Jamming With The New Orange Rockerverb MKII with TubeSync DIVO

March 12th, 2011

Mitch Laddie and Michael Blackwell checkout the new Orange Rockerverb 100 head with DIVO. The verdict was 10 out of 10!

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TubeSync At The UK Northern Newcastle Guitar Show

February 25th, 2011

Come and see TubeSync / DIVO in action at the Northern Newcastle Guitar Show:

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Northern Newcastle Guitar Show

The Lancastrian Suite, Federation Brewery, Lancaster Rd, Dunston, Gateshead, NE11 9JR

on Sunday 6th  March 2011

With Blues Guitarist : Mitch Laddie

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Tube Amp Testing For Professional Stage Performers – Engineering Tube Talk

February 22nd, 2011

A common requirement for tube amplifiers used for professional and stage purposes is that there should be a high percentage of confidence that one or more tubes will not fail during the performance. Tubes are often thought of in the same manner as light bulbs, in that they are most likely to fail catastrophically at switch on. This means that the moments just after the switch on point constitute the most stressful and potentially damaging periods in the life of the equipment.

In an attempt to guard against this possibility, it is common practice to do one of two things on a regular basis.

1/ regularly remove the tubes and have them commercially tested;

2/ replace the tubes with new stock on a regular basis.

These two methods may give the operator a degree of confidence but in fact, it can be shown that the faith placed in both methods is misplaced.

It is a known fact that removal of a tube from its socket results in a number of potentially damaging mechanical stresses on the metal to glass seals around the pins. Each insertion of an all glass tube will cause micro-cracking of the glass around the pin. This will invariably cause a small leakage of air into the valve, causing ‘gassing’ and eventually leading to its demise.

Removal for testing will also break the intimate contact between the holder and the tube contact pin, resulting in a poorer contact on re-insertion.

Many tube testers apply unreasonable electrical stresses to the tube internal electrodes and it is not uncommon for a known good valve to be damaged during the test. Tube testers can also give erroneous results depending on the way they perform the tests, possibly allowing faulty tubes to show ‘good’ and the good valves to be rejected as ‘bad’.

The second method of ‘blanket replacement’ with new stock on a regular basis can also lead to problems because if the failure distribution curve for tubes is analysed, it can be seen to follow the classic ‘bathtub’ failure curve. This inevitably means that an amplifier which is regularly ‘re-tubes’ will inevitably be considerably more likely to fail during the first hundred hours service than one which has been left untouched.

TubeSync overcomes these problems by performing an ‘in circuit’ test on the tubes every time the amplifier is powered up. The mutual conductance (gm) of the tube is measured by monitoring the cathode current of each valve whilst adjusting the grid bias in fixed steps. The results are tabulated and the new value is compared with previously stored values. A decision is then made on how far the tube has decayed in emission since the last test. Outputs from the device inform the user of the predicted remaining life of the tube.

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TubeSync Facebook Friends Are Now 2,000+

February 16th, 2011

Due to the growing demand TubeSync has now over 2,000 friends on Facebook!

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Click on the link above if you would like to join the TubeSync Revolution

Gary Moore is Gone. Gary Moore Guitarist and Gunslinger

February 7th, 2011

A musician as prolific as he was diverse, it’s no wonder Moore’s passing this weekend at the age of 58 has touched so many fans

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A modern bluesman’ … Gary Moore in 1979. Photograph: Richard Young/Rex Features

When the current lineup of legendary rock band Thin Lizzy toured last month, one of the highlights was an emotional performance of Still in Love With You, their mournful ballad from 1974. The song – with vocalist Ricky Warwick filling in for Phil Lynott who died in 1986 – was presented as a tribute to Lizzy’s famous fallen leader, with images of “Philo” in his 70s heyday resulting in barely a dry eye in the house. But no one could have possibly predicted that Gary Moore, the Belfast guitarist who contributed so much to the song, not least its extraordinary solo, would be dead within the month.

Moore’s sudden death this weekend at the age of 58 didn’t just rob music of one of Thin Lizzy’s best-known former members, but a giant of modern-day guitar playing whose work stretched far beyond rock and heavy metal to pop, jazz and even techno. Inspired to pick up a guitar by Fleetwood Mac’s Peter Green, Moore will be remembered as a true modern bluesmen whose ability to make a guitar seemingly cry in pain touched many. This morning, Bob Geldof positioned the guitarist/singer as part of a golden triangle of Irish blues including Van Morrison and Rory Gallagher. Moore’s former bandmates have paid tribute to a “great player and a great guy”. Most astonishing has been the outpouring of love and respect from ordinary people. On internet sites, Twitter and even football forums, fans have come together to honour an unpretentious, unassuming, prodigiously talented man whose soulful music one fan praised for “getting me through the bad times”.

