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Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups

NAD 5E7 tweed Bandmaster clone

Discussion in 'Amp Central Station' started by Alex W, May 31, 2012.

  1. Alex W

    Alex W Friend of Leo's

    I had thought that I might buy a 5E7 Bandmaster clone someday. I wasn't really in the market for another amp currently until this one showed up used at a nearby store at a price I could not pass up. Aside from the cost savings of buying used, it came with the advantage of having been made by a local amp builder, Bob Burriss. According to the label this one was made back in 2004, when he would have been still accepting custom orders as opposed to manufacturing a specified line of models (Royal Bluesman, Dirty Red, etc). It just arrived at the office and I haven't even had a chance to get it home and fire it up yet. It has three Eminence speakers: Ragin' Cajun, Ramrod, and Legend.


  2. Wally

    Wally Telefied Ad Free Member

    Mar 17, 2003
    Lubbock, TX
    Congrats.....Looks like the first one of these that he built if the serial number means anything. ???Eminence LEgend??? which one...there are more than one....1058 ceramic, Alk1028 alnico.... Regardless, that should make for a nice amp.
    The 5E7/5F4/5E5-a circuit is one of my favorites.

  3. Wally

    Wally Telefied Ad Free Member

    Mar 17, 2003
    Lubbock, TX
    And...that FEnder BAndmaster badge might be worth something to someone with a real 5E7 Bandmaster. Imho, a Burris badge would look better on the amp....and make the amp less 'theft-worthy'.

  4. Alex W

    Alex W Friend of Leo's

    I have no intention of modifying or parting out this amp in that way, and besides I myself might own a real 5E7 Bandmaster someday so it's "worth something" to me in that respect as well.

    It is not clear to me exactly what subtype of Eminence Legend speaker it is other than it appears to be an alnico speaker with a smallish magnet. The Ramrod and the Ragin' Cajun both appear to be ceramic magnet speakers.



  5. kosmonautmayhem

    kosmonautmayhem Tele-Meister

    Jan 11, 2010
    Great Score! I've been lurking about for some clips of tweed bandmasters...while I contemplate a tweed build of some sort.
    Would love to know how it compares / contrasts to your other amps...


  6. Wally

    Wally Telefied Ad Free Member

    Mar 17, 2003
    Lubbock, TX
    Alex, that is the LEgend ALK1028.....30-watt speaker. Eminence used to build two Alnico's....the ALP(paper former) and the higher wattage ALK(Kapton former). They stopped building the paper former version prior to 2004, IIRC>
    The ALP is the speaker that FEnder used in the early 5F6A Reissu BAssman amps....very close to the vintage Jensen P10R. The Kapton former ALK is a higher wattage speaker than any vintage JEnsen Alnico.
    I wasn't suggesting a parting out when I mentioned the badge. I simply like to see builder's take some personal pride in what they build and put their own name on there. I would keep the FEnder badge for future use, too, if it was good enough in comparison to an original badge.

    Enjoy that amp...they like to sing, don't they?

  7. Webfoot

    Webfoot Tele-Holic

    Jan 13, 2007
    Congrats on a great find....

    Also have been considering a 5E7 build as I have been able to play through a real 1955 Bandmaster with 60 year old P10Rs. Really curious to hear how it sounds and how it compares to other amps (how would you rank it?). What I like about it is that when I do classic rock and a dirt pedal, there are mids I can work with where as my DRRI is too scooped. This 5E7 had very responsive tone controls and both channels had something different to offer (even though they look the same on the schematic). It had a incredible tactile playing feel and was the most natural sounding amp I have played.

    Many years ago I bought a Bassman LTD. After struggling with the P10Rs (I don't think I broke them in enough) I decided I needed to replace. So went the Weber routed and was suggested two ceramics and two alnicos both high wattage. I ended up liking the amp less. It was too big and bassy sounding and the weight was now about 15 lbs heavier. I wish I would have stayed with smaller wattage speakers.

    It will be interesting to see how you like the Ramrod or Ragin Cajun. To test it out you will need to find a big stage and stand 20' away. I was hesitant to turn up the 1955 Bandmaster as it was not mine and I did not want to blow out a speaker etc. But I think I read it will break up earlier then a bassman (plus the bandmaster had 12ax7s for the first preamp tubes).

