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Fractal Audio AMP models: Prince Tone (Fender Princeton)

Discussion in 'Axe-Fx II Discussion' started by yek, May 8, 2016.

  1. #1 yek, May 8, 2016
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2016
    yek

    yek
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    * EDIT: Up-to-date information is available in Yek's Guide to the Fractal Audio Amplifier Models *

    [​IMG]

    Prince Tone: based on Fender Princeton

    This article covers the three models based on the following Fender Princeton amps:

    - Prince Tone: Tweed Princeton with 5F2 circuit.
    - Prince Tone Reverb: '66 Blackface Reverb, AA964 circuit.
    - Prince Tone NR: Silverface without reverb, AA964 circuit (modeled after early CBS “Silverface” model, pre-CBS design and components).

    The "Reverb" model is my favorite.

    Cliff:
    "A Princeton Reverb has an extra gain stage due to the reverb recovery. Hence it has more gain."​

    The small Princeton amps run on two 6V6 power tubes and are low wattage. They were intended as practice amps for students, but they are also great recording amps. Ryan Adams uses Princeton amps only. Many people play them on the verge on breakup. Interesting fact: the Princeton was the basis for Mesa’s Mark I amp.

    The Princeton has Volume, Bass and Treble controls, Reverb (on models with reverb), Tremolo controls and two inputs. The Tweed Princeton possibly just has Volume and Tone (mapped to Treble) controls.

    Note that the range of most Fender models is 1 to 10, while the model controls range from 0 to 10. For the OCD-crowd, here's a translation table, created by forum member Barhrecords.​

    There’s a High and a Low input to plug the guitar into. Axe-Fx II models of Fender amps are always based on the High input. To get the equivalent of using the Low input, set Input Trim to 0.500.

    Wikipedia:
    “The Fender Princeton was a guitar amplifier made by Fender. It was introduced in 1947 and discontinued in 1979. After Fender introduced the Champ Amp in 1948, the Princeton occupied the next to the bottom spot in the Fender line. Fender Princetons (as well as their sister amp the Princeton Reverb) from the early models into the 1970s models are highly valued particularly as recording amplifiers.​

    The first Princeton, the "Woody" (so called for its uncovered wooden cabinet), was the smallest of the original Fender line of three amplifiers, an incredibly basic 3-watt practice amp with no controls at all, not even a power switch. The first widely-produced Princeton, the 1948 tweed-covered "TV front," used one 6SL7 or 6SC7 dual-triode tube to provide two stages of RC-coupled voltage amplification in the preamplifier section; the power amplifier section used a single cathode-biased 6V6 beam power tetrode configured for Class A operation. The amplifier had a single volume control and a simple low-pass tone control to control treble response. The Princeton circuits up through 5C2 differed from the Fender Champ in having two vice one preamp stage (6SC7 dual-triode vs 6SJ7 pentode) and added the tone control that was absent in the Champs; the 12AX7-based Princeton models 5D2 through 5F2-A were essentially the Champ circuits 5D1 through 5F1 with a tone control and a somewhat larger output transformer. In 1956 the Princeton received a new cabinet roughly half again as tall and wide as the previous Champ-sized "small box."​

    In 1961, a new Princeton of fundamentally different design was introduced, which instead of being essentially an upgraded Champ was more like a junior Deluxe. This "brownface" version used a single 7025 dual triode in the preamplifier; a 12AX7 dual triode, one half of which operated a tremolo oscillator and the other half of which served as a split-load phase inverter; and two 6V6GT tubes, which were fixed-biased in Class AB push-pull configuration in the power section. In 1963, the single tone control was replaced with individual bass and treble control knobs, and the base Princeton was joined by the Princeton Reverb. A pull-out "boost" switch was added to the volume pot in 1978.​

    The Princeton is particularly famous as the basis for Mesa Boogie's Mark I, which is a heavily hotrodded Princeton equipped with modified preamp and a Bassman transformer, allowing it a higher gain output of 60 watts.​

    In 2006, Fender revived the Princeton name, under "Princeton Recording-Amp" (Pro-tube series) and "Princeton 650" (under Dyna-touch III series). The Princeton recording amplifier is basically a blackface Princeton with built-in overdrive, compressor and power attenuator. Fender also reissued the Princeton Reverb."​

