So what is the worst built tube amp and why?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by LaXu, Jun 15, 2019.

  1. Dig ?

    Dig ? Member

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    Ive seen some old gibson amp chasis that were famously bad. Classic 30 for reasons mentioned above.

    A lot of the cheaply constructed modern tube amps are just one “the drummer put it in the trunk” scenarios from total destruction. Cheap components and mass production methods are to blame.
     
    FbIsNotE and zenas like this.
  2. zenas

    zenas Member

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    My friend has a music shop and has to fix everything that comes through the door. A lot of that is cheap crap that took a hit like that.
    Pots mounted to a thin board with the shafts sticking out through the chassis, without being fastened to the chassis!
    I used to do the vintage stuff for him but now he does most of that to keep his sanity. I'd guess %90 of the amp work there is on pretty recent cheap amps from the big names.
     
    AndyBurns, Dig ? and davidespinosa like this.
  3. teefus

    teefus Silver Supporting Member

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    yep, the delta blues was the same board with a tremolo circuit board added. the c20 was similar too. a real mess to work on.
     
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  4. LaXu

    LaXu Member

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    That's what sparked this thread really. It's just bonkers to me. For those who have not seen it:

    [​IMG]

    Also what's everyone's feeling about Carr insides? They are by all accords great sounding amps but I don't know if I would be happy seeing more hot glue than an episode of Ru Paul's Drag Race inside a high end boutique amp.
     
    ScottR, yfeefy, QRSS and 4 others like this.
  5. DGA

    DGA Member

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    Those threads gave me many laughs.
     
  6. Telejester

    Telejester Member

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    Oh boy, that brings back plenty of bad memories. The C30 I once owned I couldn't get rid of quick enough, what a P.O.S
     
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  7. StompBoxBlues

    StompBoxBlues Member

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    When I did some mods on my Fender Hot Rod DeVille I was surprised to see also split pc boards, connected by ribbon cables. It didn’t inspire confidence either.
     
  8. 8len8

    8len8 Member

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    The original Fender Super Sonic 60. You look hard at the insides and wires break off the PCB. Sooo many cold and bad solder joints. I had 2 well known modders turn down requests to mod this amp because they had issues in the past with the thing just falling apart in their hands.
     
    Tuberattler likes this.
  9. G34RSLU7

    G34RSLU7 Member

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    never had that problem with mine, but the clean channel was broken or something, or maybe it just has a bad clean channel.
     
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  10. corbs

    corbs Supporting Member

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    :eek:

    There has to be a more efficient / reliable design. Wow.
     
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  11. davidespinosa

    davidespinosa Supporting Member

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    I love the Solen caps, but I could never buy one, because of the wiring. I have too much OCD !
     
  12. gldtp99

    gldtp99 Member

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    Like this ?

     
  13. FbIsNotE

    FbIsNotE Member

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    I don't know how they ever let that happen at Peavey!! Such a shame.

    I own a first gen Classic 50 and it has no trace of that kind of idiocy. It's been bullet proof since I bought it new in the early 90's.
     
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  14. sonofspy

    sonofspy Member

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    Sorry you're all wrong.

    The Seymour Duncan 100watt Convertible. 1x12 with built in fan.

    It was 67 pounds. ( I used a hand truck to move it around)

    Y'know the one with the plug in modules, built in attenuator,
    Pentode/triode switch.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Brilliant concept TERRIBLE execution. Broke down almost EVERY gig.
     
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  15. Hefalump

    Hefalump Member

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    WOW?!? That just does not make any sense.
     
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  16. oneblackened

    oneblackened Member

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    The worst build ones I've come across...
    • Bugera. The lowest quality you can buy from Smarvo. Just piss awful component and board quality.
    • Fender (Blues Jr, Bassbreaker, Hot Rod). Just... everything about these sucked. Thin, chintzy boards, under-rated resistors causing all kinds of failures, crappy sockets - and my personal favorite, board mounted pots with no connection to the chassis at all. Recipe for disaster, that one.
    • Peavey. Board quality is just terrible. On many of their higher end amps, they rivet the tube sockets in and board mount them - all while mounting components on the inaccessible side of the board.
     
    saltbird likes this.
  17. vintagefox

    vintagefox Member

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    Bugera, maybe? I hear they sound amazing, but it seems that every owner has a flaming amp story to tell.
     
  18. saltbird

    saltbird Member

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    Agreed, but that amplifier does sound good for the price.
     
  19. SAVEStheDAY

    SAVEStheDAY Member

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    I love these amps, but it's true, they're failure prone due to Ampeg's cost cutting. I've got both the VL502 and VL1002. I experienced the molex connector failure in the VL1002 while gigging a long time ago - luckily during the last song of the set. The VL502 has been solid for me, but it doesn't see a lot of use, and doesn't get cranked up.
     
    NorCal_Val likes this.
  20. gldtp99

    gldtp99 Member

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    Yeah, I bought a pop rivet gun so I could change Screen Grid resistors on the old 5150's.

    The PCB's seem flimsy, too.

    Still despite these quirks these amps seem to last a long time and lots of people like them.

    I agree about the Bugeras and the modern Fender amps you mentioned.

    I won't work on them.

    I refer them to other shops that are set up for those kind of amps and stock those kind of parts.

    To me they are just junk, even when brand new.
     

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