Jump to content

Is my Orange Terror Bass 500 now dead?


BassYerbouti

Recommended Posts

My ten year old Orange Terror Bass 500 just died on me and am wondering if it is now not viable to get it repaired given its age and value. Its been faultless apart from going back to Orange for a warrenty repair to something that went pop after two years.

Mid way through a jam yesterday I lost a dramatic amount of volume which came back a bit by cranking the volume and gain way beyond what it ever goes even for loud gigs.

Today I've gone through a check of swapping guitars, all cables etc. I put in an old set of valves and had the cover off to see if a fuse had gone inside etc but all looks normal.  The jewel light, switch and fan are all working normally.

I am still getting a small amount of volume but only after it's been switched on for a few minutes.

I've run the XLR output into a mixing desk and am getting a good signal.

Before I go down the road of seeking a repair or buy a new amp can anyone give me advice of anything I can check myself with a multi meter etc as I really hate spending money  if I can help it.

Thanks for any advice.

Regards,

Chris

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, BassYerbouti said:

can anyone give me advice of anything I can check myself with a multi meter etc as I really hate spending money  if I can help it.
 

If you have to ask then chances are slim that you'd have the chops to do it yourself. The good news is valve amps are easy to work on, if you know what you're doing, and parts are readily available, so it's worth having a tech look at it, if you can find one who works on valve amps. SS is a different story, and the newer they are the harder they are to repair, if it can be done at all for less than the price of a new amp.

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

You can look for obvious things such as burnt components or swelling/ leaking capacitors, but unless you are happy to test and replace them it’s best to go to a tech anyway. If the signal is ok then it’s on the SS side as the Terror’s don’t use valves on the output/ power amp side (at least my 1000w one doesn’t and 99.9% sure the 500s are the same).

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

6 minutes ago, BassmanPaul said:

If the brute has an effects loop link send and Return with a short signal cable to see if corroded normalizing switches on the jacks are your problem.

 

 

Yup. Good advice. It's surprising how often this happens. I had the same problem with a Vox guitar amp. 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks guys. I now know what my effects loop is for after all these years!. Sadly it didn't make it any louder unless I boosted the line output on my effects pedal.

 

I will strip it down a bit more and look at the input jack closely and then have a chat with my local amp repair outfit but already I am getting the feeling it's time to start looking at something new.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

19 hours ago, BassYerbouti said:

I will strip it down a bit more and look at the input jack closely and then have a chat with my local amp repair outfit but already I am getting the feeling it's time to start looking at something new.

 

If your DI is getting a good signal then you've already ruled out the input jack being the issue. If I recall correctly there is one triode section (each valve has 2 triodes) after the effects loop on the Terror Bass (have the schematics here somewhere). Have you tried playing straight into the effects return and therefore bypassing the preamp? If so, try now swapping the 2 valves just to make sure the post effects loop triode hasn't gone bad.

 

EDIT: Found schematics. Yes, DI and Effects loop are between the 3rd and 4th Triodes in the circuit, as is the volume control (volume is post DI and effects loop). It's still quite possible that this isn't a power amp problem. Try playing straight into the effects return, then swapping the valves around and repeating.

 

EDIT2: Sorry - just noticed you've tried changing valves... Change of it being a valve greatly reduced then. Could still be a component failure somewhere around that 4th triode, but looking increasingly like the power amp. Contact orange. They MAY still have spares for it... Otherwise it's a valve preamp...

Edited by Bigwan
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Sorry to hear of your problem with the amp. I have a Terror 500, so I am interested to hear what the outcome is and whether you can get it fixed. It might just be worth contacting Orange customer service, they should be able to tell you how to diagnose the issue, if nothing else. 
 

Good luck and please keep us posted.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 04/10/2021 at 10:28, Downunderwonder said:

If you plug the fx unit into the Orange fx return it be driving into the power stage direct. If you don't get some decent volume you will know it's the power stage not doing the thing.

Thanks for taking an interest. Do mean put my guitar into my compressor peddle for example and then put the output from that into the fx return? Is that safe thing to do?

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

4 hours ago, BassYerbouti said:

Thanks for taking an interest. Do mean put my guitar into my compressor peddle for example and then put the output from that into the fx return? Is that safe thing to do?

Yes. Ideally something with a hot output like a BDDI. It won't be loud without a full on line level but if you get a staticcy mushy quiet mess it's a good sign the output stage is shagged.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

If your local place baulks then the folks who can definitely 100% fix this are jpfamps.com. That's 'cos they do all the official Orange repairs on the side. Nothing about Terrors that they don't know. They've mended mine several times to the point where it's basically a UK-built OTB. Lovely fellas too. 

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

14 hours ago, Downunderwonder said:

Yes. Ideally something with a hot output like a BDDI. It won't be loud without a full on line level but if you get a staticcy mushy quiet mess it's a good sign the output stage is shagged.

I just tried your suggestion with an overdrive peddle and got good sound . Loud enough to fill a small bedroom but probably 10% of what would get if I maxed the volume and gain on the amp. So now I am back to scratching my head. I'm tempted to buy a new set of valves but at £50 don't want waste money  if the problem is elsewhere. If the problem is with the valves would that not stop me getting a strong signal from the DI output? Mind you that signal has always been super hot on this amp.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think it's tech time now.

 

Unless the DI comes out before some part of the tube preamp that's faulty you wouldn't be getting a good DI signal.

 

Suggests the tubes aren't the problem but you could probably find the schematic to get a clue.

 

If someone in your area could lend you a BDDI, the 'line level' is enough to get the lion's share of output via fx return ime. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, BassYerbouti said:

ISo now I am back to scratching my head. I'm tempted to buy a new set of valves but at £50 don't want waste money  if the problem is elsewhere. 

You really should be able to get a good pair of JJs for about half that if you shop around. Appreciate it doesn’t change the fact that, if the problem is not the valves, it’s a waste of money but IMO it is always worth having a couple of spares. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

10 Years seems a decent run being used regularly and a value if considering cost per year; It seems through my travels in Bass Forums that 10-12 years for mid priced Class D/AB amps is when some failures start cropping up.

 

Getting it repaired may be half +or- of new purchase if money is a concern [if repair holds and no others lying in wait😀]

 

Maybe go checkout New Version and see if it sounds as good, better; If so and purchase won't hurt well....

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Bill's advice above is the only way to go. Take it to someone who knows what they're doing and has the right test equipment. Buying replacement parts on a hunch or willy-nilly is a waste of time and money. Not a lot of point in asking on here. All anyone can do is to speculate - we can't hear or see the amp (and even if we could, the vast majority of us would be none the wiser as to what's wrong with it).

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 weeks later...

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Restore formatting

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
×
×
  • Create New...