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Izen Ears

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Everything posted by Izen Ears

  1. I’ve not seen that wood bridge before! That must change the tone compared to steel? Here are the amps Blood Reef uses!
  2. YESSSSS! You went to the Rendevous Ballroom that’s AWESOME!!! I am super jealous. Any recordings of that garage band? I am so grateful for your posts, thanks a lot! So great to read. Btw here’s the rig, but just this past weekend I picked up a 2x15 JBL cab that I’m going to replace that 15” tone ring cab with. The reverb is a 1963 tank with a new cab, and the showman is a 1962 but it also has a new cab. The only original cab is the 15” tone ring.
  3. I mean it does sound great, but there’s a warmness to the tanks. I bring one to shows as a backup! Hey I forgot to say I enjoyed your tune way upstream! One of the phrases is very similar to something in one of my recent tunes. The tone reminds me of 1991 where me and a pal played surf through a JCM-900! Dan Izen
  4. I’ve got two of the pre-made ones. Some folks got really crazy with building the kit version. They use MosFET and sound good, but once I got the tube tanks those are loaned to pals! The tube tanks just have more bass and warmth. Many surf folk use these + Quilters and a small cab...
  5. Man, I’m kind of on an “alternative to JBL” quest. Got some ‘63 Oxford 12M6 but apparently the 12T6 speakers are better matched to the Twins. I wonder if the 12T6 is an updated version of the 12M6s with more wattage? I have a pair of 12” Weber Californias and they sound pretty good. They don’t have the “gut punch” of the JBLs tho. But steel strings are waaaaaaaaay too bright for me. I’m a rogue and use acoustic-electric strings! They’re 1/2 bronze and 1/2 nickel-plated steel. They are perfectly “not piercing.” I’m almost at the point where I want to try flats, but I just love those DR Zebra round wounds. Both the JM and Jag have Mastery bridges, which I’m happy with... Crap I keep forgetting to post some photos...
  6. YEAH!!!!! Thanks for posting this is fascinating!!! Man! I am jealous. If you were there at that time, you could have found f-ing prototypes!! They do that, every so often a guitar factory will dump a few one-offs and prototypes into local music stores. I’ve even read about folks regularly finding guitars and parts in dumpters! I have some questions if you don’t mind, sir. Did you notice a big difference after the Beatles broke? Do you remember any shows or bands in particular? Where were you the first time you heard Penetration? Do you know how cool I think being there was?!! Am I ever going to travel in time and see surf on tv? In other news, I’ve lost two cats in the last six months, super sad. But weirdly, I’ve also composed two super awesome new-heights type of surf songs! Maybe when the band gets some good versions I’ll post em. Dan Izen
  7. Really fun thread Jim! It’s about time we discuss stuff that MAKES noise instead of cheap crap that only records it! I too am a tubes-til-the-end guy. But many surf purists sing the praises of the Quilter amps. If I were a touring artist I’d probably get into them; I can’t see dragging an ultra-rare 1962 Dual Showman (factory Triad 90w Tweed Twin OT!) around the country. But, I could easily see myself dragging that Carl’s Amps 6G14! Blood Reef only plays every six or eight weeks, so we can treat that as kind of a performance art thing. Part of the spectacle is the sight of those huge cabs and heads and to hear those cranked tubes y’know? This past Sat was the first band practice with that *monstrous* 460w all tube Mesa Strategy 88 AND the Carl’s Amps 6G14 - and the band never sounded so good. WOW. The greatest tone for both the guitar and bass. The organ goes through the 1974 Twin, which is a 120w version that cannot break up at all (with guitar), and is kinda bassy. It produces a perfect tone for the organ, with cool dark non-surf reverb. The line out from the organ is hotter than a guitar and that *can* get some pleasing dirt. I prefer a completely clean guitar tone, so Showmans and Twins are perfect. After hearing the two brownface circuits together I decided I just don’t need the blackface tone. Too shrill, too bassy, I guess just too scoopy. So I’m gonna dump the ‘64 Showmans eventually. I’m not familiar with this artist you guys are talking about, so I can’t comment on that tone. I’ve very recently had some huge revelations about guitar tone as it relates to music I like, but it’s a but much to go into! The tiny bit of research I did on attenuators was mostly forum reading, and nothing clearly rose to the top. It’s a cool idea though! I wish I understood speaker loads. It really does suck how the tone is very thin and sort of “blanket over it” until the gain is increased. The moment the amp opens up, I need earplugs haha! Thanks to this forum I’m very happy with the Etymotic earplugs. I ordered a few hundred bucks of different brands and those sounded the best. They also reduce the least, but if I keep them jammed in it’s fine for super loud crap.
