#1
Hello there!

As a gift I received a Vox AC4TV tube amp. It's my first tube amp (i'm a novice guitarist). Please refrain from commenting on if it's a good or bad amp or anything like that...it's not what i'm here for.

The amp shipped in a pretty o.k box. Some little scruff marks around the sides, no doubt from sitting next to other boxes. The amp was intact, and it seemed to look o.k on the exterior. It actually looks quite pretty.

I tried to plug it in today, because my family was gone so I would have a chance to play at as loud as I could. I plugged in the power cord to the outlet, placed a standard guitar cable into the input, that into a few pedals, and that into my guitar (stratocaster). "Ok, let's see this thing go!" I thought. Nothing happened after a few licks of random play. No sound was present, yet the red LED on the top was on. I thought I should wait for the tubes to heat up, because I suppose that's what you need to do for these things (I have only used solid state amps before this). I waited a good 5 minutes, and still nothing.

I checked all the dials, and tried all combinations of possibilities. Changed the attenuator to 4/1/.25 watts, moved the volume controls around, the tone...no sound was produced when I strummed and plucked my guitar.

I like to test things using the scientific method, so I tried to look at different possibilities. I tried 3 other guitar cables, tried a different power cable, and cross checked it with my old amp to make sure everything worked. The "control" group worked (old amp, cables, and guitar) but the "experimental" group (new amp, cables, and guitar) did not work, so I can conclude the amp is having problems. I also tested it with and without pedals.

Additional notes:

I could hear a faint humming from the amp. Not the 60 cycle hum from my single coils. It was just a faint hum. It would raise/lower in volume as I moved that attenuator around. It did NOT change with the volume settings. It gave me a headache actually...

I'm going to call custom service to the people who shipped the amp, as they give a free 2 year warranty + there is also the vox warranty. But I wanted to ask you guys if you thought there was something wrong, like I didn't press a certain magic button on the bottom of the amp to make it go.

---also,

I know there is an "out" jack so I can run the amp through a cabinet. Would it be possible to grab a cable from that jack into the input of my solid state amp? I would do this just to see if the speaker is broken on the tube amp, and not the tubes.

Thanks!
#2
Is the standby switch on?? and yes you can run it through your solid state amp. No guarantee on decent tone though
#3
Quote by salgala2000
Is the standby switch on?? and yes you can run it through your solid state amp. No guarantee on decent tone though


There are 4 things i can 'move' on the amp; tone, volume, attenuator, and "on/off"...there is no standby switch from what i can gather....

ok, i'll try the solid state connection tomorrow (you're sure it wont 'blow up' my solid state?)
#4
i don't know if you can run it into your ss amp. I wouldn't try that unless i were sure it's ok. I certainly woudn't chance it.

what would be ok is if your ss amp has the speaker lead connected to a jack (and the ss amp's speaker is 16 ohms), you could plug the speaker into the ac4.

try the amp with the guitar plugged straight in. just in case one of your pedals has died (or the battery has died), or one of your leads has died. try with a couple of different leads, too, and different guitars, if you can.

i wouldn't try much more than that, though, because it's inside warranty and you have good reason to suspect it's faulty- you don't want to void your warranty. iirc the tubes aren't supposed to be user-serviceable, so even swapping tubes may void the warranty- plus the chassis is open when you change tubes on the ac4 (LAME), so if you don't know what you're doing you run the risk of electrocuting yourself which can involve death.
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Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
Last edited by Dave_Mc at Jun 7, 2010,
#5
If this is brand new, don't do ANYTHING without contacting Vox. If the amp shipped broken they will take care of you, no worries. If you open it up or anything, though, you can void that warranty.
Quote by Cathbard
Quote by Raijouta
Unless its electronic drums.

BURN THE WITCH!!!!!
#6
yep, exactly. you should be able to do the couple of things I said, because that's normal use (i think), and they'd expect you to at least try a couple of different leads just to be sure a lead hasn't died. But yeah, when you have a warranty, make use of it. I grow tired of the flippant posts made by a lot of people on these forums (who, i might point out, are not risking their own money) to just try random stuff which is likely to void your warranty. Maybe it is an easy fix; but if it's not, you're screwed. And you have no way of knowing for sure if it's an easy fix without voiding your warranty by opening the thing up (not to mention the risk of electrocution).
I'm an idiot and I accidentally clicked the "Remove all subscriptions" button. If it seems like I'm ignoring you, I'm not, I'm just no longer subscribed to the thread. If you quote me or do the @user thing at me, hopefully it'll notify me through my notifications and I'll get back to you.
Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#7
Okay here's the deal, you're having a problem with the electronics of the amp (obviously haha), so that means you have two or three choices:

1. Open the amp up and start testing

2. Call in warranty

3. Bring it in to be repaired somewhere.


Now if you choose one, you might need a fair bit of electrical knowledge, although it might be a simple problem like a broken or disconnected wire on the inside. So if you go for #1, look for those first. (REMEMBER TO UNPLUG THE AMP WHILE IT'S ON, and be extremely careful because there could be charges in your caps still since there's no signal going through to drain them.

