#1
Hello all,

Lets start off by saying "hello." I have been visiting Ultimate-Guitar for YEARS, but I am a new member to the forum.

Earlier this week, I sold my Fender Mustang V half stack to buy a tube head. (Hated that thing!) I ended up with the Bugera 333xl Infinium and a Bugera 4x12 cab. I know, I know. Yes I know Bugera's history. I've heard all of the horror stories. I'm taking a chance!

So far I LOVE this thing. Sounds amazing and actually works out of the box. This is my first valve head experience other than the many I have played in stores.

Anyone else here enjoy their Bugera? I know most of you hate them.

My one questions is, I'm thinking that this thing should have a little more gain. I could be wrong, I know Bugera tubes aren't the greatest. I plan to get some nice 6l6 soon.

I think I may just be nervous because I have never owned a valve head, and the one I got is a Bugera. I'm always going to assume there is something wrong with it haha. Is there any way I can confirm all of my pre amp tubes are operating properly?

Any help/input would be appreciated! (Other than the guys who hate Bugera and aren't nice about it. Nothing wrong with your opinion, but don't bash me because I got a Bugera. I know their history, and don't care how much you want to cram it in my face that they suck. Not all of us can afford a triple rec.)
#3
Quote by psrj32
Not all of us can afford a triple rec.)


No, but if you can afford a new Bugera, you can afford a used Peavey.


Replace all the preamp tubes with JJ ECC83s. You should do that regardless. On an amp like that you'll probably notice a nice change - they usually ship with total shit from the factory.

Don't worry about power tubes. They don't affect your tone on an amp like that in a noticeable enough way to worry about unless you have serious issues. E.G.:, if your amp suffers massive volume loss or just doesn't turn on, then you probably have a power tube issue. Otherwise if it's a gain or tone thing, it's most likely a preamp tube issue.
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#4
Yes, 311... I have already read your extensive post on how terrible Bugera amps are.

Fact is, for a $600 head, the 333xl sounds damn good and is very versatile. I'm a firm believer in "you get what you pay for." This is no exception. It may not be made as well as other amps, but I enjoy the tone. Even if I have to put another $500 into it over the next several years, I'm still ahead.

Aside from Bugera, I know several musicians who have had issues with much higher end amps. Once a company starts off on the wrong foot, you're going to hear more of the bad than the good. I'm confident that there are many satisfied bugera owners who rather than getting online to either bitch about or glorify this amp are sitting in their basements playing it.

Just my 2 cents. Thank you for both the warm welcome, and the help.
#5
Offworld92: thanks for your input.

Yes I could afford a used peavey.. But the area I'm in, good luck. I'd take just as much of a gamble on a used amp as I am the bugera.

I'm not completely oblivious to how valve amps work, which is why I asked about pre amp tubes. I'm not saying I do have an issue, just not EXACTLY what I expected. I have plenty of gain and good tone, I was simply asking if I can confirm everything is working properly.

I plan to replace all tubes, as I said before, I'm aware bugera tubes aren't the greatest. I prefer the sound of the 6l6 over el34.. But the xl only comes with el34s
Last edited by psrj32 at Jun 8, 2013,
#6
Quote by psrj32
Yes, 311... I have already read your extensive post on how terrible Bugera amps are.

Fact is, for a $600 head, the 333xl sounds damn good and is very versatile. I'm a firm believer in "you get what you pay for." This is no exception. It may not be made as well as other amps, but I enjoy the tone. Even if I have to put another $500 into it over the next several years, I'm still ahead.

Aside from Bugera, I know several musicians who have had issues with much higher end amps. Once a company starts off on the wrong foot, you're going to hear more of the bad than the good. I'm confident that there are many satisfied bugera owners who rather than getting online to either bitch about or glorify this amp are sitting in their basements playing it.

Just my 2 cents. Thank you for both the warm welcome, and the help.

First off HNAD reguardless of what others say.

Second your logic is so wrong it is not funny.

I own a 333 head and they do sound good for the money, but I paid $425 new for mine. At least you did buy new because you now have a warranty. New is the only way to buy a Bugera.

Like has been said the pre-amp tubes will make the biggest change in your tone not the power-tubes.

