Ampeg portaflex pf500 fried after 1 hour

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Scramblur, Nov 7, 2012.

  1. Scramblur


    Nov 7, 2012
    Just got a new portaflex pf500 and 115 cabinet. Took it out of the box, played for about an hour when I heard clicking sounds. Next thing I knew the head was smoking and I has to yank the plug.

    I really like this setup but I have a bad taste in my mouth after the expierence. New head on its way but wanted to see if anyone had any comments in regards to my expierence. I'm nervous now.
  2. coreyfyfe

    coreyfyfe Supporting Member

    Nov 19, 2007
    boston, ma
    Try the portaflex megathreads. There have been a fair number of people reporting issues with these heads. Ampeg at one point said the failures were only around 3% or something like that which seems low based on reporting, but people tend not to report gear working as it should ;) If it's any consolation, I've been playing mine for a year and a half now with no issues. Hope the replacement gets you sorted.
  3. stiles72


    Mar 20, 2009
    Albany IL
    Call Ampeg and they should cover you under warranty.

    What you describe happened to mine twice. The first unit Ampeg replaced right away, the second one ( a year later) I had to go to an authorized repair center. Both times Ampeg was very good at getting me taken care of from a customer service perspective. According to the tech who fixed mine, it had some output MOSFETS that blew. He said he has seen this type of problem before with other class D amps, and that it was most likely a component failure - as opposed to a faulty amp design.
  4. arai

    arai Banned

    Jul 16, 2007
    It is more like 30%
  5. Scramblur


    Nov 7, 2012
    Since it died out of the box, Guitar Center is replacing with no issue. It was just a discomfort.

    @stiles72, what was the cost of repair second time around?
  6. pfschim

    pfschim Just a Skeleton with a Jazz bass

    Apr 26, 2006
    SF Bay Area
    sounds like you just got a bad unit. It happens. If GC will replace it for no charge, you should be good to go.

    That being said, I do not gig my PF500 without a backup because it has mysteriously flaked out on me in the past.
    I don't have to do that with the other amps I gig with.

    good sounding amp/cab when it works though.

    good luck.
  7. christw

    christw Get low!

    May 11, 2008
    Dayton OH
    I want to be Tesla (tinkerer at Dayton Amp Co)
    and everything on the internet is a fact. ;)
  8. Wow. That sucks, man. Sorry to hear.
  9. arai

    arai Banned

    Jul 16, 2007
    Sure is. I have seen poles
  10. Dave W

    Dave W Supporting Member

    Mar 1, 2007
    White Plains
    Not buying one of these was one of the best decisions I made. There is no way I would feel comfortable gigging one.

    I'm sure plenty of people are loving them and not having issues, but it sure seems like a high rate of reported problems just from TB alone.
  11. El-Bob

    El-Bob Supporting Member

    Oct 22, 2006
    Hamilton, ON
    Telephone, or fishing?
  12. arai

    arai Banned

    Jul 16, 2007
    :oops:. I should start a poll to find out
  13. Remeber, though, 42.1% of all statistics were made up :)
  14. You forgot 99% of the time. :D
  15. 19 times out of 20...
  16. toomanyslurpees


    Jan 21, 2009
    4 out of 5 dentists recommend the pf500.
  17. Scramblur


    Nov 7, 2012
    Before the amp fried itself, I had the volume sitting around 1 oclock, gain at 10. I had the volume on the bass all the way up, mute switch engaged and the rig sitting like that for about 25 minutes.

    I have since learned that my bass volume pots is shot and produces the same clicking sound on my practice amp.

    Is it possible that the bass shorted out the amp?
  18. craig.p


    Sep 28, 2008
    New Hampshire
    Highly unlikely. The instrument can't "short out" anything. It's a voltage source, nothing else. If the instrument shorts, then the amp sees an input voltage of zero, and you can't ask for less of an amp than that. ;)

    It's possible, though extremely remote, that whatever's wrong inside the instrument's control cavity is causing the instrument to behave like an antenna, causing RF to be injected into the input, and causing the amp to go into oscillation. Like I said, though, extremely remote. Still, I'd dig into that control cavity and fix whatever's wrong, just out of concern for Best Practices.
  19. You have proof of this? Show us.
  20. arai

    arai Banned

    Jul 16, 2007
    No one knows the exact number but judging from this thread it is pretty safe to assume it is a lot higher then the 3% failure rate like the postI was replying to claimed.