Post back if you open it up and don't find an obvious broken connection, then it's circuit time!

Also, you could run that output into your SS amp, but you do so at the risk of overloading your OT on that, blowing components, and other stuff which would be a pain to fix.
"Experience is not what happens to you. It is what you do with what happens to you." - Aldous Huxley
Last edited by Zamorak at Jun 7, 2010,
#8
Quote by Zamorak
Okay here's the deal, you're having a problem with the electronics of the amp (obviously haha), so that means you have two or three choices:

1. Open the amp up and start testing

2. Call in warranty

3. Bring it in to be repaired somewhere.


Now if you choose one, you might need a fair bit of electrical knowledge, although it might be a simple problem like a broken or disconnected wire on the inside. So if you go for #1, look for those first. (REMEMBER TO UNPLUG THE AMP WHILE IT'S ON, and be extremely careful because there could be charges in your caps still since there's no signal going through to drain them.

Post back if you open it up and don't find an obvious broken connection, then it's circuit time!

No, options 1 and 3 are for morons.

Edit: When you have a warranty, I should say.
Quote by Cathbard
Quote by Raijouta
Unless its electronic drums.

BURN THE WITCH!!!!!
#9
I said options 1 and 3 not knowing if he had a warranty.
"Experience is not what happens to you. It is what you do with what happens to you." - Aldous Huxley
#10
why the fuck not? he said it in his opening post. as i said, i grow tired of flippant posts by people who have nothing personally to lose.

^^ agreed, tubetime
I'm an idiot and I accidentally clicked the "Remove all subscriptions" button. If it seems like I'm ignoring you, I'm not, I'm just no longer subscribed to the thread. If you quote me or do the @user thing at me, hopefully it'll notify me through my notifications and I'll get back to you.
Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
Last edited by Dave_Mc at Jun 7, 2010,
#11
Quote by Zamorak
I said options 1 and 3 not knowing if he had a warranty.

Well I don't mean to join in bashing you, so take this as constructive criticism, but you didn't read the whole OP, causing you to suggest opening the amp without knowing that would void his warranty. Then the advice you gave about opening the amp was pretty bad. The caps that are in most amps do not drain for hours, sometimes days, regardless of how you unplug it or turn it off.

The reason Dave gave the response he did is because you:
1. Didn't read well enought to give useful advice
2. Didn't think too much (or don't know too much) about the advice you gave
3. Despite the two above, still decided to post

Your advice is both dangerous, and potentially costly. Think before you suggest people open an amp. You could literally kill someone with a post that flippant.

Edit: Sorry TS, but if you have a warranty there's nothing you should do other than contact that company and follow their instructions. They may even walk you through a couple quick things to check before sending it back, but I think you've covered them anyway. It sucks, but if you're lucky you may even get some cash back or something in the process. (Never hurts to ask. I use the 'I'm a very loyal customer, and I wouldn't want this to change that' approach, personally.
Quote by Cathbard
Quote by Raijouta
Unless its electronic drums.

BURN THE WITCH!!!!!
Last edited by tubetime86 at Jun 7, 2010,
#12
Quote by tubetime86
Well I don't mean to join in bashing you, so take this as constructive criticism, but you didn't read the whole OP, causing you to suggest opening the amp without knowing that would void his warranty. Then the advice you gave about opening the amp was pretty bad. The caps that are in most amps do not drain for hours, sometimes days, regardless of how you unplug it or turn it off.

The reason Dave gave the response he did is because you:
1. Didn't read well enought to give useful advice
2. Didn't think too much (or don't know too much) about the advice you gave
3. Despite the two above, still decided to post

Your advice is both dangerous, and potentially costly. Think before you suggest people open an amp. You could literally kill someone with a post that flippant.


Bashing is bashing. My advice was not bad. I gave 3 options knowing he would probably take the easiest one, warranty. I said "be extremely careful". Also, caps can be drained, and quite easily actually. I do it all the time when I work on amps, which I do a lot. I also have a working knowledge of electronics, I know the risks. I could kill someone with a post that flippant? Really? First, that's the wrong word. Second, I did read the entire post as it concerned the actual problem and skimmed the rest about warranty and such.

OP has a choice, he knows that opening the amp will void the warranty. You see dave and tubetime, it'd be different if I had said "Well this is the only thing you can do so do this because everything else won't work". I gave 3 options. It leaves OP with a choice. It's not up to me and therefore OP would be responsible for what he does to his amp, since he has a choice.

Now both of you are right. I was wrong in jumping the gun and giving all of that advice. I should have put a much more obvious disclaimer and fully explained my reasoning for the advice I did give. I am understand wholly that it is his money at risk, and I never gave advice that I wouldn't do myself after thorough consideration. I apologise for my wrong there, in the future I will FULLY explain the risks of each option. However, my behavior was far from actual flippancy and certainly not reminiscent of manslaughter...


