AC15 to Blues JR?

Discussion in 'Amp Central Station' started by logankolarick, Jun 29, 2017.

  1. logankolarick

    logankolarick Tele-Meister

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    I currently have a Vox ac15. I liked it at first, but I have a few things that keep me from wanting to keep 7it. First of all, it weighs too much (I know some of you think 50 pounds is nothing compared to a 70 pound twin, but 50 pounds for a 15 watt amp seems insane to me.) secondly, The chime of the amp is starting to make me sick. I love the tone of Vox amps when other people play them, but I cannot for the life of me enjoy it with my own playing. It's bright but in an annoying way with my playing. And thirdly, The reverb tank rattles (atleast I think it's the reverb tank) and thats a common thing with ac15s.

    I want an American sounding amp. Fender I think being the way to go. It would be nice to get a bad cat, a jackson, or a third power, but let's be real here.... I can't afford that crap.

    I know Blues JRs are really popular bedroom amps, and a lot of people have success gigging with them, but what is your opinion on that? Does Fender have another tube option in the 30lb range? Would it be smarter to go head and cab instead of combo? If so what's your suggestion? Help?
     
  2. brookdalebill

    brookdalebill Tele Axpert Ad Free Member

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    I don't care for any Fender EL84 amps.
    To me, they are wannabe AC15/30s.
    They sound hard and bright to me, and the reverb is typically harsh.
    For an American sounding amp, I'd look for a "real" SF Deluxe Reverb, not a reissue.
    Great sounding, common workhorse amps.
     
  3. jannodude

    jannodude Tele-Afflicted

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    I would pick a Princeton Reissue or Deluxe Reverb over a Blues Jr. if you can't get a non reissue BF/SF Deluxe Reverb.
     
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  4. Southpaw Tele

    Southpaw Tele Friend of Leo's

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    My Blues Jr. has mellowed out with about 20 hrs of playing time. Not as harsh sounding. The reverb tank needs replacing, but I use a Boss RV-6 for my 'verb, so it's lower on my list. I bought the BillM basic mods kit for $24, but haven't installed it yet. I mainly bought the kit for the adjustable bias mod. The BJ is very light and easy to haul to my church every Sunday. It's a great clean platform for pedals. I use an EHX Crayon (always on, for the most part) and an EHX Glove for grittier stuff. Eventually, I'll install the BillM mods and a Cannabis Rex speaker, but I like it as is for now.
     
  5. Southpaw Tele

    Southpaw Tele Friend of Leo's

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    And I looked hard at the AC-15, but the weight and extra 100 bucks swayed me towards the BJ.
     
  6. Bob M

    Bob M Tele-Afflicted Ad Free Member

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    I have had the AC15 and the Blues Jr. and frankly the Super Champ x2 with a 12" speaker is a better option-for me at least. The Vox is crazy heavy. I also agree with the Fender EL84 comment. I've had the SCx2 for 3 years and it sounds great still. It competes sonically in my house with a couple of mid-60s Ampegs and a '65 Tremolux and it has held it's own. The AC15 lasted a month. Blues Jr. maybe 3 months.
     
  7. scottser

    scottser Tele-Afflicted

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    i couldn't agree more bob. a friend of mine got one recently and i sat behind the kit for him to test it - it sounds fantastic in the room with a band and on its own.
     
  8. Shunka

    Shunka TDPRI Member

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    Yes good reply's for sure.....I like the blues JR, this time around the tweed with jensen speaker, sounds very fendery and plays great clean or I have read with pedals. I have the 6l6 fenders and the 6v6 ones, for me the JR plays gigs, plays at home, is happy riding in the trunk [cover] and does it quite nicely.
    Happy with the sound here perfect ?....no.... but what is.... Have fun deciding, its a good problem to have.
     
  9. JORear

    JORear Tele-Meister

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    I have a BlackStar HT40 and like it. I have a good clean and all the gain I want from the 2nd channel. I use a Bad Monkey to throw some dirt on my clean and a TS9 for any lead. Its a perfect amp for me and the different tones I need when playing.
    If I was looking for a classic rock/bluesy/ clean amp, I would try a Fender Bassbreaker 15 watt.
     
  10. jackinjax

    jackinjax Friend of Leo's

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    I like my Blues Jr III, but, while playing my Telecaster, especially up on the fifth fret and above, it will definitely take on a pronounced chime, unless I roll the treble way down. What I do is soften my attack on the B and E strings a little when I get up there.
    No chiming from my LP.
     
