#1
I recently picked up a Fender FM 212R. It's missing the two speakers. The guy I got it from said he tested it, using the pre-out through a mixer and said it has great sound.

What confuses me is that it doesn't have leads coming out of the unit for the speakers. It does have a 1/4" mono plug which I am unable to determine what it's used for. I don't believe it's for the footswitch, as it's not long enough. According to the manual the footswitch is plugged into the front panel.

I've remove the top screws holding the amp unit in place attempting to pull it away from the cab, but unsuccessful. I was going to see if for some reason the speaker leads were clipped, and possible to re-wire.

Anyone ever worked on these that can help me out?

Thanks in advance.
#2
Well first of all, sorry to disappoint you, but this amp doesn't really have nice tone. The distortion is really weak, but the clean channel is decent.

And yes the speaker leads do come from the inside of the amp unit it self. One wire is black and the other one is white. And regarding the 1/4 mono out, i have no idea what it's for. I have this amp, but mines a 2004 so they might have added that later on. Also, the footswitch is connected from the front.
#3
Quote by nivecon13
Well first of all, sorry to disappoint you, but this amp doesn't really have nice tone. The distortion is really weak, but the clean channel is decent.

And yes the speaker leads do come from the inside of the amp unit it self. One wire is black and the other one is white. And regarding the 1/4 mono out, i have no idea what it's for. I have this amp, but mines a 2004 so they might have added that later on. Also, the footswitch is connected from the front.


You aren't disappointing me. I read the reviews for this unit on UG, before deciding on picking this up. This would be my third amp that I'm on in 11 years of playing. I've never cared much for distortion through amps themselves. I've always relied on pedals or a processor for that.

Based on the photos on Fender's website, I did see the black and white leads that come from the unit for the speakers. If anything, I wanted to try this out see what it was like. If I wanted something better, I would re-sell it (possibly making a little profit from the repair).

Anyone else able to provide me with some information?
#4
Update:

I manage to get the unit out of the cab. I found two screws on the side of the cab still holding it in. Look twice, post once.

After investigation, I found:

- The 1/4" mono jack coming out of the back is wired to the pre-out on the front.
- Two spade terminals marking black and white. I am willing to bet the black and white leads for the speakers attached here.

So I'm guessing whomever used this before the guy before me got it, removed the speakers and used this as a head only. Doesn't explain why he went in and removed the leads altogether.

Does anyone know if I can use a multimeter to test these two terminals with a guitar plugged in before hooking it up to a speaker and ruining something?


Edit:

Can anyone recommend some speakers to toss in this thing if I choose to keep (or sell) once I get it back up and running?
Last edited by thomasgrant at Feb 17, 2007,
#5
Speaker recommendation. The cheapest most hateful thing you've got handy and keep your hand on the power cord when you first plug it in. Just because the preamp "works" to drive the line out does not mean that there isn't a full rail DC offset on the speaker leads waiting to destroy anything you plug into it.

So first thing, power up and measure DC volts between the two speaker leads. YOu should have maybe .05 volts at most. If you give it a signal, like a guitar or an unconnected cord with your thumb on the tip you'll measure some number of AC volts.

AFAIK this is the largest piece of equipment on Fenders "do not fix under warranty" list. They do not consider it worthwhile for repair in the field. That might be telling you something if you do find a problem.

Ron
#6
Thanks for the assistance Ron. From what I can tell, this was made in 2005. I'm the at least the third owner. I wouldn't even consider trying to get it repaired under warranty at this point. I will see about testing the speaker terminals inside this weekend.

Here are some images from inside the unit. I found something rather interesting and leaves me wondering.


Here are the two terminals I believe are for the speaker leads


Possibly two resistors removed? Are those burn marks on the PCB?


...from the other side.
Last edited by thomasgrant at Feb 17, 2007,
#7
I'd be a bit suss with that. Have you actually got sound from it yet?
"Everybody, one day will die and be forgotten. Act and behave in a way that will make life interesting and fun. Find a passion, form relationships, don't be afraid to get out there and fuck what everyone else thinks."
#8
Quote by the_random_hero
I'd be a bit suss with that. Have you actually got sound from it yet?


Say what?? "suss". Speak my language bro.

