Fender Rivera Concert-- mod or give up?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by EBGB, Apr 15, 2008.

  1. EBGB

    EBGB Member

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    I've had this amp since high school. It has had maintenance. It has sounded pretty good at times. I mainly use the clean channel.

    But my 68 Vibrolux Reverb (blackfaced) makes it pale by comparison.

    The Concert can sound a little cardboard-y dull if the treble is down, or piercing if the treble is up. The lead channel is muddy and tubby.

    It is hard to find a handwired amp, this portable, and with this much clean headroom. I bought it for $450 20 years ago. There are techs who like to mod this amp. It's just hard to go that route without knowing the outcome (I'm picky). Should I mod or should I sell (if this circuit is just too different from the bf cleans I love)?

    This might be a question for the technical area too.
     
  2. 9fingers

    9fingers Supporting Member

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    Smark (Mark Mitchell), pickup guru on the FDP, plays a Rivera Concert with Torres mods & gets KILLER tone, largley from the amp without pedals. (Of course the fact that he is an exceptional player helps too). You might check there & ask him what the mods were exactly.
     
  3. lakesider

    lakesider Member

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    I had one of those amps for a long time. In the late 80's I had Lee Jackson do his mod which gave the mids 5 different voices. It was great. I wish I hadn't sold it.
     
  4. StompBoxBlues

    StompBoxBlues Member

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    I've got one too...I bought last year having never heard of them before that.

    I go back and forth about it...sometimes (is it my mood, or what) using the same guitar and maybe different pedals, but sometimes the same pedals, some days I love it's clean, somedays yuch..

    It drives me crazy. Same even with the OD, I can set it to some settings I like, but my perception of this amp, varies the most of any amp I have ever owned, on a daily basis. Even I think in the same day, can play it, walk away, come back, play it and get the opposite impression of it.

    The thing drives me nuts. I'm selling mine. Life's too short. I already have some other amps I am much happier with and see no need to spend a lot of time and money on it, especially considering I don't think it will bring much (modded or not) anyway...
     
  5. tmac

    tmac Goldmember Gold Supporting Member

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  6. PFunk

    PFunk Member

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    Replace the stock speaker if you haven't already with something better and start from there. You'll notice an improvement instantly.
     
  7. StompBoxBlues

    StompBoxBlues Member

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    Any particular favorites?
     
  8. EBGB

    EBGB Member

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    Let's put this down to minimum acceptable outcome...

    Can the clean channel be modded to sound blackface?

    (BTW Will any mods to the clean channel also affect the lead channel?)

    As far as I'm concerned I'll be happy with bf cleans-- the lead channel is just a bonus if it's usable.
     
  9. PFunk

    PFunk Member

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    I had good results with an EV 12-L, although I sold the amp and kept the speaker. Others have mentioned Celestions, although I'm not certain which model, but anything decent will take the flabbyness out of that amp and should tighten it up with overall better sound, subject to the user preferences, of course.

    Some 12-Ls should sound pretty good with that new TDS of yours as well!!
     
  10. StompBoxBlues

    StompBoxBlues Member

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    Thanks for the advice! I actually have an open back 2 x 10" (converted from 12's) with Legend speakers, and I AM liking it. Thinking of reverting back and picking up some 12's...so this was good to hear.

    I was thinking of running it by Fuchs to hear what they think. I am also tempted by the Red, White, and Blues speaker line.
     

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