, but has a gain control for adding some grit / drive. Plus it has a 5 watt mode : )
See: http://www.carvinguitars.com/products/single.php?product=VINTAGE16

I've owned one in the past, and its great w/ pedals...
 

Dave B

Exit... Dual Stage Left
Gold Supporting Member
Messages
1,832
.....Not exactly sure on the Crate, but may be the same setup.....
Palomino 16: Single Channel - Gain, Bass, Mid, Treble, Boost Switch, Master Volume, and Reverb. No loop, no ext. speaker jack, no ftsw.

Haven't played a Blues Jr in a while, but with what I recollect, the Palomino (I have one now) feels more alive sounding. They showed up on a lot of folks 'sleeper' radar screens over the last two years, so they're not really a well-kept secret anymore. Go look through the recent Palomino threads for some good tone descriptions.

Not to take anything away from the Jr., as it's good in its own right. Hopefully you can test-drive both. However, do not, repeat -DO NOT-, try any of the current Crate V18 or V33s and assume they are similar to the Palomino V16 or V32's. They are in a different league altogether. < Edit: I forgot to mention the 18/33 league is worse. >
guitardan said:
Plus i don't think they are made anymore so you'll have to find a used one....
True. They made quite a few for Guitar Center, so there always seems to be some used ones floating around. If not, check again in a couple of weeks.


guitardan said:
An alternative to both is the Carvin V16.
Nice choice!
 
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Rumors of War

Member
Messages
5,154
The two are similar in control layout, almost identical. I'm with Dave B. in thinking that the Crate sounds more alive. It definitely has the voxy jangle and can get some great overdriven tones. I bought mine a few months ago and just started playing it this week and am blown away by how good it sounds. As I recall, the Blues Jr. has a really unmusical top end when pushed although I think there are mods for this. Anyways, my 2 cents.
 

Hangfire

Member
Messages
1,007
I've owned both, by all means go with the Crate V16 better yet V32 if you can find a "Made in USA" model.

Either one of those are "best bang for the buck" amps!

:rockin
 

UsedAS73

Member
Messages
9
I just brought home a used Crate V3112T last night. I think it was the fore runner to the V32, and was also made in the USA. After cleaning the tubes, tube sockets and input port, I must say that this amp sounds very good through those Ruby EL84s. I only played at low volumes checking the clean tones and overdrive as well. I was very suprised at how good the overdrive sounds at low volumes. A few of the knobs have cooked loose from the plastic inserts that seat them onto the pots, but a couple of drops of superglue seems to have cured that. It came with a footswitch with leds, but one of the LEDs would not work, and I noticed that it had a mono cable for connecting the footswitch to the amp. I'm pretty sure that it was supposed to have a stereo cable since it is a two button switch. The amp seems to run hot, but has very good tone. I think that the V16 is a similar vintage, but only uses two of the EL84 tubes. I am very impressed with this amp, and it seems that my search for a low wattage tube amp that is good for bedroom volumes is over. I also looked at the Carvin V16, as I also own an MTS3200 and an SX-50, but I accidently stumbled upon this V3112T instead.
 

Hangfire

Member
Messages
1,007
I just brought home a used Crate V3112T last night. I think it was the fore runner to the V32, and was also made in the USA. I also looked at the Carvin V16, as I also own an MTS3200 and an SX-50, but I accidently stumbled upon this V3112T instead.
Very good choice, I've owned 3 of the Palominos V32s and currently own the V3112T.

I replaced the V1 position 12AX7 Groove Tube with a 70's vintage Mullard 12AX7 and replaced the Tone Tubby speaker with an Austin Speaker Works KTS-70.

The gain channel is great for that ZZ Top grind but the clean channel absolutely sparkles with the bell tone chime of a Class A amp.

FYI The Palominos were made for and sold by Guitar Center sporting the cream tolex, Celestion speaker, and gold trim, otherwise the same as V3112T.

Congrats on picking up one of the best sleeper amps on the market! :beer
 

rockon1

Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
13,510
I just brought home a used Crate V3112T last night. I think it was the fore runner to the V32, and was also made in the USA. After cleaning the tubes, tube sockets and input port, I must say that this amp sounds very good through those Ruby EL84s. I only played at low volumes checking the clean tones and overdrive as well. I was very suprised at how good the overdrive sounds at low volumes. A few of the knobs have cooked loose from the plastic inserts that seat them onto the pots, but a couple of drops of superglue seems to have cured that. It came with a footswitch with leds, but one of the LEDs would not work, and I noticed that it had a mono cable for connecting the footswitch to the amp. I'm pretty sure that it was supposed to have a stereo cable since it is a two button switch. The amp seems to run hot, but has very good tone. I think that the V16 is a similar vintage, but only uses two of the EL84 tubes. I am very impressed with this amp, and it seems that my search for a low wattage tube amp that is good for bedroom volumes is over. I also looked at the Carvin V16, as I also own an MTS3200 and an SX-50, but I accidently stumbled upon this V3112T instead.
The V32 is GC's exclusive cosmetic package for the V3112 otherwise its the same exact amp. It is interesting to note my V32 is much better made than its older sibling the Vintage Club 50(VC50) The V32 sports pots with metal shafts vs the VC's plastic! The V32 has its jacks off the main board while the VC has em on the main board.(Ive had problems with the jacks on my VC) Lastly the V32 has solder joints from the top thru to the bottom of the board while my VC50 is only soldered on the bottom.

