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Fender 68 Vibro Champ Reverb

Discussion in 'Amp Central Station' started by ratrob, Mar 9, 2021.

  1. ratrob

    ratrob TDPRI Member

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    Hello all,

    I have wanted a classic Fender amp for years and have been looking for a Princeton Reverb for a while. During virtual NAMM this year Fender stated they were releasing a 5 watt 68 Vibro Champ with reverb. This sounds perfect for me since I am a bedroom player now and do not play out. I'm thinking this will be a like a Princetons little brother. Does anybody have both a Princeton and Vibro Champ and can compare the two?

    The amp is going to sell for $750, is this price ridiculous? I have seen vintage Vibro Champs on Reverb for similar price which makes me wonder if I should just look for a real vintage amp. The new release does have reverb and a 10 inch speaker which I think would round out the sound better.

    Since the statement, I haven't heard one peep about this new amp. Not one video or any new information. I'm dying to see some youtube videos to see how it sounds. I wonder why it's taking so long for Fender to release any info about this?

    https://shop.fender.com/en-US/guita.../68-custom-vibro-champ-reverb/2279000000.html
     
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  2. Bob M

    Bob M Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    I don’t know about the Vibro Champ but I just bought a ‘68 PRRI and it is an awesome living room amp. I don’t know if I can live with a 5 watter personally.
     
  3. Sotakoira Musti

    Sotakoira Musti Tele-Afflicted

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    I’ve also had my eye on that. One webshop had a delivery date from 05/2021 onwards. But that’s just some date set, when it’s coming, who knows?

    Seems like perfect bedroom amp!
     
  4. BCblues55

    BCblues55 Tele-Meister Gold Supporter

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    I bought one from Sweetwater, knowing it would not be released until this Spring or Summer. I paid for it by selling my ‘73 Vibro Champ, which I liked but didn’t play much. The new model’s 10” speaker and onboard reverb were big selling points for me. Can’t wait ‘til it gets here!
     
  5. Phrygian77

    Phrygian77 Friend of Leo's Gold Supporter

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    I've built and worked on a few Vibro Champs and Princeton Reverbs. If you're looking to get any break up, the Princeton Reverb will be really loud with most speakers. The Vibro Champ is also fairly loud. The Vibro Champ has a bit more midrange and sounds better pushed. A Princeton Reverb has a better clean tone.
     
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  6. ratrob

    ratrob TDPRI Member

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    You'll have to post a review here when you get it. I'm glad to see others are looking at this amp too.

    I have almost pulled the trigger on a Champ XD so many times and that amp sounds great. But, I'm just looking for that classic Fender clean tone with no gimmicks. I don't want amp models and built in effects, my rig is pretty simple and I get all the sounds I need from my tube amps and a few pedals.

    Thanks all,
     
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  7. 985plowboy

    985plowboy Friend of Leo's

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    I have a mid 70’s SFVC.
    I’ve often wished it had reverb.
    And more power.
    And a 12”speaker.
    You know.....
    Like a Princeton.

    I would get a Princeton and an overdrive pedal.
    You can make a high powered amp dirty at lower volumes but, you can’t make a low power amp clean at higher volume.
     
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  8. King Fan

    King Fan Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

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    Yes, folks who play quiet can get cleans out of a VC, and they’re somewhat blackface cleans at least compared to say tweed. In fact it is pretty popular with the 'small but BF but single-ended, dirt-available' crowd, and I know players who like that as much as they like their PR.

    OTOH a single-ended, cathode-biased 10” in a small cab is never gonna actually be a PR, leave aside real reverb and the trem details. And then vintage/real vs. modern involves a whole bunch of other trade-offs in both directions, like vintage has ease of repair and modern has ease of warranty. :):):)

    Nothing against the new VC. I thought there were some positive reviews shared here recently? If you want what it has, go for it. I just see some “settled for Mary Ann but really wanted Ginger” deals end with dissatisfaction. :D
     
  9. Telefsantasia1

    Telefsantasia1 Tele-Meister

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    Is it a spring reverb or solid state? thanks!
     
