Incoming Thunderbolt Day

Make it loud here.
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Unicorn Warrior
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Incoming Thunderbolt Day

Post by Unicorn Warrior » Tue Sep 19, 2017 1:48 pm

Just traded my Super Reverb for a bunch of drum equipment which left me ampless. I pined around on my options for quite a while going back and forth between Voxes and maybe one of the new Supro 1600s that sweet water is giving a great deal on right now. I decided to take a gamble and go with a Supro Thunderbolt I found for a good deal used on Reverb. I'm a little nervous as I've honestly got 0 experience with these or supro in general. My main motivators were A. Getting a smaller amp, B. Getting a darker/grittier clean tone, and C. Having a 15 inch speaker for the Bass VI. On top of all that the highs of my JM Jaguar were accentuated too much with the SR.

Don't see a lot of Supro amps posted on here so I'll give this one a review when it comes in. Should be here Friday evening and will be testing it out then in rehearsal as well.

I'm intrigued by the single tone knob. Hoping that it's less for me to mess up.

Anyone have any experience with these?

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marqueemoon
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Re: Incoming Thunderbolt Day

Post by marqueemoon » Tue Sep 19, 2017 7:27 pm

Unicorn Warrior wrote:Just traded my Super Reverb for a bunch of drum equipment which left me ampless. I pined around on my options for quite a while going back and forth between Voxes and maybe one of the new Supro 1600s that sweet water is giving a great deal on right now. I decided to take a gamble and go with a Supro Thunderbolt I found for a good deal used on Reverb. I'm a little nervous as I've honestly got 0 experience with these or supro in general. My main motivators were A. Getting a smaller amp, B. Getting a darker/grittier clean tone, and C. Having a 15 inch speaker for the Bass VI. On top of all that the highs of my JM Jaguar were accentuated too much with the SR.

Don't see a lot of Supro amps posted on here so I'll give this one a review when it comes in. Should be here Friday evening and will be testing it out then in rehearsal as well.

I'm intrigued by the single tone knob. Hoping that it's less for me to mess up.

Anyone have any experience with these?
I've played a few of the Supro amps in shops. I think they sound great but rattle too damn much (as all combos do to some degree). I bet it will be fine. This is definitely a specific peeve of mine.

I've never found a single tone knob to be a problem provided I like the basic sound of the amp.

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Tafarel
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Re: Incoming Thunderbolt Day

Post by Tafarel » Wed Sep 20, 2017 6:52 am

I have one of the Supro Thunderbolt reissues -- and I love it.

I had a genuine '60s TBolt that I got rid of because it just didn't hold the low end very well -- it was always flabby sounding. Furthermore, it seemed the longer I'd play it, the more it would drift tone-wise. What I mean is that the first half-hour or so it felt dialed in and sounded alright, but the the second hour or so it began it pick up odd noises and I'd have to adjust my tone. There was no way a Bass VI would've sounded good with this amp.

I had a choice when I bought the reissue: the bog-standard two-knob version or the plus with the 3-way rectifier. I tend to like simpler amps (one of my other amps is a Marshall 2061x - volume and tone, that's it) so I opted for the simple TBolt. It shows the character of every guitar you put through it: JMs, Strats, LPs. And it sounds great with all of them. I never played my Bass VI through it, but that 15" speaker has some serious thump in it.

It's not the lightest amp in the world, but considerably lighter than my Vibro-King, of course. It takes pedals well. My band plays pretty gauzy-gazey kind of music with lots of fuzz, delay and reverb. I always 'want' to take my Vibro-King to gigs, because it is such a great pedal platform, but... I more often than not take the Thunderbolt because there is no drop-off in performance and maybe a little more character to the amp than the VK (whatever that is).

Congratulations! I think you will love the amp. The rhino-hide holds up pretty well, too. Rather surprised at that, frankly.
"I'm nostalgic for conversations I had yesterday. I've begun reminiscing events before they even occur. I'm reminiscing this right now. I can't go to the bar because I've already looked back on it in my memory, and I didn't have a good time."

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Unicorn Warrior
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Re: Incoming Thunderbolt Day

Post by Unicorn Warrior » Wed Sep 20, 2017 7:02 am

Rock on dude. That's good to hear about the effects. I generally have delays and verbs always on.

