Vox Cambridge50

Discussion in 'Modeling Amps, Plugins and Apps' started by LGOberean, Jan 25, 2020.

  1. fender4life

    fender4life Friend of Leo's

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    Here we go...
    https://diyaudiostore.com/products/korg-nutube

    So it IS a tube but just build differently than traditional vacuum tubes. Interesting. But of course the aren't going to tell you how long they last and i scanned the page and saw nothing about that. At $50 a pop they better last tho ! They are low voltage and don't even heat up to the point of glowing so that in itself should contribute to lifespan.
     
  2. LGOberean

    LGOberean Doctor of Teleocity

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    I just got back from spending a several hours, first at the local GC, then at Clawson's Music. Neither one of them had the Cambridge50. GC did have the Mini Super Beetle, so although I've test driven it several times before, I briefly did again. As I've said before, I may yet break down and buy one someday, because the tones are good, and they're just so stinkin' cute! But as is--without a second cab with an 8 ohm speaker--it's not the amp I'm looking for. I don't think the MSB25 by itself is any louder than my Pathfinder 15Rs.

    So I went on to Clawson's Music. As I said, they didn't have it either, but the person I dealt with didn't want to order it. He muttered something about not ordering from them as a rule because of having to do a minimum order of amps/product. The only thing Vox he had in the store was the Pathfinder 10, and he said they'd had them forever and can't get rid of them. So I guess going to Clawson's for Vox was a mistake. Sad, because I like dealing with them for the most part, and I like supporting local.

    So to give them a chance, I tried what he had in stock, even though I really had my heart set on the Vox. He pulled out the Fender GT100. He kept trying to tell me how easy it was to dial in, but to me scrolling through 200 presets is just confusing. Then I tried the Champion 40. I had test driven the Champion 20 years ago, and liked it pretty well for what it was. The voices were basically Tweed, Blackface British and Metal. The Metal I'd never use, and since I'm such a Vox guy, I spent my test driving time on the British voice setting, to see if I could get it to sound like a Vox. Close but no cigar.

    He wanted me to try a Katana 50 MkII, but they were sold out of them. He wants me to come back when they get them in, but I dunno. As much as I want to give them the business (wait...that sounded wrong), I think I know what I want. I'll probably either go back to GC tomorrow to order one, or else order one online from Sweetwater.
     
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  3. LGOberean

    LGOberean Doctor of Teleocity

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    As I understand it, NuTube is vacuum fluorescent display tube technology repurposed for audio application. A key word there is "repurposed." VFD technology is something like half a century old now, so although the application is new, the technology is not. It has a service life expectancy that is a known characteristic of the technology. According to Korg's FAQs page...

    Now, that means if I were to play through the amp 3 hours per day every day of the year, the Nutube is expected to last for 27 years. I'll be lucky if I live that long! :twisted: Even if the Nutube only lasted half that long, I'd still say I got my money's worth for a $300 amp.

    I don't know if anyone else out there is making Nutubes by another name, although I've seen articles where others have done this on an individual scale. Doesn't seem to be something that's not reproducible. And as far as I can tell, Korg isn't going anywhere. So I'm not really worried about the Nutubes.
     
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  4. fender4life

    fender4life Friend of Leo's

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    Same here, i'm the same age as u exactly. I'd be lucky to make it thru the first 20% of it's life. But that's if they don't fail long b4 thier projected lifespan. I won't be around a lot longer but even at that i can outlive about 20-25% of tubes because thats about how many seem to fail these days, sometimes within minutes out of the box. So if the failure rate is anything like regular tubes, $50 a pop could be expensive if u get unlucky. I hope they come with a warranty. Typical end of life means little. I have tubes from the 80s i have used a lot and still sound great. I've also had more new tubes than i can count that failed one way or another within minutes to a few weeks.
     
  5. jageya

    jageya Tele-Holic

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    $50 IS CHEAP for this part..wow..i still think its a triode and not a tube as in the nano tube by bluamp.
     
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  6. jageya

    jageya Tele-Holic

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    I have always been partial to kords VR tech from many many years ago with the ad60/120 vtx valvetronix amps which i have a bunch. If you see one of those amps used at gc you should take it in a room and mess with it. Not all amp voicings are deadon but for me the fenders/vox and botique voicings are very good.
    I hope korg will advance the nutube 150 amps to include great effects onboard and channel switching and stereo power.
     
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  7. fender4life

    fender4life Friend of Leo's

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    A triode IS a tube. A 12ax7 for example is a dual triode, or 2 gain stages. Anyways, $50 is cheap but like i said, only if they don't fail like traditional tubes often do. And those typically are only warranteed for 6 months. $50 and it fails after 6 months ain't cheap copmpared to say a 12AX7 at $10-15. So my question is really failure rate.

