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Torn between AC4s.

Discussion in 'Amp Central Station' started by mistermullens, Dec 10, 2014.

  1. mistermullens

    mistermullens Poster Extraordinaire

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    Recently I traded a bunch of left over gear for a used Vox AC4TV (10" speaker). I fell in love with the amp. Its amazing, love the tone, and it's loud enough for most gigs I play, and if not, I mic it. One of the things I love about it is the size, and I love 10" speakers. Upon purchase, I thought I'd get a second and run it stereo for shows. The purchase of a second AC4 wasn't pressing since I also have a Silverface Vibro Champ, also loaded with a 10" speaker.

    Well, last night, my Vibro Champ crapped out of me, and smoke starting coming out the instrument inputs. Not good. I powered the ol' girl down, and unplugged. I imagine getting her fixed will cost close the amount of getting a used AC4. Whether I go that route is for another thread.

    So, I've read just about every thread on this forum regarding AC4s, but I'd like to get some fresh opinions here. Handwired AC4s are out, and I'm looking at another AC4TV, AC4C1-BL, or the AC4C1-12.

    One thing I like about the TV is that it's pretty straight forward, but I rarely use the attenuator. I imagine the tone is somewhat different from the C1s as those are more "top boost" oriented and the TVs are not? I wouldn't say I'm not a fan of "master volume" amps, but I'm used to playing vintage style amps. A master volume could be a good or bad thing. The C1-12 intrigues me. Its beautiful, but I do fancy the 10" speakers. Anything else I should look for or know about?

    Oh, my band plays a mix of blues, rock, and dabble in psychedelia. I also play a lot of slide.
     
  2. Mad Kiwi

    Mad Kiwi Friend of Leo's

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    I cant add much except that in our band I use an ac30 CCH (head) with a 1x12 cab. I also had the 8" ac4 (tv?) and it was too boxy sounding.....and just a bit average.

    Whatever you do I would suggest sticking with at least the 10" or 12" versions....I am tempted by the 10" version of the ac4 again...especially after seeing the Andertons demo on youtube recently.

    Still worth getting the vibro champ fixed though isn't it?
     
  3. bparnell57

    bparnell57 Poster Extraordinaire

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    The Vibro Champ should be a big priority in my eyes. It's simply a more valuable, and more durable amp in my eyes. Stuff happens every once in a while and things crap out. I doubt it's anything too major, probably a burnt up resistor or something like that. Also, perhaps a different speaker in that could be a nice investment, perhaps a weber Blue Pup 10" or on a cheaper side of things, something from Eminence or the less costly lines from weber. A speaker swap can make an amp go from the sad closet queen into a daily player it wants to be.
     
  4. MadJack

    MadJack Friend of Leo's

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    First ff the Vibro-Champ is worth getting fixed, if not now, sometime down the road. If no, you can send it to me and it will be taken care of! :D

    I love all of the Vox tube sounds, even if they require tweaks to get to my taste. I generally favor the fuller, richer tones of a 12" speaker, but I still love my 10" speakers. The 10"s do hold a certain charm about the tonality, probably their crispness.

    With the styles of music you play, I think the AC4C1s would be your better choice, as they get into the dirt a little better. With the AC4TVs the moderately cleans are more appropriate (Voxes aren't going to give you the Fender cleans anyways). I think a 10" might give a bit more of the honkiness for the slide, where as a 12" would be fuller and warmer for the Blues style.

    If you've read through most of the Vox threads, you've seen I don't care for the stock speaker, the Celestion/Vox VX10 or VX12. To me they are just too sharp, brittle sounding or just ice picky. Vox uses them beacause they can keep their cost down, over any of the better speakers. Just swapping speakers will improve the tone considerably. I'm an AlNiCo Blue fan, as you've probably read, but the other top choice is the GreenBack style speakers. With the slide and Blues, you might be better off with one of the GreenBack type speakers (be it Celestion, Weber, WGS or Eminence) rather than a Blue, but you could do very well with either.

    Overall, IMHO, I think the AC4C1-12 would be your best choice, as you can do some decent cleans, but you can dial in the amount of dirt to suite what you're playing. It would also give the fullest sounds, which should cover more stylistic ground.
     
  5. mistermullens

    mistermullens Poster Extraordinaire

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    My Vibro Champ isn't going anywhere! It's a keeper, and sounds great. It's loaded with an old Weber Sig 10. I'll probably open her up tonight and see if I can tell what happened.

    I'm more than satisfied with my AC4TV, and while I thought I'd upgrade the speaker right away, I think it sounds good. I'm not in a rush to upgrade it.

    While my VC is great, it is a vintage amp, and it has crapped out on me a few times, and while it hasn't happened on a gig, I always expect it too. Yes, I know, anything can go at any time, but I feel like its less likely with a newer amp.
     
  6. JakeStone

    JakeStone Tele-Meister

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    I have been playing through a AC4C1-12 for 2-3 months now. LOVE IT

    Never had the 10" version.. SO I cannot comment on difference.
     
