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Please school me on the AC30

Discussion in 'Amp Central Station' started by Ian T, Oct 12, 2015.

  1. DucksEliminated

    DucksEliminated Tele-Meister

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    +1.

    This is one of the best resources there is in my opinion. You get the good, the bad, and the ugly.
     
  2. strummer tele

    strummer tele Banned

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    Dude, LOUD is not always a good thing. We all here do not play Madison Square Garden on a regular basis. The AC30 is at its best is when it is at its most LOUD! How many people really get the opportunity to crank an AC30 to eleven?

    Remember this about the volume of the VOX AC30: The Beatles knew so much of its massive volume that they brought one along for use....at Shea Stadium!

    [​IMG]
     
  3. Silverface

    Silverface Poster Extraordinaire Platinum Supporter

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    It's a matter of learning the basics, not the opinions of unknown users. Sure books are "opinions", to a point. But they provide the factual technical details a buyer who has no experience or knowledge about the amps needs.

    It's called education. You get a more unbiased dose of it out of a few good amp books than in forum posts like "I really like mine, but it's kinda heavy", which sys nothing. Heavy compared to what? Like it for what style, at what volume level.

    A resistance to learning through reading is said, but typical of the internet-dosed world. I'm a victim of it myself, but I try to resist it unless I need info immediately.

    But buying an expensive amp without knowing the differences between all the different builds - and I doubt anyone here can succinctly list each and every AC30 version details in a useful way - is likely to yield unfortunate results.

    So that's why my answer to the question is - read.
     
  4. sir humphrey

    sir humphrey Friend of Leo's

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    Very heavy, very loud and lots of fun.

    Mostly heard played with a good deal of breakup, but personally I love their clean sound - along with the Deluxe Reverb, my favourite clean amp.
     
  5. bparnell57

    bparnell57 Poster Extraordinaire

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    I had a modern AC30C2 in like new condition for about TWO WEEKS before I dumped it as fast as I got it.

    I swapped preamp tubes and the amp hummed like a banshee. Put the old ones back and it didn't stop till I retensioned and cleaned every single cheap Chinese ceramic board mounted socket.

    The modern ones are built like garbage and I wouldn't expect one to last more than 6 months of gigging before it needed servicing as they run HOT.

    I was honestly very upset and disappointed due to the fact that it was my dream amp, and had "That Sound" that I had been looking for.

    Honestly I'd compare the build quality to a Crate V18 or a Bugera. Absolute bear to work on or even just switch tubes.

    For crying out loud, the back panel was glued on in addition to the 16-20 screws it took to take it off.

    For the price of an AC30, buy a used boutique British voiced amp. Honestly my Prosonic does it for me Vox cleans wise.

    Sorry for being so forward with my opinions, but I am disgusted by modern Vox build quality, and will never touch a modern Vox again, even just to flip one.

    I'd rather fight with a handwired clone or a "Vox inspired amp" than a real Vox.
     
  6. burtonfan

    burtonfan Tele-Afflicted

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    I like red neck fishing stories...

    And I own a Vox AC30TB/X as well as an AC15HW... I love them both!
     
  7. strummer tele

    strummer tele Banned

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    Oh, man. The OP is asking for some thoughts on the different VOX amps and any comments from those who have them to aid him in a purchase. He is not looking to write a Phd dissertation on Vox amps. Can you understand that? He is not seeking scholarly work on Vox amplifiers. He does not need to know what Dick Denney's father did for a living.

    The people at this forum have various Vox amps, use various Vox amps, and, get this, can give intelligent responses to his questions regarding Vox amps. But you think the OP should be spending time in the library. Yup, us poor slobs who actually own and use Vox amps can't know a thing about them.
     
  8. Mad Kiwi

    Mad Kiwi Friend of Leo's

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    Advice from a casual user...:eek:

    :lol: (no offence silverface)

    I have had a few vox amps, While I do play in a band it is only a few times a year, all original stuff. We do practice (mostly) weekly though.

    I have had 2 x ac30 cc (Chinese) ...1 head and 1 combo with 2 x wharefdale 12's. 1 x ac30 ccx (2x12 Celestion Blue). 1 x AC 15 cx (1 x Celestion Blue)


    these are my impressions.

