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  1. #1
    On Fire Warmoth's Avatar
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    12.20.12 @ 08:26 AM
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    Default 5150 III Manufacturing Defect

    Ok, so my brand new 5150 IIII that I purchased in January stops working last night at a gig. It worked ok at sound check, but then later on when getting ready to play the show, my amp would not function. It lit up just fine, the tubes were glowing, the footswitch lights were on, everything seemed normal ... other than the fact that when taking the amp off standby, it would not produce any sound. I thought I was going crazy. After several failed attempts, I finally switched out all the cables and plugged straight into the front of the amp, bypassing all my pedals ...etc... Still NOTHING! I had to finish the gig out of a 1X12 Combo and a POD. It was terrible. So I go back to Guitar Center today and let them know of my issue. They basically said to me that I needed to"Call Fender" it was my problem to resolve. I then told my sales rep that "No it was not problem and that they needed to get Fender on the phone and figure this thing out." Well, the manager got involved and they called Fender ... and come to find out, Fender told them that the first run of 5150 III heads have a known issue with the resistor wiring and that the amp problem I am having is directly related to that issue. Thankfully, it was 100% covered. Fender would not swap the amp out thru Guitar Center, but Guitar Center is having it repaired/rewired at no cost. Hopefully it will only take a week at one our local repair shops from what I was told. The Fender guy told Guitar Center that "Eddie wanted the resistor wiring a specific way, and that they were opposed to it at first" ... now they have fixed the issue and are not wiring the amps that way anymore. (funny they blamed Eddie ... I'm sure he has no concept about wiring guitar amps)

    Just thought I would share. By the way, the serial number on my amp is EVH 00004642 so anyone that has one in that "early" of the series, you may encounter the same issue. Be warned!!

    I still love this amp, and I think it is the best sounding amp I have ever owned.... but It's really a bummer that there would be a production problem on a half stack that lists for over $3000. ........ after all, my last Marshall lasted 20 years with no trouble at all!
    As usual, there is a great woman behind every idiot.
    - John Lennon

  2. #2
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    10.26.16 @ 03:37 PM
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    Thanks, good to know. I'm sure I'll end up with a 5150 III sometime soon... actually, now I'm gonna go looking for 5150 III's that "don't make any sound anymore"

    I build and mod amps so it might be a way for me to save a buck getting one...

  3. #3
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    11.17.15 @ 08:56 PM
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    Good to know...
    Fender really should identify, by serial numbers, which amps are subject to this problem and offer some sort of exchange policy through their distributors. At the very least, they should send out a recall notice to those who have mailed in their registration/warranty cards.

    If their distributors aren't even aware of the problem, It would lead me to believe that this is something they're just trying to "sweep under the rug" and that sucks.

  4. #4
    Whoa, this is heavy! Jedi McFly's Avatar
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    12.17.17 @ 06:07 AM
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    Warmoth, whatever component failed had something to do with the FX loop, yes?

    If so, the 5150 III head I use had that same problem when i first started using it. Turns out Fender issued a service bulletin letting all Fender licensed repair shops know about the problem and the fix. My tech had it back to me the next day.

  5. #5
    On Fire Warmoth's Avatar
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    12.20.12 @ 08:26 AM
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    I am not sure if it is fx loop related but it sounds likely to me. The shop that is looking at it is a company that handles all types of repairs for touring bands in Nashville. they didn't have a clue about the issue with Fender, but they fix everything so I am sure they will figure it out. I just want it back ASAP. I'll be using my old JCM 800 this weekend...hope she makes it through. haha.

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    11.17.15 @ 08:56 PM
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    Quote Originally Posted by Warmoth View Post
    I'll be using my old JCM 800 this weekend...hope she makes it through. haha.
    What model is it and what's wrong with it?
    The old JCM 800's sound awesome.

  7. #7
    Baluchitherium
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    10.01.15 @ 06:45 PM
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    Man, at a gig? That sucks royally. sorry to hear it. Good luck with it and thx for the info..I'm in the market for one eventually.
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

  8. #8
    Eruption LeftyVanHalen's Avatar
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    08.05.17 @ 01:41 PM
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    Sorry to hear about your problem.

    I have serial number 002646...not sure if mine is in the early runs. NO issues here but the first one I had that I returned the next day had the foot-switch that would not work. It was plugged in but would not work. I had them give me another foot-switch and all worked fine.

    I really love the tone from the 5150 III. I hope you get yours back soon and also hope this defect is an isolated occurrence and not prevalent among a lot of them out there.

  9. #9
    Good Enough SLEEPER5150's Avatar
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    12.03.10 @ 03:16 PM
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jedi McFly View Post
    Warmoth, whatever component failed had something to do with the FX loop, yes?

    If so, the 5150 III head I use had that same problem when i first started using it. Turns out Fender issued a service bulletin letting all Fender licensed repair shops know about the problem and the fix. My tech had it back to me the next day.
    You know what's weird.....My original Blockletter Peavey had a similar problem in the channel switching shortly after I got it. If I clicked off standby, I either had no sound or at most the equivelant of just above an unplugged guitars' volume. With those amps, it was a capacitor issue, but not as broad sweeping a problem as with the Fenders' resistor issue.
    The funny thing is that at the time the dealer who I dealt with who also was familiar with Peavey regarding this said a similar thing about it being part of Eddie's design. Now I know Ed's an innovative guy, but how much could he know about actual amp design? Weird Well at any rate, it was a quick fix, the dealer was also an authorized repair center and i had it back quite quickly once they determined the proper value capacitor for the fix. I find it funny though, that both manufacturers blamed Eddie for the design flaw. Who knew Ed was such an amp guru?
    She looks so $#@!'n good ,so sexy and so frail....Somethin's got the bite on me, I'm goin' straight to Hell.

