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  1. #1

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    I have a Champion 20 that I use to practice on the couch in the living room. Have been able to dial in a sound that is not unpleasing and in some cases sounds pretty good for such an inexpensive guitar. For a long time I've been following threads about the Little Jazz and have wondered would this be a step up or be different qualitatively enough from the Champion to warrant buying one. What do you think?

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  3. #2

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    Quote Originally Posted by vashondan View Post
    I have a Champion 20 that I use to practice on the couch in the living room. Have been able to dial in a sound that is not unpleasing and in some cases sounds pretty good for such an inexpensive guitar. For a long time I've been following threads about the Little Jazz and have wondered would this be a step up or be different qualitatively enough from the Champion to warrant buying one. What do you think?
    A bit different, but not necessarily better -- that's really a matter of taste. I have a Champion 20, and tried the DV Little Jazz. I don't remember much about the sound of the DV, TBH, But I did pick the C20 over it (granted, price and weight were big factors for me). I've been very happy with the C20. I use it at jam sessions with drummers and horns, and it's plenty loud for that, and sounds really good(ridiculously good, actually; it holds its own IMO with AER and Henriksen amps I've played through at the same session). At living room volumes, I doubt you'll notice the advantages of the DV's extra watts. You might prefer its sound, but that's a hard thing for someone else to predict.

    John

  4. #3

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    [QUOTE=John A.;966657]A bit different, but not necessarily better -- that's really a matter of taste. I have a Champion 20, and tried the DV Little Jazz. I don't remember much about the sound of the DV, TBH, But I did pick the C20 over it (granted, price and weight were big factors for me). I've been very happy with the C20. I use it at jam sessions with drummers and horns, and it's plenty loud for that, and sounds really good(ridiculously good, actually; it holds its own IMO with AER and Henriksen amps I've played through at the same session). At living room volumes, I doubt you'll notice the advantages of the DV's extra watts. You might prefer its sound, but that's a hard thing for someone else to predict.

    John[/QUOTE


    Thanks, doesn't seem like it would be worth the difference for a living rm amp. What kind of settings do you use?

  5. #4

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    Could just be me, but the LJ is perfectly suitable for coffee house and small club gigs. Part of this is due to the XLR out which I use to go into the house’s PA.

    The Fender would is not up to this.
    Check out my tracks at www.soundcloud.com/billmcmannis

  6. #5

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    I own a C20 and I use an EQ pedal with it to get closest to the sound Im after. the amp takes pedals very well,and it can get loud.

  7. #6

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    I really like the Little Jazz, and I run it flat almost always. The tone controls are very effective, so there is a lot of room for changing the tone. As for the Champ, I have no idea at all.

  8. #7

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    I've been using the LJ exclusively since I got it. I have used it with a full big band, among other things. I had it up as far as I'd want to go -- if there hadn't been a pianist, maybe I would have been caught short for volume. Maybe.

    I haven't heard that Fender so I'm not commenting on it. But, I certainly wouldn't be afraid of the LJ.

  9. #8

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    [QUOTE=vashondan;966681]
    Quote Originally Posted by John A. View Post

    Thanks, doesn't seem like it would be worth the difference for a living rm amp. What kind of settings do you use?
    I Mainly use the Deluxe Reverb Model, bass and treble all the way down to boost the mids, and a little reverb. Gain and Volume depend on the situation.

    John

  10. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by Alder Statesman View Post
    Could just be me, but the LJ is perfectly suitable for coffee house and small club gigs. Part of this is due to the XLR out which I use to go into the house’s PA.

    The Fender would is not up to this.
    I'm not knocking the DV, which I'm sure can do loud/clean better. But, I've done small-room gigs with my C20, and used someone else's in a decent sized bar with a blues band. It's loud. Not as loud as my Princeton Reverb, but it gets the job done surprisingly well. It's a real amp, not a Pignose.

    John

  11. #10

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    My experience with the lower end Fender SS amps has almost always been very poor. Maybe they're better now, so who knows.
    As for the DV Mark Little Jazz - I really like mine.

    Great sounding and loud enough to gig with. Definitely not the 'Fender' sound - very much in the Polytone vein. Have done some reasonably loud gigs with mine and was very surprised how well it performed.

  12. #11

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    Ok, thanks. Tough distinction here and maybe since I wouldn't sell the 20 it the DV might be worth a try.

  13. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by entresz View Post
    My experience with the lower end Fender SS amps has almost always been very poor. Maybe they're better now, so who knows.
    As for the DV Mark Little Jazz - I really like mine.

    Great sounding and loud enough to gig with. Definitely not the 'Fender' sound - very much in the Polytone vein. Have done some reasonably loud gigs with mine and was very surprised how well it performed.
    Sorry to sound like such a salesman, but the Champion modeling series is nothing like the cheap-o Fender SS amps (e.g., Frontman). But the point you make about the Polytone vs Fender sound is, uh, sound. The models in the Champion (and Mustang) amps are all Fender emulations, and if you prefer the Polytone sound, DV or Henriksen amps are both better choices.

    John

  14. #13

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    Champion amps sound OK by themselves. But I did side by side test comparing my girlfriends Champion 40 with a Princeton reverb I had at the time. Both had 12inch speakers (my Princeton was a 12inch model) with similar cabinet sizes. Champ on the Princeton voice. I know it's not a fair comparison but the difference was startling. Playing Champion by itself, you don't expect that much difference because the voicings seem to capture the character of Fender amps (tweeds, blackfaces etc.). Nevertheless Princeton seemed to operate in a whole new dimension. Champions have crappy speakers, that might be a big part. When I compare quality Fender amps with quality SS amps (like Henriksen's or a Traynor that I have) running through the same cabinet, the difference isn't as glaring. There is difference in feel and EQ but not in "goodness" as much.
    Never play anything that's hard. If it's hard, don't play it. -- Joe Pass

  15. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by sgosnell View Post
    I really like the Little Jazz, and I run it flat almost always. The tone controls are very effective, so there is a lot of room for changing the tone. As for the Champ, I have no idea at all.
    I run mine with bass almost all the way off, mids at noon and treble at 11 o'clock. Odd, perhaps, that I'd have to turn down bass on an 8 inch speaker, but that's what I do. I do the same thing, more or less, when I use a Roland 40X and several other amps.