But just so you know you can get used JSX, DSL50/100, Mesa .50 cal for $600 used
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Last edited by Robbgnarly at Jun 8, 2013,
#7
the infinium's the one that has automatic fire extinguishers, right?

just kidding. i mean if you like it, that's great. i've never tried them, and i don't hear too many people complaining about the tone (for the money), it's the reliability which is the concern.
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#8
Correct, I'm not arguing that they are the most reliable amp. But, I have noticed many who talk down on them have never tried/owned one.

I have friends who own bugera.. None of which are the 333 but they love them and have had no issues. One friend uses his 6262 over his 6505.

I may be one of the lucky ones who has no issues.
#9
I have only experienced the non-infinium model of the 333xl but they sound amazing to my ear! My 333xl had no issues while I had it so I can't complain there, especially for the price. The Bugera Cab wont be much to shout about though. But at the end of the day, its whether you like it and if it sounds good for you, then who else cares?

A lot of Bugera's hate is hear-say from people who have never owned one. Apparently they've sorted their quality problems when they realised they goofed up.

I agree with what someone else said though, you could have got a better higher end used amp for the same price. By better I mean aledged reliabilty and build-quality of course.
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#10
why don't you buy a tubescreamer? it will give you additional gain and smooth the sound
#11
Quote by Carl21221
A lot of Bugera's hate is hear-say from people who have never owned one. Apparently they've sorted their quality problems when they realised they goofed up.

No they have not solved the QC issues at all there are still lots of DOA amps arriving. I have seen 3-4 of the Infinium series with severe problems related to the self biasing function. The local music store here actually carried Bugera's for 3-4 months recently in which most of their amps had to be sent back for warranty repairs. the shop droped them like a hot potato

Not getting into a bashing session just don't post BS like that when it is well documented in newer threads on this forum alone.
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#12
i got a v22 it seems to be the least troublesome of their amps and i never had problems with it and it sounds pretty darn good

if oyu like it good just replace the tubes(the preamp tubes are a must id change the powertubes as well fro good measure and keep the stock as a spare)

i really doubt you have a lack of gain but you could try a tubescreamer type pedal in front of the amp would reallly tighten up the sound and high the front end harder for the toune youre looking for
#13
Quote by Robbgnarly
No they have not solved the QC issues at all there are still lots of DOA amps arriving. I have seen 3-4 of the Infinium series with severe problems related to the self biasing function. The local music store here actually carried Bugera's for 3-4 months recently in which most of their amps had to be sent back for warranty repairs. the shop droped them like a hot potato

Not getting into a bashing session just don't post BS like that when it is well documented in newer threads on this forum alone.


Whether you personally have first-hand knowledge doesn't disprove my point of the majority of people just passing on what other people have said without even looking into it first. A lot of people join the "bash the bugera" band-wagon. Note that I said 'Apparently' they have better QC by the way.
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#14
I ordered some new pre amp tubes last night. I'll assume that changing the tubes will void the 90 day tube warranty, but it shouldn't void the warranty on the electronics, right?

Not knowing about the quality of the electronics, the exterior of this thing is built like a brick shit house.

Also, I spoke with a bugera rep (Behringer) after calling their "U.S.A. contact," to get some answers on things. They have supposedly made MORE improvments in the latest builds. This gentleman wasn't extremely specific.

I will say, what he told me makes sense. This head was extremely hard to get ahold of, it was out of stock everywhere untill the end of july. He informed me that they have used their warranty claims to make vast improvements over the last build. They have supposedly amped up their quality standards on tubes.. (I was not aware that Bugera makes and tests their own tubes.) And supposedly have made "circuit improvments."

One thing I was unhappy about is mine has ugly orange, yellow, red, and green lights. Originally all of the lights were blue.. then it was a combination of blue and red, then orange and blue, and now what I have. (or something similar.) This dude claims that the ugly colorful light heads are the newest build design and should have "minimal" issues. We will see. Mine was assembled in April of this year.

Obviously a company can't change everything over night, but it does seem like Bugera is making a quality effort in making their amps more and more reliable. Their customer service is obviously excellent, and I have only heard the best about their warranty claims, so I'm not the slightest bit worried.
#15
If you change the tubes, you still have the factory warranty. You just do not have the 90 tube warranty on the new tubes.

Bugera does not make tubes, they buy tubes in bulk (mostly Chinese) and rebrand them like Grovetubes, Ruby tubes and a lot of other companies

I have been one of the fortunate people, my 333 is 4 yrs old and still works fine. I did have some issues, but they were taken care of fairly easily.

