Who loves Ampeg VT-40s, V-2s, VT-22, V-4 amps??

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by dewman, Jan 13, 2006.


  1. dewman

    dewman Gold Supporting Member

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    Got a 1974 VT-40 4x10 and it is the best sleeper amp out there. Gives fat fat tone and can dial in Fender tones and some Marshall. Tubes are cookin at nearly 600 Volts, so this baby is loud and clean, but at 60 watts still breaks up at 4.

    Redone totally by Todd Sharp of Nashville Amplifier Service (props to Todd who did a wonderful job and is a great guy and a great player to boot). Speakers replaced with 2 celestion vintage 10s, 2 jensen Neo 10s. Todd put in an accutronics reverb w/ transformer and now has completed the package. I have bought and sold boutique amps because they didn't have the tone and versatility of this amp...running 7581As

    V series amps- Who has them and who loves them??? Any mods, upgrades for performance? Suggested things to do to improve the already good tone?

    Anybody play through an old V-series cab??
     
  2. Leonc

    Leonc Wild Gear Hearder Gold Supporting Member

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    Unlike most people who know nothing of or don't care about Ampegs, I'm a nut who loves 'em. My first amp was a VT-40 and I recently aquired one of the same vintage which I'm just crazy about.

    Now that being said, I'm in favor of keeping the prices down by publicly confirming other's suspicions that Ampegs are sucko amps that aren't worth thinking about. So...shooo...move along folks :).
     
  3. drbob1

    drbob1 Silver Supporting Member

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    Got a V4 which is still the big dog for clean sounds (winning out over Fender Twins and Pros, Roland JC120, Bruno 45w Super and UG30, Vox, even the Alessandro because it does have reverb). Mine's modded for 6550s, which is sacrilege but sounds good. Now if I can just get rid of that cabinet rattle...
     
  4. Red Planet

    Red Planet Member

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    I've had my share of em. They are great amps. I've mostly had V4's though I've tinkered around with others. Gotta love the controls on those dudes.

    My last V4 Project was I took a Head had 6550's put in it, went through it electronically and it was so beat up I stripped the cab and stained it a burgandy oak kinda color and painted the faceplate with granite paint and my wife hand painted the control names. Put new Black Knobs on it set it on top of a David Eden 4X10 XLT Bass Cab and made a Studio Bass Rig out of it. I wish I had pics of it. I sold it to my studio buddies and its been there ever since.

    Cool little rig.

    It goes without saying they make killer guitar rigs too.
     
  5. dewman

    dewman Gold Supporting Member

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    Yeah I should probably tone down the love otherwise the Ebayers will drive up the prices!

    Looking for a V2 head soon for , err uhh, portability. I think its like 50 pounds versus the VT-40 which is considerably heavier.

    Didn't know if you guys ever used the Ext. speaker outputs on the V series. with the VT-40 running the 4x10s and a 2x12 Zbest running as well its pretty impressive. Pseudo stereo and big big bottom. Cool experiment to try with a 2x12 or 4x12. Cabs for my amp have to run at 8 ohms, so probably limits one to a decent 2x12.
     
  6. AL30

    AL30 Member

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    Yes Sir. My SB-12 sounds terrible. My Gemini I sounds terrible. And I'm sure the V4 I just picked up will sound equally horrific once it's up and running.

    AL
     
  7. wgs1230

    wgs1230 Fully Intonatable Silver Supporting Member

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    I really love the way the V-series amps sound when they're running properly.

    I don't love hunting down the oddball tubes or trying to find parts to repair the chassis suspension systems.
     
  8. myles111

    myles111 Member

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    These are pretty amazing amps. They were not as popular as Fender. Why? More expensive. If you think a Fender reverb is the standard for what reverb should sound like listen to an Ampeg that has reverb.

    The VT22 will bury a Fender Twin Reverb. They had Altec speakers and a great EQ.

    The Rolling Stones recorded and performed with Ampeg on just about anything you heard in the past.

    The B12/B15 Portaflex bass rigs may be one of the most recorded bass rigs in history.

    The SVT .... well, you cannot write enough about an SVT but as a side note, try a Rickenbacker 360-12 with an SVT for one of the most amazing rhythm guitar rigs you will ever hear.

    I have some Ampeg prints from my files in the data sheets area of my website and will be adding more.
     
