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FDP Forum / Fender Product Reviews / Fender Blues Junior Review

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Fantus

France

Dec 9th, 1999 01:19 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Hi !
I'm beginning with a little Fender amp I'm sure is going to be a great classic : the Fender Blues Junior.
I tested it with a vintage '62 strat and nothing else. (no effects pedal or else
At first sight, I told myself : "Quite big for 15 Watts !" and quite heavy too, but though it is an all-tube amp it is usuall and a proof of quality components. As I love simplicity, I just liked the 6 lonely tone pots and the fat switch. Volume (controls preamp gain), treble, bass, middle master & reverb.
Although I am a kind of violent blues player I began playing it clean (Master on 12, volume above 1), The sound was really warm, great and very bluesy. I love it. But I regret that tilt-back legs doesn't feature in this one.
Cranking up the volume control till 6 we've got what I call a sound ! Clean or light overdrive only by changing pick attack ! Yummy Oh thank you Fender !
Well I played it live in a bar without a PA equipement and set Master 12 and volume near 6 or twelve. That amp is truly a beast. The saturation was just as I like it : fat, earthquake-like, and what I really got the impression to play on something bigger than 15 watts !
One defect (but personnal taste :) there should be an extra speaker extension because as the Jr is little I just love to play him loud and the HP is a little bit sharp.
To conclude, the Blues jr is really nice. If you just like the sound of the old day's blues, it's for you. But it can be versatile in other situations, I play Country and Rock on it, no problem !
Hope you enjoy that review,
Fantus

PaulR

USA

Dec 10th, 1999 08:55 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I just picked up one of these and I wholeheartedly agree. Grins! :)

trane

Tokyo, Japan

Dec 14th, 1999 10:21 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Definitely the "most lusted after" on my list. Thanks for posting the review.


farmboy

usa

Dec 16th, 1999 06:24 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

If ya'll don't stop it I'm gonna have to have one of these.

Rudy

USA

Dec 17th, 1999 08:53 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I took my Roadhouse Strat down to the local strings and sticks to check me out a Blues Jr.

Plugged in and, well to quote Will Smith in "Independance Day" when he took off in the alien spacecraft, "I GOT TO GET ME ONE OF THESE."

I'm hoping Santa reads this forum. Hey, a new topic!

(This message was last edited by Rudy at 11:10 AM, May 5th, 2003)

Hakuna

USA

Dec 18th, 1999 06:01 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I picked up a Blues Jr about 6 weeks ago. I am still "tweaking" the knobs and seem to always find a new tone! I play a Tex-Mex Telecaster thru it. The neck humbucker really growls with the little Jr.!! What I like best about the amp is its ability to produce good sound at low volumes. I record in my home studio and prefer to "mic" the amp and record into computer/multitracker and I don't have the need to drive the neighbors crazy just to get the right sound/tone. For those of you that have not heard a Blues Jr. live, I offer this description of the distortion qualities:

Compared to a digital distortion amp, the Jr. has a completely different sound. If one can imagine clean sound as being a straight line, like this ----------, and then the distortion with a digital amp might look like this -_-_-_-_-_-. A Blues Jr might look like this ---_---_---_---_---.
In comparison verbally, the Blues Jr. "farts" while the digital amp "rips". hehehe...oh hell!, Just go listen to one!

Rally

usa

Dec 21st, 1999 09:02 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

My new Blues Jr. dosen't give me clean tones when playing chords. I've tried adjusting all the control settings but to no avail. It seems to always give some distortion. My 64 BF/PR gives me *beautiful* tone both when playing lead and rhythem. Does anyone else find this with their Blues Jr. ? Thanks

Chris Greene - FDP Host

USA

Dec 21st, 1999 09:05 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Rally, you should get clean at lower volume. Bring it back to the dealer.

