Carvin Audio is BACK!

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Doctor Turn
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Re: Carvin Audio is BACK!

Postby Doctor Turn » Fri Jan 26, 2018 7:05 am

2Plus2isChicken wrote:Wherever the EQ switch is located, I specifically remember it being assignable to only one channel or the other, not both. The new pedal allows both.


Well, yeah, that's the idea of the "assign" switch-- so you can assign it to the channel that "needs" it... ie create two highly contrasting channels, say a nice midragey, fat clean jazzy tone... then you hit your footswitch and via the EQ kicking in our out depending on where it's assigned, you can say have a nice scooped searing solo overdrive. That's the great beauty of the amp that it is so versatile and you can have two such highly different tones at the tap of a toe.

If you want both channels to have the same identical sound, only one overdriven and the other clean, I would just set my 4 band parametric EQ on the pots where I needed it, and keep the EQ at 0db so it has no effect on the parametric when you change channels. You don't really "need" the graphic to set your tone, but it's there specifically to apply offsetting tweaks versus the parametric when you change channels and gain kicks in and affects your tone in a way that requires a zip and a zap to find that sweet pocket. Most people find that a bunch of preamp overdrive hitting their original "perfect" clean tone is going to require some sort of adjustment, usually somewhere around the mids.. thus the graphic at your disposal.

But if you don't need to use it, just keep it at zero. Problem solved.
Carvin Weaponry:
1985 DC150K (koa) Stereo, M22N/M22SD w/black hardware.
1985 100 Watt X Amp 2 x 12 combo (XV212) upgraded w/ 2 Vintage 30's
...and other gear.

https://soundcloud.com/the_heavy_clouds

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Re: Carvin Audio is BACK!

Postby wickid » Fri Jan 26, 2018 7:33 am

2Plus2isChicken wrote:Wherever the EQ switch is located, I specifically remember it being assignable to only one channel or the other, not both. The new pedal allows both.


Yup - that is an improvement on the pedal.

When I got my series IV, I was skeptical about the shared knob EQ, but was very pleased how that really works on this amp. Those big 6L6 glass bottles on mine really make a full, round, yet clear and chimey clean. That's 1 thing I'd hope the pedal could get close to (the demo gets a nice clean, but not sure if that's recorded direct?).
I'd love to have the pedal so I could have both that and my V3M out in my living room as easy (and lazy) options, but the prices?? [ Hmm, do some sort of A/B setup with both preamps going to the FX return of the V3M ... maybe be able to use the reverb on that amp for the X1...??? :think: ... That might be my ultimate setup, the X100 clean and drive + the V3M normal drive and saturated overdrive ... oooh.]
Now if that was the suggested retail and it ran like 1/2 to 2/3 that ... but going by the Vai pedal, I don't hold out hope.
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Re: Carvin Audio is BACK!

Postby Doctor Turn » Fri Jan 26, 2018 7:52 am

The pedal has no power tubes, ie no 6l6 tubes. Just the 12AX drive section and the eq. If you're going to fit 4 giant 6l6 tubes in there with the preamp section, well you no longer have a pedal, you have a full amp. You'd need to hugely expand the (already big) size to fit power tubes in there.! (12ax7 tubes are small little guys like the height of your pinky.)
Carvin Weaponry:
1985 DC150K (koa) Stereo, M22N/M22SD w/black hardware.
1985 100 Watt X Amp 2 x 12 combo (XV212) upgraded w/ 2 Vintage 30's
...and other gear.

https://soundcloud.com/the_heavy_clouds

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Re: Carvin Audio is BACK!

Postby wickid » Fri Jan 26, 2018 8:55 am

Doctor Turn wrote:The pedal has no power tubes, ie no 6l6 tubes. Just the 12AX drive section and the eq. If you're going to fit 4 giant 6l6 tubes in there with the preamp section, well you no longer have a pedal, you have a full amp. You'd need to hugely expand the (already big) size to fit power tubes in there.! (12ax7 tubes are small little guys like the height of your pinky.)