Aside from eating some power tubes over the last 4? years its had zero issue.

At the time I almost bought the V16 but I really wanted an FX loop. The V16 and 32 are both great sounding amps and pretty well made considering the price point IMO.

Ive heard good things about the Blues Jr but never played one! Bob
 

aussiemeats

Member
Messages
645
G'Day,

I like the Crate Palominos V16 and V32, I have V16, a Friend of mine who plays semi

pro, uses the V32. He has many amps; Vintage Fenders and the Like, He uses the

Palomino in clubs, He thinks, as do I, it gets the best overall sound based on 30

watts...which is PLENTY in most club settings.

BTW, Many Of the first run V series Crates were made by St Loius Music in

America, and our very sought after amps. Billy Gibbons, Joe Walsh and Mark Knopfler

to name a few, use them. I have a V16 and a 1976 Marshall 50 watt combo

and I'll say this; IMO, for the money, you can't find a "Made in America" Class A amp

that sound better. Yes Crate has made some "turkeys" but The V-series is not one of

them. There arent alot of them around for sale and if you can find a MIA V series, I'd

buy it in a heartbeat!

Good Luck.
 

monkeywrench

Member
Messages
1
the blues jr. sounds like fender forgot to cut a whole in the cabinet for sound to get out of. dead and muffled.

the v16 has far better "fender" cleans than the jr. and can be cranked to a nice breakup even with the gain really low. it's a great amp, and not just for the money.
 

CaptRKirkB

Member
Messages
485
Ok then there must be something wrong with me. I just tonite picked up a super CL deal on a V-16 Palomino. Totally sweet looking. I had been thinking of getting one for a yr or two. I am normally more of a vintage fender / Magnatone type of guy.
I checked it out when I got it and I "think" it's working fine. Now this is a USA made amp a few yrs old that has basically never been played. Previous owner was an acoustic guy and never played it. Pristine.
I get home and start crankin and banging on it and it is harsh, raspy,rattly, wow just awful.
Now I knew there was a bunch of mods and yes I do have a few vintage tubes. But do I really have to change all the tubes AND the spkr to make it sound decent?

suggestions???

peace Capt Kirk
 

rockon1

Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
13,510
Beat on it loudly for a few days first. The things been sitting since it was new and the speakers not even broken in yet probably.Bob
 

soulohio

Senior Member
Messages
10,999
It shouldn't sound bad. I will say this... in stock form and brand new, to my ears I did not care for the cleans. The overdrive was good.... but that speaker has got to be broken in. I replaced mine with a Blue and all was right in the world.... except with the pure-Fender clean sound. I can't get my V16 to do that well...
 

negriljerry

Member
Messages
10
I also just scored a great deal on a V16 off CL about a week ago, reverb tank missing, big deal. I took it home and installed the (full size) accutronics tank off my old dead Classic 30 and replaced the silly 16 ohm stock speaker (why do Peavey & Crate DO that?) with a well broken in a 8 ohm 90W Mesa Black Shadow by Celestion. The other mod, done by the young guy I bought it from, was to sub out the pre tubes with 12AT7's (JJ Tesla). I checked it with 12AX7 in the 1st position, way too hot for me. The 12AT7 gives a much smoother clean gain. I should mention that I have always preferred to get my dirt offboard, currently using Comp (Guyatone ST2)--> original TS9--> vintage Maxon OD808.

However there's something of a nasty upper mid peak around 3K that I notched out by using a vintage DOD 10 band EQ stompbox. Also the reverb circuit sucks - even with the bigger tank you have to crank it to 7 to get wet, and then it sounds dull and overly springy. Anyone know a fix for this? I did put a 12AX7 back in the #3 pre position to try and get better drive to the reverb.

There's some mystery mojo about this little gem that has me running back to my music room to jam on it all the time, and it's sitting right next to a original USA Fender Blues Deluxe - I wind up blowing through the V16 instead! I bought it to have a lighter amp to carry to rehearsals and some smaller gigs, but the way this baby honks I can use it anywhere.

I currently gig with a blackface Bassman head thru a converted Peavey C30 cab with a monster EV-SRO 12 in it. I've had a couple Peavey Classic 30's and used the Blues Jr quite a bit and IMHO the V16 eats the Blues Jr's lunch.

That being said.......*sigh*...it's a Crate. My gear-snob pals may scorn the brand, but I've been inside and I like the build, and I love the sound. And I pulled off the V16 logo plate off the front, replacing it with a nameplate off a furnace - I re-badged my Peaveys too...
 

fredgarvin

Senior Member
Messages
11,213
I'm still using the V16 I bought when they came out. I haven't found anything that sounds any better. I'm not really looking though.
 

champster

Member
Messages
862
I have a V16 that I took in trade earlier this year. What a great sounding amp, and I generally don't care for EL84 amps. The one I have has an Emi Texas Heat speaker installed. I have owned 2 blues jrs. and never could get them to sound good. I even tried all the BillM mods which just changed how the amp sounded but never made it sound good.
 

tralfax19645

Member
Messages
581
I had a guy bring me a crate vfx 5112 in for repair. I gotta say I really like the overdrive and cleans on this amp and with the built in effects its very cool.
 




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