Just be careful of the foot switch plug end, the plastic guide breaks easily and then it is a pain to plug in with out bending the pins.
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#16
This guy implied that Bugera makes their own tubes. A lot of people say that they just slap their name on chinese bulk. Others say they use Sovteks with their name. This is all hear-say. Please show evidence if you have it.

I may have misunderstood .. who knows. The only reputable answer regarding bugera tubes I can find simply states that they have a tube testing facility, but doesnt say whether or not they make their tubes.

Guitar World Magazine:
"Bugera boasts an impressive in-house tube testing facility. I visited the Behringer/Bugera factory last November, and the large tube testing room was abuzz with people busily testing tubes using special burn-in and matching rigs. They also use actual Bugera combos for critical testing of microphonics. The 12AX7s are carefully graded by their resistance to microphonics, and they’re selected for their final use accordingly. Uli Behringer said only five percent of the 12AX7s are selected for the most critical “A” grade applications. More good news: Bugera also plans to offer a full line of replacement tubes, so keep your eyes pealed for some sweet deals on great tubes."
#17
No they do not make tubes, like that article said they test tubes to get what they want.

As far as I know there are only a few tube manufactures in the world China has the Shugang factory(s)
there are the New Sensor factories in Slovakia and Russia (I think they also have a Chinese factory). New sensor owns JJ, Sovtek, Electro Harmonics, Tung Sol, Gold Lion, new Mullard and Svetlana.
Then there is the SED =C= company which is in Russia and they pretty much make the best tubes currently produced, but they are extremely expensive

Tubes used to be made in many different countries all over the world, now they are made in 3
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#18
Ok, thank you for the information. I was unaware that there were so few tube manufacturers.
#19
Quote by psrj32
Yes, 311... I have already read your extensive post on how terrible Bugera amps are.

Which post?

Also, I wasn't attacking you bud. I only marked the thread for later as I was driving and couldn't really post much. HNAD.


Quote by psrj32
But, I have noticed many who talk down on them have never tried/owned one.

I've played several Bugeras in my time but to say that I (we) can't voice an opinion based on all of the 'fail' threads we've had on this site is bogus. So, if I played/owned a 333XL Infinium and it didn't fail then am I supposed to say they are rock solid and there are no issues?

Quote by Carl21221
I have only experienced the non-infinium model of the 333xl but they sound amazing to my ear!

Agreed. They do sound amazing.

Quote by Carl21221
A lot of Bugera's hate is hear-say from people who have never owned one. Apparently they've sorted their quality problems when they realised they goofed up.

Again, do I have to own one in order to be able to make an educated decision on their failure rate. I mean, I can read. Yes, there happen to be more Bugera users here on UG than other guitar/amp web sites.

Quote by Robbgnarly
Not getting into a bashing session just don't post BS like that when it is well documented in newer threads on this forum alone.

+1

Quote by Carl21221
Whether you personally have first-hand knowledge doesn't disprove my point of the majority of people just passing on what other people have said without even looking into it first. A lot of people join the "bash the bugera" band-wagon. Note that I said 'Apparently' they have better QC by the way.

Wouldn't that be just as much hearsay as the reverse?

Quote by psrj32
I ordered some new pre amp tubes last night. I'll assume that changing the tubes will void the 90 day tube warranty, but it shouldn't void the warranty on the electronics, right?

Early on that would have been a problem but I don't think so today. Robbgnarley would probably know best so I believe whatever he says.

Quote by psrj32
Obviously a company can't change everything over night, but it does seem like Bugera is making a quality effort in making their amps more and more reliable. Their customer service is obviously excellent, and I have only heard the best about their warranty claims, so I'm not the slightest bit worried.

You are living in a dream world.

They have not changed much at all over the years. I do not consider their amps more reliable. Their customer service is not that great IMO. You should be worried about their warranty claims.

One of the Bugera Customer Service representatives for North America came on UG last year and proclaimed that he would be happy to answer any questions that we may have and to my knowledge - did not respond to a single inquiry.

Quote by psrj32
This guy implied that Bugera makes their own tubes. A lot of people say that they just slap their name on chinese bulk. Others say they use Sovteks with their name. This is all hear-say. Please show evidence if you have it.
s."

