According to some people the new Fender reissue amps and the originals do not sound the same.
As of this writing Fender Offer the following reissue amplifiers: Fender 65 deluxe reissue, Blues deluxe reissue, Blues deville reissue, 59 Bassman reissue, 63 Fender reverb reissue, 65 Super reverb reissue, 65 Twin reverb reissue.
I have not had one of each in the shop for repair at the same time to compare them side by side. So I can not say one way or the other, but here are some probable reasons. For some tonal differences.
Here are some of my thoughts derived from my experience as an electronic repair shop providing tube amp repair service over the years. In the course of providing tube amp repair on both the originals and the reissues here is what I have come up with.
First of all let me state that I think Fender has done everything possible to make them as close to the originals as is possible and to my knowledge the schematic matches between the new and the old units.
Production methods and component quality have changed over the years. Resistors for example are much closer to their stated value than they used to be. Which could account for some of the reason on older amps one amp simply sounded better than the same model from the same year. In other words while the circuits were the same the tolerance factor in early component design meant the circuits operated slightly differently from amp to amp. For example a 100,000 ohm resistor with a 10% tolerance meant the resistor could be anywhere between 90,000 and 110,000 that’s a 20,000 ohm window. Capacitors fall into the same category in regards to tolerance. However before you go out searching for old carbon composition resistors and old style capacitors …. the type of resistor is not the issue it is the fact that the values varied. Carbon comp resistors are also much nosier than the new film resistors. As far as capacitors go you do not want old capacitors as they go bad just sitting on the shelf. The electrolyte in them dries up. Other possible differences may include the manufacturing process and materials used in the transformers. As well as materials and processes used to manufacture the speakers. So in summation The new reissue amps are going to all pretty much sound the same from unit to unit. The old original amps are going to have tonal variations due to looser component and manufacturing tolerances. If you want a Fender 65 deluxe , Blues deluxe , Blues deville, 59 Bassman , 63 Fender reverb, 65 Super reverb, 65 Twin reverb or any one of the other many fine amplifiers that fender has produced. Even if you buy an original it will not necessarily sound as good as your buddies down the street does. Can you tweak the new ones .. of course. There are after market transformers, speakers and different tubes that are all going to change the way it sounds. If you want one to sound the same as your buddies original down the street. You are going to have to get your buddies and yours and bring them both in to the shop. Then every resistor and capacitor will have to be measured in his and the ones in yours that are a different value due to tolerance will need to be changed to match. If after that the sound is still not where you want it. Then it would be time for the after-market output transformer, then a different speaker, and possibly different tubes. Then if it still did not sound as good we would know it was just the magic from the 60’s that made them sound so good
Randy Morgan ….. Owner & head technician at All Service Musical Electronics Repair