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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
...from another forum:

"Most modders say that replacing the output tranny is the biggest positive change......If you do nothing else, replace the output tranny."


i'm thinking of giving this a try in the next month or so with my traynor ycv40wr combo.

does anyone know exactly what the alleged improvements are?

-dh
 

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david henman said:
...from another forum:

"Most modders say that replacing the output tranny is the biggest positive change......If you do nothing else, replace the output tranny."


i'm thinking of giving this a try in the next month or so with my traynor ycv40wr combo.

does anyone know exactly what the alleged improvements are?

-dh
I think in the majority of these cases they are talking about Fender RIs and Marshall RIs being upgraded to MM or Heybour trannies. In this case the replacements are built to be closer replicas of the originals.

In some cases people are beefing up their output trannies, ie) Deluxe Reverbs. Better bottom end and fuller sounding.

Not sure where you want to go with the Traynor? Is there something you are looking to improve?
 

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David, rarely does a good amplifier need an OT upgrade. The tranny is a large part of the amp's tone and if the amp was successful on the market then changing it could actually make things worse.

Amps are not designed for upgrades. Trannies come in all sorts of sizes and mounting footprints. You likely don't have the room to fit a larger tranny and you ALWAYS have to drill new holes for the mounting bolts!

The current trend of "upgrades" is coming from a couple of areas. First off, there are a raft of re-issues of vintage models, like Deluxe Reverbs and JTM 45's. In these cases the original tranny maker died off long ago and the plant is now a parking lot. The name may have been sold but that OT in the re-issue BluesBreaker marked "Drake Transformers" is NOT built the same as the original Drake and to a good ear will NOT sound the same!

A few guys have reverse engineered some of the classic OTs and offer products virtually identical to the original devices. They offer the chance not to do an upgrade but rather to make a modern re-issue indeed sound like the old one!

I was there at Yorkville with Ray the designer when he had his YCV40 prototype patched together on his bench. I was the first guy outside of Yorkville to play it and it sounded great! I don't believe you could find a different OT that would sound better.

We're also hearing a lot of tranny upgrade noise from the Epiphone Valve Jr. crowd. They take a Champ type circuit and have it made in China with cheap labour and even cheaper OTs and other parts and sell it over here for over $150 bucks. They then put another $150 bucks or more into a better quality OT and other stuff. Then at least $150 in labour and time.

Then they can brag about what a great deal they got in that little amp...

As usual, it all depends...:food-smiley-004:
 

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Wild Bill said:
We're also hearing a lot of tranny upgrade noise from the Epiphone Valve Jr. crowd. They take a Champ type circuit and have it made in China with cheap labour and even cheaper OTs and other parts and sell it over here for over $150 bucks. They then put another $150 bucks or more into a better quality OT and other stuff. Then at least $150 in labour and time.

Then they can brag about what a great deal they got in that little amp...

As usual, it all depends...:food-smiley-004:
I've read that a lot. But I like mine. For me it's a bit different. The amp was a gift $0, labour done by me $0 (great way to learn) and in parts so far I've spent very little. Just some small stuff including new tubes. Most of the caps and resistors I got from my dad like I was telling you before. I don't plan on replacing the trannies cause of cost. So for me it is a great deal. But I do agree spending $450+ and then saying it's a great deal is kinda stupid. But thats what people do. I really do think the amp is good cheap way to get into tube amps. But there is no way I'd put $300 into it. If I was gonna spend that much I would've just bought a different amp.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
...thanks, guys, and especially wild bill for putting this into perspective.

there's nothing wrong with the traynor, but a comment from a friend made me curious about this.

i've become a bit of a gear nut in my old age, and comments like that get me all wound up.

and, even though i've had the traynor amp for five years with zero complaints, one still tends to wonder if little improvements can be had.

-dh
 

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I tend to agree with the speakers. I had the same issue with my Ampeg, the love was fading. I replaced the speaker from the stock one and I'm in love again... I picked up a 12" Eminence Legend for a good price and it changed the whole sound.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
...the traynor has a celestion vintage 30 in there now, and i have read that it is definitely not the ideal speaker for this combo. i also have a 25-watt greenback, probably not the right speaker, either.

i'm intrigued. at some point i'll try and find out if there is a consensus on the ideal speaker for this amp. the one i would "like" to work is a lightweight neodymium speaker, of course!!!

-dh
 

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Discussion Starter #10
...btw, i just re-tubed with a set of jj tesla. i have to say, i'm a little underwhelmed. it breaks up way too early.

-dh
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Jeff Flowerday said:
Did you check and set the bias?
...this is a self-biasing amp.

dave mccullough at l&m in scarborough suggests that i should not attempt this myself. execllent advice, in my opinion!

