Studiomaster Combo Amp

Discussion in 'The Squawk Box' started by flameburst, Nov 7, 2007.

  1. flameburst

    flameburst Senior Member

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    Has anyone else heard of these, or had experience of these...

    Studiomaster (RSD) Valve Leadmaster (VLM) combo amps?

    I've had one of these fabulous amps since new. They're great in every way.

    Apparently not many were made, and those that were made, were between 1980-1982. If anyone knows more about these amps, please add your info to this thread.
     

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  2. lp59aholicDon

    lp59aholicDon V.I.P. Member V.I.P. Member

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    Wow Flameburst, never seen or heard of that one, Looks like a Mesa Knock off, sounds like it belongs in the unknown or under rated amps , What are the tones like? How soon does it break up? Tubes , Power levels?
     
  3. flameburst

    flameburst Senior Member

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    The tones are amazing, two channels (clean/gain), has a 200 watt Fane speaker, 60 watt output. It is almost like a British equivalent of a Boogie. The graphic EQ is great for different distortion settings... and of course it's LOUD when it's wrapped around a bit. The break up doesn't really happen (two channels) as it was built for studio use mainly, but it is a great live rig (apart from it weighing an absolute ton). The amp runs super quietly too, and even has a fan to keep things cool.

    As I said the production was low, but there are some favourable reviews on Harmony central, and a couple of other places.

    The power levels and tube specs can be found here:
    http://www.studiomaster.com/hp3.html

    A couple of reviews can be found here:
    http://www.harmony-central.com/Guitar/Data/StudioMaster/Valve_Leadmaster_112_Combo-1.html

    I'm surprised there weren't more built. Definitely in the 'Under-rated' category for sure! I'd love to know if anyone on here has one too.
     
  4. fourmations

    fourmations Junior Member

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    hey flameburst

    i have one!

    [​IMG][/IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]

    i got it for 270 euros!

    its sounds fantastic and has great tonal variety
    but when i crank the gains on mine it gets quite muddy

    is yours like that, I am going to send it for a service
    when i get some funds together

    I made the channel switcher footswitch off it
    but is not really possible to get a good clean A / dirty B going on mine,
    as the gain drives the clean channel too

    i am always on the lookout for info on it
    I have a schematic and the manual if you want them

    have you ever retubed yours, what ones did you use?
    mine has really old tubes (they are not mullards or any of
    the expensive ones AFAIK)


    any good info or tips or things you have learned on it?

    regards

    4
     
  5. coldsteal2

    coldsteal2 V.I.P. Member

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    Reminds me of some of the Custom built amps i have
    seen Studio Musicians use,
     
  6. lp59aholicDon

    lp59aholicDon V.I.P. Member V.I.P. Member

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    The cabinet looks like my Seymour Duncan with tolex and grill cloth removed Controls are different but the back of the chassis looks like a Convertible 100 too , Seymours are notoriously heavy as well
     
  7. flameburst

    flameburst Senior Member

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    Fourmations... thanks for your message. Sorry I haven't replied sooner, I've been a bit busy lately with not much time for MLP surfing.

    I have never re-tubed mine, I have a feeling it has Sylvania tubes in it, but I've not looked inside for years. You got yours for a bargain price - well done. It looks like you lost a few of the knob pointers - shame.

    I rarely play at loud volume - the last time I did though it was great (2500 seater gig). However, The master volume never went more than half way even then!

    On mine, I tend to go for a slightly dirty sound as my base setting, and if I need to stomp on a box for more distortion then I'll do that. I'm currently thinking of getting a Klon Centaur... they seem to be the 'Nazz' according to many folk on here, and I've heard this elsewhere.

    I've no idea where my foot switch went... I would like to find that again someday. Thanks for your offer of a copy of the manual - but I do have one myself - it's just a photocopied effort, but I know I have it lying around somewhere.

    If yours is sounding muddy, it does sound like it would benefit from a basic service. Although these things are built like a tank, journeying on many an un-made bumpy road between gigs can shake things loose a bit inside. Let me know how you get on.

    All the best Fourmations - it's really cool to find another Studiomaster owner!
     
  8. karlthebassman

    karlthebassman Junior Member

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    Hi all, new joiner here. ....sorry, I'm a bassplayer and occasional tele player :shock:.....but I saw this thread about the StudioMaster VLM. A friend of mine has just dropped off his VLM with me to troubleshoot. Fourmations, are you still here? Would you mind sending me a copy of the schematic if you still have it?

    If you get down to southern Spain, we'll have a cold one!

    thanks,
    Karl
    Nerja, Spain
     
  9. Jimmy Mac

    Jimmy Mac Junior Member

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    Hi - I have a Studiomaster Valve Leadmaster 1 x 12 60 watt hardwood combo for sale if you are interested send me your email and will get some pics to you
    Thanks, Jimmy Mac
     
  10. kennyp54

    kennyp54 Junior Member

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    I bought the first Valve LeadMaster sold in the USA and still have it. I'm also one of the Harmony Central reviewers. I saw this amp featured in Guitar Player and immediately tracked down how to find & purchase one. I paid $750 for it and had to buy it through a Studiomaster dealer, but it was dropped shipped to me and the dealer never even saw it. I think that was 1982 but don't hold me to that. I've owned dozens of many coveted amps that have come and gone over the years. I won't bore anybody with a full list but I've had blackface Fenders (and still do), Marshalls, numerous Mesa Boogies, Duncan Convertible, Dr. Z Maz 38 Sr., Carr (still have a Rambler), Laney, Rivera, Kendrick, and many others. While many of them are gone I still own and still love the Valve Leadmaster. I've never found an amp that sounds better and have never even considered trying to sell it. It does not do channel switching well but the range of tones makes the amp such a chameleon that you can get a good sound with ANY guitar. It's 60 English tubes watts I believe and has plenty of power. There are some things I'd like to see by today's amp standards that this amp does not have like pentode/triode, damping, 1/2 power etc., but it is built like a tank, sounds great, and is still one excellent tube guitar amplifier.
     
  11. sll

    sll Junior Member

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  12. sll

    sll Junior Member

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    Hello, I just ran across this 10 year old posting and wondered if you still have the schematic for this amp? If so, would it be possible to get a copy?
    Thanks,
    s
     
  13. bblooz

    bblooz Senior Member

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    Welcome to the forum! It looks like fourmations had schematics at one time. once you get enough forum messages, you should be able to PM him to ask for the docs on the amp. Be sure to post a brief bio in the Introductions forum, and respond to some of the other threads. That should get you going.
     
  14. Funkerator

    Funkerator Junior Member

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    Hello,

    I have 3 of these amps, they are great. I've been reconditioning them over the years.

    Here is the Schematic:
    http://www.champagne.productions/Documents/vlm.png

    Here's one with resistor colors and signal flow, etc...
    http://www.champagne.productions/Documents/vlmr.png

    I had a graphic EQ band go out and had to replace a choke... advice: if your eq circuit works, don't mess with it. The circuit board soldered to the faders is a real bitch! As for tubes, I've tried the new tung-sol and the JJ's, I prefer the JJ's in these amps.

    Good luck!

    Jay C.
     

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