Help me bond with my Deluxe Reverb

billboneys

Supporting Member
Messages
758
I bought a '78 Deluxe Reverb on here in 2011. It looks like it could be in a museum. I don't think it has ever been touched. It has a grounded plug but the tremelo was never serviced so it has the squeaking/ticking sound. I love the way it sounds clean but I cannot get a good dirt sound with a pedal. It sounds very raspy with everything I have tried (mostly pedals on the cheaper end). The closest I got was with an Ibanez TS7 on the normal side altough I felt the pedal let too much of the dry guitar signal in. It was too raspy on the Trem/Rev side though. Think distortion pedal straight into the board raspy. I believe it has all the original tubes. I did look inside and it looks to be as expected with my limited knowledge. The yellow green death caps looks great with no swelling. One other issue I've had lately is that when I first fire it up the reverb is very weak or not very deep. After it warms up for about 10 minutes it gets drippy. Minus the reverb issue does this seem like a regular DR. I've seen a lot about people having trouble finding a good drive for these but do you have to just settle for some raspy to get the glorious cleans? I know this is all over the place but feel free to weigh in. Having this for 10 years and hardly playing it seems like a waste. I want to get this figured out or move it on to someone that will play it. Thanks.

 
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HotBluePlates

Member
Messages
9,731
I bought a '78 Deluxe Reverb ... I cannot get a good dirt sound with a pedal. It sounds very raspy with everything I have tried (mostly pedals on the cheaper end). The closest I got was with an Ibanez TS7 on the Bassman side ...
There is no "Bassman side" on an original silverface Deluxe Reverb. That's the "Normal" channel, and is the right one to be using with dirt pedals, unless you remove the bright cap on the Vibrato channel.

.... The yellow green death caps looks great with no swelling. ...
That is something that cannot be visually checked (unless of course the cap has exploded).
 

Stormin

Tele's and Plexis
Staff member
Gold Supporting Member
Messages
4,123
I bought a '78 Deluxe Reverb on here in 2011. It looks like it could be in a museum. I don't think it has ever been touched. It has a grounded plug but the tremelo was never serviced so it has the squeaking/ticking sound. I love the way it sounds clean but I cannot get a good dirt sound with a pedal. It sounds very raspy with everything I have tried (mostly pedals on the cheaper end). The closest I got was with an Ibanez TS7 on the Bassman side altough I felt the pedal let too much of the dry guitar signal in. It was too raspy on the Trem/Rev side though. Think distortion pedal straight into the board raspy. I believe it has all the original tubes. I did look inside and it looks to be as expected with my limited knowledge. The yellow green death caps looks great with no swelling. One other issue I've had lately is that when I first fire it up the reverb is very weak or not very deep. After it warms up for about 10 minutes it gets drippy. Minus the reverb issue does this seem like a regular DR. I've seen a lot about people having trouble finding a good drive for these but do you have to just settle for some raspy to get the glorious cleans? I know this is all over the place but feel free to weigh in. Having this for 10 years and hardly playing it seems like a waste. I want to get this figured out or move it on to someone that will play it. Thanks.

I have a ‘71 Deluxe Reverb and my experience has not been like yours at all. My amp is an absolute monster with a Fulltone OCD in front.

IMHO, you need to do 2 minor things to reclaim your amp: have it serviced by a good tech (filter caps, etc) and clip the damn bright cap. We’re talking like $100-$150 bucks, depending on prices in your area. It’ll be a total game changer.

If you wanna go further than that, then swap out the speaker for an efficient ceramic. I use a Celestion Vintage 30.
 

rednoise

Member
Messages
641
I bought a '78 Deluxe Reverb on here in 2011. It looks like it could be in a museum. I don't think it has ever been touched. It has a grounded plug but the tremelo was never serviced so it has the squeaking/ticking sound. I love the way it sounds clean but I cannot get a good dirt sound with a pedal. It sounds very raspy with everything I have tried (mostly pedals on the cheaper end). The closest I got was with an Ibanez TS7 on the Bassman side altough I felt the pedal let too much of the dry guitar signal in. It was too raspy on the Trem/Rev side though. Think distortion pedal straight into the board raspy. I believe it has all the original tubes. I did look inside and it looks to be as expected with my limited knowledge. The yellow green death caps looks great with no swelling. One other issue I've had lately is that when I first fire it up the reverb is very weak or not very deep. After it warms up for about 10 minutes it gets drippy. Minus the reverb issue does this seem like a regular DR. I've seen a lot about people having trouble finding a good drive for these but do you have to just settle for some raspy to get the glorious cleans? I know this is all over the place but feel free to weigh in. Having this for 10 years and hardly playing it seems like a waste. I want to get this figured out or move it on to someone that will play it. Thanks.
"Drippy"??
 

