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Bling vs cost vs tone

Discussion in 'Shock Brother's DIY Amps' started by gearjunkie, Feb 28, 2012.

  1. gearjunkie

    gearjunkie Tele-Meister

    424
    Jul 29, 2011
    SW Ontario
    Ready to order my 3rd Trinity 5E3 Tweed Deluxe kit from Stephen, I'm contemplating going with say a blue turret board, blue Sprague Atom filter caps, blue coupling caps, but after pricing them at triple or quadroople the cost of say MIEC and orange drops, it makes me reconsider if that bling is worth the extra expense?? After replacing the bigger orange dipps with the little dinky mallorys and hearing how sweet the tone is, makes me start to wonder if a coupling cap isn't a coupling cap no matter the size or cost or material..
     
  2. telex76

    telex76 Doctor of Teleocity

    Age:
    65
    Jun 24, 2006
    Fort Worth,Tx.
    I like the mallory's better than the orange drops myself. Just my preference.
    I wouldn't spend extra money just to get Blue. I do like the Sprague Atoms, but I'm thinking F&T are probably just as good.
    I don't scrimp on something I build for myself. The price difference between the best parts and just okay parts isn't going to be that great in a one time build.
     
  3. gearjunkie

    gearjunkie Tele-Meister

    424
    Jul 29, 2011
    SW Ontario
    Telex, I was thinking blue cause thats about only colour they have thats consistant and it does look sharp.

    Again, with all the different electrolytic and coupling caps. polypropylene vs paper in oil, paper in wax, paper in oyster sauce,
    $2 ea vs $20ea, does it Really make that much tonal difference besides bragging rights and knowing you have the best money can buy in there...
     
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  5. FenderLover

    FenderLover Friend of Leo's

    Jun 11, 2009
    Minnesota
    Getting older myself, I realize that everything I build or buy will again be for sale eventually, so I don't scrimp on hardware or electrical components unless experience says otherwise. Experience falls into personal taste with electrical components, so if you haven't picked your favorite cap or transformer, the extra cost for one amp build shouldn't put you out. See if you like it. Bragging rights and cosmetics are also a personal thing, so realize what you have into it and what you expect to get back out.
     
  6. BobbyZ

    BobbyZ Poster Extraordinaire

    Jan 12, 2011
    Snellman MN
    Boy if you guys saw the guts of the 5e3 I built you'd laugh !
    The caps all came out of the junk drawer. Some old black Spragues and two blue Mallarys. The three filter caps are out of a 67 BFDR. The chassis is from an organ and is full of holes. Tag board? Terminal strips.
    Wierd thing is it rocks ! Got a bunch of parts coming (maybe today) I want to replace the filter caps and one 25V-25uf (other two are new)
    I need to build a cab for it cause it's been in a Weber 18 watt cab. I like it better than the 18 watt however.
     
  7. gearjunkie

    gearjunkie Tele-Meister

    424
    Jul 29, 2011
    SW Ontario
    I understand where both you gentlemen are coing from, but some say it's worth spending the extra money on better wire even, caps etc, but where does one draw the line..
     
  8. printer2

    printer2 Poster Extraordinaire

    May 24, 2010
    Canada
    Have a whole lot of 22uF 350v caps that came out of electronic florescent bulb ballasts that no longer work. Power transformers are 1:1 isolation transformers, combination of point-to-point or perf boards, power jacks and switches from computer power supplies, scrounged parts...
     
  9. BobbyZ

    BobbyZ Poster Extraordinaire

    Jan 12, 2011
    Snellman MN
    Thanks Printer but the junk drawer is still kind'a full.
     
  10. AlabamaOutlaw

    AlabamaOutlaw Tele-Meister

    197
    Feb 20, 2011
    Alabama
    If it can't be seen and works as intended then it's fine. As far as the Chassis and Cabs ect. If its gonna stay in the studio yes.com spend some money if you like. In the back of the van or trailor? On the way to a smokey bar? Nothing matters to me but reliability and tone.
     
  11. printer2

    printer2 Poster Extraordinaire

    May 24, 2010
    Canada
    Best kind of junk drawer.
     
  12. Hoopermazing

    Hoopermazing Tele-Holic

    As someone else on this forum said (if I remembered who, I'd give him/her credit) Oil & paper is the only way to go. The oil lubricates the electrons and makes the current flow faster.
     
  13. FenderLover

    FenderLover Friend of Leo's

    Jun 11, 2009
    Minnesota
    I know people who say the same thing, but I have yet to meet anyone who can tell what components an amp is made out of when listening to it. Remember there are motives for suggesting such things as silver wire, etc. too. It sounds like you should try a few of these ideas and decide for yourself, as probably all DIY amp builders do. If the cost difference is minimal, go for it. Go as far as buying two different caps and swap them yourself for comparison. It's my personal opinion that most of the sound quality an amp produces is due to the OT/speaker combination, but the exceptions are for you to experience. After you spend most of your cash on good iron and speakers, the rest may seem trivial to you also. I can't tell the difference between orang drops and Mallorys, but I use Mallorys in Tweeds and orange drops on blackfaces because that's what I believe most people expect to SEE. Can they hear it? Usually only after they see it.
    If you're building an amp you hope to sell, showcasing your talents as a builder - get out the checkbook and give 'em what they 'want'.
     
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