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#28233 by gbheil
Tue Apr 08, 2008 5:44 pm
I summon the living dead tube heads to answer another stupid question!
Damn, New amp right, when I play to the 8th & 10th frets 1st & 2nd strings general area on me Strat, I'm getting this god awful rattle ,sounds like tin. :( It is not environmental its my "new" amp :x ! when I bend these notes it's even worse. :evil: As the amp warms up more with time this phenom deminishes somewhat. also more bass seems to deminish it some what. I shot a E mail to the manufacturer but have not heard back from them as of yet. Any opinions as too the sourse and cure?
they need toadd a cryin face to the list. :twisted:

#28244 by jw123
Tue Apr 08, 2008 6:36 pm
George, Does the guitar rattle or do the strings die when you play without an amp?

On my strat I have to set the action a little higher.

Thats curious cause I just took my little amp in for a buzz when I play lower notes. I think my speaker is going.

If you have a way unplug the internal speaker and plug the amp to those pa speakers you have and see if its still doing it. It could be the speaker.

It could be something loose in the chassis of the amp. When its cooled down see if anything feels loose. Speaker bolts, chassis bolts

Have you been out in the shed diming that sucker out already?

#28247 by gbheil
Tue Apr 08, 2008 7:04 pm
I have the action set near the lowest specs that came from Fender, and best I can tell no fret buzz. I have been pushing her but not too hard yet.
I have unplugged the speaker and run through the PA and Through a pair of 15" two ways, just foolin around. Seems to me that rattle for lack of better term was still present. It only does it in that specific octave range though. I,m going to play the heck out of her at practice tonight. And investigate further as you suggested tomorrow. Think I'll Flip her on her head and pull then replace the tubes. maybe something is not seated well.
Thanks for your input.

#28262 by gbheil
Tue Apr 08, 2008 9:24 pm
Put her thru the PA before going to pick up my sons from school. No rattle at all with the internal speaker unplugged. Tomorrow I will look for loose stuff in the inside. Makes me feel a little better anyway.

#28559 by jw123
Fri Apr 11, 2008 2:15 pm
Well to add to the tube thread, I bit the bullet and ordered a set of THD Yellowjackets for my Mesa. These are little step down transformers so I can use EL 84 power tubes instead of 6L6s. I have been told that you can blend them with the 6L6s to get some different tones. I also dug out the old Sholtz Power Soak and hooked it to my amp. It actually sounds pretty good so I can get those dimed out amp sounds at reasonable levels. The quest continues...................................................................................

#28593 by Shredd6
Fri Apr 11, 2008 7:28 pm
Cool man!! I've heard of people doing that. You'll have to let us know how it sounds ok.

I don't have the time right now JW, but later I'm going to be giving you a huge thank you. You've inspired me to find a preamp setup that will help a lot of people who have a problem with the muddiness in their Mesa. It's absolutely stunning, but I want to give the full story, and I just don't have the time right now.

I can now say that I guarantee you I can suck the mud right out of a Mesa and turn it into a high-end Marshall sound, and better still, have the option of a Marshall sound with rectifier flavor.

I have a really cool post coming later JW.

#28641 by Shredd6
Sat Apr 12, 2008 5:57 am

Image Image Image ImageImage

I'll explain about this setup later. But this will take the mud completely out of a Mesa. Something happens with the Tesla and the 5751 that doesn't happen with any other combination. The highs cut through, and the Bass becomes adjustable (as opposed to going from big bass to astronomical bass). I will definitely be using this setup to record as well as the other setup. They are 2 totally different sounds. It's like I have 2 amps now.

#28791 by Shredd6
Mon Apr 14, 2008 7:26 am
Huh.. Odd, but my preamp lineup doesn't show on my computer anymore..

Ok well.. I was going to give the story of how I came to this conclusion. It is kind of ironic, and there were a few things that happened to get me to this point, but I guess the most important thing to learn is to really get to know your preamp, and to always keep an open mind when experimenting with it.

