MY amps not WORKING (ARRG!)

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by addylewis, Sep 17, 2005.

  1. Anyone know anything 'bout valve amps?

    I was using it at practice today then it stopped - its not in great condition as it is - needs new valves, constantly smells of burning when I use it, etc.

    We were practicing for about 3 hours constantly then it just seemed to stop working (went dead) anyone know the symptoms/what may have happened? - with any luck its overheated, but i'm not sure... :eek:
  2. Amps are not supposed to smell like they're burning. So you've had plenty of advance warning that something was wrong with your amp.

    Now that you've ignored the warning signs, you *may* have damaged your amp quite seriously. It didn't just decide "oh, I'm a tad warm, I'll shut down and cool off"...

    Take it in to an experienced amp repair tech; they will be able to sort it out, though it may be costly. Over the Internet, without even knowing what brand it is, I can't diagnose and repair it for you...

    Hopefully you did not damage either of your power or output transformers. They are quite expensive. Most everything else in a tube (valve) amp is relatively inexpensive, the main cost will be the labor cost.
  3. I don't know what could have happened(its an old vox bass125 head - bought for £250 electrically tested pre-sale) I never use it - It needs new valves so I was gonna wait till I'd got it sorted, but my main amp is locked up at the minute - just wondering why it gave up the ghost and if its worth getting it fixed - I mean, £250 was more money 5 years ago when I bought the thing.

    Another thing - I've got a cat and dog, so I'm wondering if the burning COULD be old dog hair on the valves in the amp? (I keep it on the landing under piles of stuff...) :confused:
  4. Plain Old Me

    Plain Old Me

    Dec 14, 2004
    Are you sure its burning that you smelled? With my 400+ you can kinda smell the warm tubes if you get close enough to them, it resembles the smell of burning but is a tad different... When you smelled the burning, were you close to the amp? What kind of tubes does it have in it? Could be that the tubes just burned out... Take it to a tech.
  5. I notice that too with my SVT

    But, as said, go get it checked out, i take it just went dead? no fun light shows or anything ?
  6. The 0x

    The 0x

    Aug 24, 2003
    Timonium, MD
    Is it a vintage Vox? Old Vox amps (especially the ones over 50 watts) were notorious for overheating & burning up.
  7. I can only smell the burning when I'm over the vents really, well - I'd call it a vintage (a circa 71/72 125 watt head).

    Its got 6 - 7025, 1- ECC81, 2 - EL84, 1 - EL34 Quartet valves(according to the website - its the bass version of this amp)

    It just seemed to die - no smoke or sparks or anything. I know when I bought it that (according to the guy) one tube was dead and one was "on the way out" (dunno if this explains the burning smell?) Also I noticed when we unplugged it today that the knob thing (control panel or whatever you'd call it) seemed to be pretty hot (not burn your fingers off hot, but it'd been sitting in the sun for a few hours)

    Also (ever since I got it) its been buzzing quite a lot (guess its because of the knackered valves) - you can still hear the bass fine (or should I say you COULD hear the bass fine) but at the minute you can only hear the buzzing (its no louder than it was...)

    I'll post more info after I've tried it out again tomorrow
  8. BurningSkies

    BurningSkies CRAZY BALDHEAD

    Feb 20, 2005
    Seweracuse, NY
    Ok, I need to state the obvious here.

    If the amp had a DEAD tube and you knew it, why keep playing it?

    Better yet, if you went to a tech to have it checked out when you bought it, and that tech noted a dead tube, why wasn't it replaced then?!?

    It's really bad for the amp, you may have just blown a fuse, or it's possible you did some real damage, which is my guess from the 'burning smell'.

    From having played various tube and solid state amps for the past 20+ years, I can say there's a different smell that goes with 'I'm trashing my amp' and 'my tubes are warm and happy'

    A buzzing sound can be caused by your amp being out of proper bias, and it can be from bad can also be from a bunch of other things...but most likely the buzzing is the least of your concern right now...It won't buzz if it doesn't work at all.
  9. Plain Old Me

    Plain Old Me

    Dec 14, 2004
    Yah but its kinda hard to tell if you havn't used tube amps for 20 years... Besides, there are exceptions with gear that you aren't used to. An example would be a Peavey tube combo that my guitarist uses for practice. There is some wooden bracing on the back that actually starts to somewhat blacken over time due to its placement near the tubes. Now, first time we used it at practice I asked what the burning smell was and it was the bracing being burned, nothing to do with the tubes.
  10. ...BUT he KNOWS that the amp is not working right, has bad parts (tubes) and yet he continues to use it. Amps don't heal, and a problem will not fix itself. The amp NEEDS service NOW and any more 'trying it out' is only going to do further damage.

    Get the amp serviced by a competent professsional before you do even MORE serious harm to it or possibly yourself.
  11. Plain Old Me

    Plain Old Me

    Dec 14, 2004
    Do not even so much as plug your amp in until its checked out.
  12. Right - thanks for the advice.

    I've never used it until the other night when I used it at a gig (my main amp was locked up and I needed to use it so I could hear myself) otherwise I wouldn't have.

    I think I will get it checked out before I try it out again - never really felt too safe about using it so I'll use a DI box in future till I've got it sorted I think... :meh: