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Help!! Blues Jr. vs Vox ac30 hw1x

Discussion in 'Amp Central Station' started by 800xm, Mar 19, 2020.

  1. 800xm

    800xm NEW MEMBER!

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    Hi guys! i know these thread is sort of repetitive. But i will expose my personal case.

    I have a telecaster baja 50's, a Gibson les paul and a fender american strat with custom fat 50's

    For pedals i use the line 6 helix. I use the helix live also, but i want the amp in the room thing for the house.

    Ok! so i've been a Marshall user for years. My latest amp was a jvm 210c. Great amp but way to loud and way to heavy.. 76 lbs. So i went ahead and sold it

    I had decided to go for a blues jr IV. Brand new. Witch only weights 31 lbs, less than half than the jvm. Has a great clean, a good overdrive and nice reverb. Went and tested the amp several times, takes the helix pedals great. And it is a decent price. I speacially like it with the tele


    Then a guy offers me a ac15 hw with the alnico blue. 400$ more. I thought no way, the amp weights 48.9 lbs. A bit more than the blues jr, but still nowhere near the jvm. And 15 watss also, but sounds fuller and louder.


    So i tried the amp, and DAAAAAMN the amps natural overdrive is great, the cleans are very harmonic to. Quite diferent from the blues jr, i wouldn't say better. But the od just kills the blues jr's.

    Tried it with od the pedals. And it's way more picky, it's not that it sounds bad. But you definetly have to tweack the amp for each pedal you activate. Also a detail! no reverb. So i would have to take at least a reverb if i want to gig with it.

    So is there any good advice you guys can offer me? Are the 400$ more for an used amp worth it, just for that od. Also more weight of course

    For a reference. I'm not i profesional musician, i do gig from time to time. But mostly with the helix.

    Styles i play: Hard rock, blues, some country, british pop, punk

    Main influences: Oasis, foo f, guns n roses, pink floyd
     
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  2. Chiogtr4x

    Chiogtr4x Poster Extraordinaire

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    A friend of mine ( used to be a player. now more of a collector) has a bunch of vintage ( or vintage style) Fender amps and a more modern Vox AC-15 with Reverb.

    (NOTE:I own a well maintained 1999 Blonde Blues Jr. ( now with a Neo speaker, and a few mods, done by great tech- it's my ' big gig' amp ( I play small venues) and I love it)

    Anyway when a few of us go to my collector buddy's home to jam ( he plays bass) I ( lately) plug a '61 SG RI into a '68 Super Reverb ( what a combo!) and a buddy of mine plays his Strat into the Vox AC-15, and it sounds fantastic and powerful.
    We both play/jam with OD pedals on and off. Mostly blues and Beatles.

    Now this VOX sounds great ( but has reverb) and 15 watts/class A is LOUD- but man, it is too heavy for me

    My personal winner is the Blues Jr., just on portability- it is probably not as good as an AC-15 , but between it's good clean tone, Reverb, and works great with my OD pedals. And cheaper. ( mine was only $270, bought used in 2000) I've used this amp 20 years.

    Just weighing things against each other- Reverb, weight, tone, price- I know some folks hate BJ's but I've learned to work mine well- NEVER had a ' not enough volume!' Issue

    * then again, the VOX may be better did music you play ( I do kind of think of a BJ as a Fender/VOX mutt- a Fender circuit using Vox power tubes! It has it's own sound)
    Need to play, try out both, more!
     
  3. GGardner

    GGardner Friend of Leo's

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    You could look at a non-handwired AC15. I see used ones floating around in the $350 range.
     
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  4. Seasicksailor

    Seasicksailor Friend of Leo's

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    That would be my suggestion too.
    I got the AC15-c1 some years back and it killed my amp GAS. Good reverb, excellent tremolo, lovely sound straight in, takes all my pedals beautifully.
    Yes, a bit on the heavy side, but I cannot see that being a problem unless you gig every night!
     
  5. Dukex

    Dukex Tele-Afflicted

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    If the AC15HW1x is not too loud or heavy, is in great/excellent shape, and is under $1k, it would be an easy choice for me. Lots of good reverb pedals out there.

    Good luck and have fun!
     
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  6. Randypttt

    Randypttt Friend of Leo's Gold Supporter

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    Short story shorter...forget the Jr.
    They don't get better with time.

    Don't own Vox anything but anything's better than B jr.
     
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  7. jguitarman

    jguitarman Tele-Afflicted

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    Never been a fan of the BJ but a lot of folks like 'em. I'd vote for the AC 15 HW. It sounds to me like $400 extra bucks is cheap for the Vox but I don't know what your total price is so I can't comment. You're young and I think at 49 lbs. it is still not too heavy. I'd be all over the Vox if the price is right and you can convince yourself the weight is OK. You can get a good reverb pedal.
     