  9. Leonc

    Leonc Wild Gear Hearder Gold Supporting Member

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    dewman, FWIW, I bought a V2 last summer. Played it through various configurations of cabs (4x10, 2x12 open, 2x12 closed, 4x12 closed) and nothing sounded better than playing through the VT-40s 4x10 combo cab. After I came to this conclusion, I sold off the V2...Just my 2 cents FWIW.

    AL30 - yes, I can see you understand what a pathetic waste of money, time and energy these Ampegs wind up being. My advice to others - don't waste your resources on Ampegs. STAY AWAY!!!

    :p
     
  10. fjs1962

    fjs1962 Silver Supporting Member

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    I've had V4s, VT22s and VT40s and loved everything about them except the weight ;)
     
  11. ricoh

    ricoh Member

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    I have a VT-22..........It kind of reminds me of the ruby slippers in The Wizard of Oz...................There it is and there it will stay!!!!

    Rico
     
  12. Brick

    Brick Member

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    ...and I bought that V2 from Leonc and regret it everyday.

    Learn from my mistake run, don't walk as far away from these hiddeous beasts as you can.

    ;)
     
  13. Junebug

    Junebug Member

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    I lost a VT22 about 18 years ago. Wish I still had it.
     
  14. Tone_Terrific

    Tone_Terrific Member

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    In spite of the gimmicky tone controls they really don't sound like Fenders or Marshalls so it is best to pass on them if you cannot try them out beside your fave amp.
    There!
    Does that help?


    Except for SVT's which are just about perfect, but too big and expensive to maintain.
     
  15. jzucker

    jzucker Supporting Member

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    I wish some boutique builder would make an ampeg V2 with reverb reissue. I'd like it to be hand-wired. It would be the ultimate clean blues amp ala SRV's texas flood tone. I wouldn't mind getting an older one but they're sometimes hard to fix...
     
  16. Tone Loco

    Tone Loco Silver Supporting Member

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    I'm w/Leon on this one. If I didn't feel for the poor guy who'd have to wrestle it into the garbage truck I would have got rid of my VT40 years ago! Certainly not worth keeping for any sounds to be had in it. Not sure which it sounds worse with, Gibsons or Fenders! :eek:

    Maybe it was only meant to work with those see thru Dan Armstrong's or something. BTW anybody ever play one of those? I've always wondered about the snap-in pickup thing. Not to mention the tone of plexiglass :D
     
  17. OOG

    OOG Member

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    can't stand my Gemini II that i play every day
     
  18. Brick

    Brick Member

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    Hey Zack, making a hand-wired reissue V2 would be tough to do costwise since you can usually find the originals for under $500.

    I wanted to take my V2 and get it a basic health check and the first guy I asked to do it didn't want to work on it. I live an hour away from Pete Cage of Cage Amps so I gave him a call and he really took care of it. He's a really a great guy.

    btw, your book is really helping me break out of some ruts and forcing me to get a better handle on theory. Thanks.
     
  19. dewman

    dewman Gold Supporting Member

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    SO two other techs come to mind- First is Todd Sharp of Nashville Amps which I mentioned before, he is a player of VT-40s and knows hthem in and out and has an ear for tone. Second is Dennis Kager, one of the developers of the V series and an overall amp wizard for Ampeg back in the day. He works out of NJ- a Google search would help find his shop name which I cant remember, something with Central Jersey in the title...

    A handwired V2 would be a bitch since there are like five separate PC boards in the amp. I like mine the way it is,touch sensitive and massive tone like a handwired amp-= and the cool thing is that the boards are easily servicable from either side of chassis since these aluminum panels drop out. SO I have replaced cooked caps, resistors, etc. no problem. Transformers are available reissue from Fliptops.net and Mercury magnetics. Its just the filter caps that are a bitch to figure out since hapf caps are used throughout. Todd knows this territory cold. The only oddball tubes are a 6K11, and 6CG7, which you can get, the others like the 7027A and 12DW7 are in current production. I have 7581As in mine which are really really beefed up 6L6GCs from JAN Philips. Bought from Mike at KCANOS tubes.com.
     
  20. Leonc

    Leonc Wild Gear Hearder Gold Supporting Member

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    dewman - did you need to change any other components (resistors?) when yuou went to the 7581s? Also, why did you switch--was it a case of "there are more decent 7581s around"?
     

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