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FDP Forum / Fender Amps: Vintage (before 1985) / The Princeton Reverb II (Rivera era PRII) Conclave

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Iversen
Contributing Member
***

Denmark

Jul 27th, 2013 04:42 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Happy 100th post anniversary everyone.

Once, just once, did I run my favorite strat straight into a PRII and cranked both master and volume to 10. It was crazy loud and not advisable if you want people to hear you play ever again. I couldn't tell whether the power stage overdrive was warm or smooth, my ears hurt and my brain was preoccupied processing why oh why would my fingers do this to the rest of me.

When I sometimes practice in other people's rehearsal rooms and they have the walls covered with 100 watt Marshall stacks I always shake my head in disbelief and wonder just how and why...

Johnny Alien

Harrisburg, PA

Jan 16th, 2014 08:10 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Just picked one of these up used and have a tube question. The preamp tubes have no manufacturer info they just say "Made in China". Are these original and if so who made them? I know the power tubes were swapped as they are JJ's.

littleuch
Contributing Member
**********
*

Ocala, Fla

Jan 16th, 2014 09:15 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

My guess is that the seller had good quality tubes in there and found the nastiest throw aways before selling it and took the good ones.

I'm no expert but I'm confident the original tubes were not made in China. Toss 'em and get something, anything better.

Stratopastor

Stockton-on-Tees

all your tone are belong to us
Jan 16th, 2014 03:04 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

hi Johnny, welcome...

Original preamp tubes had a red Fender logo on the glass. I think they were made in Russia, same place EH and Groove Tubes and therefore Fender get theirs today. IIRC original 6V6s had the Fender logo in white.

Littleuch is right, except I'd keep the Chinese tubes for spares unless I had others. JJ 6V6s have a reputation for standing apart tonally from other brands but I've never tried them.

Johnny Alien

Harrisburg, PA

Jan 16th, 2014 05:13 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Thanks guys! I think I will keep the JJ's in there for now. Any suggestions for tubes in the preamp slots? Mine dates to 1982. I actually did a search for the serial number and found that at one time it was on consignment (and sold) by Elderly. It looks like in the photo it had the optional EV speaker or at least an EV replacement. By the time it got to me it has what I believe to be an Eminence speaker. The code on it is 12731 which a google search seems to point to an Eminence of some sort. The dating system matching what they would use and appears to be from 1986. I would think that maybe the person pillaged the speaker as well as the tubes but I am not sure that the EV would be any better than this as it sounds pretty good and I don't know if the EV is sought after on the used market.

Here is the Elderly ad

littleuch
Contributing Member
**********
*

Ocala, Fla

Jan 18th, 2014 07:10 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I like JJ and Tung Sol RI for new production pre amp tubes. The best NOS tubes I've had in my PRII were Tungsram.

(This message was last edited by littleuch at 09:44 AM, Jan 18th, 2014)

guitarcapo

U.S.A.

Jan 20th, 2014 08:26 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I own a pair of Concert II Fenders. Really nice amps. They're great bass amps as well.

Johnny Alien

Harrisburg, PA

Jan 20th, 2014 03:39 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

How much do the original footswitchs sell for these days. I have zero need for mine and if I hang onto it I will 100% for sure lose it. That is how I roll it seems. I figured I would sell it to someone that really needs it.

littleuch
Contributing Member
**********
*

Ocala, Fla

Jan 20th, 2014 05:45 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I believe Stratopastor has a schematic on his site for building a foot switch. I'm told the amp sounds different with it even when its not engaged. Probably discussed further back in this thread. I never had one and like the amp just fine as is.

Stratopastor

Stockton-on-Tees

all your tone are belong to us
Jan 23rd, 2014 04:47 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Johnny, I don't know what the original f/s sells for but if you're going to unload yours, make sure you list all the amps it works with;

Princeton Reverb II
Super Champ
Concert (= Rivera-era Concert "II")
Twin Reverb II
Deluxe Reverb II
Fender 75
Fender 140

... but not the Fender 30, just in case anyone asks.

littleuch
Contributing Member
**********
*

Ocala, Fla

Jan 24th, 2014 07:15 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I must have misread Johnny's post, thinking he needed a foot switch. So an actual PRII owner who has the original f/s...I heard about that but thought they were only rumors, lol.

