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FDP Forum / Amp Mods, Repairs, and Projects / New C12K Break In Time? DRRI


United States

Oct 18th, 2016 12:22 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I purchased a new C12K speaker for my DRRI as the C12K I already had, had horrible cone cry. The speaker sounded great, but at in-determinable intervals it would cone cry and irritate every fiber of my being.

That said, the new C12K is in there...and I'm a bit impatient with it. The bottom end is really flubby, and it feels like the top end doesn't shine through the way the old one did.

My question, is this a symptom of break in time? I've long struggled with this amp, but I really liked the sound of the previous speaker. The new one just seems to really want to compress and distort early, and makes the amp feel squashed and not open enough. Any thoughts?

(P.S. - the amp originally came with a C12K I sold, and re-purchased maybe 5 separate occasions, and I also purchased about 7 other speakers before finally coming to the conclusion the C12K was the best fit)

Contributing Member

American Patriot

I'm on guard these days.
Oct 18th, 2016 01:19 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I've never tried a C12K but with a Deluxe Reverb it is kind of like putting the biggest, baddest tires you can find for your Chevette that you never drive over 40 mph.

For a new speaker, you are just going to have to play it a long time before the speaker settles down, if it settles down at all. Just my opinion.


United States

Oct 18th, 2016 01:42 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Well I had the exact same speaker before and it was great, for some reason, maybe because the speaker is new, it seems to be wooly and have crappy treble response. I think it's the break-in time, or that's at least what I'm hoping. If it doesn't shape up I'll just sell the amp. I have a blues jr that almost does the exact same thing, it's just not as bass heavy, which works for me personally. The deluxe is a one trick pony at best, and it doesn't even do it well.


United States

Oct 19th, 2016 01:15 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Any other thoughts on this? I think I've come to the conclusion, as I've long fought the battle with this amp, is that it just is a flabby amp, nothing wrong with it, it's just it's sound.

I have a blues jr that absolutely kills, great clean and dirty sounds at low volume, perfect for me. The deluxe no matter what I do sound thin and flubby, never really achieving much more than an acceptable clean tone. So I'm going to sit on it, but I think in time I'll pass this amp on and move on to other things. I've spent countless dollars modding, fixing, replacing tubes, etc, but the amp just won't budge. The louder it get, the dirtier the bottom end gets, and it just doesn't do what I want it to do.

I still like the amp, and I'll miss the clean tone if I let it go, but at the end of the day I think what I would ultimately want is a super reverb if anything. It seems to have more headroom while still doing the blackface sound. I'll look into that someday.

Contributing Member

Eat. Sleep. Guitar.

Oct 19th, 2016 01:27 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

If your amp is flabby sounding, re-tube it.

Also a good idea to check the power supply filter cap section for proper spec because drifted filter caps can make an amp lose punch. It can sound flabby and anemic.

Even if the amp is fairly new, caps do sometimes go south before they're due.


United States

Oct 19th, 2016 01:35 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Hi Peegoo, I had the amp re-capped by an amp tech, and again I think it's more the nature of the amp. The bass isn't literally "flabbing", it's just a bass heavy and oriented amp without alot of mid-range. The amp has limited headroom so it doesn't have any means to compensate for the heavy bass load, so it just sounds kind of murky, to me at least. The tubes as well are brand new JJ's, maybe a month old.

I don't know man, I think it just is what it is. The speaker is brand spanking new which I'm almost certain is apart of the reason it's sounding so strange right now, kind of funky bottom end and not enough top end, so well see how it pans out. I listed it on reverb so if I get a good enough offer I'll let it go.


United States

Oct 20th, 2016 11:12 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I may have figured out an issue, besides the fact I think the speaker still needs time to break in. I have been biasing my amp for awhile, tinkering mostly trying to find something I liked because I thought I was biasing it correctly at 23ma. Turns out it took a minute or two for the tubes to equalize where the bias reading would level out, but I was just biasing it based on the first couple of seconds I had the amp on. I gave it about 2-3 minutes, with one tube biased 23 and the other initially reading 25 ma, but leveled out to matching 23 ma on each tube after about a minute, so I guess the amp needed time to level out for an accurate reading? Not really sure, but either way I MUCH prefer the sound of the amp now, I think it was slightly under-biased before, which made the reverb sound really good but other than that the tone always seemed lacking. I think I found a bit of that missing link with the correcting the bias, not only chords but single note-lines and them feeling more heafty and full, as well as there's a considerable amount of sparkle. Before the sound felt kind of dark and thin and it appears the small biasing gap (I biased at 23 ma but another tube was at 21-22 ma, so the amp "leveled out to being 21-22 instead of 23). So, if I'm right, and the sound seems to confirm what I'm thinking, the amp is at a better place than it was previously. I still think the speaker needs time to break in, but I don't think it's the primary suspect so to speak. Anyways, I hope I'm right, and if nothing else I feel slightly more settled knowing there's hope. If anyone with a bit more experience in biasing/working on amps could tell me if this is normal I'd appreciate it. For reference the amps voltage is 421 with JJ 6v6's, so 23 ma is the max dissipation, I just hope my methods of biasing are on point. That being, I turn all knobs totally to 1, put the amp on standby with a bias probe hooked up, turn on amp and wait for tubes to warm up, maybe 15-30 seconds, turn standby off, take the reading, set to 23 ma, wait for tubes to settle (which I have no godly understanding why they do that in my amp but they do) then if they both read 23 ma I turn the amp off and put everything back together. Long winded but I want to make sure my steps are correct and there's no funny business going on. Really though, anyone who's really tech savvy who could confirm this I'd appreciate it, thanks.

Contributing Member

Delco, PA

"I'll take a simple C to G
Oct 21st, 2016 08:03 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

These amps love to run hot. It may eat up tubes, but my experience with the DRRI is the hotter the better.

FDP Forum / Amp Mods, Repairs, and Projects / New C12K Break In Time? DRRI

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