DRRI dead, do I put it in trash and buy a Tone Master?

Discussion in 'Amp Central Station' started by BorderRadio, Sep 11, 2020.

  1. Bob M

    Bob M Tele-Afflicted Ad Free Member

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    Well I hope you’re kidding. A DRRI is a thousand dollars. And very repairable. I bought one last November and compared it to a DR Tonemaster. For my money no contest. The DRRI is repairable. From what I see the Tonemaster not so much.
     
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  2. EspyHop

    EspyHop Tele-Holic

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    You could always replace the chassis with a PTP chassis (i.e. from Mojotone).
     
  3. That Cal Webway

    That Cal Webway Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

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    Replace at the 1979 Crate
     
  4. CalebAaron666

    CalebAaron666 Tele-Holic

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    My Tone Master DR hasn’t yet replaced my CDRR, but now that I updated the firmware on the TM with the “tone cap snip” mod, it’s a serious contender!
    Made a HUGE difference.
    Now it’s just as friendly with gain pedals and the Mystery Brain preamp as my tube deluxe.
     
  5. gusfinley

    gusfinley Tele-Afflicted

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    Ironcially, if you buy a Tone Master and it stops working, then it would likely end up in the trash. Fender won't be stocking DSP chips for repairs and DSP chips often go out of production. They are also very difficult to replace.

    Your DRRI has easily replaceable components and could ever be converted to handwired for even more easily replaceable components.

    I believe its always good to have a backup, thought, whether the backup is the DRRI or the tonemaster.

    Definitely get the DRRI repaired! Don't toss it in the trash!
     
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  6. BorderRadio

    BorderRadio Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    Ok the rectifier tube is hot and glowing, the nearby power tube is warm (proximity?), and the rest are cold. I can’t see the reverb and preamp tubes but they are cold.
     
  7. jondanger

    jondanger Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

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    The rectifier uses the 5v secondary for the heater. All the other tubes use the 6v secondary for the heaters. The pilot light also uses the 6v secondary. I’d say you’re about one step away from tracking this down.
     
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  8. BorderRadio

    BorderRadio Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    Ah yeah, thanks JD. Opening up the chassis now.
     
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  9. BorderRadio

    BorderRadio Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    Well, already other issues. The C32 filter cap is trashed. C34 is probably next or already done.

    The second fuse, XF2, is blown, with some heat damage on the board. I couldn’t find this on the ‘65 DRRI schematic, but I did find it on the ‘68 CDR schematic. I checked it, it’s the same and it’s in the heater circuit.

    What could of blown it? Do I need to check CP11 & CP12? The damaged side of the fuse bracket is loose, and I don’t have conductivity when it sits a certain way, only when I push it to the side. So looks like I need to repair that trace. DOH.

    I’m pretty sure that cap issue explains the slight crackling before warm up, maybe not.

    Now I’m thinking of hand-wiring.....like I need another project. Any one wanna trade for a 68 or Tone Master? :/
     
  10. corliss1

    corliss1 Friend of Leo's Platinum Supporter

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    I still doubt it's an expensive fix. Replace the cap, and see if that was the issue in itself or if there are other problems. Sounds like tech time though.
     
  11. jondanger

    jondanger Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

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    You’re probably not at the “gutting it and rewiring on an eyelet board” stage yet. I’m a total novice at this. A couple years ago my buddy was ready to throw in the towel on his DRRI, and I opened it up, replaced everything that looked crispy, and it has been going strong ever since. Even if you have to repair a trace, that’s doable. You can run a wire to where the trace used to go, there are options.

    Take some photos while you’re in there. That will help folks on here who can help you troubleshoot.

    As far as what could have blown it, could have been a failing cap, short in one of the tubes, any of many things.
     
  12. BorderRadio

    BorderRadio Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    Heh, I know but it’s tempting. I can build pedals, it’s all the same right?

    This all looks doable though, I can do the trace, caps no problem. Thing is I can’t help replacing other things while I’m at it..

    65B2EB44-5268-4A77-A5F7-A6524A15FA07.jpeg 156E0CF9-5E98-4385-8C1F-82C24C78CE30.jpeg A667EE22-4A74-425C-BA58-2C0FE2C97C41.jpeg
     
  13. saleake

    saleake TDPRI Member

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    The Tone Master Deluxe is the best piece of equipment I’ve bought in years. I’m going to get a blond one too!
     
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2020
  14. Fireball519

    Fireball519 Tele-Meister

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    Not trying to be funny. Would you sell the DRRI? I've kind of always wanted one
     
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  15. 11 Gauge

    11 Gauge Doctor of Teleocity

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    Other than having to be careful with high voltage in tube amps, I actually typically find it to be easier to work on tube amps than many pedals. Things tend to not be as cramped or with as tight of a PCB layout, and you're only mostly dealing with caps and resistors.

    I'm going to be the odd man out and not recommend gutting a DRRI to replace it with a turretboard. I did one about 20 years ago, and it was a pain. I had to ream the chassis to get the non-PCB pots to fit. At least with the older DRRIs, the send & return for the reverb tank (IIRC) are located on the bottom of the chassis, and are different from the older non-RI style (I had to drill and grind the chassis to relocate them to the non-RI location, on the backside). Also, the filter caps in the DRRI are a little different, IIRC.

    ...I mean, none of the above alterations require you to be a rocket scientist, but require some elbow grease, creativity, trial and error, and perseverance, and you might find yourself cursing a bit in the process. Personally, I'd just repair (or even alter as needed) the existing PCB unless it was just extremely buggered up.
     
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  16. tombm3

    tombm3 Tele-Holic

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    Hopefully you can get things back up and running soon.
     
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2020
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  17. claptonrules

    claptonrules TDPRI Member

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    I bought the ToneMaster Deluxe (not twin) about 3 weeks and man, it's all you want. I watched Andertons, Rhett and Bolinger review it with huge thumbs up which was good enough for me. I'm an intermediate player, gig out at clubs about 6 times per year and it will handle a small club just fine. Attenuation option is incredible plus the IR's and built in reverb and trem. Takes my pedals perfectly. My 22 watt tube works fine, just fickle and tubes make be nervous cuz they burn out and break. This ToneMaster seems indestructible and with the weight at 23 lbs, I can literally lift it with a finger. New ones have the 12 inch Celestion and I got the brand new Blonde vs black. Looks like an old vintage tube amp and tone is incredible. Good luck.
     
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  18. fasteddie42

    fasteddie42 Tele-Afflicted

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    um..

    absolute worst case scenario you have basically all the fixings for your own handwired deluxe reverb?

    send the chassis out and pay the money or buy a kit and make some fun out of it.

    presuming you bought it in 2013 that like seven years of good music at around $143 a year.
     
  19. mmannaxx

    mmannaxx Tele-Meister

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    Guess I would get an old (vintage) silverface Princeton Reverb. Weighs about 32 lbs. Easier to fix stuff and will maybe hold its value. Everything is guesswork right now during the pandemic. Who knows where value of music stuff is going to wind up.
    Sell the Drri to someone who wants to fix it. Or fix and sell it.
     
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  20. BorderRadio

    BorderRadio Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    Things being what they are, I'm going to fix it myself. That means a recap and trace repair--whatever else is in the heater circuit. If problems persist though, then it's out of my league and I'll have to think about going to the guy who worked on it under warranty (trem noise fix). I guess to answer that more directly, I would sell it, only for the right price :)
     
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