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Gibson Falcon Amp

MikeDrop16701

Member
Messages
231
I've always heard some decent things about the gibson falcon amp, so a friend of mine was talking to me last night and he said he would sell me his 1964 Gibson falcon amp for $300. Of course I jumped on the offer. It has a celestion blue speaker in it. Im not really a celestion fan, and Im wondering is this a good speaker to match the amp? is the Gibson Falcon more american or british circuit and what would be a good match for this amp? any input on this amp would be appreciated as I dont know much about them

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jnovac1

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
7,498
lots of potential, fabulous trem and reverb. there’s a simple mod in the tone circuit (may have already been done?), clipping out a piece that makes the amp thin and bright. once that is done, these amps are hard to beat. not too loud, which is exactly what many people need. the blue might be too bright. i had a reverend alltone 1250 in mine, sounded great. i believe most of ‘em have redwood cabs.
 

pickslide

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
4,133
I had one a few years back and loved the trem and reverb. The tone was more american to me. Mine didnt break up at all, not sure why, but I still regret selling it. Sounded excellent with pedals too!
 

HeavyCream

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
5,380
The earlier 60’s Falcon’s with the dark brown grill cloth, like you have, are the more desirable versions. Gibson was constantly playing with their circuits and by the late 60’s they were all too bright, clean and sterile. Their decline was so bad they didn’t make it too far into the 70’s. I’ve never owned one, but kicked the tires on a couple Falcons. Even if you have to get it a check up, $300 is a sweet price imo. Especially since it has a Blue. I’m not sure if it’s a good fit, your ears will have to tell you. A lot of guys do like Celestion Alnicos in vintage American voiced amps. If you don’t like it, sell it. Easy $200.
 
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harvey j

Member
Messages
1,696
The earlier 60’s Falcon’s with the brown face cloth, like you have, are the more desirable versions. Gibson was constantly playing with their circuits and by the late 60’s they were all to bright, clean and sterile. Their decline was so bad they didn’t make it too far into the 70’s. I’ve never owned one, but kicked the tires on a couple Falcons. Even if you have to get it a check up, $300 is a sweet price imo. Especially since it has a Blue. I’m not sure if it’s a good fit, your ears will have to tell you. A lot of guys do like Celestion Alnicos in vintage American voiced amps. If you don’t like it, sell it. Easy $200.
They have 6eu7 preamp tubes, they are not replacements for a 12ax7, these amps need a lot of work to make them sound good.
 
Messages
6,031
They have 6eu7 preamp tubes, they are not replacements for a 12ax7, these amps need a lot of work to make them sound good.

Mmmm…there is not as much to be done as perhaps some techs might want some people to believe. I have owned a number of these single slant cab Gibsons. Sometimes a recap and a speaker gets it done. Certain of the CTS speakers that Gibson used are excessively bright and harsh. As noted, there is a simple mod that removes a tone circuit.
 
Messages
6,031
As for the 6EU7, IF that concerns one, the socket can be rewired for a 12A-7 tube. Iirc, 6EU7’s specs are nearly identical to the 12AX7. I have never needed to rewire a socket to avoid using a 6EU7.
 

harvey j

Member
Messages
1,696
As for the 6EU7, IF that concerns one, the socket can be rewired for a 12A-7 tube. Iirc, 6EU7’s specs are nearly identical to the 12AX7. I have never needed to rewire a socket to avoid using a 6EU7.
6eu7s are similar to a 12ax7, but they are not interchangeable and only a few companys make them. these falcons sound terrible even with a speaker change, but i have modded a few and they can sound pretty good.
 
Messages
6,031
6eu7s are similar to a 12ax7, but they are not interchangeable and only a few companys make them. these falcons sound terrible even with a speaker change, but i have modded a few and they can sound pretty good.

Harvey, all due respects…but I noted that they are not interchangeable by stating that one would need to re-wire the socket/s in order to use a 12AX7 to replace a 6EU7.
And…I have owned a Falcon that did NOT sound terrible even with its OEM speaker. It was a rare one, I admit, because I have never heard one to match it. A fellow liked it but did not want to pay what I wanted for it….recapped and made proper. He bought one online for about $200 less, and it did not sound the same after the same work was done to it.
I owned three models of the same Gibson/Epiphone amp…all three built within weeks of each other. None of them matched the schematic exactly, and none of the three matched the other two exactly….all were dead stock. None of them sounded like the others, either. Odd things happened at the factory, I guess????
 

HeavyCream

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
5,380
Once they got to the light grill cloth and front facing controls, they were a disaster. The amp you have is cool imo. It might need some maintenance and a couple tweaks, but they can sound great. It’s hard to know exactly what you have with a Gibson from that era because they were constantly making changes. Also, like @Steppin' Wolfe noted, re-wiring the sockets to accept 12AX7 isn’t difficult. 6EU7’s have different pin outs but are very similar to 12AX7. FWIW, NOS 6EU7’s are a lot cheaper by comparison.

 
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mixsit

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
1,241
Are these amps supposed to have a lot of headroom? Mine is dimed on volume and tone and it stays very clean
Hmm. Thinking back to.. 1965? here. 'Dimed, was not very loud. The 'still clean part was a 'not a particularly high sensitivity front end.
 

mixsit

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
1,241
mine developed a nice throaty overdrive around 2 o’clock. i wonder if your still has that tone circuit three legged network…
Curious, what you are/were feeding it to get that? 'Gibson Less Paul Jr here and I could be wrong but don't recall anything in the way of saturation.
 
Messages
6,031
Stratocaster

In addition to these amps being rather clean machines in stock form, a Fender single coil simply does not push an amp circuit in the manner that a P90 or a big humbucker will push an amp. That is why all Fender players have a boost/overdrive pedal in between the guitar and the amp.
Also, these amps are cathode biased. One does not have to bias, but a certain pair of power tubes may be cold Biasing tubes and not 2ant to go into overdrive. That is one secret about cathode biased amps. One needs to run power tubes that will let the amp do what one wants it to do. I like the bias in a cathode biased, push/pull amp to be hot.
 




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