If that was at me, I'm aware of that, its obvious. I was just extoling my X100 IV head virtues, and that may not have been obvious.
I was just considering if the pedal could even approximate anything like that - that demo sounded pretty good on some of the cleans actually, and it looked like he had most of the tone knobs on 5. But yeah, 12ax7s with no big bottles behind it ... ha. ... 1W SS power amp ... haha. Might be good for some quick plug n play noodling, ... maybe.
And even if I powered it with my V3M with EL84s, ... over time I'm starting to feel I'm not so much a fan of those tubes either.
Proud Carvin owner since 1985! My Carvin gear time capsule...

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Dont miss the purple CT6!
(Any photobucket links are probably now broken. Grrrrrr!!!)

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Re: Carvin Audio is BACK!

Postby UnexplodedCow » Fri Jan 26, 2018 9:58 am

I know people love ripping on solid state stuff, but the X100b was *full* of opamps for those EQ knobs and sliders, plus I believe the effects loop used a transistor based driver. I didn't care for the distortion on them (can also be due to active EQ tweaks), but cleans are what I use for amp testing at first. If it sounds bad clean, I'm very likely going to hate it dirty, and I've not found an exception to that rule so far.

The X100b has a fantastic clean sound, despite all those solid state pieces in it. It ain't all tube, not even 50% in terms of how many driving stages are used to push the signal through the amp. That isn't the issue. Carvin build a Marshall type of amp, and augmented it with op amps. This is not a problem to me, at all. Just want to make people aware that these are really a hybrid pre-amp going into a tube power amp. Besides that, amp designs are often sectioned off for pre, power, and supply circuits of the amp. Makes for easier troubleshooting, and helps one understand that a pre just feeds the power. You can make 'em modular, or place it all on the PCB. Heck, Sano used to make some amps for cordavox that had the pre section up on top, running power and signal wires from the power supply and power amp section at the bottom. Super easy amps to work with and even plug in a separate pre amp if one wants a different sound.

I'm thinking if one runs these pedals into the return line of an X100b amp, they can do a better comparison of the real thing vs this new pedal design. My guess: they're going to sound very similar, if not the same. I'd be willing to do some tests, but would need at least a temporary donation (preferably permanent) of both an X100 amp and X1 pedal.
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Re: Carvin Audio is BACK!

Postby spudmunkey » Fri Jan 26, 2018 10:50 am

UnexplodedCow wrote:I'm thinking if one runs these pedals into the return line of an X100b amp, they can do a better comparison of the real thing vs this new pedal design.


That's a fantastic idea. I wonder if anyone did it with the Legacy? :think:

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Re: Carvin Audio is BACK!

Postby Doctor Turn » Fri Jan 26, 2018 10:58 am

UnexplodedCow wrote: It ain't all tube, not even 50% in terms of how many driving stages are used to push the signal through the amp. .


The only primary non tube function on this amp that's worthy of note as a differentiator (where other manufacturers might resort to an additional tube) is the reverb circuit, which is solid state driven. But I don't notice a big difference, unless you like that big splashy kind of spring reverb. The vintage X100b sounds more like a plate reverb to me, which is really nice. It's a nice smooth shimmery kind of verb. That nice rich 6L6 clean is full of the kind of musical poetry you look for, so you get all the mojo you need.
Carvin Weaponry:
1985 DC150K (koa) Stereo, M22N/M22SD w/black hardware.
1985 100 Watt X Amp 2 x 12 combo (XV212) upgraded w/ 2 Vintage 30's
...and other gear.

https://soundcloud.com/the_heavy_clouds

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Re: Carvin Audio is BACK!

Postby UnexplodedCow » Fri Jan 26, 2018 11:56 am

Doctor Turn wrote:
UnexplodedCow wrote: It ain't all tube, not even 50% in terms of how many driving stages are used to push the signal through the amp. .


The only primary non tube function on this amp that's worthy of note as a differentiator (where other manufacturers might resort to an additional tube) is the reverb circuit, which is solid state driven. But I don't notice a big difference, unless you like that big splashy kind of spring reverb. The vintage X100b sounds more like a plate reverb to me, which is really nice. It's a nice smooth shimmery kind of verb. That nice rich 6L6 clean is full of the kind of musical poetry you look for, so you get all the mojo you need.


