Amp Clones vs Real Fender

laffytaffy

Strat-Talker
Nov 16, 2021
152
USA
Anyone ever compared an amp clone like a kit from mojotone next to an actual Fender amp? Im looking at mojotones 57 tweed deluxe kit and wondering how it would compare
 

jvin248

Most Honored Senior Member
Jan 10, 2014
5,633
Michigan
.

Here's an amp clone to an actual Fender amp.. Blind test.
While you might be able to 'tell a difference', is that difference good or bad or just different?




Here is a Fender amp set on clean like a solid state PA, getting all the Fender tones from the same pedal.



My path lately is a clean amp to give me volume and then get the tones from the pedals and playing. A small clean amp covers home use, a bigger luggable clean amp for bar gigs, the PA for even bigger gigs.

Kits are fun to build like a ship-in-a-bottle though so keep at it. Here's an interesting build from D-labs I've been watching.



.
 

Guitarchaeologist

Master Spuddler
Silver Member
As with anything else, a lot will depend upon several variables, e.g., the quality of the kit (which I believe the Mojotones to be pretty high), the capability of the builder, any mods from the original schematic incorporated, and very importantly, the speaker chosen.
I am sure @fezz parka & others will have some valuable & experienced insight.
 

Bill Moore

Strat-Talker
Oct 28, 2019
124
New Mexico
While I haven't heard an original 5E3 in a long time, I have built a couple. The first I used parts on hand, a DR PT and OT, and Sprague Mallory caps, and mostly carbon film resistors. I also used a Tube Depot PC board! I did a couple of switchable mods, but generally play it without those.
The second I built for a friend who was looking for as close as possible to an original. I built a turret board, it has Classic Tone transformers, F&T and Sprague electrolytics, Jupiter caps, and carbon comp resistors. He even found some NOS tube sockets, (and shields), and of course NOS tubes. It too sounds great, but a little less noisy than mine. (Maybe the Jupiter caps with the stripe on the foil end?)
5E312.jpg.JPG RD22.jpg I don't think you will find much difference between your clone and an original!
I didn't use the JBL long, way too heavy, it now has a Weber 12A125A, of course my friend found a correct P12R for his!
 
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CB91710

No GAS shortage here
Double Platinum Supporting Member
Feb 24, 2019
11,169
SoCal
Anyone ever compared an amp clone like a kit from mojotone next to an actual Fender amp? Im looking at mojotones 57 tweed deluxe kit and wondering how it would compare
Compared to which actual Fender amp?
As Fezz Parka said, the 5E3 kit will sound like the 5E3 did when it was originally built.
That 1959 Fender amp does not sound the same today as it did in 1959, so no, your new kit will not sound exactly like the Fender for another 70 years or so.

It's all in the values and tolerances of the parts used, and the speaker is an extremely important part of that.
But from the component side of things, the circuit is the circuit and if you build it faithfully, it will faithfully match the original amp.
 

StratUp

Most Honored Senior Member
Sep 5, 2020
8,964
Altered States
.

Here's an amp clone to an actual Fender amp.. Blind test.
While you might be able to 'tell a difference', is that difference good or bad or just different?




Here is a Fender amp set on clean like a solid state PA, getting all the Fender tones from the same pedal.



My path lately is a clean amp to give me volume and then get the tones from the pedals and playing. A small clean amp covers home use, a bigger luggable clean amp for bar gigs, the PA for even bigger gigs.

Kits are fun to build like a ship-in-a-bottle though so keep at it. Here's an interesting build from D-labs I've been watching.



.


I say it's A. Or B.
 

laffytaffy

Strat-Talker
Nov 16, 2021
152
USA
Compared to which actual Fender amp?
As Fezz Parka said, the 5E3 kit will sound like the 5E3 did when it was originally built.
That 1959 Fender amp does not sound the same today as it did in 1959, so no, your new kit will not sound exactly like the Fender for another 70 years or so.

It's all in the values and tolerances of the parts used, and the speaker is an extremely important part of that.
But from the component side of things, the circuit is the circuit and if you build it faithfully, it will faithfully match the original amp.
Sorry I should have specified that I am wondering how a 5E3 kit from mojotone will sound next to a new 57 tweed deluxe reissue
 

CB91710

No GAS shortage here
Double Platinum Supporting Member
Feb 24, 2019
11,169
SoCal
Sorry I should have specified that I am wondering how a 5E3 kit from mojotone will sound next to a new 57 tweed deluxe reissue
Comparable... and if you use Kester 60/40 or 63/37, it'll last longer. Fender is forced to use the lead-free RoHS solder, which is prone to premature cracking and flaking.
 

Groundwire

Strat-O-Master
Apr 16, 2021
724
Oregon
I have owned one of those kits, and I have played original tweeds. They don’t sound the same, but the speaker is the biggest difference. That and the tubes, parts drift, etc.

The 5E3 clone I had was great. If I wasn’t trying to compare it to an original, and could have just appreciated it for what it was, I’d probably still own it. But of course I wanted it to sound like a old tweed. Not possible. If it had been covered in tolex and marketed as any old 15 watt combo, I’d probably have loved it…
 
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