Although Moore was at school with Lynott and drummer Brian Downey, Thin Lizzy had been going for five years before Lynott recruited Moore to replace Eric Bell in 1974. Moore’s first spell in the band lasted just three months, but his blistering playing on the single Little Darling took Lizzy towards the driven hard rock that made their name. Moore filled in for Robertson for a US tour in 1977, but his third spell in the group in 1979 inspired one of their greatest, most successful albums, Black Rose: A Rock Legend, featuring such classics as Waiting for An Alibi and Do Anything You Want To, before Moore quit again. His relationship with Lynott was famously fractious, but the pair united for Moore’s 1979 top 10 single Parisienne Walkways (another example of Moore’s melancholy blues) and 1985’s harder rocking Out in the Fields.

Perhaps Moore was too much his own man to be confined to a band. He recorded over 20 solo albums, including 1990’s Still Got the Blues, and worked with everyone from BB King to Bob Dylan. While recording a track called The Loner, Moore epitomised the idea of a guitar man as gunslinger, following whatever path his restless spirit demanded. A man who kept his emotions in check as much as he allowed them to pour out through his guitar, Moore once said he would like to be remembered as someone who “meant it, no bullshit”. Nobody who hears his remarkable playing would ever disagree.

Orange Amps Launch TubeSync DIVO at NAMM 2011

January 19th, 2011

Orange Amps Launch TubeSync DIVO at NAMM 2011

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Orange Amps Launch TubeSync DIVO at NAMM 2011

January 6th, 2011

For over forty years Orange amps has pushed back the boundaries of guitar amp technology and at NAMM 2011 the company is proud to announce a worldwide exclusive distribution agreement for DIVO TubeSync, a truly revolutionary new guitar amp technology. Here’s how Orange describes the technology:

TubeSync DIVO

The new DIVO technology automatically adjusts the bias of the output power tubes to ensure their full potential is realized. It monitors the amp’s performance and will isolate faulty tube failures, by running them at half power until the tubes can be changed. The DIVO system also increases the reliability of amplifiers by maintaining the optimum performance of the tubes by performing an ‘in circuit’ test every time the amplifier is powered up.

TubeSync-logo-500TubeSync DIVO technology opens up a whole new dimensions in tone options allowing for the first time ever the ability to mix and match tubes. You can experiment with an EL34, 6L6, 6550, KT77 or any other tube type all at the same time in the same amp. With DIVO the Tubes are automatically matched.

DIVO will extend the lifespan of your tubes and never again pay a tech to re-bias

Orange Logo Illustrator v9 BLKOrange amps will be offering this as option in their new Rockerverb 100 which will be “DIVO Ready.” For other Orange amps and most other brands Orange offer the DIVO Orange TubeSync OV4, a complete standalone unit.

Aston Electronics Becomes A TubeSync Service Point. Guitar Amplifier Repair and Mods and Custom Amplification Services

December 2nd, 2010

Volt Amps

For over 30 years, Geoff Pugh has been providing the musicians’ community with vital repair services. We repair, modify and produce high quality valve amplifiers. Our services extend beyond that of just valve amplifiers and therefore we are highly skilled in repairing and modifying other products such as effects pedals, solid state amplifiers, hi-fi amplifiers, etc.

Aston Electronics is the home of Volt Amplifiers. Volt Amplifiers are a range of high quality hand made amps built on demand. Specific features and requirements can be provide you with the ultimate amp of your choice.

Aston Electronics is also the home of the Darktone pedal series. These high quality hand made pedals provide you with a huge range in tone and depth which can be vital to a players live setup.

We are proud to annouce that Aston Electronis is now an approved installer of TubeSync.

To find out more visit : http://www.voltamps.co.uk

What People Say About TubeSync

October 15th, 2010

Guitarist Mitch Laddie has been out touring with the product fitted to his Mesa/Boogie F-50, which he said sounds “incredible”. “I had totally fallen out of love with this particular amp before Tubesync was fitted but the difference in sound is more than substantial. The response and tone have been improved ten-fold. Very tight, very fat and all round punchier, especially in the low to mid frequencies.”

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“I believe the product is very interesting and definitely nothing like anything I’ve seen or used before. The main advantages of the product are that not only does it give you a valve maintenance feature by displaying a light if a fault is found within a valve, but it manages your valves to run at an equal number of milliamps. This means that each valve is working at an equal rate which in theory gives you optimum amp performance.

“You can also connect the product to a computer and by using the TubeSync software you can dial in the parameters for each valve to your liking. This makes room for a lot of exciting experimentation,” he said.

