Tech 21 Trademark 60 FOOTSWITCH, I have questions (and need one)

rojo412

Tele-Meister
Joined
May 23, 2019
Posts
340
Age
42
Location
Cleveland, OH
Not long ago, I bought a Tech 21 TM60 combo and it came to me with everything perfect. LOVE this amp.
So I recommended it to a friend and actually saw one come up for sale cheap. I showed him, he bought it.
However, both of us forgot to read far enough into the details to see that there was no switch. D'OH!!! Our bad, it was stupid, I know.

Well, as it were, these are kinda rare to find in the wild. I have mine and that's great for me, but he doesn't. So I'm trying my best to help him solve this problem and definitely could use some guidance on a few of the particulars. That's where I'm hoping someone with some much higher knowledge than I can school me and help me out.

1) There are 2 styles out there. Are they interchangeable?
1657054453627.png


1657054476154.png


They both seem similar, both apparently use a mono 1/4" cable to control 3 different functions. But there were 2 incarnations of the amp, so I'd hate to have him buy the wrong thing if it won't work (his is 1st gen, squarer).

2) How the heck do these work?!?!
It's a 3 button footswitch with LEDs that all function with no batteries and a MONO cable. I've built footswitches that do 2 things with stereo cables and I've built footswitches that use the power supplied through the amp to make an LED work and I've used footswitches that use MIDI or other multiple-lead wiring to switch functions... but this seems like wizardry!
I'd love an explanation, if there is a relatively simple one.

3) Is there a schematic/diagram out there anywhere?

I've looked and had no luck, but I do know that some people are way more in that world than myself. Any leads would be very much appreciated.

I'm thinking there will be more, but I'll start there. Thanks in advance for any help.
 

Dacious

Doctor of Teleocity
Joined
Mar 16, 2003
Posts
10,709
Location
Godzone
I found an answer online - the switch has a microprocessor in it. Not saying it's impossible but it sounds very difficult to build. It has a PCB inside. It also sounds like they're specific to amp. The TM60 doesn't work with the 120.
 

ale.istotle

Tele-Afflicted
Silver Supporter
Joined
Mar 22, 2016
Posts
1,611
Location
Pennsylvania
The manual says you need there switch for full function. Can change channels with any latching footswitch, but effects loop and boost/reverb would be manual.
 

rojo412

Tele-Meister
Joined
May 23, 2019
Posts
340
Age
42
Location
Cleveland, OH
I definitely appreciate the help. I even took mine apart to see what was going on...

IMG_2477.jpg
IMG_2479.jpg
IMG_2480.jpg


It's most certainly NOT an easy one to duplicate, nor is it even easy to remove parts from.
The switches are pressed in and actually only mechanical spring loaded probes with a spring attached, only designed to depress the tactile switches on the board.
If you wanted to remove the board from its place, you'd have to desolder the 3 large pools of solder which hold it to the brackets that are mounted to the switches.
And even if you did that, you'll find incredibly small chips, resistors, etc.

Sent pics to a buddy who builds pedals, his only response was "yeah, some bulls***"
I kinda took that as "No, I can't make one of those from scratch, sorry."

I think I'm holding out hope that Tech 21 still has some of these available for my buddy. Or, something pops up used somewhere.
But hey, at least a generic 1-button switch will change channels, so that's kinda nice.

I do appreciate the help though, thank you for the insights.
 
Last edited:

dogrocketp

TDPRI Member
Silver Supporter
Joined
Jan 30, 2008
Posts
43
Location
Washington, DC
The two pedals are interchangeable. I have a 1/12 & a 4/10 that I use outdoors. The 1/12 lived in my car for 20 years and handled everything well. If the contacts get dirty, the amp can stop altogether. If you have the contacts cleaned, you’re good for another 5 years. Repeat as necessary. Get a cover to keep it as clean as possible. The clean sound jumps up when you plug the pedal in. Short term, put a dummy plug in the pedal Jack.
 

ale.istotle

Tele-Afflicted
Silver Supporter
Joined
Mar 22, 2016
Posts
1,611
Location
Pennsylvania
Not sure this helps solve the problem, but as for how the foot switch works:
The AR3 foot switch uses midi program codes over a 1/4" instrument cable from what I can see in the manual. I'm assuming this is a proprietary setup. The foot switch is powered by phantom power from the amp via the cable.

There was an accessory the ARMD to convert MIDI to control the amp. It has midi program settings in the manual which is here: https://www.tech21nyc.com/t21manuals/ARMD-OM.pdf
I think there is one of these converters on reverb now for about $40. Takes a midi cable input to output to the amplifier via musical instrument cable.

These are the program codes if it means anything to you. I don't know much about midi myself. Maybe some expert here can chime in.

1657115618479.png

EDIT: Post 11 may be what the ARMD does with midi codes.
 
Last edited:

MoHump

TDPRI Member
Joined
Dec 28, 2012
Posts
91
Location
Vermont
Not long ago, I bought a Tech 21 TM60 combo and it came to me with everything perfect. LOVE this amp.
So I recommended it to a friend and actually saw one come up for sale cheap. I showed him, he bought it.
However, both of us forgot to read far enough into the details to see that there was no switch. D'OH!!! Our bad, it was stupid, I know.

