Newish 5G9 Tremolux demo -- comments, impressions?

King Fan

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As a 5g9 fanboy, I'm always struck by how few actual demos there are on youtube. Here's one from October I hadn't seen before, a Tele through a clone from a shop down in Muscle Shoals (no affiliation).

The famous trem seems to be there. :) Beyond that, what do we think?

 

AlbertaGriff

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Sounds pretty good. In the 2nd half of the video, I'm thinking his guitar volume must be pretty low? I'd think a Tremolux at 8.5/12 on the dial would be breaking up more. I know my 5E9-A is pretty dirty sounding by 5/12.
 

King Fan

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Sounds pretty good. In the 2nd half of the video, I'm thinking his guitar volume must be pretty low? I'd think a Tremolux at 8.5/12 on the dial would be breaking up more. I know my 5E9-A is pretty dirty sounding by 5/12.

Exactly, I kept waiting for some OD. The few other demos I've heard get some real tweed drive going; not 5e3, but very real.

That tapping part made me want to practice more.

Me too; but if I practiced more I'd have to spend less time thinking about amps... :)
 

High Head Brad

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Sounds very nice but as you and @AlbertaGriff pointed out, it seems very clean for an amp on 8.5. Now I’ve never tried a 5E9 to know whether that is typical or not but every other vintage and cloned tweed amp I have tried would be pretty dirty at that point. The trem sounds very nice

I wonder where he got the chassis from? When I was first in contact with Wayne from Headstrong about my recent amp build, I actually enquired about a Tremolux but he said the chassis would have to be custom built as no one supplied them off the shelf. Obviously that would’ve drove the price up so I went with a 5F4 instead
 

Wally

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If that is all that amp will do at 8.5 of the volume, then ime he has a weak guitar or he is not utilizing full output of the pickups. It sounds good, but I would expect more from it. Fwiw, I would prefer that the amp be set hot and left there...with the only adjustments being the trem switching plus the speed and intensity control manipulation for that trem. I like to hear what variations in the input signal will do in a tweed that is set for overdrive wipe the guitar output is maxed.
that cathode biased circuit should be giving some hot guitar sounds with a guitar set to max output, 8mho. Everything is very tame.
 

King Fan

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that cathode biased circuit should be giving some hot guitar sounds with a guitar set to max output, 8mho. Everything is very tame.

I totally agree about the tame. I'm guessing either his pickups or his guitar volume or both were set for a gig at the senior center. But as someone who thinks about this amp wa-a-a-ay too much, I will humbly note the 5G9 took the Tremolux to fixed bias.

As I say, good demos of these are rare. Some supposed "5e9a" demos may actually be 5G9s, since Leo never got around to printing up a 5G9 tube chart. Given this one is supposed to be a 1960, I suspect it's a real 5G9, and although it's kinda DIY-cellphone audio, the amp isn't tame.



Even less tame but also even less audio-stellar is this demo of what is certifiably a 5G9...

 

Wally

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My bad....for,some reason I had 5E9 on my mind. Apologies....it has been a weird day. In that case, then overdrive should have been edgier...crisper...more like a low output Marshall....since that is how people ‘hear’ that sound. But...there should be some kind of heat going on.
 

Hatfield92

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I’ve got a 6G2 custom build from that seller. I’m no techie, but I think they’re biased a little on the low (high?) side. Whichever way keeps ‘em from breaking up too early. However, he’ll build them pretty much any way you want them, so I imagine you can tell him how you want them biased too.

That said, another member here who seems to know quite a bit more about the inner workings of amps explained to me that it’s probably biased that way to maximize the bias vary trem.
 

King Fan

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All good info. Perversely, the scarcity of good demos makes me more interested in this amp. The best reports I've read on this confirms what @Wally says -- the fixed bias and LTP are said (by some) to make this sort of a 'baby Bassman.'

Hmm, I wonder what the lowest-production tweed was (well, besides the almost-mythic 6G10, about which actual credible reports are rarer than certifiable 5G9 demos). :)
 

ocduff

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The 5G9 Tremolux is a low gain affair. With an audio taper pot there’s not much volume to be had until higher on the dial. However, the volumes are wired like a 5e3 deluxe so really the pot taper will not affect things much.

The ‘60 Tremolux above has 5881 Tung Sols in it, not 6V6.

I think to make a proper clone of a 5G9, you need exact specs of primary and secondary impedences of the OT and PT specs as well to make a good clone.

I have built a clone sans tremolo and it was super low gain. By adding 5881 it came to life - and in fact a lot of used 5G9 you see for sale have 6L6 type tubes in them. Others with originals must feel the same and yet “gain” is subjective, however, I am one who thinks a 5F6-A Bassman has too much gain.

The 6G3 Deluxe is, circuit wise, a 5G9 that is perfected. However, I would not argue that the 6G3 sounds better than a 5E3, as one example, despite being a circuit that makes perfect sense.

In fact, I love tremolo but for bias vary tremolo to function deeply, often you are limited in how high you can bias the amp - sometimes the amp sounds thin and cold to my ears, for the tremolo to function. The 5G9 would be no exception to this - which would further exacerbate the low output heard here.

However, I have listened with a smile on my face to the 5E9 Tremolux will Bates is playing there - angelic indeed!
 

King Fan

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The 5G9 Tremolux is a low gain affair. With an audio taper pot there’s not much volume to be had until higher on the dial. However, the volumes are wired like a 5e3 deluxe so really the pot taper will not affect things much.

You've summarized the gain situation and the apparent contradiction here -- this is a 5e3 volume stack but doesn't seem to share the gain (or OD) behavior of the 5e3.

Of course fixed bias, LTP, etc. bring a ton to the mix. And to the extent you want/need to bias low for trem, and to the extent you can match the schematic HT voltages and B+, you further 'define' gain / overhead / etc.

I didn't realize people had biggified the tubes in some of these demos -- but that just increases the info I find missing; actual 'demonstrations' that show the amp at low and high volumes, maybe with different pickups. Let's agree that mic'ing, playing, and YouTube audio all decrease tonal accuracy; we could still get a much clearer sense of amp behavior at various volume settings, with the balance of overdrive and overhead.
 

The Ballzz

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I am still looking for that goofy, unusual amp that can give the kind of feedback/sustain/harmonic content that is often associated with overdrive and distortion, but achieved with clean tones. On the rare occasions that I've found amps that came "close, but no cigar" it was really cool, yet the response was inconsistent across the spectrum.
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Gene
 

Wally

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I am still looking for that goofy, unusual amp that can give the kind of feedback/sustain/harmonic content that is often associated with overdrive and distortion, but achieved with clean tones. On the rare occasions that I've found amps that came "close, but no cigar" it was really cool, yet the response was inconsistent across the spectrum.
Don't Mind Me, I'm Just Nuts!
Gene

what amps came close but did not win a cigar? What guitar? With or without pedals?
 

ocduff

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I am still looking for that goofy, unusual amp that can give the kind of feedback/sustain/harmonic content that is often associated with overdrive and distortion, but achieved with clean tones. On the rare occasions that I've found amps that came "close, but no cigar" it was really cool, yet the response was inconsistent across the spectrum.
Don't Mind Me, I'm Just Nuts!
Gene

A well setup late tweed Bassman with Tung Sol 5881’s and a overwound Tele Bridge Pickup and the clean tones you describe are all there in spades. Funky as all get out.

I have a weird ‘61 Kay 506 that is goofy on paper but has that cluck, snap and snarl too, but not as bright or big as a Bassman.
 




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