I've plugged it into my other amplifier as a pre-amp, using the pre-out on the front panel and yes, I do get sound from it.
#9
Quote by thomasgrant
Say what?? "suss". Speak my language bro.

I've plugged it into my other amplifier as a pre-amp, using the pre-out on the front panel and yes, I do get sound from it.


Suss - from the French "suspicoise", meaning to be aware of, to be careful with.
You might want to try and find what those resistors were there for, they might be an important to your amps life.
"Everybody, one day will die and be forgotten. Act and behave in a way that will make life interesting and fun. Find a passion, form relationships, don't be afraid to get out there and fuck what everyone else thinks."
#10
Quote by the_random_hero
Suss - from the French "suspicoise", meaning to be aware of, to be careful with.
You might want to try and find what those resistors were there for, they might be an important to your amps life.


Aha! Suspicious. Now I understand. Yes, I think I want to find out what those were. It looks deliberately cut. And the fact the speaker leads were removed leaves it all too fishy. Grr, I hate to buy a damn schematic from Fender, as they don't have this particular model listed for download.
#11
I don't have a schematic handy here at home, but from the location, I'll guess those are emitter resistors and you are the owner of a very large preamp. Yes, they were deliberately cut. If they were left in you'd be seeing that big DC voltage on the output and/or it'd be spitting fuses out.

The reason I mentioned FMIC warranty policy, is not because you might get Fender to fix it, but to warn you what the people who built this amp think about the possibility of fixing it. Fender does not like the odds and having actually repaired one once, neither do I. You might have a tech give it a go, but even good techs will probably have trouble with this one.

Sorry.
#12
Quote by Ronsonic
I don't have a schematic handy here at home, but from the location, I'll guess those are emitter resistors and you are the owner of a very large preamp. Yes, they were deliberately cut. If they were left in you'd be seeing that big DC voltage on the output and/or it'd be spitting fuses out.

The reason I mentioned FMIC warranty policy, is not because you might get Fender to fix it, but to warn you what the people who built this amp think about the possibility of fixing it. Fender does not like the odds and having actually repaired one once, neither do I. You might have a tech give it a go, but even good techs will probably have trouble with this one.

Sorry.


Why would these have been deliberately cut?

If this is such a "dirty" amp, why does Fender still produce it?
#13
Fender still makes these amps, for the same reason Create, Line 6 and Marshall have their low-end models. Kids at the beginning stages of playing are very attracted to high wattage amps(for example myself a few years ago), and since most are too broke they find these and decide to buy one because of the appealing volume.
#14
See that burn mark on the board under them. They either blew open or overheated badly. Removing them takes large parts of the power amplifier out of circuit so that it won't keep blowing fuses or speakers. My guess is that someone diagnosed it, and then found that Fender wasn't going to pay for it under warranty so he stopped right there. How it got put back together and sold, I don't know. Usually Fender wants them back and doesn't scrap in place.

As for why they make them, some people want a big powerful amp for cheap. Guitar Sinner is listing them at $330. That's a lot of amp for the price. I don't know that I'd call it "dirty" I'd call it a very large example of price point manufacturing.
#15
Quote by nivecon13
Fender still makes these amps, for the same reason Create, Line 6 and Marshall have their low-end models. Kids at the beginning stages of playing are very attracted to high wattage amps(for example myself a few years ago), and since most are too broke they find these and decide to buy one because of the appealing volume.


That's a fair answer. Thanks.

The reason I went for it, was the appeal of the repair. Figured I can keep it or sell it once I look it over and have my way with it.
#16
Quote by Ronsonic
See that burn mark on the board under them. They either blew open or overheated badly.


I knew that had to be a sign of burning and that ought to be a sign that they were cut deliberately. Just don't know enough about guitar amplifiers to know why.

Quote by Ronsonic
Removing them takes large parts of the power amplifier out of circuit so that it won't keep blowing fuses or speakers.


Why should this amp be blowing fuses or speakers at all? That sounds like a faulty product. Yet they keep making these without improvements? Or not?

Quote by Ronsonic
My guess is that someone diagnosed it, and then found that Fender wasn't going to pay for it under warranty so he stopped right there. How it got put back together and sold, I don't know. Usually Fender wants them back and doesn't scrap in place.

