Tell me about the 5 watt Swarts.

DWB1960

Senior Member
Messages
21,996
Specifically the 5 watt 6V6se Space Tone.

I've already read through most of the older threads but am looking for input from folks who have been playing them for a while now. I want something that can be played clean at low bedroom levels but can take pedals really well (TS9 and/or Plexitone) for heavier OD with sustain.
 

spayne99

Member
Messages
420
I'm a new owner of a used 6v6se. Cleans are nice and round and full with the volume at 2-3. That's bedroom volume, subjectively (it's not real loud but everybody's situation is different). I put a TC Hall Of Fame in front for ambiance and it's a beautiful clean tone, different than my PRRI's clean tone.

Mine stays pretty clean up to about halfway on the volume, but for house friendly volume you can't really play it this loud. Then it's edging into crunch. With the volume at 3/4ths it's way too loud for (my) house but that's where I think it really starts to shine. All the way up is magic.

I don't think this amp should be used with OD pedals because the amps OD is unique and special. Just listen to the sound samples on Swarts site. So I have a Night Light Jr attenuator on the way!

Good luck with yours!

Edit: Forgot about the little switch that's a -3 DB negative feedback thing. When engaged, the amp is a bit quieter, warmer and jazzier. When not engaged, a bit louder and more open sounding. Playing at volume 2-3 with this switch engaged, the amp is bedroom quiet I'd say.
 
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Grant S.

Member
Messages
332
I bought an STR Trem here from another member and it's a ton of fun. 5 watts is still surprisingly loud, but you can crank it all the way up without going deaf.

It's a nice comfortable volume for me (medium room) when playing clean at home, and it plays well with pedals. It's not a blackface clean though. It has it's own tweedy thing going on that I find very satisfying. If you like the clips I think you would gel with it.

The Swart tube tremolo is off the hook too by the way. That could be my favorite thing about the amp.
 

spayne99

Member
Messages
420
But have you tried it with any?

Thanks for the reply.
Sounds great with the gain boost setting engaged on my Wampler Black '65. Exploding cranked amp sounds. It's a fantastic pedal. Haven't tried a TS style pedal though.
 

DWB1960

Senior Member
Messages
21,996
Thanks again for the replies. How it sound at really low volume - like everyone else in the house is sleeping levels? Does it retain a decent amount of it's voice? My playing room is down the hall from the bedrooms and I'd be behind a closed door.
 
Messages
639
I'd get a nightlight for that situation you described. The tone from that amp is heaven.

Everything that comes out of it makes you want to keep playing. Best bet without the Nightlight would be keeping the volume down and using a "Tubescreamer" variant of your choosing. The reverb is huge and stellar.

Loved this amp. GAS is an evil mistress...
 

spayne99

Member
Messages
420
The 6v6se is not whisper quiet at its lowest volume. If you're playing softly and clean at vol 2 I think you'd be ok. You might bother people if you're playing through an OD pedal with a cutting tone. It's hard to tell.
 

LPV

Member
Messages
701
Without a night light it will be a bit loud. The volume ramps up at the beginning quickly on my strt. This is my strt at 67db with the Unleash.

 

Tim Plains

Member
Messages
6,145
I once owned a 6V6se and currently have a STR and Atom (think I liked the se more than the Atom but I didn't have both amps at the same time to compare). Personally, I woundn't use a Swart at such low volumes if you have to worry about people down the hall. Use a solid state amp for that. You asked how this amp sounds at sleeping levels. How good does any tube amp sound at sleeping levels? You're not going to get that glorious Swart tone TGP raves about unless you push the amp. I also have a Night Light and never use it because the amp sounds 10 times better without it. I actually think it sounds like garbage with the attenuator set to full.
 

Jaimoe

Member
Messages
1,827
The little Swart sounds even better when you turn it around so the controls are facing you.

Go figure.
 

