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Peavey “classic” series sleeper amps?

Discussion in 'Amp Central Station' started by Hendrixlvr, Dec 24, 2020.

  1. David C

    David C Tele-Meister

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    I purchased a used Classic 50 212 a year ago and simply find the amp to be a great purchase. Mine was constructed in early 2018 and the circuit board is no longer a folded board like people are saying here. I don't know about the Classic 30 and Delta series, but I suspect they have been redesigned also. It is a single flat circuit board, so if you buy new, you will end up with a different circuit. My amp was in mint condition and while it isn't a Twin Reverb in its sound, find it to have a little more grit to it that makes it fun to play. Mine has the Celestion Midnight 60 speakers, which I plan on changing out to Webers very soon. If you get the Classic 50, you will experience a cooling fan that is loud at low volumes. I just switched mine out the other day and everything is much quieter now.

    I love Peavey amps and think they are decent products at a decent price. I believe the reason the Classic Series is a bit of a sleeper is that most of the guys are into Fender or Marshall, which is fine. But I think Peaveys are just perceived to be slightly less in performance and not as "in".

    However, if you look at their 5150 and connections to Eddie Van Halen, you will find no shortage of love for those amps and they have an exceptionally strong following. Steel guitar players seem to swear by Peavey, too.

    One thing you will find on here is that nearly every person who owned a Peavey Classic 50 and later sold it always regrets their decision to sell it. They wish they had it back.

    Try one out, you will have a nice amp with lots of great sound, and it should hold up just fine for you.
     
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  2. Terrygh1949

    Terrygh1949 Tele-Meister

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    Peavey makes Great guitar amps played a bunch of them throughout the years.
     
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  3. Mexitele Blues

    Mexitele Blues Tele-Afflicted

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    I think there is some confirmation bias regarding the reliability of these amps. With all the techs that frequent these boards, I think the complaints about the folded PCB are to be expected. But what I would also expect to see, and don't, is the proportional number of players posting about how their Classic broke down.

    So what I come away with is that Peavey Classics are great amps that rarely have issues, but when they do, that tech will hold a grudge.
     
  4. Tim Hicks

    Tim Hicks TDPRI Member

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    The real Peavey amp “sleeper” in my humble opinion is the 1970s Peavey Classic series and the Deuce. These are build like tanks and many are still going strong and can be found at very reasonable prices. In a sense they were the budget equivalent of the MusicMan amps with a valve power-amp stage with 6L6GCs but a solid state pre-amp. I have a 4x10 Peavey Classic (50-60watts) with good CTS speakers and it cost less than £100. I guess these may be even cheaper in the USA but in the UK the 2x12 version is easier to find and is the same amp in a more compact (but still heavy) combo. The clean sound is great in a classic Fender style but the distortion sound is perhaps less impressive. The built in Trem and Reverb are both very useable.

    I guess they are not popular because they are heavy and in the case of the Deuce, there is not much demand for 120 watt combos these days but as a backup amp these just keep on rolling...
     
    JRapp, telebanjo and Les H like this.
  5. 3-Chord-Genius

    3-Chord-Genius Poster Extraordinaire

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    Probably now what everyone is talking about, but of mine had this Classic 60/60 stereo tube power amp that he ran his ADA MP-1 into, and it went to a 4X12 cab and sounded killer. They were relatively inexpensive and bullet proof.

    peavey.jpg
     
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2020
  6. haggardfan1

    haggardfan1 Friend of Leo's

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    Holy crap. That's a steal!
     
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  7. radarman

    radarman Tele-Meister

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    Reading through this thread I see two camps on Peavey Classic amps. One is people who play them and like the sound and that other are the people that have found out, like I did, how terrible the engineering was and how cheap they are built. Having repaired many amplifiers my advice would be this; If you can get one cheap enough that it doesn't matter to you that when it breaks and needs service and your eyes pop out of your head when you hear the cost, or you can simply throw it away or sell it non-repaired, then by all means get one. However I would never pay big money for one no matter what condition its in. It could be the finest amp ever, but when you go to fix it you won't be happy. There are so many better options out there. Any vintage Fender would be preferable imho. The Deluxe Reverb or a Princeton or Vibrolux. Or even a super. The newer Fender Reissues are not bad and certainly not as difficult to repair as those old PVs. And there are quite a few techs out there that can and do perform conversions on them and make them the real deal for not a lot of Franklins. Reply #9 nailed it for me on PVs. I built a Hoffman boarded Super Reverb head and used a Classic Tone 4, 8, 16 ohm OT and abslutely love it to death. the Dr Z amps are really nice. Mr. Allesandro on the east coast side converts F reissues. Mikey Man used to and may still. I'd recommend saving up some more and get a good amp that will serve you for many years.
     
  8. DADGAD

    DADGAD Friend of Leo's

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    A good working Classic 30 is a sweet amp. But I don’t like working on them. The three, U folded circuit boards are wired together with solid jumper wires. They break easily.

    Want a great little Peavey sleeper tube amp? Find a Peavey Bravo.
     
  9. Auherre756

    Auherre756 TDPRI Member

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    I played a made in USA Delta Blues for years. It was built like a tank. I never connected with the overdrive channel though; it was too muddy for my tastes. And, the reverb was historically problematic - twist the knob past 5 and the amp was totally unusable. But, man, could that thing push some air!
     
