Vibro King.

Discussion in 'Amp Central Station' started by fasteddie42, Sep 13, 2019.

  1. fasteddie42

    fasteddie42 Tele-Afflicted

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    Please mind that I've done a ton of deep diving and research. I also understand that the vibroking is a pretty unique circuit design within the fender lineage.

    And this is in regards to a year 2000 model so it has the 6v6 revery recovery rather than the original el84 (?)

    I'm out of town on a job, but one of these popped up locally, so when I get back home I do plan on setting up an appointment to try it out.

    For those who own/have played/in the know.

    What classic fender design/circuit/sound is the vibro king most similar too?

    I've heard it described as a tighter 59 bassman reissue. Any truth to this statement?

    I've read alot about the interactivity of the tonestack and the volume. Running the volume really high with the tonestack low gives up a hairy low(ish) volume sound, running the tone stacks wide with the volume low for cleaner leaning sounds and inbetween.

    Can someone please expand upon the interactivity??

    I've read its a marriage between tweed/brownish/blackishface depending on the settings, others say its not like any of them.

    I'd love to open a dialoge to all things vibroking, I'm happy to hear any and all opinions and experiences with the model, good, bad or inbetween.

    Thanks y'all!
     
  2. 63 vibroverb

    63 vibroverb Tele-Afflicted

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    I believe the circuit is mostly a 5F6A (59 bassman) with solid state rectifier and a 6G15 reverb tank added to the front of the amp. I've played one and liked it a lot, but it didn't have enough clean headroom for me.

    Other Fender amps I've played/owned that are similar in character: Prosonic, Tonemaster, Vibrolux Custom, and Dual Professional.

    If you're feeling like looking at the boutique non-compromised version, check out the Supro Tremolectric 3x10 amp. Made by the same guy who made the Vibro King, Bruce Zinky.
     
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  3. Wally

    Wally Telefied Ad Free Member

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    Yes, the VK most closely resembles a 5F6A. The solid state rectifier will yield a tighter Sonic. Fwiw, the 6V6 or the 6BQ5 in the earlier version is the Reverb driver tube...not the return. I have a VK that did not yield good sounds. The one that I worked on for Bugs Henderson..RIP...was a great amp.
     
  4. Chiogtr4x

    Chiogtr4x Poster Extraordinaire

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    Bruce Zinky also designed the mighty Smokey Amp!
    I've had mine since they came out, mid-'90s
    ( it's the Zinky I can afford!) 20171024_100812.jpg
     
  5. Tonemaster

    Tonemaster Tele-Afflicted

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    Love my Prosonic. Very versatile amp. amps.jpg
     
  6. King Creole

    King Creole Friend of Leo's

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    Probably the best-sounding amp I ever played was a Vibro King. I played with it several times in a guitar shop and stupidly didn't buy it. It sounded the way I look: fat, hairy, and beautiful.
     
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  7. gridlock

    gridlock Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    My early VK was running Celestion Golds. A great sounding amp that I picked up pretty cheap. Nice warm tones that would start to breakup around 4-5 but still pretty loud. I used the VK as a backup amp in my last band. Mine was running an EL84 for Reverb. I recall that it took a Tubescreamer pretty well.

    Only sold the VK because I also owned both a SF and BF Super Reverb at the same time and thought that the Vibro King was somewhat redundant. I sold all but the BF Super (now also gone).

    The VK’s tone was definitely warmer than the two Supers (which I really liked). I preferred the Tube Rectifier (sag) and Reverb from the Super over the VK. In addition both Supers seemed lighter than the VK.

    I do kind of miss the Vibro King. It has its own sound, maybe more brownface sounding to my ears, with lots of warmth, and plenty of bass.

    I’ve since downsized to a BF Deluxe Reverb and BF Vibrolux Reverb but I am still glad that I owned a Vibro King.

    6D78AF08-0C8F-4F62-B3D7-A94CF433095A.jpeg
     
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2019
  8. nixdad

    nixdad Tele-Meister

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    Love that sound. Played one years ago (maybe 2012), could have bought it but bought that Vicky over there instead. Really didn't need that much amp. But damn.
     
