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FDP Forum / Fender Amps: 1985 - Current / 65 PRRI vs 65 DRRI: Home Playing

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BluesDood

United States

Blues Dood
Apr 5th, 2017 01:18 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Hello, I'm currently in ownership of a 65 DRRI, and am considering exchanging it for a 65 PRRI. The drri is slightly too loud for me, although when I can turn it up past 4 I really enjoy that sound, otherwise I find it either slightly abrasive or slightly too bassy, kind of difficult to get the right middle ground at low volumes.

I have the chance to exchange it for a 65 PRRI, and my thoughts are leading me to believe the PRRI will be better suited for me volume wise, as well if memory serves me right the PRRI always seemed really easy on the ears. I cannot say the same about the 65 DRRI.

So, any consensus on these two amps? I honestly can say I love the 65 DRRI, and I'd be taking a gamble exchanging it for a 65 PRRI, but at the same time I can't help but feel the PRRI works better with strats and getting a sweeter tone at lower volume. Thoughts?

carsten

on the rhine

Apr 5th, 2017 02:47 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Hi BluesDood!

That´s a tough call...
I think the Deluxe is the "better" amp overall - but yeah, the Princeton sure sounds sweet at low volumes...
I´d have (oh, i DO have) both if I had the chance ;-)

Another thought - get a power-soak of some sort and get a whole new dimension of sound/s from your DR for a mere $100 or so!

That´s what I would do if I could´t have both and liked the DR as much as you do ;-)

cheers - C.


edit:

to be a bit more specific...
I own a ´66 Deluxe and ´79 PR, and both are very, very nice-sounding amps.
I use the Deluxe with the band all the time, and the Princeton stays home mostly. I used to use the PR for playing out for some time, but the Deluxe replaced it.
When I take the Deluxe home for maintenance etc., I occasionally use it cranked (like 8 and above) through my power-soak and it sounds awesome!
So yeah, just get a power-soak and hold on to your Deluxe!

(This message was last edited by carsten at 04:55 PM, Apr 5th, 2017)

BluesDood

United States

Blues Dood
Apr 5th, 2017 02:56 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Nooooo!!! Ugh...I was afraid to get that kind of response, and I wouldn't disagree, the DRRI sounds killer. Not a single guitar center in Houston has both a DRRI & PRRI otherwise I'd try them out myself...It's impossible to make a personal decision until tried & true in person, so I'm not sure what to do here...Fack.

All I have is what the facts are in my head, but that doesn't quite solidify the differences as playing in person does. Back to the drawing board? :/

Also, yeah I don't know about the power soak, I've tried a weber attenuator before and it sounded really bad, so I'm not sure if it would be any better >.< by bad I mean like, nails on chalkboard overdrive, super high end oriented, kind of pokey.

(This message was last edited by BluesDood at 04:58 PM, Apr 5th, 2017)

Viera
Contributing Member
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Santee CA

Poser extraordinaire
Apr 5th, 2017 02:59 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I've had both. For home playing the PRRI works better for me. I often play it through a 1x12 cab with a Celestion V30.

I sold the DRRI although I miss it sometimes. I really liked the normal channel.

BluesDood

United States

Blues Dood
Apr 5th, 2017 03:32 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Viera, I'd agree the normal channel is good, but I still feel the amp requires alot of volume to get where it needs to go.

I'm really in a pickle, I have no way to access both amps and compare. I may just return it and keep using my good ol' blues jr...since my options are so limited and I have no way to compare, the last thing I want is to get stuck with an amp that's too much for me...What a cluster man.

Doc Sarvis
Contributing Member
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USA/Salt Lake City

Tuned Strings and Tight Lines
Apr 5th, 2017 06:40 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Sweeter tone at lower volume = PRRI

littleuch
Contributing Member
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Florida

Apr 5th, 2017 06:47 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I used to have a DRRI and I loved the amp when I was gigging. The only thing I did was clip the bright cap. Loved the tone, loved the stock speaker, it just worked for me.

I've tried 2 different PRRI's at different times at the same music store. The first I found farty and a big disappointment. The second one sounded great and left me wanting ever since. I think you just gotta try it out. With the right (wrong) neighbors, I'm betting both amps can summon a call to the cops.

I see a Princeton Reverb something-or-other in my future. (PRRI, clone, silverface, etc.).

BluesDood

United States

Blues Dood
Apr 5th, 2017 07:40 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Doc Sarvis, you're right, but also I think the PRRI is generally sweeter, not just low volumes.

Okay, well even though I wasn't able to play the tolex PRRI, I was able to find and play a LTD wine red PRRI and here are my thoughts:

PRRI - softer sounding, brighter with more mids, less bass, and better reverb imo.

DRRI - very hard sounding, extremely dark, mid scooped, mushy reverb

The outstanding good characteristics of the DRRI is the mid-scoop and strong bass end attack. This gives a percussive feeling to the bass end, albeit somewhat harsh to my ears.

The outstanding good in the PRRI is the reverb, and sweet attack it has. There is nothing harsh about the amp.

The PRRI sings, and without much effort. The DRRI doesn't ever want to sing. At equal volumes, 5 on each, the PRRI has a very relaxed and easy tone when bending up high. The DRRI stays stubborn and hard sounding at the same volume, so it appears rather than compressing it just keeps dishing out this unforgiving-high-mid oriented attack.

So, I guess I don't have much to worry about. I think I'll end up returning the DRRI and exchanging it for the PRRI. If it works it works, if not oh well. I still have the good ol' faithful blues jr.

Thanks to those who commented, maybe I'll give an update when the dust settles :)

Deep

Kathmandu, Nepal.

