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Relative merits of Ampeg vt-22 head for Bass?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Rat Blitz, Oct 30, 2010.


  1. Rat Blitz

    Rat Blitz

    Jan 6, 2009
    I've got the opportunity to trade some drum gear for a Ampeg vt-22 head. The original speakers have been removed and it's been cut down to head size. Of course it's 4 hours away so I don't want to waste my time checking it out without knowing some more info about it.
    Any opinions (I know there will be) about it's relative merits or worth (would it be worth less because it has been bastardized from it's original form)?
    It's supposed to be 100 watts. Would that be louder perhaps that Bassman 100 head? I love the tone of the Bassman but would like a bit more power.
    I've heard any necessary repairs could be expensive.


    ampegv22.

    ampeg2-1.
     
  2. One hundred watts is one hundred watts whether derived from Fender or Ampeg.
     
  3. johnk_10

    johnk_10 vintage bass nut Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 16, 2008
    Thousand Oaks, CA
    John K Custom Basses
    a VT22 is the same amp as a V4 (only they are the 'combo version), and IME, they sound fuller and louder than a bassman 100 (which is really only 85 watts compared to a V4's actual 108+ watts).
     
  4. garmenteros

    garmenteros Bass Enthusiast Supporting Member

    Aug 24, 2008
    Dominican Republic
    All tube vintage ampeg? I'd get it unless I'd really need the drum gear...
     
  5. oggdawg

    oggdawg

    Oct 25, 2009
    I've had a V4B from the same era, and volume should not be a problem. Great tube tone.
     
  6. Kindness

    Kindness

    Oct 1, 2003
    Chicago
    +1

    There is both a power difference and a voicing difference. In practice I find the Fender to be just slightly less than I need and the Ampeg to be just slightly more.
     
  7. "One hundred watts is one hundred watts whether derived from Fender or Ampeg."

    Doesn't it also depend on how much voltage is running around those circuits and the size (output) of the transformers?

    Gale
     
  8. johnk_10

    johnk_10 vintage bass nut Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 16, 2008
    Thousand Oaks, CA
    John K Custom Basses
    it also depends on at what percentage of distortion you're rating it at. and i guarantee that the ampeg sounds and feels ALOT more stout.
     
  9. Rat Blitz

    Rat Blitz

    Jan 6, 2009
    Ok we're progressing on the trade and hopefully can finalize something.
    Now I know that this is basically the same a V4 head.
    Which still leaves me with 2 questions.
    1) How is the V4 different than the V4B? Just guitar version with reverb ???
    2) Relative worth. Since it's been cut down and made into head only what is the relative price range of this baby? Will it be hard to sell if I ever need/want to?
    Cheers
     
  10. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    1. the eq centers on the knobs are slightly more optimized for bass on the v4b. isn't really very noticeable, though. same otherwise, except of course for the reverb.

    2. it won't ever be hard to sell, but being cut out of a combo might affect its worth. the v4/v4b usually goes for around $500-600 in vg-ex shape. a vt 22 cut out of a combo...i don't know, i'd expect it to be worth a good hundy less at least, maybe even more if the box wasn't done so nicely.
     
  11. johnk_10

    johnk_10 vintage bass nut Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 16, 2008
    Thousand Oaks, CA
    John K Custom Basses
    worst case, you could always buy a new head cabinet for it from fliptops and then it's a basically a bonafide V4, since V4's and VT22's share the exact same chassis and even have "V4/VT22" silksceened on their back panel. then it would not only look great, but it would be easy to sell if you ever wanted to.

    the only difference between a V4B and a V4 is the that the V4's have verb (as well as few more tubes in the circuit for it) and the V4B has a deep switch (i never use it), whereas the V4 has input sensitivity switches. the later ones (like the one you've shown) also has a master volume. AFAIK, the midrange eq switches on both amps are at the same frequencies.
     
  12. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    wow, i did not know that. so i guess that would pretty much legitimize it to get a fliptops box. i must admit i'm not crazy about the box it's in. functional, but not pretty like the original boxes. maybe if it had chrome corners.
     
  13. johnk_10

    johnk_10 vintage bass nut Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 16, 2008
    Thousand Oaks, CA
    John K Custom Basses
    yep. if you look above 'the ampeg company' silkscreen on the back of my VT22, you also see that it says V4 right next to it.

    11-VT-22.
     
  14. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    neat! man, i miss my v4b. i loved that amp. stupid damn bar fire...turned it and a flatback 810 into a twisted pile of metal and ashes. i wouldn't have gotten my 69 svt if it hadn't happened, but that was my only gigging amp for over 10 years. good times...

    :bawl:
     
  15. coreyfyfe

    coreyfyfe Supporting Member

    Nov 19, 2007
    boston, ma
    I had always heard that the V4B eq points were the same as the SVT while the V4 wsa 300/1000/3000 but according to this pic (not my amp, I had a V4) they were the same.

    [​IMG]

    Either way, this guy recommends changing the values of a few caps in the pre-amp to allow more bass through if you plan on using a V4/VT22 for bass:

    http://stonemarmot.com/rants/?p=38
     
  16. Rat Blitz

    Rat Blitz

    Jan 6, 2009
    Just picked up my VT-22. The custom case is solid as a rock and better equipped than the standard Ampeg B4 design (I love the side handles). It was just re-cased 2 years ago apparently at a cost of about $200.

    Johnk's photo of the back says VT22 and B4. The back of my says VT-22, B4 and V-4B which is kind of interesting.

    And it has plenty more balls than the 100 Watt Fender Bassman.

    Apparently the reverb has been disabled. Does anyone if this is possibly an easy fix if I ever want to get it working again? Is there some switch or screw adjustment to lock it out?

    It's also got master volume so would anyone know approximate age? (late 70's I assume)

    What the heck does the hum balance adjustment on the back do?

    IMG_2000.

    IMG_2002.

    IMG_2001.
     
  17. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    don't know about the verb, but it was made between 74-79, and the hum balance is for adjusting so it runs at its most quiet.
     
  18. coreyfyfe

    coreyfyfe Supporting Member

    Nov 19, 2007
    boston, ma
    The side handles are a perfect addition for this amp. I hated the top handle crap on my V4 and the roadcase I used (which had side handles) added a bunch of weight so it was a crap shoot.

    As far as the reverb, there should be a lock switch just above the right cable holder (looking at the back of the amp) which is apparently missing on this amp. It may have been removed or broken off when separating the head from the VT-22 combo box. That could be your issue, or the circuit may have been modified to eliminate it, at which point you'll have to get a schematic and check it out.
     
  19. jackcheez

    jackcheez

    Sep 13, 2010
    Long Beach, CA
    If it sounds anything like a V4-B... :cool::):cool::):cool:
     
  20. Nice score. I'll take a V4/V4B/VT22 over a bassman any day.
     

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