    - Quite loud!!!

    - CAN be played at lower volumes as they do have a master volume, like most amps though they do lose a bit of their personality in doing so.

    - Even the head itself is heavy, the combo's DAMN heavy.

    - Wharfedale versus Celestion Blue...WAY less in it than the forums would lead you to believe, I backed to backed them for weeks on end. A small treble adjustment was mostly the difference (the W is a bit brighter, slightly harsher but in a mix indistinguishable especially with a slight turn down of the treble).

    - AC15. For the first time I read in this thread the perfect description of the AC15, Ray Davies, the Kinks. They have a very middy growl that the ac30's don't. I thought I would but personally didn't like it at all. Sold it quite quickly.

    - Chinese CC's DO have a bad reputation but AC30's tend to run hot. CC's tend to run a bit hotter again but they are fine.....Ignore the standby switch (leave it on all the time and you won't have a problem) and ensure you replace the rectifier every couple of years. No issue what so ever.

    These are great amps. Sound amazing and are real fun to play through.

    I doubt you would regret it.

    Unless of course you want to peer at the circuit board and be disappointed in the construction..... :lol:
     
  9. DannyStereo

    DannyStereo Poster Extraordinaire

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    Bingo!!

    I have an AC30C2 and an AC15C1. Most recently I had the AC4C1-12, though I've owned all current variations of the AC4 at one point.

    The AC30s cleans are what I like. Round, punchy, and more in your face than Fender cleans.

    BUT what I love most about Voxes is their inherent ability to be driven, hard if you'd like, by simply putting an overdrive in front of them.

    I don't even need a high gain pedal, really. All I need is a good low to mid OD and I'll get the sweetest crunch.

    Vox, to me, is in the response to effects - delay, overdrive, etc.
     
  10. bparnell57

    bparnell57 Poster Extraordinaire

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    An EH Soul Food is amazing in front of an AC30.
     
  11. KC

    KC Friend of Leo's

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    Yep, it's the tubescreamer-type pedals that sound bad to my ears. Soul Food works, as does the Austin Gold and the Distortron.
     
  12. ZackyDog

    ZackyDog Tele-Afflicted

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    Beautiful, rich, brilliant clean, overdriven and distorted sounds. One of the greatest amplifiers of all time. A very loud 33 watts. It is very heavy an pretty bulky.
    The "right" tubes (I suggest JJ EL84s and JJ EC803s) and speakers are essential for getting the original/classic VOX sound.


    [​IMG]
     
  13. DannyStereo

    DannyStereo Poster Extraordinaire

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    I'm with Jay on the tubes. I further suggest getting them from Eurotubes in Portland. Great guys!
     
  14. ZackyDog

    ZackyDog Tele-Afflicted

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    I'm with Danny on Eurotubes. (It helps when you are in proximity to them; they arrive quickly and undamaged)
     
  15. rze99

    rze99 Poster Extraordinaire

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    Yep to all that
     
  16. kavalero

    kavalero Tele-Meister

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    And with many other amps for that matter .. :D
     
  17. ellisvertellis

    ellisvertellis Tele-Holic

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    Or buy the hardwired version? They're built like a tank!

    Gut shot, for the freaks! :D

    [​IMG]
     
  18. overlock

    overlock Tele-Afflicted

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    If you want the lowdown on all the versions, the best online resource I know of is The VOX Showroom. The ones to avoid, IMO, are the Rose Morris ones (80s up to early 90s) and the current C1/C2, which has a solid-state rectifier. Me, I have a CC2X (previous MIC version, valve rectifier) and it does the trick very nicely indeed.
     
  19. Doctorx33

    Doctorx33 Tele-Afflicted

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    This is just the opinion of an unknown user, but...

    I bought an AC30CC several years ago and disappointed in it. It just didn't have the sound I expected. Then I did the Lyle Caldwell mods to it and it came alive, really sounding good.
     
  20. DannyStereo

    DannyStereo Poster Extraordinaire

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    I disagree. I think the solid state recto is quite nice for someone who is looking for that kind of response, like me :)
     
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