Help with Louis Electric KR12

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by lgehrig4, Mar 14, 2008.

  1. lgehrig4

    lgehrig4 Silver Supporting Member

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    I received a used 1x12 today and the tubes were removed and I'm not quite sure where the rectifier goes. The three preamps are the right and the sockets for the larger bottles on the left. I'm assuming the two EL34s are on the far left followed by the rectifier, but I don't want to take the chance.

    Before anyone tells me to call him, I already did but he is probably closed and I really want to hear this thing tonight :RoCkIn
     
  2. quinnamps

    quinnamps Member

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    I cannot say 100% sure but in most every amp say Fenders, the rectifier is the tube farthest to the left when looking at the rear. Almost certainly true of your amp but again I could be wrong....
     
  3. pm81

    pm81 Member

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  4. JP59

    JP59 Supporting Member

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    Looking at the back of your amp from left to right, the first tube would be the rectifier followed by the two EL34's....
     
  5. lgehrig4

    lgehrig4 Silver Supporting Member

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    Thank you and thank you! This definitely helps
     
  6. davebc

    davebc Member

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    Pauls photo should clear it up for you.
    So, whatya think?
    Don't be a-scared to crank that Master Volume up! :dude
    Wait until you hear the versatility of those channels with the gain stages using the master volume and the quarter inch jack! I'm always discovering new tones.
     
  7. lgehrig4

    lgehrig4 Silver Supporting Member

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    Haven't tried it yet. She's warming up while I make dinner. I'll only get to test it at lower volumes until tomorrow and I'll report back.
     
  8. lgehrig4

    lgehrig4 Silver Supporting Member

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    Ok, I was going to wait until tomorrow to post, but I think somethings not right. It sounds good, but not great and I've purchased enough amps and read enough reviews to get a good idea of what to expect.

    First off I can get AC/DC (Problem Child tones) with an LP plugged into the clean channel turned up to 5 and I thought this channel was supposed to stay pretty clean?

    Next, the overdrive is a little more fuzzy/buzzy than descibed here on the board. Also, I've heard people say it's like having a Fender and Marshall in one. To me the tone is all Marshall.

    Lastly, I've read that the low end is tight and piano like. That is not the case here.


    That said, it still sounds good, but not nearly as good as has been discussed here. Even TAG said the cleans were up there with his Cowtipper. I have a Cowtipper and right now this one isn't even close so I know something is wrong.

    Any suggestions? I could probably take a ride to NJ and have Louis take a look at it if his is available, but in the meantime I would like to try some things myself. Would this amp need to be biased if installed new EL34's? If so, can anyone describe how to bias this amp?
     
  9. K-man

    K-man Member

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    If you were looking for clean Cowtipper/Blackface tones I think you bought the wrong amp. The KR12 is definately more on the Tweed side of cleans.

    That said, what did you have the master volume set at? Try turning the master up and the volume down to get more headroom. Also if your amp has the negative feedback control located on the bottom of the chassis, adjusting that could get you a little more headroom as well.

    If you installed new tubes, it would be a good idea to check the bias. I haven't had to do it on mine yet, so I would suggest calling Lou. There's probably a bias pot inside somewhere.
     
  10. lgehrig4

    lgehrig4 Silver Supporting Member

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    I was expecting tweed and for reference I once owned a Tweed Deluxe clone and Bassman LTD. I had the master in different positions, from 3 to 9. I do need to play around more though. I didn't have much time to mess with it.

    There is one more thing I forgot to mention that leads me to believe I could use some new tubes. The E,B and G strings have a strange ghost note type thing happening when I play them above the 12th fret while plugged into input 1 of the normal channel. It's more obvious when bending.
     
  11. K-man

    K-man Member

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    The KR-12 is based on a Tweed Twin, so it should have way more headroom than a Tweed Deluxe. I think you do have a tube problem. Also check for that negative feedback control. It will be a knob on the underside of the chassis, right around the middle of the amp.
     
  12. jumpnblues

    jumpnblues Member

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    I have the KR-10/12 and it has great lows. Mine has a 6L6 power section though. It started life as an EL-34 amp but I wanted to experiment and Lou is very flexible about doing that. I really liked the EL-34s but liked the 6L6s just slightly better...a little smoother in the top end, more Fender-like vs Marshall-like. You do have to keep in mind these amps are loosely based on tweeds. So are Marshalls, therefore the tones are going to be somewhat related. The cleans are much more tweed vs blackface. I do find you have to push the amp to get the best tones out of it. I play mine with the master dimed, the channel volume on about 5 1/2, and I use the second gain stage. Since I tend to play fairly clean with just enough edge to add (relatively) clean sustain. It can get very loud for 40 watts and has great headroom if needed. I'm head-over-heels in love with mine. I sold a superb sounding Victoria Pro with Weber 15A150 to order another Louis Electric amp (Tremblelux). I've just not played through anything I like as much. But that's my ears and not yours. It's quite possible the KR-12 may just not be your cup of tea. Comparing it to a Bruno of any kind is apples and oranges. It's not like any Bruno, which are indeed excellent amps, by the way.
    All that said, it does sound like something is amiss with your KR-12 as they have great lows for just 1x12" speaker, but not the lows of, say, a blackface Super Reverb or Twin Reverb. Once again, tweeds (with the exception of Bassmans and Twins) are not known for big lows like the blackface amps are, but their lows are more than adequate.
    Anyway, call Lou Rosano. He's a great guy and extremely knowledgeable. And, yes, the tube to the far left is the rectifier, the next 2 are power tubes and the last 3 to the right are preamp tubes.


