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FDP Forum / Fender Amps: 1985 - Current / DRRI vs SRRI

Next 20 Messages  

United States

Nov 14th, 2016 12:29 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Hello, I'm an apartment player and currently own a 65 DRRI. I bought this new in 2015 and have struggled with it pretty endearingly and am just about ready to trade it in. My thoughts are, I still want the blackface sound but I want more headroom, and a more clear bottom end. I'm thinking the 65 SRRI will fill that bill. For whatever reason my deluxe is kind of finicky and while it sounds good, I find it difficult to dial in. Mine has a bright switch installed and I find you sacrifice sparkle when disengaged, and and when engaged the tone becomes somewhat shrill and not as nice to play single note lines. In other words there's an eq imbalance that you either get one side of the fence or the other, very difficult to find a happy medium.

Any thoughts?

Contributing Member

Willie Nelson

Mandela Fitzgerald
Nov 14th, 2016 12:55 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Something must be out of whack with your DR because in an apartment, that amp should get up to window-breaking volume levels before it starts to distort.

I would have the amp checked out before giving up on it.

Have you considered the Princeton Reverb? Slightly smaller and lighter, and still huge volume. Totally giggable too.


United States

Nov 14th, 2016 01:48 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

It works fine Peegoo, it's just an EQ thing. It's functioning fine, it just has a quality that's dirty and bright at the same time, pisses me off. It's plenty loud, I'm just looking for a slightly different tone.

(This message was last edited by NHILL1 at 04:08 PM, Nov 14th, 2016)

Contributing Member

Willie Nelson

Mandela Fitzgerald
Nov 14th, 2016 01:57 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Try a softer tube in the V1 position. Something with less gain.

It can often soften the top end and increase clean headroom before distortion.


United States

Nov 14th, 2016 02:14 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I've tried every tube change under the sun, the amp does what it does. It's at it's best as far as I'm concerned right now, and it still isn't what I want. I think it's just my ears man, they're telling me it's dirty no matter what I do. It's clean up to 4, but it's how the bass end is represented is what bothers me. The bright switch cleans it up, at the cost of the amp sounding brittle which I don't like. Sooo yeah, that's whats up lol.

I'm just sick of the love/hate relationship. My blues jr is my baby, always sounds good, the frequencies sit right where they're supposed to. The deluxe reverb is like an bad girlfriend, sometimes it's good other times most time's it's a headache. Best way I can put it.


United States

Nov 14th, 2016 03:24 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Well either way I bit the bullet and offered $730 for a 2001 65 SRRI. If the guy accepts than I'll get the chance to put my amp head to head and pick from there. If not, I may buy one new and finance it out. Either way, I think I'm correct in what my ears are hearing. I just want a cleaner represented bottom end, and I think at the end of the day the super will get me there. Also, I like the idea of being able to compete with a 4x12, as right now the deluxe kind of gets buried when playing with my dad (when we do).

Contributing Member

South Florida

Nov 14th, 2016 03:34 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I have the DRRI and don't feel the same way about the tone.

But that's personal thing I admit. The good news is that the SRRI is a great amp.



Why do I keep fixing things that work?
Nov 14th, 2016 04:32 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Love the Super Reverb but it's a beast to carry around. For that kind of money, I would be more tempted to get the 4X10 Hot Rod DeVille III. 60 watts of power and an excellent blues rock amp. And has an effects loop to run your pedals into.
Fender has given this amp some revamping to the distortion circuit and sounds really decent. So, for about $500 less, your still getting tube goodness in a 4X10 configuration and a lot less tube issues, if you aren't tech savvy!
Have seen many of these grace the stage and sound tasty!
Think Los Lonely Boys and you'll know the sound. Sweet!

(This message was last edited by Cal-Woody at 06:33 PM, Nov 14th, 2016)


United States

Nov 14th, 2016 04:49 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I personally found the hot-rod series unbearably loud, even at like 1.5 on the volume knob. The reissue amps tend to be more linear with the volume knob.

Either way I may end up buying used, and if I do then it'll be a direct swap in terms of cost for my DRRI. So I won't be out of pocket a dime, and potentially I'll have a smart investment.

Also, I'm only 24, so lugging crap around isn't really an issue. Likewise, my amp hasn't left the apartment for playing purposes in months. It's just there to do it's thing.