And it's a good reverb circuit. Carvin uses a solid state FX loop driver in many of their amps, and the only complaint I have is that after a long time it may go out. Not a big issue to fix, and it still sounds great. The signal goes through no less than 11 op amps, plus a handful of discrete transistors. Yet it still gets a great sound. I like the amp as a proof of concept that an amp can sound great as a hybrid pre design, pushing a well built output side.
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Re: Carvin Audio is BACK!

Postby bossboy2 » Mon Feb 12, 2018 10:13 pm

Any chance they'll offer the effects processors again?
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Re: Carvin Audio is BACK!

Postby Cynical » Mon Feb 12, 2018 11:59 pm

UnexplodedCow wrote:I know people love ripping on solid state stuff, but the X100b was *full* of opamps for those EQ knobs and sliders, plus I believe the effects loop used a transistor based driver. I didn't care for the distortion on them (can also be due to active EQ tweaks), but cleans are what I use for amp testing at first. If it sounds bad clean, I'm very likely going to hate it dirty, and I've not found an exception to that rule so far.

The X100b has a fantastic clean sound, despite all those solid state pieces in it. It ain't all tube, not even 50% in terms of how many driving stages are used to push the signal through the amp. That isn't the issue. Carvin build a Marshall type of amp, and augmented it with op amps. This is not a problem to me, at all. Just want to make people aware that these are really a hybrid pre-amp going into a tube power amp. Besides that, amp designs are often sectioned off for pre, power, and supply circuits of the amp. Makes for easier troubleshooting, and helps one understand that a pre just feeds the power. You can make 'em modular, or place it all on the PCB. Heck, Sano used to make some amps for cordavox that had the pre section up on top, running power and signal wires from the power supply and power amp section at the bottom. Super easy amps to work with and even plug in a separate pre amp if one wants a different sound.

I'm thinking if one runs these pedals into the return line of an X100b amp, they can do a better comparison of the real thing vs this new pedal design. My guess: they're going to sound very similar, if not the same. I'd be willing to do some tests, but would need at least a temporary donation (preferably permanent) of both an X100 amp and X1 pedal.

Since I'm not familiar with the X100b, were any of those solid-state components designed to be clipping sources, and do they hold up well when hit with a big signal (from hot pickups, a boost/OD pedal, gain/volume run high, etc)? IME, solid state is totally fine when everything is clean; it's when distortion comes into play, whether intentional (i.e., an op-amp + diode setup in a distortion pedal) or unintentional (turning a Marshall Mosfet into a motorcycle engine by slamming the front end with a huge signal from a boost) that tubes become advantageous.

(Also, I may be mistaking you for someone else here, but I thought you were a Peavy 5150 fan? Not exactly an amp known for sounding good clean...)

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Re: Carvin Audio is BACK!

Postby UnexplodedCow » Tue Feb 13, 2018 2:14 am

Nope, the solid state parts are not clipping, but used for the active EQ (among other things), but the primary amplification and clipping are all tube based.

I like the 5150 for its dirty sounds, but clean it won't do well (the EQ sounds all wrong). They also sound a bit ear fatiguing after a while for me. I much prefer the Legacy series since it does what I like on both clean and dirty. I'd love to try a full size V3 and see how it compares. The X100 is the inverse: I love the cleans but never cared for the dirt, though the head I owned had been modified in an unknown way. I actually prefer the carpeted versions rather than the tolex ones.

As for solid state clipping, I think it depends on design. A good opamp setup can clip more gracefully. I've mentioned ISP several times, and still think they have it down for getting a great mild to wild distortion. I once tried my theta pedal in front of my V16 (heresy) and found the pedal acted more like a harmonic booster. Very pretty stuff when clean. Kick in the dirty side dialed way low, and it gets a rather smooth overdrive. I owned the predecessor to the theta at one time, and that amp reminded me so much of a hot rodded jcm, and I had one around to directly compare. JFET opamps work well, it would seem.
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Re: Carvin Audio is BACK!