  10. #10
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    Fuck fender & their bloated price tags! Sorry, I have an original 5150 Peavey & i'll put that badass mutha up against anything!

  11. #11
    Eruption LeftyVanHalen's Avatar
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    08.05.17 @ 01:41 PM
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    Quote Originally Posted by Plstrcast View Post
    Fuck fender & their bloated price tags! Sorry, I have an original 5150 Peavey & i'll put that badass mutha up against anything!
    And, you will lose your ass against the new 5150. Sorry but it's very true. I did a head to head comparison with a friend's original 5150. The tone was so much better on the III.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by LeftyVanHalen View Post
    And, you will lose your ass against the new 5150. Sorry but it's very true. I did a head to head comparison with a friend's original 5150. The tone was so much better on the III.
    Although I've only had a chance to noodle on a 5150 III, I'd tend to MOSTLY agree. If you are going for that amazing 90's EVH tone, the original 5150 head cranked is the only way to go. However, I would say that the 5150 III has better older EVH tone, and a bit more versatility.

    If I had to pick my favorite 5 amps in the world, I'm sure that the 5150, the 5150 III, and the Soldano SLO100 would be in the top 3....

    It's not like any of them suck.

  13. #13
    Baluchitherium
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    Quote Originally Posted by mrjstudios View Post
    Although I've only had a chance to noodle on a 5150 III, I'd tend to MOSTLY agree. If you are going for that amazing 90's EVH tone, the original 5150 head cranked is the only way to go. However, I would say that the 5150 III has better older EVH tone, and a bit more versatility.

    If I had to pick my favorite 5 amps in the world, I'm sure that the 5150, the 5150 III, and the Soldano SLO100 would be in the top 3....

    It's not like any of them suck.
    I have a 5150 and have tried a 5150 III. I now want a 5150 III. lol I agree it's more versatile, less noisy, doesn't have that buzz saw thing going when cranked and has a better effects loop. The only two advantages I see with the original 5150 is they are built like a brick house...Very dependable..and they have intense gain. The 5150 III is no slouch in the gain department but so far I have heard about more reliability issues with the III. Hopefully they have fixed the probs with it because in many ways, for me, it's a superior amp. I agree though that it's pricey.

    I play a mix of styles so the 3 channels works well for it. 1 is clean and almost fender clean.(makes sense huh? :P) Channel 2 though not as good as a Plexi is Plexi-ish and imo thats quite a feet. Chan 2 yields sweet tone. Channel 3 is the highest gain lead and not that far behind the 5150 for overall gain/distortion. I personally don't use all the gain/distortion the 5150 original offers..I like it dialed back a little more around 5 pre gain so no loss there.

    It depends on what you are looking for. If you dig that 90's Ed tone and super high gain and awesome dependability the 5150 is solid. If you branch out more and want more diversity and options with your tone/amp the 5150 III is much better.

    BTW new shipments for them are supposed to leave the factory in July for those having trouble finding them. I would wait to get a newer one because the old ones essentially had a recall prob with the loop I think that Fender fixes for free. I assume the new shipments do not have the problem..and who knows if they have tweaked any other dependability issues with it.

    Awesome amp. Hope to fit into my budget for 09.
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

  14. #14
    Eruption LeftyVanHalen's Avatar
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    08.05.17 @ 01:41 PM
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    Quote Originally Posted by At0micPunk View Post
    I have a 5150 and have tried a 5150 III. I now want a 5150 III. lol I agree it's more versatile, less noisy, doesn't have that buzz saw thing going when cranked and has a better effects loop. The only two advantages I see with the original 5150 is they are built like a brick house...Very dependable..and they have intense gain. The 5150 III is no slouch in the gain department but so far I have heard about more reliability issues with the III. Hopefully they have fixed the probs with it because in many ways, for me, it's a superior amp. I agree though that it's pricey.

    I play a mix of styles so the 3 channels works well for it. 1 is clean and almost fender clean.(makes sense huh? :P) Channel 2 though not as good as a Plexi is Plexi-ish and imo thats quite a feet. Chan 2 yields sweet tone. Channel 3 is the highest gain lead and not that far behind the 5150 for overall gain/distortion. I personally don't use all the gain/distortion the 5150 original offers..I like it dialed back a little more around 5 pre gain so no loss there.

    It depends on what you are looking for. If you dig that 90's Ed tone and super high gain and awesome dependability the 5150 is solid. If you branch out more and want more diversity and options with your tone/amp the 5150 III is much better.

    BTW new shipments for them are supposed to leave the factory in July for those having trouble finding them. I would wait to get a newer one because the old ones essentially had a recall prob with the loop I think that Fender fixes for free. I assume the new shipments do not have the problem..and who knows if they have tweaked any other dependability issues with it.

    Awesome amp. Hope to fit into my budget for 09.
    100% agree. I keep my fingers crossed on mine and reliability and hope it last for many many years. The good news is it has a 5 year warranty. That is pretty incredible if it holds true.

    I've had mine a year and probably need to retube it to some degree and can't stand the thought of retubing this beast! 4 power tubes and 8 preamps....can we say $$$?

  15. #15
    On Fire Warmoth's Avatar
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    Just got my 5150III back Friday. all is well and it works great. funny thing is, the repair shop told me the resistor Mod had already been done and that it was not the problem. They told me the issue was a loose tube bolt.... Whatever that means. It cost me nothing but they billed Fender 70 bucks. ha ha!!

 

 

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