Fun With Amplifiers

I am all setup in my bedroom music nook for some November Musical fun. I brought the Vox MV50 Clean amp and the speaker cab I bought to match with it out of the living room and into the bedroom. They will go back when the kids come home for Christmas break because I usually keep that amp plugged into the piano so they can use it.

I still have the Fender Bassbreaker 15 here for use with the re-recording music. The cab is a Bassbreaker cabinet too and it looks almost identical to the Bassbreaker 15 itself so it almost looks like I have a Bassbreaker stack going. I don’t though. I have not brought out the A/B/Y switch to let me run the two amps together. Maybe at some point I will, but for now I just have one amp each for two separate projects.

The tentative title for the November album is something like Not a Gimmick, or Not a Gimmick at All, or something like that. Because of this:

Nutube… not a gimmick at all.

Lunch Break

Lunch break on a Wednesday. We’ve been talking about the desks in our new building today. March 13, 2020 was the last day at our desks in the Waltham building. Two months ago the Waltham building was sold. Now we have desks in another building but prior to this morning none of us had gone to check it out. One guy went today and reported back that none of our stuff from Waltham has made it to the new desks yet. Uh oh. The upside is that some of us might be getting new monitors out of the deal. I had two when we left. They were both old and less than good. This could work out for me.

Wait… didn’t I write something about not talking about work?

The AC folks have come and gone. The window for their arrival was between 7:00 and 11:00. They knocked on the door at 10:50. His first question was, would you like me to wear a mask? Yes, yes I would. Thanks. It was just a routine cleaning and the AC in the wall in the bedroom clearly benefitted from it because it’s working like crazy now. It’s actually cold in here. I haven’t spent much time in the rest of the house yet so I don’t have any news from that front yet.

The tech said the wall unit in the bedroom was pretty old. Huh? It was installed three years ago. How is that old? Was it sitting on some warehouse shelf for a decade before it was installed in our house? Worse… was it used?

My father is in the hospital again. Day two. My brother is with him. The idea is to move him back into a rehab so that he can get back to a point where he can take care of himself better than he can now… which he can’t. He asked to have some of his more common aches and pains looked at while he was in there. Good idea. No real news on any front yet. Hopefully he’ll be in a new rehab quickly and he can get back to working on getting better. I am scared and worried and stressed and wracked with guilt and I am just overwhelmed with it all… and I’m not the one in the hospital bed. I can’t even begin to imagine how he feels. I hate this. I want my dad to be better again.

So Covid is over, right? The world is opened up again, right? People are still getting sick and people are still dying, but it’s all over, right? I’m thinking about things that I can do that were put on hold. Vacations would be first on that list but we have two college kids now and we are out of money. I already had a haircut, but I need another one because my hair grows faster than light. I need to get my eyes checked. Jen has done that already but see the previous sentence regarding money. I may have to ride out my old glasses for a little while longer. There is a guitar and an amplifier that I’d like to trade in. It depends on how much I can get for each item, but if I can get a used ’68 Deluxe Reverb or a used Les Paul Junior in exchange, I might. I don’t know how that will go.

Okay, time to clean up my lunch and get back to work. The hope is we will be watching episode two of Loki by 6:00pm. Four hours or so from now. Fingers crossed.

Wish my dad good luck, okay? Thanks.

Tone Controls

I took the cat’s advice and played my new guitar.

I messed with my little recording nook pedal board a little. I took out the Wampler Plexi Drive Mini for the Chicago Stompworks Mr Vermin Rat clone.

I didn’t record anything. I just played. Loud. Jen and Harry had to step out for a minute and I took the opportunity to see if I could get the little Vox AC15 amp up to band practice volume.

Normal channel… master volume on about five… channel volume up to about seven… 106 decibels. sweet.

Note the tone control on the AC15’s normal channel is wired backwards. I knew that and I set the amp appropriately. Why then was my sound so super toppy?

Because the tone control on the Rat clone is also wired backward and while I thought I had it set super bassy it was actually set super trebly.

Amateur.

That Pedal Show Slays Me Again

They just did a full episode on Fender Deluxe Reverbs. My Deluxe Reverb has been at my bass players house since COVID started. I miss it so much right now I can’t put it into words.

I joked with Jen that I’ll just have to buy another one. She said, “maybe.” my brain heard, “go ahead and buy one tonight.” WOOHOO!*

*Just kidding…. or am I?

It’s All Here and it Works

304/365

Lunch time came and I finally couldn’t stand it anymore. I pulled a power cable off of another amplifier and took the new (used) Vox AC15 for a spin. Much to my surprise it actually works. Jen was still working so I didn’t test the volume, but I did play it clean with the master volume and the channel volume low, and I played it dirty with the master volume WAY down and the channel volume cranked. I can still smell the tubes cooking. Nice.

Fortunately, while I was noodling UPS came with the missing power cable. The amp was eight days late. The cable was nine. It’s here though. My ES-335 is feeling like it might need some new strings. Other than that I think I’m ready to record some guitar tonight.

I should note that I still haven’t actually plugged in the new power cable yet. Am I counting my chickens before they hatch? Probably. Oh well. I’m sick of this shit. It’s over. Let’s boogie.

The Amp is Here… Mostly

My new (used) amp was delivered today. It was eight days late, but it’s here…. sort of.

It’s hard to tell with a closed back cabinet, but it looks like the vacuum tubes survived the ordeal. Do they work? That’s the question.

Why is that still a question, you ask?

Because guitar center failed to include a power cable in the shipment.

There will probably be a post discussing the power cable situation but (spoiler) I need to calm down first.

I’ll Stop Bitching About UPS

  • June 22, 2020
    • Out for Delivery, estimate 6/22 by 9:00PM
  • June 23, 2020
    • Out for Delivery, estimate 6/23 by 9:00PM
  • June 24, 2020
    • In Transit to Chelmsford
    • Most recent activity: Delivery will be delayed by one business day.
    • Come back later for estimated delivery date.

In other words, they haven’t a clue where my package is. Okay. From now on I will reserve all of my bitching about this subject for phone calls to UPS customer service. You folks won’t have to listen to me anymore.

Denied… Again

I heard a sound outside. It sounded like a large vehicle. I looked out the window. There was a UPS truck driving away.

Oh happiness! My amplifier!

I went outside. There was a package. It was large. It weighted about five pounds. What? The amp weighs over 40 pounds.

Crud. It’s not my amp.

Denied

UPS hasn’t come with my amplifier yet. The tracking number still says Out for Delivery, but the delivery date now says the 23rd. Tomorrow.

Denied!

Home Recording Rig Changes

I spent my lunch break moving stuff around. The Fender Bassbreaker 18/30 is way too loud to play at home with other people in the house. At the last gig, back on Feb 1st, it was EPIC. At home it’s just too much. For the last 2 months it’s been used as a table to hold my Bassbreaker 15 which has been the only amp I’ve used since RPM ended on Feb 29.

I brought the 18/30 down cellar and stored it off the floor as we’ve had some moisture issues. It should be safe. At the moment, the 15 is sitting alone in my music nook in my bedroom.

296/365

However, changes will continue. The Vox AC15 is on a UPS Brownie and it is scheduled to be delivered by 9:00PM.

I don’t want to wait until 9:00. I want it now. NOW!

I WANT MY NEW QUARANTINE TOY NOW!

Ugh… patience, Robert. Patience.

Screw that, I WANT IT NOW!