Postby Doctor Turn » Tue Feb 13, 2018 1:40 pm

I forgot about this thread.

Nobody thinks of the X100b as a "hybrid" design simply because there are points where (as elsewhere) non tube technology (or op amps, FET/ transistors, etc) is used for transmission of signal.

The only two points of transmission where tubes weren't used (one already mentioned) where the option to use them was feasible was the 1) verb tank, and 2) rectification. But for someone to claim an amp to be a "hybrid design," you usually wind up with one of those jobs with a single preamp tube for "real tube distortion" with power handling done with solid state circuitry. A "tube amp" is plain and simple an amp with a tube preamp section and tube power output section. All the rest of a tube amp relies on... common audio technology. :lol:
Carvin Weaponry:
1985 DC150K (koa) Stereo, M22N/M22SD w/black hardware.
1985 100 Watt X Amp 2 x 12 combo (XV212) upgraded w/ 2 Vintage 30's
...and other gear.

https://soundcloud.com/the_heavy_clouds

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Re: Carvin Audio is BACK!

Postby Doctor Turn » Tue Feb 13, 2018 6:41 pm

Speaking of... WHOAH! Now this is rare, I've only seen this once before: a series IV X100B gussied up with the head flipped upside down and stuck into a combo 2 x 12 cab to make a Series IV simulation of the XV212 that never was! Complete w the extra pot toggles:

Image

Image

Compare the panel to the panel on my vintage item (mostly visible:)
Image

Link on verb: https://reverb.com/item/10272987-carvin-x100b-2009

What's cool is the face of the speaker weave-cover has the same vintage badge as the old XV212's.

Normally they just sold the heads and offered separate 2 x 12 cabs.
Carvin Weaponry:
1985 DC150K (koa) Stereo, M22N/M22SD w/black hardware.
1985 100 Watt X Amp 2 x 12 combo (XV212) upgraded w/ 2 Vintage 30's
...and other gear.

https://soundcloud.com/the_heavy_clouds

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Re: Carvin Audio is BACK!

Postby UnexplodedCow » Wed Feb 14, 2018 5:03 am

Hmm, that looks factory, too, with the modern markings on the back. Crazy, and I had no idea this was even done in a limited amount.

Also, the price is very affordable, with reasonable shipping for a combo. Good find!
We are entitled to our own, wrong, opinions.

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Re: Carvin Audio is BACK!

Postby Doctor Turn » Wed Feb 14, 2018 10:19 am

It really is, and the price is classic X100B insanity, regardless of the era or tube pedigree. I've only seen a Series IV X100b flipped into a XV212 recreation only once before, and I have a feeling they were just from a prototype run. Doubt they made more than 5 of them. They usually just pushed them out w the 2 x 12 separate cabs. (EDIT: I think these came loaded, the Series IV that is, w the Celestion Rocket 50. :lol: )

These things are beasts that can be made to sound like virtually anything, from pristine Fender cleans to apocolyptic recto chugs (I was fooling around last night with it by throwing a tube screamer on the floor, rolling the gain stage all the way over and pushing the low end to get that crushing thunk, and it gets very close, even the lower gain Series III originals), but because guys--I'll say it again for the thousandth time--have difficulty dialing in tone with active tone pots + a 5 band graphic + powerful presence circuit, it gets labeled as an amp with "off" tone... so the price is always hugely affordable. Last month I was having a convo on FB w a guy who has one for YEARS but said he never really jibed with it, and when I went thru the whole "start your tone pots on 5/active circuit blah blah blah" his first response was "what are active tone pots?" :lol: I had to go thru the whole thing w him.

