Opinions on Fender Princeton Reverb Reissues

Hey_you

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PRRI.jpg I went with the tweed model. It has the Celestion G12-65. Great sounding and can get loud with gain pedal in the front.
 

Axegrinder77

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Definitely the 65 over the 68 imo. 68 needs mods to be usable. Look into the 12 inch speaker version, unless you're set on a 10. 10 is good for home playing, but 12 sounds way better live. IMO.
 

E5RSY

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I found the '68 to be too bassy, and the overall sound seemed to be somewhat two-dimensional.
 

JDRNoPro

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For that classic Princeton Reverb sound, go with the 65. That's what I was looking for and that was the clear choice for me. The 68 is a decent amp but not really the classic PR sound to my ears. You can always add dirt but you can't add clean.
 

moosie

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I prefer 6L6 Fenders, but when I was playing smaller amps, I had a Blues Jr that I liked. Then I got a PRRI. I played it, and the only other time I fired up the BJr was to ensure it worked before selling it.

The PRRI was extremely lush. I think it has the best reverb of all the Fenders.
 

darkwaters

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Had mine for years. Great amp. I replaced the stock Jensen C10R that it came with for a ‘65 Alnico 10” that I had lying around. Big improvement.

I’m not the biggest fan of the scooped thing; the highs can be a bit shrill and the bass too much; so I keep the Bass on 1 and the Treble on 2, which accentuates the mids. A good middy OD takes it even more into brownface/tweed territory.

On a side note: a Catalinbread 5F6 turns the amp into a beast.
 

sloppychops

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I have the 68 Custom Princeton Reverb reissue. I was aware of the differences between this and the 65, and from what I heard on demos I preferred the warmer sound of the 68. The 65 sounded brighter, almost to the point of brittle. Really, though, the clincher was finding a barely used one for $625. If it had been a 65, I probably would have it instead of a 68. I don't think you can go wrong with either one.

Awhile ago it would start making a horrendous noise after warming up. Sounded like a really loud static noise. I looked this issue up online and found a forum where someone had the same problem and someone suggested switching the tubes around. I moved V2 to V1 and V1 to V2. To my surprise, it worked. The problem hasn't reoccurred.
 

afterdarkmusic

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Absolutely in love with my ‘65 PRRI. It’s the sound I always wanted from my teles. Just plugged in and there it was. Lush, chimey, warm, thick, and the reverb and trem add gorgeous texture.

Never played a Blues Junior, so not a ton of help there. But I love the thick clean tones from the Princeton, and how nicely it plays with pedals.
 

PoorNoodle

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I have a PRRI (65 Blackface). It was great. I swapped the speaker to a Jensen P10R-F. Now it was wonderful. I bought an attenuator so I can crank it to 10. Now it’s awesome!
 

Jared Purdy

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Hi all, I'm thinking about getting a Princeton Reverb because I love the sound I've heard some guitarists getting out of them. I'm hoping that some of you may be able to give me opinions/recommendations re: the 65 and 68 reissues. I currently play on a Blues Jr. Any and all input will be appreciated.
Thanks,
jb

I’ve had the 65’ PRRI and I currently have the 64’ Custom Hand Wired. One thing you’ll need to consider is getting rid of the P10R that’s in there. It does not keep the bass together. Check out the Eminence GA10-SC64. It’s leaps and bounds better sounding, right out of the box. The tone between the 65 and 64 are similar, but I prefer the tone from the 64’. Even with the P10R, it held together better than the 65’. Big price difference though. I’m not a fan of the 68’, so I’ll just leave that there.
 

MilwMark

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I would take a stock BJr IV over a PR any day of the week and twice on Sunday.

My frame of reference is subdued rehearsal/shows. Though I guess for home I would also choose the BJr IV. Both it and the PRs are too loud for home.

The problem with the PR is it's neither fish nor fowl. Way too loud for home. Too quiet and small for all but the most subdued shows.

Of the PRs I strongly prefer the '68 over the '65. Just turn the bass down a bit more.

YMMV.
 

beninma

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View attachment 905612 I went with the tweed model. It has the Celestion G12-65. Great sounding and can get loud with gain pedal in the front.

This is the one I selected and bought this summer after trying as many as I could. For me the Blues Junior wasn't even close. It sacrifices its clean tone for more dirt IMO and I just wasn't looking for that.

I tried the '68 and didn't like it as much.

As for bright versus warm a lot of that has to do with what guitar you plug in and what your expectations are. We're all different and we all have different ears and guitars.

I have a G&L Doheny which is very bright, at least as bright as a really sharp Tele. My other guitar is a Reverend Charger HB, it is much much darker. Both the '68 and the '65 have more than enough EQ range for either of these guitars. For the G&L the Treble needs to get turned down on the amp a little bit to tame it and the bass can go up. The Reverend sounds best with some extra treble dialed in and the bass turned down a little. Maybe if I was playing a show and didn't want to touch the dials on the amp I'd need to use an EQ pedal but I don't really have to deal with that.

