Ampeg SVT-7 Pro - Reliability?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Slowpicker, Jan 9, 2014.

  1. Slowpicker


    Jan 25, 2013
    Can you guys tell me how reliable the Ampeg SVT-7 Pro is these days? Have they fixed the design flaws that came up with earlier revisions?

    I have a 410HLF and am still searching for an adequate head...

  2. Specify on the design flaws you are referencing. I've had mine for about 6 months and I have had no problems.
    MrRubi04 likes this.
  3. I've had mine for a few weeks. Love the sound. I have been practicing on it about an 1-2 hours every day since.

    I have been trying to work it fairly hard to bring out any issues, but it seems very solid to me.

    Just one data point for you...
    MrRubi04 likes this.
  4. olirm


    Jul 15, 2013
    I think he is referring to the cutting out issue that some users were having. There are several threads out there about it. I had the issue a few years ago with the first one I bought and was just outside the GC return period but they replaced it with another anyway. The second one was a rev C00 and was fine for a while but at just under a year had the same issue again with it cutting out. I sent this one back under warranty and they sent me back a new or probably refurbished unit. While it was out on warranty I went in a different direction and when the 7pro came back it was relegated to backup and I've hardly used it since, just could not trust it. Too bad as I really like the sound.

    I would not call it a design flaw per se, but there was something going on, and when I went to reading about it there were many with the same experience I had. Though I am aware of unhappy people are more vocal so who knows how widespread the issue really was. I know two local bands that gig heavily pushing large cabs with these and have had no problems in a couple years, and people on here rave about it. So there are reliable units out there obviously.
  5. There is an "Ampeg SVT pro 7 club" thread in TB. I went through most of that thread before my recent purchase.

    From what I gathered, most of the problems were in the first year or two of production. Most of those bought in the past year or so seemed to be problem free.

    There is a YouTube video: "Ampeg Bass Heads - Understanding Gain Structure produced by Dino Monoxcelos, where he explains how to work with the gain and master controls and EQ for several Ampegs, including the 7Pro. In another vid about the PF series, he talks about how those amps can cut out if you don't set the gain properly. Since both amp series have SS power amps, the gain structures are similar (as you learn the vid above). While the gain structure for the all-tube amps is different.

    Judging from the club thread, where many players peg (or at least 3:00) both the gain and master controls, some cut-outs may be occurring due to this behavior (just a hunch, nothing confirmed). Some players do not seem to consider the difference between the SS and all-tube characters.

    Hope some or all of this helps.
  6. " . . where many players peg (or at least 3:00) both the gain and master controls . . " Wow! I can't fathom pushing my SVT7 (or any amp) to those levels. If I felt I needed to, then I should be playing thru an FOH/PA or I should invest in a bigger amp!
  7. I don't play metal or punk or such, so I don't get the mind-set. But for certain types of music, some players seem to want an over-driven sound. From what Dino M. says, it would seem that an all-tube SVT-CL would be a better choice (than an SS-based power amp model) for over-driving because it's designed to handle that type of load.

    Am I making sense here?
  8. Biggbass


    Dec 14, 2011
    Planet Earth
    no problems with my 7 pro. These amps perform great as long as you don't turn everything up to 11.
  9. I understand that they desire a certain level of overdriving, but it just seems to be the wrong way to go about it. In my band, we do hard rock/modern/alt rock, so I don't really need that - but if I did, pushing my amp to those levels wouldn't be the most cost (or method) effective way that I would go about it. An overdrive pedal or other FX would seem wiser, or - as you have pointed out - invest in an all tubie SVT.
  10. imthewine


    Dec 11, 2009
    Columbia, SC
    I've had my 7-Pro since last March and have had zero problems with it. I love it!
    MrRubi04 likes this.
  11. kennyrodg


    May 5, 2008
    Rev C here in the UK. No problems to report, plenty of gigs on mine now and I've pushed it a time or two to say the least.
    I always take back up but that's the same for any amp I gig.
    Happy Days.
  12. BassBob1


    Dec 21, 2010
    I got mine in 2010 right after they were released and sold it this time last year (that makes is a Rev A I believe). I only sold it because it was a much bigger rig than what I needed and was just taking up too much space. I ran it with a 410HLF. I always loved it and never had any problems with it.
    MrRubi04 likes this.
  13. JimmyM


    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    Bah...overdriving the preamp in a 7 Pro will result in the preamp tube burning out quicker than running it clean but it won't harm the amp.
    lushuk likes this.
  14. I won't claim any expertise. But in at least one of the Ampeg videos, Dino M. had mentioned that overdriving will cause the heat protection circuit to shut the power amp down. Isn't that the symptom that some are experiencing?

    From reading others experience, it seems that there was a serious flaw in earlier amps--Rev. B and earlier. But from the videos, it seems that Ampeg thinks more recent issues could be related to the above.

    I admit that I am just trying to read between the lines...

    From the threads on TB, it would seem that the previous serious flaws were solved in Rev. C.

    Any other thoughts? Is there anything definitive from Ampeg?
  15. JimmyM


    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    First I've heard of that about the 7 Pro. I've run a couple with the gain all the way up before, and they never shut down. He might be talking about overdriving the power amp, which not only sounds really nasty but it's so earsplittingly loud, I don't know why anyone would want to ;)
    fedenybass likes this.
  16. Slowpicker


    Jan 25, 2013
    Quite helpful and interesting replies, thanks so far.

    Is rev. C the latest?
  17. This question is not quite as straightforward as you might think.

    From what I have read, there seems to be both a box revision and a board revision. It's not clear to me how they track with each other (anyone?).

    The box revision is printed on a sticker on the outside of the amp. My very recent box (bought at GC) says "Rev. C00", which is what most of the posters in the TB threads refer to.

    I have seen mention of a different revision label on the board, I think rev. E02 is the highest I have seen.

    I have not opened mine to check this. I will (at least) wait until the 30 day post-purchase period is over...

    Hope this is helping.

    (BTW, I was probably too long-winded (and over-reaching) on the overdriving thing. My main point was that some of the rev. C failures you read about MAY be due to operating the amp counter to the manufacturer's recommendations. And my evidence of such is from the many posts that seem to flaunt said recommendations.)
  18. Jim C

    Jim C Spector#496:More curves than Sophia + better sound

    Nov 29, 2008
    My Rev COO sounds great and has ben trouble free. John K bought one a few weeks before mine and it broke. There are a million good and bad stories.
    I went the used route which means no warranty.
    You cannot get a copy of the schematic and it is not an amp a novice should or could work on (myself included).

    It appears that (for whatever reason) there are replacement boards at the F revision level.
  19. AdamR

    AdamR Supporting Member

    Sep 24, 2007
    Bethel CT
    Endorsing Artist: VF Cables, Dirtbag Clothing
    Ive been wanting to try one for awhile now. Finally scored one (C00) in the classifieds. Should be here Monday. This will be my first Ampeg,. We will see how it stacks up against my Hartke Kilo which I really like.
    99Z3 likes this.
  20. VeganThump


    Jun 29, 2012
    South Jersey

    It's a great amp and you're gonna love it. I have a Rev C00 and I haven't had nary a problem in the year plus I've owned, and I have pushed it HARD. That said, I also realized that I wanted a more overdriven sound so I ended up getting an SVT-CL!