    The vox sounds are the only ones i'd be picky about. All i'm really interested in with modeling is getting one great tone which i don't care whether it resembles a certain amp model or not as long as it has the tonal details i crave like great touch, balance etc. But vox tones are a different story for me....if it has vox tones that truly nail the real thing very closely i'd love that because vox is the only amp who's tone i love for it's unique nature and not as a basic generic great tone. Almost like an effect. So f it diesn't get awful close i'd never use it unless it just happened to nail that generic thing i need as my main tone better then any of the other models. Put it this way....if i have a modeler that totally satisfies my needs for that one great tone i use for everything, a vox tube amp is the only other amp i would like to have for that unique and great vox tone. Just something so unique and great about it, and if the modeler could get very close to that i'd be over the moon. I actually went and demo'd voxs recently thinking i would love to have one along with my modeler but i just felt it was too much $ for what would be a luxury item for me.
     
  8. LGOberean

    LGOberean Doctor of Teleocity

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    Okay, UPDATE...

    I pulled the trigger! :D:p

    No, I didn't find one locally, so I've taken a chance and done the "buy before you try" thing. And actually, it's really not much of a gamble, because I ordered it from the local Guitar Center, so I can try it for 45 days and then decide. I rarely ever do this, but I'm guardedly optimistic that I'll be happy with the amp and it'll work for me. And if not, then there is that return option.

    So, with an expected 3-5 business days ship time, I could have it the middle of next week at the earliest. I will post a NAD thread after I get my hands on it and have my first impressions.

    Thanks to everyone for your participation in this thread. You've provided encouragement, insights and good questions to consider, and it helped.
     
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  9. LGOberean

    LGOberean Doctor of Teleocity

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    f4l, that was my understanding as well, a triode is a tube. As for the failure rate of the Nutube as compared to a traditional preamp tube like a 12AX7, I have no information on that. It's an unknown factor, to me, at least, for the moment. Obviously I wasn't concerned enough about this to keep from pulling the trigger. If over the next year or two, if the Nutube in the Cambridge50 needs replacing every 6 months (using the possible scenario you posited), then I will consider the technology and the amp a disappointment. But since we're talking $300, I won't loose too much sleep over it. I'll chalk it up to experience, and keep on using my Pathfinder 15Rs. And maybe buy a Peavey Bandit or Studio Pro. :twisted:


    You've both expressed well some of the same sentiments I feel about this. From what I've heard in videos of MV50 ACs and the Cambridge50, and from my own experiences test driving the Mini Super Beetle (which I've done now 4-5 times), the AC tones in these new Vox amp offerings are good. Not surprising that Vox would know how to voice/model an amp to sound like one of their amps. After playing through/gigging with Vox Pathfinder 15Rs for the last 7 years, that is the most important sound to me. A close second to that was Vox' "Boutique" voicing. They've been doing that one for years (ToneLab, Valvetronix), and I like it. (Is it a dead ringer for a Dumble amp? Don't know, don't care.) I like what I've heard in dem/review vids thus far of the Boutique voicings on the Cambridge50, and I have no reason to believe that I won't like it in this amp as well.

    So I expect to like the AC30, AC30TB, Boutque CL and Boutque OD voicings on the Cambridge50. I'm hopeful about the Deluxe CL and the Brit1959 as well, but honestly I'll probably mostly use the Vox and "Dumble" voicings, and probably never use the higher gain amp models. I can get along with two effects at a time just fine, and just 8 effects is plenty for me. I've already got the Vox VFS2, so being able to go from manual/panel mode to a created User preset and back again via the click of footswitch button will work for me as well. And throw in a "Line" voicing for acoustic/electric, power scaling for anything from bedroom volume levels to rehearsing to gigging, an on-board tuner, AUX In and headphone out, and I just can't see me not liking this thing.
     
  10. fender4life

    fender4life Friend of Leo's

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    I saw the GC's near me all have them in stock. Tempted to go check one out but not decided whether to. I did notice something kinda odd. The amp has an external power supply, a 19v wall wart instead of internal. Not sure how that would affect the output but i would think it would be hard to get 50 clean loud watts from 19v. But we'll see. Anxious to hear what u think of it. Also note that the footswitch is not included so it's extra $.
     
  11. LGOberean

    LGOberean Doctor of Teleocity

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    As I've said, "I've already got the Vox VFS2," which is their 2-button footswitch, so no extra expense for me. If I find I really take to creating and using preset User programs, then I may consider ponying up for the Vox 5-button footswitch, the VFS5. But I expect that two buttons accessing two user programs will be plenty for me.

