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Just played an SVT VR head.....

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by JGR, Dec 8, 2006.


  1. JGR

    JGR The "G" is for Gustav Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jun 29, 2006
    Maryland
    President, CEO, CFO, CIO, Chief Engineer, Technician, Janitor - Reiner Amplification
    ...and WOW, I am pretty impressed, so much so that I just put it on layaway!! :eek: Before we go any further, this one was made in the USA which was a plus, not to say the overseas units won't be up to par, but time will tell...

    Let me also say that I owned the reissue preamp for a short time and sent it back as it didn't mesh as well as I had hoped with my DB728's - nice sounding and I can see why people dig it, but it was just too clean for me, and I didn't like the way the eq presets worked.

    Anyway, I think some of the reviews around here have been a bit mixed/lukewarm, so I haven't really put any effort into trying one out (not to mention I need amother amp like a hole in the head), but there it was today in my local store, on top of the matching 8x10, so I HAD to give her a whirl.

    I tried the head out with two Fender USA jazz's, one active, and one passive, as well as a USA Fender P-deluxe I think? - (the one with the humbucking J pickup and active EQ). Played the head through the matching 8x10, as well as a NOS Berg HT322 for something different.

    I have to say, it killed with all the basses, and through both cabs. I turned the tweeter off on the Berg, and the head sounded great with the added clarity- really brought out the grind. Suprising how nice it sounded given these cabs are ported and generally billed as more modern. I ran the head with the master at about half way, and with both the bass's and amp EQ set flat, everything sounded wonderful. The amp had more grind than I expected given my previous experience with the preamp. And unlike the preamp, I really liked the EQ switches and what they did for the overall tone. All very useable. Just huge, round tone for days. Compared to the SVT CL's that I used to own (and like very much), the tone just seemed bigger and clearer with none of the murkyness. It took me a minute to figure out which input to plug into :rolleyes: - played mostly through the first channel that has the midrange control - the other input for this channel was a lot lower in volume - still fuzzy on the layout of all the inputs, but once I found the right one, it was tonal bliss! It's so wonderful to just be able to plug into an amp set flat, turn up, and have perfect tone! No fiddling necessary, though I dig the ultra low and high switches as they were both very musical sounding.

    I don't have any basis for comparison to an original that has been maintained and functioning properly, so I can't comment on how close it is - all I know is that it sounded damn good. Stock power tubes were Sovtek, and I would imagine the amp will sound even better with some Svet's and NOS preamp tubes...

    So looks like it will be an expensive new year paying this thing off... and the pair of new NV610's it is just begging to be paired with... :eek:

    So in summary, I think it's definitely worth plugging into one if you happen to be strolling by. It may just be your cup o'tea, albeit an expensive one. :)

    Cheers!

    JR
     
  2. Sounds awesome :D

    I think the P bass thing is a big bloc? or something similar to that in name.

    I like the sound of it, it sounds similar to the comparisons i made between my SVT-II and the current SVTs (well, CL and 2 Pro at the time)

    I think the best friend to the SVT is the variable mid range, gotta love pumping those lower mids :D

    Also, on another note, arent all SVT's being made in the US still? I was under the impression it was only the "B" series that was being made in vietnam?

    Really wouldnt mind trying out an SVT with a Berg, it sounds like a match made in heaven!
     
  3. JGR

    JGR The "G" is for Gustav Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jun 29, 2006
    Maryland
    President, CEO, CFO, CIO, Chief Engineer, Technician, Janitor - Reiner Amplification
    I just looked on the Fender site, it was an American Deluxe P

    http://fender.com/products/search.php?partno=0194060764

    The three position midrange selector on the VR sounded much sweeter than the 5 position on the CL. The highest position really added some grit to the sound. I wish Ampeg would put a manual for the VR online.

    Now that you mention it, I do remember talk of only the B series moving; maybe Mr. Tiers can confirm?

