Route 66 - any fans?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by 62Tele, Oct 17, 2008.

  1. 62Tele

    62Tele Supporting Member

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    I know this amp has had some great reviews, just curious who's bought one and kept using it and for what.
     
  2. fixed

    fixed Member

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    I LOVE this amp! I use it primarily to play Hendrix/BoG stuff in a cover band. One thing to watch out for: it is incredibly loud and I believe it's underrated at 32 watts. I have to use an attenuator unless I'm playing outside, and even then it could probably use one. My gig last week was a strat through a few pedals into a Route 66, all knobs on 12, with the Z Airbrake on 4.
     
  3. gearitis

    gearitis Gold Supporting Member

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    I had one and loved it! For some stupid reason I sold it to buy something else that is probably long gone. I should have kept the 66.
     
  4. iggs

    iggs Member

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    Phenomenal amp ... like most others in Dr. Z lineup. It does have it's own sound and it does not fall under the usual Marshall/Fender/Vox description. A lot of people associate it with JTM45 sound mostly due to use of KT66 tubes but the front end is completely different and the amp sounds and reacts quite a bit different from a Marshall especially when it comes to pedals since the EF86 does not initially compress nearly as much as a 12AX7 when hit hard with high signal level.

    I got mine after 5 min demo at the store and kept it since. See my sig for type of music, I did get the amp after we completed the album (unfortunately) so there's none of it on the record. I am playing it live on the EDGE 102.1 clip.

    I use ton of pedals and the amp works really well with pretty much anything you throw in the front. The key to that is the EF86 front-end that is set up differently then most EF86 based pre-amps.

    The amp is very responsive to picking dynamics and compresses beautifully when pushed hard. There's that sweet point on the volume dial when it just starts to saturate and the output tube compression has kicked in so no matter how hard you hit it in the front with OD, boost or fuzz, there's not much apparent change in volume, just more saturation and compression without ever becoming flabby or farting out.

    It is loud and has plenty of headroom (up to around noon on the dial) but it's not a spanky Fender clean. Cleans are nice and thick with plenty of tight lows and highs which are never shrill or ear-piercing. The ultra-linear output section coupled with the KT66 yields quite a linear EQ response and the whole amp is voiced with plenty of mids to cut through any cluttered mix.

    It works great with an attenuator (I use a Hot Plate) but it really "breathes" much better without one.

    Because of the straightforward design, almost any tube change will yield a dramatic difference in sound and performance which is amazing since you can tailor it to your wants and needs. I "invested" in some NOS EF86, 12AX7 (PI) and rectifier tubes and it was worth every penny. The damn thing just sounded better and better.

    It's built like a tank with overspec'd transformers and ultra-neat wiring inside.

    I run it through my stock Dr. Z Z-Best 2x12 and it's a match made in heaven.

    I know Dr. Z is not hyped as much as some other booteek brands around here and does not carry the same bragging rights when it comes down to it but I think it's one of the best amps currently made and one of the best amps ever designed and made. Even more so because it's built from the ground up around the KT66 tube and paired with an original front-end design and is not just another take on a existing platform. Even though sound and tone are completely subjective, nobody with half and ear can dispute that Route 66 is an amazing amp whether it's to their personal liking or not.
     
  5. Dave LaP

    Dave LaP Member

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    I loved mine. Ran 2 in stereo for a while.

    A very cool and unique amp.
     
  6. Anthony Gring

    Anthony Gring Silver Supporting Member

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    I gigged it for about five years. Ran it as a semi-clean platform and used pedals to keep volume manageable. It replaced a Fender Bassman head. No, it is NOT spanky Fender clean. It has Muscle! Really a fantastic amp. It is LOUD! Really the main reason I sold it was because of my volume constraints in church. That and we weren't doing any gigs elsewhere ( drummer broke his leg) that I could've used it at. But man... Great Amp. And I do Miss IT!
     
  7. 62Tele

    62Tele Supporting Member

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    Thanks guys. What I'm looking for is something a little different to run with and Allen 40 watt combo (which is getting a couple of blackface mods soon - but it's a great amp). I'm considering a wet/dry setup and it sounds like this might be a good choice for the dry side. Wish they made a combo version, but that won't stop me from snagging one. Trying to find the most versatile amp set I can get.

    What would you guys think this amp is NOT suited for?
     
  8. iggs

    iggs Member

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    It's not suited for the girlie-man player!!!
     
  9. 62Tele

    62Tele Supporting Member

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    Well it looks like we've linked two posts!
     
  10. Tasweigan

    Tasweigan Member

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    I've had mine and gigged it every week for almost 6 years. I still look forward to playing it every gig.
    Iggs summed it up beautifully so I'll just add i play mostly rock with humbuckers and some more alternative, pop singer/songwriter stuff.
    I also play in some cover bands and it does everything brilliantly.

    In regards to what it doesn't do, it doesn't do that ultra glassy, chimey type clean tone, it's more smokey, and I like that term before "muscle".
    I say if other great amps are a nice larger, the Route 66 is a thick creamy pint of Guinness.

    This amp responds wonderfully to good boosts (I use an Ulbrick Megalodon) and responds really well to fuzz and higher gain pedals too.
    If you are looking for late 60's to 70's type rock tones, this amp kills it.
    But it's a great blues amp too and a great jazz playing friend of mine has borrowed it with fantastic results.
    Never harsh, always sits wonderfully in a mix, great live voicing.
    Highly recommended from me.

    Here's two of my tunes, the first is the amp workin' hard, aggressive tone, no pedals.
    The second is cleaner for comparison with some trem in the intro, no other pedals.
    http://www.broadjam.com/player/play...502FE584464DB2E98186D4058BB4&sessionINDEX=182

    http://www.broadjam.com/player/play...502FE584464DB2E98186D4058BB4&sessionINDEX=182
     

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