Super Champ X2 update

mad dog

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Had it 5 or 6 weeks now. The X2 continues to impress. Thanks to help from kind folk here on TDPRI - expecially Archtype - I got the amp properly sorted out, and customized to taste with the Fuse software.

Next up was experimenting with external cabs. (I never intended to use the X2 as a combo). First up, an oversize pine 1x12 by Peter Mather, open back, with an old Alltone 1265 installed. And that setup sure does sound good. Way bigger, and louder, than the 1x10 combo.

Next up, I found a tweed 2x10 pine cab used. Built by Larry Rogers. After reading some very favorable reports on Fat Jimmy speakers, ordered two 10" speakers: one C1025, one C1060. Just got everything together a few days ago. Even new, right out of the box, these speakers - in this cab - are a long home run. Very lively. Loud, solid low end. No mud at all. The most impressive sound is the one X2 preset voice I use, the deluxe reverb. All I did was back the mids off with Fuse, eliminate the cab sim. With this voicing selected, gain knob about 5, it sounds crazy good. A low gain drive sound that rivals my favorite pedals. Actually beats them. Tried the lightspeed (after TIM clean boost) with the clean channel on the X2. Very good. Now switched to the DR voicing, no lightspeed. Even better. This is with a tele.

Hard to believe how good a cheap seats little amp like this can sound.
 

Wharfcreek

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Mad Dog, not that it matters any at this point, but I just acquired one of these X2 Champs, and my intentions with it was to 'gut' the thing and try to turn it into an 'all-tube' combo. I had planned to pull the whole digital control section out of the amp, and add another 12AX7 tube as a 'pre-amp', and just drive the tube power amp section with that. My 'tone' stack was going to be just the simple 'bass/treble' that you'd find in a lot of early black-face Fender amps, or even some of the 'brown/blonde' era stuff. BUT......after taking a few minutes to play the X2 in 'stock' configuration I'm almost at the point where I just don't have the heart to kill it! This thing ROCKS!! About 10 minutes into it I'd pretty much figured out all the controls, including the 'tap' function for tempo of the tremolo, delay, etc. My only issue remained that the foot switch I received with the amp didn't seem to operate properly. But, sans footswitch I was bouncing back and forth between the two channels, dabbling with the effects and 'voice' selections, and 'WOW'!! ........ what a GREAT little amp!!! Now I know why it also comes in a half-stack head version! I expected to spend about 5 minutes with it and then go 'gut' the thing in my shop today and begin my transition project. After about 2 hours of playing it, I don't know that I can go through with it! At least not yet any way. I may have to go find a 2nd one somewhere and maybe do my DNA change to that one. Either way, I just wanted to chime in here and let you know what 'respect' I have for this X2 amp. Also, I noted you mentioned the 'software' updates. Could I get you to give me some clarification on that? I understand that these amps can be 'modified' by the addition of a software change, and that it does offer some actual improvements (hard to believe it can get much better!!). I'd like to know more about that! Many thanks.....and nice job with your amp!!

Tom
 

39martind18

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I concur with Mad Dog's assessment of the X2. I picked up a SCXD, the X2's forerunner, but went in a slightly different direction at first: I upgraded the light-duty speaker with a JBL D110F. The difference was amazing- so much sound in such a small package! Add in the "Enhancer" cabinet, and the sound was HUUUGE! In addition, the aesthetics of the JBL are killer. I eventually dropped a pair of 6L6s into it, increasing the power output to around 20 watts. To preserve the OT, the 6L6s had to be biased pretty cold, but I love the tonality of this little beast!



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Telecaster88

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Hard to believe how good a cheap seats little amp like this can sound.
I have a Vox AV60, an SF Champ, and the SCX2. Love the others, but I always end up drifting back to the SCX2.

It's my belief that the reason this amp was discontinued is that Fender realized it was too good of a deal, and would maybe eat into sales of the Tone Masters. I absolutely love this thing. Every guitar I've played through it has sounded great.

69316836_10212068885516597_8187354310774882304_n.jpg
 

archetype

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Edit: Oops. This was an answer to another thread.

@mad dog, the specs of the stock PT are unknown, at least to me. Hammond's replacement PT is a 290ACX and the specs are below. I have two assumptions.
1. The Hammond specs are are what it takes to power the SCX2 in stock form, plus some extra.
2. The original Chuang Meei 0091234000 doesn't make as much Amperage as the Hammond.

