How does a 70s SF Vibrolux Reverb compare to a new PRRI ?

Discussion in 'Glowing Bottle Tube Amp Forum' started by OzShadow, Jul 8, 2019.

  1. OzShadow

    OzShadow Tele-Meister Silver Supporter

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    I wasn't looking for this amp. Never considered it. A 70s SF Vibrolux Reverb is for sale locally at a price comparable to a new PRRI, which is what I was set on buying.

    For home use only, how does the SF Vibrolux compare to the current PRRI ?
     
  2. DavidP

    DavidP Friend of Leo's

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    A SFVR is a quantum leap above a PRRI wrt sound/volume, a great classic amp with the 2-10s, much more headroom and range. But, if its home use only you better get an attenuator for the SFVR.
     
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  3. RadioFM74

    RadioFM74 Tele-Afflicted

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    I was about to write just this. Vibroluxes are wonderful.
     
  4. Hatfield92

    Hatfield92 Tele-Meister

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    Not trying to kick a hornets nest with the following comment, but here goes.

    I think all SF/BF amps sound generally the same tonally. I’m talking ballpark here. Sure, a twin is going to give you things a Princeton can’t.

    So, to me, it all comes down to volume. And if you’re looking for breakup, the smaller the better.

    I owned a late 70s VR for a couple of years. I wanted to love it, but the person who I entrusted to service it when I bought it didn’t know what he was doing. So the entire time I owned it, it was cold and harsh sounding. And way too loud for small gigs.

    I wouldn’t recommend a VR for a home amp. Or anything above a deluxe.
     
  5. D'tar

    D'tar Friend of Leo's

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    The Vibrolux, to me, sounds fantastic at any volume! Grab it up if its in good shape and decent price. If you don't like it, sell it. You can get a PRRI any day of the week!
     
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  6. AlbertaGriff

    AlbertaGriff Tele-Afflicted

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    What year specifically? Either way I'd probably go with the SFVR, but generally earlier is better.
     
  7. Mike Simpson

    Mike Simpson Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    I will always choose an original silverface or blackface over any PCB reissue.
    That said the VR and PRRI are two very different amps... 35 watts 2 6L6 2x10 vs 12 watts 2 6V6 1x10 plus the size and weight.
    Out of the two my choice would be to look for an original silverface Princeton Reverb. I will never buy a RI PCB amp.
     
  8. kelnet

    kelnet Telefied Ad Free Member

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    As you said, though, the sound you got was not the fault of the amp. The sound was bad because of the guy who was servicing it.
     
  9. kelnet

    kelnet Telefied Ad Free Member

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    I have a PRRI, and I love it. For home use, it's still a bit too loud. I live in a townhouse, though, so your situation might be fine. I never turn mine above two.
     
  10. lil scotty

    lil scotty Tele-Meister

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    I see what you did there. You're making him think that an original silverface Princeton Reverb was one of the 2 he's considering. You guys are all the same. Wait...us guys are all the same because I agree with you. VR if you're "stuck" with his choice, strictly.
     
  11. schmee

    schmee Poster Extraordinaire

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    As mentioned, Vibrolux: a great amp. Different sound than a PR though. It will be sparkly and loud. For home use I suspect the PR will be more the thing. But the Vlux may be a bargain buy...
     
  12. Slim Chance

    Slim Chance Tele-Holic

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    I’ve said this before, but it’s worth repeating. My 68 Vibro Champ
    Drip Edge with a Weber Alnico sounds just great. I set the volume between 3 and 6. Every once in a while I bring out my 64 Virbrolux Reverb and set it to the same volume level as I play the Champ. Maybe volume at 2-2 1/2. It makes the Champ seem thin and shallow.

    Then I put the VR back in the closet and the Champ sound good again. Even played at lower volumes the VR sounds great. At 4-5 it’s glorious.

    I can’t tell you which is the most appropriate amp for you, but you owe it to yourself to try the Vibrolux.
     
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  13. Dacious

    Dacious Poster Extraordinaire

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    Had both. The VR is a lovely amp and my favourite 'big' Fender rev/trem amp. 210s - awesome punch.

    But it's too big even for a lot of gigs. The PR is verging on too big for home but it's a better fit.

    Sameish reverb because both short tank - PR trem is the most dreamy.

    I too would look for a SF PR. With an efficient speaker it's easily giggable as long as you're not looking for high gain. A PRRI is a good alternative but subject to depreciation new. Good buying s/h.

    VR suffered little of the depredations suffered by the bigger 40-45 Watters that went to 70 watts. - leave pullboost unpulled it's a few small minor changes off AB763 and having done them, negligible.

    Ditto the Princeton reverb and Deluxe Reverbs. Late SF very similar to BF circuits and cheap comparative prices.
     
  14. bluebirdrad

    bluebirdrad Tele-Meister

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    I love my vintage Vibro Champ for home and quiet rehearsals. My vintage Princeton Reverb is also great for home and small gigs without a drummer. I love my vintage Deluxe for gigs -- too loud for home without the attenuator. But if I had to choose one, I would keep the Deluxe no question. If this amp is late 60's or early 70's you should consider it. A SF PR may suit you better but I don't think they are cheap these days -- you should check it out for comparison. For strictly home use a VibroChamp with a reverb pedal is awesome and may be cheaper than the PRRI.
     
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2019
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  15. max_twang

    max_twang Tele-Afflicted

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    You can always pick up a PRRI. A Vibrolux Reverb doesn't come along all that often. If it's a bargain, buy it and try it. If it's not what you want, you'll be able to pass it along...
     
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  16. Uncle Daddy

    Uncle Daddy Tele-Holic

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    Don't forget to factor in a service and tube swap on the Vibrolux if it's not been carried out recently. Old amps have the potential to be a money pit.
     
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  17. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    SFVR

    It's sort of the Princeton reverb of the 6L6 Fender amps.
     
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  18. strat a various

    strat a various Friend of Leo's

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    This. You get a PRRI for a grand, you get a warranty and you can probably return it for 45 days if you change your mind.
    You get a Vibrolux for a grand, add $150 or $200 for a cap job. Maybe the tech finds some other things wrong with it. Maybe it needs some power tubes ... 6L6 might run $50 to $100 a piece ... you might need two of them. The speakers may sound good trying it out and then start buzzing or crying at higher volumes. If you like old vintage amps, you have to commit to restore them and maintain them. Can't predict where that will go. Could be expensive.
     
  19. brookdalebill

    brookdalebill Tele Axpert Ad Free Member

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    I’d go with the Vibrolux.
    It’s just “more”.
     
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  20. Uncle Daddy

    Uncle Daddy Tele-Holic

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    For "home use" the VR will need ear defenders unless you intend to use it as a pedal platform. Even the PR can scramble your eggs when it gets cooking. My 18w PR clone is a bit much really. Beautiful cleans, but the edge of breakup volume is more than enough to bother the neighbours.
     
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