Stratopastor

Stockton-on-Tees

all your tone are belong to us
Jan 24th, 2014 05:39 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I've just added a modification to the tone mods page of the website... actually there are 3 sent in by a kind PRII owner but the first of the 3 is a new one on me, and I will probably try it next time I go in there.

Linky

Rollingstone

United States

Dan
Feb 6th, 2014 04:42 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I just picked up a Fender Princeton Reverb II from a guy earlier this week. I think he said he bought it in '92 used and it has all stock parts and has never been modded (including the original power and preamp tubes!). I'll probably swap out the speaker at some point (I've got a bunch to try or could buy a new one) but can't get over the fact that he never retubed it. Surprisingly it sounds very good but wasn't as loud as I thought it would be so they are probably pretty weak at this point.

I own a DRRI and have set the bias on that with a bias probe, multimeter, and a screwdriver using the tube values an amp tech gave me but since this is a fixed bias amp its not that simple. Has anyone installed the adjustable bias mod from Torres Engineering and is it worth it? I've read that doing this could reduce the volume a little but its nice to be able to swap out tubes without having to take it to a tech.

(This message was last edited by Rollingstone at 06:47 PM, Feb 6th, 2014)

Rollingstone

United States

Dan
Feb 6th, 2014 04:46 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I'll probably need to have a cap job done too since the original caps are in there for sure. Assuming its a 1984 built amp (or somewhere in that ballpark) the caps are 30 years old at this point!

The only thing I noticed was that it was a little scratchy sounding when I was messing with the midrange knob especially when I pulled it for the mid boost (it could be a preamp tube thing or a dusty pot on the knob or something).

(This message was last edited by Rollingstone at 06:51 PM, Feb 6th, 2014)

Stratopastor

Stockton-on-Tees

all your tone are belong to us
Feb 7th, 2014 04:07 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Hey Rollingstone

I don't understand why fitting adjustable bias should make the amp quieter...

There's an adjustable-bias mod drawn on the modifications page of the PRII website.

By the way it's "fixed bias" even after you fit a pot-adjuster because the setting of the pot is still "fixing" the bias in place, in the same way that the 2 resistors were doing before.

Rollingstone

United States

Dan
Feb 8th, 2014 01:41 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I read that somewhere on one of the tech articles about fixed bias verses adjustable bias that I found thru google. The article was pretty detailed and thorough and the guy seemed to know what he was talking about (probably an amp tech/electronics guy). Of course I don't claim to be an expert and may have misunderstood what he was saying (it is a confusing topic for a non tech person) and everything you read on the internet is true... lol

(This message was last edited by Rollingstone at 03:43 PM, Feb 8th, 2014)

Stratopastor

Stockton-on-Tees

all your tone are belong to us
Feb 12th, 2014 03:52 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

The alternative would be cathode bias, which isn't fixed - the actual amount of bias voltage is kind-of self-adjusting in an on-the-moment, dynamic fashion depending on playing conditions.

With fixed bias, the bias voltage doesn't fluctuate like that in use - it's fixed at one value by a couple of resistors acting as a potential divider. To adjust the bias, you monkey with the values of those resistors, and that's easier if they're built into a rotary control. But once you're happy with the bias and start playing.... it's fixed.

Dunno if this helps, but, as you say, since it's on the internet, it must be true. :-)

Stratopastor

Stockton-on-Tees

all your tone are belong to us
Feb 21st, 2014 10:00 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

check this out...

PRII in beautiful cab

Stratopastor

Stockton-on-Tees

all your tone are belong to us
Feb 22nd, 2014 05:44 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I've just received sketches (and good reports in use) from a DRII user for a triode/pentode switch (the DRII uses the same power stage). I'll add it to the 'site soon.

littleuch
Contributing Member
**********
*

Ocala, Fla

Feb 22nd, 2014 07:05 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Wow that one in the link sure is purdy. Lots of mods.

I miss my PRII :-( I still have it but condo living has silenced it for now.

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FDP Forum / Fender Amps: Vintage (before 1985) / The Princeton Reverb II (Rivera era PRII) Conclave




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