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Just Strum

Valve Jr.

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Since playing electric (2 years) I almost immediately went with a AD30VT, definitely a nice amp. However the other day I purchased a Modified Valve Jr - WOW!!! I didn't realize what I was missing. I have an RP350 running into it and the amp has opened up a whole new world.

 

I know nothing about doing a mod on an amp, so I purchased mine already done.

 

Here's what was done - I know this amp gets great reviews as is, but man this mod is something else. I'll admit that I don't understand about 90% of this.

 

This is a "version 1" Valve Jr, so first it needed to have the original design shortcomings fixed (mostly excessive hum/noise and some grounding errors). After that, I added some new features, as well as making numerous improvements to the amp's gain & tone, plus a few safety & relaibility enhancements. Many of these are included in a group of mods that have become very popular with the VJr modder community, often referred to as the "silver/gold mods". I stuck with the stock speaker and original EH/Sovtek tubes, and Strum can upgrade those later, as he sees fit.

 

Noise/Hum Reduction

 

* Convert to DC filament heating

* Add more filtering to power section

* Multiple resistor & capacitor upgrades to reduce noise

 

Reliability & Safety Mods

 

* Reduce voltage levels and bias of EL84 power tube (stock is w-a-a-a-y too hot)

* Upgrade multiple resistors to quieter/safer metal oxide type

* Replace dinky stock volume pot with a beefier 24mm pot

* Add "bleeder" resistor to DC power rail to drain large filter caps after power-down (shock hazard reduction)

 

Added Features

 

* Tone pot, patterned on Fender's Tweed-era Princeton amp

* Standby switch

* Gain boost switch

* Brightness switch

* 8 and 16 ohm output jacks (stock is 4 ohm)

 

Tone & Gain Improvements

 

* Upgrade stock output transformer to a Hammond 125DSE--multiple tonal benefits

* Multiple resistor and capacitor changes/upgrades to improve tone, clarity, gain and punch

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Yeppers! They are a whole nights FUN just waiting to happen. I use mine with a Korg Toneworks Pedal and I'm in Pig Heaven.

 

You nailed it. The first night I had it I stayed up to about 4:00 Am - family wasn't real happy, but I was.

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not bad for a cheapa**ed lil' rig eh... I got a few amps sitting around here and some cost a lot more but I still hit my VJ when "Mama" goes shoppin'. I KRANK her up too - fcrew the neighbors! I'm 56 and all I've heard for 40+ years is "turn it down - it's too loud - do you have to play it that loud..." hehe - yeah I do - it's called ROCK & ROLL for a reason!

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my 1st one (head) did. great sounds. Sold it and wish I hadn't within 3 days.

If memory serves...' date=' your latest is the stock V3, right? Curious to hear your take on the V3 w/o Bit-Mo compared to the V1-2 with Mo, if you care to share.

 

BTW - the source of BLUES music comes from whatever causes a true blues artist to visit the whiskey & percs in the first place --- for those that try to switch the order around they just end up playing wannabe blues (look for them on a Sony label).:-&

 

Hit every BLUE NOTE baaaby..., I'm going to play on:-"

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BTW - the source of BLUES music comes from whatever causes a true blues artist to visit the whiskey & percs in the first place --- for those that try to switch the order around they just end up playing wannabe blues (look for them on a Sony label).:-&

 

 

lol :-&

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I feel the STOCK V3 sounds better than the V1 with the Bitmo trio mods. I have it all right from the factory. That was 1 reason I sold my V1 head and ny stock V2 combo - cause the V3 is so much "more" I knew I didn't really need em. I already have a few tubers and SS too sitting here.

 

The Percs and the Whiskey is years of WOMEN and LIFE in general...

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I'm going for the 19 Watt epi as soon as it comes out.

Finishing a combo and a head now.

And then I'm gonna build two 6V6 versions from scratch using my old OTs and new PTs and building the cab, eyelet boards.

 

all this blues talk and nothing about dues.

I can't afford this stuff but I'm hooked. all I can do is hope the blues come later!!

 

you can't beat that can you.. no money.. great amps... and free blues credentials!

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The Percs and the Whiskey is years of WOMEN and LIFE in general...

Mmmm' date=' hmm. There you go. Blues material for the ages.[/i']

 

Looks like you sold your V1 - 2 at a good time too. With the V3 "hot rod" out soon prices on the older modded versions are likely to drop. I'll check over the hot rod but unless it's a whole lot better than my V3 (+reverb pedal) no sense in changing. However, I may add the 18 watt SR. for club volume.

 

Hit every BLUE NOTE baaaby..., I'm going to play on:-"

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I'm 56 and all I've heard for 40+ years is "turn it down - it's too loud - do you have to play it that loud..." hehe - yeah I do - it's called ROCK & ROLL for a reason!

