Taming the Beast: /13 RSA 23 Largebox (Click)

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by bluessyndicate, Nov 20, 2008.

  1. bluessyndicate

    bluessyndicate Supporting Member

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    Have tried so many different things to date...

    Attenuator (Using a Z Air Brake to good results, but currently am sans attenuator and loving it. Only extreme attenuation was getting me there.)

    Daisy Chaining it 4 hole plexi style (did that for awhile for the novelty of it all, but preferred to have 2 channel capability using the Switchazel)

    Switchazel (channel switching, channel blending, and great clean transparent boost with tuner output jack).

    Minimizing the EQ's which actually drives the volume way down without adversely affecting tone significantly (eq to taste but at min values). While this tames the TMB channel it does not do anything for the click channel since it does not go through the TMB eq circuit.

    And then finally,...the point of this post, my current approach.

    Using low sensitivity jacks on both channels.
    Minimizing the EQ's on the TMB channels.
    Set the TMB volume fairly high for use as my leads
    Set Click channel volume low for rolled back cleans and rolled on edge tones
    Use Switchazel boost on either channel as needed.

    This approach, while counter intuitive to how I had operated (always wanting the high gain settings of the click channel for solo's which drove me to very high volumes and necessitated use of attenuators or replastering of the walls), is giving me great clean, edge, lead and boost tones at acceptable volumes. I could take this rig as configured and play small blues clubs and have great tones. I'm loving it. I'm going to show up at a local blues jam and give everyone the treat of playing through it.

    The main point I am making is that of using the click channel for cleans and the TMB channel for gain, the other tricks are just ways of taming the volume further. I still get a very woody sounding clean out of hte click channel, and the TMB gives me some great marshally with the harmonic complexity you'd expect out of this amp.

    I have tamed the beast.

    I will soon also try switching from KT88's to KT66 to see if that allows me to open up the volume some more. I hesitate only because Fred has indicated that while it is possibly to use KT66/EL34/6L6 on this amp, he clearly prefers KT88's.

    Has anyone else tried this approach, or some other approach that you'd like to comment on or share? I'm really happy with the results and am now confident that I could happily use this rig at most any venue. I hear of others going smallbox master on this amp, but I for one am thrilled and completely content with the largebox click format and would not have it any other way.
     
  2. SkydogFan81

    SkydogFan81 Supporting Member

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    Hey, which blues jam do you go to?
     
  3. bluessyndicate

    bluessyndicate Supporting Member

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    There are a few here in the east bay....a little bit of a drive for you. Out in Hayward, Livermore, Danville, Concord and Oakland. I guess there are some in Fremont as well, which would be closer for you, but I have not yet hit those.

    Where are the Jams in Santa Cruz, or are you hitting JJ's in San Jose?
     
  4. SkydogFan81

    SkydogFan81 Supporting Member

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    I go to Dennis Dove's Blues Jam at the Fogbank in Capitola every other Sunday. I have been to JJ's a couple of times.

    I heard there was a jam in Redwood City that Gelb brought /13's to for people to try out.

    I'd be down to take my /13 out for a local /13 jam show and tell!
     
  5. bluessyndicate

    bluessyndicate Supporting Member

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    DaveS was talking about possibly wanting to come out this way for a blues jam as well...maybe he'd bring his ERT33 (before it sells in the emporium) to add to it....
     
  6. SkydogFan81

    SkydogFan81 Supporting Member

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    Hey man, just let me know, I'm always down and my gig schedule is slowing down for the next 2 months. I've got a couple cool pedals too:AOK
     
  7. bluessyndicate

    bluessyndicate Supporting Member

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    Sounds good...

    Now if only some /13 RSA 23 users would comment on the original post and share some insights!
     
  8. uberschall

    uberschall Supporting Member

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    I tried this approach the other day, and while I got each channel sounding pretty good, they didn't sound that hot when combined. Would you mind sharing your amp settings?
     
  9. shaynewgreen

    shaynewgreen Member

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    bump. thanks for the great info. i will be trying things out and hopefully reporting some good input. i would love to keep this thread going.
     
  10. davros

    davros Member

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    Thanks for the post Blues... I tried it but I prefer the sound of the TMB channel for cleans.

    I use an Ultimate attenuator which works well with the RSA23, and the Switchhazel. I love the boost on the Switchhazel!

    D
     
  11. bluessyndicate

    bluessyndicate Supporting Member

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    I don't usually combine channels as I find that the click so overwhelms the tmb typically that it just realy almost sounds like the click by itself..in any event, if there is a different between the two blended vs. just the click it's negligible to my ears.

