Fender Princeton Amps - Reissue or Vintage

Discussion in 'Amp Central Station' started by Bled05, Jan 13, 2020.

  1. Bled05

    Bled05 TDPRI Member

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    Any guitarists use one of the newer 65 Fender Princeton reissue amps? They get good reviews. Also curious if anyone has ever put one beside an original vintage model and been able to see a $2-$3k difference in the sound and tone? You can find a decent used reissue for around $800 and a new one for $999, but the vintage models go from around $2.5k and up. If you’re lucky you can get one in “fair” condition without reverb for about $1.7k.


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  2. OlRedNeckHippy

    OlRedNeckHippy Friend of Leo's

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    Wow! My $400 investment in that 1966 Princeton Reverb about 10 years ago is proving to have been a good decision!
    Poor guy didn't know what he had, and neither did I! I offered him what I could afford and he took it.
    I've put about 750 into it giging it these past years. Them old tube amps need doctoring every 2 or 3 years if you're giging them, usually to the tune of about 250 bucks a shot, but I wouldn't trade it for a Coup-De-Ville!
     
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  3. ecoast

    ecoast Tele-Holic

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    Rivera era PRII ftw
     
  4. The-Kid

    The-Kid Tele-Meister

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    Bro I got a silver face vibro champ Ive been looking at at a good price all original....


    Has some home made "ported" cab work but looks good. Decent price I think 400$.
     
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  5. The-Kid

    The-Kid Tele-Meister

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    Edit.

    Taxes apply on all states
     
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2020
  6. charlie chitlin

    charlie chitlin Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    Pretty sure a nice SFPR is around a grand...1200?
    Blackface?
    Overpriced at 2000.
    If you prefer the blackface sound, I'm pretty sure the tweaks can be made to a Silverface for way under a grand ;)
     
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  7. fenderchamp

    fenderchamp Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

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    seeing sounds, hearing colors...groovy!!

    I have an original brown Princeton, and I don't hear thousands of dollars in difference between it and a prince RI either the blackface of the silverface, I haven't got to try out the new brown RI yet.

    But the nature of collectibles, is not really, 'does it sound better?'.

    I think things sound different, not necessarily better or worse. One things for sure, if you can't get good tones out of a Princeton RI, it's probably not the amps fault.

    If you want a kick ass collectible item that's worth a bunch of money, and sounds great, get an original.

    Get what you want to afford.

    Either way you go, you should be able to get some good sounds going seriously.


    I like original old fender amps and I like reissues too.
     
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  8. schmee

    schmee Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

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    THIS ^
     
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  9. schmee

    schmee Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

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    Vintage SF go as low as $1000 on Fleabay. Good way to go.
     
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  10. Charlodius

    Charlodius Tele-Meister

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    I love my PRRI and will never sell it.
     
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  11. Dukex

    Dukex Tele-Holic

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    There are high quality hand built clones out there. VSA Vintage 15 is one example @ $1,595.
     
  12. charlie chitlin

    charlie chitlin Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    They are a bit of a pain to service...cap can is almost $40...unless you go for individual caps.
    It's worth it.
    Mine is a great rehearsal or grab-and-go.
     
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  13. BobbyZ

    BobbyZ Doctor of Teleocity

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    Yeah you can get into the later silverface Princeton Reverbs cheaper. And if you have the cash ready and aren't in a hurry there's still deals out there. It's amazing how fast a price drops sometimes with a serious cash in hand offer. Doesn't always work, like when you get that guy that starts saying "they're selling for $1,000,000 on the internet".

    Nothing really wrong with the PRRI they've been around for years and have a good track record. That said being an old fuddy duddy I'd either track down a deal on a silver or blackface or just build one myself.
    I bought both my blackface Princeton Reverb and Deluxe Reverb for reissue money though. Deals popped up and I had the cash. $900 for the 64 PR, $1,200 for the 67 DR.
    Those two amps are the most and second most I've ever spent on amps.
     
  14. Ripradiant

    Ripradiant Tele-Afflicted

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    I agree with the post above and would add: I had a reissue and at a new price they are way overpriced for what you get. Though they get great reviews and might be trendy these are pretty shrill and not a great amp or a good value. You could by a read hand wired Fender from the 70s - like a twin, pro, deluxe for less and IMHO you would be way better off!
     
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  15. King Fan

    King Fan Friend of Leo's

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    All good ideas here; @BobbyZ summed up my basic take.

    Objective obvious differences? (Lets not go out into No Man's Land between PCB and hand-wired; too many shell craters and live rounds.)

    1. Speaker. One thing that's often disliked in the PRRI is the Italian reissue Jensen. OTOH, quite a few folks are perfectly fine with them.

    2. Cab. I'm not a smart guy who knows exactly when in the 70s the PR went MDF, but the pine cab before that is gonna sound different (better), and many folks feel the *age* of that old pine sweetens the tone too.

    Unlike the bigger BFs, the PR didn't get a heavy remodel with the move to silverface, so 'blackfacing' is not (mostly) a thing.

    But two factors we haven't hit too hard yet:

    1. A BF or SF in good shape is gonna go up in value, on average, and the RI is gonna go down. Not a huge amount, maybe, but still...

    2. OTOH, owning a vintage amp brings costs and responsibilities, like bringing it up to snuff when you buy it and keeping it there.
     
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  16. The-Kid

    The-Kid Tele-Meister

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    My vote goes to a brand new PRRI as you dont have to service it if there are issues and you have a 3 or 5 year warranty on these.


    Plus they are super servicable and can IMO last the times with service.


    You can get em anywhere to and try before you buy.

    Plus the tolerences on newer Reissues are higher and in a sense better quality and will hold up longer than vintage stuff at this point.

    Good luck and cheers
     
  17. Dacious

    Dacious Poster Extraordinaire

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    Buy a SF Princeton Reverb. Any year, apart from the glued in baffle they barely changed from BF. As someone said, fraction of the price of pre-67. Few changes, you have a BF circuit. Leave the pullboost unpulled.

    All they need is a good speaker (Emi Alessandro SC64 GA10 was made for them) and you have a BF sounding amp that will only climb in value, is tough and simple, serviceable infinitely and you can get every part for. Good 6V6s, decent preamp tubes, reverb and bias vary trem to die for.
     
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  18. Bled05

    Bled05 TDPRI Member

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    Wow! Thanks for all the great info! I actually had a 70s era silver face PR that I paid $150 for in 1989, of course I let it get away, along with some other prime vintage amps! Oh to be young and stupid again, haha. I’m actually looking at some on Reverb from around$1 to $1.2k, but leaning towards the RI just because I don’t want to spend that much. I have the 68 Custom Deluxe RI and I’m happy with it, but want a smaller rig for my aging back. Interesting comment about the older wood in the cabinets, guess that never occurred to me. Thanks again everyone!


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  19. Robert H.

    Robert H. Friend of Leo's

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    Ask an amp pro/tech - the Reissues are not the same as the old SF and BF amps. Different guts, different sound.
     
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  20. rolandson

    rolandson Tele-Holic Silver Supporter

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    I know, right!?
    I paid more than I thought I should for a 67 Deluxe Reverb in 1995, only because it was as close to mint as I had seen outside of a museum.

    I have to beat people away with a stick now.
     
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