Apr 6th, 2017 04:29 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

For lush and sweet as honey tones for home playing definitely get the Princeton Reverb. DR is a medium size club gigging amp and PR is a home noodling and smaller intimate coffee houses type gig amp. Princeton is just so sweet!

MLC

It's not just good..

...it's good enough.
Apr 6th, 2017 06:08 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I've got a '68DR and I absolutely love this amp.

Hard, dark, and mushy reverb?? - none of that with this amp....ever. Warm and smooth with sweet tone for days.

That said, if I didn't gig, I would definitely own a Princeton Reverb - a little gem of an amp.
One of the dumbest moves I've made, gear-wise, was selling the BFPR I had years ago. THAT'S one that I wish I had back.

For home playing, you're making the right choice, going with the PR.

rythmpyg
Contributing Member
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Wisconsin, USA

you'll thank me in the end
Apr 6th, 2017 08:42 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

In my opinion the guitar (pickups) you use have a huge impact too. A Gibson through a PRRI turns it into an instant fart-box, Fender much less so.

(This message was last edited by rythmpyg at 11:03 AM, Apr 6th, 2017)

carsten

on the rhine

Apr 6th, 2017 09:16 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Hi MLC!

"...Hard, dark, and mushy reverb??..."

I was thinking the same thing - perhaps there´s something wrong with BluesDoods DR...


Hey rythmpyg!

"A Gibson through a PRRI turns it into an instant fart-box..."

Mh, I think our mileages may vary on this one ;-)

In the link below you can hear my PR played LIVE with a Gibson-guitar.

cheers - C.

Gibson + Princeton Reverb

Viera
Contributing Member
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Santee CA

Poser extraordinaire
Apr 6th, 2017 09:47 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Nice tune carsten.

FWIW: My Epi LP Elite sounds very good through my PRRI.

rythmpyg
Contributing Member
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Wisconsin, USA

you'll thank me in the end
Apr 6th, 2017 10:08 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

"Mh, I think our mileages may vary on this one ;-)"

I admittedly only tried the one I bought, it wasn't usable with an es-335. I have read online that there were discrepancies from unit to unit. This was all when they first came out.

I've got another on the way, with an option to return, if it's like my previous unit.

I really, really want that amp to behave like so many have reported it can.

carsten

on the rhine

Apr 6th, 2017 10:21 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Hey rythmpyg!

"...it wasn't usable with an es-335..."

I´m sorry to hear that - hope you´ll find a nice PR that suits your needs soon!

I like mine very much!
I only retired it from frequent band-use because the Deluxe "cuts" it a hair better overall - just like Leo and his team had figured it out ;-)

cheers - C.

BluesDood

United States

Blues Dood
Apr 6th, 2017 12:13 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

To those saying they were surprised at my description of the DRRI, let me revise my statement.

I play in e flat with .11 gauge strings and my guitar is decked. I think this has a huge impact on how an amp reacts eq wise. That said, I was playing a guitar with .9 gauge strings and floating at GC into the princeton, versus my home rig which is as described above.

With that information, I think I jumped the gun and didn't tey to compensate with my home rig to get in a similar ball park as far as dialing in the amp right. I played my rig last night and what I found was that with my guitar, I have to really cut down on the bass with my DRRI to make it sound sweet, otherwise my description before was accurate.

What I found to work is cutting the bass to 1.5, and treble ranging from 7.5 to 8.5 depending on what sound I want. I find with this setup I don't have the unpleasant harshness as I previously mentioned, and the amp seems to be able to breathe much easier.

So the final result is, I'm going to keep the DRRI. I don't find it as sweet, but I find the DRRI had more grunt, and as others mentioned is slightly more flexible. I'd love to own both, but since I'm only going to keep one I'm pleased with what I have. My apologies for jumping the gun on judgement, they're both amazing amplifiers.

carsten

on the rhine

Apr 7th, 2017 06:24 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Hi BluesDood!

Great to hear that you found some settings that made your DR more suitable for you - hope you´ll enjoy it even more now!

And keep your eyes peeled for that sweet Princeton in your future ;-)

cheers - C.

BluesDood

United States

Blues Dood
Apr 8th, 2017 03:09 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Thanks Carsten, the princeton is where it's at for low volume. I think the DRRI has issues with volume, and overall frequency response so it may not be a keeper after-all, but it'll work out either way. I have a tweed and tolex blues jr, and honestly they fulfill my needs, the DRRI just has a slightly beefier, and pretty tone. That's nice and all, but I feel like I can't use it because at low volumes it sounds like rubbish, and at the volumes it comes alive it's too loud.

(This message was last edited by BluesDood at 05:11 AM, Apr 8th, 2017)

Big Joe

USA

Apr 8th, 2017 04:47 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

All my guitars sound good through my PRRI ( Les Paul, 335, Strat, Gretsch , Tele). I did change the speaker to a Celestion Gold and the O/T to a T020. I do have different EQs for each guitar. While I really ike my PRRI, I'm considering buying a Vintage Sound 20 which is a point to point Princeton circuit with a 12 " speaker. Raul Malo of the Mavericks plays one and it sounds soooo good.

(This message was last edited by Big Joe at 06:48 PM, Apr 8th, 2017)

pombrio
Contributing Member
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USA

Apr 8th, 2017 09:18 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Big Joe, I have a Vintage Sound 20 and have nothing but high praise for it. Beautiful build quality and it sounds wonderful.

Back to the thread, a PRRI or clone can still be stupid loud at home volumes (depending on your situation) in order to hit that sweet zone if you're looking for tube amp grind. I barely have mine above 3 because of the family so pedals are used for dirt.

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FDP Forum / Fender Amps: 1985 - Current / 65 PRRI vs 65 DRRI: Home Playing




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