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Phil O'Keefe

The Supro 1610RT Comet

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Does it sound as good as it looks?

 

 

comet-main-1eefcfae.jpg

 

 

To find out, click the link.

 

 

 

 

 

 

(I promised someone that I'd post a link to the review once it was finished... and while I don't want to give anything away :whisper:it's a little monster. :rawk: )

 

 

 

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Hey Phil - thanks for the review. Few questions:

 

- Is the cab mdf or ply?

- You say assembled in the US but curious where the components are sourced?

 

IMHO they seem to be getting a bit closer to modern reality with this one. Dave's focus [long before his involvement with Supro] has been big, loud and expensive amps relying on pedals for effects. This stands in contrast with many modern players needing small, portable amps playable in apartment settings with on-board effects. The inclusion of reverb and trem is a nice step forward but I wonder why they didn't do a trem output jack to adjust speed - all that costs is another 1/4" jack and a bit of wire but would add so much more utility to the playing experience.

 

You didn't mention price. Anything over $500 would be overkill, IMHO, for a PCB based design with PCB mounted tube sockets.

 

Don't get me wrong, Zinky makes a nice amp and I love Dave and Brian [bruce is Bruce], but it's important to understand these are Supro branded Zinky amps, not vintage correct Supro designs that were successful because they were cheap. The fact the originals sound great is a nice bonus.

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Hey Phil - thanks for the review. Few questions:

 

- Is the cab mdf or ply?

- You say assembled in the US but curious where the components are sourced?

 

The wood's solid. No MDF or plywood.

 

The components are mixed IIRC, although I'm not positive on that - I'd need to double check.

 

IMHO they seem to be getting a bit closer to modern reality with this one. Dave's focus [long before his involvement with Supro] has been big, loud and expensive amps relying on pedals for effects. This stands in contrast with many modern players needing small, portable amps playable in apartment settings with on-board effects. The inclusion of reverb and trem is a nice step forward but I wonder why they didn't do a trem output jack to adjust speed - all that costs is another 1/4" jack and a bit of wire but would add so much more utility to the playing experience.

 

I agree that would be a nice feature, but most amps with tremolo don't have that. You could always DIY or have a tech add it.

 

You didn't mention price. Anything over $500 would be overkill, IMHO, for a PCB based design with PCB mounted tube sockets.

 

Price is always mentioned in my reviews - it's in the resources section near the bottom. Personally I can't think of any 1x10 all tube USA-made amp with tube-driven reverb and tremolo that sells for anywhere near the price range you mentioned. If you know of one, please let me know so I can go check it out! :)

 

Don't get me wrong, Zinky makes a nice amp and I love Dave and Brian [bruce is Bruce], but it's important to understand these are Supro branded Zinky amps, not vintage correct Supro designs that were successful because they were cheap. The fact the originals sound great is a nice bonus.

 

I went into the history of Supro and pointed out that it's not the original company in the review's introduction, and also mentioned that while Supro had once made a model called the Comet, this is a new design that was influenced by vintage Supros, but isn't a clone or reissue of any previous model.

 

I also go into a bit more detail about the amp (in response to some other questions) in this thread in the Electric Guitar forum, if anyone's interested.

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No tremolo, but for $199 it gets pretty darn close.

https://www.monoprice.com/product?p_id=611815

 

That does look like a really good deal, assuming it's decently-well made. But it's almost certainly made in China, not the USA, and while I don't know for certain based on the limited info on that page, not only does it lack a tube driven tremolo, but the reverb uses a really cheap tank and may not even be tube-driven; they don't say for certain either way.

 

Still, if it is halfway reliable and decent sounding, that's an undeniably good price.

 

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But it's almost certainly made in China, not the USA

 

Without telling tales I don't believe there is much difference between the 2. There's this very blurry line between what is technically considered "made" versus "assembled" and that's about all I'll say on that subject.

 

This whole "made in the USA" thing is, respectfully, a real big crock. Having grown up in Canada I have been exposed to product from around the world and much of what was made in the US was garbage. So much so that the US government spent a considerable amount of money and effort to try and convince the world, and Americans, otherwise. Look into the history of the "Robertson" screwdriver head vs the "Phillips" for some idea of what's gone on. The US auto industry as another example. There's a reason Japanese and European cars are considered a premium and that is they are generally much better made.

 

and while I don't know for certain based on the limited info on that page, not only does it lack a tube driven tremolo, but the reverb uses a really cheap tank and may not even be tube-driven; they don't say for certain either way.

 

For the $1,000 difference between the two, you can buy a lot of effects and pedals that will more than make up for any short-comings.

 

Other examples are the VHT amps - inexpensive, well made and use turret boards consistent with vintage builds for easy mods and etc.

 

Heck, I took a Crate V8 ($279 and also sold as MIA - uses same type of Chinese sourced PCB/parts as the Supro) and added a spring reverb and tremolo for the cost of the tank and a handful of parts. Granted those are done on hand-made PCBs and the trem is optical, but it is a far sight cheaper than $1,200 for something very similar. And my V8 sounds great!

 

Still, if it is halfway reliable and decent sounding, that's an undeniably good price.

 

Those get very good reviews on Harmony Central and elsewhere. At the end of the day they are pretty much the same PCB manufacturing used on the new Supro's selling at a fraction of the cost.

 

I see Supros latest amp is priced around the $600 mark so it's nice to see them being a bit more realistic about what they're selling. I have no doubt the stuff sounds good, but that doesn't matter if people aren't buying them because they are priced out of the market.

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