Upgrade Classic 30 to sound "Voxy"?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by AbstractLunatic, May 30, 2005.


  1. AbstractLunatic

    AbstractLunatic Member

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    Is there a tube/speaker combination that could help a Peavey Classic 30 sound more Beatlesque/Voxy than the stock stuff?

    My current plan is JJ tubes all around and an Eminence Red Fang speaker. How's that sound to you guys?
     
  2. fatback

    fatback Member

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    Good NOS EL-84's and a Celestion Blue are glorious upgrades for your Peavy 30. Your idea of using JJ's and a Red Fang is good and is definately more econimical, but I've never heard this combination. The Blue and NOS tubes is a sure thing. It won't turn your Peavey into a Vox, nothing will, but it will be one very tonefull amp. I've heard a Classic 30 set up like this and was amazed. Boutique Peavey tone? You bet cha!!:eek: ;) :dude

    As for early Beatles Vox tones, a Janglebox comp pedal wouldn't hurt either.
     
  3. AshlandBump

    AshlandBump Member

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    I'd go with a 30 watt Weber Blue Dog over the Celestion Blue. The Celestion is rated at 15 watts and while it probably can handle more power than that, blowing one is an expensive proposition. The Blue Dogs are supposed to do the Celestion Blue thing very well. Better yet, pick up an inexpensive 2x12 cab and run two Celestion Blues or two 15 watt Blue Dogs. Part of the AC-30 sound definitely comes from two Blues working together.
    If you can't afford NOS tubes, consider picking up EI power and pre-amp tubes, at least you'll be getting what usually comes standard in a Vox.
     
  4. AshlandBump

    AshlandBump Member

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    oh, and leave the "drive" channel on the PV alone -- crank the clean channel for your overdrive tones.
     
  5. Blueser

    Blueser Member

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    I guess my thought is why drop $500 in speakers and NOS tubes, plus your (or worse) a tech's labor to upgrade an amp that's worth less than $350 at this point?

    I would sell the PV, and use the cash to pick up a higher quality used amp which will get you into Beatles territory without further mods.

    This is no knock on the PV. I happen to think its a great amp, but economically, this just doesn't make sense.

    It's kinda like the kids I see hot rodding $800 cars that have no chance of being collectable, with $4K worth of wheels, exhaust systems, and ground effects, and another $2K for a stereo you can hear in the next state.

    Just my opinion.
     
  6. AbstractLunatic

    AbstractLunatic Member

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    That's why I was looking at JJ's and an Eminence speaker for the Peavey. Because the Peavey is a $350 amp.

    I'm open to suggestions for other amps but I don't have more than about $1000 right now for an amp.
     
  7. cvansickle

    cvansickle Member

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    I had a Classic 30 until last year. I always thought it had too much midrange, so I ran a graphic eq in the effects loop to scoop it. I could get nice sparkling cleans this way. The eq was the inexpensive Danelectro Fish & Chips.
     
  8. Boogs

    Boogs Member

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    Pick up a couple sets of EI EL84s from dougstubes.com - they have more chime and midrange clarity than the JJs, though the JJs are nice in their own right.
     
  9. fatback

    fatback Member

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    I wouldn't throw $500 into an under $300 C30 either. That's what ebay and the emporium are for ;) . The amp I described was a beater that had been left as a gift. The Celestion Blue was $150 off craigslist three years ago and the power tubes were under $80. I'm sure the Eminence and JJ's will sound great, but if you can find some deals on good old 84's and a Blue I'd definately go that route.

    The Blue has been played hard in the C30 for over a year now and sounds great with no issues at all. It's a speaker that gets sweeter when pushed a bit.
     
  10. wsaraceni

    wsaraceni Member

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    why not get a valvetech or one of the new vox custom classics. that would be better for your grand in my opinion
     
  11. AbstractLunatic

    AbstractLunatic Member

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    Ok, here's my line of thinking right now. I'm not set on doing upgrades on the Classic 30 vs. a new Vox or some other option but I do have some limitations.

    If I could get a Vox AC30CCH head and 2x12 Cabinet with Blues for $1000 total, I'd be all over it. The Combo with Blues is about $1600 and the deal breaker is it's 70 lbs. My old tired back wants to carry about 45 lbs. at the most at one time.

    That's the good thing about the Classic 30. I also have a 1x12 extension cab so I still have 2 speakers and can be carried up and down stairs and for long distances without breaking a hip ;) Ok, I'm not that old but you get the idea.

    I don't want to drop too much on upgrades on an inexpensive amp and if I sold it, I wouldn't be able to get much for it to pad my "amp account" enough to get the Head and 2x12 cab with Blues so I'd still be stuck with something that's not quite right but I'd be out a bunch of cash.