JW.. I really do want to thank you in a big way. I understand your frustration, I've heard it many times before, and I've gone through it myself. I do know other people who own Mesas and have the same frustrations. Although I may be a freak who likes the mud, there are many who don't. But I would have never even tried this if it wasn't for you. I really want you to find that sound that bad.

So far, the best advice I can give you is to score a Tesla ecc83 for V1, and a 5751 triple mica for V2. Your solos will cut through regardless of what power tubes you run it with. This combination is extremely responsive and has a killer initial attack. I used a long plate in V3 and a regular ecc83 for my effects loop because I didn't want to take away anything else that the 5751 already does. I personally believe that there should only be one tube that has a MU rating of a 5751 in your preamp.

There's no rhyme or reason why the 5751 and the Tesla combined sounds the way it does in my mind. It just is the way it is. Mud gone.. I hated both tubes combined with anything else. But together, they just kick a LOT of ass.

If you look at the design of a Tesla and a RFT, you'll see a similarity in plate design, so my next experiment will be to see if I get the same result with an RFT in V1.

Either way.. It does cost some cash to score these tubes, I found it to be highly worth it. But individually paired with certain other tubes in the wrong spot they will sound like CRAP.

For this preamp setup, I paid $100. But I was patient in finding good deals.

#28844 by jw123
Mon Apr 14, 2008 8:41 pm
Shredd, I just got my Yellowjackets. I got a quartet. Im going to try them in different combinations with the stock 6L6s. From the instruction packet if you use all yellowjackets you get a Class A amp. Class As seem to be more touch responsive to me than the standard A B amps. I'll let you know where Im at in a few days.

Thanks for the preamp post. Since I went with the power soak and started running the master in the 5-7 range my amp has come alive, thats why I wanted to play with the power tubes and also detune the amp slightly. I have also been using the Strat more. My Les Paul has the T-500 pickup which is a very high gain pup. My Strat has a couple of Seymour Duncan mini humbuckers which go from clean to mean better than the Lester. Anyway, I'll add my 2 cents about Yellowjackets in a day or so.

#28868 by Shredd6
Tue Apr 15, 2008 2:05 am
Cool sh*t man. I definitely want to hear about your experience with the Yellowjackets. It sounds like an awesome idea.

#28891 by jw123
Tue Apr 15, 2008 1:47 pm
Shredd, I played on the yellowjackets last night for a couple of hours.

I put 4 in the Triple by themselves. I will say if anyone gets these thinking they will lower the volume dramatically they will be dissapointed. I pulled 6 6L6s and replaced them with 4 EL84s and it seems almost as loud at the same settings. I use the loop as an attenuator on my amp, with the 6L6s I have to set the loop a little under halfway to get into the power tubes. The EL84s seem to come alive at a lower loop setting. I can run the loop at around a quarter up and feel and hear the same type of breakup as the 6L6s at halfway.

Shredd to my ears they clean up the mud some, but and this is a big but, you seem to hear the pick attack a lot more than with the other power tubes. The amp seems to respond more to how hard or soft you pick than with the stock tubes. It also has more of a shimmer to the sound, kinda of more like a Vox AC30, which makes sense cause they use an EL84 tube. The difference is the rec has a lot more preamp gain than a Vox.

So on first listening, I would not recomend these for lowering volume, if thats all someone wants to do spend your money on an attenuator. I have an old Power Soak, but I am looking real hard at a Weber unit. You can look them up. On the other hand if you want to change the tone of your amp these tubes give a rec a whole different sound, more chimmy, is that a word. Harmonics jump out more, kind of like the guitar on Disturbed Down With The Sickness. Those harmonics that kind of jump out at you. Pinch harmonics are a lot easier with these tubes. It does lose a little bassiness, but I really didnt change the bass back on the eq, I just left it the same. The rec will get these sounds at higher volumes and higher gain, but with these tubes it gets them at a lower volume.

In a few days I will try a mix of the yelowjackets and 6L6s. I just have to let my ears rest a few days.

The only negative thing I can say is that I heard a few odd pops out of the amp when I was idleing and not playing.

