Traynor as a Bassman/JTM Style Amp

Discussion in 'Amp Central Station' started by Paul-McShartney, May 23, 2020.

  1. Paul-McShartney

    Paul-McShartney TDPRI Member

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    So I saw a recent post talking about Bassman reissues and I was wondering what do you guys think about the Traynor YBA 1 Amps? I can get this amp (just the head) for the same price as a LTD Bassman. I know that the LTD isn't point to point but that doesn't bug me a whole bunch if the sound and reliability are there. I've read that the traynors are built like a tank but do they do that Bassman/jtm thing pretty well?

    I don't mind if the Traynor deviates a bit from that classic amp as long as the clean sounds are big and not too harsh (I've had a twin reverb reissue and while I liked the powerful cleans, I found them to be too ice picky)

    Also are these amps good for the money? Or are they sleepers and actually really exceptional amps for any price point?
     
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  2. W.L.Weller

    W.L.Weller Tele-Holic

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    Absolutely get the Traynor. Even if it's been stupidly modded, they're fixable.

    Traynor tested an amp by tossing it out of a second-story window, brushing out the broken glass, installing new tubes and making sure it still worked.

    The YBA-1 can definitely get you the tones, just set aside a few extra bucks for a tech visit unless you do your own work
     
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  3. telestratosonic

    telestratosonic Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    Traynor amps are made in Canada so I'm biased in their favor. I have a Traynor YCV20, a 15 watt tube amp. it's an excellent amp and it's become my favorite over my Blues Junior.
    Traynor amps have a great reputation up here. Right now, the USD-CAD exchange rate is nearly 30% in favor of the USD. If you are buying new, you're in luck.
     
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  4. Paul G.

    Paul G. Friend of Leo's

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    See this? Quality components, nice simple layout. If anything about this amp is less than ideal in your opinion any competent tech can mod it to your liking. I love these things. If you can find one at a good price, get it.

    traynor.jpg
     
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  5. Paul-McShartney

    Paul-McShartney TDPRI Member

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    Ok yeah then I think I might pull the trigger, can you guys describe to me the sonic differences between the YBA-1 and YSR-1? I can get the ysr for 500 USD and it has a tank reverb in it which seems like a better deal than the YBA, which I can get for 600
     
  6. Paul-McShartney

    Paul-McShartney TDPRI Member

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    I'm assuming the extra price tag on the YBA is due to people wanting to mod these to JTM specs?
     
  7. KeepItSimpleTele

    KeepItSimpleTele TDPRI Member

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    I can give the sonic differences question a go below. I have both a YBA-1 and a YSR-1 (plus many other Traynor gems) and they are quite different from eachother IMO. What they do have in common is that all vintage Traynors take pedals really really well. They are built really well, and they are easy to bring back to the stock circuitry (which I like best).

    Traynor is the best of Fender and some British amp designs blended together. Traynor often used Fender blackface or late tweed preamp circuits, applied his own tweaks, used many of the same electronic parts that early Marshalls used (mustard capacitors and 6CA7 or EL34 output sections), and massive Hammond power and output transformers.

    I’ll try and use well known tone benchmarks:

    YSr-1 “Custom Reverb” is like a vintage Hiwatt. Clean, punchy and powerful. Very firm feel, and yet very expressive. The tremelo is beautifully organic...an output bias tremelo.

    yBA-1 “Bass Master” is like a Bassman and a JTM-45 love child with huge Hammond transformers. This is a beast and gets loud fast at 2 on the volume dial...then starts going into crunch heaven from there.

    Both amps originally use 6CA7 tubes...but EL34 tubes are used as well. I actually really like the newer JJ 6CA7 tubes. They sit well in Traynors as they bring some of the Fender 6L6 tube flavour crossed with Marshall EL34 tubes. Traynors sit so well in this trans Atlantic grey area. Both amps have 4 hole inputs...and are best bridged to blend the two volumes. Both are around 40-50 watts and loud. I use an attenuator often.

    Hope that helps...

    Other great Traynor amps too:

    YRM-1 “Reverb Master” is the successor to the YSR-1. It’s very clean and loud as well, but it is clearly more in line tone wise with a Fender Super Reverb. Reverb and optical Tremelo. 50 watts.

    YBA-2 “Bass Mate”is like a small box plexi. 15 watts 6v6 tubes in the 60s versions and came either as a head or combo often with 15” terrible Marsland speaker. Change the speaker and you’re golden! Later 70s versions are cool too but the El84 circuit is quite different.

    YGM-3 “Guitar Mate” deluxe reverb style combo on el84 tubes. 15 watts.

    YGL-3. Twin killer 80 watts on el34s.

    YBA-3. 100 watt beast.

    YBA-1A “Bass Master Mark2” is a higher headroom 90 watt version of the original.
     