  8. Alex W

    Alex W Friend of Leo's

    Thanks for the info on the speakers.

    Having bought the amp used, nearly 8 years after its manufacture, I can't say much about the nameplate. I suspect that the amp was a special order, one-off replica back when the maker was working as a one-man shop.

    Burriss Amps has really grown. I had the pleasure of seeing Emmylou Harris in concert recently. Many of her recordings have amazing electric guitar parts, with amazing, spacey, reverb- and tremolo-soaked sounds, and I was really looking forward to hearing the material live. I was surprised to see that her guitarist for the tour, Will Kimbrough, was playing through a Burriss Royal Bluesman and a matching 1x12 cab. Kimbrough was fabulous and the sonic experience was all I could have hoped for. (Emmylou wasn't bad either...)

  9. Wally

    Wally Telefied Ad Free Member

    Mar 17, 2003
    Lubbock, TX
    FWIW, the 5E7 BAndmaster came with a 12AY7 in V1 and a 12AX7 in V2 and V3. The PRo 5E5-A is shown to have 12AY7's in V1 and V2 with a 12AX7 PI.
    The 5F4 Super used the same arrangement as did the 5E7.
    these amps all break up earlier than the 5F6A. They are not as punchy.
    They 'sing' more than does the punchier Bassman amp. One big reason for this is the smaller OT, imo.

  10. Alex W

    Alex W Friend of Leo's

    If it isn't overwhelmingly technical, can you explain why a smaller output transformer makes it sing more? (i.e. I think I can digest some technical info but not if it gets into quantum mechanics.)

  11. Wally

    Wally Telefied Ad Free Member

    Mar 17, 2003
    Lubbock, TX
    Alex, I don't think I could overwhelm anyone here with a technical analysis because I dont' have the technical background to do that.
    but....a smaller OT saturates earlier than does a larger OT. When an OT satutrates, there is a compression-type of reaction...and an amp will want to sustain the notes in a certain way. I call it 'singing' is a type of distortion and should happen about the same time that the PI and the output tubes or the preamp for that matter hit the inception of distortion. Seme folks...the late KEn Fisher of Trainwreck amp fame for example...feel/felt that all sections of an amp should hit that point of distortion at exactly the same time. A larger OT such as in the 5F6A Bassman will be punchier than teh 5E7/5F4/5E5-A amps becuase its saturation point is will create more power before hitting this saturation/distortion point in the OT.
    This aspect of the 5E7 is a big part of what WEbfoot was referring to as a 'tactile playing feel'. By the time one gets a 5F6A into/close to this zone, it is much louder than the BAndmaster will be.
    this is the reason why in the past many people would change out the smaller OT's in some FEnder amps for a larger transformer. This was done---among many other things-- to SRV's Vibroverbs to make them 'cleaner' and punchier. IN today's world, one might want to go the other way. PEople are looking for less volume on stage, and the smaller OT would lend itself better to this approach.
    HOpefully, someone with more technical understanding will come onboard to further explain and/or correct my thoughts on this....or you can google something like 'tube amp output tranformer saturation' and read to your heart's content.

  12. Alex W

    Alex W Friend of Leo's

    Cool. Thanks.

  13. RubyRae

    RubyRae Friend of Leo's

    Dec 8, 2009
    Alex, I must say you have been on a hot streak for the past year or so.
    Everytime I see a N*D post from you, it is something really nice that I have been thinking about. This one takes the cake! Great score man. Congrats!

    I have been lusting after the Clark version of this 5E7 amp, but since they are so expensive I have been looking at other options. Enjoy.

  14. jipp

    jipp Friend of Leo's

    what a cool amp. and i do agree about the builder putting there name on there products, but can see if it was a custom order being a one man job. you make the customer happy period. heh. none the less. im jealous. and you are lucky to hear her sing. she has always been a such a graceful women. from the youtube videos of her youthful days to her golden. she is a class act ( lot of these women artist could learn a thing or too from her how to act, instead of wearing nothing to get attention. ). yeah i love all kinds of music. except what they are calling country right now. i mean when you hear the same song on the rock station.. rant over. laughs. enjoy your new baby.