-dh
 

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david henman said:
...this is a self-biasing amp.

dave mccullough at l&m in scarborough suggests that i should not attempt this myself. execllent advice, in my opinion!

-dh
Hmmm, that's a new one. I know there are cathode biased output sections, even then they are not self biasing in the sense that the output section will run exactly the same no matter the output tubes that are in it. I still check the bias on a cathode biased amp when changing tubes to make sure things haven't gone right of wack.

That said if it's Cathode Biased you don't want to be changing the resister on tube change, so finding the right type and rated output is the correct solution.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Jeff Flowerday said:
Hmmm, that's a new one. I know there are cathode biased output sections, even then they are not self biasing in the sense that the output section will run exactly the same no matter the output tubes that are in it.
That said if it's Cathode Biased you don't want to be changing the resister on tube change, so finding the right type and rated output is the correct solution.
...well, i have been wanting to have a top drawer amp tech do a diagnostic on this amp, anyway, and suggest some upgrades, so this will serve as further motivation.

i'll probably take it to john fletcher, tim at songbird or possibly lou at kaos music.

-dh
 

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Self Biasing or Auto Balancing????

There seems to be a lot of mis information about the YCV series Bias -I used to think they were self biaising and also went through the JJ tubes having way too much breakup in my old YCV40...

Well I thought I would take a look at this amp since I just put my YCV50 back together and cranked it up. With JJ EL34;s that thankfully are working nicely.

Cathode Bias - and Adjustable - The schematic is available on the Traynor site. and from there I can see there is a 10 ohm resistor one rach cathode to ground. And also there is a Bias setting pot with the instructions "Bias 350mv Across ...(cathode Ressitors).

Maybe one of the Experienced techs can chime in but it looks to me like a clear instruciton to BIAS the amp!!!

There is a nifty bias BALANCE circuit that seems to get a lot of press.

Mark.
 

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JJ's typically draw more current than similar tubes.If the amp is indeed fixed bias,it will need to be adjusted to use JJ tubes.
A 10 ohm cathode resistor is used to check an amp that is fixed biased.The 350mv reading translates to 35ma.350mv=35ma with a 10 ohm resistor.

www.claramps.com
 

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Per the schematic your amp is fixed bias. Quick trip to the tech to get the bias properly adjusted and you might change your mind about your new JJs!

Cheers!
 

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"Details, always details!"

Telemark said:
.

Cathode Bias - and Adjustable - The schematic is available on the Traynor site. and from there I can see there is a 10 ohm resistor one rach cathode to ground. And also there is a Bias setting pot with the instructions "Bias 350mv Across ...(cathode Ressitors).

Maybe one of the Experienced techs can chime in but it looks to me like a clear instruciton to BIAS the amp!!!

There is a nifty bias BALANCE circuit that seems to get a lot of press.

Mark.
Look a little closer, Mark. That circuit is a bit more complicated than it seems!

The 10 ohm cathode resistors are there to provide reference voltages. They tell you what the total cathode current is running through the tube. There are two circuits, one for each side. There's a common overall adjustment pot.

After sampling the reference voltage the bias voltage is developed through the MPSA56 transistors and sent back to the tube's grid. Once you've set the adjustment pot the circuit will tend to adjust the bias voltage to keep things the same even if you change the tubes to a hotter or colder pair.

So actually we're both right. The amp is self-adjusting in that once you've set the bias you can change tubes but the amp will compensate and keep the idle current the same. Yet you CAN change that preset idle point with the adjustment pot!

I've found that there is little if any difference in the "sweet spot" setting for different brands of tubes. The difference is in the kind of music! Metal guys like the idle current on the low side, making the tone thinner yet more defined. Rockin' blues guys like it higher to make it warmer. What brand of tubes doesn't matter. A 6L6 or an EL34 has certain electrical specs. 70% of the plate dissipation figure is the generally accepted warm sweet spot and 40-50% or even less is the spot for metal. A different brand of tube not likely to have a much higher plate dissipation rating. Why? It would cost more money to make and no designer would ever plan around an oddball spec 6L6 or EL34. It would lock him in to only one source of tube. He'd be paying their price, living with their delivery and praying they never went out of business and left him stranded!

It seems to me that for purposes of comparison between different brands of output tubes the YCV40 is a convenient amp. Just change 'em out and you don't have to reset the bias. If you want to change the preset for warm or metal you have that ability as well.

Once again, just the same only different! None
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Telemark said:
Thanks for Clearing that up Bill!
:wave: Mark

...i've come to rely on wild bill for clearing things up:bow:

now if he'd just move a little closer to newmarket i'd get him to work on my stuff!

-dh
 
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