Hello all. Belonging to my dear friend Steve Russell of the Vintage Hofner and Selmer web-sites, this Selmer TV12/T combo (known as the "Professional in 1962) was given to me by Steve with a request to sort out the non-working tremolo.
Apparently, a few years ago this amp was handed over to a guy who had offered to fix it for Steve in exchange for a few previous favours. It turned out that the amp was in the possession of this so called technician for about two months. When Steve made enquiries as to how work on the amp was progressing, he was told that the parts were no longer available and that the amp could not be repaired! What a load of poppycock! The guy just didn’t know what to do with it in reality! After Steve had given it me to sort out, and on first removal from the cabinet, I could see that previous work carried out in it was disgusting. In-fact, the word “abortion” springs to mind. Just check the photos!!
I then proceeded to spend much time in putting this baby back to rights. It took a fair bit of time but in the photos you can see the difference! The ironic thing about the tremolo not working on this baby when Steve bought it a few years back is that there was a break in the foot-switch lead. The tremolo would have never worked like this anyway, and there is a strong possibility that this was the initial fault. Surely the previous "technician" should have spotted that!
The tube compliment in the TV12 is an EZ80 for the rectifier, 2 x ECC83's (half of the second ECC83 is for the tremolo), and a pair of 6AQ5's for the output. As I have said before, I prefer a pair of output tubes in an amp, in push-pull class A, rather than a single ended output class A. In my opinion this always sounds a bit sweeter, yet can still be nicely overdriven. These little amps are usually good for about the 8 watts RMS clean, which in fact was what was originally claimed by Selmer in the 1962 catalogue, but they can make 12 watts and beyond with some nice distortion.
I gave it a mega, thorough service, and at last she is great now. What more can one say?
Many thanks for your continued interest, John.
By the way, I did one, very small mod to the amp whilst it was on the bench. I added a bypass capacitor to the 6AQ5's' cathodes (the output tubes). This isn't in the original design and I can't see why because it makes so much difference to the performance of these TV12's.
You can do this mod quite easily yourselves, Just use a 50 - 100uf cap @ 25 - 50 volts, and just listen to the difference! In-fact I didn't tell Steve, the amps owner, just to see if he really would spot the difference, and........here is a copy of his e-mail that he sent me shortly after picking-up his repaired amp:
I had a good session with the Selmer Professional TV12 last night. As usual, I am very pleased with it. Many thanks! Quite apart from the tremolo now working perfectly, I do think that the amp itself sounds better - more oomph and very Shads/ Vox AC** sounding with the echo turned up. Maybe it's my imagination, particularly that you have now told me that it is push-pull Class A? Did you do anything to it that would have had that effect?
Cheers for now, Steve.
I then had to confess............!!
.................and after. The blue capacitor on the left of the picture is the modification that pleased Steve so much.