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Anyone know anything about a BK butler Tube Works 300w?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Poor Tom, Apr 26, 2009.


  1. So I currently don't have an amp. at all. I put my squier up for sale on craigslist and someone wants to trade me a BK butler Tubeworks 300w with a SWR triad 3 way speaker cab for it. I don't know anything at all about this amp head or the swr.

    Anyone have any thoughts?
     
  2. bongomania

    bongomania Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Oct 17, 2005
    PDX, OR
    owner, OVNIFX and OVNILabs
    That sounds like a crazy good deal. The Triad goes for about $300-$350 used by itself, and the BK Butler amps are a bit rare and very cool. How much it's worth depends on the condition, but if I had a Squier to give up, I would.
     
  3. Jim C

    Jim C Is that what you meant to play or is this jazz? Supporting Member

    Nov 29, 2008
    Bethesda, MD
    +1
    What kind of condition of the trade items?
     
  4. smogg

    smogg

    Mar 27, 2007
    NPR, Florida
    I'm not crazy, I'm just a little unwell
    If all the features on that amp work and no speakers are blown in the SWR, JUMP ON IT. That bass head is bad @$$, but no parts support from Genz Benz any more. I know I have a fried one that took beating after beating for years.
     
  5. MIJ-VI

    MIJ-VI Banned Supporting Member

    Jan 12, 2009
    Hi PT.

    The downloadable manual for your prospective amp.
     
  6. agedhorse

    agedhorse Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 12, 2006
    Davis, CA (USA)
    Development Engineer-Mesa, Product Support-Genz Benz
    The problem is that many of the parts have been discontinued by the parts manufacturers for quite some time, in fact before we bought Tubeworks over 10 years ago. These were (most likely) products that were made before we owned the company and were discontinued at least 12 years ago.
     
  7. MIJ-VI

    MIJ-VI Banned Supporting Member

    Jan 12, 2009
    :eek: *clutches his B.K. Butler REAL TUBE OVERDRIVE protectively*
     
  8. Rick Auricchio

    Rick Auricchio Registered Bass Offender

    Definitely. I had a Blue Tube II preamp and MosValve power amp in 1991. So that's 18 years ago.

    I still have a few MosValve power amps. Two of the MV962 160w 2-space models, and a MV982 single-space one. They sound great for small PA use.
     
  9. JimmyM

    JimmyM

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    I own a Tubeworks 410T that used to belong to Dave LaRue. I'm off of 410's these days, but it's still the best 410 I've ever used. Giant sound. Tubeworks was a pretty killer company. I'd totally hop on that head & cab.
     
  10. idoru

    idoru

    Dec 18, 2005
    Brisbane, Australia
    I just sold a Tubeworks RT-902 that I'd been using as a gain channel for my bass rig. Never quite did it for me, so I flipped it on eBay. Made the mistake of plugging one of my guitars into it to test it before shipping ;)

    c-
     
  11. quickervicar

    quickervicar Supporting Member

    Jul 21, 2006
    Lancaster, PA

    *clutches his broken B.K. Butler BLUE TUBE OVERDRIVE protectively* :bawl:
     
  12. SGD Lutherie

    SGD Lutherie Banned Commercial User

    Aug 21, 2008
    Bloomfield, NJ
    Owner, SGD Music Products
    I've got a mint condition Blue Tube! I replaced the 12AX7 with a 12AU7 for less fuzz and more grunt. Sounds great, but the output impedance is too high. I plan on adding an output buffer to it at some point.
     
  13. The Wrench

    The Wrench

    Feb 13, 2009
    Raleigh, NC
    I played a Triad for years and years. I think it's a great cab.
     
  14. smogg

    smogg

    Mar 27, 2007
    NPR, Florida
    I'm not crazy, I'm just a little unwell

    No insult intended to Genz Benz,
    just thought the OP should understand that repair parts are not available for that head. I guess I should have stated "due to it's age" in my first response. Great sounding and versatile head none the less. The BK Butler RT-3300 is what lead me to the GB camp in the first place. Maybe 10 or 15 years from now we could be having the same conversation about the GBE-600 for example.
    Either way it is all good as long as people understand that at some point down the road parts can dry up for an amp that is out of production.
    The new Max line definitely has me rethinking traditional lead sleds. Rock on GB.
     
  15. agedhorse

    agedhorse Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 12, 2006
    Davis, CA (USA)
    Development Engineer-Mesa, Product Support-Genz Benz
    Yes, depending on the position of the output level control it can be somewhat high. It's lowest with the output turned all the way up.
     
  16. agedhorse

    agedhorse Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 12, 2006
    Davis, CA (USA)
    Development Engineer-Mesa, Product Support-Genz Benz
    None taken. It's not because we don't want to fix them but because in many cases we didn't even manufacture them and have very limited information and parts availability specifically for the TO-3 MOS FETS, pots and mechanicals. All Tubeworks product out there is at least 7 years old.
     
  17. SGD Lutherie

    SGD Lutherie Banned Commercial User

    Aug 21, 2008
    Bloomfield, NJ
    Owner, SGD Music Products
    My problem has always been two things with this pedal, and they are probably interrelated. The first is that when plugged into some loads, I get almost no level. So I would have to put an effects pedal (without true bypass) to buffer the output. Then I got the full output level.

    The other problem, and the reason I changed the tube to a 12AU7, is that even with the output level all the way up, by the time I got to unity gain (compared to the bypass position), I had too much distortion. I would really have to crank the drive knob too far. I tried a few other brands of 12AX7, just to be sure, and the same thing. The 12AU7 allows me to get the gain knob higher without too much fuzz. Now I can go from a clean tube sound, to fairly gritty overdrive.

    So one of my plans had always been to add a buffer (with a little gain) at the output.

    It's a nice sounding pedal though. I bought it new back in the day.
     
  18. quickervicar

    quickervicar Supporting Member

    Jul 21, 2006
    Lancaster, PA
    I was going to do the same tube swap to mine. Pulled it out of the box, plugged it in.....nothing. I think I'll take a look at the circuit board soldering to see if it is a simple fix. It got me a great sound on a gig one time---the perfect threshold of clean into crunch based entirely on attack. It felt so much like a real SVT (even though the head at the time was an SVT-3PRO).

    Back on-topic: Butler seemed to know what he was doing. I've heard good things about those heads. And the Triad is a studio standard. Power-hungry though.
     
  19. agedhorse

    agedhorse Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 12, 2006
    Davis, CA (USA)
    Development Engineer-Mesa, Product Support-Genz Benz
    The reason why the relatively high output impedance wasn't an issue is that it was originally intended to drive the input of an instrument amp... ~500k-1M.

    The 12AU7 is a lower gain alternative. There is a modification or two I developed that will reduce the gain and increase the output level a little bit and lower the output impedance a little, but I don't recall the details and may not be able to find the paperwork.
     
  20. MIJ-VI

    MIJ-VI Banned Supporting Member

    Jan 12, 2009
    Hi quickervicar.

    You may be able to get your BT repaired. Check out this thread.
     

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