    Tom
     
  13. lgehrig4

    lgehrig4 Silver Supporting Member

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    K-man, I was using the Tweed Deluxe for reference as to Tweed tone, but not necessarily the headroom.

    Jumpnblues, I know the Bruno is different. I was referring to another Bruno lover who hears the amp the way I do and considered the K12 to be close in regards to sound quality. Since mine wasn't close and we agree on the Bruno I was thinking that something was wrong.

    To be honest this happened to me when I first got my Emerald Pro. Just didn't sound as I expected from the start. After messing around with the controls it ha become one of my keepers and oldest in my collection. I think the master threw me off because I have been playing my Constellation a lot as of late. I don't think there's a problem with the amp, but I'm sure it wouldn't hurt to throw in some new tubes.

    I would definitely like to try 6L6's since I have the Marshall thing covered and would like it to lean more on the Fender side. Is it just a matter of a bias adjustment or would Louis have to change anything to accommodate them? I thought I read this amp can accept different tubes?
     
  14. clarkram

    clarkram Member

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    I've only had my KR12 for a couple of days, but you should try the master wide open and then try and balance w/volume control for cleans. I haven't tried humbuckers yet, but P90s will have some breakup as you dig in, even in clean mode.

    My Suhr T holds the cleans together very well.

    I think you will find the bias pot in about the middle of the chassis, a little blue bias pot is there.

    Let us know how it turns out.
     
  15. davebc

    davebc Member

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    You HAVE to run the master volume higher. It's absolutely necessary, or the amp will sound buzzy and fuzzy.
    You know the routine, run the Master on 10 or 12,(actually 11 1/2 seems to be a sweet spot) gradually bring up the regular volume.
    It's normal for this amp to be very fat and singing with a Les Paul in the clean channel if cranked up.
    As was also mentioned, make sure the negative feedback(beneath the chassie) loop is set to the tighter/cleaner.
    Finally give a Lou a call. It takes all his amps very personally. He'll ABSOLUTELY make sure your 1000% satisfied.
    The bias on one of my KR's was way off and sounded horrible, Lou took tweeked it in, and it needed tubes.

    The KR12 is a unique animal. The very first time I plugged into my new KR10-12, with the updated master volume circuit, all my familar tones had moved on the dials from where I was used to finding them. The amp responded differently which really threw me at first. So, I rolled my sleeves and started experimenting, AND BANG! It's now months later and I'm still calling Lou raving about all these absolutely wicked tones I'm discovering all over the dial.
    And yes, with master wide open the lows are like getting hit in the face with a grand piano(with my Strats)

    Want to have religeous experience? Run both volumes on 10, plug that quarter inch jack in the Normal channel 2! :drool :AOK :dude
     
  16. lgehrig4

    lgehrig4 Silver Supporting Member

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    Exactly. I was thinking that after I read a few replies. Actually, last night I cracked open the master and put the volume up to about 2 and got some beautiful low volume cleans with my strat. It was the sound I was expecting when I first tried it.

    As far as biasing, can anyone describe where I would connect the multimeter? I've biased a few amps, but it was different each time and I don't know enough to figure it out. Just know how NOT to get electrocuted.
     
  17. lgehrig4

    lgehrig4 Silver Supporting Member

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    Just spoke to Louis. Just like everyone says, he's a real nice guy. According to what I told him he suggested that I had a microphonic preamp and the ghost noted were due to the Celestion. I just happened to have 3 NOS Tesla 12ax7s so I popped them in and heard an immediate improvement.

    After I finished playing I heard this vibrating coming from the back of the amp (while master and volume were off) and it turned out to be the power tubes. When I touched them with the pick it stopped and when I let go the vibration started up again slowly. I could also tap them to start the vibration going as well.

    He also explained to me how to properly bias the amp and since I don;t want to take a soldiering iron to this myself I will either get a professional or find one of the bias probes that fit into the sockets.

    so........

    .........cam anyone recommend a good bias probe?
     
  18. matte

    matte Senior Member

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    one man's meat is another man's poison. when louis built my amp, i was adamant about having my amp under-filtered (in order to maximize side bands/ghost notes).
     
  19. lgehrig4

    lgehrig4 Silver Supporting Member

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    I hear you Matte, but I'm sure my amp is not up to par. I do all my buying based on the opinions of players here and listening to clips and I've never been disappointed. I've already heard much improvement by changing the preamps. I have EL34's, but I need a bias probe first.

    I guarantee if you heard it you would agree. I've had over 30 amps during the past 2yrs and I currently own a Constellation, Modena 90, SLO, Emerald Pro, Intruder, Cowtipper & CCB Kingston 18 and I am confident that this amp should be in that category. Just needs a little tune up.

    I think part of my concern was the way it was packed for shipment. Showed a total lack of care on the sellers part and that immediately make me wonder how the amp was treated while in his hands.

    Louis mentioned his new master volume and that sounds like a nice upgrade to me. He's not too far from me so I'll probably bring it over to him down the road.
     
  20. davebc

    davebc Member

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    Lou built the amp. He knows these amps better than anyone on the planet. If you want the amp perfectly, and I mean perfectly, suited to your individual taste, have Lou do the work.
    Why trust it to anyone else? Ferrari's go to Ferrari technicians for servicing. You have a Ferrari.
     

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