IME not all amps have the range to make my two guitars sound good.. but the Princetons do, whether it's '68 or '65.

If you're a one guitar player and you have a super bright Tele maybe you will prefer the '68, if you play a darker guitar with humbuckers maybe you end up liking the '65 more. But they are both pretty flexible amps.

For volume level that also depends so much on the player and where it's getting played. We can't all agree on that, what sounds good at low volume to one player doesn't to another. I think all the Princetons sound great at lower volumes and also at louder volumes. I think they are very remarkable for their ability to sound good at low volume without needing any major tricks.

There is no question the custom '68 has a little more noise, it's a direct side effect of the modifications Fender made to it to make it break up faster.

The flipside is the '68 has deeper tremolo available, again Fender made modifications for that.

Both of them have great Reverb & Tremolo IMO though, I prefer them to any pedal I tried if you're talking spring reverb or tremolo simulations.
 
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beninma

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Yah this shouldn't be THAT agonizing of a decision.

They are all really, really great sounding.

I keep having this dilemma where I go setup my Orange Rocker 15 and the 65 Princeton next to each other and play them back and forth trying to convince myself to keep the Orange.

The Princeton can't do the gain stuff really. At least mine can't with the 12" speaker, it just starts getting too loud to be comfortable in my space.. but it's like it doesn't matter. It just sounds SO good.
 

Uncle Daddy

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I’ve had the 65’ PRRI and I currently have the 64’ Custom Hand Wired. One thing you’ll need to consider is getting rid of the P10R that’s in there. It does not keep the bass together. Check out the Eminence GA10-SC64. It’s leaps and bounds better sounding, right out of the box. The tone between the 65 and 64 are similar, but I prefer the tone from the 64’. Even with the P10R, it held together better than the 65’. Big price difference though. I’m not a fan of the 68’, so I’ll just leave that there.

I'd agree, I too have the 64 CHW version, and the p10 r is a bit muffled on the bottom, and a bit brittle on the top. I thinks the stock 65 comes with a c10r. I tried a Fender alnico blue, based on the Eminence 1028k, which is pretty good, but I just ordered the SC64. Best 10" I've tried is the Jupiter 10SC.
 

Jared Purdy

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I'd agree, I too have the 64 CHW version, and the p10 r is a bit muffled on the bottom, and a bit brittle on the top. I thinks the stock 65 comes with a c10r. I tried a Fender alnico blue, based on the Eminence 1028k, which is pretty good, but I just ordered the SC64. Best 10" I've tried is the Jupiter 10SC.

I'm not sure where I came across the GA10-SC64, made in partnership with amp "guru" George Alessandro and Eminence, but it does what the Jensen can't do. Actually, I think it was @Wally who told me about it.

Alessandro worked with Eminence to match the specs of a 64 10" ceramic that would have been in a original 64 PR. I'm not sure which speaker was used as a reference point, but it gets very favourable reviews. The highs are tamed as is the bass. It holds together much better.

The original PR never had a alnico speaker in it, so even that is a departure, if one is trying to stay period correct. The 65' PRRI I bought several years ago came with the P10R, as did the 64 CHW. Very happy with this amp.

As an aside, I have no idea why Fender wouldn't be contracting out to Eminence to supply this speaker, at least for this amp? They're an American company and they've worked with Fender since the early to mid 70's, and they have the correct specs, from what I was told by Alessandro himself. And, it's cheaper than the Jensen.
 

Uncle Daddy

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I'm not sure where I came across the GA10-SC64, made in partnership with amp "guru" George Alessandro and Eminence, but it does what the Jensen can't do. Actually, I think it was @Wally who told me about it.

Alessandro worked with Eminence to match the specs of a 64 10" ceramic that would have been in a original 64 PR. I'm not sure which speaker was used as a reference point, but it gets very favourable reviews. The highs are tamed as is the bass. It holds together much better.

The original PR never had a alnico speaker in it, so even that is a departure, if one is trying to stay period correct. The 65' PRRI I bought several years ago came with the P10R, as did the 64 CHW. Very happy with this amp.

As an aside, I have no idea why Fender wouldn't be contracting out to Eminence to supply this speaker, at least for this amp? They're an American company and they've worked with Fender since the early to mid 70's, and they have the correct specs, from what I was told by Alessandro himself. And, it's cheaper than the Jensen.

I'm looking forward to givingthe SC64 a try. I just refitted the Fender Blue Frame, and it's smoother than the p10r, less toppy and allows more of the "piano" through from the bass end. Just waiting for the neighbours to go out to test the breakup!
 




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