  10. clayfeat

    clayfeat Tele-Afflicted

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    I have enjoyed my DB115 for 15 years and I have never had a problem. I only use it when I have the house to myself. I plug straight in (no pedals) and have all knobs at noon, except reverb at ten o'clock and both tremolo controls at nine o'clock. Delish.
     
  11. turfdoc

    turfdoc Tele-Meister

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    One not so often mentioned aspect of the Peavey Classics (mine is a 1993 Classic 30) is that they mike through soundboards like gold. From clean to grundge, they cut through any wall of sound like a F Bassman on steroids.
     
  12. turfdoc

    turfdoc Tele-Meister

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    my early 90's Classic 30 has reverb but no trem...but I prefer to any other amps I have had, including my 89 Marshall 4211.
     
  13. Arfage

    Arfage Tele-Meister

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    You never know what you're getting with these. A guy I know has the quickly discontinued 100 watt head and 4x10 cab and the first gen 50w 4x10 and they sounded great. I tried a 50 2x12 that sounded horrible. One thing you can expect is them, like all peavey amps they will break down.
     
  14. Spudly

    Spudly TDPRI Member

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    I've got, and had: Classic 20, Classic 30, and Delta 1x15.

    Sold the C30 and kept the other two. The Delta is the cat's pjs. Full bottom end and nice smooth top end. They gain channel is robust and convincing. And the clean is round and fat with just enough brightness. I love this amp. I think it's the best sounding and most portable of the whole gig level Classic line. The Effects Loop is a bonus.
     
  15. Wharfcreek

    Wharfcreek Tele-Meister

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    I'm an 'old guy' and have had more than my share of Peavey amps, as well as literally hundreds of others as well. I've had most every amp mentioned in this thread so far, including the older Classic series stuff including the Deuce, as well as the Classic 30, the 50, and the Delta Blues. In the end, I sold them all. Why? Well, I don't particularly like the sound that is produced when driving solid state devices into overdrive. Maybe as an outboard pedal, but not on the amp! And, yes, if you look at the schematics for the 30, 50, and DB amp, there are a few IC devices in there which are used for shaping the sound of the amp. This said, this is only my opinion of the sound of the amp.....which is why I departed from them. I will say that the DB amp, with it's 15" speaker, seemed to handle this aspect of circuit design better than the single 12", 2X12, or 4X10.....to me at least. So, if I was going to pick one, the DB would be my amp of choice. But, there are 'other' choices out there that make more 'sonic' sense to me, and particularly if you consider breaking up the amp and cab. In today's world, there are a LOT of smaller 'head' type units being produced that sound killer and make the 'transport' of things a lot easier. You can buy a single 15" cab, a single 12", or even a single 10" cab, and have a lot more 'options'. I'm pretty much a devoted 'tube' purist. Yet, I recently purchased two of the little Bugera 6 Watt 'tube' heads, complete with an on-board digital reverb, and I love 'em. They're a bit 'brittle'.....but they are what they are, and for $99 each, I couldn't pass 'em up! There is also a 22 Watt head version from this same company......and I think it puts the older Peavey amps to shame! So, chose wisely padwan! Don't get caught up in the '...it's covered in tweed!...thing! In reality, it's 'simulated' tweed anyway! (actually a vinyl that 'looks' like tweed!!). Spend some time listening to the thing before you buy it. If you like it....go for it! There's always ebay if you're not happy!!
     
  16. ReverendRevolver

    ReverendRevolver Tele-Afflicted

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    They're not bad;

    For the price, they're every but as useable as a HRdlx, with a different sound and ostensibly a more practical gain mode.

    I didn't keep mine long. The size, weight, and volume were all things I couldn't justify settling on compared to what I had. I wanted a smaller amp, and parted with it to buy my supro blues king.

    All perfectly fine though.

    Repair wise, they're less practical inside than other amps (I'd argue that B52s are better laid out, except for one shorting prone spot). The low price they come up for is the best part.
     
  17. basher

    basher Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    I’ve got an old 90s Delta Blues 210. It’s a pretty great rock & roll beast. I find that the OD channel only comes into its own when played at a healthy volume; IMHO it’s pretty much the opposite of a bedroom amp. I like it a lot.
     
  18. telebanjo

    telebanjo TDPRI Member Platinum Supporter

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    My vote goes for a Bravo. Biggest issue has been the cooling fan noise but I’m going to change it out and be good to go. Great little amp but with all the power of a bigger amp, I always check for them in pawn shops when traveling.
     
  19. Tele_Audiodemon

    Tele_Audiodemon Tele-Meister

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    Totally agree. The Peavey range really is great.

    I own a first version Blues Junior which is great for size vs tone etc. I've used it very successfully for performing and recording.

    The Peavey Classic 30 is also a brilliant amplifier and I think sounds better than the Blues Junior. I've recorded in many sessions using the studio Peavey Classic 30. It sounds beautiful.

    It's a bit bigger (cabinet wise) and heavier than the Blues Junior. The larger cabinet size probably helps in having a more rounded and full tone from the Peavey.

    Owning both would be perfect. I would love to get a Classic 30 but these days I only play and record in my home studio and exclusively use amp simulation software with custom molded in-ear monitor headphones.

    I can't recall ever seeing/using a Peavey Classic 30 amp simulation model, which is a shame.
     
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  20. Tele_Audiodemon

    Tele_Audiodemon Tele-Meister

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    Nice find. What a bargain.
     
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