Peavey Transformer – Version 2.0 Firmware Update

John Fera ( - 08/25/06

Transformer Home

Ordering information:

The order # is 99000974. (You don't really need to know the order number, though.) In US, call 1-800-821-2279 ext.1386 to order. Price is $25 US. 

In Europe, contact Andy Holland.


This started out as custom features added by Peavey engineers for added functionality. We just can't keep it to ourselves anymore, so we're releasing it as version 2.0 for powerusers (it does add a bit of complexity, explained here). Some of the new features are major, others minor, but hopefully they're all useful at one time or another. In addition, the free Windows Editor has been updated to handle the new features. Enjoy!

New Models:

Four amp and cabinet models were added. Since there are only 12 model LEDs on the front panel, combinations of LEDs are used to designate the new models. (NOTE: British Clean is the former “last” model, so these new ones show up when turning the model selector clockwise from that point – or CCW from Classic Clean.)

LED combination
Classic Clean w/ active EQ
Half * Tweed
Classic Clean + American Modern
Classic Crunch w/ active EQ
Half British Clean
Classic Crunch + American Modern
Am. Clean with 12dB post gain boost
Half American Clean
American Clean + American Modern
Classic Crunch / High-gain parallel
Half American High Gain
CL.Crunch + PV HiGain + AM Modern

* Half cabinet models have half of the EQ boosts/cuts of their full counterparts. Use for less of the same flavor.

New Effect -- Octaver:

The modulation section has a sixth choice now – octaver! It's a digital simulation of an analog octaver, but sounds different being after the preamp. Kind of like putting a pedal in the effects loop, but it tracks better. The LED combination that designates the octaver is CHORUS + FLANGER. The parameters are dry level and wet level.

New Globals:

Global preferences now include some new selections – Quick Boost being the most popular so far! (NOTE: to access, see the Tweak Table below.) Also, the USER ON POWERUP global is now set when the amp is reinitialized.

Cabinet Model Override
– default is preset’s cab (no LEDs). Any LED (or combo) will result in that cab all the time.

Input Adjust – 12:00 for no change. CW for up to +16 dB on pregain, CCW for down to -16 dB (1 dB per step). Increase this parameter when using a guitar that has lower output than what you used to balance your presets.

Attenuator – CW for full volume (default), CCW for -18 dB reduction of output volume. Use this in low-volume situations so you can set your master volume easier – using more range of the knob.

LED Enable – CW for enable (default), CCW for disable (all off except USER). Use this feature to turn LEDs off in environments where they can be distracting. (The knobs will still work.)

Quick Boost – Defines action of pressing footswitch for current preset. CCW for previous preset (default), CW to toggle boost without needing to use EFX mode (“quick boost”).

Amp Model Tweaks from Front Panel:

There are 5 parameters that the Windows Editor allows you to change after an amp model selection. (Changing amp model will reset them to the defaults for that model.) With V2.0, you can make these adjustments right on the amp's front panel. (NOTE: they are shown in the Tweak Table below.)

Pad – Disables 6 dB pad when up/CW (turn UP for more gain).
Preamp Lows – Allows more preamp slop when you turn up/CW (4 levels). Reduce for a tighter low end.
Bright – Enables bright switch when up/CW (higher than typical bright switch - more of a subtle shimmer)
Presence – High end in the power amp. Three levels. CW for more.
Resonance – Low end in the power amp. Three levels. CW for more.

Tap Function Tweaks from Front Panel:

The Tap Tempo footswitch can be programmed per preset to do different things. Previously, these were only selectable via the Windows Editor. In V2.0, they can be selected using a combination of the front panel and the PFC4 footswitch. In addition, there are now three alternate tap rhythms available where the “reserved” slots used to be. These allow you to tap the footswitch according to the song's tempo, with the resulting delay time being a musical fraction or multiple of that time. (NOTE: the front panel TAP TEMPO switch always works normally, ignoring these new rhythms and functions. That way, a simple Ό note tap function is always available.)

To change this parameter for the current preset:

  1. Enter EFX SELECT MODE on the PFC4 (and make sure it's physically close to the amp).

  2. Hold the STORE button for a full second, and continue to hold (yes, that's the Global Tweak entry, and this is a preset edit ... but the Preset Tweak does something else with these footswitches).

  3. Set a combination of the BOOST, MODULATION, DELAY and REVERB lights on the footswitch to select the tap function according to the following list:

Tweak Table:

A version of this table is in the manual, but the items in bold are new for V2.0.

NOTE: if you put this version in a 2x12, make sure to set the stereo flag (Global Tweak / Depth Knob) after a re-init.

