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Super Deluxe Reverb 550C

 

Model No. SDR-550C

Series: Retro Cage Guitar Amp

 Guitarist Description :

 Classic "Shine On You Crazy Diamond" tones...

 

MSRP: $1330.00

Sale Price:  $997.50

Overview:

 

The FRENZEL FM - 5E3 SDR "Super Deluxe Reverb" is the reverb version of our classic 50 watt FRENZEL FM - 5E3SDX "Super Deluxe Plexi" which has rave reviews from all over the world. It has all the features of our Super Deluxe including the Type F Deluxe voice and the  Type M  Plexi voice preamps...plus vintage pure tube driven long tank reverb for those vintage warm Fender reverb tones on the F channel and the M channel....something not found on the vintage Marshall amps. This amp will produce tones you have never heard before! It is a "gig ready" amp for the professional serious player! 

The design concept for the FM-5E3SD "Super Deluxe Plexi" was to offer a dual channel - dual voice 60 watt "flagship" super amp platform with all the goodies that our customers were asking for...including the Buffered Effects Loop, EL34/6L6 Bias Switch, 4-8-16 ohm output transformer, Presence with NNFB boost, the 3 Level Power Switch and retro vintage cage. Since its introduction, nearly 10 years ago, it has become our best selling amp.

The preamp voices are based on the Fender 5E3 and Marshall Plexi. Each preamp has its own Input Jack and Gain control which allows you to use an AB-Y switch to select either channel or both to create your own unique tones! The preamps share a low impedance cathode follower which drives a custom three band tone stack  modeled after the vintage 5F6A Fender Bassman tone stack. A Master control sets the level for the phase inverter driver which allows you to set the point of output overdrive. By adjusting the setting of the Gain and Master controls you can generate a wide range of clean and overdrive tones.  Both preamps share the same Presence control which is part of the output circuitry. There is an Edge Boost pull-switch on the Presence control that sets the negative feedback level to produce a boost in volume and a soaring uncompressed sound for dynamic leads. The combination of all these options generates a wide ranges of tones from Clapton warm to Van Halen hot! 

We changed the output stage design of the original Deluxe from cathode bias to fixed bias to give you a tighter sound and better pick attack...and we replaced  the 6V6's used in the original Deluxe with  6L6GC's to give more headroom and warmth.  For the output trannie we chose a vintage  Marshall 50 watt output for the original classic vintage sound. This trannie provides you with extended low-end warmth and those  incredible enhanced Marshall overtones. All the while, maintaining a perfect balance between the Fender highs, mids, and lows. The trannie  has  4, 8, and 16 ohm output taps which are selectable by a switch on the back of the amp. A three level output power switch was added to provide 1/4 - 1/2 or Full power. A post output transformer Line Out with Line Out Level control is provided for recording or driving a power amp. The Line Out can be used without a speaker plugged in.  It has an auto switched internal load to simulate a speaker if a speaker is not plugged in. This allows you to produce true overdrive distortion tones when recording without a speaker,

For the power supply section we used an over-sized custom power transformer which provides great voltage regulation so that you don’t sag too much when you get on it hard. The high-voltage is filtered for very low hum by an equally large choke and 4 large filter capacitors. A dual rectifier mode switch is also provided to select between a 5AR4 rectifier for smooth compression on peaks or a FRED  high voltage solid-state rectifier for sharp pick attack and dynamic bass.  

The amp comes standard with a heavy duty retro vintage steel cage that provides protection and ventilation for the tubes. All the parts in the amp are top-of-the line  including polypropylene coupling caps, precision  tone stack caps, metal film resistors, Alpha pots, Neutrik jacks, high voltage sockets, etc… It has military style tie wrapped cabling for rugged reliability.This is a rock solid point-to-point hand wired amp….a real one of kind collectors item designed to last for generations! 

If you like playing clean you will love this amp…but it will also kick and crunch and sing when you crank it up.  The sound is clean and crisp and develops three distinct types of  crunch and distortion depending on whether you are overdriving the preamp tubes, output tubes, or both.  It will give you the great high mids of the SLP Plexi and the warmth of the Deluxe….plus lot more!

