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Since I just got one and been going down the rabbit hole, I want to make a video on the history and the difference between each amp. This is what I have so far. Google is actually not that great for this believe it or not. A lot of info on the 5150 and the 5150 II is kinda hard to fine and I ran across a lot of dead links. This is what I have so far. You guys prolly know more about it than anyone else! Let me know what im missing and what I got wrong.

Prelude: eddie was running a varic on his marshall, which was killing the tubes. Went to Soldono to fix, Soldono let him use the SLO-100 for a while, then eddie goes and makes his amp with Peavey

5150 Block letter- came out in 1992 (was prototyped by eddie since 1989 ish) The "block letter" had EVH printed on the front plate, that is how it got it's name. The Peavey 5150 I shipped with four Sylvania 6L6 Power Tubes, later with Ruby Tube 6L6 Power Tubes,when Peavey's Sylvania supply was exhausted ( as per James Brown, "Tone-Talk", Ep. 17). It was changed over to Eddie's sig or the "scripted letter" because of a complant from Electro Voice (make PA systems and use the fat lettering) There is no difference between the two amps. People claim they sound different but that was because of the difference in stock tubes.

Showed up on Most of the Van Hagar tunes on the FUCK and Balance albums. (unsure about the first time it actually showed up)

5150 Combo: Came in combo form, was 60 watts and had reverb that wasnt on the head.

5150 II late 90s early 2000 (couldnt find exact year) - before we get to the nitty gritty, let's see how it's different from the original 5150. The first amp housed a standard four 6L6 power amp tubes, and so does the II; but while the 5150 contained only five 12AX7 preamp tubes, the 5150 II adds one for a total of six 12AX7's. The 5150 featured a three-band EQ, whereas the 5150 II has two such EQ's (one each for the rhythm and lead channels) for better fine-tuning. There are separate Resonance and Presence controls for the rhythm and lead channels on the newer model, while the previous possessed only one set of such controls. The two models share the same bright/crunch controls (on the rhythm channel) and pre/post gain controls (both channels). The 5150 II allows the user to turn the crunch option on and off with the footswitch (a handy plus), while the other didn't. The 5150 offered two input jacks, but the 5150 II only has one (Peavey and Edward did this for some reason or another; perhaps because of lack of room on the amp's front?). Both models have virtually the same rugged casings; so if you view each one "from the knobs up", you can easily mistake the two for each other.





2004 Eddie leaves peavey 5150 renamed 6505 to commemorate its 40th anniversary

2007: Eddie Launches EVH 5153 Amp line (built and distributed by fender, owned by eddie)


2009: peavey moves all of it's amp production to china

2010 6534+ came out, had EL34 power tubes to keep up with the british falvoring going on at the time.

2012: 5153 50 watt comes out

2014: 5150 III 1x12 combo launched

2015: 5153 stealth is launched (dont know differences from normal 5153)

2016: 5153 EL34 both 100 and 50
 

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2015: 5153 stealth is launched (dont know differences from normal 5153)
I was reading about the 5150 Variations some time ago (or last year) and remember a thread with bit of info you might like:

The Stealth version has a bit more gain, thicker low mids, and a more aggressive sound. Probably the closest you can get to a 5150/6505 while retaining the tightness of the 5153. the 5153S also features independent resonance controls for each channel, while the regular 5153 only has a presence control.

Took it from here where they have more info and a link to other discussions:

EVH 5153 100 w or EVH 5153 100 stealth? | SevenString.org
 

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A bit of info to add to the 5150 II/6505+ (same thing): from a circuitry standpoint, there are literally only 2-3 components that are different from my understanding (if you Google how to mod a 5150 II to MK1 specs they only mention a few parts) and the 5150II also introduced an adjustable bias trim pot (though the range apparently is VERY small and still leaves the power tubes in a pretty cold biasing range either way).
 

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Its weird that the regular full size 5150 III head does not have resonance controls on back wuth the full size EL34 model does have one for each channel like the Stealth.
 

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I have a US made 6505+ that has a date of 2012 on it, so I think your date on Peavey moving their amp production over to China is early by a few years.

Nice score on that combo and hope you're digging it.
 

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From reading the long multi-part 50 watt thread, the stealth was a production model based on Eddie's current live heads. I'm not really sure why they never retrofitted the "OG" model to have the resonance pots since it is not a really big mod.
 

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There are like 12 million 5150 videos on Youtube, put out by 12 million Youtube-Sensation-Hopefuls.

Just set the damn dials on the thing to 6/6/6/6, apply volume generously, and rip it the fuck up. The world doesn't need another 5150 video. :metal:
 

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I keep opening this thread expecting the OP to start with,

IN THE BEGINNING THERE WAS NO TONE, ONLY LESSER CIRCUITS WARRING IN PRIMORDIAL CHAOS, THEN A PROPHECIZED MESSIAH OF SILICON WAS BORN, PIECED TOGETHER BY WIZARDS OF SOLDERY
 

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IIRC the EL34 model is based on the Stealth, and both are intended to be improvements on the original.
Ah that makes sense :yesway:

2009: peavey moves all of it's amp production to china
They made them in the US AND China for a few years.