Mojo Shinn

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
446
I used to own an atom, and later traded it in for an STR. The STR is definitely a better sounding amp when using humbuckers at higher volumes due to the 12" speaker . With single coils or cleaner volumes w/humbuckers, however, the atom was really fantastic! The 12" speaker in the STR improves the sound IMO, and gives you the option of being able to use it in a basement jam situation (something that was just outside of the range of the Atom). This question of "can I use it at night when people are sleeping at bedroom volumes" comes up quite a bit here, so I'll answer it this way: Would you buy a Porsche 911 if you were only going to drive it around in your 25-mph-speed-limit neighborhood? All tube amps are this way (not just Swarts)... Certainly you can run the volume at 2, and all of the 5 watters sound great at these clean volumes. But these amps beg you to twist the volume knob! They just transcend with the volume at about 2:00! Therefore, getting some sort of attenuator is going to be necessary -- the night lights are a good choice. I use pedals with mine as well. I have a Timmy with a moderate amount of gain and set up to push the front end of the amp (sounds awesome and definitely requires the use of an attenuator at home) and an OCD for higher gain stuff (this sounds great at volume, but as you would imagine, not nearly good at bedroom levels).
So, the bottom line is that any of the Swart amps are going to be a great investment, and whether you are a home player, a weekend jammer, or a pro that needs a small-stage amp, they are great at what they do...... The Porsche thing? Sure you're going to enjoy the car at 25 mph... but I guarantee that once you own one, you will look for any and every excuse to take it out on the highway and open it up... consequences be damned..... just sayin'
 

porticoguitar1

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
585
Bedroom volume jamming is what keeps Line 6 in business. I'm not bashing anyone. I'm only saying that the concept of paint melting soloing at 50db is a joke and far too debated here in TGP world. I can get a 100watt Marshall down to bedroom level but, just like the swart, it's not gonna sound good. I love the swart, but it needs more volume to really shine. That's where modeling comes in. And in my not-so-humble opinion, that's where amp modeling belongs.
 

DWB1960

Senior Member
Messages
21,996
The Porsche thing? Sure you're going to enjoy the car at 25 mph... but I guarantee that once you own one, you will look for any and every excuse to take it out on the highway and open it up... consequences be damned..... just sayin'
That would be the beauty of the 6V6se for me. It's very portable so I could easily take it to my work (a 5 min drive from home) at night or on weekends to wail at high volumes, or during the day when I have the house to myself. But I'd also want to use it late night too since I just can't get on with SS no matter how hard I've tried.

Another question: How does turning it backwards affect the volume level? I'd imagine it dampens the loudness a bit, right?
 

Last

Member
Messages
4,279
I once owned a 6V6se and currently have a STR and Atom (think I liked the se more than the Atom but I didn't have both amps at the same time to compare). Personally, I woundn't use a Swart at such low volumes if you have to worry about people down the hall. Use a solid state amp for that. You asked how this amp sounds at sleeping levels. How good does any tube amp sound at sleeping levels? You're not going to get that glorious Swart tone TGP raves about unless you push the amp. I also have a Night Light and never use it because the amp sounds 10 times better without it. I actually think it sounds like garbage with the attenuator set to full.
There are a couple of very simple MODS for the Night Light that really can make a huge difference depending on how you want to use it.

Swart Night Light MODS

I felt the same way about it until I modded mine.
 

Mojo Shinn

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
446
It's very portable so I could easily take it to my work (a 5 min drive from home) at night or on weekends to wail at high volumes, or during the day when I have the house to myself.
Another question: How does turning it backwards affect the volume level? I'd imagine it dampens the loudness a bit, right?
Yeah, that's the right frame of mind! LOL! The SE, Atom and STR all have ceramic speakers and the circuit in general has a good amount of midrange to it... this midrange quality (IMO) makes it sit in a mix very well and cut through well... However, when you're playing by yourself, it can have the feeling of sounding slightly harsh. I used to turn it around to face me when playing along with backing tracks, and spin it around with the controls facing me for those times I was playing without accompaniment.
 

LPV

Member
Messages
701
One of the coolest things about my STR is being able to move it around the house so easy and try different spaces and rooms. The damping in the room (carpet, furniture, etc..) place a big role in what you hear when there is not a mic 3" in front of the speaker. The worst rooms are smaller like my music room (where I get exiled to) with sheetroc and hard floors. I put it in my living room with a tall ceiling and furniture and WOW. Totally different amp. So fun.
 

spayne99

Member
Messages
420
One of the coolest things about my STR is being able to move it around the house so easy and try different spaces and rooms. The damping in the room (carpet, furniture, etc..) place a big role in what you hear when there is not a mic 3" in front of the speaker. The worst rooms are smaller like my music room (where I get exiled to) with sheetroc and hard floors. I put it in my living room with a tall ceiling and furniture and WOW. Totally different amp. So fun.
Yep. I notice that I like to use the reverb pedal when I play in my small music room. But when I can play the amp in my living room, and sit 10 feet away from the amp, I marvel at how great it sounds and the natural ambiance of the cab / room means no 'verb pedal necessary.
 

Gallery

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
8,022
I just ordered a Night Light to test on my Vibro Champ. If it doesn't kill the tone at my basement guitar room volume I'll be ordering an STR-Tremolo. Just need to decide between tuxedo or tweed. Should be a great amp to compliment the cleans of the VC.
 




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