 

Standard Features:

  • Normal (Type F) Bright (Type M) inputs with separate preamps and Gain controls with Bright pull switches for the unique smooth Fender Deluxe warm tones or the Marshall Plexi great high mid-tones....or you can use an AB-Y switch and create your own distinct tones.

  • Classic Bassman 5F6A style 3-BAND TONE STACK for extended flexibility in shaping your tone.

  • DEEP switch for extended Bass tones. 

  • Master level control so you can crank the GAIN's up and overdrive the preamp without overdriving the output tubes.

  • Presence control  - used to adjust the high-frequency response and damping factor of the power amp section.

  • Boost - Unique NNFB "Edge" boost switch on the PRESENCE control that transforms the power amp section into a No-Negative-FeedBack style amp for soaring dynamic leads. 

  • Reverb - Classic pure tube driven Accutronic long tank reverb for those great warm blues tones!

  • Effects Loop - pure tube buffered serial effects loop designed to perfectly match the low impedance solid-state pedal levels with high impedance tube levels.

  • Line Out - post output transformer LINE OUT with LINE OUT LEVEL control for recording or driving a power amp, Auto switched internal load to simulate speaker if speaker is  not plugged in. Inject great tone directly into the PA system with the Speaker Simulated Direct Interface.

  • Custom heavy duty output transformer for extended low frequency performance with 4 - 8 - 16 ohm outputs selectable by a rotary switch.

  • EL34/6L6 Bias Selector Switch - Allows you to use either 6L6 or EL34 power output tubes.

  • Dual Rectifier Mode Switch -  Switch allows you to select 5AR4/GZ34 rectifier for classic Fender sag.or Solid-State rectifiers for Marshall tight no sag tones.  

  • Standby Switch - Protects tubes from cathode stripping during warm-up

  • Tube Complement: comes standard with 4 - 12AX7, 1 -12AU7, 1- 12AT7, 2 - 6L6GC, 1 - 5AR4, but you can substitute 12AT7's or 12AU7's in the preamp and driver for different tones and overdrive sounds. You can also substitute 5881's, KT66's, KT88's, 6550's, or EL34's and KT77's when using the EL34/6L6 Bias Selector Switch  in the output stage for different sounds. 

 

Electrical Specifications: 

  • Input Power  120 VAC 50-60Hz - 175 Watts Standard IEC plug-in three prong grounded power cord. (100VAC & 240VAC available. See Upgrade Options) 

  • Output Tubes - Class AB Push-Pull 6L6's - Fixed Bias

  • Output Power - 50  watts RMS (100 Watt Quad of 6L6's upgrade also available. See Upgrade Options) 

  • Output Power Selector Switch - provides three power levels. 1/4 - 1/2 - FULL power. 

  • Speaker Output Impedance - selectable by switch 4-8-16 ohms.

  • Line Out Impedance - 10K ohms

  • Effects Loop Send Impedance - 10K ohms

  • Effects Loop Return Impedance -  470K ohms

  • Instrument Input Impedance - 1 Megohm

  • DC on preamp filaments to eliminate 60 hz hum.

  • Star ground system to eliminate induced current chassis noise.


Physical Data: 

  • Retro Vintage Cage Head  - heavy duty lightweight steel mesh cage provides protection and excellent ventilation for tubes. Comes with easy carry Fender style strap handle. Overall  Dimensions - 17" Wide x 12" Deep x 10" High (Includes feet, handle and knobs)

  • Chassis - Heavy gauge aluminum with welded corners.

  • Weight - 23 lbs. 

  • Rock solid point-to-point hand wiring with military style tie-wrapped wiring harnesses for long life and reliability.

  • Input and Output Jacks isolated from chassis for low noise, eddy currents, and hum.

  • Components:  Only the highest quality parts are used including heavy duty transformers, low noise tubular polypropylenes capacitors, metal film resistors, Micalex sockets, Neutrik jacks. All parts are rated for commercial high use conditions. Wherever possible we use parts made in the USA.

