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badbluesplayer

Gibson GA-20RVT Reissue Amp Porn

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Very nice. You know in all my years of playing (around 28 years now) I have never seen or tried a Gibson amp in person...here in the UK they are very rare. The closest I got is owning a book on the history of Gibson amps that I bought last year and a old flyer advertising Goldtone that I picked up in the late 90's in my teenage years.

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Does it have issues?

Not any more, lol. The amp had no serial number and it came out of the Nashville area and I'm not sure about the origin of the amp. The tremolo had been disabled cause it ticked uncontrollably when it was enabled. So I replaced the grid wire to the tremolo tube with a piece of shielded wire and bingo, no ticking. Replaced the optocoupler (the roach) with a better one - the kind they use for channel switching. The tremolo is strong but it's never going to be transparent, like on a Deluxe Reverb, because the amp's cathode biased and the tremolo is a bias modulating type. So when you turn on the tremolo, it darkens the sound, even with the tremolo turned down all the way.

 

The reverb works fine, but it's not quite as lush as a Fender.

 

The amp is fatter and darker sounding than a Deluxe Reverb. Channel one has a funky tone stack like some older Gibsons. Sounds pretty good. Nice and thick. Channel two is kind of meh. A little muddy. More muddy when you turn on the tremolo. Sounds better with the mids turned down.

 

The customer never had the footswitch, and the tremolo is engaged without it, so channel 2 always had the tremolo on, but it was disabled, making it sound really bad. So the customer will be in for a pleasant surprise when he gets it back. I have a footswitch and some dummy plugs for it now.

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Very cool! It seems that the tremolo circuit can get troublesome in a lot of vintage Fender amps also. When they work well, there is nothing like them.....:-)

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