Also, Dave, I see you have a RG470 in titanium ice! I have one as well, how is that Lo-TRS holding up?
"Experience is not what happens to you. It is what you do with what happens to you." - Aldous Huxley
Last edited by Zamorak at Jun 7, 2010,
#13
not well. knife edges are shot

I stand by what i said about your post being flippant. You did mention to be careful around electricity, but you didn't mention that filter caps can (and should) be drained- granted a person new to tube amps shouldn't be messing around in the insides of the amp without help from someone who knows them better. You also missed the bit about the warranty. You gave advice which, at best, might have voided his warranty, and which, at worst, might have killed him.

I'm sorry I was a bit curt, but basically tubetime nailed everything which was unsaid in my post. What you posted in post #12 sets it out a lot more clearly, and I have no problem with that post, but a lot of that stuff should have been in your first post. That's all.
I'm an idiot and I accidentally clicked the "Remove all subscriptions" button. If it seems like I'm ignoring you, I'm not, I'm just no longer subscribed to the thread. If you quote me or do the @user thing at me, hopefully it'll notify me through my notifications and I'll get back to you.
Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#15
Quote by fly135
I must be a moron because I'd open it up.

We all get the 'I've got a warranty but I'm pretty sure I could just fix it now and save myself the hassle' woes. But if you're posting on an open forum asking for help then obviously you don't know enough to be risking voiding the warranty... So no, you're not a moron.

Zamorak: If you had put a 1/4 of as much time into your original response as you did defending yourself this whole exchange would have been avoided... Which was kind of my point from the beginning.

On public forums I assume I'm talking to a complete idiot who will take my advice word for word whether it makes sense or not... You should too. There are those people out there. Should we have to take that much care? No. Do we? Yes. Sad world, I know.
Quote by Cathbard
Quote by Raijouta
Unless its electronic drums.

BURN THE WITCH!!!!!
#16
^

I'm always paranoid that someone will do exactly as I say and then sue me, so I make sure I've covered my ass.
I'm an idiot and I accidentally clicked the "Remove all subscriptions" button. If it seems like I'm ignoring you, I'm not, I'm just no longer subscribed to the thread. If you quote me or do the @user thing at me, hopefully it'll notify me through my notifications and I'll get back to you.
Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#17
Quote by Dave_Mc
^

I'm always paranoid that someone will do exactly as I say and then sue me, so I make sure I've covered my ass.



I don't think a lawsuit would work, or be worthwhile... But who knows.
Quote by Cathbard
Quote by Raijouta
Unless its electronic drums.

BURN THE WITCH!!!!!
#18
i'm not willing to take the risk
I'm an idiot and I accidentally clicked the "Remove all subscriptions" button. If it seems like I'm ignoring you, I'm not, I'm just no longer subscribed to the thread. If you quote me or do the @user thing at me, hopefully it'll notify me through my notifications and I'll get back to you.
Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#20
To the TS: It's a combo, correct? That's what I'm assuming. The first thing I'd check is to see that the speakers are properly attached. Sometimes the wires to the speaker can get knocked off if it's not attached properly. I know a few times I freaked out when my JTM didn't produce any sound, and go figured it was just one of the speaker connectors unattached. If you can't see it, just use the warranty and get it fixed, or a new one.
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Last edited by Shiromar at Jun 7, 2010,
#21
Quote by Shiromar
To the TS: It's a combo, correct? That's what I'm assuming. The first thing I'd check is to see that the speakers are properly attached. Sometimes the wires to the speaker can get knocked off if it's not attached properly. I know a few times I freaked out when my JTM didn't produce any sound, and go figured it was just one of the speaker connectors unattached. If you can't see it, just use the warranty and get it fixed, or a new one.


Yeah, this is why I asked the question.

And, if you have the head version, make sure the cab is connected properly too. You may think it's obvious, but I know people who've forgotten.
Wait.



Roger Waters - 12th May!
#22
Just to make sure...

Are the tubes in the sockets...? Often times they will be removed for shipping so they are more secure.
Quote by Dave_Mc
I've had tube amps for a while now, but never actually had any go down on me
Quote by jj1565
maybe you're not saying the right things? an amp likes to know you care.





www.SanctityStudios.com
#23
Quote by MatrixClaw
Just to make sure...

Are the tubes in the sockets...? Often times they will be removed for shipping so they are more secure.


+1, I forgot to mention that.
Wait.



Roger Waters - 12th May!
#24
i'd thought of that, but as far as i'm aware it specifically tells you in the manual not to open the back (i was looking into getting one a while back, still am half-toying with the idea), so i'm guessing the tubes are already fitted.

doesn't mean a shop mightn't have removed them, of course, but again you have to be careful with the electrocution thing, and that it won't void the warranty if you open it.
I'm an idiot and I accidentally clicked the "Remove all subscriptions" button. If it seems like I'm ignoring you, I'm not, I'm just no longer subscribed to the thread. If you quote me or do the @user thing at me, hopefully it'll notify me through my notifications and I'll get back to you.
Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#25
I'm not sure if I missed something in your post,if you didn't write it in your post...
If its a head,you did plug it into a speaker cabinet aswell didn't you?
It might seem stupid,but it has been done.
Seagulls,the chicken of the ocean.

Originally posted by Gunpowder:
Everyone just jumps on the bandwagon and gives the same advice in these situations. You know what? I'm going to be different. Call the firemen.