  • Front Panel:  F Input Jack, M Input Jack, F Gain, M Gain, Bass, Middle, Treble, Presence/Edge Boost Switch, Reverb, Standby Power Switch, Pilot Lamp, On/Off Power Switch

  • Rear Panel:   Power Cord Connector, Fuse, Tube/SS Rectifier Mode Switch, Reverb Pedal, Effects Loop Return Jack, Effects Loop Send Jack, Output Power Level Switch, Line Out Level, Line Out Jack, Speaker Output Jack, Speaker 4-8-16 Impedance Selector Switch.

Upgrade Options:

These options allow you to  customize your amp to meet your special individual requirements.

100 WATT QUAD 6L6'S -   Increases power output to 100 watts.   Add $200.00.

EDGE FOOTSWITCH - adds jack to rear panel for footswitch control on the NNFB EDGE switch. Includes classic heavy duty footswitch with LED. Add $60.00

HIGH GAIN- PREAMP - High gain stage added to both channels with pull-switch on M Gain control to select between  low gain or JCM800 style high gain.  Add $60.00​

240 VOLT POWER TRANSFORMER - for operation outside the USA  where 240VAC line voltage is used. Add $55.00

100 VOLT POWER TRANSFORMER - for operation outside the USA  where 100 VAC line voltage is used. Add $55.00 

MATCHED PAIR EL34 OUTPUT TUBES - Companion pair of output tubes to replace 6L6's.  The EL34's give more Marshall "British" type tones.  Easy to use...Just plug in and set 6L6/EL34 bias switch in EL34 position. Add $39.80

reviews

 Review By Featured Artist Leon Taylor  - "Taylor's Crossing"

Hey Guys, - Just a note to say the amp wows em everywhere. Tone snobs, even the average listener comments on the great tone. Two sound engineers at live concerts said to me "perfect guitar tone"  I now own two other amps purchased from you after hearing the first one. I just finished building another cabinet/ stack for a friend of mine who bought one. One I bought for the wife is the Purple snake-skin with red Hollowbody- the other is Marshall Red Elephant Tolex...I just bought another FM-5E3SD Super Deluxe-this one off Ebay.(why would somebody get rid of one?) This makes 3 in my studio, 4 on stage as our other guitarist has one. The best tone machine on the planet - I know it is for me, and has made believers out of those in earshot. My original has been flawless on stage and studio since day one over 3 years ago. Thanks for making killer amps affordable. Leon Taylor (Oregon)

Hey guys just an update. 6 years of gigging stage and studio, this bullet -proof Super Deluxe is still flawless. The Frenzel does a few things no other amp I have ever played on could do #1. With pre-gain maxed, I can still play "clean" the most touch responsive pre-amp ever no pedals needed. #2. The sweet spot is found at every volume. I assume this is some kind of Voodoo. #3. The amp can be played at full volume ... the chance that is actually a thing are all but gone, but I have done it twice with my 1x12 40 watt KT88 driven combo. It only sounded like itself -only...more so. #4. The line out works well and sounds like the amp. Clean, quiet accurate reproduction of the great tone. Many a sound guy has started to mic my amp, I plug the line out into a direct box in it's place and "Perfect guitar tone" #5 Best Effects loop ever. I have owned amps that cost 5 times as much that didn't do ANY of these things. Thanks for a great amp.  Leon Taylor 12/28/2017

 Review By Featured Artist JimRoberts  - "Jim Roberts & The Resonants

"I have  two Frenzel Tube Amps. One is a 25 watt 2008 Retro FM-5E3 Deluxe Plus and and the other a 40 watts 2011 FM-5E3 SD Super Deluxe. Jim Frenzel makes the real deal....and at fair prices that all can afford.. I used the 25 watt in the studio exclusively to record our "Devil on a Dirt Road CD."  You can hear How I used my Frenzels at jimrobertsandthe resonants.    All the CD songs are there and free to listen to. I couldn't be happier!!! I never go anywhere without my Frenzels! Thanks Jim!" — Jim Roberts (California). 

 

 Sound Clips By Featured Artist  J. K. Sullivan

Tele Bridge - J. K. Sullivan
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Les Paul - J. K. Sullivan
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Tele Both - J. K. Sullivan
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Strat Bridge - J. K. Sullivan
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Strat Out Of Phase - J. K. Sullivan
00:00 / 00:00

Review by Ken Morgan - Voting Member & Producer for the Grammy's

(Ken Morgan is a longtime musician, recording engineer and producer,.  He is a voting member of the Grammy, member of the Producers and Engineers Wing of the Grammy, and has written dozens of pro-audio equipment reviews for various online publications.)   