 

awesome. ](*,)=D> =D>

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18W

 

Class A/B push-pull tube amplifier

 

2 x 6V6GT power tubes, 4 x 12AX7A preamp tubes

 

Gain, Volume, Treble, Mid, Bass, Presence, and Reverb controls

 

Standby switch

 

One 1/4" Input

 

 

4-, 8-, and 16-ohm speaker outs

 

 

if as well done as the V3 heads.. the above specs seem to me to be pretty nice features for 300.00.

stick a VVR in there and it would be fine at low volume, too.

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I just purchased a V3 VJ from Gibson here in Nashville. I have the Trio mod coming and a "Little Sucker" attenuator. Curious to hear how the V3 sounds with the Trio mod. I have an email into Bruce to see what he says.

 

What is this VJ "Hot Rod" you are talking about?

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it's a new head with reverb...

 

see the valve senior threads.. sweetwater has them coming in 7/20.

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not bad for a cheapa**ed lil' rig eh... I got a few amps sitting around here and some cost a lot more but I still hit my VJ when "Mama" goes shoppin'. I KRANK her up too - fcrew the neighbors! I'm 56 and all I've heard for 40+ years is "turn it down - it's too loud - do you have to play it that loud..." hehe - yeah I do - it's called ROCK & ROLL for a reason!

 

I'm loving it.

 

Picture310.jpg

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The only thing that I'm not to excited about the VS is the 6v6's. I'm more of a british tone guy, and I really dig el84's, but I guess I'm going to have to get over my little complaints about features and see if it's really any good. I hope it is.

 

I gotta pick up a VJ first.......I'll get one one of these days.

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I'm interested in the 6V6's for cleans.. and the two pre amp tubes/voicing of preamp..

deluxe reverb? I dunno..

they made their vjr rep. on gain so I tend to think they wont want to fall down on that with the sr.s

but what's it voice is going to be.. ???

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Cleans? Cleans are easy. Screw the cleans. ](*,) 6V6's have a great distortion grind. Listen to some Neil Young! You'll hear 'em. They do have their own character, but it's really not all THAT much different from an el84. Just not as brittle up top when you push 'em over the edge. But above all, BE SURE to get some matched JJ 6V6S for it. Those have the sweetest tones this side of NOS. Sovtek and EH 6V6GT's sound totally fugly in comparison.

 

Gil...

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Yeppers! They are a whole nights FUN just waiting to happen. I use mine with a Korg Toneworks Pedal and I'm in Pig Heaven.

 

This is my first tube and I purchased it already modded. I have a question regarding the JJ's. I came across your post in Recording Review posted back in April and you note JJ's there too. What will I gain or change with the change?

 

I use mine in attempt to pursue learning the blues, so what are good additional mods?

 

The guy I purchased it from mentioned trying JJ's down the road and to be honest I wouldn't even know where to look or what I would be ordering.

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Cleans? Cleans are easy. Screw the cleans. :) 6V6's have a great distortion grind. Listen to some Neil Young! You'll hear 'em. They do have their own character' date=' but it's really not all THAT much different from an el84. Just not as brittle up top when you push 'em over the edge. But above all, BE SURE to get some matched JJ 6V6S for it. Those have the sweetest tones this side of NOS. Sovtek and EH 6V6GT's sound totally fugly in comparison.

 

Gil...[/quote']

 

I most respectfully disagree Gil........while I like a good grinding tone just as much as the next guy...good cleans are much harder to come by with any sort of usable headroom IMHO. I think a good overdriven tone is much easier to achieve than a good clean tone.

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Just Strum - JJ's seem a bit smoother - less harsh. Yours is a Version 3 - correct (newest model)? My 3 has 1 EH tube and 1 JJ (sounds too good to mess with it) - my Version 1 head I put 2 JJ's in it - volume seemed a bit less (tiny bit) but MUCH smoother gain when cranked up (my V1 had SovTek's)

 

I got mine from Doug's Tubes - they're great guys!

 

http://www.dougstubes.com/?gclid=COD6qaS1wJQCFRJexwodoEAJRw

 

Email em - tell em what you have (VJ) and they'll find whatever you need based on your likes & dislikes - they really go out of their way to customize each order to better the TONE you're looking for. If yours sounds GREAT - don't fix it until the tubes need changin!

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Just Strum - JJ's seem a bit smoother - less harsh. Yours is a Version 3 - correct (newest model)? My 3 has 1 EH tube and 1 JJ (sounds too good to mess with it) - my Version 1 head I put 2 JJ's in it - volume seemed a bit less (tiny bit) but MUCH smoother gain when cranked up (my V1 had SovTek's)

 

Mine is a V1 also and has SovTek's

 

I'll contact Doug's Tubes and let them know what I am trying to achieve (besides learning how to play).

 

You may have run into the guy I bought this from on on of the other forums - He usually goes by duhvoodooman

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