Other Amps

NAD! 1960 Fender Vibrasonic

26

Awesome amp, btw! I gigged several 1x15s. The only challenge is they are crazy beamy. You have to be 20' from it to hear it right. I always wanted to try a sheet of plexi, but I hate the idea of carrying ANOTHER thing to gigs. I like them turned around and pointing into a corner or turned completely around on a tilt-back stand. Beamy-ness notwithstanding, my '54 5D5 Pro is the best sounding amp I've ever heard.

27

Great amp..just a couple of months newer than the one I had. Very loud and clean for steel guitar. I don't like the way that added bias pot is wired. Have your tech redo it, and have him check the JBL. The impedance of the original would have been 8 ohms, but this one has been reconed and might be 8 ohm now. See if he can tell who made the cone kit too. Only the real D series JBL kits are as good as the original, but some of the aftermarket kits are worse than others.

28

You'll have to dig up 5 of those old push-on style tube shields. Good luck with that.

30

Did you ever get this worked out? No need for a footswitch. Put a plug in and attach the 2 poles together. If it's RCA, cut one off that old VCR cable and twist the wires together. If it's 1/4" bridge it inside the plug and just stick it in. I had a bridged RCA stuck to my speaker magnet for years because I didn't want to bother with the footswitch.

– charlie chitlins

I sure did - I found a RCA footswitch soon after my previous post. Works great. Great tip, though! Much appreciated, Charlie!

31

Great amp..just a couple of months newer than the one I had. Very loud and clean for steel guitar. I don't like the way that added bias pot is wired. Have your tech redo it, and have him check the JBL. The impedance of the original would have been 8 ohms, but this one has been reconed and might be 8 ohm now. See if he can tell who made the cone kit too. Only the real D series JBL kits are as good as the original, but some of the aftermarket kits are worse than others.

– Billy Zoom

Thanks, Billy, I'll get my tech on it. I bought those vintage tube shields you linked, too. Much appreciated!

My apologies to all for not providing a video yet - It's been a rough few weeks with both the wife and myself under the weather. Hopefully, I'll have some time to put a video up this coming weekend.

32

You don't need a footswitch or shorted plug to use the Tremolo. That's just on the later amps with optical Tremolos. This amp has the crossover Tremolo that alternately pulses lows and highs...Some people erroneously refer to it as harmonic Tremolo.

33

great amp...love that trem...nears maggie type lushness...fender style

cheers

34

It seems to have been simply a question of enabling the Tremolo with the RCA footswitch (an affordable $19.32 + shipping). Prior to adding the footswitch, I fiddled with the Speed, Intensity and Presence knobs without success. To clarify, I don't believe I need the footswitch to use the Tremolo now that the Tremolo has been enabled. I'll test that theory tomorrow by removing the RCA footswitch from the Vibrasonic.

Playing the Vibrasonic with my '64 Reverb Unit, I'm in glorious surf heaven.

35

Gorgeous amp! Any idea what it weighs?

38

The D130 has an eleven pound magnet.

39

The footswitch does not enable the Tremolo. You were doing something wrong before.

40

Nor does the Presence knob have anything to do with Tremolo. It's a high frequency tone control and it's always active.

41

The footswitch does not enable the Tremolo. You were doing something wrong before.

– Billy Zoom

In that case, let's try to solve this mystery. I'll gladly be the first to admit to operator error. Wouldn't be the first time.

Here's what I did do:

  1. Guitar cable inserted into port on the Vibrato channel (not Normal channel).
  2. Turned on the amp.
  3. Gave it time to warm up.
  4. Adjusted all Vibrato channel's control knobs: Volume - 3, Treble - 5, Bass - 5, Speed - 5 (then 10), Intensity - 5 (then 10), Presence - 5 (then 10).
  5. Strummed the guitar (guitar Volume control knob at 8, Tone control knob at 10).

Fair enough about the Presence knob.

I didn't touch anything on the Normal channel - should I have inserted my guitar cable into the Normal channel first and adjusted the controls (Vol, Treble, Bass) ? I assumed (maybe incorrectly) that the Normal channel had no control over the Vibrato.

I have a pedal board, but none of my pedals were activated at the time (EP Booster, Carbon Copy, Octafuzz, OCD).

What else could I have been doing wrong?

Here's the specs from Ampwares:

Fender Brownface Vibrasonic Model/Circuit Number: 5G13, 5G13, 6G13-A Years of Production: 1959 – 1963 Era: Brownface Configuration: Combo Controls: Brown forward facing w/ white screened labels, controls numbered 1-10 Knobs: Brown Round Faceplate

Front: 5G13: Normal: In, In, Bass, Treb, Vol – Vibrato: In, In, Bass, Treb, Vol, Speed, Intensity – Presense – Pilot Lamp ; 6G13-A: Normal: In, In, Vol, Treb, Bass – Vibrato: In, In, Vol, Treb, Bass, Speed, Intensity – Presense – Pilot Lamp Rear: 5G13: Ground Sw, Fuse (3A), Power Sw, Standby Sw, Speaker Jack, Vibrato Jack ; 6G13-A: Ground Sw, Fuse (3A), Power Sw, Standby Sw, Speaker Jack, Ex. Speaker Jack, Vibrato Jack ((to turn on and off Vibrato by foot?)) Cabinet

Dimensions: 20 x 25 x 10¼ Hardware: Large Chassis Straps 5 5/8” Handle: Brown Plastic Feet: Glides Corners:

In any case, I have the Tremolo working now thanks to the RCA footswitch.

42

Yes, the brown amp 'trem' if you can call it that... on browns and whites from I guess teh Vibrolux on up is a complex sound that is really more tone shifting than pitch shifting or amplitude shifting. Leo had some genius designers back then, sorta like the guy John Hanert who was Laurens Hammond's right hand man in Hammond organ development -- he designed (they say) the also tonally complex and cool Hammond chorus sound C-1 C -2 and killer C-3 setting

43

It alternatey pulses bass and treble...bass up/treble down, treble up/bass down, etc. It's just a crossover network.

44

When you're not using Tremolo, use the Normal channel...it sounds better. The crossover is never out of the circuit.

45

Ah, cool - good to know! Thanks, Billy!


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