  8. Jim - that Milkman 6G15 + harmonic vibrato box they sell is super, super tempting. I just read some great things about that on SG101! The Victoria box looks fun too but apparently it’s not a faithful 6G15. I’ve got a Mesa Strategy 88 and an Eden WT-300 for bass, but seven of the eight (gasp!) guitar amps are Fender... Just offered to trade one of the 1964 Showman for a blackface 2x15 JBL D130f cab haha! But I want to build and repair tube amps, as a hobby and a little minor income stream. These beautiful and heavy amps, they are almost 100% repairable and if maintained can work flawlessly for another fifty years! Dan Izen
  9. Yay there are other surf music fans here! I dunno, some of the best threads are others who share common interests on unrelated-to-the-board subjects. I am still hoping to hear from say, RVD or some other dinosaur here who may have stories about 1960 - 1963 and surf music. (Love you Rich!) Before I continue, if any of you want to join a forum of folks who love surf, join up here. (I’m DeathTide!) Actual surf legends have posted until they died on there. https://surfguitar101.com/ So, I’ve been pouring my energy into this 10-month per season, 24-hour-long-ep series these past few years, and I have no debt and no kids. A little over a year ago I realized I had the means to seriously upgrade the rigs! Enter: Reverb.com. Oh yeah... Oh heck yeah that 6G14-A 1962 Twin + the ‘63 tank is a great tone, but once I started playing Showmans through the 15” tone ring, the Twin kinda went to bed forever. Those low E string palm mutes feel like they’re coming from the deepest depths with the 15”. My current 3x15” Showman stack absolutely destroys, but I do wonder if adding a 12” or pair of 12” speakers would help somewhere. I used to play with 2x Showmans and 2x Twins haha! Now it’s just two Showmans. I also have a 1970 Twin that’s just got the beefiest tone, it’s like a gut punch. The other Twins sound completely different, but all are stock OTs. (Got a ‘72 and a 120w ‘74 that cannot break up at all - we put the organ through it!) The tone is solid throughout all four though, but I completely agree about the on-board reverb. I have a few Surfy Bears but the tube tank sounds way better, warmer and more full. Have you seen the trick where you reroute the Twin reverb output through the normal channel? (Just need a RCA F to 1/4” M adapter.) With this the “reverb” pot = dwell, the normal channel volume = mix, and the tone pots work instead of the single 6G15 tone knob. Haven’t tried it since I read about this after I already had the tanks. Hey have you tried the silverface mid 70s tanks? They have four tubes. I got a ‘76 tank truly in like new condition (in the box with the hang tag) and it’s a very different reverb. Super super dark and scary, but no drips! Just yesterday I removed the 1964 Showman from the stack - I prefer the brownface tone all around. Now the stack is the ‘62 Showman + a 6G14 clone made by Carl’s Amps (which sounds SO GOOD, no old caps n cracked solders!). The Showman is dry, no reverb (but what a tone!) and the 6G14 is wet. Soooooo wet; the drip is just massive. I have it at 10-10-10 (heh heh), because with the dry amp I can still hear every stroke. The sound recharges my soul. Oh dude, you really thumped my heart with a hammer. I want to learn how to build and service tube amps, so badly. I want to build a harmonic vibe / 6G15 box (six tubes?) eventually. You’re so right about kind folks helping with builds! I frequent OSG, TDPRI, and TalkBass and there are so many knowledgable folks there!! Even a fellow who is high up in Mesa, who is active and helps the littlest guys. I need to set up a permanent shop area. I was thinking a Champ or non-reverb Princeton would be a good first