#29002 by Shredd6
Wed Apr 16, 2008 5:04 am
Well, I can tell you I'm pretty much done with my amp. I had a couple of people over to hear the amp, and the response I got was, "If you change that sound I'll kick your ass!! That's the best your amp has ever sounded!" (the Tesla/ 5751 setup)

So I guess I'm done.

Man, it really was fun to experiment with the Rec. But I found a killer sound that I'll get freakin' shot if I change it. Hahaha.. Actually I believe the words were more along the lines of, "Hang you by the balls in the desert."

Since I bought everything in pairs or quads, I have all backups in order to have this sound for a while.

I still plan on using the RCA setup to record secondary guitar parts, but I guess this is my main sound now, and I've gotta tell you, I'm 100% happy with my Mesa. This is a kickass sound.

I think a reinvented sound inspires different angles to songwriting that I may not have thought of doing before. They kept saying, "hey dude, what riff is that?" And my answer was " I don't know? I'm just making sh*t up." "Yea, well don't forget it, keep that riff."

So it'll be interesting to see what I write with this setup. I'm really excited about it.

Now it's on to re-wiring my guitars. My good 'ol reliable Super Distortion sounds the best with this setup. So I need one in my Baritone. I have 2- Squier Stagemasters, A Westone, and my LTD to re-wire. So I need to get busy with that. I've got some Duncans I want to hear through this setup as well. Still haven't played my Strat through it.

JW, thanks again for inspiring me to try this. I really couldn't tell you why I picked these 2 for V1 and V2 to try. I didn't even like these tubes at first. I knew the Tesla was high strung, but I had no clue what the 5751 would do with it. It always just seemed to muddy things in the Mesa, and bog things down. (however it did always sound good in my Marshall)

I guess the most important thing I did when experimenting like this, was to not just come to a conclusion and set it in stone. I kept an open mind with everything.. And the result was unpredictable, but rewarding. We both seem to be the same way in that respect, so I have no doubt you'll find a good sound that you'll like.

Keep me posted on the Yellowjackets. I'm still really interested in what they do.

#29414 by Shredd6
Mon Apr 21, 2008 5:41 am

I just won a NOS NIB Mullard CV4004 on ebay!!

(I know.. I know. THE NEW PHONE BOOK'S HERE!!!)

But this is a FAT score.

Check this out.


It has what's called box plates, and this particular one has smooth (flat) box plates. I can't wait to hear it. I hear these things kick major ass.

Anyway.. I just had to get the excitement off my chest.

:D :D :D :D :D

F**K man.. I guess I'm not done yet. I've gotta try this thing out in V1,V2 and V3. Let the fun continue.

#33435 by Shredd6
Sat Jun 07, 2008 9:27 pm
And continue it did..

JW. I just thought I'd post this here instead of hijacking Ezen's thread. But this post isn't necessarily directed right at you. It's more of a post to explain what I've been up to in my tube quest.

During the time the CV4004 came, I was buying NOS tubes like a Madman. They were coming to the house 2-3 a day. Singles, pairs, quads, of all kinds. I have backups for my backups for my backups..And then there's my backups.

Experimenting with them was a lot to handle. I had to carefully clean half of them, and I went through 2-boxes of latex surgical gloves. I was just determined to get to know the differences between a shitload of various NOS tubes, some expensive, some not so much, and some a little on the obscure side.

Eventually I came up with a system to break down exactly how to create what I wanted.

First process:
I test them in my Marshall so I can hear what they sound like individually. Then I put them in 1 of 3 categories. Bass, Mid, or High. A simple basic categorization.
What I noticed about my Mesa is, anytime you put a tube that is rich in Bass tones ahead of one that isn't, the result isn't as optimal as it should be. But without the Marshall, I would have had a tough time determining exactly what category they belonged in, because you're dealing with 4 tubes running at the same time (effects loop don't count). It would've taken forever. And I probably would have given up.

So far Mullards and Brimars are the only tubes I've put in the Mid category. And their clarity is second to none. Mullards are the kings of clarity, warm mids, and that sparkly thing.

Most USA made tubes seem to be rich in Bass tones; RCA, G.E., Sylvania, Raytheon, Tung Sol, etc.. Even though they do have crisp highs, it's the amount of Bass that I listen to the most when I test them. Their mids are more on the Low-Mid side. Long-plates have the most Bass present.

