Divided By 13 RSA31...anyone played it?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by hw2nw, Jun 5, 2006.

  1. hw2nw

    hw2nw Member

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    I did a search but didn't get much. Anyways, I'm looking into a few EL84 amps that kick ass. I love ac30s, that brit chime, all of it, so a boutique vox-killer might be the ticket! What make me think this may be a great choice is the half power switch, 2 channels, and that great /13 harmonic content.

    I would love to hear some opinions on what it excels at, and if you chose something else, why?


    Thanks!
     
  2. hw2nw

    hw2nw Member

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    I could also be interested in the ert33, so if you've played that one too I'd love to hear from you.
     
  3. RichSZ

    RichSZ Member

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    Yep, owned one for a while. Pick your Vox-style adjective: chime, sparkle, clang, roar (think Brian May). It had it all.

    The Midrange control on the RSA 31 is very useful and offers a lot of tonal variation.

    Bit of advice is to get the smallbox version of this particular amp. The click channel on this amp not needed to get the most out of it. It is NOT as gainy as the click on the FTR 37. Actually it's a little more raw sounding than the regular channel on the RSA 31 and can be achieved with the Normal channel quite easily. The half power switch doesn't affect the volume much but gives you the sweet brakup earlier.

    A few of us compared it to real gray panel Vox and it was right in the same league (easily). Maybe a bit better because the construction on the RSA 31 is rock solid.

    2 Celestion blues really make this amp shine. It worked equally well with my EJ strat or my R9.

    Had to sell because for me the FTR37 was more useful in my situation at the time. Still wish I had that one back, and I will again....someday.

    -Rich

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  4. gkelm

    gkelm Supporting Member

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    "GoodGas" here in Dallas has one...we a/b'd with my AC30 RI and they were very close. By comparison the Vox had a bit more honkiness to my ears...not a bad thing, just a bit different. Really great amp, although you might consider a Hayseed as well.
    Greg
     
  5. hw2nw

    hw2nw Member

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    There's a few high end EL84 amps I'm looking at.

    /13 RSA31
    Komet Constellation
    65amps London/Marquee
    Matchless DC30

    I think every day I find another option that I like...hard to decide. Luckily I have a couple months before the $ rolls in! :D

    But yeah, I'm still compiling options. TGP input is always valued!
     
  6. westerhever

    westerhever Member

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    i'd be interested in an rsa31 small box head as well and i'd love to hear some clips. anyone?
     
  7. Richards

    Richards Member

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    I have owned a RSA 31 for the last 11 months, it is my go to amp. The RSA 31 (Div by 13) is very very voxy in its tones, all the cliches are true with this amp, chimey as hell, glassy, janglely, lots of clean head room, I have a/b this with my vox and prefer the Div by 13, its sounds bigger, with more definition in the bottom end.. I spent literally 8 months deciding on what Vox styled amp I would by, researched every amp in this class by all possible makers, and was estatic about my decision. The bottom line is the RSA 31 sounds bigger, has better mid spectrum tones, bass is tight and defined on loud volumes, and jesus, it just never stops chimming!! Hope that helps.
    My RSA 31 vs. my 64 Vox AC-30 ,the RSA 31 (Div by 13) , I have a/b this with my vox many times and slightly prefer the Div by 13, its sounds bigger, with more definition in the bottom end. My 64 Vox sounds amazing , but I have the best of both worlds, one original one and the other amp (RSA 31) is a beefier refined AC-30. The bottom line is the RSA 31 sounds bigger, has better mid spectrum tones, bass is tight and as I repeat myself from the first paragraph , the tones on this amp stay clear and focused on loud volumes. Get the big head version with 2 channels IMO , opens up a whole new universe. Not to mention like all reputable boutique amp makers out there, the amp is always reliable. Many gigs with my AC-30 over the last 8 years, it has let me down many a time, and that is playing 2-3 times a week for 10 months of the year. Divided by 13 RSA-31 is built like a tank, and so I imagine the rest of Fred's amps are. Anyway no problems so far, knock on wood.
     
  8. hw2nw

    hw2nw Member

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    In your research, did you ever try the Matchless DC30 vs. the RSA31? Those are probably my top two contenders. They ARE different, but both EL84 beasts! :D
     
  9. Rock Fella

    Rock Fella Member

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    If you are considering going the EL84 route, dont forget about the UK Cornford Hellcat, a PTP boutique overkill work of art.
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  10. eddie101

    eddie101 Member

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    How about Bruno Underground 30, which is also EL84 based amp? Has anyone played it and compared it with RSA31?
     
  11. bforest4

    bforest4 Supporting Member

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    Heard the Bruno UG30 at the LA Amp Show and it was definitely in my top few amps at the show. It was better than the Komet Constellation(2nd favorite) which I directly compared it to in the same room. I am very curious about the RSA31 but haven't heard one yet.
     