  7. ZackyDog

    ZackyDog Tele-Afflicted

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    I had an AC4C1-BL with a 10" Celestion Gold alnico. It was very nice but a little too small. I love my new AC4HW1 with the 12" Celestion Blue. It has a bigger sound, but not too much for an apartment.

    I would go with an AC4C1-12, and retrofit a Celestion Blue if/when you have the funds.
     
  8. table4too

    table4too TDPRI Member

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    I have an ac4tv head in which I switched the preamp tube from a 12ax7 to a 12au7 for a bit more headroom, but it still breaks up nicely. It doesn't make it lose any volume overall and helps the guitar volume more effective.

    To calm down the jangly vox treble I paired it with a Jensen P10R. It's a genius mix of vox and fender sounds some how.

    Not sure if I answered your question but I use this rig to play blues rock and psychedelic rock.
     
  9. alesplin

    alesplin Tele-Meister Silver Supporter

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    I played both the C1-12 and the C1-BL quite a bit over the three days I made my decision.

    I ended up buying the blue, for the following reasons:

    1: my 4-year-old son _really_ liked the "byue one, daddy!"
    2: I thought that the overall tone of the two was very similar, with the blue giving up a slight bit of fullness in the bottom end, but not so much that it was a turn off for me.
    3: I'm not good, and I don't gig, so the extra volume of the 12" speaker would either be unused or just irritate my wife. When I get much better maybe I'll get an AC-15.
    4: and finally the blue was cheaper.

    #3 definitely doesn't hold in this case, so I doubt you'd regret buying the C1-12 over the blue. They both sound (to my ears) very good.
     
  10. jwmanz

    jwmanz Tele-Meister

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    I have the ac4c1-bl however it is no longer blue. I built a new enclosure to house a 12" speaker (before I heard Vox was releasing a 12" version). For me it made a huge difference. I have a WGS Reaper in it and it sounds great. For the record, I did have a Weber ceramic blue pup in it before I converted it to a 12" enclosure. The blue pup is an upgrade over the stock speaker, but just about anything is.
     
  11. JakeStone

    JakeStone Tele-Meister

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    Does the Celestion Blue fit with no mods?

    Santa (Mrs Stone) is asking me what I want for Xmas
     
  12. MadJack

    MadJack Friend of Leo's

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    The Celestion Blue should fit, someone else did that swap already. If there are any issues, you might have to remove the end cap.
     
  13. BradKM

    BradKM Tele-Holic

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    I've had an AC4TV for about a year, and keep it around primarily because the attenuator allows me to simply plug in and get some grind at a reasonable level when I don't want to disturb anyone else in the house.

    I tried one of the AC4 handwired reissues (gorgeous sound) and a BL prior to picking up the TV . I had a BL on backorder when I found a killer deal on my used TV, and think I actually preferred the sound of the master volume to the attenuator.

    Over the summer I stumbled across a great deal on a matching 1x12 extension cab (I guess it had been separated from one of the AC4 heads) and run through it occasionally. It really opens up the sound, but only when I'm running the amp on the 4 watt setting, which is rare.

    The other amps in my stable are a SF Princeton Reverb, a SF Champ and an Epiphone Valve Jr. head that I run through a variety of cabinets.

    My advice would be to fix the Vibrochamp and invest in a nice ABY pedal if you don't already have one. I think you'll have much more sonic options with that stereo rig than you will running two flavors of AC4.
     
  14. ZackyDog

    ZackyDog Tele-Afflicted

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    Yes! :) with no mods and a 1/4" to spare. Sorry, I couldn't find the picture that illustrates this.
     
  15. lareplus

    lareplus Tele-Afflicted

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    A key feature of the AC4tv that appeals to me is the fact that you can safely get 8 watts with an 8 ohm speaker so long as you only use the 4 watt setting. That means with a high decibel amp you can produce some real volume. Think Red Fang!


    ( note: if you use any other setting with an 8 ohm speaker you blow the amp and the AC4tv is the only one in the series that is overbuilt and allows this )
     
  16. ZackyDog

    ZackyDog Tele-Afflicted

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    Here are the pictures that show the Celestion Blue being installed in the AC4C1-12.
     
  17. lareplus

    lareplus Tele-Afflicted

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    That's nice to see those pictures, thanks for posting them and the link. Fender shorts scales. I have small hands what do you recommend from Fender that plays well with Voxes?
     
  18. ZackyDog

    ZackyDog Tele-Afflicted

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    You are welcome. :)

    How about this for a guitar?
     
  19. lareplus

    lareplus Tele-Afflicted

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    Oh that's very cool. . .thanks for the link, I'm going to have to find one of those and get my fingers on it .
     
  20. Berndizzle440

    Berndizzle440 Tele-Holic

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    +1 yea I agree. If I were the op I would be all over fixing the vibrochamp
     
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