CodeBlue

USA

Dec 21st, 1999 10:01 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Try Master on 12....and adjust volume to taste....I found my BJ very good with chords...as good as a 72 Bassman 50 and 2/12 cab. I had...not as loud of course but just as clean sounding....


deltaslim

Manila

Dec 22nd, 1999 05:52 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I had a Blues Jr. I couldn't get a clean tone loud enough for even a small club gig. But most of all, the distortion tone on it sounded "boxy" and too honky. I think the small cabinet had something to do with it. I sold it, and kept my Blues Deluxe.

I'm glad for the people who find this amp perfect for their needs and tastes. I lusted after this amp for months, and felt lucky to get a great tweed one even being so far away. But it just wasn't for me.

Dano

USA

Dec 23rd, 1999 08:38 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I have had my Blues Jr. for several years now and wouldn't part with it. I have no trouble with getting clean tones. In fact, I used it for several years in church with an acoustic guitar at low volumes and it sounded great. I sold an early 80's Super Champ that was always brittle and shrill and replaced it with the Blues Jr. The Blues Jr. is everything the Super Champ wasn't. I think the Blues Jr. is one of the next classics.

bluesmama

usa

Dec 26th, 1999 07:01 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I've also had my Blues Jr. for a couple of years, never had any problems. No trouble with clean tones, a great little tone machine. I agree with Dano, destined to be a Fender classic. I even thought of buying a second and running a stereo cord between the two...could be an interesting experiment!

Jon S.

USA

Dec 29th, 1999 06:06 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I'm beginning to sound like a broken record I guess [kids today: "Dad, what's a 'record'?"], but if you want more clean headroom out of a BJ, simply replace the stock 12AX7WA phase inverter with a 12AT7. $10 later, you're there.

Rudeboy

USA

Jan 2nd, 2000 09:04 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I love mine, had it for a few years now. I replaced the stock speaker with a Celestion V30 and it really improved the performance if ya can believe it. I've used it for rehearsals with a loud drummmer and I cut through with no problems. As far as pushin an extension cab, I pushed a 4X10 open back cab with mine and it was huge sounding. A great amp(one of the few new Fender amps I like) but I'll still take my old Pro Reverb over it.

Jimi D

Canada

Jan 2nd, 2000 03:48 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

My BJr's been sorely overlooked since I picked up my SFPrinceton Reverb a few months back, but I won't give it up... I love these amps - and my first Blues Jr. was my first introduction to what 'tube amp tone' was all about... Now I want to see how it'll sound running in parallel with the Princeton psuedo-stereo-style off my Whirlwind Selector in gig-type :-)

jimi d's many, many amps and such...

Blue Tex

West Texas

Jan 30th, 2000 08:21 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Just to echo what (almost) everyone else has said in this thread - the BJ is a great little amp. Lots of guts for a small 15 watt box. But, to be honest, I haven't been using mine much since I got ahold of a Princeton Reverb II this past summer. Lawd, ha' mercy!

GuitarHacker

USA

Jan 30th, 2000 11:24 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

IMHO, the Pro Junior is much better than the Blues Junior. All tube signal path -- none of that SS noisy reverb. No master volume!!! You can put a nice reverb unit in front of it if you want reverb and it takes well to pedals.

Teleted

USA

Feb 3rd, 2000 09:18 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I've gotta echo what Hacker just said about the Pro Jr. Best little sound monster out there.

TONESEEKER

US

Feb 6th, 2000 04:18 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I'm on my second Blues Jr.. I sold my first 2 years ago & have been hopping around to different amps ever since. Now I'm backs to the Blues jr. I've finally seen the light. It'll be perfect when I find the right Extension Cab. for it.

c150

USA

Feb 6th, 2000 09:26 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I tried the Blues Jr and the Pro Jr in the store last week. I wanted a smaller amp than my Twin Reverb to gig with. The Pro Jr sounded better that the Blues Jr when run flat out, but the Blues Jr did have a little more volume. I don't need reverb, and the fat switch only made a very small difference. Has anybody tried gigging with the Pro Jr. We don't play loud enough to require miking the amp. Does anybody think the Pro Jr is louder that a SFPR?
Bill D.

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FDP Forum / Fender Product Reviews / Fender Blues Junior Review




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