The Super Champ XD is a 15-watt guitar amplifier made by Fender. It is a modern adaptation of the classic Fender Champ amplifier. The Super Champ XD has one channel, an 10-inch speaker and digital signal processing. By performing modifications and upgrading certain stock parts you can customise the tone of the Super Champ XD to suit your playing style. The complexity of the modification depends on the location and function of the part you are modifying.
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Things you need
- Replacement power tubes
- Replacement preamp tubes
- 10-inch ceramic speaker
- Phillips screwdriver
- Flathead screwdriver
- Soldering iron
- Latex gloves
- Electrical tape
Make a parts list. The Super Champ XD is shipped with a stock Fender 10-inch speaker, two 6v6 type power tubes and a single 12AX7 preamp tube. By swapping the stock speaker for a premium, ceramic speaker you can add clarity to the tone, especially at high volumes. You can either swap the tubes for premium versions of the originals or you can use a different tube type to increase the gain factor. For example, replacing the 6V6 tubes for more powerful 6L6 types will enable you to achieve more gain at lower volumes. You can reduce the overall volume of the amp by swapping the 12AX7 power tubes for 5751 type tubes. Reducing the overall volume means you can drive the amp harder without overpowering your band mates.
Turn off the amplifier and leave it to cool down for ten minutes. The tubes get hot when the amp is on. Moving the amp when the tubes are hot can cause them to shatter. Unscrew the back panel of the chassis using a Phillips screwdriver. This exposes the tubes and tube sockets.
Remove the stock tubes. Lift the tube out of the tube socket by gently pulling it vertically. Slot in the replacement tube by gently pushing it down into the tube socket until you hear a click.
Remove the grille from the front of the amp. There are a series of screws on the side of the cabinet that hold the grille in place. Unfasten these with a Phillips screwdriver. Use a flathead screwdriver to prise the grille from the front of the cabinet.
Melt the solder joint connecting the power wires to the speaker. Do this by pressing a clean soldering iron tip against the joint until the solder melts. Tape the wires to the underside of the top of the amp cabinet to keep them out of the way.
Unscrew the speaker. The ten-inch amplifier is anchored to the struts with four screws. Remove these and put them in a safe place.
Pull the speaker out of the front of the amplifier. Mount the replacement so that the series of screw holes around the diameter line up with the existing mounting holes. Screw the new speaker in.
Remove the tape fixing the power wires against the underside of the cabinet. Put some solder on the tip of your soldering iron and gently press it against the bare end of the power wires and the input terminal on the speaker.
Tips and warnings
- Wear latex gloves when handling the tubes. This protects the glass from the oils that are present on your fingers.
- Stick all removed screws to a piece of electrical tape, in the order that you removed them. This keeps them safe and makes it simplier to put them back in their original holes.
- Modifying your amplifier can void the warranty.
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