They don't make their own tubes.

Again, it is the false claims that everything is great at Bugera that make me stand up for those that purchased one (the new Infiniums in particular) and it crapped out on them. It is the false claims that perpetuate a false sense of security for those in the market for a new amp.

That GW article reads like someone who got paid a bonus to say that. Anyone in their right mind would not write that. I bet a huge part of Bugera/Behringers issues have been the crappy tubes they use. They are using what's left in other peoples bin as cast- aways not rigorously testing all tubes.

If you had followed the NGD rules with 2 of the 3 things required (Review, Pics, Clips) and stayed off the Bandwagon that everything is great at Bugera - then I probably would have just said HNGD tonight and moved about my business.

Good luck with your amp.
Last edited by 311ZOSOVHJH at Jun 9, 2013,
#20
Thank you for actually putting an effort into that post.

Not sure what NGD or HNGD stands for. (Sorry if I should.)

I did a ton of research on this head before buying it. I read as many reviews as I could find, watched YouTube clips and reviews for weeks. (User "dingle1" on YouTube is very convincing.) I would say that the amount of good reviews I found even out with the bad reviews.

All of your points are valid, and I respect your opinion. Not that I disagree, I just obviously think differently.

Just because a dodge neon is made cheaper than a viper, doesn't mean that with proper care and maintenance.. It won't last you a long time.

I work on manufacturing equipment for a living, mainly on the electrical side of things. I lack experience with amplifiers, but if I cracked one open I imagine I would catch on pretty quick. More than likely if I have an issue that i can troubleshoot myself, I will fix it
myself.

I may completely change my perspective if/when this thing torches itself. Who knows.
#22
Nad!!!!!!!
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#23
Quote by psrj32
Thank you for actually putting an effort into that post.

Not sure what NGD or HNGD stands for. (Sorry if I should.)

I did a ton of research on this head before buying it. I read as many reviews as I could find, watched YouTube clips and reviews for weeks. (User "dingle1" on YouTube is very convincing.) I would say that the amount of good reviews I found even out with the bad reviews.

All of your points are valid, and I respect your opinion. Not that I disagree, I just obviously think differently.

Just because a dodge neon is made cheaper than a viper, doesn't mean that with proper care and maintenance.. It won't last you a long time.

I work on manufacturing equipment for a living, mainly on the electrical side of things. I lack experience with amplifiers, but if I cracked one open I imagine I would catch on pretty quick. More than likely if I have an issue that i can troubleshoot myself, I will fix it
myself.

I may completely change my perspective if/when this thing torches itself. Who knows.

The thing with Bugera's isn't maintenance.
The old ones failed due to a design flaw.
They say the new ones are fixed, but the failure rate is well documented.
Especially by 311 who has compiled all of the failed bugera threads we've seen.

Bugeras are good amps for the price, but they aren't built very soundly.

HN_D stands for Happy New _ Day
Where G is guitar/gear
A is amp
P is pedal
etc
#24
Quote by psrj32
Yes I could afford a used peavey.. But the area I'm in, good luck. I'd take just as much of a gamble on a used amp as I am the bugera.
This statement in remarkably invalid. Peavey's are built like an absolute tank and use quality time-tested components throughout. There are thousands of Peavey examples floating around that are still kicking strong decades after they were built (including my VTM). Peavey's build quality isn't a concern (at least on the American models)

Bugera on the other hand has a very well documented failure rate here on UG alone, as the vast majority of users on this site are beginner/intermediate guitarists with a minimal budget. A lot of recent failures too within the last year. It's not the fact that its built in China either, Jet City's QC is remarkable and built on an industrial-grade platform with hearty, well spaced components. Bugera just has a very shoddy and subpar build to them, like a cheap DVD player.


HNAD though , they definitely have 'that tone'. However I would strongly recommend returning the Bugera and getting a used JSX. eBay and Guitar Center's online used selection should be teaming with them as there's a bunch of them out there. Both places come with a 30 day warranty if you land a lemon as well (which is VERY unlikely)
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Last edited by Flux'D at Jun 10, 2013,
#25
Guitar Center has surpassed eBay and Craigslist as my go-to for used gear. Their prices are really good, and the convenience is all there - not having to win a bid, or have to try to meet up with someone. It's great.
Spin 'round carousel when your horse isn't screwed in.