  11. irie

    irie Tele-Holic

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    The blues junior is a good amp in a portable package. It has a good clean tone, and if you throw a pedal board in front of it and it can cover a whole lot tones. Its only 15 Watts so keep that in mind as far as your expectations surrounding volume and headroom but there is a reason so many people gig them successfully.
     
  12. MA6200

    MA6200 Tele-Meister

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    There's no fixing the weight, but have you tried being really agressive with the tone cut?

    Could also try a blue in it but it's pricy.
     
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  13. thegeezer

    thegeezer Tele-Afflicted

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    To each his own, but I had a Blues JR for a couple of years with the intent of using it as a light, cheap grab and go. I personally just never could make it work. I'm in the camp that EL 84 Fenders are not the way to go.

    It went down the road. I'm don't claim to be the last word on tone but it seems to me there's a lot of better stuff floating around used out there.
     
  14. bendercaster

    bendercaster Tele-Holic

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    I think you might be moving in the wrong direction. The BJ was my first tube amp, and while I liked it, I ultimately replaced it with an AC15, which I love. I liked the size and weight of if, but when I started playing in a band again, and the BJ just sounded really boxy to me.

    The Vox is heavy, but that is the only thing I don't like about it. How long have you had it? It eats power tubes, so if it has been a few years, it might be worth replacing them. Mine was starting to sound thin and overly trebley. I changed tubes, rolled the tone cut back a little and it is a monster again.

    There is nothing wrong with the BJ, but if you are itching to change, maybe look at a Deluxe Reverb.
     
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  15. dmoss74

    dmoss74 Tele-Holic

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    i've had my ac15 for about three years now (i think) and i love it. i have grown to think it is pretty much the ideal amp for my fender guitars. it plays extremely well with the les pauls, too. it's a great little amp. i did-however-swap out all the junk tubes and replace them with some good old nos stuff (sylvania, amperex, etc).

    my son has the bjIII, and it's a decent amp, but to me (again, my ears, not anyone else's), i like the vox for the single coils much better. his amp does something magical with the lp neck pickups though, that the vox can't get. which is strange, considering they are both el84 amps.

    the weight of the ac15 doesn't bother me at all. i was used to lugging around a marshall 4104 50w 2x12 combo for years. this is a featherweight in comparison. :)

    get whatever your ears like. weight considerations aren't deal breakers for me.
     
  16. DannyStereo

    DannyStereo Poster Extraordinaire

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    What Bill said. I've TRIED to love Blues Juniors but just not my thing.

    Plus, the AC15 shines in a mix. At home, sure, it can be a bit bright. But get with a bassist and drummer and you'll occupy a nice space in the sonic "landscape".

    And get a mover's dolly and wheel the thing around.
     
  17. logankolarick

    logankolarick Tele-Meister

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    I've pulled the tone cut back to like 9 oclock. After that it gets too muddy. I typically have it around 11 oclock. I have the bass control at 3 oclock and the treble at 10 oclock.
     
  18. logankolarick

    logankolarick Tele-Meister

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    I've had it like two years. I guess I could try new tubes.
     
  19. DannyStereo

    DannyStereo Poster Extraordinaire

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    I bet that would help. A lot.
     
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  20. studio1087

    studio1087 Telefied Silver Supporter

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    I understand the dilemma. I've had a Blues Jr forever and I used my Blues Jr mic'd at many gigs.

    I had an AC15C1 in mint condition that I bought off Craigslist. I had enjoyed my Night Train and Pathfinders and when I bought the AC15C1 I felt like I won the lottery.

    I have loved AC15 recordings by I had a very difficult time getting a good sound out of mine. It was very brittle. I liked the crispy top but I couldn't dial any warmth under it.

    This may sound insane but I sold the AC15C1 on Craigslist for $350 and I bought a new AC15C1 at Guitar Center and I like the AC10 better because it's much warmer the 10 watt amp has bass.

    The AC15 does weigh 50 pounds and it's bigger than my Deluxe Reverb. It's a big heavy amp.

    I don't think of Blues Jr as a bedroom amp; they're way too loud. They are smaller and lighter than an AC15 which is good. I put an Eminence Red White Blues speaker in my BJ (bought it used and nicely broken in for $49) and the volume and bass increased very much.

    I like BJ's over AC15's.
     
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