Fender PRRI

From 2009 until mid 2018, my amp of choice was my Egnater Tweaker 15 head through either the matching Tweaker 112 cab or through a handmade cab I bought off of The Gear Page many years ago that housed a broken in Eminence Cannabis Rex 12″. 

While the Tweaker covers a lot of ground a Fender amp covers, it still misses some of the Fender clean sounds. There’s something about the reverb, the tremolo, and the clean sounds of a Fender amp. 

Years ago, I bought and made plenty of use of a ’65 Deluxe Reverb Reissue, commonly referred to as a DRRI. It was, and still is, a wonderful amp. The decision to buy that amp was spurred by briefly owning a silverface Fender Champ, which is a 5w tiny little amp with an 8″ speaker.

That Champ really set my heart’s desire on a Fender, but I wanted more amp out of it and had heard about the Princeton Reverb. At 15w, it was louder than the Champ and had both reverb and tremolo, but none came across locally. 

Eventually, I was able to obtain the DRRI through trades and it quenched my Fender thirst. After all, it was the Princeton Reverb’s bigger brother at 22w through a 12″ speaker. 

The Tweaker eventually unseated the DRRI and mostly fulfilled my Fender needs…until it didn’t.

Getting a Sweetwater card is bad news for a musician with a curiosity for and love of trying new gear. I checked on things from time to time and eventually found my way to the Princeton Reverb Reissues. My undoing draw near as I saw that they offered one in lacquered tweed AND with a 12″ speaker. I pulled the trigger. 

When the amp arrived, I hungrily plugged it in and began playing. There was a weird buzzing sound and I thought it was defective. I turned to Google and learned that new speakers can have that issue until they get a little broken in. 

This was the first time since in 20 years that I’d owned a new tube combo. The other new tube amp I bought had been my Egnater Tweaker and I’d bought the cab used. I hadn’t realized that I get to break the amp in!

After working with JD and Matt on Lo-Fi Nice Try’s Waiting Drove Us Mad, I ended up rerecording every one of my parts and used this amp. It’s been used on every guitar track on Skylines and the Horizon

In the future, I’ll blend the two mics on the Princeton Reverb Reissue and the SM57 I intend to use on the Tweaker to get a variety of tones. 

Although I’d absolutely love to have a vintage Princeton Reverb, and one might be in my future, I finally have the amp that I’ve wanted for a number of years and I can’t be happier. It plays well with every pedal I’ve thrown at it and, although it doesn’t have an effects loop, the delays and modulations I’ve used through it still sound good.