Control Preset Tweak
(hold USER for 1 sec.)
Global Tweak
(hold STORE for 1 sec.)
Tuner Tweak
(hold STORE and USER)
On Amp:

Preset - MIDI Channel [Exit Tuner]
Store - - Store Tuner Tweaks
User - User on Powerup Eb mode
Model Cabinet Cabinet Model Override [Exit Tuner]
Pre Pad Input Adjust -
Bass Preamp Lows Attenuator -
Mid Mid Shift Frequency - -
Treble Bright LED enable -
Post Presence Bank Select Style -
Reverb Resonance Footswitch All-Info -
Mod Select - - [Exit Tuner]
Rate Flanger Delay Time Quick Boost -
Depth Flanger Feedback Mono/Stereo -
Tap Delay Treble Rolloff
Chromatic Mode
Feedback Delay Time Scale Noise Gate Sensitivity -
Level Delay Stereo Separation Noise Gate Threshold Tuner Volume
On Footswitch (while in EFX mode):

Boost Copy current to alternate Tap function set *
Modulation Copy current to alternate Tap function set *
Delay Copy current to alternate Tap function set *
Reverb Copy current to alternate Tap function set *

Tap function set is a Preset Tweak, even though it's in the Global Tweak column (that's what was available!)

New MIDI Controller Handling:

The PFC4 communicates via System Exclusive messages. The only channel messages the amp formerly used were Program Change, MIDI Bank Select (factory or user) and Volume (CC #7). V2.0 allows control of EFX SELECT MODE parameters using MIDI Continuous Controllers. This allows other foot controllers to have more control over the amp.

CC #1
(0-3f off, 40-7f on)
CC #2 Modulation (0-3f off, 40-7f on)
CC #3 Delay (0-3f off, 40-7f on)
CC #4 Reverb (0-3f off, 40-7f on)
CC #5 Tap Tempo (data byte is ignored)

Improved Tuner:

The gain to the tuner has been boosted for higher frequencies. This provides better note tracking when tuning guitars with low output levels.

New Factory Presets:

The original factory presets were in a strange order, and had poor volume balance. These were balanced with the new Input Adjust parameter at 12:00 (no change) and a medium-output humbucker guitar (Wolfgang). For hotter guitars, reduce Input Adjust to achieve the original balance. For quieter guitars, increase Input Adjust accordingly (i.e. By ear!).

Bank A – All-purpose jam (dry with effects initially off)

A1 – Clean Classic Clean (mod: chorus)
A2 – Grit Gritty Tweed w/ Classic cab (mod: tremolo)
A3 – Crunch Classic Crunch (mod: phaser)
A4 – Lead PV Hi Gain (mod: octaver)

Bank B – Blues & Beyond

B1 – Clean Blues Tweed w/ reverb (mod: tremolo)
B2 – Dirty Blues Lead/Crunch Parallel (more dynamics!), Tweed cab (mod: rotary)
B3 – Rotary Hi/Lo Classic Crunch, Tweed cab w/ reverb (mod: rotary)
B4 – Run Run Run Floyd-ish delay with Ύ -time tap tempo (re-sync by tapping Ό notes!)

Bank C – Clean & Country

C1 – Wicked Clean Clean and spacey (mod: tremolo)
C2 – Slappin' Clean Slapback clean tone (mod: chorus)
C3 – Mild Grit Slapback with a little dirt (mod: rotary)
C4 – Solo Lead w/ slapback

Bank D – Daring & Distorted (it's words with a D this time!)

D1 – Highs & Mids Honkin' tone could work in a mix, but sounds funny alone (mod: octaver)
D2 – Carlos Smooth Latin lead tone (mod: octaver)
D3 – Cupid Gain “I am El Nuno” lead tone (mod: phaser)
D4 – Fuzz Fuzzy Wuzzy WAS a Woman! (mod: octaver)

Eprom Installation:


Usually on programmable digital products we recommend saving user data to a MIDI storage device prior to upgrading, so that the data can be restored later. It's not a bad idea to back it up for various reasons, but re-initialization shouldn't be necessary after the 2.0 upgrade, so you can probably swap and go.

If you want to save your presets, a manual MIDI preset dump to a storage device can be initiated by holding the amp's TAP button and pressing the MODULATION button – the preamp LEDs will go off for a couple seconds to show that it worked. Using the Windows Editor, you can choose Transfer, Group from Amp, then do a File, Save As.


Lay the amp on its face to access the bottom of the amp's metal chassis. Remove the small metal plate near the center (two screws). The EPROM will be visible – reference designator U506.

Note the orientation of pin one and the "notch" on the chip before removing it! Then place the 2.0 EPROM in the socket. We recommend this procedure be performed by an authorized service technician!

It's safe to turn the amp on to make sure the EPROM is inserted correctly and working. Afterward, you can turn back off and put the metal plate back on.

If you need or choose to initialize, hold STORE and USER while powering up to do so. Then restore the data by sending the data files to the MIDI input from the storage device, or with the Windows Editor using File, Open (open the file saved above), then Transfer, Group to Amp. If you have the 212 model, set the stereo flag using the Tweak Table (2.0 defaults to mono).

Should questions or problems arise, feel free to contact Repair Assistance at the factory 601-483-5365.

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