  9. hotrodkid

    hotrodkid Tele-Holic

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    Always wanted a VK from the first time I plugged into one back in the late 90's. Way too loud for me now. I guess for me that ship has sailed.
     
  10. Wally

    Wally Telefied Ad Free Member

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    Ime, the VK is an amp that can sound good at any volume level. Will it create distortion at lower volumes?? That is another question.
    Through the same speakers, the VK is about twice as loud as a 5 watt amp.
     
  11. 63 vibroverb

    63 vibroverb Tele-Afflicted

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    Love the blonde/brownface look of your Prosonic. Did you buy it like that or did you refinish it yourself?
     
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  12. Wally

    Wally Telefied Ad Free Member

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    I have seen them in blonde and black tolex.
     
  13. Misty Mountain

    Misty Mountain Tele-Meister

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    If you can find one you should check out the Supro Tremolectric. This was Bruce Zinky’s Vibro King that he really wanted to build after he left Fender... Mine is awesome!
     
  14. Strato50

    Strato50 Tele-Afflicted

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    Best amp Fender ever made. I used one for years. Still have it. I bring it occasionally. When Pinetop Perkins tells you “ Son that is some serious tone” you know it’s legit. Mine pictured here has the 6V6s reverb driver.
     

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  15. Tonemaster

    Tonemaster Tele-Afflicted

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    It was a head, previous owner built the cab for it. Has a G12 H30 Celestion and MM tranny. Also did the recommended Zinky mods for treble. This is a keeper amp.
     
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  16. tonyj

    tonyj Tele-Afflicted

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    The VibroKing is without doubt a really wonderful amp. I love mine.

    Describing a particular sound is never an easy thing to do do, but the shimmering sounds that this amp can emit somehow remind me of icy cold water running down the walls of a wet cave. This is a sound that this amp can provide in spades and a sound I so enjoy, and especially so with a down and dirty slow blues number. Obviously more raucous sounds are also on tap for the rowdier types from the 60 watts available to drive the three 10" Jensen P-10R speakers.

    My VK is the Blonde Tolex version, similar to the one that 'gridlock' has shown in post #7.

    I had previously traded a 1963 Vibroverb for a pristine and gorgeous SC (1956) LP Jr., but was soon regretting the loss of my rare and hugely coveted amp, when I first had a chance to hear this actual VK put through it's paces. I realized that there were more than just a few similarities in the milk chocolate cover and 'milk chocolate' sounds of the now departed VibroVerb and this minty blonde VK, and which I was soon to acquire when it's owner temporarily ran short on $$$$$. My feelings of a great loss were somewhat dispelled, although to this day I still wish that the Vibroverb was still in my guitar room ......... But sorry, the '56 LP Junior is staying put, as is my VibroKing ............ (So why can't I have everything?!).
     
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  17. gridlock

    gridlock Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    Wow, you owned a ‘63 Vibroverb. A dream amp for me. I had a ‘63 Vibroverb RI that I loved, if it was hand-wired and had a tube rectifier, I’d still own it.
     
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2019
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  18. tonyj

    tonyj Tele-Afflicted

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    Yup, I really did. The '63 Vibroverb was here for a few years before I fell for the 56 Junior, which I still have.

    I have some regrets, but all in all it has worked out as the guitar has become a cherished possession, and I have other amps that I can enjoy. Not a VibroVerb unfortunately, but still some nice amps such as -my 2019 '65 Powder Blue Princeton Reverb-Amp, and a SF '68 Custom Deluxe Reverb-Amp, to compliment one or two other nice Juniors and of course telecasters.
     
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  19. gridlock

    gridlock Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    I’ve seen ‘63 Vibroverb’s go for $7000 and ‘64 Vibroverb’s for $4000. I’d take either but a ‘63 is preferred.
     
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  20. coloradojeff

    coloradojeff Tele-Holic

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    My Pro-Sonic sounds the most like my Vibro-King (but 20lbs lighter). Both Bruce Zinky amps.
     
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