  16. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tal_175 View Post
    Champion amps sound OK by themselves. But I did side by side test comparing my girlfriends Champion 40 with a Princeton reverb I had at the time. Both had 12inch speakers (my Princeton was a 12inch model) with similar cabinet sizes. Champ on the Princeton voice. I know it's not a fair comparison but the difference was startling. Playing Champion by itself, you don't expect that much difference because the voicings seem to capture the character of Fender amps (tweeds, blackfaces etc.). Nevertheless Princeton seemed to operate in a whole new dimension. Champions have crappy speakers, that might be a big part. When I compare quality Fender amps with quality SS amps (like Henriksen's or a Traynor that I have) running through the same cabinet, the difference isn't as glaring. There is difference in feel and EQ but not in "goodness" as much.
    I have a PR as well. I agree that the PR model on the Champions is not great, and that the real thing is a whole other level. The DR model sounds much better, and is the one I mainly use. I also agree that the speakers in these amps are not great. But you have to consider the use case. Light, cheap grab & go that's useful and good for practicing and some performance situations, vs top-quality professional tool, that's heavy and relatively fragile, but works in many more situations and sounds as good as an amp can sound. I definitely like my PR more, but I use my C20 more.

    John

  17. #16

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    I have a Little Jazz and it is quite a good amp. I also have no problem with the cheap fender solid state amps.
    I used to take guitar lessons where the practice room provided a Fender Frontman 25. I found that amp very easy to dail in for a low volume decent jazz tone. Pretty nice really. I almost bought one!

    I think if you really want a different sound from your amp you should try a low power tube amp.

  18. #17

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    Have been able to dial in a sound that is not unpleasing(...)”

    Beautifully said!

    I’ll bet that Your Fender has a better reverb than DV. I had the Micro 50 for a while and found out that it’s reverb was not a reverb but a super fast delay. Made me feel claustrophobic, had to sell it.

    My rehearsal room amp cheapo Fender Princeton 112 (bought used for 80€) has a digital reverb, which is not great, but at least it is a reverb.

    The majority seems to dig DVs a lot so they are worth trying.

  19. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by Herbie View Post
    Have been able to dial in a sound that is not unpleasing(...)”

    Beautifully said!

    I’ll bet that Your Fender has a better reverb than DV. I had the Micro 50 for a while and found out that it’s reverb was not a reverb but a super fast delay. Made me feel claustrophobic, had to sell it.

    My rehearsal room amp cheapo Fender Princeton 112 (bought used for 80€) has a digital reverb, which is not great, but at least it is a reverb.

    The majority seems to dig DVs a lot so they are worth trying.
    Yes, I bet the Fender reverb is superior as well. The headphone jack on the Fender is probably superior, too, assuming that is important to you. The headphone jack on the LJ is unusable IMO.
    Check out my tracks at www.soundcloud.com/billmcmannis

  20. #19

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    I just put in an order today for a Little Jazz. I was looking for something a little lighter in weight than the Boss Katana 50 I am using. I am hoping reverb will not be an issue as I typically use very little.

    I expect I will primarily use it with my Eastman AR503CE for a Sunday evening open mic / jam event I go to.

    I found it was not the easiest decision to make. I wanted to keep the weight at 20 lbs or less and I found myself bouncing back an forth between the Little Jazz, Henriksen Bud/Blue, AER Compact 60, or Quilter. I just want one good jazz tone I like. Almost tempted to order something else for comparison.

  21. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by Alder Statesman View Post
    The headphone jack on the Fender is probably superior, too, assuming that is important to you. The headphone jack on the LJ is unusable IMO.
    Hi, Alder Statesman, could you elaborate on why you've found the headphone jack to be unusable? That actually would be a pretty big consideration for me (live in an apartment) ...

    Thanks for any insights.

  22. #21

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    Well, maybe...thanks everyone!

  23. #22

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    Quote Originally Posted by bmw2002 View Post
    Hi, Alder Statesman, could you elaborate on why you've found the headphone jack to be unusable? That actually would be a pretty big consideration for me (live in an apartment) ...

    Thanks for any insights.
    The headphone signal is kind of hissy and noisy. But I don’t use it anyway.

    The reverb is not great (sounds kind of artificial), but is ok if you just use a small amount (which is ok for me, I hate too much reverb).

  24. #23

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    In my somewhat limited experience, I've never heard a built-in reverb that I liked much. The DV reverb is ok if it's at a level where you can barely tell it's there, like other reverbs. I don't play surf rock. And the headphone jack is like the others I've heard, far too much gain, and noisy. There may be better ones available, but I haven't heard them.

  25. #24

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    Quote Originally Posted by bmw2002 View Post
    Hi, Alder Statesman, could you elaborate on why you've found the headphone jack to be unusable? That actually would be a pretty big consideration for me (live in an apartment) ...

    Thanks for any insights.
    Horrible hiss. I tried one besides my own it was just as bad. My workaround is to take the XLR into my Tascam DP-03SD and monitor through the headphones on the Tascam after switching off the LJ’s speaker. Tedious, but it works.
    Check out my tracks at www.soundcloud.com/billmcmannis