Well, as it were, these are kinda rare to find in the wild. I have mine and that's great for me, but he doesn't. So I'm trying my best to help him solve this problem and definitely could use some guidance on a few of the particulars. That's where I'm hoping someone with some much higher knowledge than I can school me and help me out.

1) There are 2 styles out there. Are they interchangeable?
View attachment 1001258

View attachment 1001260

They both seem similar, both apparently use a mono 1/4" cable to control 3 different functions. But there were 2 incarnations of the amp, so I'd hate to have him buy the wrong thing if it won't work (his is 1st gen, squarer).

2) How the heck do these work?!?!
It's a 3 button footswitch with LEDs that all function with no batteries and a MONO cable. I've built footswitches that do 2 things with stereo cables and I've built footswitches that use the power supplied through the amp to make an LED work and I've used footswitches that use MIDI or other multiple-lead wiring to switch functions... but this seems like wizardry!
I'd love an explanation, if there is a relatively simple one.

3) Is there a schematic/diagram out there anywhere?
I've looked and had no luck, but I do know that some people are way more in that world than myself. Any leads would be very much appreciated.

I'm thinking there will be more, but I'll start there. Thanks in advance for any help.
I've seen other footswitches that handle more than two functions. They do it by stacking the functions and measuring the voltage drop, a different voltage for each function or pair of functions. The schematic, if you ever find one, will show you how they do it.
 

Chino

Tele-Meister
Joined
May 2, 2019
Posts
321
Age
66
Location
Seattle
I just wanna chime in and say that these are, indeed, very nice amps. Beautiful cleans. Take pedals well. I bought mine many years ago, convinced a buddy to buy one, and he loved it.
 

rojo412

Tele-Meister
Joined
May 23, 2019
Posts
340
Age
42
Location
Cleveland, OH
@Chino You're basically echoing my whole story! I hope my buddy likes it as much as your friend, you, and I do.

Was just A/B'ing it with my other amp and it basically destroys that one for versatility. I'm about to get a pedal to try with it for some heavy distortion, looking forward to that test soon.
 

Chino

Tele-Meister
Joined
May 2, 2019
Posts
321
Age
66
Location
Seattle
@Chino You're basically echoing my whole story! I hope my buddy likes it as much as your friend, you, and I do.

Was just A/B'ing it with my other amp and it basically destroys that one for versatility. I'm about to get a pedal to try with it for some heavy distortion, looking forward to that test soon.
Yeah I was inspired to post by your story. :) I always used mine at home, never gigged with it. It’s the perfect practice amp. My buddy, also a former gigging guitarist, was also looking for an amp to play at home. He lived far away so all I could do was recommend the amp to him. He bought it and couldn’t have been happier. I always just set a nice clean tone - love the reverb - and used a Rat pedal when I felt like rockin.
 

ale.istotle

Tele-Afflicted
Silver Supporter
Joined
Mar 22, 2016
Posts
1,611
Location
Pennsylvania
I've seen other footswitches that handle more than two functions. They do it by stacking the functions and measuring the voltage drop, a different voltage for each function or pair of functions. The schematic, if you ever find one, will show you how they do it.
Hmmm. Maybe that is what the ARMD converter does with the midi codes, converts to voltages.
 

HotRodJon

TDPRI Member
Joined
Jan 9, 2012
Posts
4
Location
Jersey Shore
So, I can confirm a lot of the comments here. I am located in NJ and have been to Tech21's shop. The owner, Andrew, is a real stand-up kinda guy and a hardware hacker from back in the day. He is very focused on designing and building great technology - the engineering that is under the hood of his amps is not visible but, having met with and spoken to his lead technician, its very impressive. And as an electrical engineer and amp builder myself, I was impressed.

As to the question at hand, you would do well to buy the pedal outright from Tech 21. It is well engineered and, quite frankly, you could not build a copy for what it will cost to buy the original item.

An "FYI" note - the amp is highly modeled to produce its sound. So, the usual trick to swap speakers out to change the sound, as with a more traditional analog amp (whether SS or tube), will not matter here. Tech 21 told me that the Celestion that is in the amp was selected for its very flat response - because the amp is doing all the contouring. So, no gain to be had by changing it out.
 

Jim622

Friend of Leo's
Joined
Apr 1, 2011
Posts
4,413
Location
Philly
Well, as it turns out, contacting Tech 21 is the proper route to take. They still have them available. No fuss, no muss, $50 + shipping.
Seems like the most logical option, yeah?
Thanks for the heads up. I called and have one on the way. It definitely seems like something I want sitting in reserve
 

rojo412

Tele-Meister
Joined
May 23, 2019
Posts
340
Age
42
Location
Cleveland, OH
Right!? I totally see what you mean.
I don't have any reason not to trust my current pedal, it's just fine, but having a $50 "insurance policy" to keep all of the foot functions working for basically my natural life seems NOT crazy.
 




Top