There are like 12 million 5150 videos on Youtube, put out by 12 million Youtube-Sensation-Hopefuls.

Just set the damn dials on the thing to 6/6/6/6, apply volume generously, and rip it the fuck up. The world doesn't need another 5150 video. :metal:
This is truth. :smoking: Info for just wanting to know stuff is cool, but if you think a 5150 history lesson is needed then its a giant NOPE..... if you spent that time playing instead it would be much better spent.
 

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Just set the damn dials on the thing to 6/6/6/6, apply volume generously, and rip it the fuck up. The world doesn't need another 5150 video. :metal:
We ran them as backline for a festival here, and I have enough photos to make like, a hundred picture tribute to the ubiquity of the 6/6/6 setting. Pretty much every single band ran some variant of that.











The Infernal Coil dudes ran bass on 10 on theirs, but they were also blending in like, Sunn Model Ts and Sovteks they brought. Velnias dude was juicing it a little past 6/6/6, he's the guy that makes Atlas Cabs, his was a personal one that was older, a proper 5150.

When I had mine I don't remember what it was at, maybe a little closer to 5/5/5 than 6/6/6, but whatever, the difference is negligible, it sounds good on almost any settings.

Compared to the Mesa Roadster I had, if I added up all the time spent tweaking that it would probably be like, two weeks.
 

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There are like 12 million 5150 videos on Youtube, put out by 12 million Youtube-Sensation-Hopefuls.

Just set the damn dials on the thing to 6/6/6/6, apply volume generously, and rip it the fuck up. The world doesn't need another 5150 video.
This. No one cares. Just play.
 

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We ran them as backline for a festival here, and I have enough photos to make like, a hundred picture tribute to the ubiquity of the 6/6/6 setting. Pretty much every single band ran some variant of that.
As is fucking proper. :metal:

My 4th /6/ is the resonance knob, because I'm a filthy bedroom hero. :lol:
 

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I keep opening this thread expecting the OP to start with,

IN THE BEGINNING THERE WAS NO TONE, ONLY LESSER CIRCUITS WARRING IN PRIMORDIAL CHAOS, THEN A PROPHECIZED MESSIAH OF SILICON WAS BORN, PIECED TOGETHER BY WIZARDS OF SOLDERY
True Story. :yesway:
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Thanks for all the input guys. If you search youtube for a "history of the 5150" I cant find a video or even a website that runs down the actual changes and difference between each amp. A lot of info on the 5150 II for example is hard to find. I just kept running into dead websites. I just thought It would be cool to compile all the info I could find into one video. Also when you search for it on google, it just keeps redirecting you to the shitty wikipedia page that doesnt really detail much of anything. I also wanted to do it to educate myself on it. I just thought It would be neat.
 

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Thanks for all the input guys. If you search youtube for a "history of the 5150" I cant find a video or even a website that runs down the actual changes and difference between each amp. A lot of info on the 5150 II for example is hard to find. I just kept running into dead websites. I just thought It would be cool to compile all the info I could find into one video. Also when you search for it on google, it just keeps redirecting you to the shitty wikipedia page that doesnt really detail much of anything. I also wanted to do it to educate myself on it. I just thought It would be neat.
I can't remember where I read it, but I know the prototype for the 5150II goes back to the mid-'90s. James Brown modded one of EVH's main touring amps, and that mod eventually came to be the 5150II, which was used on tour to support VH3. You can hear it, as well. His original 5150 tone had a bit more of a slightly scooped sound to it, while his tone for the VH3 tour was a LOT more midrangey, tighter, and cocked-wah sounding, which is how I found the 5150II sounded vs the standard 5150. I also believe the amp was released in 1999.

EDIT: Actually just found it. :lol: It was from James Brown himself. He also says EVH used the combo amps onstage. He did this mod back in the Balance tour, and that eventually found it's way onto the 5150II.

https://tonereport.com/blogs/interviews/precision-tweaking-a-chat-with-james-brown-of-amptweaker

Now about the Tight control, back when I was working at on the 5150 with Eddie Van Halen, the tone was muddy due to the lower power of the combo compared with the head. It's a tough balance to get it chimey and chunky without going to the point where you think it sounds thin. We hadn't really discussed this tightness issue while I was designing the 5150 head. Once Eddie had said he was happy, I had stopped tweaking! So anyway, on the combo I started adjusting the tightness in the preamp, and he got really excited about it, and asked me to modify one of his 5150 heads to have this same change. That modified head was used on the Balance tour, and became the basis for the 5150 II amp.
 
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