As for why they make them, some people want a big powerful amp for cheap. Guitar Sinner is listing them at $330. That's a lot of amp for the price. I don't know that I'd call it "dirty" I'd call it a very large example of price point manufacturing.


Thank you for the continued help Ron. What do you suggest I do to try to get some of my money back from this? Find the schematics, find the proper resistors that are missing, install them and a set of speakers and resell this?
#18
Quote by thomasgrant
I knew that had to be a sign of burning and that ought to be a sign that they were cut deliberately. Just don't know enough about guitar amplifiers to know why.

Why should this amp be blowing fuses or speakers at all? That sounds like a faulty product. Yet they keep making these without improvements? Or not?

Thank you for the continued help Ron. What do you suggest I do to try to get some of my money back from this? Find the schematics, find the proper resistors that are missing, install them and a set of speakers and resell this?


It isn't any more faulty than any other cheaply made guitar amp. Sometimes they fail and the manufacturer replaces it under warranty. A certain amount of failure is expected and planned for. This one was a dud. It happens.

When power amps fail they very often destroy the speakers. That's any solid state power amp. It's nothing unique to this amp. See, there's a LOT more wrong with it than the missing resistors. I'm guessing you don't understand what's going on in there. Those resistors are only the tip of a technologically advanced iceberg, they are in a circuit with the blown transistors that are the major problem. There are at least a few blown transistors, some of the big ones, some of the little ones that drive them and who knows what else. That amp is NOT PROFITABLE TO ATTEMPT REPAIR. I'll say it again, even Fender does not think that it makes sense to try to fix that thing. They will not pay a technician to repair one of those. They throw them in the dumpster and take a fresh one off the boat. That's Fender, the company that made it. If they can't fix it for a sensible price you haven't got a prayer.

If you paid more than like $20 for this thing as a project, yes, take it back. If you were not told that it was blown then take it back. If this came from a repair shop or dealer, PM me and we'll apply some kung fu and see that he treats you right. If this was from a private seller, he's a liar and a thief and you've been hosed. Take such recourse as applies in your jurisdiction.

Of course, I gotta wonder what you were thinking when you saw an amp that was less than a year old with the speakers missing. Did you consider why that might be.

What I very strongly suspect is that this unit failed under warranty, it was replaced, the only valuable part (the speakers) were removed for use in future repairs and then this unit was sold out the back door.

Call Fender with the serial number and ask them. Why not, it's an 800 number and they'll get to the phone eventually. They can at least research where it came from and whether it was a warranty replacement.
#19
Quote by Ronsonic
It isn't any more faulty than any other cheaply made guitar amp. Sometimes they fail and the manufacturer replaces it under warranty. A certain amount of failure is expected and planned for. This one was a dud. It happens.


I understand electronics fail. I've been involved with computers and electronics most of my life. I have however been more involved with the repair and inner workings with computers and not as much with electronics. In all the years that I've bought electronic items and used them for many years, very rarely have I ever had troubles and never had anything needed to be sent off for repair. Maybe I've been very lucky.

When I saw how much these were new, I didn't think it could be considered "cheap" by any means. I trusted that it was reliable enough.

Quote by Ronsonic

Of course, I gotta wonder what you were thinking when you saw an amp that was less than a year old with the speakers missing. Did you consider why that might be.


Hell yea, I was very curious why it was missing speakers and didn't seem all that old. I was intrigued on working on the thing. I researched the model before purchasing and read reviews on it. I thought I'd be safe.

Quote by Ronsonic

What I very strongly suspect is that this unit failed under warranty, it was replaced, the only valuable part (the speakers) were removed for use in future repairs and then this unit was sold out the back door.

Call Fender with the serial number and ask them. Why not, it's an 800 number and they'll get to the phone eventually. They can at least research where it came from and whether it was a warranty replacement.


The guy I got it from said he got it in an Estate sale. He then tested it through the pre-outs, so took that it was in working order.
#20
whatever u do, do not repalce the stock speakers. they are the worst pieces of crap ive ever heard - they are more of bass speakers than guitar speakers, as i had bass even when the bass was on like 3 and the treble on 10. i didnt like the amp at all and wondered how a company like fender could make such a shit amp
#21
Quote by EpiPaul
whatever u do, do not repalce the stock speakers. they are the worst pieces of crap ive ever heard - they are more of bass speakers than guitar speakers, as i had bass even when the bass was on like 3 and the treble on 10. i didnt like the amp at all and wondered how a company like fender could make such a shit amp

The exact reasons were stated above.

