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ADA MB-1 help

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by reasonbass, Nov 11, 2004.


  1. This for all of those players who used to have one. I have a couple of problems. I just got one off Evilbay. And when I turn it on it says "tubes not ready" . Now this is a normal occurence that's supposed to last a couple seconds. But mine says it for ever. By a stroke of luck and frustration, I figured out that if I flick the on/off swith a couple times, it works fine. But now I can only get the clean sound of the tube section. When I press the distortion I get a faint sound.

    Can anyone rember that happening to their's? If so will putting new pre-amp tubes fix it? What about the never ending "tubes not ready" fiasco?

    Any help will be greatly appreciatied. :help:
     
  2. how long is it doing that? Mine takes usually about 25-35 seconds to be 'ready'...

    If the distortion form the tube section is faint, I would guess you need to replace the tube...just my guess.

    ALso, soudns simple, but are you making sure your input and output levels from the tube section are set high enough to get a good hot signal?
     
  3. vbass

    vbass

    May 7, 2004
    Bay Area, CA
    Mine takes about 30 secs to warm up as well. As far as the tube distortion not being loud enough, I would try replacing it. When I first got mine I had a similar problem with the solid state side being a lot louder than the tube side, once I replaced it all was well. It's still not AS loud as the solid state side but I just adjust that in the settings and get the levels to be similar. Also, just food for thought, the distortion isn't really ideal in my opinion, so you may want to play it clean and add distortion through a pedal/effect unit or something. I've gotten much better results that way.
     
  4. It stays on "tubes not ready" the whole time. Put it this way. I left it on with the "tubes not ready" and went out for 3 hours. When I came back the message was still on.

    I hope its just the tubes. Cause I really like features on that pre. I'm gonna take it to a tech tomorrow. Then I'm gonna contact the place on ebay where I got it from. They said it was in good working condition. But it came kinda messed up. And it wasn't UPS's fault either. It was packed very well. What do you gentlemen think?

    Thanks for the replies.
    :hyper:
     
  5. Id say that sounds like a good plan...

    Vbass - it's interesting that you said your S.S. section is louder than your tube section, because mine seems to be reversed. If I use only the solid state side, I have to set the input and output really high, but the distortion section is louder at lower settings...

    How do you adjust that?
     
  6. vbass

    vbass

    May 7, 2004
    Bay Area, CA
    reason - sounds like you have a good plan of action. i would definitely try changing the tubes first though as thats the easiest/cheapest solution and likely the problem.

    grahams - Well, that's an interesting problem compared to mine, haha. I have mine running a mix of the S.S. and tube sides, so if I were you I would just try tweaking your settings a bit and see if you can't get the distortion louder. If the distortion on the S.S. side sounds good when the gain is set to say... 6, then use that and then adjust the tube side to 8 or something so you get a good output volume overall. Honestly the tube sounds so much warmer to me so I usually have that the dominant sound in the mix. I could never dial in a good distorted sound using just the preamp, so if you manage it you'll be my hero.
     
  7. luknfur

    luknfur

    Jan 14, 2004
    DIXIE
    FWIW:

    I've got one and had another with no problems of any kind. But you need to decide whether it's going back or you're going to have it fixed.

    If you paid through a credit card, it's your decision cause you have the leverage. If you didn't, it's up to the seller.

    I also wouldn't assume just cause the box was not damaged that the unit may not have been damaged during shipping. Imagine dropping the box from the waiste flat onto concrete. The box would look fine.
     
  8. I want to have fixed, but i want to contact the seller and let them know what happened. If it's bad tubes they should at least have told me about it. Maybe I might be able to get some money back. If not, then lesson learned I guess.

    Oh what kind of tubes have you used on yours? My favorite ones are JJ's but maybe you know of some others that are good too.
     
  9. Mark Gollihur

    Mark Gollihur Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jul 19, 2000
    Gloucester County, NJ
    Owner/President, Gollihur Music LLC
    I have two MB1's, one is my main live rig, and the other I use in the home studio. The one in the studio was acting up recently; the tube side wasn't working at ALL. I swapped out for a nice set of Svetlanas and the problem is gone.

    It's possible that the MB1 you have has the original tubes in it, which could make them very old! Definitely pick up a couple of 12ax7's and swap them out; even a couple of russian cheapies would be enough to determine whether that's your problem - you can worry about boutique sound later.

    As far as the delay warming them up, if there is some sort of voltage sensor that's not getting enough signal to indicate that the tubes are ready, I guess it makes sense.

