The symptoms exhibited by this Trace Elliot GP12 repair were a loud hum and distortion evident during note decay. Unfortunately I wasn’t able to replicate the customer’s problem which makes repair difficult, so I took a number of steps.
I left the amp on soak test for 2 hours, which involves heavily driving the output stage – this normally shows up faults that are temperature or power supply related.
What I did find was that one of the internal IDCs was causing audible noises when manipulated. I’ve seen this before with another Trace Elliot GP12 repair Mostly crackles, although there was a slight increase in hum sometimes which matched the symptoms described. Cleaning the IDC fixed this and that connection is now stable. I also cleaned the FX loop sockets because unused FX loops are a prime candidate for noises such as those described.
As part of a general service I also cleaned the Graphic sliders as there were a few little crackles – nothing to do with the described fault.
The next step in hum busting would have been to replace the reservoir caps. I avoided this because it adds significant cost and I had no concrete reason to suspect them. The description of the distortion on the note tail does sound a bit like caps, but the soak test didn’t reveal any problems with them.
The amp was returned to the customer. When I contacted him again the next month, the amp was still working well, another successful repair!
Note that the image is an old image, not the amp in question, it’s actually
If you are in need of a Trace Elliot GP12 repair, please get in touch via the contact page