project. Best of luck on your journey!!! I was shocked to learn that in Tokyo, there is a guitar store that exclusively sells jazzmasters!? Yeah man Japan does love 60s guitar music! I mean, whattabout those amazing 90s garage bands?! Guitar Wolf, Teengenerate, 5, 6, 7, 8’s, Mad 3, etc. I agree that the sound on that Venture Live record is great! Three tracks TOTAL?!!! No way. It’s so weird that they constantly claimed to not be a surf band... I guess they wanted to avoid being caught up in “pop” music. But lots of their stuff feels very surfy. I want to try a 60s Mosrite but I feel confident that I will not like playing it. For two reasons, firstly because apparently they can barely handle 10s, and I currently play with 13s. Secondly because the strings are super close together. My finger tips are a little fat, but my knuckles are pretty bulbous. I’m sure the tone would be heavenly though... Dan Izen I forgot to add that Werner - that Spotniks song and video is really great!!! There’s a megathread on SG101 about gems from the dawn of surf with tons of super obscure songs like that. I just posted that on there, so thanks for that!
  10. I apologize, I was asking strictly about instrumental surf, no vocals. I really don’t care for much vocal music! I also will 100% disagree about the Princeton, but then again we’re talking about different styles. The kind of surf I like is CLEAN with zero “hair” or “dirt” or “breakup,” just the normal (awesome) tube harmonic distortion and all the noise that comes with a 6G15 reverb tank... That said, I am gassing pretty hard for a 5f2 Princeton for some reason... I’ll have to reach out to Wave Invasion! My outfit’s called Blood Reef. Dan Izen
  11. Oh yeah I know Hunter, he’s a True Fan Of Surf! (I’m totally not; there’s a ton of surf I find unbearably boring.) He was at that festival I mentioned above, which is why he couldn’t come to our show this past Sat. My last outfit played on his show in 2013 and we were so loud it maxed out the mics, and turned the songs into psychedelic fuzz! It sounded really awesome though... I’m *always* working on Mondays when his show airs, today was no exception.
  12. Just curious. I play an AV65 jazzmaster & a 2003 AVRI jaguar through both a ‘62 and a ‘64 Showman (with D130fs of course) and a ‘63 reverb tank. (I’ve also got a ‘62 Twin but no place to really use it at the moment haha!) I love spring reverb and surf. My mom grew up in the Bronx and was 19 in 1960 when surf started in Southern CA, and she never heard surf on the radio! So sad. I grew up in Hawaii (mid 70s - 80s) and also never heard surf on the radio. Lots of you are in Southern CA and I am super jealous! They just had a three day surf festival around LA this past weekend. I’d say surf is a style more than a genre, because let’s face it: Wipeout is a rock song, and so is Pipeline, Penetration, etc. Miserlou however, is a Russian folk song adapted to rock / surf! That’s my flavor, minor key and dramatic, not 1-4-5 blues jams. Dan Izen
  13. I have never felt bad about turning down 2-person jobs. If they are receptive I’ll explain, but most of the time it’s “bye.”
  14. I always imagine plants communicating in crazy low freqs like 10Hz / year or something...
  15. This is cool! I like the part where he decides to build his own drill from scrap. WHO DOES THAT!???
  16. Amazing show with amazing sound. Zero distortion heard by me, and I listen at a healthy level! Please update with more info! Dan Izen
  17. Love this thread!!! Great idea. Hey Jeff - #1 sticky this! It’s been so long since I’ve worked with that level of dumb I don’t remember any stories! If I do, I will be sure to post. Most of my staggeringly myopic quotes have come from actors lately. And they’re much sadder than funny...