    I guess what I'm saying is, get a couple tubes and try that before you panic. ;)
     
  10. luknfur

    luknfur

    Jan 14, 2004
    DIXIE

    Yep, learned the same lesson myself, luckily, cheaply. Now it's all 100% credit card.

    I've never replaced tubes. The one I sold had just came out of the shop when I bought it and the tubes replaced. It was a back-up that I never used. The other unit someone had some pretty decent user patches and that's why I kept it. I rarely use it cause I run passive most of the time. I originally was interested in them for the midi aspect and creating my own sounds - which I've never actually messed with. If your tech runs into any problems I have the schematics for every MB-1 version made.
     
  11. rpatter

    rpatter Supporting Member

    Sep 18, 2004
    Round Rock, TX
    I played an MB-1 for years. I still haven't found a chorus sound as sweet. The first time I replaced the tubes, I used Groove Tubes. They were OK, but then I tried Sovteks. It was like getting a whole new preamp! I would imagine the Sveltlanas would be good too.
     
  12. mgmadian

    mgmadian

    Feb 4, 2002
    Austin, TX
    Like everyone's said, change the tubes (there are two, if I recall) first. I had an MB-1 a while back and liked it, though could never get it to overdrive/distort much. I just figured it was't designed to do so ... duh.

    I never tried changing the tubes since I opted not to hold on to it, and ended up selling it on to a guy in the Netherlands who experienced the same thing. He swapped out the preamp tubes and it was working perfectly. Now I'm wondering what it would've sounded like if I'd done the same!
     
  13. luknfur

    luknfur

    Jan 14, 2004
    DIXIE
    FWIW:

    it has a pair of tubes. Want to say 12AX-7's. Not a tube guy and it's been a while I since I've ran across it but they're common tubes, not hard to come by, and still used in other rigs today.

    I've wondered what Ada would be putting out today if the plant hadn't burned down. These units are still pretty choice 20 years later.
     
  14. Mark Gollihur

    Mark Gollihur Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jul 19, 2000
    Gloucester County, NJ
    Owner/President, Gollihur Music LLC
    To confirm, since I've had my MB1 open this past week to replace the tubes, there are indeed TWO 12AX7 tubes in there. They're easy to replace, just remove the top panel from the preamp (about 427 screws!) and they're right there. Remember to use a rag or gloves to put the new tubes in; it's wise not to get the oils from your skin on the tubes as it can cause breakage (or something).

    As for distortion sounds, that may have also been a bad tube thing, as I can get KILLER distortion sounds (IMHO). A few excerpted sounds clips from the studio, if you'll indulge me ;) :

     
  15. vbass

    vbass

    May 7, 2004
    Bay Area, CA
    So what kind of tubes did you just put in there 6&8stringer?
     
  16. Nice Clips!!! man I really hope the tube swap works cause, that sounded amazing.

    Im gonna go and get some 12ax7's today. I'll report on it later.

    Thank you everyone that posted. I didn't know that a lot of folks liked this pre a lot. :bassist: :bassist:
     
  17. GrooveSlave

    GrooveSlave

    Mar 20, 2003
    Dallas, TX
    Another vote for changing the tubes. When I got mine, the distortion would not work - no sound. Changed out both tubes and it worked fine. I'm about 90% confident this is your problem.
     
  18. Ok, I found some extra pre amp tubes that I had lying around on one of my dresser drawers. I opened the panel after taking out 427 srews :). And I found a 12AU7 where the overdrive tube is supposed to be. Sheesh, no wonder huh? Well I put a Sovtek tube and lo and behold the overdrive works fine. Later on I'm gonna get some JJ's on it.

    I still get the for ever "tubes not ready" message though. It must be a bad sensor. I still have to flick the on/off switch really fast 3 or 4 times and it goes into the presets. Minor inconvenience for now, but ill put off taking it to my tech untill December, cause were taking that month off from playing shows.

    THANKS EVERYONE!!
     
  19. mgmadian

    mgmadian

    Feb 4, 2002
    Austin, TX
    Just a thought, but the latest OS for the MB-1 was version 2 (maybe 2.05 IIRC). Not sure, but I think you can still obtain this from www.adadepot.com (great resource for ADA gear, btw). A long shot, but possibly an upgraded OS may help the cause. BTW, it's supposed to flash the OS version # on the screen when you turn it on (hopefully before the Tubes Not Ready message appears! ... but this may happen afterwards in the sequence ... )

    Finally, try posting an inquiry on one of adadepot's forums.
     
  20. I have the version 2.05. already. Yeah I'm gonna go there and ask.