Fender is in this business to do one thing, make a profit. This amp is perfect for the demographic it was produced for: kids who want a lot of power without spending a lot. Typically when that kind of situation occurs, you end up with a shit amp. It's just the way things work. Fender makes some decent amps (although I wouldn't buy anything with a PCB in it), but they cost way more than this thing does. Think about that the next time you go out in search of your next amp.

As far as this specific amp, take it back. If the guy says it was in working order (which it most certainly is not), he's bound by a verbal contract. It may be different in your area, but that's the way it is most places.

The long and short of it all is that you won't be able to fix this amp. It's had some huge problems in it that have fried a lot of the parts. Just look at all those burn marks!

If you absolutely cannot get a refund, throw it in the trash. You *could* use it as a preamp, but it'd be a fairly poor one.
American Ash Deluxe Tele
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'65 Fender Deluxe Reverb RI
'53 Fender Deluxe 5C3
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#22
Quote by andrew7667

Fender is in this business to do one thing, make a profit. This amp is perfect for the demographic it was produced for: kids who want a lot of power without spending a lot. Typically when that kind of situation occurs, you end up with a shit amp. It's just the way things work. Fender makes some decent amps (although I wouldn't buy anything with a PCB in it), but they cost way more than this thing does. Think about that the next time you go out in search of your next amp.


I understand that the basic business model is to turn a profit, obviously. But this is ridiculous. This is a problem amp, but they keep making it? I was never quite a big fan of Fender to begin with, but that's just a personal preference. This just puts it over the top. Not the fact that the amplifier I ended up with is a Fender. Not the fact that electronics failed. But the impression I get is that they don't give a f**k.

Quote by andrew7667

As far as this specific amp, take it back. If the guy says it was in working order (which it most certainly is not), he's bound by a verbal contract. It may be different in your area, but that's the way it is most places.

The long and short of it all is that you won't be able to fix this amp. It's had some huge problems in it that have fried a lot of the parts. Just look at all those burn marks!

If you absolutely cannot get a refund, throw it in the trash. You *could* use it as a preamp, but it'd be a fairly poor one.


This unfortunately was purchased through ebay. So I see no way of selling it back to the guy. I'm the one solely responsible for the purchase as it was "as-is". I took the chance on it. I see it didn't quite turn out in my favor. You win some, you lose some.

At this point, I'm starting to see that all I've got is an open cab for some speakers. Which I can use with a head after I find something that won't break down on me.

I don't want to take this into another topic, but can anyone show me a good topic that discusses some good amp heads, or rack mounted units?
#23
All major amp builders don't give a f**k. They're there to sell a product...customer satisfaction is only necessary because it keeps people coming back. Unfortunately, you have to cut corners to make a high-powered amp at a low cost. It isn't Fender's fault. There's no way they can put out 100w+ for $300 without using cheap labor and cheap parts.

I can try to recommend you some amp heads...what are you looking for and what's your price range?
American Ash Deluxe Tele
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'65 Fender Deluxe Reverb RI
'53 Fender Deluxe 5C3
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#24
Quote by andrew7667
All major amp builders don't give a f**k. They're there to sell a product...customer satisfaction is only necessary because it keeps people coming back. Unfortunately, you have to cut corners to make a high-powered amp at a low cost. It isn't Fender's fault. There's no way they can put out 100w+ for $300 without using cheap labor and cheap parts.


I hear ya, and I think that is just shitty. It's my suggestion they don't even make amplifiers in that "range" then if all they're going to do is let go of the quality. Why would they want to let the quality suffer? All for the profit? I had more trust in name brand equipment.

Quote by andrew7667

I can try to recommend you some amp heads...what are you looking for and what's your price range?


As far as what I'm looking for. That might be difficult to answer. I've never really "shopped" for amplifiers before. I can try my best. I am only playing at home at the moment. I anticipate some "basement band" play here in the near future. If that goes well, I am interested in gigging in the next two years. However, based on the uncertainty of that, I don't need to focus on that as a factor. I could always expand into that at a later date.