"Ultimate Guitar" Review by Robert Roy

"Beginner Guitar HQ Magazine" - From our friend  Ray @ Beginner Guitar HQ  - I was doing research on guitars and just finished reading your wonderful article in "Ultimate Guitar" on the Super Deluxe 550. Keep up the good work!  Warmly, Ray (New Zealand) *** Ray has written an excellent  detailed and comprehensive article on how to choose a guitar with 15 factors to consider according to science. It has more than 7,000 words packed with practical tips and advice. Here is a link  https://beginnerguitarhq.com/best-guitar/

Customer Reviews:

FM-5E3SD RETRO - Hey Frenzel Team - Proud to say, as of yesterday, I now own an awesome, lightly used, FM-5E3SD  "Super Deluxe with the Quad of 6V6's and the 6SL7 Retro preamp upgrades. It sounds amazing; looking forward to rocking out with this amp for years to come... Ryan D. "RCD Media/The Scarecrow Project Band" (California)


FM-5E3SD  - Jim... I gotta tell you, I have never heard an amp that is better that the FM-5E3SD  you built for me several years ago. It has a three-dimensionality and complexity of sound that I have not heard elsewhere. That head, when paired with my open-backed 2x12 loaded with vintage alnicos, is my desert islander. Robert S. (IL) 

FM-5E3SD - I want to thank Mike Gee Kustoms for the amazing "Rivers Cuomo Strat-o-Master" Guitar and Frenzel Tube Amps for the amazing "Super Deluxe" all tube Guitar amp. Without affordable High quality instrumentation and Equipment like this I would not be where I am today. Dominic Antonelli 

FM-5E3SDR - Hi Jim!! How are you? Just writing to say that I've received the amp today, and I must say it Kills!! Really really sweet, warm, I love both inputs and the reverb also sounds great!! Really, Im very impressed! Its so much better than my expectations :) Thank you so much for the attention and fast shipping. Thank you very much! Regards!! Julia Brandao. (Brazil)

FM-5E3SDR -Thank You very much! This is by far the best amp I have ever owned (perhaps played thru?).My Carvin guitar with DiMarzio super 2’s thru a Keeley compressor, plugged into a Mesa 2/12 cab w/Celestion V30’s gives me all the tone  I need and then some. Again, Thanks.  Brian S. (California)

FM-5E3SD - Hi Jim, I made a combo cab (see Pictures page)for my Frenzel Super Deluxe head......I’m pleased with the results and the amp sounds great!! Lots of compliments on how good it sounds (and a few compliments on how good it looks...lol). I borrowed some design ideas from here and there and added some of my own as well. The speaker and amp are separated from each other by 3/4” plywood and there are deflectors that direct the sound coming off the back of the speaker out the side ports.  Glenn T.. (British Columbia, Canada)

FM-5A3SD/6SL7 - Thanks Jim, Got the amp today. Picked it up at the post office, put the tubes in and used it on the gig. Sounds great! I'm really impressed with the fat, but still tight, compression of the 6SL7 tubes. Also the Lineout/powersoak/speak.sim is the best Lineout I've tested. I pulled back all the treble on the PA system and pushed the mid a bit to sound like the speaker I was on (marshall1912... which is dark in character). But then, the feel, which always is the thing that gets lost in the "line out" process, was identical to the speaker feel.   Kudos! Thomas D. (Norway) 

Hi Jim, I just want to drop a note of thanks for the FM-5A3SD amp you built me. It sounds better than I hoped for! My Super Retro Deluxe (6SL7 preamp) is gigging regularly and is a joy! Thanks again, I couldn't be happier! Christian S. (Washington)

Jim, just to let you know,  I am a 53 year old Blues Rocker that has played professionally for 35 years, I have owned, and still own Fenders Marshalls Mesas & Laneys, (just love the toys)  This is the most dynamic colourful amp I have ever used...  Brenton J. (Australia)

