Talk about your Reeves amp

pickslide

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
3,916
I hear nothing but good things about these. I am curious about the Custom 18 and the Custom Lead with the additional gain option. The clips on the website are OK, but I was told that they are not nearly representative of the amps. Just wanted to hear what people are still saying about their Reeves.
 

KBN

Member
Messages
1,087
I play a Custom 50. It makes me happy every time I play it. I don't have any experience with any of their other amps, but if they are anything like the Custom 50 they are worth every penny. The sound clips on the website really do not do any justice to the amps. I am pretty much repeating everything you have heard about Reeves amps, but I hope this helps in some way.
 

FFTT

Member
Messages
28,383
When you're looking at Reeves amps, you have to understand that you're looking at fine hand wired, road worthy old school Hiwatt build quality.

If you're primarily a home player or recording the Custom 18 or 30 will do just fine.

If you're working with a band and live drums, the Custom Lead
will give you much more versatility.

The Hiwatts were always known for high powered cleans to crunch
with OD tones when they were dimed.

The Custom Lead is a departure from that heritage offering more gain
and power scaling so you can enjoy those OD tones at lower volumes.

As with most amps, your choice of speakers and cabinets with make
quite a difference in the overall tone.

Hard to go wrong with these amps as long as you choose the approriate model.

I've got my eye on the 225 watt bass head.
 

pickslide

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
3,916
I understand that the custom 18 has more of a marshall thing going on. Obviously the custom lead is a plexi copy...but is that true about the 18?

I would be using it with a 2x12 with heritage g12m's.
 

FFTT

Member
Messages
28,383
The 18 watt model will sound very much like most of your 2XEL84
based 18 watts Marshalls only with better components.
You'll have pretty good clean headroom at lower volumes, but
with the G12's it will break to crunch earlier.

You may want to look at the Custom 30 if you think you'll want more
clean headroom at full band volumes.
 

daddyo

Guest
Messages
11,805
I don't own one but no other company impresses me like Reeves with a combination of tone, build quality, good prices, and engineering for today's low to medium volume tube amp needs. Of course, Reeves makes the Custom 50 and 100 for Hiwatt freaks who need power. I think classic amps like Germino (as an example) are the absolute cat's meow but buying one and sticking it in my basement would just creating a shrine to an ideal of tone and engineering, not buying a practical piece of gear. Reeves is at the top of my list when I buy my next amp.
 

FFTT

Member
Messages
28,383
To get a rough idea of what 2EL84's sound like, try to locate a dealer
selling the 65 Amps London and play it through a 2X12 cab with G12's

The Suhr Badger would be another good comparable amp for checking your clean headroom requirements.

The Reeves has a rather beefy tranny, so it's actually rated more like 20 watts, so
it should give you a bit more clean headroom, but the other two I've mentioned here
are within the ballpark of what you can expect.
 
Messages
377
I use a Reeves custom 30...its a wonderful amp. great for gigging as well as at home...just sayin'...it's a pretty loud 30 watter! originally used the head with an old open back marshall 2X12 cab..loaded with the original vintage celestions..that sound was amazing. I now have the head converted into a 2X12 combo with newer celestion V30's...and I think it could probably sound a little better with a different speaker...still sounds good, but might throw the vintage purples in there soon. at any rate, Reeves is the ****. :JAM
 

Fifthstone

Member
Messages
2,983
I have a Reeves Custom 6 and Custom 12, both combos. These amps are very loud for their rated wattage. I used to use my Custom 6 for un-mic'd band rehearsals (with a moderately loud but controlled drummer). My Custom 12 is louder, but not that much more than the Custom 6.

Both amps have a rich, thick clean that is very responsive to pick attack. Cranked both amps wail and backing off on the guitar volume brings clean tones with a full range of tones in between. The drive never sounds harsh, or like it's the preamp that's generating the overdrive. It's always the sound of power tubes kicking. I love this about the Reeves.

As far as build quality goes, I've opened both of them up and the innards are beautiful. Nothing but right angles and straight lines. Rock solid. I actually fell down a flight of stairs with the Custom 6 and apart from some ripped tolex (which I've since had recovered) the amp was good to go. Beautiful stuff.

