Making a beast of an amp

Asuming you mean louder as in higher peak SPL, you can swithc to a more efficient speaker. 3dB more efficient speaker is equal to doubling your amps power.
If you mean louder as in more touchsensitive and more distortion, you can mod the preamp section for more gain. Depends on SS or tube how successful that will be.
What amp is it that you wish to mod?
Well, that combo only has an 8" speaker. No wonder it's not loud.
Get a decent 12", like Jensen, Celestion, or Eminence with SPL around 100dB/watt and you'll be set. Two 12" in parallell will give you even more. With that easy mod he effect will be like playing thru a 40watter, compared to the 8" you are using now.
A good 12" is a good investment anyways, and later if you upgrade to a tube head, you'll be even more set.
Please... thrash away that amp... for a few bucks you can buy something better... aside from that, it isn't possible to make an amp louder from an electronical point of view (or from a cheap point of view :whazzat: ). The Frontman is powered by a chip amp: higher power would mean different chip, redesign of the pcbs, beefier transformer, more capacitance in the psu...

If you only need a little more, try to switch on more efficient speakers. But keep in mind that:

1) take care of the speaker impedance: a such low-cost power amp isn't happy on driving a mismatched load. Someone here suggested to use multiple speakers: pay attention to obtain from them the same impedance of the original speaker.
2) Fender is putting in their small practice amps very efficient speakers to attract the little 13years old "guitarists": it is difficult to find a speaker that has more sensitivity.

In the end, I suggest you to buy a new amp. Little 15W tube amps are cheap, loud (more than equivalent SS amps), easy to modify. And they sound good, and don't forget that you could easily build it yourself. Hey, we're at diyaudio here!

I agree with Giaime, get a better amp. There are som nice kits out there so u can build a small tube geetar amp pretty easily.
However. If u're on a budget and can only build up your system over time, I still think it would be good to get a decent speaker cab with two 12" drivers. I'm pretty sure u will get louder than the stock 8inch unit in the Fender, and when u later upgrade to tube u will already have a speaker cab so the total investment will be spread over time.
Yes I agree with you. A decent cab is everytime an investment (I wish I thought about this... ), and probably will help in your situation. And also remember that if you buy a cab, when you'll build your own tube amp you only have to make an head (read: cheap) instead of an expensive combo, with all the woodworking involved (which isn't easy for everyone - not saying that dealing with 400V is easier :hot:).

You mean you want to build the cab? It ain't gonna be cheaper than a commercial one, and it's all woodworking... not easy to make a cab that will last years of band/gigging abuse. Better buy one... but if you want to do you're fine... look at existing cabs and how they are designed. For speakers I suggest you Eminence, they're cheap but good sounding replicas of Celestions and Jensens.

For the amp, I suggest you There you will find many well documented projects, and even a forum in case you'll have troubles. And there are also sound samples of the amps.

Read a lot about safety guides when it comes to tubes, they're dangerous.


Btw you didn't say what is your stile... if you do I would suggest a good amp for your music...
Hey I like rock music and a bit of good old metal. However my band are thinking of doing country songs for weddings. Mixing it up! Surely you could make a cheaper cab yourself, those things are rip offs. Anyway I'm new to this game and feel like taking on a project over the summer to keep me busy. However I am worried about the safety aspect. I don't want to be toast y'know.
If you're sure you can make a cab cheaply, go for it. There aren't dangers inside (if you can safely use woodworking tools!).

Remember that good speakers cost about 50-80$ each, and for 300/400$ I can find even here in Italy a decent cab for that price... there in the States will be even better...

I think you should concentrate on amps. Read about safety, even here at diyaudio, or in other sites. Try here:

There are a lot of forums on guitar tube amp building, you can have some help here:
I live in Northern Ireland by the way, but I guess when you count it up like that. I just feel like I am being ripped off everywhere I go. I'm not sure because it may be too much of a project to take on, I looked at the beginners project on the ax84 website and looked very complicated. And where am I supposed to get all those parts? Insane. I'll think about it.

I'd be scared of spending all that money and not pulling it off.
Oh exuse me for having mislooked your country... I've just looked at the colors of the flag... they're the same :smash:

Don't feel frustrated. All those parts are easy to find, even ordering them by the net. If you don't know what a part is, ask here or in the nearest electronic shop in your city.

We're here to help you!

The only thing you must understand from the starting point is safety rules :hot:

Start by practicing your soldering skills. Buy a piece of breadboard and a bag of resistors, they're cheap. Solder each one in the board just to practice... or find an old TV, VCR, maybe tube amp in which you can practice your wiring skills. Remove wires and replace them with new wire. These are good ways to learn how to solder.

Any questions welcome!
Hey hows it goin
well I have worked on easy circuits in school (I am currently doing Alevel technology) but I've only worked with battery circuits so it wasn't dangerous. I may give the project a go just to say I've done it because the beginner on the ax84 site is a small amp, yes? I was indded after a beast of an amp but what can you do:)
Well, given the dangers of working in a tube amp, a big bad a** tube amp (a quad of KT88 at 700V B+ :hot: ) is far more dangerous. I think it is better to start with a little amp.

But now I want to clarify what I mean with little amp. I don't mean those little 5W single-ended ones, I mean a push pull ones, maybe EL84 or 6V6, 20W output... that is gonna do even with a full band. It really depends on your style... if you like rock go for a November, for clean I'd go for a California Dreamer, for metal it's a bit difficult, I suggest that you build whatever amp and then, when you're more experienced, add a second channel to the amp to do the heaviest metal.

See you...