Other Amps

Amp Question? ,, Princeton Reverb RI?


I have two Princeton Reverb Reissues now.

One is about 8 - 10 yeas old and sounds pretty good volume, loud, good.

I noticed that all the new ones in the last couple of years sound about 2/3rds the volume of the reissues from about 8 years ago.

Why is that?

I recently scored a brand new/ used one from a friend that hardly been played but A/B'd them next to each other this afternoon and the new one is much quieter then the one I had from 2008.

It sounds good but I have to turn the volume up a notch or so to match the older one.

Both have perfect working tubes so it's not the tubes.

Also, it seems that the ones on the floor at most music stores these days seem much quieter too, with some variances.

Does Fender deliberately under bias the amps to save tube life, thus, making them sound weaker?


I liked my recent RI Princeton, (once I stuffed a 12 in it). That is an intersting diffrence... I am guessing the '65 black panel reissue was somewhat different inside that the '68 silver panel reissue. I sort of doubt they intentionally adjust them to just preserve output tubes....


B+ voltages? Speaker the same?


I believe they are and have the same size magnets ,,

I may try hooking up the different speaks to one amp later and see if there is a difference too? ,,, but I noticed that the majority of recent PRR's seem to sound much quieter.

In fact, about a year or so ago, when I bought a second back up, I had to take it back cause it was much quieter, and also the Reverb completely went out on one, then worked, then went out and it wasn't any jacks or anything.

I took it to a renowned amp authorized Fender repair guy and he was baffled too?

Some inconsistency inside?

Also, there was a period back about 7-8 years ago where there were complaints of this "F-rting" sound coming out of some of the runs of this amp.

One of my friends had to get a replacement from Fender.

Maybe that has something to do with it?

Maybe they changed something?

Remember that?


Be interesting to put a meter on the power transformer and compare voltages. Speakers can look the same and have different efficiencies. Some spec must have changed between versions.


Rectifier tubes the same?


Looks like the '65 reissue came with a tube rectifier, a Jensen speaker and was rated at 15 watts. The '68 reissue has a SS rectifier, a Celestion 10 thirty speaker and is rated at 12 watts. Are the amps the same reissue?


They are different, the op said they are both '65 ris. I wonder if the speakers are the same, then maybe it's a difference in bias/tubes.


If you could use a multimeter to check the resistances of the pots where you have them set, that would be interesting.


I played a Princeton Reverb Reissue (brand new about 2 years ago) had an alnico speaker. I didn't think it had enough volume for a gig (band is not loud) and it broke up very fast. It ended up being returned. Could have been the speaker spl was low or the tubes weren't the best. I bet better tubes or at least a more efficient speaker would have helped. I bet the speakers on the older one is different.


Someone else can articulate this better than I can, but in the past, Fender configured some amps so that most of the volume would come on at the lower range of the volume pots. This gave the illusion that the amp was more powerful than one where the volume had to be turned up higher to reach the same level. In comparing some of the same models from different periods, past a certin point on the dials the volume levels were the same. This could be the case with the PRs. I had a DR from about 1990 and it was very loud at 3 or 4. After that the volume increase was minimal. I was told that it was done for marketing reasons.


Swap the speakers first. Some speakers are twice as loud as others.


The onset of loudness has to do with the taper of the potentiometers. Audio taper pots are logrythmic, and it makes the amp loud right away. Linear taper pots are just that, so "4" will sound twice as loud as "2", and the amp will get louder more gradually and evenly. I've never compared the two amps side by side. Specs can change throughout the run of an amp. I wouldn't be shocked to see different taper pots in the Volume position. This would certainly account for the difference in volume at the same settings. You can also make any of these louder by swapping a Weber 10F150 for the OEM unit. Much louder than the SICA made Jensen C10R that came stock in alot of these.


I have a Super Champ XD that was too bright and not loud enough for a 15 watt amp. I changed the speaker to a weber 10A125 10 inch bass speaker, replaced the power tubes to JJ6v6s and put in a Mercury Magnetics FBFDR-O output transformer. Amp now has beautiful tone and more volume. I have been gigging with this amp weekly for several years with no problems.

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