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VBA400 with gold text

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by SwamiRob, Dec 31, 2011.


  1. After a bit of rooting around in the forums I've seen a couple of people mention that the first VBA400s were a little different, and had some sort of integrated compression in the circuitry. My (gold text one if you didn't gather already :p) VBA seems to be a little less open when cranked then it really seems it should be compared to others I've played through, and I've played a white text one through my NV215 and it seemed noticeably more open. The things still loud as anything, but it turns into a bit of a wall of what seems like power amp distortion to me a bit to easily. I've not had a great deal of experience with valve amps, not bass ones especially, so couldn't say if it's poweramp distortion or just knackered tubes or the plethora of other things that go wrong with valve amps.

    Obviously the thing could maybe just do with a decent service, however I'm just a bit curious now I've seen it been mentioned. Gonna make a note of the serial number on it next time I use it though cos I'm pretty interested as in the other thread apparently there's only about 100 of them or something.
     
  2. Clammy

    Clammy

    Nov 3, 2008
    Ottawa, Canada
    Endorsing Artist: Neal Moser Guitars, DR Strings
    Hmmm... I've never heard of that. Do you know what years are affected? Mine is a 1999 model. Got me curious now. What text are you talking about with regards to "gold" and "white"?

    Cheers!
    :bassist::bassist::bassist:
     
  3. Just the text on the front panel is all gold pretty simply, also where the ones with white text have VBA 400 valve bass amplifier witha white circle around, mine just has VBA400 in gold. I really don't have any idea which is why I'm pretty interested, unfortunately more cos I want my VBA to sound like the one I thought I was getting and not the filth it seems to be, which would be awesome in the right setting but for what I use it for I want it to be loud without too much grind.
     
  4. Clammy

    Clammy

    Nov 3, 2008
    Ottawa, Canada
    Endorsing Artist: Neal Moser Guitars, DR Strings
    Ah, ok. I just looked at a picture of mine. It has the white writing and "VBA 400 Valve Bass Amplifier" with a white encirclement around it. Guess I have one of the later ones. I'm wondering if the gold text was a first year only thing. If I'm not mistaken, the VBA 400 was introduced in 1997, and mine is a 1999 model.

    Cheers!
    :bassist::bassist::bassist:
     
  5. Aussie Player

    Aussie Player

    Apr 20, 2011
    The original 400W valve Marshall was introduced about 1981. I ordered the first one in Australia and then AC/DC picked one up. Played mine through a SUNN 4x15 cab using an Alembic Spoiler which was also brand new back then.

    The compression unit was defective in them and Jim Marshall, who was in Sydney at that time, offered me a full refund to get the head out of the market. He discontinued them until the VBA model came out.

    PM response sent to SWAMIROB.
     
  6. Cheers aussie, turns out I'm an idiot and mis-interpreted "goldface", which I assume means the traditional brass front of a marshall amp, not just the text on the front of it. Think it just needs giving to my tech for a bit of care.
     

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