Pawnhop Steal Vibrolux Reverb Update

39martind18

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Last November I dropped into a local pawnshop and found a Vibrolux Reverb for sale, marked at $320. I checked it out, found that it lit up, but made no sound, so I offered $250, and got it. Took it home plugged it up to one of the two JBL K110s I had, and it made sound. I installed the JBLs, Took it to my tech for a going through, and after new electrolytic caps and the rectifier tube socket was replaced, the VR sounded glorious, but there was one downside: the weight ballooned from approx. 45 lb to well over 55lb. With my arthritic hands, I couldn't use the amp nearly as much as I wanted, so enter a pair of Jensen Neo speakers, weighing in at about 3 lb each. I installed them last night, and the resulting weight loss brought the VR down to a svelte 41-42 lb, eminently giggable, which I did this afternoon. The sound was pure VR, with the Jensens providing a full, crisp sound, with nearly all the punch of the JBLs with only 1/4 the weight= win- win! Still there IS something about those aluminum domes peeking out of the grillcloth...
 

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VonBonfire

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Wow you almost stole that amp! Factory JBL logo and everything! Hard to find a twin with that logo unmolested and in good shape. Didn't even know they put that on a vibrolux. For a while the K series were ignored but it seems like they have caught up to their D series counterparts in value. Even better I've found the K120 with it's slightly larger coil gap takes a lot more abuse than a D in my Twin. I wish I had a second K but I only got one. Yes, there IS something about the aluminum domes peeking out the grillcloth! I use a dolly with straps and it's a snap aside lifting in and out of the van/suv. Neos interest me because the powerful magnet is supposed to give a response like the large magnet in a JBL so reading your review was great! Thanks for sharing!
 

39martind18

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Wow you almost stole that amp! Factory JBL logo and everything! Hard to find a twin with that logo unmolested and in good shape. Didn't even know they put that on a vibrolux. For a while the K series were ignored but it seems like they have caught up to their D series counterparts in value. Even better I've found the K120 with it's slightly larger coil gap takes a lot more abuse than a D in my Twin. I wish I had a second K but I only got one. Yes, there IS something about the aluminum domes peeking out the grillcloth! I use a dolly with straps and it's a snap aside lifting in and out of the van/suv. Neos interest me because the powerful magnet is supposed to give a response like the large magnet in a JBL so reading your review was great! Thanks for sharing!
To clarify: I put the K110s in the amp, they didn't come in it, and I had the JBL badge on hand. A couple of years ago my ex-lead guitarist and I bought a mid 70s Pro Reverb for $525 that had a couple of K120s in it. One of them was toast, so i ordered a rebuild kit that was partially assembled and rebuilt it. It worked great, and both of them went into his 75 Twin. The Pro got a pair of period correct Oxfarts and was sold for $1K. I would have kept it, but I had a 1968 Drip Edge Twin at the time with Jensen Neos in it. The Pro Reverb actually weighed more than the Twin, so it was expendable. The Neos sounded great in the Twin as well. Pics 1 &2 are the1968 Twin and the Jensen Stealth Neos in it. Pic 3 I think is of the Pro Reverb after the K120s were replaced
 

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VonBonfire

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To clarify: I put the K110s in the amp, they didn't come in it, and I had the JBL badge on hand. A couple of years ago my ex-lead guitarist and I bought a mid 70s Pro Reverb for $525 that had a couple of K120s in it. One of them was toast, so i ordered a rebuild kit that was partially assembled and rebuilt it. It worked great, and both of them went into his 75 Twin. The Pro got a pair of period correct Oxfarts and was sold for $1K. I would have kept it, but I had a 1968 Drip Edge Twin at the time with Jensen Neos in it. The Pro Reverb actually weighed more than the Twin, so it was expendable. The Neos sounded great in the Twin as well. Pics 1 &2 are the1968 Twin and the Jensen Stealth Neos in it. Pic 3 I think is of the Pro Reverb after the K120s were replaced

Got it. Every time I go hunting for one of those JBL logos I come up empty so I just gave up.

Good score on the $525 Twin. The K120's are worth at least that much. I've seen orange and black D's hitting $350 and higher the last couple times I've checked. They are getting plain hard to find.

