Anyone else not fond of working on PCB amps?

Discussion in 'Amp Tech Center' started by dougstrum, Nov 29, 2017.

  1. archiemax

    archiemax Tele-Meister

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    I have developed a deep loathing for those cheesy little plastic 1/4" jacks that mount to the PCB, particularly the kind that don't have a nut to secure them to the chassis---Unless the unit, be it an amp or processor or whatever, is part of a "fixed location" rig, eventually those solder nubs are gonna crack and your pooch is screwed. Fortunately you don't see these much anymore but they were a staple on the old Dano stomp boxes and gear like the Kawai GB-2 (which I use 3 of).
     
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  2. dougstrum

    dougstrum Tele-Holic

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    Yeah~ they sure don't instill confidence...
     
  3. 24 track

    24 track Doctor of Teleocity

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    Some one gave me a A fender Jam solid state amp it croaked but barely ( some one tried to feed it beer ) then replaced the Nylon PCB mounted 1/4 inch jacks with standard chassis mounted to chassis ground the board looked like a burnt marsh mallow, I pulled all of the chips and mounted them with sockets placed the reverb springs in/out onto an RCA outlet and reininforced the burnt traces with some strong wire to replace the damaged trace , then replaced the jacks , its a nice sounding practice amp but the spring reverb is noisy and appears to create an interferrance whem in proximity to the amp, , not quite sure on that one yet so i use the effects loop with an ART multi effects for reverb / delay or flange, the onboard Chorus is nice sounding , FMIC sent me the schematics for the amp ( I was surprised at that though)
     
  4. OneHenry

    OneHenry Tele-Holic

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    I hate tubes being attached to PCBs. Too much heat and too much weight, plus stress when replacing tubes mounted on PCBs. Transistors and op amps are OK on PCBs. Input and output jacks also suck when mounted on PCBs.
     
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  5. JD0x0

    JD0x0 Poster Extraordinaire

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    I've found PCB's are generally pretty easy to repair if you use the right tools and temp on your iron. I'm definitely not fond of traces that lift easily, but it can be avoided 99.5% of the time with a decent hand, and right temp and tip on your iron.

    Sometimes PCB's are easier to repair than 'handwired' stuff. You ever work on a cramped P2P amp?

    The biggest thing about PCB's that bothers me, is when they cheap out on components, then those components fail and damage the board. That's usually annoying to deal with when everything is charred to bits..
     
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  6. DavidP

    DavidP Friend of Leo's

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    They don't make PCB traces like they used to.... I did a recap of all electrolytics on a Music Man RD 65 and it had bomb-proof traces!!! The traces on the recent Fender stuff come loose even if you just look at them with a soldering iron in hand -- won't touch them!!
     
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  7. BryMelvin

    BryMelvin Tele-Afflicted

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    I really like working on old stuff better. Tiny surface mount resistors drive me insane.
     
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  8. Andy B

    Andy B Friend of Leo's Ad Free Member

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    In my mostly retired status I draw the line at surface mount components and most newer solid state equipment. Not worth the hassle. As for parts availability, I tell my customers ip front that if I can’t come up with the right replacement part they get the unit back unrepaired at no charge. Since I mostly work for a small number of wholesale accounts, it is not an issue.
     
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  9. dogmeat

    dogmeat Tele-Afflicted

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    jacks soldered to the pc board.... who ever invented that idea needs... ahhh.... unusual treatment. in public.... in front of his children
     
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  10. Silverface

    Silverface Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

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    As others have mentioned it depends on the amp. Old JCM800? - no problem. Hot Rod Deluxe - average 30% higher labor cost. Some are made in ways that make it more difficult to track down issues and/or access parts. More time = higher charges. Many players are surprised that it cost them less to have a Super Reverb serviced, but there's a lot to be said for accessibility.
     
  11. FenderLover

    FenderLover Friend of Leo's

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    If you've ever serviced an old VOX you know why they have earned the title of "Serviceman's Nightmare".
     
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  12. Platefire

    Platefire Friend of Leo's

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    Sorry bogus post
     
  13. Telecastoff1

    Telecastoff1 Tele-Holic

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    I earned my "soldering skills wings" back in the 70's when I repaired and modified CB radios for a living. Even back then, there were excellent and cheapo pcb's we had to work with. Most of the time it wasn't too bad. I quit doing that 25 years ago, when it was not profitable anymore, with the advent of disposable CB's. My eyes are older now and soldering hand less steady. I wouldn't even dream of working on a pcb-based amp these days, unless it was my own. Hats off to you great techs out there that are willing to work on them and perform great work on them as well!
     
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  14. TokyoPortrait

    TokyoPortrait Tele-Holic

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    My phone cut the header off to "Anyone else not fond of working" so my answer was going to be, "yep."
     
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  15. Wally

    Wally Telefied Ad Free Member

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    Okay...would you work on this PCb amp? Tape recorder, soldano 003.jpg Tape recorder, soldano 002.jpg Tape recorder, soldano 002.jpg Tape recorder, soldano 001.jpg

    Thoughts??
     
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  16. Andy B

    Andy B Friend of Leo's Ad Free Member

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    As long as I had a schematic. The radial caps make it a pain in the ass. At least it is single sided.
     
  17. JD0x0

    JD0x0 Poster Extraordinaire

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    Um yeah, that's pretty nice as far as PCB goes. I just recapped an amp like this and didn't even come CLOSE to lifting any of the traces. It was a little upsetting finding some components literally just tack soldered onto the traces, though.





    Overrated. You can do a ton of work 'blind' so to speak. I didn't reference a schematic once doing this service...


    33642757_1992667860797828_5980349472683589632_n.jpg 33601987_1992668207464460_1622168860905963520_n.jpg
     
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  18. Andy B

    Andy B Friend of Leo's Ad Free Member

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    Don't always need it but if I’m not familiar with an amp I like having a schematic. I find it useful to check components when I can’t get directly to a lead.
     
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  19. Wally

    Wally Telefied Ad Free Member

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    I was actually a bit surprised to see how the amp above was built. I had not expected to see the
    noval sockets to be PCB-mounted.....or the pots and jacks to be the same. I personally have no problem working on a quality PCB such as this.....it is a high quality board, no doubt. Fwiw, the construction of a Fender Pro Sonic is superior in some ways to this high dollar boutique amp, imho. The Pro Sonic has all tube sockets, pots and jacks chassis-mounted.
     
  20. keithb7

    keithb7 Friend of Leo's

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    "Not fond of..." That's sure polite. Are you from the South?
    Up here we wear plaid, drink Molson beer and say, "@#!% that". LOL.
    Well, not all of us. But plenty do. :D
     
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