Price range? That's mildly open. I would say based on what I've stated so far I am not too interested in spending more than $400 right now.
#25
Quote by thomasgrant
I understand that the basic business model is to turn a profit, obviously. But this is ridiculous. This is a problem amp, but they keep making it? I was never quite a big fan of Fender to begin with, but that's just a personal preference. This just puts it over the top. Not the fact that the amplifier I ended up with is a Fender. Not the fact that electronics failed. But the impression I get is that they don't give a f**k.

This unfortunately was purchased through ebay. So I see no way of selling it back to the guy. I'm the one solely responsible for the purchase as it was "as-is". I took the chance on it. I see it didn't quite turn out in my favor. You win some, you lose some.

At this point, I'm starting to see that all I've got is an open cab for some speakers. Which I can use with a head after I find something that won't break down on me.

I don't want to take this into another topic, but can anyone show me a good topic that discusses some good amp heads, or rack mounted units?


Top statements made by customers at my counter:

I borrowed this from a friend and I need to fix it before I give it back.
I loaned this to my friend and he brought it back broke.
My drummer used it.
I just got this on eBay.

You are wrong to think that Fender is any worse than any of the other majors on this aspect. They stand behind that product. If you'd bought it from them, they would've replaced it for you. I believe it's a five year warranty, not bad for a $300 amp. The build quality is no worse than the other bottom-feeders out there.

Like I said, you might call them and see if they'll give you any history on it. If someone's selling SIP units out the back door, they would indeed be interested.

Ron
#26
Quote by Ronsonic
Top statements made by customers at my counter:

I borrowed this from a friend and I need to fix it before I give it back.
I loaned this to my friend and he brought it back broke.
My drummer used it.
I just got this on eBay.


Wow. I'm just a bit shocked.

Quote by Ronsonic

You are wrong to think that Fender is any worse than any of the other majors on this aspect. They stand behind that product. If you'd bought it from them, they would've replaced it for you. I believe it's a five year warranty, not bad for a $300 amp. The build quality is no worse than the other bottom-feeders out there.


I'll admit when I am wrong. Obviously, I need to learn more about the marketing and the industry where it comes to the amplifier market. I did not expect a warranty for this to be that long, nor would I expect them to honor it while I am not the original purchaser.

Quote by Ronsonic

Like I said, you might call them and see if they'll give you any history on it. If someone's selling SIP units out the back door, they would indeed be interested.


As you previously said, a phone call can't hurt. So I will take that avenue and see what information I can get based on this unit and go from there.

Might you be able to recommend an amp head or rack unit based on my previous response?
#27
Quote by thomasgrant
As far as what I'm looking for. That might be difficult to answer. I've never really "shopped" for amplifiers before. I can try my best. I am only playing at home at the moment. I anticipate some "basement band" play here in the near future. If that goes well, I am interested in gigging in the next two years. However, based on the uncertainty of that, I don't need to focus on that as a factor. I could always expand into that at a later date.

Price range? That's mildly open. I would say based on what I've stated so far I am not too interested in spending more than $400 right now.

I was more looking for the sound you're after, as opposed to what you're going to use it for. Of course, there's going to be a big difference between a gigging and a recording amp, but I've always been one to say the sound is far more important than the volume.

What I mean is, if it's too quiet, you mic it; if it's too loud, you attenuate it. If it doesn't have the sound you're looking for, what's the point?

Also, it's important to note whether clean room is important to you.
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'53 Fender Deluxe 5C3
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#28
Quote by andrew7667
I was more looking for the sound you're after, as opposed to what you're going to use it for. Of course, there's going to be a big difference between a gigging and a recording amp, but I've always been one to say the sound is far more important than the volume.


I understand, and why I said it's difficult for me to answer. I enjoy playing a range of styles and sounds. I know that probably just makes it that much more difficult to pick an amp to use. Mostly I play rock from the 70s up to the present. If it helps, I can list specific bands that I play to. I am not concerned with recording at this time.

Quote by andrew7667

What I mean is, if it's too quiet, you mic it; if it's too loud, you attenuate it. If it doesn't have the sound you're looking for, what's the point?


I would agree with you.

Quote by andrew7667

Also, it's important to note whether clean room is important to you.


Haven't really thought about it.