  12. GoodGAS

    GoodGAS Supporting Member

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    I own an RSA 31 and a Komet Constellation...both very wonderful in their own rite.

    No question though that the RSA paired with Celestion Blues will put you in V** heaven...While Komet at lower gain settings gets close, it becomes more marshally and aggressive at higher gain settings....not a bad thing at all.

    In some respects I prefer the RSA over my FTR particularly with HB based guitars...
     
  13. hw2nw

    hw2nw Member

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    awesome. Any comparisons between the RSA and DC30?
     
  14. hw2nw

    hw2nw Member

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    bumpity.

    I checked out the 65amps London...LOVED it. However, I have heard it sounds great on its own, and next to a /13 it sounds thin! So now I'm kinda back in the /13 camp.

    non-MV's scare me...I guess I'm a control freak and it's great for me to vary the volume. for reference I crank my Bad Cat Hot Cat 30R to 12 o'clock live, pretty close to its volume peak before it just starts to drive more. If I can stay around that volume wise it will work. Jon (curehardy) recommended a variac with a /13...I may try that. The RSA31 still sounds like the one because of the EL84s...I'm really looking for a Vox killer! However, any other suggestions are totally welcome.

    Help a master volume guy break out of his shell!!

    :D
     
  15. Sniper-V

    Sniper-V Member

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    I too am interested in the /13s and although I've never played thorugh any of them, I don't think I could ever say my London sounds thin. I really really really like mine!

    But, still interested in the /13s...


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  16. hw2nw

    hw2nw Member

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    yeah, it seems as though very few have purchased the RSA31. I'm very curious though, and TrueTone music (closest dealer in LA) does not have them.

    Also, how do direct orders work, as far as % up front and turnaround time? If you'd feel more comfortable answering with a PM, that'd be fine too.

    I'd just like to go through my options before I drop $3k :D
     
  17. hw2nw

    hw2nw Member

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    about how loud is this thing on full and half power? I'm trying to figure out if it will be overpowered or just right for my live work.
     
  18. dookie

    dookie Member

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    hw2nw,

    Since you're in Orange County, you should take a trip to Tone Merchants (Right next to the 57 and Katella)... Currently, there's a used /13 RSA23 that's on consignment with the matching cab... I played through it and thought it sounded killer...

    While you're up there, you should also check out the Heritage Briton, Heritage Briton II, and the newly arrived Top Hat Supreme 16...

    That will give you some really nice EL84 amps to check out (though the RSA is not an EL84 amp)...

    CORRECTION: My bad... It isn't the RSA23 that's there... It's the JRT9/15... Sorry about the confusion... The JRT has an EL84 channel with a 6V6 channel... After going through a bunch of amps, I got confused... :messedup :jo

    The JRT does sound killer...
     
  19. lcjc800

    lcjc800 Member

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    I've had my ert 33 for almost 3 months and I love it. It took a little tweaking of the tubes to get it quiet, but after that it has been glorious it does a good Vox sparkle and can crunch and grind some too. Loves a good OD, Boost and takes a distortion pedal well also. I just changed the 84's and it did tighten up the bottom, I don't know how old the tubes that were in it when I bought it were so I changed them and it improved. I bought JJ's and for $36.00 delivered, I'm not going to complain if it needs them 2 or 3 times a year if it comes to that, but who knows, work has kept me from enjoying this part of my life since the first of the year. I had intended on buying a RSA 23 next, but I have recently come across a lovepedal CoT50 and want to see how that crunches in the band situation before I just jump at another 13. The 33 has a very nice reverb and at half power it is still loud enough for anything that it may face in my life, and at full power it has plenty of clean headroom. I have a 2 x 12 floating baffle open back with a Greenback and a V30, sounds and looks incredible!

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  20. hw2nw

    hw2nw Member

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    well i went down to the shop, played the RSA31. Wow. it was total Vox, sounded like the best pissed off AC30 I've played. Chords just jumped out of that amp. I wish I could play that and the 65amps side by side because I thought that one was cool too, but the RSA31 just sang. Bold, ballsy, and tight bass. Some really nice EQ to vary my tone and I was having a blast. I played one of Fred's fat strats through a Marshall basketweave 4x12.

    Part of me was worried about volume...but I think with the half power it is a perfect gig volume. Even full power would work too if I wanted some more clean headroom. I loved the click channel, found it very responsive and not overdone. The first channel was gorgeous clean and then got raunchy very quick...maybe it's just me but it dirtied up with a small twist of the volume knob around 12 o'clock. Guess I gotta just be very gradual with that knob to get into slight crunch zone.

    Overall, I was very impressed. I'll be picking up my RSA31 and matching cab before my next out of town dates...about a month. Woohoo for /13, and for making an amp that would make me want to part with this ungodly amount of earnings!

    I think I want this color scheme...stole this pic from studio8000's thread.

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