  18. Good thoughts. I never used to “call out” anyone, never a single person. Now I must, per production. And yes Safe Harbor (or whatever it is!) that is exactly my platform: we have never once been responsible for a single L & D, it’s others.
  19. You know what David, that is a perfect capper to that thought. It was all working when the job started, and overwhelmingly these pieces of gear don’t stop working with normal wear and tear. (Yes it’s me!) Those Lectro tx jacks have that TA5 “tab hook” ledge that wears out with heavy use after about 4 or 5 years. That’s kind of what got me started, since those breaking means a costly trip home, and is 100% not the fault of whatever production it’s currently working on. Chris Medr also brings up a great point: the specific data I’m interested in doesn’t exist! If folks who have civilized jobs (indoors / idea conditions like a talk show) could share their experiences with how often their transmitters, slates, and Comtek receivers break “on their own.” In my life, few conditions are ideal. The humidity is so high I can barely take it, and the gear doesn’t really like it. Here are my best recollections: Devas- lots at first, like every few months. But that was years ago, and I think it’s been like 6 or 8 years and four are running flawlessly. (The fifth one I got used and it never worked well. After about four trips home, it seems to not be fixable.) Deneck TS3 Slates - these go back and forth all the time. Average would like one every 3 - 5 months. Water & hall sensor are usually the culprits. I do not think this is the slate’s fault at all, because I see how the ACs treat them. Denecke SB3 sync boxes - never once, and they ride on FS7 cameras for driving and action stuff. Comtek PR216 - About one every 5 - 7 months. Usually it’s a crackle at the jack, sometimes it stops seeing the tx but that’s pretty rare. Lectro tx - about one per 5 months Lectro 411 - about one every 2 - 3 years Solice - once a year for one, almost never for the other one.
  20. Hey thanks Mista David that is not something I’d considered. I suppose if insurance companies can declare an expensive item as valueless after seven years, that would make sense that normal wear and tear would not be expected before that time. Could that mean that since production companies are not insurance companies, say, a freshly repaired Lectro gets another seven years? I liked what you said first a lot more haha!
  21. Thanks for the perspective but I am not seeking that. We agree. I am trying to define “normal wear and tear.”
  22. Actually the PC told me they have gotten the camera house to pay for stuff! I was surprised to hear that. it’s season 5 of a 24-hour-long episode show, and lots of this gear has been used for the whole run. But I do have receipts to show how during the 10 week hiatus between seasons, I spend $ to maintain this gear. But my question is more arbitrary - how long until stuff “naturally” fails in ideal conditions.
  23. Well said, and quite similar to what I said to them. I did not think to add the part about “nothing is wear and tear, these are new and properly maintained gear” angle. I’m on season 5 of a 24 hour-long season shows and these items have felt that! But I agree it’s truly never normal wear and tear. I’m curious about that arbitrary 1000 hours number you guessed at. What are the real numbers? Lectros Devas Comteks Slates I do know that of the 7x UCR411s that have been in my run bag, only a couple have only ever needed a power switch fix, and I’ve had some of those for ten years.
  24. Let’s assume a brand new Lectro SMQV + COS11D start working in ideal conditions (indoors, temp / humidity humane levels, walking around rather than running and jumping) - what is the expected lifespan? When is a “reasonable” time before it should have to get serviced? I realize the warrantee is only what, a year? But to me that is not at all an indicator of how long these units should function in ideal conditions. So, what’s the average life of a transmitter, a COS11, or a Comtek PR216? Sound dept. L & Ds are pretty much *never* caused by sound dept.; it’s who actually uses the gear. Actors, village idiots, PAs, ACs, it’s everyone but us. So it really chafes when a production wants to deny an L&D on the basis of “normal wear and tear.” In my opinion, the moment these pieces are handed off, normal wear and tear goes out the window. The sound dept rarely drops things, and never yanks a mic cable. Sigh. You see the position I’m in.
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