Then there's the ones that pierce your ears.. The highs are where they excel with flying colors. Teslas, RFTs, and a couple of others I'll explain later. If a tube pierces a hole in my head in the Marshall, it's a V-1 tube. At first I hated it. I almost wrote off my Teslas because of how awful they sounded in my Marshall (and in my Mesa with the wrong tubes behind it).

But once I had everything categorized, I started to use this method to experiment:

V1- Highs
V2- Mids
V3- Bass

The results were beyond what I ever expected. The trick to your preamp is to keep the tubes rich in Bass tones in the back.

Let's say you have an RCA, a Tung Sol Long-plate, and a Mullard to work with. You wouldn't want to position them like this:

V2- Mullard
V3- Tung Sol

The Mullard would just drag down the tone. The Mullard would lose it's sparkle, the Bass tones of the RCA and Tung Sol would be overpowering, and all of the highs would flatten out. Instead you would want to do this:

V1- Mullard
V3- Tung Sol

Now the highs and mids of the Mullard can't be overpowered, and believe me there would be more than enough Bass tones in the mix. Not to mention that because of the clarity of the Mullard, the highs in the RCA and Tung Sol, will be present and in some cases enhanced. So you get the best of what all the tubes have to offer by positioning them this way.

If you're looking for a sound that cuts through and has adjustable highs beyond belief, a Tesla or RFT should be in your V-1. This is my favorite way to go. Because it's one thing to have more than enough highs to work with, than to have not enough and not be able to do anything about it. Although Mullards and RCAs are really good tubes to use in V-1, they just can't provide the highs that these tubes do. RFTs break up earlier than Teslas, but the Teslas have a little more of a high frequency to them. So it's a personal choice. I like the Tesla because I like to have an extremely clean sound in my clean channel, and the RFT will break up quicker.

There are only 4 tubes that I religiously use in my V1 nowadays. The Tesla and RFT are a given. But I did run across a G.E. 6681 that had the same characteristics and it was dirt cheap. I'm not too sure if all 6681's sound like this, so I usually don't recommend someone just run out and buy one.

Interesting story:

2-Weeks ago I was sold a tube listed as a Telefunken. Lo and behold it wasn't. So I contacted the seller, and he swore he had another tube that sounds exactly like a Telefunken although it wasn't. It was an EI- Silver Plate NOS. And he agreed to send it to me for free, and I keep the other one as well.

When I researched the EI silver-plate online, everything I came across said, "don't put one in any high-fi application, extremely microphonic, and high strung, not recommended for guitar amps".
So now I'm thinking "great, now I don't get a Telefunken, and I'm being sent some microphonic tube that's gonna sound like crap and I won't be able to use it."

When it came, I plugged it in the Marshall, and sure enough it freakin pierced a hole in my ears. But I didn't notice any microphonics. So I plugged it in my Mesa V-1. BLAM!! Perfection!! That tube kicks a lot of ass!! So I turned around and bought his other one the next day. $20.

I can't recommend an EI Silver-plate to anyone based on the massive response against them, but these 2 that this guy had were golden, I wouldn't have believed it if I didn't hear it myself. I still doubt it sounds like a Telefunken, but I don't care. I'll take it.

So anyway, that's what I've been up to. I might have some tubes for sale later, but I want to have a bigger stock on hand before I do. I've already sold some to a few people, and I wanna make sure I still have backups for my backups, for my backups. :P

These are the 2 preamp setups I'll be using this year:

For practice:

V-1 EI-ecc83 Silver-Plate
V-2 Mullard ecc83
V-3 Tung Sol 12ax7a Long-plate
V-4 Mullard 12ax7a/7025
V-5 RCA 12ax7a

For live and recording:

V-1 Tesla ecc83
V-2 Mullard CV4004
V-3 G.E. 12ax7a Long-plate
V-4 Mullard 12at7
V-5 Mullard CV4024


#33448 by gbheil
Sat Jun 07, 2008 10:44 pm
Man I hope you stop tinkering long enough to eat something. :shock:

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