Help me fine tune my Swart STR.

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by DavidH, Feb 28, 2009.

  1. DavidH

    DavidH Member

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    Been doing a bit of speaker and tube tweaking lately, i have my other 2 amps, a CJ11 and Mojave Coyote sounding fantastic, but i think my STR still has room for improvement.

    It's an original STR, stock except for a GE 6v6 and 5y3. I'm happy as larry with the way it breaks up, and the voicing, the issue i have is with the sound/feel of the cab.

    I'll explain, the small lightweight pine cab has this tubby sound, kind of like tapping on a tupaware tub on the attack of notes and on muted notes. I hear it in the clips of the STR-tweed too. I think it could sound and feel better if it could be dialed out. Running it through other cabs it goes away, so it seems to be the cab and/or speaker.

    It's much less noticeable with the natural compression and extra low end thump of my Collings CL, but with my 290 it's quite noticeable. It feels like the amp is almost too transparent (it is very) with not quite enough colouration to cover that sound. (am i making any sense?:NUTS)

    Here's the thing, i wonder if there's a different speaker there's worth trying, with more of it's own colour, or if it's worth doing something to the cab (adding mass somehow?) to try and dial this out. It has a Mojo BV-30H which is like a G12-H30, it needs at least the low end and volume of that speaker so a greenback is out i think, and a celestion blue won't fit. Maybe a heritage G12-H or a V30?

    Any tips or tricks for changing the sound of a small, lightweight sounding cab?

    I know i just made it sound terrible, it's actually a great sounding amp, it has a great direct feel, breaks up in a wondeful way and you can pick out the most balanced chords ever, i just think it could be even better without this plasticky attack thing going on, makes it sound small and it's capable of bigger sounds than that through different cabs. I want to keep it in the small cab though, it's really convinient for the living room and looks cool.

    Any and all thoughts welcome.

    Cheers, David.
     
  2. DavidH

    DavidH Member

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    OK scratch that! :rotflmao

    It just needed a fatter, hotter 12ax7 in V1. That's certainly brought it to life. I forgot the vintage mullard in there wasn't exactly the hottest 12ax7, didn't think it would make that much difference though. I've put a GT 12ax7 in V1 which i presume is a JJ, it's put some hair on the bass when you dig in, and kind of woolied it up, warmer, fatter. Taken away that tubby clean attack thing on the bass notes i was on about.

    It can sound a bit vox now somehow too, with the 290 bridge pup it's get's those occasional spitty frizzles on hard bass notes when you dig, and the crunchy chime, sounds cool.

    Anyways, i realise i'm probably talking to myself but hey. A 5Y3 is definately the way to go though, with the GE 6v6 and the hotter tube in V1 it's night and day from what it was originally- warm, woolly, barking, fuzzy, crunchy goodness! :RoCkIn Ooh yeah!
     
    Last edited: Feb 28, 2009
  3. mc2

    mc2 Member

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    Lots of folk seem to put a G12H30 in their Swarts vs the Greenback/derivatives. before doing that, I'd make sure there's been enough break-in time for the speaker. My AST has sweetened up with playing. It's interesting that a simple 12ax7 tube swap turned you around that much. Congrats!
     
  4. DavidH

    DavidH Member

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    Yeah it's wierd because i've been feeding it boosts, thinking that would emulate a hotter V1, so i don't know. The new tube is obviously darker and hotter so it's making the whole thing break up more in the bass.

    The speaker is well broken in by now, it's a year old and i play it most days.

    edit; i should make it clear, i've been playing this amp a lot since i got it last year, if i didn't think it was fantastic it would have gone by now, i'd have got bored and moved on. I just need to go through that experimentation process with amps after a while. I think when you've listened to an amp for a while you pick up on things that you might want to change, plus simply getting bored of the same sound after a while. Tube are an easy way to tune this amp, it seems to respond really well to tube swaps.
     
    Last edited: Feb 28, 2009
  5. thesjkexperienc

    thesjkexperienc ^^^ I made this guitar^^^ Supporting Member

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    Jul 21, 2008
    Location:
    Colorado mountains
    I have the tweed version and I have an old GE in V1 and a new Tung-Sol in V2 and an old RCA in V3 and an old coke bottle Marconi 6V6 and an old GE GZ-34. Tone to die for!
     

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