Fender Champ, but more headroom?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by candletears7, Mar 7, 2015.

  1. jdel77

    jdel77 Silver Supporting Member

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    Got a '78 Marshall JMP MKII 2203 and '93 UK Vox AC30 with Blues for shows. Love 'em to death.
    I'm after a lower wattage, maybe up to 20w, 1×12 combo for jamming at home that must LOVE dirt pedals.
    I played a Champ yesterday and was floored. What a great sound.
    What amp is a basically a Champ but with say 2 or 3 times the clean headroom?
    Obvious choice would be something from Fender. Clean channel on Peavey Classic 30? Is that Fender-ish?
    Can't get that Champ sound outta my mind...
     
  2. MrKite89

    MrKite89 Member

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    Hi!
    What model of Champ did you tried? I have a Fender EC Vibro-Champ and is very loud at home: I can use it at 4-5 with pedals and get good tones without shaking the walls, but I prefer it miked at that volume...It gives its best at loud (maybe too loud at home) volume when you're not recording and you're in front of it...lets say that saggy raunchy tone at 7-8 or louder! ;)
    It has also an attenuator down to 1 watt but I don't like it very much...
    If you want headroom to play at home with pedals get a Deluxe or a AC15 for different tones, but probably you will not turn them over 1 or 2 at home!
     
  3. Ilduce

    Ilduce And now for something completely different! Supporting Member

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    VHT Special 6 head and cab of your choice. Don't let the fact that it's only 6 watts and relatively inexpensive dissuade you from checking one out. They're pretty loud for their size and built like tanks!
     
  4. jdel77

    jdel77 Silver Supporting Member

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    MrKite, here's the amp.


    http://www.achilliesamps.com/champ/

    Looks to be a 5F1. I'm not well versed in all the Fender Tweed/Blackface/Silverface iterations.
    Marshall and Vox I know pretty well.
    Would like it to keep up with a mellow drummer, say about that volume.
    The other amps can handle the angry stuff!

    I always thought Fenders were very clean and midscooped.
    This Champ sounded like a mini Marshall but had it's own thing going on. Fuzzier/rawer gain.
    I know Marshalls are descended from the Bassman. But a more powerful Champ would rock.
     
  5. alexanderplatz

    alexanderplatz Member

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    I have a hot rodded Champ with a multi-tap transformer. The builder who modded it for me told that it could run a 6L6 tube instead of a 6V6 tube. I don't run it that way but at least it is possible. The 6L6 would give you more wattage and, presumably, greater volume. Not necessarily 20 watts though. But couple that set up with a 10 or 12 inch speaker and you'd have more volume than a regular champ. Might not have the same flavor to the tone though.
     
  6. terrapin

    terrapin Member

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    Exactly! And they are great sounding amps. Put a 5751 or other lower gain 12ax7 in the preamp and you can increase the headroom quite a bit.
     
  7. Barnzy

    Barnzy Member

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    [​IMG]
    Here is one possible suggestion....This is my Victoria 5112. It is a 5f1 Champ circuit, but with a 12" speaker and well built transformers. It can be cleaned up by running a 5V4 rectifier tube and choosing your cleaner varieties of pre and power tubes. Also, I have a nice 30 watt Alnico Weber speaker for some of that flavor too. It may be just the ticket, as compared to a standard 8" champ with 5Y3 rect.
    Barnzy
     
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  8. smolder

    smolder Gold Supporting Member

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    A silverface champ (mine is a bronco - essentially a vibro champ) with good tubes, a 6L6, and a Jupiter 8 is stunningly great. It's the best sounding low volume amp I've ever owned.
     
  9. Hulakatt

    Hulakatt Supporting Member

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    is your Marshall a head? What cab do you run it with?

    You can get a 5f1 champ built (or build one yourself) as a head. I built mine as a combo but with a 15 watt OT and some uprated power section resistors to safely run 6k6, 6v6, 6l6, el34 or kt66. Running it with an el34 through my 1960a cab is pretty damn loud and glorious!
     
  10. MrKite89

    MrKite89 Member

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    Beautiful amp...get it and forget the pedals! ;)
    If you want to play with a drummer play it loud: once in a blues jam I used only my Strat, my Champ at 9 and a TS808 for solos...I was louder than the other guitarist with a Blues Deluxe at 3!
    But if you want headroom for pedals and rehearsal, seriously, get a Tweed Deluxe or a Vox AC15: I have the Heritage, now discontinued, the one with the EF86 channel, and it's switchable to 7.5 watts, so you have an amp for practice and an amp for playing with a drummer...
     
  11. jdel77

    jdel77 Silver Supporting Member

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    The MKII 2203 is a head.
    Had an Ubercab but didn't like it. Now have an early 80's JCM800 'B'cab with '75's that I love.
    I'd like to keep the Fender simple and just use it as a combo.
    Interesting about increasing the back end of the amp for higher headroom. I'll research that.
     
  12. jdel77

    jdel77 Silver Supporting Member

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    I have an AC30 so won't go down the path of an AC15.
    Tweed Deluxe sounds interesting. I'll check it out, thanks.
     
  13. DaveKS

    DaveKS Member

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    Those look like nice amps, if you can go test drive deluxe and vibroverb tweeds. Even princeton.
     
  14. tuj

    tuj Member

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    check out a silver face champ.
     
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  15. Serenity

    Serenity Member

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    Check out the Laney L5T Lionheart. The clean channel is excellent Fender/Vox, takes pedals very well; the drive channel will get into Plexi territory. It sounds huge for a 5 watter, but also sounds good at late night practice volumes. I tried most of the usual low watt competition and this one was easily winner. It might cost a bit more, but it's totally worth it.
     
  16. Hulakatt

    Hulakatt Supporting Member

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    I built it using the Triode kit and followed their solution for more headroom and tube swapping:

    http://triodeelectronics.com/5f1kit.html

    I find that I really like the tone with "just" the 6v6 and the bigger iron over stock.

    BTW, I also have the Jupiter 8" in my champ and it sounds amazing! It sounds like a much bigger amp overall now, both much louder and more full with a very even EQ and a nice woody resonance to it.
     
  17. GTRJohnny

    GTRJohnny Member

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    I'm interested in Champs, too. Found one on the Internet in England (Rift?) that made the later Tweed Champ we all know and the earlier wide-panel one. I really like the sound of both. Cool little amps.

    Lil' Dawg amps also makes one, and the clips sound really good. It would seem that it's a good circuit for hotrodding.
     
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  18. amstrtatnut

    amstrtatnut Member

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    Lots of options. I really like my VHT 12/20. It can take a variety of power tubes. I run it at 12 watts and it has pretty good headroom. It has power attenuation to drive tubes hard. Or full power to use pedals.
     
  19. harry65

    harry65 Member

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    Hate to state the obvious but a Princeton or deluxe reverb...........
     
  20. TheoDog

    TheoDog Silver Supporting Member

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    Tweed Princeton or Peinceton NR.
     

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