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Sweeten Traynor YCV40 clean channel? Speaker, tubes, EQ?

mindwave_21

Member
Messages
130
I've been getting fed up recently with my clean channel on my YCV40. It's got Tesla 6L6GC's and the high gain 12AX7's from Eurotubes as well as an Eminence Wizard in place of the Celestion 70/80. Playing a Tele and a Heritage H535.

My problems with the clean channel:
1. On the verge of break up (hard strumming, hard picked notes/double stops), I get this cardboardy, sterile, and unmusical break up when I get to about 2-2.5 on the volume. I don't mind the smaller headroom. In fact, I want to be in that saturation range at that lower volume, but the break up sounds like static coming through the Wizard...harsh and unpleasing harmonics.

2. This clean channel sounds great when I play under the saturation pt when I play by myself, but when I play with a band I get lost in the mix. EQ one way and it's harsh and tinny, EQ the other and it sounds like I have no high end at all and I have to turn up to about 3 to get this muddier beef with little string definition.

My Questions
1. Any suggestions in general on the EQ settings? Right now I have treble-3, bass-3, mids-6.5, presence-off (doesn't really seem to do anything to my amp), bright switch-off.

2. Suggestions on whether I should replace the speaker or get an extension cab? I was thinking maybe an Eminence Red Fang to replace the Wizard because I hear that Alnico has a smoother breakup. Also heard an extension 1x12 might help fillout the sound.

3. Suggestions on tube substitutions to try out?

4. Playing technique, calm the f***ck down and get used to the sounds, other sage advice ;)?

Sounds I'm looking for:
Something like this http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NNbgQ9vpmqw (simple rhythm strumming at 2 minutes)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Z8thvjtcSY (6 minutes in with the Tele, also cleaner at 8 minutes)
In general clean channel on the verge of breakup...I want to get this sound.
 

franksguitar

Member
Messages
3,683
Don't Traynors come with Sovteks and the Celestion gives it it's unique sound? Changing out the speaker and different tubes changes the amp's dynamic. I have a YCV20WR 15 watter class A and sounds great with the Celestion greenback
 

mindwave_21

Member
Messages
130
The YCV40WR comes with a Vintage 30, mine came with the crappy 70/80. The tubes were sovteks, but I've heard that the sound can only get better with more premium tubes. I agree that a speaker change could change this amp dramatically, which is why I was asking for suggestions.
 

studio_Anchor

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
43
I used to have YCV40 about 3 years ago. It was my first tube amp.
All I remember is that I hated the amp because clean channel was useless playing live. My solution was to put in Eminence Swamp Thang speaker in it. You will get so much more volume and headroom that sound pours out at volume 0 (seriously) I also remember that I liked clean channel so much that I stopped using dirty channel and used Fulltone OCD on clean channel. Sounded much better than dirty channel to my ear. I hope this helps. and one more thing, Swamp Thang is so heavy, you'll get good workout carring your amp.
 

daddyo

Guest
Messages
11,797
I had a YCV40T which has 2- 10" Celestion Tube 10s. They actually sounded OK. With all new JJ tubes, the amp sounded very nice. It stayed clean to 7 on the clean channel.
 
Last edited:

soundchaser59

Thank You Great Spirit!
Gold Supporting Member
Messages
12,786
Seems like a lot of manufacturers assume we all want maximum gain at all times. That's why they put all 12AX7's in every preamp tube slot. The trade off is you get too much gain when you still want it clean.


You can try putting 5751's in V1 and V2. It will probably sound worse if you only do one of them, so do both if you want to know what it sounds like.

Another simple trick to try is put a clean boost pedal (Boosta Grande is what I use, it's quiet and effective) in the fx loop, to boost the signal after the preamp and into the power section. (assuming it's a serial loop)


Swamp Thang was my next suggestion, before I even read the other replies. Alnico does have smoother breakup, but it also breaks up earlier, less headroom you might say. I wouldn't go back to alnico in any amp that is less than 100 watts. The C70/80 is fair, nothing more, you will never go back to it once you switch. Weber Silver Bell would be nice in this amp.


The other factor here that is not being mentioned is what kind of pickups are you using? You'll have more trouble staying clean if you have high output pups.


Rule of thumb that I've picked up on by reading these forums is Loud Clean = More Power. If you think you only need 50 watts to get the sound you want, then you should be using a 100 watt amp to get the clean you want. The clean boost in the fx loop is a good substitute for what I'm doing.
 

PHINS

Member
Messages
52
I would try playing with the bright switch on. I had one of these for a while with the V30 speaker and was feeling the same as you. After I got used to playing with the bright switch on and getting the settings right it cut through the mix just fine. Good luck.
 

FatTeleTom

Member
Messages
1,571
I've got a YCV40WR, and from your description, it sounds to like something is not right with that amp. Any way you can do a quick recording?

Maybe the high-gain pre-amp tubes are the wrong way to go?

Mine doesn't start getting into any real saturation/breakup with most pickups until closer to 4 or 5 on the knob. It really starts to sing nicely at that volume level, but it's louder than I need for most small bar gigs.

