Vintage Ampeg Mod?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by dirk, Sep 18, 2003.

  1. dirk


    Apr 6, 2000
    Memphis, TN
    Would it be possible to get an Ampeg V4-B 100 watt bass head, and replace the tubes to make it a 300 watt like the SVT Classic? It seems the V4-Bs are more common and cheaper. If this is possible how much would this mod cost?

  2. No
  3. monkfill


    Jan 1, 2003
    Kansas City
    That would be a pretty serious modification. . . I can't imagine being able to salvage more than the box. I would just look for a used SVT-CL if you're looking to save money over a new one.

    Conveniently, I'll be selling mine as soon as it gets back from being serviced.
  4. BruceWane


    Oct 31, 2002
    Houston, TX
    To put it clearly - yes it is technically possible to modify a V4B to put out 300 watts. But it would take far more than just changing tubes. For the cost of this kind of modification, you could definitely buy one, if not two, SVT's.

    It's like spending $20,000 to make a Honda Civic go faster than a Z-28.....when you could just buy a used Z-28 for $10,000.
  5. dirk


    Apr 6, 2000
    Memphis, TN
    thanks for the replies.. you learn something new everyday. basically it boils down to this: I love the ampeg tone, and I have a vintage ampeg cabinet from the 70s that has been beat to hell and it sounds great. I really want a Vintage SVT amp that has been beat to hell to put on top of it, and I would also like that to sound great. Unfortunately I'm working with a budget and don't actually have the money right now.

  6. KingOfAmps

    KingOfAmps Inactive

    Is this the short answer AND the long answer?
  7. Yeah, you couldn't even use the old chassis because the requisite bigger transformers wouldn't fit. 'Bout the only thing you could use would be to cannibalize the tube sockets.
  8. slugworth

    slugworth Inactive

    Jun 12, 2003
    So. Calif.
    You can run the 6550 power tube in a V4B head
    with no problems. After you re-bias, you might
    squeeze another 30 watts or so out of it, but
    you'll never get SVT power out of a V4B, it's
    a completely different amp. If you ever wondered where about those weird 7027 power tubes, don't
    panic, you can use a 6L6 in there just fine, you
    don't even have to re-bias. The 6L6 is the same
    as a 7027 except for pinout and cosmetics.

    Good Luck,
  9. ...unless of course you're talking about the modern SLM V4-BH, in which case it has to be rebiased to handle NORMAL 6L6GC's (it ships with Sovtek 5881's); 6550's are totally out of the question unless you like spending a lot of cash upping a bias supply for a tube that can't produce any more power because the plate supply is too weak.

    Oh and BTW, dirk, there is a WORLD of difference between a REAL SVT and the SVT CL. You have to make distinctions among them. 70's Ampeg stuff runs circles around the modern "reissues."
    Regardless of how Cratepeg advertises the SVT CL, it can't hold a candle to the real thing sonically and they're nowhere near close electronically. They don't even have the same number of channels!
  10. I think my V-4 (Same as V-4B) has better tone than my SVT. It has a thicker tone with more grind. When I team it with my 4-10 and 1-18, the sound is HUGE. The key here is efficient cabs. A 300 watt head is NOT 3 times louder than a 100 watter. You need TEN times the power to double your loudness. Efficient cabs with multi drivers will bring you closer to what you want. Besides you are not going to mod the V-4 anyway.
    Are you looking at a vintage V-4 or a modern one? Mine is a Magnavox 1972.
  11. dirk


    Apr 6, 2000
    Memphis, TN
    I want a vintage one. Not the new one. I'm looking for something to pair with my old as hell ampeg 8-10.. and I just noticed the V4-B is a little cheaper and easier to come by on Ebay than a vintage SVT

  12. Dirk, I never tried it (Would like to), but a V-4 with an 8-10 should rock your stones loose.
  13. Dirk, I never tried it (Would like to), but a V-4 with an 8-10 should rock your stones loose. And be advised, you may need to have a cap job done, as with all older tube amps, the caps go to hell over time.
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