zombiwoof

Supporting Member
Messages
5,761
"Bassman Side"?.
Try running both the treble and bass controls down low, this brings up the fixed mids in relation, and allows you to crank the amp more. This works on most if not all Fenders with no mids pot. I often run the bass completely off, and the treble 1-3.
Al
 

tonedover

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
5,255
i find i prefer increasing the “low” mids instead of the standard hump into fenders

the overrated special has a 500k control that really scratches that itch for me. one of the few tubescreamer variants i like. ymmv
 

Wyatt Martin

Member
Messages
2,188
I bought a '78 Deluxe Reverb on here in 2011. It looks like it could be in a museum. I don't think it has ever been touched. It has a grounded plug but the tremelo was never serviced so it has the squeaking/ticking sound. I love the way it sounds clean but I cannot get a good dirt sound with a pedal. It sounds very raspy with everything I have tried (mostly pedals on the cheaper end). The closest I got was with an Ibanez TS7 on the normal side altough I felt the pedal let too much of the dry guitar signal in. It was too raspy on the Trem/Rev side though. Think distortion pedal straight into the board raspy. I believe it has all the original tubes. I did look inside and it looks to be as expected with my limited knowledge. The yellow green death caps looks great with no swelling. One other issue I've had lately is that when I first fire it up the reverb is very weak or not very deep. After it warms up for about 10 minutes it gets drippy. Minus the reverb issue does this seem like a regular DR. I've seen a lot about people having trouble finding a good drive for these but do you have to just settle for some raspy to get the glorious cleans? I know this is all over the place but feel free to weigh in. Having this for 10 years and hardly playing it seems like a waste. I want to get this figured out or move it on to someone that will play it. Thanks.

Move it on.

I have a twin reverb and I can echo your sentiments in regards to drive pedals into that amp as well. I went down about every rabbit hole I could reasonably afford, new tubes, pulling tubes, hot bias, cold bias and 3 different different speaker swaps, "magic sixes" and every other eq combination under the sun and then add 7 different drive pedals, some with a mid hump, some with a flatter eq. I even threw a Boss 7 band eq and 10 band MXR eq at it but once all the smoke cleared there was some minor improvements but nowhere near what I deemed as an inspirational tone. I think I even thought one day I would turn it on and all would be good but it never happens.

I wanted so bad to love that amp but it just wasn't in the cards. I also kept that amp around for over 10 years occasionally digging it out of my closet thinking I was going to win the battle but after about an hour of tweaking I still fall flat.
 

billboneys

Supporting Member
Messages
758
Move it on.

I have a twin reverb and I can echo your sentiments in regards to drive pedals into that amp as well. I went down about every rabbit hole I could reasonably afford, new tubes, pulling tubes, hot bias, cold bias and 3 different different speaker swaps, "magic sixes" and every other eq combination under the sun and then add 7 different drive pedals, some with a mid hump, some with a flatter eq. I even threw a Boss 7 band eq and 10 band MXR eq at it but once all the smoke cleared there was some minor improvements but nowhere near what I deemed as an inspirational tone. I think I even thought one day I would turn it on and all would be good but it never happens.

I wanted so bad to love that amp but it just wasn't in the cards. I also kept that amp around for over 10 years occasionally digging it out of my closet thinking I was going to win the battle but after about an hour of tweaking I still fall flat.
Thanks for the advice. I think this is what I was looking for. I don’t want to spend a bunch of money on it to find out that it’s still not going to get there.
 
Messages
195
The first thing I would do absolutely is have someone with a little amp knowledge take a look at the amp. Something as simple as the bias being off could make a huge difference in its tone and how it takes pedals.

That amp should be a great pedal platform. I’ve never owned one (I do have a tweed deluxe but that’s a completely different animal) but I’ve heard guys get great flexible sounds out of them with a couple pedals. But if you take it to get fixed and the guy tells you that’s what a SFDR should sound like and you still don’t like it, you might wanna look into getting another amp. And get a amp that excels in the type of tone you’re trying to get out your DR
 

zwiefldraader

Member
Messages
857
I know it sounds pretty wired, but... Could it somehow be, the original speaker hasn't really broken-in, yet?
Another 100 hours playing it loud could change things dramatically for the better then - after having a tech solved the reverb issue.
 

HeavyCream

Member
Messages
3,204
Dude, a ‘70’s Deluxe Reverb is a killer amp. I would spend some time researching what one is supposed to sound like, with/without pedals. I have no doubt getting a service will improve its tone/response. Even if you don’t end up liking it, you’ll be able to get more for it if it’s had a recent service by a good tech.
 
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nic'o'caster

Member
Messages
1,104
Any Bluesbreaker type of circuit pedal should work. The pedals I liked the most with my DRRI were : KOT, Monsterpiece STUD (klone with more gain on tap), Fuzz Face, but almost any dirt pedal work in a Deluxe Reverb...

When I read 'raspy' I immediately thought of a speaker change, but not with a Celestion which will change too much your clean sound. I prefer an Emi GA-SC64 or a Jupiter 12LC that will retain excellent Fender cleans but that will transform your DR in a rock machine if you will !
 




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