Fender Bassman

Discussion in 'Other Amps' started by ricksconnected, Jul 12, 2018.

  1. ricksconnected

    ricksconnected Well-Known Member

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    what do you guys think of these amps.
    I like the tone of them. from those with experience,
    what yr's range should I be looking for for best
    performance?
    50 watt or 100 watt?
    im looking for one you can actually find pretty regularly
    not the holy grail's that you find once in a life time and spend a fortune on.
    just a good solid performing bassman.
     
  2. AlvisX

    AlvisX Well-Known Member

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    "Bassman " is a term that encompasses a lotta amps
    I'll just start here because we're on a Marshall forum..... The best off-the-shelf Bassman tone wise ,IMO, is the EARLY 90's tweed reissue with the blue frame Eminence alnicos. It's my favorite rented backline amp . No, they're not handwired and nothing special ,construction-wise. They're just capable of gettin THE TONE ,that's why I like 'em. I would have one ,but I can build a cooler version out of a broke silverface.

    The 60's /70's Bassman heads went through a lotta circuit changes.
    Me personally ,I've never favored the blackface / silverface heads . They are good , well built . They're a great loud clean amp . Great for SRV, early Stones ,Kinks ,Blues ,Country,Soul whatever . They don't quite produce the crunch that I like, and Im not a pedal guy .......That's why I buy up broken silverfaces and "tweed" 'em. These are the amps I use most often on the road in the USA...to keep my old Marshalls outa the van

    There's probably a tweeded silverface or two in my 5th grade projects link
     
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2018
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  3. ampmadscientist

    ampmadscientist Well-Known Member

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    The tweed one, but what you are going to find also is that they are extremely noisy both in filament hum and power supply hum.
    It's not practical to buy a tweed amp because the price is out of sight. But you can build a clone or convert a piggy back head.

    More realistic is a black face 1963 or later.
    Silver face I would just avoid.

    40-50 watt is plenty...( I drop it to 18 watt)
    The power tubes were a bit different back then, and the plate voltage of some of those models (w/ ss rectifier) is overkill for a pair of 6L6/5881.
    It's going to run pretty hot at 500 volts B+.
    The ones with rectifier tubes will have lower voltage of course...
    Yes they are all hand wired, but made at a time when manufacturers didn't pay too much attention to noise.

    A good approach is to use a Classic tone power transformer which has reduced voltage taps. That will drop the plate volts from 500 to 400 in a piggy back head. (that's what I do to reduce the heat).

    The chassis: is much smaller than a Marshall, and more challenging to get a good layout.
     
  4. Garrett

    Garrett Well-Known Member

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    A guy I play with has a drip face that was converted to AB165.

    It's clean until cranked like a JTM but doesn't have the keer-rang that a Marshall does.

    But that Bassman takes pedals like a champ. AND, it has the most lush and beautifully warm and rounded 3D cleans I've ever heard. I love that amp.
     
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  5. GIBSON67

    GIBSON67 Well-Known Member

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    It depends on what you want out of your Bassman.

    More Marshally sounds would require a Reissue or a Tweed. Somewhat cleaner sounds would be the blackface, or Brownface.
    And really clean sounds would be the Silverface Bassman 50 or 100. I would avoid the Bassman 75 and the
    Bassman 135 unless you actually want one for playing bass.

    I personally really like the Silverface master volume Fenders because you can knock down the noisefloor by taking the master
    from 10 to 8 and using it like a NMV amp. I have a Super 6 Reverb and I play it thru my JCM800 quad with G12-80's. It's not only
    for my clean amp sounds, but also my bass amp. No real breakup, just smooth punchy tone!
     
  6. printer

    printer Member

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    The 59 reissue is the closest to Marshalls. The Blonds are next in the progression toward a clean amp, they are getting pricey as well as any of the amps Blackface on down. Going up you have the Silverfaces. Probably get these cheaper than most. This is where Fender was sold to CBS and the wiring was not the best so they threw capacitors in places to roll off the highs so the amps don't oscillate, the Blackfaces were wired better as Leo was particular in how his amps operated leaning towards a hifi sound. Not to say they can not sound good but it is going to get loud.