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  8. Les H

    Les H Tele-Holic

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    Vox. But that's my ears talking.
     
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  9. tfarny

    tfarny Friend of Leo's

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    get the one you like more and can afford. What do I know about which one you'll prefer? Might as well ask me whether you should have chicken or fish for dinner.
     
  10. dreamingtele

    dreamingtele Friend of Leo's

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    Although Im not a fan of both, I do like the tones coming out from both.. but if I have to choose, Id keep the Bjr and not spend anymore..

    however, if I'm gonna get the AC15, I'll be sure to use it live, all the time..
     
  11. Stax1

    Stax1 Tele-Meister

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    Get both! :)
    I own both a Blues Jr and a Vox AC30CC1. I dig them both for different reasons..
    The Blues Jr gets all the gig time though as its more portable and sits better in the band mix imo..

    I'm not a big lead player though, just blues licks and rhythm, so if you're into fancy leads then the Vox may be better in your band mix.. I do love how chimey the Vox is though, the Blues Jr just doesn't do that sorta thing..
     
  12. El Marin

    El Marin Tele-Afflicted

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    Between BJ and AC15 I would choose AC15 any day of the week

    Between AC15 and AC30 the same, AC15 wins

    BUT... My choice for a light portable amp in that money gap maybe would be Fender Pro Junior or Marshall Origin 20c... used, of course
     
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  13. mugen74

    mugen74 Tele-Holic

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    I’ve personally never had pedals get along with a Vox amp. And the AC15 is a heavy amp. Way heavier than it needs to be for a 15 watt amp. Yeah, it sounds good, but if that’s the sound you want, the AC10 with a speaker upgrade weighs way less. I’d go Blues Jr in this case, but then, I’m also planning to get one soon myself.

    jh
     
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  14. LowCaster

    LowCaster Tele-Afflicted

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    Tone is in the fingers, but ultimately the sound is produced by the amp. Get the amp with the best sound. If you can afford it, the price is irrelevant.

    (Or get both, same reasons...)
     
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  15. TokyoPortrait

    TokyoPortrait Friend of Leo's

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    Hi.

    I don’t know what the difference in sound between the regular types of AC15 and the hand wired ones is like, having never played an AC15HW, but the difference between the regular AC4s and my hand wired one is stunning. Mind you, my cabinet and speaker are a lot different from the regular AC4 options, and I’m not so sure that’s the case with the regular and hand wired AC15s. But anyway, I wouldn’t necessarily count on a regular one sounding the same as the hand wired one you’ve tried, if you decided to go that route. Just a thought.

    Also, a lot of people seem to have trouble pairing dirt pedals with AC amps, esp. the top boost circuit. But, others don’t. So, it’s just a matter of research and choosing with some thought and care. I wouldn’t let that notion put you off. Besides, as you’ve noted, AC amps sound glorious anyway.

    As for reverb, as others have pointed out, plenty of good reverb pedals out there.

    So, I guess my vote is clear :)

    Pax/
    Dean
     
  16. Bearzooka

    Bearzooka TDPRI Member

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    I have a tweed blues jr and a vox ac15c1. I wish I bought the vox right from the start, the amp's distortion is amazing. The blues jr is currently up for sale.
     
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  17. stnmtthw

    stnmtthw Friend of Leo's

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    I have an AC15 C1. Pedals in the normal channel, straight in to the Top Boost channel. Trust me.

    The Top Boost circuit has a couple of resistors that are designed to add some high end sparkle at low volume, but they also make most OD pedals pretty finicky. There is a mod you can do to remove these if you'd like, and it really does help if you have, say, an AC10 or an AC4 that only has the top boost circuit and you're addicted to your OD pedal.
     
  18. stnmtthw

    stnmtthw Friend of Leo's

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    I did the exact same thing. The Blues Jr is a great amp- nothing wrong with it- but the Vox just blows it away.
     
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  19. Hatfield92

    Hatfield92 Tele-Holic

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    I once tried a non-hw ac15 head to head against the 68 Princeton Reverb custom. I definitely preferred the PR. But against a BJ, I’d probably lean towards the Vox.
     
  20. Chiogtr4x

    Chiogtr4x Poster Extraordinaire

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    20 years of non-stop ( well, until now!!) local gigging. Not perfect, but a great sounding ( and well-tech- maintained) blonde Blues Jr:

    20200104_151942.jpg
     
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