“You can fit whichever valves you like, no matter which amp you are using with the product fitted and not only can you fit whatever valves you chose but you can mix valves and it will automatically bias them with no issues at all. This also gives room for a lot of exciting experimentation which we are going to get under way when I return from the current tour.”

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Technical director for Orange Amps, Adrian Emsley, plans to launch a new 100W model involving TubeSync at the upcoming Winter NAMM show next year, but didn’t disclose any further details. He did say that he thought the product was “extremely groundbreaking” with regards how it can be incorporated into high end tube guitar, bass and hi-fi amplifiers. “It can keep an amplifier perfectly set up and keep it always sounding great on the road!” he said.

Audio Kitchen Amps, an Acton-based guitar amp manufacturer, has incorporated TubeSync into its bass amps, one of which is currently being used by Kings of Leon. Audio Kitchen’s Steve Crow commented: “It’s pretty cool, that’s for sure. For me the most revolutionary aspect is the show-must-go-on factor; normally if an output valve goes bandy during a gig it’ll take out a fuse on the amp and the player is left playing air-guitar, but TubeSync will shut down the offending valve pairs and the show goes on. Genius.”?Tired Pony, the supergroup featuring Snow Patrol frontman Gary Lightbody and REM’s Peter Buck, have already played their first live gig with the help of an Audio Kitchen Base Chopper amp fitted with TubeSync, at London’s Forum venue in Kentish Town on July 14. According to Crow the band have been “loving it” so far and there are other bands lined up to try it out.

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Crow added: “People are scared of the word ‘Bias’, but TubeSync does lots of the thinking for you so it’s possibly a less daunting proposition for the average musician or tech. Also because the valves are individually biased, you don’t necessarily need matched pairs of output valves anymore.”

Hiwatt UK amplifiers, as used by the likes of Arctic Monkeys, Coldplay, Killers and The Enemy, is another adopter of the TubeSync. The company plans to install the product on its pro series of guitar amplifiers as standard. Hiwatt’s Mark Lodge said: “Pretty much all of the bands that we deal with will start to add TubeSync to their amplifiers over the next year. We are just actually putting together the wiring practices etc, for our builders to be able to incorporate TubeSync into our UK pro series custom shop amplifiers.” Lodge said the reason they have got behind the product from the start was because it is a “fantastic” piece of kit that solves many problems associated with valve amplifiers.

Hiwatt UK
He added: “We all know that valve amplifiers sound by FAR the best, the only issue is that 99.9% of the time, the valves let the amplifier down. The deteriation can be traced back to when the military ceased to use valves; since then, the quality has gone down and down. TubeSync negates this and actually once more gives builders and performers hope and peace of mind. I think it is a huge step forward for the valve amplifier.”

Wienbrock Amplifiers
Wienbrock Amplifiers owns two 45W production amps that currently use TubeSync, one with overdrive, one without. Rob Wienbrock said: “The TubeSync takes a completely new approach that has many hidden benefits. Its main advantages are significant reduction in power consumed, huge reduction in heat emissions, greatly extended valve and component life and great reduction in maintenance costs.
BREAKING THE BACKLINE MARKET

John Henry’s will be the first backline rental company to test out the TubeSync management system. Said Fallon: “We see the backline rental market as a market for us because they do have problems with amplifiers and they have to maintain the ones they’ve got when they rent them out.
“John Henry took us round his facilities and he has hundreds of amplifiers, one shelf had about 50 marshall amps on, so we realised we needed to give him something quick to install.”
John Henry commneted: “I haven’t managed to see one in action yet but from the brief overview it was a very interesting product, there’s nothing else like it, and if it works we would certainly be interested in having a look and trying it out. Anything that can tell you when a valve is about to pop is a good thing.
“I was a little bit concerned about how you actually fit it without drilling holes and damaging the authenticity of a vintage piece of kit because as it stands it’s based at the valve market. I think they need to make one which is an external fit. So it’s in the early stages and I’d need to get my engineers to test it out, but in theory it looks good.”

John Henrys
KBO Dynamics has been working on an external fit model specifically for the backline rental market. Said Fallon: “At the moment TubeSync is a circuit card that goes in the amp, but we’ve put it into a large circuit board self contained unit. It de-skills the fitting process so the user can easily retro-fit it into an existing guitar amp in around 5-10 minutes. John Henry will be the first one to test this out.”
Added Henry: “We go through thousands of valves a year so for us it would be a great asset as we might not need to replace a set of valves but maybe just one. It has a lot of potential.”

The Scissor Sisters Choose Hiwatt, Hiwatt Choose TubeSync

October 8th, 2010

The extravagant disco pop group The Scissor Sisters have purchased a Hiwatt amp for recording and live performances. They have just been announced as support to Lady Gaga for the North American leg of her Monsters Ball tour and have a new single “Any Which Way” out now.

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