Either way though, I have a blues jr that fits my needs. The blackface amp is just an alternative and a different sound. I'd just like the blackface because the cleans are so immaculate.


United States

Nov 15th, 2016 01:22 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Also Larry, I agree in it's just personal, and likewise I really do like the DRRI. I really can't say there's anything defective or wrong with the amp, I've put alot of effort and time into experimenting with it. I think the 1x12 configuration and 6v6 tubes just make the amp darker and more bass accentuated.

At any rate, I took the plunge on the SRRI. At the end of the day I really can't compare the two unless I have them in person. I decided to buy used SRRI that's all but brand new. I'm really going out on a limb and giving this a shot, I hope I'm right. If I am then I should have an easy swap financially speaking with the Deluxe. If not the worst I have to do is re-sell the amp.

Here's a link to the amp

Super Reverb Link

Contributing Member


too many guitars and not enough hands
Nov 15th, 2016 02:12 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

it could be the speaker, look for a weber cali to try out.


United States

Nov 15th, 2016 02:29 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I already decided on the SRRI LeftRightOut. Also I've tried about 7 speakers, the C12K is the right fit, sparkle and bass for days. Again the DRRI is a stupid good amp, I think I just want something different. I figure if I can't turn it up to 6, I might as well get an amp with a fatter clean sound. The SRRI with 4x10 in my mind should push more air and have a thicker clean sound at the same volumes as the DRRI.

I say that also because every time I play next to a 4x12 my amp just gets burried. I think a 4x10 would be closer in air movement and "fullness" that a 4x12 has, while still having the fender sound.


usa metro detroit

Nov 16th, 2016 04:18 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I'm kinda with Cal-Woody on going HRDeville 4x10 over a SRRI. I personnaly like the sounds of HRDs and they are work horses when you get a good one. But... Clean wise, HRD's are more dirty or tweed'ish than both the DRRI and the SRRI... and that's what sets them apart from the Black Face line.

Why you're looking at a SRRI while living in an apartment is beyond me. Personnaly, giving your living space and your like of Black Faced cleans.... I'd be looking at the Princeton


United States

Nov 16th, 2016 12:02 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Pcalu, if a SRRI is a stove top, a deville is hell fire. I've played them before and they do not go quite. The blackface lines can be quite, at 2-3 on the volume knob they're very playable in apartments, given I play lightly.

That said I wanted a cleaner clean then my deluxe reverb, as well I wanted to be able to stand against a 4x12 without sounding small. Likewise I only expect to play clean on the super reverb, just like my deluxe reverb. I have a blues jr for dirty tones at reasonable volumes and it excels in that area. I just like clean sounds to be big and fat, the dirts fine with a smaller amp as far as I'm concerned.


usa metro detroit

Nov 16th, 2016 04:06 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I have a HRD III with its audio volume pot (instead of a linear type that came before) is totally ujustable at lower volumes.. that was one of the improvements to the III. With most of the amps we have talked about one isn't really going to get to hear what they really sound like turned down to 1.

My favorite Fender amp... which retired my old faithfull 1972 Twin Reverb! is a ML HRDeville " outstanding amp! Twin meets Bassman!" There is a reason you don't see those on the resale lists) Yet... Next to the HRD line, the Super Reverb is my next favorite Fender amp. For what its worth I've talked to several hard core Super Reverb guys in the last year who play both the vintage (pre-72 stuff) and the RI... they all say the RI sounds excatly like or really close to their vintage Super Reverbs ... so ya can't go wrong with the RI.

Also in the early mid 90's Fender made the "Super" (Not a super reverb.. but looked like it. It was 70 watts and had a push pull master volume for gain. Not a bad amp, clean wise very close to a Super Reverb


(This message was last edited by pcalu at 06:10 PM, Nov 16th, 2016)


United States

Nov 17th, 2016 08:16 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I'm suprised you like the HRD series better than the reissue 65's, I've always found the Hot Rod's to be kind of boring by comparison.