    Blackfaces are sought after more than the Sliver's and if I were to get an amp to mod I would leave these poor guys alone as they have their place in the musical spectrum when ran as original. Silverfaces have an extra tube and three triodes in the Bass channel than two in the normal channel. Lots of gain with a little tinkering. Some people convert this channel to the 59 Bassman circuit and keep the normal channel clean. And you still have an extra triode to play with if you need it. A Silverface below, unmoded I think.



    The only reason these amps seem clean is the huge notch taken out of the midrange by the tone stack. It would be easy enough to change the capacitors in the Bass channel tone stack to something more guitar friendly say 0.022uF. Use the deep switch and jump across the 500pF with a 2nF and have a lot of the mids and gain come back. I have a 68 unmoded but have no use for an amp that size at home, maybe I could use it for bass?With the three triodes and the unused one I would think you could mod it to JMP type circuit.
     
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2018
  7. AlvisX

    AlvisX Well-Known Member

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    ^That's right ,the lack of Mids
    It would be very easy to wire a mid boost ala Rivera era amps in there . Would basically make up the difference right there . I might do it to the next one that passes my way

    I've preferred to just go whole hog and wire up a regular 4 hole Tweed / Marshall preamp in there , for my own sake of continuity. The Bassman Ten and Bassman 100 really lend themselves well to that due to their layout
    Disagree with AMS about the silverfaces .They're the cheap ones ....if you're gonna mod 'em ,they're the ones to get

    Here's a Bassman Ten that I rebuilt

    With an Xploder


    With a Strat


    A '76 Bassman 50 ,tweeded with the bastard Kay I gave to Mike Campbell


    W/ 56 Junior


    This has been THE road rig in the USA for the last 7 yrs or so
    [​IMG]

    When I did the Bassman Ten up top in the Explorer video, I had it in it's orig combo cab with 2 G10 L and 2 G 10 S. It was pretty badass...smoke tweed reissues all day long . But I tore a ligament in my right knee loadin out an SVT , so I stuck the chassis in a Bandmaster Reverb headbox.....Looks like some funky Chuck Berry sh*t that wont work ...but back TF up !
     
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2018
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  8. mickeydg5

    mickeydg5 Well-Known Member

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    Cool demo'ing. I like the classic Munster vibe. :yesway::)
     
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  9. AlvisX

    AlvisX Well-Known Member

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    Yeah, Im from that generation that learned to play music while watchin TV , not Hot Licks Vids.....:lol:
     
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  10. ricksconnected

    ricksconnected Well-Known Member

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    ok im not looking for any marshall type tones. if I get them that's cool too.
    im looking for a very bluesy type tone. a master volume might help.
    this would be more for chilling at the house and jamming out.
    something I don't have to crank LOUD to get my blues tones I seek.
     
  11. ricksconnected

    ricksconnected Well-Known Member

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    in the bassman 50 and the w/LP JR...………
    that was bad ass and would work very well for my desires AvisX.
    tell us more on these please.
     
  12. Garrett

    Garrett Well-Known Member

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    The Bassman like a JTM is not a bedroom amp. They get their grunt from the power tubes.

    You can turn them down, but they sound different as most tube amps do.

    You can go down the active and passive loads and master volumes road like many of us have.

    Just sayin', the Bassman is loud.
     
  13. ricksconnected

    ricksconnected Well-Known Member

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    yes a MV would help.
     
  14. anitoli

    anitoli Well-Known Member

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  15. ricksconnected

    ricksconnected Well-Known Member

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    the red knob series. the mike soldano yrs?
     
  16. ricksconnected

    ricksconnected Well-Known Member

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    I lived the red knob Princeton and twin.
     
  17. anitoli

    anitoli Well-Known Member

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    Not too sure about who designed these as i have also heard it was Paul Rivera. Maybe someone on here knows.
     
  18. mickeydg5

    mickeydg5 Well-Known Member

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    I remember having Metal Method. :D


    upload_2018-7-12_14-45-6.jpeg
     
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  19. ricksconnected

    ricksconnected Well-Known Member

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    ah yes it was Paul actually.
     
  20. ricksconnected

    ricksconnected Well-Known Member

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    they were known as the Rivera Reds.
     

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