    Cheers,

    JR
     
  4. Aye, i wouldnt mind a scout at the manual too! However surely all the controls etc should be the same as the SVP CL?

    My bad on the bass, the way i read the description i automatically thought of this :

    http://fender.com/products/search.php?partno=0138100306

    But on further inspection it doesnt have an active eq, my bad!
     
  5. JGR

    JGR The "G" is for Gustav Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jun 29, 2006
    Maryland
    President, CEO, CFO, CIO, Chief Engineer, Technician, Janitor - Reiner Amplification
    no worries, it was a good guess!

    i would imagine the boost/cut frequencies are the same as the preamp version, just with rocker rather than rotary switches. i guess i just want to double check because they sounded so good with this amp and i really didn't like them with the preamp - i found the preamp to get a bit woofy in the low end if i wasn't careful. there is no denying the beauty of an all tube power section, especially when designed in conjunction with the preamp as a whole.

    JR
     
  6. jpark

    jpark

    Feb 2, 2006
    WV
    I'm anxious to try one and compare it to my svt classic. I'm going to my local place tomorrow, hopefully they will have one.
     
  7. brothernewt

    brothernewt Some people call me the stormtrooper of love...

    Apr 13, 2004
    Happyrock, OR
    You won't be dissapointed... and I'd hardly think you need a pair NV610's, just one kills marshalls dead. :smug:
     
  8. galore

    galore

    May 10, 2006
    EU
    Email ampeg and ask them for the manuals, they will send you i'm sure - i got them this way.
     
  9. I think the difference may have been in power amps really, ive heard the SVT-IIP into a SS power amp, and i have to say, i could hear the similarities, but it was just not the same as when it has an all tube power section :hyper:

    Or PM Jerrold Tiers? He was ace and sent me a copy of the old non-pro manual, damned nice bloke!
     
  10. JGR

    JGR The "G" is for Gustav Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jun 29, 2006
    Maryland
    President, CEO, CFO, CIO, Chief Engineer, Technician, Janitor - Reiner Amplification
     
  11. The 0x

    The 0x

    Aug 24, 2003
    Timonium, MD
    I though the SVT-VR doesn't have a master volume?
     
  12. Master volume but no pre gain i believe
     
  13. bdeaux

    bdeaux Bass, the final frontier! Supporting Member

    Jun 13, 2002
    Salt Lake City based
    Branden Campbell
    So does the VR come with a back brace??? :crying: I have a 71 SVT and it's a beast. But once I'm on stage w/ the 810, it's all owrth it. :hyper:
     
  14. Too true
     
  15. ihixulu

    ihixulu Supporting Member

    Mar 31, 2000
    South Shore MA
    I recall reading in some SVT thread a while back that the original SVT had a volume only, and it controlled the gain for the preamp. PBG, IIRC, ran some tests on his vintage rig and noted that much of the vintage SVT growl came from the pre rather than power section. PBG, if you read this, please confirm.

    Which sort of explains why older SVT's start distorting when the volume knob gets to 11, even though there is plenty more loudness to be had.
     
  16. bdeaux

    bdeaux Bass, the final frontier! Supporting Member

    Jun 13, 2002
    Salt Lake City based
    Branden Campbell
    You mean Spinal Tap 11 or clockwise 11? I'm gigging my SVT and 810 tonight, so I'm looking forward to the growl.
     
  17. The 0x

    The 0x

    Aug 24, 2003
    Timonium, MD

    That can't be true. If that were the case, you'd be slamming the preamp the whole time. Not exactly good sounding at low volumes.
     
  18. ihixulu

    ihixulu Supporting Member

    Mar 31, 2000
    South Shore MA

    Whoops, I meant 11 o'clock.
     
  19. I would love to have one of these with a matching anniversary series 810....

    One day...
     
  20. tombowlus

    tombowlus If it sounds good, it is good Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 3, 2003
    North central Ohio
    Editor-in-Chief, Bass Gear Magazine
    I still gotta check one of these out. I wonder if anyone in Columbus carries one (going to be there this week)?
     

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