And yeah I'm not a vintage stickler, though I'm a vintage lover tonally speaking. I think fender produces some amazing guitars and amps now days, and I'd much prefer the peace of mind of modern equipment. I don't see the "lust" quality to vintage gear, the reissue stuff fender makes is top notch.


usa metro detroit

Nov 17th, 2016 05:54 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I like the Michael Landau Hot Rod Deville, IMO it's the best of the line. I played a 1972 Twin Reverb for years and years (Country and Blues) and the ML HRDeville is simply the better amp. (hands down!) Premier Guitar did an article on the amp, where they put a 1967 (pre CBS) Twin up against the ML HRDeville & came to the same conclusion I did. I bought a regular HRDeluxe thinking it was just going to be a smaller version of the ML HRDeville.. It's not. (It's different... kinda Tweed'ish) Yet after putting some Eminence Texas Heat's in and some Genalex gold tubes in... It sounds really good. (even the drive is usable) The clean is GREAT.

Of course I have a serious pedal rig ($2k+ on the floor)

I like something about the Hot Rods in how they sound... (maybe more modern????) than traditional black face amps. (I like Black face amps too)

So far both amps have been work horses. Solid very solid. I gig both hard...

I have had vintage & still do (my 1972 twin and a 69 Deluxe Reverb.. both great) I've had vintage Marshalls, Parks...I'm 50 You ask anyone my age that plays and gigs that doesn't have skin in the vintage game (i.e. selling them or collecting them) and they will tell you the reissue amps sound just as good as the old ones, they just sound "newer" that's all ...

Alot of guys gig Hot Rods in my neck of the woods, that's why I tried the ML HRDeville. When I put my HRD III up against my 69 DR (Clean vs Clean)it just sounds more tweedish not any worse or better...

I used to be in CNC repair ala the electronics side.. To anyone outside of guitar amp repair world.... PCB's and Turret boards are all the same.. Comparing vintage to RI's The schematics are the same, The componet values are the same.. Way to much BS is pushed upon the uneducated.. Quoting nominal difference that really don't mean squat to the amps performace or longevity.

As somone who has played and own both vintage and PCB amps, I have NO calms about buying a modern RI's.


United States

Nov 17th, 2016 10:50 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Yeah maybe that's one difference. I own 3 pedals, and really only use my tube screamer with consistency. I have a ds-1 and MXR envelope filter that are more gimmicks than something I really find usable. Point being I typically just run straight into the amp, almost never using pedals.

Interesting on the "tweedish" sound of your hot rod, maybe my ears are just wired differntly. Also, I've never played a "real" tweed amp. Just the hot rod series tweed covered amps so I really don't know how they sound. I do know I heard lots of good things about the Micahel Landau amp before.

Also, those celestion v-type speakers that come with the Michael Landau amp are AWSOME! I played a vox ac15 before with a v-type celestion, it was one of the most amazing sounds I've ever heard. I sounded really fender-y, but wish vox ovedrive. I'm happy with my gear today, but man I would've taken that amp home in a heartbeat if I had the chance.


United States

Nov 26th, 2016 12:44 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Okay, well I got the SRRI in today so I can finally update my findings.

Okay, so I think I've been curve balled a bit. The SRRI is tonally similar to the DRRI, but the DRRI is actually noticeably sweeter sounding, with more drive. The SRRI is WAAYYY louder and a bit poky in the ear drum, and is reallllllyyyy clean. It doesn't have the "compression" effect the DRRI does.

That said, I have both in my possession and I get to pick which one I want. I'm leaning heavily toward the SRRI because it solves my main bent, I can hear the damn thing. The DRRI, while fabulous, can be kind of "small" sounding at low volumes, and really gets swallowed by 4x12's or larger amps. I think the SRRI would hold it's own a little better, and at least contest bigger amps. Likewise I find with the bright switch and additional mid-control I can contour the amp and get it to still sound sweet.

Edit: Conundrum! Awww man crap I didn't expect this! They do different things, but neither is better! Sh*t!!!!!!!

The DRRI is fundamentally sweeter, darker, and more earthy. The SRRI is fundamentally more cutting, percussive and loud. I really didn't expect this, but I really don't want to sell either! The DRRI has long since been my baby, but now the SRRI doesn't exactly replace it like I thought. The DRRI still does it's thing, being more jazz suited, more earthy, and overall darker.

NNNNOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!.....Results to be determined.

(This message was last edited by NHILL1 at 04:29 PM, Nov 26th, 2016)


usa metro detroit

Nov 26th, 2016 02:39 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Nice... Keep me informed. I'll be interested in your long term veiws on the SRRI... (exspecially when your comparing it to the Deluxe)

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FDP Forum / Fender Amps: 1985 - Current / DRRI vs SRRI

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