  15. Alex W

    Alex W Friend of Leo's

    Thanks. I really didn't mean to buy one of these right now but they rarely pop up used and it was about half what a new one would cost me. I had passed up a couple of Victoria 35310s that Guitar Center had online, each used and priced at about $1300. I kept thinking and thinking about it and eventually they sold before I got off the fence. So when this one popped up at Guitar Emporium in Louisville for even less than that, I jumped on it. Prior to this recent purchase I was considering ordering one from somebody out there and I was expecting that it would cost $1800 or more.

    I just got to finally fire it it up late tonight. My initial impressions are that it is loud and sparkly/shimmering. I have never had an amp with a presence control before. I didn't really get to crank it up yet so I can't say much about sustain and crunch and so on. It also hums pretty loud, although once you play through it, the volume is so loud that it isn't noticeable. Whether or not the hum represents a problem to fix or a trait to get used to, I don't know yet. But it's definitely a loud, powerful amp and needs some space to spread its wings.

    So in short I am still getting to know it. In the meantime here's a pic I took once I got it home:


  16. RubyRae

    RubyRae Friend of Leo's

    Dec 8, 2009
    Nice pic Alex. I'm sure this amp will take some time getting to know well.
    Keep us posted. Hopefully that hum is something simple to fix, if at all needed.

    I am really impressed with the short clip of the Burriss Shadow Amp.
    Be interested in some more clips and reviews of that one too.

  17. Alex W

    Alex W Friend of Leo's

    Oh, I don't own a Burriss Shadow. If you saw a clip of one on the Burriss website that was probably some professional guitarist or other such gunslinger.

    I am still trying to make time to learn how to post some videos of stuff myself.

  18. bunny 7

    bunny 7 Tele-Holic

    Apr 14, 2012
    Louisville, Ky.
    Congratulations on a fine amp. I looked at that shortly after it came in and thought it was so cool. Didn't have time to play through it that day tho.
    I'm usually in Guitar Emporium most every Saturday looking around. There was a cool Valvetrain tweedtype amp there that was cool too. Pretty much all my stuff comes from there.
    Glad it's in the TDPRI family in a good home :D

    I've been thinking about tweed amps, but I went with Wampler's Tweed '57 pedal to test the waters so to speak, congrats and enjoy playing it.

  19. Ike286

    Ike286 Tele-Holic

    Sep 13, 2011
    I built a tweed bandmaster clone, but its just a chassis so no 3x10s, but I just today ran it through two 2x12's, one open back the other closed, and cranked it up, it sounds awesome. although really it sounds more like a tweed super, as the bandmaster tone is so much 3x10's and the slight impedance mismatch involved there, but it sounds so wonderful with my tele. I think if I needed twang, that would be what I'd pick. I can get twang with so many other amps that I have/have played, but this one has some of the greatest twang for sure. It is so wonderful, plus then you turn it up, and it goes into Marshall killer territory a little, and it has blissful drive, I love it. The bandmaster, even though it has almost EXACTLY the same schematic as the pro/super/LP twin, of that era, even through the same cabinets, just has more mojo it seems, its wonderful.

    I'm thankful for this amp for sure recently, as the '55 5d3 deluxe at home is starting to crap out a little and it is almost at the point of, shouldn't even be fixed just because it is so old, and just needs to be retired, and yes, (and sadly) every component in the amp has been replaced, except hardware, pots and trannys, so ALL caps, ...and resistors, but it, just, should probably be retired, BUT where i was going with this is, I have a tweed amp handy now, and really I like the bandmaster better than the deluxe anyway, so. ;-)

  20. neils

    neils TDPRI Member

    Jul 4, 2013
    Northeast USA
    Hi there,

    Regarding the hum. I sold this year a 5F6a clone built by a local who knows what he is doing. I only play single coil guitars and yes there was some hum.
    All I had to do was move and play the thing. Hum gone.

    The D*&k who bought it froze the Paypal money until he insisted his tech look for the hum. I was stuck. We had it looked at. I tracked down the tech in the Dallas/FW area and spoke to him. Great guy.

    He told me he rewired this to that cause the preamp was wired blah blah just like Fender did. I said what? He said the way they wired the 5F6a (and maybe yours) could create noise/hum. There WAS a way around that that he knew so he did it but the amp was built and wired well and to spec.

    So that amp and maybe your BM was correct and could hum. It never bugged me in the least.

    So I lost money on the deal. The new owner sucks but the amp is quieter.


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