Anyone use a tube pre/drive with a solid state?

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mbene085
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Re: Anyone use a tube pre/drive with a solid state?

Post by mbene085 » Wed Sep 30, 2020 10:24 am

fuzzjunkie wrote:
Wed Sep 30, 2020 9:21 am
TLDR: I wonder if you could do a mini version of this? Instead of using a pedal, what about the Z-Vex mini tube amp, or there are other 1-5 watt choices, and putting it in front of a SS amp? That way you get the tube, and the transformer to color the sound, while still having a clean tone when it’s out of the signal path? You would probably need a A/B box and possibly a speaker load box to make it work though.
Wasn't that what the Fender Greta was meant to be? It used a 12AT7 as a power tube to drive its own tiny speaker or an external cab if desired, and had a line out.

I've never looked too deep into it, but that kinda seemed to be its thing.

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Re: Anyone use a tube pre/drive with a solid state?

Post by cestlamort » Wed Sep 30, 2020 11:10 am

fuzzjunkie wrote:
Wed Sep 30, 2020 9:21 am

Read more if you want to: I used to have one of those Seymour Duncan convertible amps endorsed by Jeff Beck. It was marketed as the perfect recording amp.

It’s a very nice 100 watt combo amp. 12” speaker with spring reverb. It had a Variac style power reducing control that could go from 5-100 watts. There were 2 preamp channels with their own volume and tone controls and you could switch the power amp section from triode to pentode. What really made it versatile was the preamp sections each had 2 replaceable tube or solid state modules. I think there were 3 tube versions : clean, crunch, and hi-gain, and 2 solid state, and you could put them in any combination. That was what made it a good studio amp.

The standard setup was basically a Fender Channel and a Mesa Boogie style hot rod Fender Channel. I got a decent clean/dirty Vox sound out of the setup I used until I finally got an AC-30 and sold it to finance a Fender Bassman.

It could be set up to do a Roland/Marshall configuration too. They were expensive amps back around 1990, but I think they go for @ $500 as an almost vintage amp these days.
These always seemed really interesting, but would theoretically lock you in to a specific ecosystem of SD modules. Pair this with one of the Korg PMX multi effects and an Intellivision and you can take on the world.

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Re: Anyone use a tube pre/drive with a solid state?

Post by jorri » Wed Sep 30, 2020 12:58 pm

Sounds like a promising way to go actually.

So there is that Zvex, but also heard of the Orange terror stamp (amp in a pedal but is SS power amp, but has fx loop). I am sure there are quite a few, and is possible to give in and get a lightweight small 110 cab but i did think about the following anyway:

From send out into return in on the clean amp. The switching could get convoluted but I am sure could be wrangled out.
Am slightly confusing myself with how to put together whilst being bypassable, and taking the SS pre out of it whilst still having front end effects. Well, i could probably find an effects-bypass a/b if such thing existed, and could definitely build it if not as i have done inside pedals to switch between two separate effects. Essentially there would be connection to input and send, simply exchanging what is in that part of signal path.
Could even go more complex and end up with different placement of each amp, but i will likely slow down there!
Some kind of dual bypass box under one switch would do it probably.

Or maybe two serial preamps just sounds cool?

Fx loops and a/bing amps = a definite problem. I wont be using the STEREO loop thats for sure...

For the full tube idea: yep is something i am unsure about. If you have a switch going into one speaker? Well I would have to research whether that causes big pops or blown fuses for the momentary lack of load. There are a lot of watts to go through a standard switch.

Finally : i will check out the Seymour for sure. But perhaps if one could dismantle the power section to run SS or tube into a tube power-amp that could be ideal. Music Man style? Entertaining ideas here.

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