Need help from 80s Super Champ owners

Shaolin Wolf

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Mar 6, 2006
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Hi All - I recently got an 80s Super Champ from a friend who's moving. He's primarily a drummer, and he used this amp occasionally when he played guitar, but it's been sitting in a closet for years. He's not an "amp guy" - just turned it on on played, no technical knowledge.

I love this amp, it sounds great clean and dirty, but there's one thing I'm not sure about - I'll set it clean with reverb at 3-4, a nice roomy reverb. If I then pull the Volume/lead Channel knob out, I get a really nice dirt sound, but *no reverb*. I actually like that dry dirty sound, but I got to wondering if the reverb setting should carry over when switched to the dirt side of the amp.

Does the reverb only work in the clean channel by design or should I take a trip to my amp repair person to take a look? I looked on the inter webs and can't find any talk about this. The Super Champ owners manual is pretty minimal, almost useless. Oh, and I don't have the foot switch, in case that matters. Thanks is advance to anyone who can help.
 

Bendyha

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The almost total lack of reverb when the drive channel is being used is down to the way the amp is designed. There is a way to get some reverb, sort of next to - or along with the drive, not on the drive, but it involves a fair bit of modification. The easy way is to use a reverb pedal in front of the amp.
 
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Shaolin Wolf

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The almost total lack of reverb when the drive channel is being used is down to the way the amp is designed. There is a way to get some reverb, sort of next to - or along with the drive, not on the drive, but it involves a fair bit of modification. The easy way is to use a reverb pedal in front of the amp.
Thank you for your response, Bendyha, you saved me a trip to the amp repair shop and a few $$ 👍👍
 
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chris m.

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Yes, the reverb is supposed to disappear when you switch to lead channel, because the tube used for reverb is hijacked to become another gain stage.

Best tones are on the clean channel, master volume at 5 or higher, volume around 8-10. No midboost for blackface tone, pull midboost for more tweed-ish/ hard rock tone. The lead channel has too much gain imo unless you’re into metal…
 

Shaolin Wolf

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Yes, the reverb is supposed to disappear when you switch to lead channel, because the tube used for reverb is hijacked to become another gain stage.

Best tones are on the clean channel, master volume at 5 or higher, volume around 8-10. No midboost for blackface tone, pull midboost for more tweed-ish/ hard rock tone. The lead channel has too much gain imo unless you’re into metal…
chris m. - thanks for the breakdown in simple language on why the reverb goes away. I probably wasn't searching the string of words that was going to get me the answer when I was searching for answers in Google, but then I thought "the TDPRI folks would know," and within a few hours I got really useful responses. Gotta love this place!
 

Bendyha

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Try changing the reverb driver tube V3, from the 12AT7, to a lower gain 12AU7, this will make your drive channel more usable. And make sure that V4, the 7025 (12AX7) which half of acts as the reverb recovery tube, is a strong tube. I actually find that I have way too much reverb on my amp as a result (I have two SC amps), and have to keep it turned low when in use, but it also means that when the drive is on, there are reserves of reverb to match up too, and mix with it.
Yes, the reverb is supposed to disappear when you switch to lead channel, because the tube used for reverb is hijacked to become another gain stage.
This isn't right, nowhere is a "supposed to" stipulated, and the tube isn't hijacked, there is no reduction of signal being driven into the reverb tank when the parallel drive chain is switched into the circuit, it is only being swamped out at its output. Increasing the loss in the gain channel drive lets the reverb room to come through. Also, the increased resistance and separation in the circuit which is added when one does the "footswitch tonesuck" eliminating modification that I often advocate, will help alleviate the discrepancy.
 

Dacious

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I've never had an amp with lots of gain on board that reverb sounded good on and the SC is no exception. A good 12AU7 means the drive isn't so berserk but there's still plenty but the reverb is nice and usable. Still sounds lush at 4-6 on the dial.

I can recommend @Bendyha 's mod to the mixing resistor, which doesn't affect volume with no pedal plugged in but stops the thin sound/volume drop with a pedal plugged in.

Pulling the mid boost with single coils makes the tone nice and fat - Paul Rivera said in an interview some touring pros had their amps modded to make the mid boost footswitchable.

I use mine with an Eminence GA10 SC64 and can't run it past 5 on the master when gigging or I get lots of complaints on volume. Everyone says it sounds great clean or with pedals.
 




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