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Discussion in 'Amp Central Station' started by Bete Noir, Mar 17, 2003.
I'm considering an Allen Accomplice Amp kit. Anyone have any feedback on these? Thanks
I don't think you can go wrong with the Accomplice. I've heard Bo Ramsey
play his through the built in speaker as well as through a 4x10 cab, pretty
amazing tone. I personally ordered the Old Flame from David 'cause I
already have a SFDR and was looking for something with a little more
wattage and with a 2x10 configuration. Can't say enough about this amp.
My only complaint about buying an Allan amp is that it sounds so good my
other amps are collecting dust.
The really cool thing, IMO, is that with the easy bias adjustment you can
swithch out tubes depending on the occasion. In general the Accomplice
has pretty good head room, but if you need more, just put in some 6l6s,
rebias, and there you go. I've put some 6V6s in my Old Flame and the
thing just roars.
And, really, the coolest thing of all is David Allen. If you have questions,
you just call him up and he'll talk to you. I'm just a nobody from Iowa, but
still, David took the time to answer my questions. It's a little scary to
plunk down the dollars on something you can't play through first, but David
will go a long way to make sure you're getting the amp you want.
I have been playing through the Allen Encore--2-10's 40 watts-great sounding, high quality and very versatile with the "raw" knob.
The Accomplice is pretty much a DR stlye amp that's been "juiced"--again great tone and very 3 dimensional in the 2-10 version.
KBR from the page uses a couple Old Flames and I'm sure there are some other guys who may have one(Jim Collins I think built 3 Allens)
I would find it really unusual if you DIDN'T like the way the Accomplice sounds---to be really honest with you--through all the investigating I've done on the Allens--I have yet to find ONE person that doesn't like their tone---pretty impressive stuff---
I bought an Old Flame from the garage sale about 4 mos ago. It was built by David Allen last March. They are built like tanks, very solid. Loud, rich BF clean tone. add a touch of the Raw knob for grit. The reverb is as good as any. It works well with pedals. I don't really use the Master as the clean tone is just so fine.
No actual experience with the Allens, but I recently looked 'em up after a post on the old board, and I'm very impressed with what I see of Mr. Allen's whole operation. I'm really trying to find a reason to same a couple of pennys and get myself a Class Act kit to tinker with. I'm just scared it'll wind up like most of my other projects... Fortunately it comes with all the parts I'll need, so I won't have to hunt for them, which usually dooms my other endevors. Plus complete assembly instructions? Sounds like a good deal to me!
Is the Encore the one with vibrato that is somewhat like a Vibrolux?
If so, how does the vibrato sound, like a black or brown face type?
In my research I read a couple of reviews on the Encore. One of them specificaly mentioned that the reviewer was thinking of tinkering with his to get more of a brownface sound out of it - as opposed to the current blackface sound.
Just 2nd hand word of mouth though.
If you're pretty confident in your soldering abilities, the kit might be just perfect for you. The instructions/diagrams/scematics are first class. The parts are first class. David is first class.
I was lucky enough to be the owner of the Accomplice prototype. A '70s SF Princeton Reverb that David rebuilt (it had been hacked/modded a whole lot!) into a BF Deluxe Reverb, basically, along many improvements like 3 knob reverb, Raw Switch, bigger transformers, midrange knob, etc. He (and I) liked it so much, he patterned the Accomplice line after it. It is a great amp, and it does a lot, tonally. I now have a 3x10 Old Flame which is absolutely killer!!! I'd love to get an Encore one of these days- tremolo is the only thing I miss about Allen amps. And the best part about any of David's amps, is David himself. Just a nice, helpful, knowledgeable guy who will help you find "your" tone. Give him a call. Hope this helps!
David Allen's Amps are about Perfect, for me.
I can't afford a breakdown (who can), when Gigging.
I have the 1x15 Old Flame and an Old Flame Head w/ a 4x10 open back cab.
I had another 1x15 cab, but it was stolen. The great thing about Allen Amps
are the exact 64 Fender clean Tones, but with the raw switch on say 2,
I can get a Tweed Mojo happening + have the awesome Reverb going on.
I don't need a power strip
to plug in the Reverb tank, I don't need the Cap job, on say a 64 Super Reverb.
I do miss the Trem, and if the recession breaks...
I would get a 3x10 Encore w/ da Trem! I have owned 15+ Super Reverbs, say 7,8 Twins, 3 Pro Reverbs, (I love Fender Amps, but since Allen came on the scene, that is all I want.
Kenny "Blue" Ray
above with Albert Collins & Kim Wilson, Antones, Austin Tx, 1985[/list][/code][/u][/quote][/i][/b]
Ben and Geo--just to help you guys a little with some info if I might-
The Encore does have a gorgeous Brown Face type Tremelo--very rich and very strong if you dial it in that way--as good as any I have ever heard on the Encore I have.
The kit instructions for the Accomplice and some of David's other offerings are really super and very graphic and easy to follow --just from what I understand and from some of the instructions I have seen.
Please note though guys I did NOT put my Encore together--it is NOT 0ffered as a kit as of yet--who knows that could change----but hey if someone was gonna put it together for me I would rather it be David Allen====
Thanks Spanky, ......"gorgeous Brown Face type Tremelo", Cool
I love that type.
Could be my kind of next amp.
I built an Allen Old Flame kit last fall. I opted for a separate head and 2x10 cab so I could try different speaker combos in the future. I can assure you that I have no buyer's remorse. The amp sounds great, and very quiet too. The kit was well thought out, and packaged extremely well. Before building the kit, I considered myself an average solderer, a somewhat technical person, and O.K. with my hands. Since the project I've become a better solderer, better with my hands(you'll feel like a surgeon wiring those tube sockets!), but I realized I still don't really understand how the heck an amp works. The beauty of his kits are that you don't need to! I do know that if any of the components ever fail, I can easily replace them myself, I just might need a nudge in the right direction as to what failed.
Take his advice and acquire a good soldering station. I used a Weller WES-50. Other tools that were very helpful were the flush cut pliers, nut drivers, and the lead benders. You may only need the de-solderer once or twice, but it's the way to go to remove a mistake or an over-abundance of solder. I actually thought the most critical, nerve-racking part of the project was the very first step; sticking the face plates to the chassis. If you miss, I don't think you can peel them back off. Anything else you screw up you can fix. I would like to build an Accomplice myself, but unfortunately my money tree shed all of it leaves last year. A lot of fun and highly recommended!
A question for you guys using the Allen Old Flame: How much clean headroom is available? I understand that this depends on tube bias, pickup output ect., but is like an old Super Reverb in that it starts to break up at around 4 or 5? Thanks.
Allen's are great!
I also have a Allen 2x10 kit I built a couple of years ago. It is a wonderful amp. I have a 64 and a 66 Vibrolux Reverb and the tone from the Allen hangs right there with them. I use the Allen for gigs when the master volume really makes a difference and I can get the signature fat BF tone without the high volume levels. A truly versatile amp. David is a super person and great to deal with. If you decide to go the Allen route, you won't be disappointed.
Allen Amps Headroom
The Headroom on my Old Flame Head w/4x10 Open back cab, ala a (Super Reverb Amp) is very close.
It stays fairly clean up to 6, I use a Good Mullard GZ34, Svetlana 6L6GCs,
and Good Preamp NOS tubes.
YMMV, but I doubt it. The Reverb is every bit as good as a Fender, IMHO>