Primary Volts120V @ 60 Hz
Secondary 1300V @ 100 mA
Secondary 234Vct @ 100 mA
Secondary 39V @ 1.5A
Secondary 46.6V @ 1.5A
 
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mad dog

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Also, I noted you mentioned the 'software' updates. Could I get you to give me some clarification on that?
Hey Tom, and Martin. We're all in the X2 club!

About the software. The X2 was designed to be configurable via Fender's proprietary FUSE software. It is still available for download:


Once loaded on your PC, all you need is a USB cable to connect. It'll be trial and error on the amp side. My phone charger cables won't fit. The cable that came with my Sony PCM50 recorder did fit. You can also find and download the manual for FUSE, which really helps.

I used a laptop to mess with settings. I also downloaded a graphic from somewhere, showing the 16 or 17 modeling settings, for visual reference. FUSE allows you to set/change parameters for the clean side, and all the modeled choices. What you can change depends on which modeled selection you make on the amp. Just nose around, try a few things. You'll get the idea.

It took me a couple sessions to get it right. I got lost in cab sim selections. Ultimately realizing that none of them improve the sound, at least to my taste. So I chose "none" (or the equivalent) for each of the modeled sounds. The other key adjustment was EQ. Out of the box, mids set high on the clean channel. Which makes it sound not as good as it could. Backed down to 4 or so, way better. Same goes of many of the other modeled choice. That DR selection - my favorite - didn't sound really good til I backed off the mids. Funny, as there is no mids knob on a DR.
 

mad dog

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As to possible PT mods ... that was me stumbling my way up the learning curve. I could not get the amp to sound right in stock form. A speaker upgrade helped, but I was still getting unwanted distortion on the low notes at higher volumes, on both the clean channel and the DR setting.

Much screwing around later, I realize that everything cleans up with Mids down, and with cab sims off. No need for any new anything. All it took was trial and error, getting to know the amp and how FUSE can modify settings.
 

mad dog

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One more X2 note: The only thing the X2 gives up in comparison to other 15 watt amps is volume. Either as a combo, or used as a head with a cab, my X2 is not a volume powerhouse. I keep volume up at 7 or so for practice in the basement music room. That is loud ... for the basement. The sound is more or less perfect at that level. Borderline earplug territory, kind of a just right loud, especially with some guitar volume backed off. That said, I'm not sure how well the X2 would do live, with a drummer.

Which does not matter to me. It's doing exactly what I want, here at home. BTW: I have two other 15 watt amps here that could gig. The '65 RI Princeton Reverb 1x10 with a better speaker is louder than I expected. It's a way bigger sounding 1x10 than the X2, as a combo I mean. And the Magnatone Varsity non reverb is much louder. The Magnatone at 7 in the basement would be hurtful.
 

Willie Johnson

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I sure liked mine; I only got rid of it because I got a PRRI for next to nothing. I dropped the fixed mids way down in the Fuse software but didn't use the amp models much (but did mess around with the onboard effects--the slapback echo and Vibratone sound great).
 

archetype

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I just tried to find that Fuse site and it came up with a message that says Fender no longer supports it. Did I miss something?

Fender no longer supports Fuse, but it still works fine and the downloadable install file is findable on the net.
 

archetype

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I may need some help with that. I can't seem to find it.

Try this for the Windows version:


It requires Microsoft Silverlight software which should be present in all modern versions of Windows. If you get an error saying Silverlight is missing or broken, you can download Silverlight from Microsoft.

I've never tried it, but there's also a Remuda app for Android phone or tablet. It has the basic functionality of Fuse, but with a simple interface that doesn't look like an amp with knobs.
 
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The Angle

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I have one of the Sweetwater specials in maroon tolex with a Celestion Greenback. While there was nothing wrong with the stock-speaker models I tried, a high-end speaker like a Greenback really makes it sing. It's one of my favorite amps.
 

Kevin Wolfe

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I may need some help with that. I can't seem to find it.
I’m in the same boat. I’ve had a SCX2 for about 6 years and have FUSE downloaded on my MAC. I tried to use it yesterday and it won’t even open.
I would be interested in finding some way to re-install a suitable substitute on the MAC.
 

archetype

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I’m in the same boat. I’ve had a SCX2 for about 6 years and have FUSE downloaded on my MAC. I tried to use it yesterday and it won’t even open.
I would be interested in finding some way to re-install a suitable substitute on the MAC.

You'd need to search for...

Download fender fuse software mac

...like I'd have to.

Did you save the install file you originally used?
 

Kevin Wolfe

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You'd need to search for...

Download fender fuse software mac

...like I'd have to.

Did you save the install file you originally used?
The app appears to be still installed, but won’t open at all.
Every thing I’ve found via a search results in a message says Fender no longer supports the software.
 




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