For gigs, I normally run the volume around 3. That will carry small rooms unmic'd (quiet, usually unmic'd drummer, vocal-oriented soul/rock/country stuff), with what I consider to be a very nice clean tone--maybe breaking up a bit if I really dig in with humbuckers. EQ knobs generally around the middle setting, sometimes backing down the treble a bit, with the mids knob having the most effect.

This may not be the right amp for getting breakup/edge-of-breakup sounds (like in that Vox demo) out of the clean channel, at least at reasonable volumes. That's the one thing the amp isn't great at, due to the lack of a master volume on the clean channel.

I do think the gain channel can do pretty nice edge-of-breakup tones, but the gain channel is EQ'd fairly differently, so it's not the same tone has having the clean channel really cranked. I find the clean channel "juicier" and richer, so I generally use OD pedals through the clean channel.

My amp came stock with the Vintage 30, which I think works well in that amp (VERY well for some tones, and records beautifully), but does lean towards being a little bright or harsh for clean tones, particularly when playing by yourself.

That strident upper range thing has bothered me more and more lately, so I recently swapped in an Eminence Texas Heat, and so far I really like how it sounds for home practice and rehearsal. Seems to tame the upper mids thing somewhat, with a warmer, smoother top end and a LOT more bottom end. First gig in a couple of weeks, so I'll no more then.

But I found it to be a very effective giggng amp with that V30.

It'd be interesting to see how a Vintage 30 (or a Texas Heat for that matter) sounded swapped into your amp, but I'm not sure the speaker is the core issue here. It really sounds like something might be amiss with that amp.
 

jhc

Senior Member
Messages
12,528
The stock tubes are petty lifeless. I switched them out (on my YVC40WR) with a set of JJ's from Eurotubes pretty quickly and found the both the cleans and drive were much more musical. I then changed the power section to NOS Sylvania 5881's which really sweetened the clean chanel, dropped the output volume a little, and let me use the clean chanel on the verge of breakup as you're describing.
 

candh

Member
Messages
1,914
If you are getting dirt at 2 to 2.5 on the volume dial there is something amiss (agree with FatTeleTom) in the signal chain. Get it checked out.
 

Hoss

Member
Messages
438
I would try playing with the bright switch on. I had one of these for a while with the V30 speaker and was feeling the same as you. After I got used to playing with the bright switch on and getting the settings right it cut through the mix just fine. Good luck.
i never play without the bright switch on!!!

it also has a master volume mod put in...in place of the prescense knob whic is perpetually locked in at 5 inside!

i also usually never play through the dirty side and use pedals on the clean side!
 

FatTeleTom

Member
Messages
1,571
You shouldn't have to remove the grill to change the speaker. It's been a couple years since I changed mine, but I think you just remove the back panels and unscrew the speaker from the back.
 

sonofmickel

Member
Messages
111
First things first. Get at least one EQ pedal. Cut the lowest bass and highest treble before it gets to the amp. Then add or subtract at the amp, it will completely smooth out the EQ response and give you a lot more control. Got a loop? Put another EQ in there, maybe you will find your tone out of any amp this way?
 

soundchaser59

Thank You Great Spirit!
Gold Supporting Member
Messages
12,786
You shouldn't have to remove the grill to change the speaker. It's been a couple years since I changed mine, but I think you just remove the back panels and unscrew the speaker from the back.
My YCV20WR was rear loading. I never removed the front grill, don't know if it even comes off that way or not. But I had to be careful what speaker I used because the heavy Webers would hit the tubes.

But when I saw that YCV40 service manual showing the front grill removed, I just assumed it must be different than the YCV20?
 

FatTeleTom

Member
Messages
1,571
My YCV20WR was rear loading. I never removed the front grill, don't know if it even comes off that way or not. But I had to be careful what speaker I used because the heavy Webers would hit the tubes.

But when I saw that YCV40 service manual showing the front grill removed, I just assumed it must be different than the YCV20?
Nope, pretty sure it's rear loaded as I mentioned earlier. I'd double-check, but the amp is tucked way in the back of a closet at the moment as I generally use a Tweaker for most stuff now.

But I'm 99.999% that I did not have to remove the grill when I swapped in a Texas Heat.

Also, just FYI for those viewing the thread, note that the original post about sweetening the amp was based on an amp (or tubes) that probably weren't healthy, based on the details the OP posted.
 

soundchaser59

Thank You Great Spirit!
Gold Supporting Member
Messages
12,786
.....note that the original post about sweetening the amp was based on an amp (or tubes) that probably weren't healthy, based on the details the OP posted.
Now I remember why I got in on this thread. I test drove a YCV40 once, thinking it would be like the YCV20WR I had only with more power. I had thet same experience as the OP, no headroom, thin fuzzy sound immediately upon break up. Clean was nice, but the break up was unbearable. That turned me away from the 40 and I've not been interested in them since. Doesn't seem likely that two different YCV40's in different cities would have the same defect, does it? If that's what it is.....
 




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