Which amp mods make the biggest improvement to tone?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by T-Bro, Feb 28, 2008.

  1. T-Bro

    T-Bro Member

    Messages:
    17
    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2008
    Location:
    Baltimore, MD
    Kind of a noob thread but here it goes anyway...

    I recently replaced the tubes in my Crate Palamino and noticed a HUGE improvements in tone. If $80 worth of Mullards can make my amp sound better I started wondering what other mods could make an impovement to tone. I think that a speaker swap would be the next obvious mod that would drastically affect the tone.

    Aside from tubes and speakers, what are other good mods?
     
  2. rob2001

    rob2001 Member

    Messages:
    16,945
    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2006
    Location:
    Wisconsin
    I feel you can change out tubes and speakers but if your still not getting what you want from an amp it's time to sell it and find somthing that works better for you. And really, there are other area's of a rig besides the amp that need attention....guitars, pickups, cables pedals etc...

    Amp modding is cool if the mods provide a proven, known result but just trying somthing and hoping for good results is a crapshoot.
     
  3. Markgtr

    Markgtr Member

    Messages:
    44
    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2008
    Try the speaker first or better yet, plug it into another cab. I found this can make a huge difference in an amp.
     
  4. µ¿ z3®ø™

    µ¿ z3®ø™ Member

    Messages:
    5,711
    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2005
    Location:
    t-dot
    depending on the amp, after swapping out valves and speakers, the transformers and chokes in an amp that are replaced w/ high quality iron can often result in the amp sounding more open and responsive.
     
  5. Rosewood

    Rosewood Member

    Messages:
    1,875
    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2007
    I would stick to tubes and speakers for that amp, that will give you the most for the money.
     
  6. LaXu

    LaXu Member

    Messages:
    2,773
    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2004
    Location:
    Finland
    IMO no amp should need to have things like transformers changed unless there is something wrong with them (as in not working). For what that costs one might just buy a more expensive amp to begin with.
     
  7. T-Bro

    T-Bro Member

    Messages:
    17
    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2008
    Location:
    Baltimore, MD
    Thanks for the response guys!

    It's not that I don't like the tone of my amps, it's just that I'm sure it can be improved by better components. After I try new speakers I'll move on to the transformer. Any suggestions for speaker replacements? I only use the OD channel on the amps with very little gain. I play in a jam band so I would say that my tone mostly stays within the rock, blues, funk range. Since I have two amps I wanted to try 2 different speakers. Know of any speakers that pair together well? Seperate cabs are out of the question due to portability.

    It's funny that despite how much I love my amps I still feel a little wierd when I tell people that I play through Crates. I play a McCarty and an EC strat w/ a very respectable pedal board, yet everytime I tell people I play Crate amps they look at me funny. I might just take off the badges and tell people they're custom.
     
  8. rockon1

    rockon1 Member

    Messages:
    11,473
    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2005
    Location:
    Stamford CT
    For the Palomino a speaker swap. The stock 70/80 aint bad(heck Rivera puts them in a 1300$ Chubster) but better tone is available with a better speaker. Bob
     
  9. mad dog

    mad dog Silver Supporting Member

    Messages:
    10,496
    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2005
    Location:
    Montclair, NJ
    Tubes and speakers can make a world of difference. Normally, I'd leave it at that, not wanting to deface anything. Two exceptions for me:

    -- Added a fixed/bias switch, test points and adjustment pot to a Sewell Wampus Cat. Doug Sewell himself often does this mod. Made an already excellent amp even better.

    -- Picked up a rather beat looking, modded Ampeg Gemini II ... has a larger PT, 6L6s. Now it has a tube rectifier too, instead of the stock SS. In stock form, a sweet-sounding amp. With these changes, even better (IMHO).
     
  10. T-Bro

    T-Bro Member

    Messages:
    17
    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2008
    Location:
    Baltimore, MD
    What speaker should I try?
     
  11. rockon1

    rockon1 Member

    Messages:
    11,473
    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2005
    Location:
    Stamford CT
    Thats a difficult question to answer. Depends on your tastes,music styles,etc. Speakers make about the single biggest change and getting the "wrong" one will be immediately apparent.That said I happen to think the amp sounds great with an Eminance Tonespotter in it though. Decents low end,nice mids and enough highs to be able to get a wide variety of tones out of the amps controls(presence switch,boost function etc) without being harsh. Lets see what others are using in it. Hopefully some will chime in. Bob
     

Share This Page