    Essentially, I want to make sure I'm getting the best option of the inexpensive upgrades I can do until I can get the real deal.

    EDIT: All of a sudden I am thinking I could sell my Classic 30 AND my Fender Twin Reverb Reissue... hmmm...
     
  12. bobbystroker

    bobbystroker Guest

    as i understand it, the new vox heads are selling for $800? an avatar 2x12 will set ya back $250-300 loaded? sell the peavy and you'd be well under a grand, and by all accounts have the vox sound you are looking for. just a thought....
     
  13. AbstractLunatic

    AbstractLunatic Member

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    That's a good idea. What speakers would you load in the Avatar cab?
     
  14. bobbystroker

    bobbystroker Guest

    i'll let someone else chime in on what would be good for that head/cab combo. but i imagine some of the suggestions already given would work well, or check out the eminence thread that is 100 pgs long it seems :). and dave at avatar is a good guy and i'm sure would steer ya in the right direction.
     
  15. meterman

    meterman Member

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    I was in a similar situation with my Classic 30, I liked the portability and power range of it but the tone wasn't doing it for me. I put in a V30, then a G12H-30, bought an extension cab, retubed with JJs....and it still wasn't getting it for me. The component values in the preamp apparently limit the bass response, you can change a couple of the components to get a more full range response but then the cabinet rattles cuz it's not built to take it....when it was all said and done I A/B'd my upgraded C30 against a friend's AC15 RI and that told the story...after everything I put in it the C30 still sounded thin, kinda harsh, and had midrange "doink" to it that just wouldn't go away....not to say that the Classic 30 is a bad amp, it's great for the money but I learned my lesson about upgrading it....

    If I was you, I would look for a used TopHat Club Royale. It's 20w in Class A from 2xEL84s and easily as loud as the C30, with the same preamp circuit as King Royale's second channel which is based on an AC30 Top Boost. You can get a 1x12 CR for $800-900 and it will blow the C30 away, you won't believe the difference in tone quality. Point to point handwired, top notch cab work, built to last. The THs tend to be undervalued on the used market IMHO and are great great amps.....If you're patient you could even pick up a 2x12 CR for less than a grand (one just went on Ebay for $929), BTW the 2x12 CR is nice and compact and only weighs 55 lbs!

    Here's a link for more info, also check the forum for discussion on them:

    http://www.tophatamps.com/club.htm

    If you decide you do want to stick with the C30, there are some mods described at www.blueguitar.org including a cathode bias mod that may help get you where you want to go. The problem with modding the internals of these amps is that they are PCB with ribbon cables and a PITA (and therefore expensive) to work on
     
  16. Bluesdude6

    Bluesdude6 Member

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    Has anyone seen and heard a Classic 30 after a Fargen upgrade? He makes amazing hand wired amps and I was wondering if what he did with a C30 was worth the $350, and how it sounded.
     
  17. EZchair Picker

    EZchair Picker Member

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    FWIW, I have both an AC30 and a C30 with red fang and while you can find some common ground, they still sound like two different amps. Despite both being el84 type amps, the vox has that classic 'brit' voicing while the peavey has more of the 'american' type flavor to it. The fang does sound nice in the C30, but it's far from instant vox tones. That being said, the C30 is a nice amp in it's own right.
     
  18. Doug H

    Doug H Senior Member

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    :agree

    Before you blow money on speakers and tubes, try putting an inexpensive EQ in the fx loop. Speakers and tubes will only get you so far if the overall voicing of the amp is not right. Classic 30/50's have a funky tuning to their tone stack for one and I'm not sure how "Voxy" you're going to get with that amp without some surgery on the circuitry itself. But using an EQ like this can dramatically change the sound of an amp, and can help you decide whether it has potential before putting a lot of money into parts. There's nothing wrong with using an EQ like this on a permanent basis too if it gets you the sound you want.

    EDIT: Heh, I just looked at the schematic. I seriously doubt you're going to get this thing to sound "Vox" with just a tube/speaker upgrade.
     
    Last edited: Sep 30, 2009
  19. Ramblin390

    Ramblin390 Member

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    eq in efx loop. weber blue dog light dope. and no dark and lifeless jj's in the preamp.
    tung-sol in v1
    v2 mullard or 9th gen nippo
    sovtek lps in v3
     
  20. famouspogs

    famouspogs Member

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    I had a Peavey Classic 30 that had a really worked in and warm sounding Sheffield speaker. It sounded really great with the right tubes. Nothing brittle about it, the mid range was perfect for me too. I think it was due to an Amperex tube I was using because after it died I couldn't seem to get the same type of saturation on the drive channel and the cleans became abit dull. I hate saying that because its hard for me to believe 1 tube can make such a difference but it did I think.
     

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