1989 Mesa Boogie Studio .22

Discussion in 'Amp Central Station' started by GaryOsborne, Feb 17, 2014.

  1. Bugeyed Earl

    Bugeyed Earl Tele-Meister

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    FWIW, my caps weren't exactly "bad", but I think they were the ones it shipped with. The tone after the new caps was clearly better, most noticeably on the bass end of the spectrum.
     
  2. GaryOsborne

    GaryOsborne RIP

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    I'm ordering a whole retube kit in the next couple days. I'm probably just gonna go with Mesa tubes because I know it won't have to be biased. But I'd really like to try a different brand. Maybe JJs or some NOS stuff but I don't want to pay to have it biased. If it doesn't sound like it's old self after the retube then I'll consider the cap job/look over by a tech. But from what I'm hearing, that could be 200$ or more which is like half of what I paid for the thing! Uggggh.
     
  3. Frodebro

    Frodebro Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    If you order the tubes from a vendor who is worth his salt, all you have to do is let him know which amp they're going into and he'll provide you with a set of power tubes that are in the correct range for your amp. Mesas are fixed bias, so "adjusting" the bias on them requires changing out components-they're not something where you put a meter on 'em and turn a screw to adjust it.
     
  4. GaryOsborne

    GaryOsborne RIP

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    Yes but if I buy mesa tubes I don't have to bias right?
     
  5. Frodebro

    Frodebro Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    Yep. Plug & play. I've got three Mesas, and I've never bothered with experimenting with non-Mesa power tubes.
     
  6. GaryOsborne

    GaryOsborne RIP

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    Where do you buy mesa brand tubes?
    I saw these kits on eBay. They offer varying qualities of sets (primo, ultimo, etc)

    http://m.ebay.com/itm/191022436774?nav=WATCHING_ACTIVE

    But they're mixes of JJs and EHs and other stuff to give you the best they have abd it says they test everything. But they're not mesa brand.
    But if you look in the description it says they're "plug and play"
    If Mesa tubes are better with mesa amps then that's what I want, but could you give me link to where to buy them?
    Otherwise I'll try these. Maybe not the top dollar "gold pin" set. I think they have a kit in the 65-70$ range.
     
  7. wildschwein

    wildschwein Tele-Afflicted

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  8. GaryOsborne

    GaryOsborne RIP

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    Yeah I probably will. I'd still like to know where to buy Mesa brand tubes though. Anyone? Bueller? Bueller?
     
  9. Frodebro

    Frodebro Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    My local independent is a Mesa dealer, they have everything in stock. And they're four miles from my house...
     
  10. milocj

    milocj Friend of Leo's Ad Free Member

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    Guitar Center used to carry the Mesa tubes, though I didn't see them at my local store the last time I was there.

    I don't recall if it was mentioned earlier in the thread, but afaik Mesa tests and re-brands other manufacturer's tubes just like GT does. They just sort out the ones that fall within the correct bias range for their amps which is why folks are suggesting alternative sources that may be less expensive or easier to find.
     
  11. GaryOsborne

    GaryOsborne RIP

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    Ahhhhhhhhh. Thank you.
     
  12. GaryOsborne

    GaryOsborne RIP

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    I was just looking in the back of my amp and it kinda seemed like it would be a nightmare to change the tubes. Especially the preamps. It looks like you have to remove the entire chassis which I've never done and am sketchy about trying on my only amp currently lol.
     
  13. wildschwein

    wildschwein Tele-Afflicted

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    You shouldn't have to go that far. Maybe try turning the amp on its head and use a small torch so you can see the pin alignment. I use to own the Calibre 50+ which is the .22s big brother -- I recall changing the tubes on that without too much of an issue.
     
  14. GaryOsborne

    GaryOsborne RIP

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    Any other tips? Really don't wanna pay for tubes and pay for them to be installed.
     
  15. Frodebro

    Frodebro Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    Pulling the chassis is a lot easier than it would appear. Disconnect the reverb pan, remove the four screws on the top of the cabinet, and slide it out.
     
  16. Bugeyed Earl

    Bugeyed Earl Tele-Meister

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    You don't need to pull the chassis to swap out tubes, you just need to unclip the tube retainer and let it swing down. Yours may be held up by zip ties - just cut them and replace with new ones when you're done (or use wire twist ties.)
     
  17. GaryOsborne

    GaryOsborne RIP

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    I think there are zip ties, but weird zip ties. I'll take pic when I get a sec
     
  18. notyalcer

    notyalcer Tele-Meister

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    The aluminum tube protection plate is held oin place by nylon stand-offs that snap into place on the plate. There is hi-temp foam running the length of the channels in the plate, that compress onto the preamp and power tubes to stabilize them and keep them secure. To replace tubes you have to unsnap the connector and the plate will swing down. Replacing tubes is as easy as any other amp once you do this. Just line up the pins and gently push them in.

    On my .22, several years ago one of the standoffs snaps broke, then the other one, making them useless. I used two long threaded machines screws as replacements, to hold the tube plate in place. It took four nuts per screw to make it work. Will take a photo later. Before I came up with this I used twist ties and zip ties, but was worried about upward impact on the plate because I tended to put stuff in the back of the amp. The original standoffs would prevent this, and the machine screw fix also accomplishes this - however, to change tubes is more of a procedure and not one you'd want to be doing on a dark stage.
     
  19. GaryOsborne

    GaryOsborne RIP

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    I finally got around to it. JJs and a tone kit from Doug's Tubes for the preamp. Gotta say, it was a bit of a PITA to get to the V1 slot. Easy to pull the old one out, a little tough lining the new one up. Sounds a lot better now, I think there's a little rattle now but I can deal with it.
     
  20. waparker4

    waparker4 Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    So which preamp tubes did you use?
     
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