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How to combine a tube head w a ss combo amp??? Is this even possible??? TIA

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by JacoBongTone, Dec 29, 2016.


  1. JacoBongTone

    JacoBongTone

    Dec 29, 2016
    I have a fender rumble 350. I'm happy w this amp it's all i need for now. But I can't help but think about tubes. Is it possible to make a tube head work on my amp?? TIA
     
  2. Sid Fang

    Sid Fang Reformed Fusion Player Supporting Member

    Jun 12, 2008
    You *can* learn to stop thinking about tubes. Trust me. Be patient.

    Other than that, your question is really unclear as stated, but I think the answer is "no".
     
  3. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Retired Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    Why? Do you mean use a tube amp with the speaker in your combo? If you can disconnect the combo's speaker from the head it probably is possible, but why? It's really not an optimal setup even if it worked.
     
  4. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Retired Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    If you want a tube sound, why not get a tube preamp and run it into the effects return of your amp? Much simpler.
     
  5. JacoBongTone

    JacoBongTone

    Dec 29, 2016
    I posted this before actually looking into it as much as I should have. I think I'm probably just gonna wait and wear the hell out of what I have right now. New user, first post lol
     
  6. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    Because that's not a tube sound :D
     
    Munjibunga and tfer like this.
  7. NoiseNinja

    NoiseNinja Experimental-psychedelic-ambient-noise-drone Banned

    Feb 23, 2011
    Denmark
    I had an Ampeg B-15S 60W 15" (tube amp), and I loved the sound (I regret selling it by the way)

    Now I got a Trace Elliot GP75SM 130W 15" (solid state), and I love the sound.

    I obviously wont ever get the Trace Elliot to sound like the B-15S, or any other tube amp for that matter, but I still love the sound I get out of it, even if it's definitely a whole other creature than the Ampeg.

    My point is that if you are happy with your sound there is no need to get another amp, unless you want the possibility of a different sound, either by combining the 2 running 2 amps at the same time or be able to switch between the two.

    There's no point in getting a tube amp just for the sake of having a tube amp if you don't need your amp to sound like a tube amp.

    It's not like tube amps are better than solid states in general (though they certainly generally are more expensive), they just have another sound, and some other possibilities, like the option of driving them to the point of overdrive, where most solid state amps would sound horrible.

    It's all a matter of what sound you are going after, your preferences and the context of which other gear you are using and what kind of music you make.

    Like I would have preferred my Ampeg B-15S tube amp if I still owned a Jerry Jones Longhorn bass (another thing I regret selling) since I was able to get a really nice sound out of combining the two (a sort of mellow warm hollow body vintage sound, but still with a lot of character and definition), but on the other hand I actually think I would prefer my current solid state Trace Elliot for the bass I own now, an Ibanez Mikro (soon to be upgraded with EMG Geezer Butler pickups), and the sound I am going after which is a slightly aggressive punchy clear sound.

    There's really no right or wrong, good or bad, it's all in the context and in your personal preferences.

    If you do in fact just want tubes for the sake of tubes buy a couple of tubes and stick them in piece of clay on top of your amp, won't make any difference on your sound, but at least no one can claim that your amp doesn't have tubes :D
     
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2016
    JacoBongTone likes this.
  8. BusyFingers

    BusyFingers

    Nov 26, 2016
    I just did this about a month ago. Here's how it's done:

    First, you will need to modify your combo with a speaker input jack. A mono 1/4 inch jack will work, though you will want to use some nylon washers to insulate it from the chassis.

    Then you will need a DPDT switch.

    Mount both of these to the the chassis (the back seemed good to me). Then, take a look at the speaker out from the amp to the stock combo speaker. Undo those wires from the speaker.

    At this point, you need to look at the DPDT switch. The underside of the switch will look like this (let's pretend each 8 is a set of two poles):

    wires from amp---> 8 8 8 <---- wires from 1/4 inch jack



    As you can see it will have three sets of 2 poles. The two to the left, will feed from the amp. When the toggle is toward those you're able to use your combo amp. From the other position it will feed from the jack input from your tube the center pair of poles.

    The center set of poles should be wired directly to the combo's speaker.

    Now, be careful and make sure it's all wired up properly before running your amps into it because amps need to have an impedance load otherwise they can burn out a transformer and cause problems. SS is usually more forgiving than tube when it comes to this, but even a tube amp will survive a moment without a load, it's just not something you want to leave for any length of time.
     
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2016
    JacoBongTone likes this.
  9. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Retired Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    But simpler.
     
  10. BusyFingers

    BusyFingers

    Nov 26, 2016
    [​IMG]
     
    JacoBongTone likes this.

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