Other Amps

Haven’t had the ol’ CVR out in awhile.

51

Anyone else besides me like the Normal channel better than the Bright channel?

Well, besides me and Moyer, lol, since he recommends snipping the bright cap off the Bright channel...

52

The Bright Channel could be needed in a heavily draped, padded, furnished room with lots of audience, or within a Combo to cut through...maybe for recording to Tape but that is the least likely.

The more you spend time with it, you will see all the permutations for which it was designed to provide an option.

As I stated earlier, I believe the CVR to be extraordinarily Bright, brighter than most 6L6 amps ... God save us from the Bright Channel!

I have those controls set for use with my Casady Bass, and it actually sounds quite nice at the volumes before everything is just too much for the space you are in...

53

"God save us from the Bright Channel!"

Amen, brother!!

I was thinking the same thing, just use the bright "channel" as a bright "switch" if necessary. Since reverb and trem are on both channels, no need to clip the bright cap. Options.

I wonder, would removing the bright cap make the bright channel sound just like the normal channel? If so, why bother?

54

I understand the “mod bug” I too have it. I’ve never Played through this amp but it seems like if you change the Speakers, the tubes, get rid of the reverb, change the circuit, you have a decent sounding amp?

55

I played mine basically stock for a year. I wanted a 6L6 amp Combo with Tube Reverb and Tube Trem....that I could lift!

I sent the first boutique Amp attempt back to the manufacturer....

That being said, I have changed 3 components on the circuit board, and tried different tubes.

I did put on some Beam Blockers, which are an accessory.

I like that I can understand what I did, and that I took my time with it. And that it is versatile.

But, I do agree with your analysis...Just change everything...Ha!

56

Oh, it's a good sounding amp out of the box.

The cheap OEM tubes make it noisy- not the amp's fault, Fender's fault.

the speakers are fine, for lower volumes/home playing. But if you turn up at all... I like tighter bass. That's Jensens fault (actually Fender's fault for speccing the P10R, this amp should have P10Qs in it). Just trying to save money.

Now the reverb IS the amp's fault... but luckily there's an easy and cheap fix.

This amp, like the venerated Vibro-King and quite popular Pro Junior, was designed by Bruce Zinky. He doesn't make crap. Fender cut corners to cut costs... when Zinky left Fender, he started Supro amps... and made the Supro Tremolectric, which was what the VK was SUPPOSED to be, before Fender cut corners.

NOW... the reason the amp is unique in the Fender line-up is this: is much more a "brownface" amp circuit than a blackface one (so is the VK. The PJ is like a mini-marshall lol). That's why so many guys dig it, despite it's (fixable) issues: it doesn't sound like all the other BF amps.... Princeton, Deluxe Reverb, Pro Reverb, Super Reverb... it's got it's own thing going on, mostly with more rounded highs and earlier breakup owing to preamp resistors and no negative feedback loop.

If anyone is at all familiar with the Super-Sonic 22, the CVR normal channel sounds alot like the SS22 Vintage (clean) channel, with the FAT switch engaged (ditto for the Vibro-king and it's fat switch)

With a few small changes, the CVR really does seem to be a "Vibro-King Jr", or the VK's "little brother", if you will. But smaller, lighter, and not as hella-loud.

57

The question that I have is why they changed the circuitry from the Vibroverb that it is based upon. That was a great little amp!

58

I have always joked that Fender had a mountain of parts inventory leftover in the US warehouse, and Zinky was told to make something new and different out of it..

59

The question that I have is why they changed the circuitry from the Vibroverb that it is based upon. That was a great little amp!

– Don Birchett

The VV RI was not a big seller. So at that point, I think Twangmeister is right- they told Zinky to make something out of it, and the CVR was born.

BTW, it's not supposed to be a Vibroverb or even a Vibrolux Reverb (hence the "custom" moniker), despite the fact is uses the VV RI PCB.

You have to keep in mind, while Fender vintage-nuts loved the VV RI, the general public is very different... hence the huge sales of the entire Hot Rod series all these years. Those aren't Fender vintage-snobs buying all those Hot Rods...

60

So... this amp is pretty effing loud. For years I have read about "lack of headroom", "breaks up early", etc... by the time this amp breaks up, it's far too loud to be using at home, and while it would probably be fine for gigs, it wouldn't need to be any louder than that! I'm a little surprised (and disappointed) it doesn't give up the goods at a lower overall volume. but that's what 45W gets you. I guess this is more of a gigging amp?

Not to mention, when you're that loud, those crappy P10Rs can't handle the bass. I feel like I'm going to HAVE TO change speakers to even be able to give it a fair shake. Which I expected. But for me, it's unusable at gig levels with the P-10Rs... UNLESS I'm playing only clean... and the best way I have found to do that on this one is to turn the amp ALL THE WAY UP, then just crack open the guitar volume. Gorgeous cleans that way, and not too much bass for the speakers to handle. This is how Jim Campilongo runs his Princetons, and it works well!

61

Take your time...

The first speaker mod I made was to fit the 4 ohm C15N in with a second baffle.

I like having the pair of AlNiCos, too.

Eventually, I had a MojoTone Extension Cabinet made...

62

Well, my first stop will be the reverb. I'm not doing the cap mod... yet. I'm going to just swap the pan out first, which is also in the Moyer Mods, for a 9AB3C1B. I'd just rather not solder on a PCB unless absolutely necessary (which it WILL be when I add a bias pot).