  10. caspersvapors

    caspersvapors Tele-Meister

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    why are you thinking the Vibro Champ will be better than the Princeton for your situation? They both have a 10" speaker. The wattage here will not really make a difference in the volume.

    If I were you Id get a used 65 RI Princeton
     
  11. teleman1

    teleman1 Friend of Leo's

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    That amp ended being a Vibro anything when it switched to a 10 inch speaker & reverb. It deserved another name. Say like the Mini Prince or Vibro Prince.
     
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  12. The Ballzz

    The Ballzz Tele-Afflicted

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    The downside will likely be that horrid little "Ten-30" Celestion. I love many Celestion speakers, but that one certainly is NOT one of them! I think Fender has done themselves a huge disservice with this speaker choice. The amp may actually sound great, just not likely with that speaker! But who knows? It may be a match made in heaven?

    Also note that it appears to be solid state rectumfried! While that may provide a tiny bit more "headroom" it may well kill some of the magic that IS the Champ!

    Just My $.02,
    Gene
     
    Last edited: Mar 10, 2021
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  13. takauya

    takauya Tele-Meister

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    Wow, they've added a digital reverb on the VC? :lol::lol::lol:

    Oh, and I disagree with the idea a 10" sounds better in a VC, as well as a 12" sounds better in a PR. NO.
     
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  14. wblynch

    wblynch Tele-Meister

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    Yes, sadly
     
  15. Wildeman

    Wildeman Tele-Meister

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    You did what?:eek:
    :D i kid, hope it works out for you.
     
  16. King Fan

    King Fan Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

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    Ah, it has a Celestion Ten 30? The “30” indicates about what that speaker costs *retail.* OK, $35 last I checked. :D
     
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  17. railtycoon

    railtycoon NEW MEMBER!

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    I have a couple points that might be helpful. First, the Champ is a single end amplifier. What that means is it's a single output tube operating on it's own.The Princeton, Deluxe Reverb, etc... have two output tubes. With two output tubes you have one tube pushing current while the other is pulling current at the same time and vice versa. To accomplish this the signal must be inverted for one of tubes. End result is that signal errors creep in and the amp uses "negative feedback" to clean up the errors and distortion involved. This smooths out the signal and kind of mellows out the amp. A single end amp like the Champ doesn't work this way. It doesn't use very much negative feedback and some amps, none at all. The end result is that the amp has a wilder response. More touch sensitivity, more dynamics. It sounds more brash. I have a couple Champs. An original '70s Champ, a '90s Champ 12 with a modded preamp to be a better amp. I have the Princeton Reverb reissue with a Cannabis Rex and a Humboldt Edition Blues Junior IV with the Hotrod Hempster speaker. The Princeton Reverb is my favorite amp, nothing else is quite as perfect for me. Second, you really can't compare the Champ to the Princeton, Blues Jr, Deluxe Reverb, etc... they aren't in the same wheelhouse. Like the Champ or dislike it for what it is, not what it isn't compared to a completely different amp design. Me, I'm interested in this amp for being an improved Vibro Champ. If I had to choose just one amp, I highly recommend the Princeton Reverb reissue special edition tweed with Cannabis Rex speaker for another $250. It's just about the perfect amp in it's class.
     
  18. ricks57custom

    ricks57custom TDPRI Member

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    New 68 Custom Vibro Champ Reverb video out tomorrow!
     
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  19. wblynch

    wblynch Tele-Meister

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    Do you have a link for us?
     
  20. Boreas

    Boreas Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    Leaving a Princeton out of the discussion (I have both), I have a mint 69 drip-edge VC. I love every aspect of it - except its lack of reverb. I don't care for reverb pedals (but many are very nice) as I prefer spring reverb, so I bought a SS 69 FR-1000 reverb unit for ~$300. Sounds great!! Vintage VCs are expensive, but as you said, they aren't that much more expensive than this new one. One thing to consider, 5 years from now, the new one will be worth half what you paid for it - assuming it is still working OK. The vintage VC will likely be worth more than you paid for it. Filter caps do need to be changed every 20 years or so for the safety of the amplifier, but otherwise, vintage VCs are pretty bombproof and easily maintained.
     
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