Vox AC4 Handwired... Anyone own one?

koa

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1,242
What is the general consensus of this amp? Does it sound small and boxy and is it good with pedals? Thanks
 

feet

Gold Supporting Member
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4,847
depends what you want from it, really. I think mine is pretty neat, especially since I added an eqd tone job to use as a defacto tone stack. it corrects some of the issues I had with the amp, if you want to call it that. It makes many sounds I like now.

Like any amp, you choice of speaker and tubes make a huge difference. Mine is plenty loud and has enough head room for solo shows and small jams. I wouldn't expect to use it for much more than that. The eq pedal brings in plenty of low end and it's full and warm enough for jazz tones- sounds great with a byrdland.

Don't care for the hot mode and I'm a normal channel guy, as opposed to the top boost, but I'm pleased with it now. it is sort of expensive for what it is and not for everyone. I've made several posts about it in the past.

I'll add a pic when I get home so you can see how I use it. I set it cleanish and get gain from pedals. But an eq, boost/od and reverb is enough for me with it.
 

MHG

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5,696
I have one, and it's OK. I felt the same way about the higher powered versions as well. The Tone Tubby Red Alnico is a fantastic upgrade for these amps. Huge improvement!
 

feet

Gold Supporting Member
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4,847


here's the nano setup. it was just a practice amp to keep by the couch but with the eq in front of it, there isn't anything secondary about it. i also have am ac15hw and 100 watt monster amp and this keeps up, tonally. the key for me was to cut mids, as the thing was just to forward with those, and the tone stack didn't really address that to my liking. a little bass to give it a bigger cab sound and some highs for the chime. i play with the settings depending on the guitar but that's the basic plan.

i should also note that for a 4 watt amp, its both fairly large and heavy. its not adorable like the ac4tv.
 

Joshlespaul1952

Gold Supporting Member
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1,533
It does sound small(-er than some amps...), and I wish it had more bass, but for what I paid for mine (used), I can't think of another amp that is both handwired and sounds remotely as good.
As feet said—nothing an EQ can't handle. Also, as feet said, I'm really not a fan of the hot mode; it's already a loud four watts in the cool mode and the hot mode just makes it even louder. Maybe if I could open it up a bit I would enjoy it..?

BTW, feet, if you don't mind my asking—which tubes are you running in yours? I've still got the ones that came with it in mine.

I'm not a big pedal user, but it accepts my delay and my HOF just fine. I will be upgrading the speaker eventually, though... probably to a Blue.

Overall, I would recommend it, but I would not pay MSRP. If you have more questions, I'd be happy to help. :)
 
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feet

Gold Supporting Member
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4,847
tung sol 12ax7, mullard el84 and a random nos 12ay7 in the v1 position. i believe i prefer a 12ax7 in the v1 as well, but i didn't want to spring for a nice one and that one was already in there, so whatever. the eq compensates.

i've tried even lower gain tubes in there and i didn't care for those at all. just kinda sucks the life out of it. mine also has a scumback in it. i'd rather have a ceramic of some kind, but its just practice amp, basically. i got a good deal on mine, too and with the eq, it sounds a lot more like it's older brother. i was considering having it modded before i figured the eq trick out. i used an rc booster before that as a defacto eq and it worked ok, but cutting the mids is the most important part for me.
 

onebigholiday

Silver Supporting Member
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395
@feet I currently have an AC15H1TV, which I'm assuming is similar to the AC15HW1. I have an infant at home so I was thinking about selling it and buying an AC4HW1. Can you describe the volume difference? Is it significant?
 

s360guitarist

Silver Supporting Member
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4,138
^The ac15 Will be a good bit louder IME. The ac4he would be better for playing around the house, but IMO would not get much further if needed.

Note: the ac15tv is unlike the ac15hw in that it has an ef86.
 

blaster

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1,197
I had one but sold it and picked up the ac10 which I like better. The ac4hw had a lack of bass no matter what speaker I tried. I thought it was a nice amp but once I tried the ac10, I sold it
 

feet

Gold Supporting Member
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4,847
@feet I currently have an AC15H1TV, which I'm assuming is similar to the AC15HW1. I have an infant at home so I was thinking about selling it and buying an AC4HW1. Can you describe the volume difference? Is it significant?
depends what kind of tones you're after, i suppose, and where those tones come from. the ac4hw is plenty to antagonize your neighbors, let alone an infant. its ultimate db output is lower than that of the ac15hw, but i'd probably just use the master on that. personally, i've never cranked both side by side but they both handle indoor volumes just fine. i use them both as pedal platforms and run them cleanish, so i don't have to crank them crazy loud (but it helps). an eq pedal addresses the lack of bass/small sound of the ac4hw.

another thing to consider is that it is lacking most of the features of the ac14hw. its just the top boost channel with a hot switch. no cut, no normal channel, no half power. that's actually why i got the eq to begin with, because i'm not really a top boost guy, and i really don't care for the hot switch, especially in the ac4.
 

onebigholiday

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
395
I would use it in the same way. I have a "live" amp. The AC15 used to be my live amp, but now it just sits in the basement. I wish that my AC15H1TV had a master volume. I've been using a cheap attenuator but I guess I'm just curious... and bored.
 

Comanche5

Member
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1,844
For the purposes of playing with an infant in the house, the AC4 is not a quiet amp. As an experiment, go to your AC15, turn down the bass all the way, crank your treble... that's how the AC4 will sound. Not much quieter and way less warm.

@feet I currently have an AC15H1TV, which I'm assuming is similar to the AC15HW1. I have an infant at home so I was thinking about selling it and buying an AC4HW1. Can you describe the volume difference? Is it significant?
 




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