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garyfanclub
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Re: Incoming Thunderbolt Day

Post by garyfanclub » Wed Sep 20, 2017 7:42 am

Can't wait to hear about this!

I've played a number of different Supro RI's at the Sam Ash here in town, and have yet to play one that I didn't REALLY like. If it's dark, articulate cleans you're looking for, I think you've come to the right place. Most recently, they had a Dual-Tone (1x12?) in the shop that they'd marked down to $899, and simply could not find something in the shop that didn't sound great through that thing. If it'd had reverb, I'd probably own it right now. I tried a Squier VM Jazzmaster through it and it sounded excellent, woody, detailed, and definitely not too bright. Keep in mind, this is with all the tone knobs at noon, so if you wanted bright, I'm sure you could get it.

If I had to characterize it, I'd say they're very close to the mid-60's Ampeg stuff, especially the models with reverb. Emphasis on the mids, but more touch responsive overall. I'll also say they're a bit smoother than my old Ampegs when transitioning into OD, but I was only able to turn the Supro up a couple times and have limited experience on that end.

That's my $0.02, looking forward to hearing the clips!

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Unicorn Warrior
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Re: Incoming Thunderbolt Day

Post by Unicorn Warrior » Sat Sep 23, 2017 8:33 am

Well, the amp is in. But I won't be able to play it for a while because one of the 6l6 tubes is cracked. It looks great though. Really good construction. Was really hoping to use it at practice last night. New tube should be here soon.


(Edit) Now that I think about it, I know nothing about tubes. Will it be ok to just throw another tube in without biasing? (Not really sure what biasing is).

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Re: Incoming Thunderbolt Day

Post by garyfanclub » Thu Sep 28, 2017 4:14 am

Unicorn Warrior wrote:Well, the amp is in. But I won't be able to play it for a while because one of the 6l6 tubes is cracked. It looks great though. Really good construction. Was really hoping to use it at practice last night. New tube should be here soon.


(Edit) Now that I think about it, I know nothing about tubes. Will it be ok to just throw another tube in without biasing? (Not really sure what biasing is).
Looks like they're cathode bias, so you shouldn't need to do anything when you drop in new power tubes.

Sources:

https://suprousa.com/tech/power-amps/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

http://www.thetubestore.com/Resources/M ... Bias-Types" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

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Unicorn Warrior
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Re: Incoming Thunderbolt Day

Post by Unicorn Warrior » Thu Sep 28, 2017 6:27 am

Thanks for that Gary. That's weird. When I asked Supro in an email, they told me that the tubes should be matched. Going to email them again after seeing this.

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Unicorn Warrior
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Re: Incoming Thunderbolt Day

Post by Unicorn Warrior » Thu Sep 28, 2017 9:24 am

Regardless the seller sent me some matched tubes. Anyway, I got to plug straight in for a few minutes on my lunch break. My first impressions were good. First the biggest downside is the clean head-room. While the cleans sound good, they don't last that long on the dial. Anything past 10-11 turns into crunch with my low output Johnny Marr Jag. While this is the biggest downside, the amps cleans are great. This amp is kind of like a Vox with more chime/less headroom. Very responsive amp. More senesitive i would say than my hw ac15 and 30 that I used to own. Very sweet and awesome break-up. And the bottom end is so good and tight. Really highlights octave chords....


With all that said, that was only spending 20 minutes with it. I plan to experiment more with the volume and tone as well as inputs and my pedal board later... will update after that

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Unicorn Warrior
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Re: Incoming Thunderbolt Day

Post by Unicorn Warrior » Tue Oct 10, 2017 2:13 pm

Sorry I've been sleeping on this thread guys. This is one of my favorite amps I've ever owned. Not much clean headroom, which to me is vitally important and I thought this would deter me, however my volume pedal allows me to get around this. It's very dynamic and easy to dial in. It's got a tone so thick and gritty unlike any other amp distortion I've heard really. It's almost Vox like, but way more gritty. Handles the Bass VI fairly well and shines with my Marrguar.

Interested to see what it would sound like when hit with HBs

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Unicorn Warrior
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Re: Incoming Thunderbolt Day

Post by Unicorn Warrior » Wed Oct 11, 2017 10:44 am

Also forgot to mention, the serial number on this amp is 00002. So I'm assuming this was the second production amp made?....Kinda cool

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