Jim, this is an astonishing amplifier. Thanks so much for your great work. Please pass my kudos on to everyone involved WOW.This amplifier is, for lack of a better term, lush and responsive.WOW. Thanks, Gary H. (Louisiana) 

 

Hi, there! 2+ years down the road and I'm still loving my Frenzel Super Deluxe Reverb!  Alex L. (Texas)

FM-5E3SD - Hi Jim. Sorry it's taken me so long to let you know what I think of my amp. I received it last Tuesday and I wanted to do an unboxing video for YouTube at my friends studio. Well life happens and we weren't able to do it till Sunday. WOW! It's everything I had hoped for, and more.... My friend and I played and played. Thank you for putting out a solid product. I'm sure we will be doing business together again in the future. Bob P.  (Oregon)

Dear Jim and Company - A buddy of mine bought a second-hand FM-5E3SD from another player in our small Canadian town and we both agree that it is the best amp we've ever heard (I'm a young feller but he's been gigging professionally for decades and has owned virtually everything under the sun at one time or another). Finally, I've got to say that you guys are geniuses! I absolutely love the way that you nail the vintage tones of these amps, but build them to a modern standard that allows them to be tweaked almost infinitely Mmy friend was running 2 KT-88s in his and no matter how far to the right we turned the volume, the sound would not break up without a pedal. Truly astounding! The way that you run your business is also a breath of fresh air in these modern times. You don't brag because you don't have to; your work speaks for itself- and speaks loudly for that matter. You offer remarkable quality at prices that put any other manufacturer that I've ever seen to shame (on both fronts).Tone wizards and nice guys? What a combination?!? James M. (Canada)

Hi Jim - Holy yowza!Thank you and thank you again! It is unbelievable tone and craftsmanship. Looks great and sounds even better. The rich harmonics are amazing! And I can't believe the great tones it gets when you push it into overdrive. Simply stunning. You have earned a loyal fan and willing brand preacher and preach the love of Frenzel amps I will. Thank you again. Your newest admirer and fan, Mike D. (Texas)

Jim - When I turned it on... it was like a dream come true! Absolutely georgeus sound! Best amp I've ever had (I had Peavey, Marshall, Laney and many others) and ever played (played almost every amp on the planet)! You are a Tube Wizard! Love the sound, light weight and simplicity. Thank's God I had the opportunity to try your amp and became a believer. I am proud to have it and to use it. Thanks a lot for your help and for your amp. God Bless, Art - From Poland  

Hey Guys, - Just a note to say the amp wows em everywhere. Tone snobs, even the average listener comments on the great tone. Two sound engineers at live concerts said to me "perfect guitar tone"  I now own two other amps purchased from you after hearing the first one. I just finished building another cabinet/ stack for a friend of mine who bought one. One I bought for the wife is the Purple snake-skin with red Hollowbody- the other is Marshall Red Elephant Tolex. Leon T. (Oregon) 

Hey Guys,  -  I just bought another FM-5E3SD Super Deluxe-this one off Ebay.(why would somebody get rid of one?) This makes 3 in my studio, 4 on stage as our other guitarist has one. The best tone machine on the planet - I know it is for me, and has made believers out of those in earshot. My original has been flawless on stage and studio since day one over 3 years ago. Thanks for making killer amps affordable. Leon Taylor (Oregon) 

Hi Jim, Love this amp - everyone who plays it is amazed at the touch and tone and all jaws drop at the price. Keep on building! Russ R. (Texas)

FM-5A3RSD/6SL7 - Everything arrived on time and in perfect shape.  Took longer to unpack the box than it did to get a killer Telecaster sound.  You guys done good...thanks!  Ken M.(Texas)

FM-5E3SD/100 - Hey Jim, Gotta say, this is one cool amp! I dig the tones I'm getting from it! I've recently had a few custom amps made that I just wasn't happy with, and then I went back to my trusty Frenzel DP3 that a bought several years ago and I just loved that sound!! My only problem was headroom, but tone was amazing! So I decided on the 100 watt version of the SD! I'll never have to worry about tone and/or headroom EVER!! I love what you do especially for folks like me on a budget. It's definitely great being part of the Frenzel family!!! Jarrett B. (Louisiana)

For more reviews please check our  REVIEWS page.  

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