Quiet 5e3 amp?

grritz

The guitar plays me
Silver Member
May 2, 2014
759
Rock Hill, SC
You go through amps like a spicy burrito goes through my innards:D

Never owned a 5e3 so I can't say for sure this is a accurate comparison but take a look at the Fender Pro Junior. Sounds killer, affordable and you don't have to kill your ear drums.

You're right...I've been on an amp "buying spree" recently. I came into a few $$$ a few weeks ago and my wife said "spend it!" I don't need to be told something like that twice, so I'm now enjoying the teen years I wasn't allowed to have. It's been a lot of fun.
I think with the attenuator, tho, I'll be at the end of my quest for amps I really, really, really like. Now, I just gotta sell the one that didn't make the cut: the EVH 5150 combo. If you know someone who's interested...
Thanks for the suggestion on the Pro Junior. You're one of my go-to guys here.
 

Arrested Dev

Strat-Talker
Jan 18, 2022
423
Austin, TX
You're right...I've been on an amp "buying spree" recently. I came into a few $$$ a few weeks ago and my wife said "spend it!" I don't need to be told something like that twice, so I'm now enjoying the teen years I wasn't allowed to have. It's been a lot of fun.
I think with the attenuator, tho, I'll be at the end of my quest for amps I really, really, really like. Now, I just gotta sell the one that didn't make the cut: the EVH 5150 combo. If you know someone who's interested...
Thanks for the suggestion on the Pro Junior. You're one of my go-to guys here.
Yeah, if I was willing to just spend some cash in the short term, I'd get the best attenuator to go along with great amps. This would be the key to versatility. Instead, personally, I'm still on a quest to find the right "balance"/compromise. Of course, this may all end up in the same spot - spend a bunch of money.
 

AntStrat

Dr. Stratster
May 6, 2019
12,918
US
You're right...I've been on an amp "buying spree" recently. I came into a few $$$ a few weeks ago and my wife said "spend it!" I don't need to be told something like that twice, so I'm now enjoying the teen years I wasn't allowed to have. It's been a lot of fun.
I think with the attenuator, tho, I'll be at the end of my quest for amps I really, really, really like. Now, I just gotta sell the one that didn't make the cut: the EVH 5150 combo. If you know someone who's interested...
Thanks for the suggestion on the Pro Junior. You're one of my go-to guys here.
It is a lot of fun!

And I get to live vicariously through you until my own gas attack hits :)
 

Cali Dude

Senior Stratmaster
Aug 9, 2020
1,346
California
The sound of a 5e3 amp is gorgeous. I have one now, but I can't keep it...it's just too loud in my 10'x16' space. If I turn either volume knob past 2-3, I'm getting into hurtin' territory.
There are many 5e3 clones out there, but they all seem to be in the 20-25 watt range.
I'm looking for something not so loud, but I'm not sure it's possible. Is a 5e3 amp loud just because it is a 5e3? Is it not possible for a 5e3 to be quiet? If so, I'll either have to abandon my quest...or start playing in the backyard.
Please share your thoughts on this...and point me toward a particular brand/model of 5e3 amp that might help.
Thanks.
The Tone King "Gremlin" would fit your needs perfectly. The tweed channel grinds out great rock tones, and the blackface channel is smooth. Plus, you get an attenuator to bring the sound down to any volume, without losing much magic.
 

grritz

The guitar plays me
Silver Member
May 2, 2014
759
Rock Hill, SC
The Tone King "Gremlin" would fit your needs perfectly. The tweed channel grinds out great rock tones, and the blackface channel is smooth. Plus, you get an attenuator to bring the sound down to any volume, without losing much magic.
Yeah, actually, do the Gremlin while you still have the free pass on amp buying. I want to know what you think.
The Gremlin is not actually a 5e3 circuit...and I'm focused in on that, thanks to the advice I've received here. I already have a great 5e3 amp (Louis Electric Buster)...it's just that today I'm learning how to make it playable with an attenuator.
 

grritz

The guitar plays me
Silver Member
May 2, 2014
759
Rock Hill, SC

Eric Dahlberg

Strat-Talk Member
Jan 8, 2020
52
California, USA
We make an amp that is a cross between a 5E2 and a 5E3. It sounds more like a louder 5E2, not a quieted down 5E3, i.e. great chime and edge-of-breakup tones but lacks the 5E3 swirl when the volume is maxed. IMO, the swirl won’t happen if any changes are made to the circuit, including putting an attenuator in front of the speaker because the sound of the driven speaker is a part of it.
 

grritz

The guitar plays me
Silver Member
May 2, 2014
759
Rock Hill, SC
We make an amp that is a cross between a 5E2 and a 5E3. It sounds more like a louder 5E2, not a quieted down 5E3, i.e. great chime and edge-of-breakup tones but lacks the 5E3 swirl when the volume is maxed. IMO, the swirl won’t happen if any changes are made to the circuit, including putting an attenuator in front of the speaker because the sound of the driven speaker is a part of it.
Noted.
 

Cerb

Anti conformist reformist
Jan 22, 2016
14,907
Sweden
Thanks. On advice of others, I did this:

We make an amp that is a cross between a 5E2 and a 5E3. It sounds more like a louder 5E2, not a quieted down 5E3, i.e. great chime and edge-of-breakup tones but lacks the 5E3 swirl when the volume is maxed. IMO, the swirl won’t happen if any changes are made to the circuit, including putting an attenuator in front of the speaker because the sound of the driven speaker is a part of it.
It will be interesting to see how it reacts with the Ironman. Being a reactive load it's a bit more than just a regular attenuator.
 

mark1406

Strat-Talker
Oct 20, 2009
100
Sydney
If the 5E3 were mine, I would consider using 6K6 valves instead of 6V6’s, though you will have to look into the compatibility further yourself.

The other option is to wire the 6V6’s as triodes, that changes tone but it does shed volume.

As there is no negative feedback using a LarMar master volume would work well.

I wouldn’t put a master volume on a vintage amp I would probably try a power soak or something. Though they are hit and miss.
 

RPKennedy

Senior Stratmaster
Platinum Supporting Member
Apr 27, 2013
2,162
Oconomowoc, WI
This isn’t cheap, but it did the trick for me:


This is more than just an attenuator, but worth it imo. FX Loop is a nice plus. There are other less expensive attenuators which might be an option for you too, you should check those out as well.
I sprang for a Power Station PS-2 in early 2021. After going through many attenuators that did not work for me, this did it for me as well.
 

RPKennedy

Senior Stratmaster
Platinum Supporting Member
Apr 27, 2013
2,162
Oconomowoc, WI
Looking at an Ironman II Mini.
Who votes yes? Why?
Who votes no? Why?
I vote no. Because I had one as a stand alone unit, and I had the one built into the Tone King Imperial II amp. It did not do it for me in either case.

I spent the money and got a Fryette Power Station PS-2. Could not be happier with that piece of gear.
 

fauxsuper

New Member!
Nov 17, 2018
1
Lebanon Oregon
The sound of a 5e3 amp is gorgeous. I have one now, but I can't keep it...it's just too loud in my 10'x16' space. If I turn either volume knob past 2-3, I'm getting into hurtin' territory.
There are many 5e3 clones out there, but they all seem to be in the 20-25 watt range.
I'm looking for something not so loud, but I'm not sure it's possible. Is a 5e3 amp loud just because it is a 5e3? Is it not possible for a 5e3 to be quiet? If so, I'll either have to abandon my quest...or start playing in the backyard.
Please share your thoughts on this...and point me toward a particular brand/model of 5e3 amp that might help.
Thanks.
Try an attenuator. When I had 5E3's I often used one at home.
 


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