I am a proud new owner of a Dr Z Maz 18 no rvb (head) and I am lucky enough (this week) to be recording in the studio with a local artist. The artist in question was kind enough to also bring me an original 1965 Blackface Fender Deluxe. Evidently my first feeling was fear, as I thought I would hear something better, something more vintage than the Dr. Z amp that I just had bought. After comparing them both, there was nothing, absolutely nothing that the Fender was better at than the Dr. Z. Actually, I tried forcing it to the recording, and every time I used the Fender, bad result (sonically speaking) were happening. The clarity of the sound, my pedals affecting the Fender way more than the Z, my guitar sound cutting through the mix... Even the three sound engineers, while I was sound checking both amps, pointed towards the Z giving me the thumbs up.
All this to say that I am 100% fully convinced that those Fender vintage aren't that great. I now wonder what is all the fuss about those amps
Im a believer...The gig I had the other day used an old standby(bluesjr).It was rainy,didnt know how far I was going to haul and setup...I don't like that.Man it was disappointing.Wasnt bad... but weres the snap on top,the nice milky breakup.
The gig the other night with ghia and ep boost was magic,the goodies just poured out that little fella.
I know they are very different,.....nmz we are spoiled by the Z's brudda.I can live with that after playing other amps for so long.Wish I would have taken my head out of my (*#%) a long time ago.
Prior to owning my Maz Jr, I had a reissue Deluxe Reverb then a Twin Reverb RI...I know, not originals, but still, at one time, I thought they were the cat's meow...the Maz Jr, to my ears, smokes em both. The Fenders are classics no question...the Maz, well, it's a modern classic in a class of its own.
Tone Quest Report recently reviewed the current Fender Super Sonic 22 quite favorably. The reviewer said its vintage channel sounded better than his original 65 Deluxe, which was, no doubt, very well maintained. Got me thinking maybe I ought to get one. You know how GAS is. Then I mentally kicked myself and said "The MAZ and the JAZ will get you there. What are you thinking?"
Last Edit: Jun 13, 2013 6:53:16 GMT -7 by doctorice
Black Zs, blonde Zs, red Zs too; one in silver and another in blue.
Larchmont, NY, USA
Old Saybrook, CT, USA
Tone Quest Report recently reviewed the current Fender Super Sonic 22 quite favorably. The reviewer said its vintage channel sounded better than his original 65 Deluxe, which was, no doubt, very well maintainded. Got me thinking maybe I ought to get one. You know how GAS is. Then I mentally kicked myself and said "The MAZ and the JAZ will get you there. What are you thinking?"
I totally agree, I believe that I will never search again. I will probably try different tubes, perhaps change the speaker in the cabinet, but I will never try to change amp.
I've owned a few vintage BFDR's. And tho they're very cool amps, I don't think they were Fender's best stab at gigging or recording amps. The Maz amps seem to excel at both levels. I agree 100% with the OP as long as we're talking DR's... now Bassman Amps, different story, but Z has that covered too with a much more reliable line....
1) In my pocket I possess a device capable of accessing the entirety of information known to man.
I use it to access funny pictures of cats, and to get into arguments with total strangers.
Location: "Deep in the Heart of Texas" (Near the Alamo)
I haven't ab'd the fender supersonic 22 with my maz.... but I took the supersonic for a spin at my local mom and pop guitar shop for about 30 minutes. It went from clean to modern mean pretty easily. Cleaned up well with guitar volume knob. Sounded a little sterile...probably needed speaker broken in... but if I couldn't have a Z, I would own one of these.
Guitars: Fenders and Takamines
Amps: Maz 18 Studio combo, RxJr Studio combo
Pedals: various Wamplers, Boss, and Mxr.
I've owned an original 65 deluxe and it was a marvelous Lil amp but after it went down on me at a gig I got nervous and traded for another Z. My maz will do what my old fenders did just fine and at the last gig the sound tech (whom I've played music with for years and knows my tone well) says I've got the best tone I've ever had. My tone is a Pete Anderson twang style and my maz and rx jr cover that in spades
Sure no problem. Treble 11 o'clock Mid varies by room but usually around 9 o'clock Bass 1:30 - 2 o'clock Master volume around 2 o'clock Cut between 9 & 11
I've been using a boss dm2 for a little slap back and a full tone fat boost for just a touch of hair. I also add a dynacomp set really low ( don't like my tone too squashed) The main tool is my 69 tele. Its got a nice bite that fits that style. Its not "exact" Anderson tone but gets me close enough for me.
The Blackface amps and a MAZ 18 are totally different animals. Also, the components in most of the original vintage amps have drifted over the years and don't sound like they did when new. If you were to hear one that has been totally restored and blueprinted (not just new filter caps and Russian tubes) you would understand what I mean.
Back when modding amps became popular people would bring in tired BF amps and want me to add a gain stage or something similar. I convinced them that we needed to blueprint the amp first to make the mod worthwhile. Usually after doing that and changing the speaker to a Vintage 30 (not my favorite) they were happy with the stock amp.
Blackface amps do have their limitations and you have to live within that. For instance, the sweet spot for the volume control is usually somewhere between 4 and 7. Also, they like to be played relatively clean. Blackface Bassman amps are different circuits than the rest of the Fender lineup. I have both vintage Fenders and a couple of Dr Z amps and I like them all.
CS Relic Nocaster w/Warmoth neck, Self-built Strat,
Self-built Tele/2 Humbuckers,
Jazzmaster w/Lollars, Gibson Johnny A Std.
'64 Silvertone Dano, Martin D-42 Koa,
'70's Guild D-35
JAZ Head/pair of 2x10 cabs, MAZ Jr 1x12 combo w/ C-Gold
1979 Orange Hustler w/WGS Blackhawk, 1964 Ampeg Gemini 1
1968 Vibrolux Reverb, 5E3 clone w/Tone Tubby w/ Alnico
Martin Buff Deluxe, Paisley Drive, Animal, Ego Comp,
Flint, EB vol ped, AnalogMan ADRX20, EP Boost.