Honest, reliable, knowlegable Amp Tech needed Chicago JCM 800

Discussion in 'Amps/Cabs Tech Corner: Amplifier, Cab & Speakers' started by Groovey Records, Feb 13, 2008.


  1. Groovey Records

    Groovey Records Member

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    Honest, reliable, knowlegable Amp Tech needed in Chicago-land area.
    Early JCM 800 amp has lo high channel imbalance and pot noise.

    Rookie needs honest and reliable assesment and repair

    Help a brother out

    Regards

    Groovey Records
     
  2. hipfan

    hipfan Member

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    Tim Schroeder. Does great guitar building and repair, but his focus now is more on the amp side of things. He's fixed and modded a couple of amps for me, and he built a couple of amps that Wilco is now using. Located right next to Make'n Music in the City. He's as honest and reliable as they come.

    www.schroederguitarrepair.com
     
  3. Swarty

    Swarty Member

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    If Eddie Schaeffer ever decides to quit being a fishing guide in northern WI and come home to Cicero....
     
  4. yoyohomieg5432

    yoyohomieg5432 Member

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    i live in aurora, which is an hour from chicago. i would prefer not to have to drive that far, but if he is the best i would.

    does Schroeder have that little building right next to make n music? i remember seeing a building with a couple guys working on amps right next to the place.


    ps. groovey made this thread for me, thanks.
     
  5. dkals

    dkals Member

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    You live in Aurora. Have you tried calling Hix brothers to see if they can work on it? They are on the south side of the mall. http://www.hixbrosmusic.com/ It may save you a long drive. I have seen other amps in their shop that they have worked on. Mesa's & Orange.
     
  6. yoyohomieg5432

    yoyohomieg5432 Member

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    do they have good techs? i always assumed that chained guitar stores would just pick up average joe's for techs.

    have u ever used them before?
     
  7. HoboMan

    HoboMan Silver Supporting Member

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  8. yoyohomieg5432

    yoyohomieg5432 Member

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    this place is actually much closer to me than chicago.

    is $95/hr a reasonable price? it seems on the high side, but then again ive never been to an amp tech before.

    ill have to give these guys a call.
     
  9. teleman55

    teleman55 Member

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    minstrel music
    niles, il.
     
  10. dkals

    dkals Member

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    Sorry about not getting back. I have used Hix brothers to set up my guitars. I have heard of britishaudioservice. And I know there is another amp repair business in Orland Park. If I can remember or find the name I will post it.

    Give Hix brothers a call. They are good guys.
     
  11. yoyohomieg5432

    yoyohomieg5432 Member

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    well, i decided on schroeder's. i took it there about 2 weeks ago and it's been with them since.

    tom schroeder hasnt been there, but he has a group of younger guys that work there.

    he called me up a couple days ago and said that the high input channel sounds about normal to him. he agreed that it doesnt sound 'great' but, he thinks that may be because the low input channel sounds so good. he told me on the phone the low input channel is one of the best he's ever heard, very warm, vibrant, etc. and i agree with him. i'm just not happy with how trebly and lifeless the high input channel sounded.

    i told him about the problem i get sometimes where teh volume just drops like halfway after i fiddle with the knobs, and that i can't get the volume to go back up unless i turn the amp off and bakc on. he said that hasnt happened to him yet. it only seems to happen sometimes. figures it doesn't happen when its in the repair shop.

    he changed the presence pot which i mentioned made a real loud thundery noise whenever i turned it. he said the new pot didn't make an improvement with the noise,a nd that the thundery sound is normal if you are turning the pot.

    so basically when we were on the phone, he hasnt found anhything wrong with it. all the connections look good, voltages, etc.

    he offered to let schroeder look at it when he returns this weekend, and i said that i'll wait to pick it up until after he takes a look at it. so i guess im waiting for another call here soon.

    do you think this tech is correct in his answers to me?
     
  12. VikingAmps

    VikingAmps Member

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    I don't think those are very satisfying answers, I would wait for the main man to get back and look at it.
     
  13. 909one

    909one Member

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    Hey, I live about five mins away from Schroeder. I haven't taken my amp in there yet, but I have gotten my guitars set up there. Tim runs a really tight ship. He wouldn't hire anyone that doesn't know what he's doing. I have a friend that used to work there doing (not doing tech stuff) and he said that Tim is very nit picky about everything, which might not be a good thing when you are working for him, but when you are getting your gear fixed, thats a great thing IMO.
    So, yeah, have Tim look at it, but isn't it Murphy's Law where you can never get your stuff to *not* work the way its supposed to when you bring it into the tech?