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  8. KeepItSimpleTele

    KeepItSimpleTele TDPRI Member

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    Love the Bassman and the JTM45. That’s where the YBA-1 sits comfortably. For me what kills Bassman IMO is the Jensen speakers. I know many people love their sound and they are classic....but they just aren’t for me I guess. I do love a Bassman plugged into a british flavoured speaker cab!
     
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  9. Paul-McShartney

    Paul-McShartney TDPRI Member

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    Wow thanks so much, that was very helpful. Hmm I didn't know the YSR-1 was like a Hiwatt. My favorite tone ever has to be Gilmour's so this might be the right choice for me. Do you ever find that the YSR is kind of sterile or shrill sounding? That's the main thing I hate about the twin reverb (that and the fact it doesnt seem to take fuzz very well).

    Also I will be getting a Traynor 2x12 cab with whichever head I decide on, which is loaded with Celestion G12T-75 and G12-H 70th Anniversary. How do this pair up with either the YSR or the YBA
     
  10. Paul-McShartney

    Paul-McShartney TDPRI Member

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    Also I know the Gilmour sound is a Hiwatt with an alembic 2b? preamp, which ive read is crucial to his fat low end. I've also read by their own, Hiwatts surprisingly don't have a massive low end so I was just wondering how that relates to your YSR
     
  11. mojavedesert

    mojavedesert TDPRI Member

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    I have 70's Traynor YBA3 with master vol. They're great amps, the sound is huge. Totally reliable amp for more that 15 years.
     
  12. Henry Mars

    Henry Mars Tele-Afflicted

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    ... I always preferred the Traynor Amps. I'd say do it.
     
  13. tubegeek

    tubegeek Tele-Afflicted

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    Where do you Traynor owners find them? Are you in Canada by any chance? Almost never see them here in NY. Legendary quality and design. Kevin O'Connor won't shut up about Peter Traynor in his books.
     
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  14. stormsedge

    stormsedge Tele-Afflicted Gold Supporter

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    I'd not hesitate where a Traynor is concerned. Not a tube amp, but I picked up a dusty, dirty Reverb Mate 30 solid state a few months ago at a second hand store. It is built like a tank, and works perfectly (after tossing the shorted instrument cord that may have caused the previous owner to garage it and then toss it).

    I keep going back hoping he'll leave something else ;).
     
  15. Minivan Megafun

    Minivan Megafun Tele-Holic

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  16. Strato50

    Strato50 Tele-Afflicted

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    Mine. It’s a beast of an amp

     
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  17. KeepItSimpleTele

    KeepItSimpleTele TDPRI Member

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    Just like Hiwatts...the YSR-1 doesn’t have a huge low end. You have to be careful with speaker choice. It takes fuzz pedals well (so does the YBA-1) and doesn’t get whoofy/bitey at the same time like a Fender Twin does. It’s focuses the fuzz into a punchy/aggressive midrange area. I like it. Gilmour def did something to pull more bass out of his Hiwatts as mentioned above...think more Pete Townsend Live at Leeds!

    If you are wanting more of a JTM45 sound...warm cleans and crunchy when cranked.....it’s definitely the YBA-1. Their are almost the same amp minus a few changes and the addition of the Hammond Transformers (big part of the Traynor sound).
     
    Last edited: May 25, 2020
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  18. KeepItSimpleTele

    KeepItSimpleTele TDPRI Member

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    I’ve been finding a few on EBay or Reverb. You have to be careful though on prices and be patient. However, even the guys asking a lot the Traynor amps are still a bargain compared to the bigger names. The amps have always been produced in Toronto Canada....closer to NY than where I am in on the west coast of Canada ;) The highest density of used amps are from the provinces of Ontario and Quebec.
     
    Last edited: May 25, 2020
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  19. KeepItSimpleTele

    KeepItSimpleTele TDPRI Member

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    I love the anniversary g12h30. Just be careful. The 40-50 watts these YSR-1 and YBA-1 amps put out is the RMS...not the peak output. The rating is misleading to how loud these amps can get. A g12h30 in a 2x12 is max 60 watts so if you’re going to crank it out really loud I say you’d be risking that speaker. If you like that speaker try a WGS Reaper Hp (rated for 50 watts single, 100 watts in a 2x12”). It will get you there but handle the immense power these amps put out better.
     
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  20. Ringo

    Ringo Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

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    I've owned a few YBA Bassmaster amos, they are heavy well built band sound great, from what I have read the circuit is very similar to a Marshall.

    I owned a 50 watt reverb head don't remember the model, to me the reverb was weak not as good as vintage Fender. I like the Bassmaster better.
    Kind of like Fender Bassman vs Bandmaster heads, I like the Bassman better.
     
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