    Fenderguru.com:
    “The Princeton Amp is often misinterpreted as a Princeton Reverb without reverb. Just by looking at the front panel and the knob functions it might seem so. A closer study of the circuit design will reveal that the Princeton Reverb has an extra gain stage (one half of the 12AX7 V3 tube) just after the dry and the wet reverb signals are mixed. This means that there is one extra tube stage that can cause preamp gain and contribute to the tone with sustaining harmonics, compression and sag. Hence, the Princeton-Amp is cleaner than the Princeton-Reverb when the volume is pushed beyond 3-4. The volume knob is less sensitive on the Princeton Amp, and you can play them on volume 7-8 still sounding clean.​

    “The Princeton Reverb is the smallest blackface/silverface Fender amp with both tremolo and reverb. With a 10 inch speaker run by a 12-15W dual 6V6 amp, it delivers a true “American” Fender tone with punchy, responsive lows together with chimey highs. When it is cranked it tends to sound a bit “browner” than the bigger two-channel amps, meaning more breakup in the lower frequencies and mid-focused tone. Much of this is due to an unefficient phase inverter circuit design.​

    Compared to many bigger Fender amps the Princeton Reverb (PR) wenr through the CBS/silverface periods with very little changes. The rectifier tube was one of the tube and circuit changes where the 5U4GB was replaced by a GZ34. In build quality and component selection (brands of caps, resistors, pots) the silverfaces are not as robust as the blackface models. The glued and stapled baffles on the silverface amps is to us one of the bigger differences between the blackface and silverface amps, or should we say, the cabinets. Still, many people consider the tone of the silverface Princeton Reverb just as good as the blackface. Being almost a blackface amp with a “wrong” faceplate, the large number of silverface models became popular player’s amps. Lot of value-for-the-money."​

    We’ve got several IRs of 10” Princeton speakers as stock cabs.









     
    austinbuddy, rm60, rushfan and 5 others like this.
  2. yek

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    pima1234, dr bonkers and spx90 like this.
  3. VeryBadMan

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    Super write up as usual Yek ! I suggest try the stock preset as is. Just wow is all I can say. Interesting that the Princeton was the basis for what mutated into the early Mesas. The stock Prince Tone preset sounds and behaves a lot like my Mini Rectifiers Pushed channel
     
  4. Smeier_ch

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    One of my AxeFx favourites, since the beginning....
     
  5. ∞Fractals

    ∞Fractals
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    I've recently played the new ones from Fender ... retail is $1600! Will have to fire this up today when I play.

    Thanks again yek! Love these threads ...
     
  6. #6 yek, Aug 2, 2016
    Last edited: Aug 2, 2016
    yek

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    While updating the Amp Models Guide, I stumbled on the PRINCE TONE REV model again.
    It's one of the Fender models I like best.

    I recommend it to anyone looking for a simple "into your face" Fender tone, not too harsh, and a little grit.

    With a Strat you only need to dial back Bass and adjust Input Drive to your liking, between 3 and 4 for a fairly clean tone, around 5 for a clean tone with balls and up to 7 - 8 for trademark Fender overdrive.

    With humbuckers, just change Input Trim to 0.500.
     
  7. tweedster

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    The Brown face Princeton has a tremolo that is fantastic and not well reproduced in the axe fx. It goes from deep throb to "Crimson and Clover".
     
  8. mr_fender

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    Brownface Princetons had bias tremolo. Use the tremolo settings in the Amp block for that sound. Later blackface models had optical tremolo that had a different response.
     
  9. Jan Geerts

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    I discovered this one this week. I use it on most of my patches now. It's got excellent clean, breakup and that snarly loose overdriven tone I so like. Push it with an RC boost and Fuzzface, add delay, and it's space rock heaven.
    My cab is a Freeqi 212 with a Jensen Blackbird and Tornado, so practically opposite to the speaker the Princeton uses, but it works perfectly. Huge, clear and warm.
    Ah, what a treat to have dozens of vintage amps in a box. The discovery is never over.
     
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  10. yek

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    Yup, did the same. Changed my clean tones from Shiver Clean to Prince Tone Rev.

    I love it when I stumble upon a amp model that's so simple, doesn't need a lot of tweaking (I only dial down Bass) and has a vibe of its own.
     
    bradlake likes this.

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