    Settings per your request:

    TMB Channel:
    low sensitivity input
    B: 7 o'clock
    M: 7 o'clock
    T: 9 o'clock
    V: 12 - 3 o'clock

    Click Channel:
    low sensitivity input
    Click: 3rd click from left
    Volume: 9 o'clock

    I have the 2x12 /13 cab, partially open, with a blend of a blue/G12H30
     
  12. bluessyndicate

    bluessyndicate Supporting Member

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    Switchazel! +1 :banana
     
  13. uberschall

    uberschall Supporting Member

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    Cool man, thanks! I'll give that a whirl. I like to set the Click relative to TMB so that when you kick both channels on, it sounds like you hit an OD pedal- a little boost, more gain, more mids. Then you can still get more saturation & level, and a little less mids, by going to Click only. I always end up putting the Click tone knob at the @11:00 click.

    Also I'm using my delay pedals after the Switchazel on TMB channel only- works SO good.
     
  14. bluessyndicate

    bluessyndicate Supporting Member

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    Interesting, I saw in another post the idea of using a delay after the switchazel into one of the channels...it makes so much sense to do this now, but damn if I did not think of that on my own...

    When I bought the amp I did try Lance's suggestion of buying an Xotic Effects Blender pedal and mixing in some digital reverb (Boss RV5)..but I returned the pedals to Stu because I did not dig the results...the blender worked fine at low gain settings, but obviously did not at high gain settings....but on top of that I learned that I simply don't dig digital reverb.

    I think I will try some digital delay using the technique you shared..was thinkign about an MXR Carbon Copy...a friend of mine has had good results with that pedal in the loop of his Matchless Chieftain.

    Thanks for tip.

    Damn I have come to love this amp more and more...It's funny fairly gifted guitarist was over the other day and tried it out, and just did not "get it". It has such a unique sonic signature and great harmonic complexity and incredible presence...why don't more people get it?
     
  15. uberschall

    uberschall Supporting Member

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    Yeah, I always thought that if I want to have good-sounding delay with the RSA, I'd have to get a wet-dry rig going, but having the delay after the Switch has changed all that. The trick is just to put it on whichever is the cleaner of the channels- when you add the other channel, you get your extra gain without the delay getting out of hand. I'm going to try it with my DD-20 too to set some different delay levels and types. I want to A/B the DD-20 though to see how the buffer affects the amp tone.
     
  16. gtrfinder

    gtrfinder Supporting Member

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    I'm still digging my RSA23. The band I play with the most requires me to use an attenuator with the amp, but I find that the Dr. Z Airbrake works wonders.
    I'm running the Divided by 13 2x12 closed back with a Greenback and Scumback M75 I've toyed with the idea of changing one of my speakers (Greenback) to a G12H30 or Scumback to see if I liked the difference.
    I did not, however, particularly care for the G12H30 in a 2x12 open back paired with a Gold. Maybe it was just the cabinet I was using (Avatar).

    The amp is very unique sounding. When cranked up it is definetely the meanest sounding 23 watts I've ever heard.
     
  17. bluessyndicate

    bluessyndicate Supporting Member

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    I started with the two greenbacks that cam in the closed back cab..but prefer the open sound of a partial open back cab, and stuck a blue and a G12H30...I a/b'd that with a /13 cab with 2 blues in it.and that sound great as well. With two blues this thing could eat an RSA 31 and still serve up the unique RSA 23 tones, but slightly compromised bass response, but still very good. With a blue/G12H30 I felt that it still could go into RSA 31 territory, while still rockign out hard..and while I like Greenbacks in a 4x12, I think 2x12's work better with G12H's.

    I own the Dr Z. airbrake as well, but based on the techniques discussed in the original post, I no longer need to use the attenuator...however I woudl still use it when configuring the amp the way I used to i.e. using the click channel for high gain and the TMB for cleans/edge/crunch.
     
  18. uberschall

    uberschall Supporting Member

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    bluessyndicate,
    I finally was able to try out your settings- I was able to get each channel sounding great by itself, but not at the right volumes/feel for me to go back and forth easily. Also, I couldn't get a great combined sound, which I still love to do. It was fun experimenting, though!
     
  19. bluessyndicate

    bluessyndicate Supporting Member

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    Cool...it's always fun ....I don't blend channels so that's not a limitation for me...so now it's my turn to try that out some more..thanks.
     
  20. m3g

    m3g Member

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    For what it's worth, and after experimenting with both channels on my FTR37, I am working the amp a little backwards to balance both channels, but with great results. I only use the low sensitivity inputs on both channels. I am using the click channel for cleans (with just a thouch of hair), then I turn up the tmb channel (actually no mid on the FTR, but I pull the volume as a mid/gain boost) to balance, then run an od pedal on the tmb channel. I also have the option then of having a separate, yet distinguishable clean on the tmb channel with the OD pedal off.

    love to try the RSA 23 some day, but I hear there is quite a bit of overlap with the FTR 37.
     

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