    Someone else mentioned Minstrel Music in Niles, I have gotten stuff fixed there, they are good, but unless you like waiting for 6-8 weeks to get your stuff fixed, don't bother.
     
  14. Groovey Records

    Groovey Records Member

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    +1 on waiting for Tim make sure you talk to him yourself and how you understand what the techs saying to you but could he take the time to check whats troubling you.

    It Sounds Like to duplicate your intermitent problem they may need to stress the amp a little. Is the Volume drop happening on both channels?

    GrooVey Records
     
  15. yoyohomieg5432

    yoyohomieg5432 Member

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    it was only happening when i was on the high input channel, which sounds terrible anyway.

    i told him that i always have the master and pre amp volumes cranked to 10 and thats when it has done it for me, and maybe thats why it's not doing it for him.

    it's probably too loud to crank it all the way up in the repair shop, so he may not hear it for himself.
    --------

    btw, he just called again like an hour ago.

    he said once again that everything looks fine and that there has been some parts inside the amp that have been changed, but it's just normal amp maintenance. he said he'll call me again on monday after schroeder's looked at it.

    he also mentioned possibly modding the amp, i'm somewhat interested in getting the high input modded to get more gain. it only seems to get enough gain for an overdriven sound. i want enough gain for 80's rock.

    i might decline and try an sd-1 first. this would probably save a couple hundred, and if i like it i wont have modden a classic amp.
     
  16. i think it is really great that the tech has taken the time to keep you abreast of what is happening. every tech i have seen kind of leaves you in the dark. he gave you his opinion and is letting you make the decisions if you want schroeder to look at it. i have been to their shop and those guys really know what is up.
     
  17. rob2001

    rob2001 Member

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    My 800 is dead quiet when turning any knob. Thunderous noise isn't normal.

    But i'll say maybe the high input is normal but you just don't like it. The high and low are very different for sure. I know exactly what you mean when you say how nice and fat the low input is.

    On the other hand, the high can sound incredible when used as it was meant to be used, which is usually louder than most can deal with in a practical sense. Unless your in a big room with a hard hitting drummer you'll probably never get it loud enough to sound good.

    I record a lot with mine and use both channels as needed. The settings are very different between the two channels. With the low input I generally turn the bass to about noon and I can add more treble and presence. The high needs more bass, with presence and treble turned down below noon. I keep the mids about the same with both.

    Now, about the thin tone on the high, These amps have treble peaking circuits (bright caps) that kick in as the preamp is turned down. The only way to avoid the bright caps from kicking in is to dime the gain, (thats a lot of gain) or lots of guys "clip" or unsolder the caps I refer to. It's a simple, reversible mod that allows for fatter tones at low volumes on the high input.

    Otherwise I've had great tones before doing the bright cap mod with the high running the preamp and master at 6. Thats pretty loud but I do play with a hard hitting drummer and that sits pretty nicely. Also, you can experiment with different preamp tubes for varied tones and gain response. I have some RFT's for higher gain and some other tubes, (I forget the numbers) for lower gain.

    Since your amp is already at the shop, wait till the main man is back and talk to him about doing the bright cap mod. It's very simple so it shouldn't cost much. I did mine myself but I would rather have had a tech do it.

    Weather you do the cap mod or not, i'll say this.... It took me literally a year to really get to know my 800 and how to get at all the
    great tones it has. Have dude give it a clean bill of health and then spend lots of time experimenting with different settings.

    If it ends up you still don't like the high input, just use the low with a good OD and you'll be set. I'm all typed out now, good luck with the amp.:AOK
     
  18. Groovey Records

    Groovey Records Member

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    Yeah I agree with everything Rob said. When you talk Tim emphasize the Volume drop being intermitent and also mention the advice you've received here on the TGP and how it's been an ongoing thread.

    Take your time( Tim won't steer you wrong)

    EnJoY ThE MuSiC
    GrooVey Records
     
  19. yoyohomieg5432

    yoyohomieg5432 Member

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    well, thats another problem. i dont know if you saw my post, but i said that i play with the amp completely dimed (both volumes). if i play on the low input channel dimed, it is very loud, and knocks stuff off the walls, and it sounds great. but if i hook into the high, the high input is noticiably quieter.

    i hear it should be the other way around.

    the high input channel cranked is unpleasant to me. extremely trebley even with the treble on 0,theres no fatness or life behind it IMO.
     

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