You can't go wrong with these amps. Some day, I hope to get my hands on the Custom 50 or 100.
 

56_Special

Member
Messages
2,007
I have a Reeves Custom Lead. It's perfect for old school classic rock. It's the voice of rock. And the power scaling makes it incredibly versatile.
 

The Eristic

Member
Messages
1,714
Glad to see this thread!

My Goodsell Super 17 doesn't have the headroom for my "indie" (cringe) pop/rock band. Custom 30 or 50? I've played the 50 and LOVED it, but have never had the chance to try the 30. This band primarily relies on fuzz and the like for dirt, so the 50 would work great I'd imagine, but the portability/flexibility of the 30 might be nice. I fear it won't have enough headroom, though.

Thoughts?
 

FFTT

Member
Messages
28,383
You need power for live clean headroom where overdrive tones
are easy at lesser volumes especially if your amp is mic'd up.

The Custom 30 is single channel, cathode biased with KT66's, so you might want to find out what other power tubes can be used in the power section.
Power scaling makes it perfect for studio to stage.
The added bonus of the Custom 30 is the tube driven reverb circuit.

Generally, 30 watts is plenty for most live applications, but again this
all depends on your clean headroom requirements.

I personally prefer the available clean headroom of a 50 watt EL34 head, but this may be too loud for some smaller venues.

The 50's provide a great clean base for pedals.

The CP504 is the classic 4 input Hiwatt Circuit and the magic
comes when you jumper the inputs with the provided Y connector.
The Custom 50 adds a Master Volume control.

For the Custom 18 or 30, I'd probably run AlNiCo Blues in an open back cab
for sparkle and chime.
For the 50's I'd run closed back 2X10, 2X12 or 4Xeither
 

goodtone

Member
Messages
775
So how close does the Reeves Custom 50 sound when compared to a Hiwatt DR504 ? Can it get the same great headroom clean & crunch ?
 

FFTT

Member
Messages
28,383
I don't know if the Custom 50 allows for the same jumper set-up.
That's the magical part of where the best DR504 tones came from.

For those details, I'd contact Bill at Reeves
ph: 513-451-1071
 

callaway_1

Member
Messages
311
So how close does the Reeves Custom 50 sound when compared to a Hiwatt DR504 ? Can it get the same great headroom clean & crunch ?
The Reeves 50 is very very close. It is the same circuit as a mid 1970's 4 input DR504, the CP504 is the 50 watt version of the amps made for Pete Townshend.

The Answer is "basically, yes"

The custom 50 is much more flexible than the CP504.
 

FFTT

Member
Messages
28,383
The Reeves 50 is very very close. It is the same circuit as a mid 1970's 4 input DR504, the CP504 is the 50 watt version of the amps made for Pete Townshend.

The Answer is "basically, yes"

The custom 50 is much more flexible than the CP504.
Can you jumper the inputs in the Custom 50 to allow for blending of the two channels like in the CP504?
 

FFTT

Member
Messages
28,383
In that case the only real difference between the Custom 50 and the CP504
appears to be the added Master Volume in the Custom 50, which is cool.

As far as A/B comps between the Reeves and original DR504, it's only fair to
consider the difference of a 30 year old well seasoned Fane speaker cab.

Vintage Purples, vs Original Fanes vs Weber Thames ( ceramic or AlNiCo's)
or the new Scumback Scumnicos. Tough choices.

I'm still trying to figure out if anyone is building WEM reproduction cabs,
beings that I'm a David Gilmour freak.
 

callaway_1

Member
Messages
311
The DR504 and CP504 have Very different preamps.

The Reeves VP's are the closest thing to a vintage Fane. They are an excellent speaker!

check out the gilmour gear forum. There is a guy in PA. working on reproducing the WEM cabs.
 

FFTT

Member
Messages
28,383
That's interesting for sure about the pre-sections.

I would naturally assume from the model number reference
that they were very close.

Is the Reeves then possibly closer to another design?

Joyce maybe?

BTW, I've invited Bill from Reeves Amps to join us here in these forums.
Would be great to have his direct input on some of these questions.
 




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