If I was in the market for an X100B, a 2 x 12 combo would always be my preference, and these combo designs are the shizzle. I remember when I bought mine, I had a friend of a friend who had a full stack, which I played and was totally blown away. Then I went over to Focus II (rare auth. Carvin dealer in NY back then) and played a half stack and a XV212 and was immediately sold on the combo. The amp is already so earth-quaking loud, a half stack seemed redundant and clumsy and there wasn't much of a loss in impact or volume. (And a full stack was way beyond my needs and wallet). These 2 x 12 combos are a great deal louder than many half stacks I've played. Those who own them or even the musclebound XT112 w the EVM 12" (devastating speaker) know what I'm talking about. Pure savagery!
Last edited by Doctor Turn on Wed Feb 14, 2018 10:22 am, edited 3 times in total.
Carvin Weaponry:
1985 DC150K (koa) Stereo, M22N/M22SD w/black hardware.
1985 100 Watt X Amp 2 x 12 combo (XV212) upgraded w/ 2 Vintage 30's
...and other gear.

https://soundcloud.com/the_heavy_clouds

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Re: Carvin Audio is BACK!

Postby Brian Johnston » Wed Feb 14, 2018 10:20 am

Their new pre-amp pedal interests me, but two weeks back I had an issue with the VLD1 legacy drive... it's OK now, but I emailed for assistance and to this day never got a response. It makes one nervous for another purchase.

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Re: Carvin Audio is BACK!

Postby UnexplodedCow » Wed Feb 14, 2018 10:25 am

Totally agree on a 2x12 setup (or combo). A large, ported cabinet sounds insanely close to a 4x12, and is much lighter/more compact.

I may have to fool around with an X100 series IV again, and see how it goes. It could have been the mods my old one had rendered it crud, though the guy I sold it to was stupidly happy that he snagged one, and I received a Peavey Duel212 in return; best tremolo/reverb I've heard in any amp, ever. Also bone-crushingly loud (212 combo) that went from super clean Fender territory out to a fun semi-heavy gain that went into warp with a dirt pedal in front (almost 5150 level, but with a better EQ).

The active tone controls make a ton of sense to me.
We are entitled to our own, wrong, opinions.

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Do or do not; there is no understand.

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Re: Carvin Audio is BACK!

Postby Doctor Turn » Wed Feb 14, 2018 11:05 am

There's also a guy claims to have a 1985 that is definitely NOT a1985, first and foremost owing to the badge is later eighties, earliest.

But this guy has a legit Series III original, if you're inclined in that direction. I think the reverb on these are superior, with physical Hammond tanks with three springs instead of two, and that famous clean channel offers much more pristine headroom via 4 6l6's. El34's start breaking up muuuch earlier.

https://reverb.com/item/8603712-carvin- ... ntage-head
Carvin Weaponry:
1985 DC150K (koa) Stereo, M22N/M22SD w/black hardware.
1985 100 Watt X Amp 2 x 12 combo (XV212) upgraded w/ 2 Vintage 30's
...and other gear.

https://soundcloud.com/the_heavy_clouds

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Re: Carvin Audio is BACK!

Postby texastoast » Wed Feb 14, 2018 3:39 pm

Doctor Turn wrote:Speaking of... WHOAH! Now this is rare, I've only seen this once before: a series IV X100B gussied up with the head flipped upside down and stuck into a combo 2 x 12 cab to make a Series IV simulation of the XV212 that never was! Complete w the extra pot toggles:



Looks like mine. Unless there is something I am missing it is a regular production head.
amplificador-carvin-x100b-212-combo-valvulado-trocas-13839-MLB4595070585_072013-O.jpg
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Re: Carvin Audio is BACK!

Postby Doctor Turn » Wed Feb 14, 2018 4:06 pm

Yup, yours looks like the exact same as the one on sale. I never saw them on the Carvin website during the Series IV years, but that doesn't mean they weren't available. I just have only seen a total of three (Series IV 2 x 12 combo cabs)--and one of them was mentioned as a one off for a trade show, that I saw years ago. (and yours is the third!)

And yes of course, as always, it's just as I said a regular X100B flipped upside down, as were the originals like mine. But I only just noticed yesterday that they cut the channel 2 input on the Series IV.
Carvin Weaponry:
1985 DC150K (koa) Stereo, M22N/M22SD w/black hardware.
1985 100 Watt X Amp 2 x 12 combo (XV212) upgraded w/ 2 Vintage 30's
...and other gear.

https://soundcloud.com/the_heavy_clouds


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