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#26
I'll take into consideration the option of a used amp. I have 30 days to return.

Actually, if this thing ends up not turning out well, I'll fix it and keep as a back up.

Also, I meant maintenance in more of a "fixing the broken stuff" kind of way. Electrical components are cheap. Even the "high end" components aren't THAT expensive. Plus I get excellent discounts on anything electrical through work.. From a variety of distributors. This is why I said earlier on in the thread, even if I have to put more money in it to replace poor quality components with better quality ones.. I'm still ahead and have a good sounding amp.

Will update on any failures I may encounter.
#27
I'm assuming you spent a little over $850 for your Bugera half stack.

For the same price you could get a used JSX and a Line 6 412 w/ V30s. And that would be a KILLER rig.

http://www.guitarcenter.com/In-Store-Used-USED-PEAVEY-JSX-AMP-HEAD-108985169-i3147632.gc

http://www.guitarcenter.com/In-Store-Used-USED-LINE-6-412VS-4X12-GUITAR-CAB-W-V30-SPEAKERS-109053769-i3175886.gc

That Line 6 cab in general being only $300 opens a lot of options for heads.
Spin 'round carousel when your horse isn't screwed in.

My band:
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(For fans of Death/Groove/Prog Metal)

Ibanez RGA42E
Ibanez S420
LTD H-301
Ibanez RG520
Peavey Predator USA
Douglas Grendel 725
Line 6 Pod HD500X
#28
Just make sure you know what you're doing if you open the thing up. You may have fixed amps before, not sure. Just warning that filter caps can be deadly if not drained properly.
This is the life we must choose.

Quote by Cathbard
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#29
Quote by TremontiAddict
Just make sure you know what you're doing if you open the thing up. You may have fixed amps before, not sure. Just warning that filter caps can be deadly if not drained properly.

The only reason I'm posting in this thread is to give this post more attention. Make sure you know your shit before opening that thing.
#30
Quote by psrj32
even if I have to put more money in it to replace poor quality components with better quality ones.. I'm still ahead and have a good sounding amp.
How would you 'be ahead'? What are you ahead of?

If a component fails and you replace it yourself, you will have voided the warranty. Or alternatively you could send it in for warranty work and be out of an amp for a few weeks. After that hassle you still have a cheap copy of a proven workhorse that wouldn't have needed cheap components replaced to start with. Wash, rinse, and repeat every time something fails. The PCB's in Bugeras are rather thin and wouldn't take much to lift/burn a trace either, in which case you'd spend time rigging up a fix or have to order a new populated PCB from Bugera.

Or, for the exact same cash, you could buy the amp from which it was copied from and have a proven, robust workhorse built by a reputable company that has produced durable products for 40+ years.


EDIT: Depending on what component failed it could take other things out with it, such as a transformer. And those things aren't cheap.
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2006 Fender All-American Partscaster
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[thread="1166208"]Gibsons Historic Designs[/thread]
Last edited by Flux'D at Jun 10, 2013,
#31
my v22 was a fine amp. held up well for years. however, i have heard the V series are the better / more reliable designed in the bugera line.

new tubes will not fix your gain problem. perhaps change character, sound better, but will not add more gain. some tubes can lower gain, but if your using 12ax7s, good ones, you cannot raise gain from one to the next.
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#32
My buddy has had this amp for about 7 months and has played 8 or so shows with it. So far no issues except that the foot switch that came with it broke after about 2 months. It's the only bugera I've had any experience with but it sounds great, well he plays metal, I don't know how it handles other styles. Anyway, as long as it doesn't combust you'll be very happy with it. Still might wanna look into used amps while you are within the 30 days though. I have 3 peavey tube amps and not 1 problem.
#34
Slightly off topic...What do you gents think about the egnator vengeance?
#35
frickin' killer amp


dark, killer distortion, killer cleans, killer versatility

made in China - I've heard the MIC Egnaters have had some QC issues (to be fair)

bottom line - I'd buy one.

I got the opportunity to play one in the GC loud room. I recorded it.
Last edited by 311ZOSOVHJH at Jun 10, 2013,
#36
Guitar center in a city near me has a new one.. I will go play it this weekend, and if I like it I'll pick it over the bug era. I can't hardly find a flat out bad review on it.