    Oh, and speaking of expense, GC had a 20% off coupon. I didn't know about it, but the young man waiting on me knows me by name, and just voluntarily applied it to my order/purchase. So with tax, out the door it cost me $303.09.
     
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  12. fender4life

    fender4life Friend of Leo's

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    Wait....these are $300, right? I mean, thats what i saw them for at GC with free shipping. So 20% off would make it $240 and even if tax were 10% thats 24 bucks. So $240+$24=$264. Or am i missing something? (probably am but i can't figure out what)
     
  13. Bristlehound

    Bristlehound Friend of Leo's

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    [​IMG]
     
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  14. LGOberean

    LGOberean Doctor of Teleocity

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    You're right, the math doesn't work out. I never claimed to be no mathumatishun. :oops: I ordered it through the local GC, and like I said, I didn't even know about the coupon. The sales guy, Jason, just applied it and then mentioned it offhandedly. I thought he said 20% off, but I'm probably mistaken about the discount rate. Either way, it's like I got it for the going rate plus $3.09 in tax, or shipping, however you want to look at it. Either way, I'm happy.
     
  15. fender4life

    fender4life Friend of Leo's

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    I always wait till i see 15% discount deal on anything over i think it's $99, then i buy. Thats what i did with the GTX preorder and got it for $425 b4 tax. I plan to order one of the new epiphones but won't buy till they have it in stock and i see the 15% off on the site. They never go very long b4 they have that deal. Maybe a couple weeks at the most it seems.
     
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  16. Stratguy70

    Stratguy70 TDPRI Member

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    Congrats on your new amp coming, I hope you like it.
    I know back years ago I really enjoyed the ADvt30, and I think they have come a long way since then.
     
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  17. LGOberean

    LGOberean Doctor of Teleocity

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    When I checked my email this evening, I found a message from GC confirming my purchase, and the printed info solved the mystery of discount discrepancy we talk about here earlier. Apparently, Jason said $20 discount, but I misheard it as 20% discount. So, $299.99 - $20 = $279.99 + $23.10 tax = $303.09.
     
  18. black_doug

    black_doug Friend of Leo's

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    I bought a Vox Valvetronix when they first came out. Returned it the next day.

    So I'm sceptical but willing to have my mind changed. Looking forward to your review.

    I do have a Pathfinder 15R and gig with it monthly.
     
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  19. LGOberean

    LGOberean Doctor of Teleocity

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    Well, I'm not in it to change anyone's mind. At this point, I just hope that this purchase works out. Since I couldn't find one to test drive first, I went the route of ordering from GC so I can return it, if need be. I pulled the trigger on this yesterday, so I guess you could say I took a leap. :rolleyes:

    I will be reviewing it, and if I can get my wife's help, I'll do video reviews. And if it impresses me, I will be starting a Cambridge50 Owners club thread over in the Amp Owners Clubs section.
     
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  20. fender4life

    fender4life Friend of Leo's

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    I just got back from GC where i tried the cambridge 50. This will sound like a negative review but keep in mind couldn't turn it up for more then a few seconds here and there and second, it was just a store demo which in most cases ain't gonna tell you a lot. But the GTX100 i have on order was just extended in it's delivery date to 3 more weeks probably due to the corona virus, and i would almost bet it won't even make it by the new date if thats the case. So i thought why not try the vox and if it seemed like it was worth a trial period cancel the GTX order and take one home for the 45 days. Anyways, my first impression was this is a bedroom amp, not something i think i could use with a band, at least not in most cases. It's very small and sounded small to me. I think that very small light cabinet is just too small for stage use and like i said earlier it runs off an external 19 volt wall wart so it doesn't seem made for louder volumes. My GT is much much louder and bigger sounding. Tone wise i liked some of the sounds but felt they just sounded small due to the size and power. At bedroom volumes it's a lot better than when you start turning it up. The feel to me wasn't any more tube like than my GT so i think the nutube thing may be more of a marketing thing. In fact, the GT has more squish in the feel. Also, maybe i just missed it but it seemed like there was no way to adjust the amount of delay or reverb.

    Again, just a demo so i really can't judge it very well but for one thing....that smallness in the sound. It's just more a practice amp than a gigable one. Thats the one thing that was apparent w/o a lot of time on it or taking it home. The sounds seem pretty good tho nothing extraordinary and if u use it as a practice amp i'd say it's pretty good and with time spent at home i probably would have gotten even better sounds. But i didn't get the impression it was near enough for my needs. Maybe mic'd it would be ok but i hate the sound of micing amps. Anyways, not for me so the wait for the GTX will just go on and on and on and....
     
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