I would've sold the Pro as well. People always call them a junior Twin reverb or whatever but to me the tube rectified Pro is nothing like a Twin. The ones I have tried I didn't like.
 

stantheman

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39, I want You to know that I'm keeping a good 👍 thought for You. From my early 30's to my late 40's I cornered the market on coronary inducing Speakers and Last Rites inducing power to match.
God Bless You Pal.
Stay Healthy.
 

Old Plank

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Congrats on completion of entry to VR-hood! If the shiny neo's end up bugging you too much, I believe my VRs are around only 45 lbs with alnico's.
 

39martind18

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Got it. Every time I go hunting for one of those JBL logos I come up empty so I just gave up.

Good score on the $525 Twin. The K120's are worth at least that much. I've seen orange and black D's hitting $350 and higher the last couple times I've checked. They are getting plain hard to find.

I would've sold the Pro as well. People always call them a junior Twin reverb or whatever but to me the tube rectified Pro is nothing like a Twin. The ones I have tried I didn't like.
Got mine off of evilbay. I've seen both plastic and aluminum. Mine's aluminum and cost me around $10 about five years ago. They show up every so often. Not sure of current prices, though.
 

39martind18

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39, I want You to know that I'm keeping a good 👍 thought for You. From my early 30's to my late 40's I cornered the market on coronary inducing Speakers and Last Rites inducing power to match.
God Bless You Pal.
Stay Healthy.
Gee, It's good to know someone has my welfare in mind! Thanks! Although I've always considered JBLs to be a premium speaker, its only in my very late 60s and early 70s that I've had them in a couple of amps- at an age when their weight becomes an issue. Oh, well!
 

39martind18

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Congrats on completion of entry to VR-hood! If the shiny neo's end up bugging you too much, I believe my VRs are around only 45 lbs with alnico's.
This 'un is my third, two Silverfaces and one "Custom." It's the JBLs that are shiny (my eyes and ears love 'em), and the neos that make my VR weigh in about 42 lb (my back loves this, and my ears like 'em a lot, too)!
 

Old Plank

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This 'un is my third, two Silverfaces and one "Custom." It's the JBLs that are shiny (my eyes and ears love 'em), and the neos that make my VR weigh in about 42 lb (my back loves this, and my ears like 'em a lot, too)!
Ah ok got it; and I hear ya on the weight, at my age and size I'm not loving that part these days but given the luscious sound just can't bear to part with them!
 

39martind18

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Ah ok got it; and I hear ya on the weight, at my age and size I'm not loving that part these days but given the luscious sound just can't bear to part with them!
I'm just about ready to put a pair of D110Fs on the market, they were rebuilt using E110 components several years ago, and are black frame. PM me if you have any interest.
 

39martind18

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I've had good luck with the Jensen neos in both 12 and now 10 inch 100 watt versions. There is a good reason Fender chose them for their Tone Master amp series. If one prefers the classic Fender sound, these deliver it in spades, but if you are searching for different tones, then I don't know.
 

39martind18

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The Fender George Benson Twin amp has the neo speakers as well as a pine cabinet to cut down 13 lbs of the weight. I can't find one in a store to check out though..
The Tone Master Twin (black) will have the Jensen neos in it. That might give you a pretty good idea of how they sound.
 

ReverendRevolver

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I'd love to get a neo I like but didn't like the Tonkerlite I bought.
I find the internet is a terrible terrible place to confirm which speakers I will like!
I'm tempted to hit up MusicGoRound with a head and a speaker cable that's quarter inch to spade clips to test out the used pile. Maybe I could make up a box out of pegboard to hang them in? If I left the cable and box after buying a speaker, they'd probably be able to use it to sell more of the pile.

I can't actually think of any other way to know if I'll like a speaker in a given amp. I got lucky on my weber, but I can't imagine spending $250+ (or even over $100 used) on a speaker that sounded like crap and taking a loss because the almighty interweb agreed it was good.

Life was WAY easier when I was 16 and we'd give someone $20 and an unmarked speaker for the Peavey BW out of thier practice amp. Back then those were all we could test locally.
Now we're all spoiled for choice with old stuff, reconers, and even customer made speakers all occupying an affordable range. But we still can't freaking test it with our own amps until we pay for it. Madness.
 




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