So then it's speakers. Still debating, but I have always wanted to try a mix of alnico and ceramic, so right now I'm thinking of going with a Legend 1028K (which sounds like a worn-in Jensen P10Q, basically, warmer than the Jensens RIs), and a Weber Legacy 10 (which is basically a greenback/ceramic.) I've read nothing but raves about both speakers, and I've heard a CVR with a Celestion greenback and a P10Q in it, and it sounded very good.

63

Read start to finish right through, this is a funny thread.

64

Read start to finish right through, this is a funny thread.

– Proteus

Absolutely. And as someone who was always eyeing the CVR latently this thread completely put me off in the end and saved me money (and trouble, disappointment, time...). I don’t think I want an amp that’s great if you change almost anything. I like affordable good sounding gear and my 90s Made in the U.K. Laney VC30 sounds nothing less than great. All original but the tubes. Amazing cleans and break-up, fantastic reverb, solidly built. Used prices are ridiculously low over here. Sorry for hi-jacking.

66

Oh, it could never replace my Supersonic 22 which is AWESOME. Love that thing. I just hadn't owned 10s in awhile, but did not realize how loud the CVR really is... it is not a home amp, unless you play clean only (which I don't, most of the time).

Now.... with my BAND is where the CVR could come in handy, with new speakers. However, I'd rather hunt down a used Supersonic 60 for that, having now heard the CVR.

I wouldn't have even bought it, but I couldn't turn down $400. I could've flipped it for $700 immediately and almost doubled my money. But, this whole life thing is about experiencing different things, so I figure I'll live with it a little while, try some speakers, and "experience" it :)

67

The CVR stayed in the product line basically unchanged for 20 years...

How many other Fender Amps can say that?

That either means it was uniquely popular, or that the Purchasing Department accidently added a few extra zeroes to that last build Parts Order for the VVRI!

68

"The CVR stayed in the product line basically unchanged for 20 years..."

Alot of truth and common sense in that statement.

Ditto the entire "Hot Rod" series, even before they were officially called "Hot Rods" (my buddy has a Fender Blues Deville 4x10 that's awesome, it was a pre-cursor to the Hot Rods)

69

I just went through my Capacitor parts bag, and I don't have the .010uF/10000pF caps to lower the Bass control mid-points...

Been a while since I had the chassis out, I'll need to check if the "big ones" are finally due for replacement, too...she is now 10+ years old.

That kit of parts is easy to find online...several Sellers...

70

I forgot...one of our local Music Stores had a brand new CVR on the Showroom floor.

Not the new '68 Vibrolux RI that replaced it in the product line, this one is a couple years old from the end of the 2015/16 production.

It had a few minor updates compared to mine, newer suppliers and new ways of making purchased parts, etc.

71

OK, the P10Rs have broken in quite nicely, BUT... they still can't handle the bass the CVR puts out. They are fine for home volumes, but once you turn up to 3, they started farting out. They just can't handle the volume. So going to put new speakers in.

I have a 12" C-Rex in my other amp that I love, so I was thinking of 2 C-Rex 10" for the CVR. I'm stuck between those and the Weber Legacy 10", which apparently are the "ultimate Greenback", according to many people....

72

If I had my notes, I could add something more...

With 12AX7s in the Pre-Amp circuit the Gain was quite substantial. 3-3 1/2 was probably full power for all practical purposes on those tubes. At about 7, if I remember right, is when you finally saturate the Power Tubes.

And that is about where it is now on mine after swapping the Pre-Amp resistor, but you get more range to find a setting...it takes twice as long to saturate, and I am using 5751s.

In between 3 1/2 and 7 was this "touch sensitive" zone. Mind you, the Pre-Amp is all jacked up. I smile when I see the description "touch sensitive"...Ha!

Touch Sensitive means you need technique...Or you get Mud Soup...

73

I rolled all the preamp tubes, including the PI, and I prefer the stock values in all the positions.

This amp is loud enough that I don't need more headroom (my "clean" is actually "semi-dirty", if I want CLEAN clean like alot of these Gretsch guys want, I'll plug into the lo input or turn down).

My 1st stop will be speakers. Then I'll likely address the reverb issue. I really need the speakers tho, so I can use it with the band, and see if it's something I'm going to want to keep for that application- because it's not really a home amp for me; my SS22 is perfect for that... I just needed more headroom so I could use a clean boost to bump up solos live... the CVR definitely has that headroom, even tho it's know for it's "early breakup", compared the the 22-watter.

BTW/FWIW, the CVR Normal channel sounds ALOT like the Supersonic Normal channel, with the Fat switch engaged. ALOT.

74

Mine is stock but I did the Moyer mod (if it came with crappy tubes it still has crappy tubes). Post Moyer mod it has lush reverb, no hiss, more headroom but I'm stuck with the bright channel only. What can I do so tone down the bright? Like is there a tube or two I could replace to take some of the brightness off?

Even with the bright thing going on I really like this amp.

75

Mine is stock but I did the Moyer mod (if it came with crappy tubes it still has crappy tubes). Post Moyer mod it has lush reverb, no hiss, more headroom but I'm stuck with the bright channel only. What can I do so tone down the bright? Like is there a tube or two I could replace to take some of the brightness off?

Even with the bright thing going on I really like this amp.

– Mr_Christopher

You said it has the Moyer Mods? Isn't one of those mods clipping the bright cap from the bright channel? That would help alot.


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