Tuesday, November 3

New Gear: Fender Blues Jr.

Sorry for the blatant lack of posts. I've just been having way too much fun with my most recent bank-account drain to do much writing!

I will continue to both praise and lament Craigslist. My most recent purchase? A $300 Fender Blues Jr. I've been looking to get a Blues Jr. for a long time, mostly because it is:

a) a small, very portable combo amp,
b) has just one channel, and a simple Fender reverb tank, and
c) I small, wattage wise, and takes pedals well, and has tubes, and is generally awesome.

If you've read my gear page, you'll note that my previous main amp was an Epiphone Valve Jr. which, honestly, sounds fantastic. It's got really good, musical cleans and is only 5 watts, which means that it breaks up very well in low-volume settings, a must for a church amp. The biggest beefs I've had with it is that it is a head/cab, making it slightly less portable, and that it doesn't have a reverb on-board, making me have to waste space on a Verbzilla to make that happen. Not that I dislike the Verbzilla. I mean, it's a little too digital-sounding to me, but it does a decent enough reverb. But with this Blues Jr., I can both save some space on my board, and also save a little time in only having to carry one box instead of two.

It's based upon the same tubes as the Valve Jr., but I've been playing around with it enough to have found some differences in the character. The Blues Jr. feels a bit more open-sounding, and more clean, whereas it's not difficult at all to push the Valve Jr. into distortion. I can also tell the difference between the two speakers. I've been playing on the Valve Jr. for like 2 years now, and it's pleasantly broken-in, whereas the owner of my Blues Jr. told me that he hadn't put any real hours on his amp, and you can definitely tell. The amp feels a bit stiffer, but something tells me that once the speaker breaks in a bit (or once I replace the speaker), it will be a lot smoother. I still need to see if I can use the cab of my Valve Jr. as a break-out speaker for my Blues Jr. to try it out on a broken-in speaker, or just to try it out with a better speaker.

Some would call it harsh, but I prefer "crisp". I think once it breaks in a bit, this little amp is really going to be something.

No comments:

Post a Comment