Guitar geeks, help me find an amp

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workshed
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Guitar geeks, help me find an amp

Post by workshed » Thu Sep 14, 2006 9:25 pm

There is a chance I might be moving from drums to guitar in my band. Of course, this gives me license to start shopping for an amp even though it's not for sure, because, well, I like gear. It's been awhile since I played guitar in a rock band and I've since sold off my loud tube amp, which I will forever regret because it was a crazy huge rare Ampeg Portaflex combo with a 4x12 cabinet.

Anyhow, I am wanting Marshall JMP / JCM 800-ish tone. A nice sounding tube amp with some great natural overdrive. No heavy metal sounding stuff. Just a solid rock head. 50w.

The clincher, I can't afford a Marshall JMP or 800, most likely. I am seeking little-known tube amp gems, could be some vintage thing, or a more modern gem. I've been reading about the Peavey Classic 50 and 100 and those actually sound like great deals in terms of cost/sound ratio. I also have to buy a cab and am thinking of picking up an Avatar 4x12 cab, which will save a little cash.

Anyone have any other suggestions or opinions?

Style of music is crazy post hardcore stuff in the vein of Drive Like Jehu, Refused, Shotmaker, JR Ewing, etc.

Thanks in advance.

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Post by bocmaxima » Fri Sep 15, 2006 12:22 am

I have an Avatar 4x12 cab that I run my '71 Orange head through, and I think it might have been one of the best purchases I have made in my life, maybe even moreso than the Orange. :shock:

As for amps, I cant suggest one since I have never really been that much of a guitar geek, I just like amps with headroom.
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workshed
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Post by workshed » Fri Sep 15, 2006 12:32 am

bocmaxima wrote:I have an Avatar 4x12 cab that I run my '71 Orange head through, and I think it might have been one of the best purchases I have made in my life, maybe even moreso than the Orange. :shock:
Nice! Did you get it with greenbacks or celestions? Their prices are really good for the options they provide.

-Bret

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Post by Max » Fri Sep 15, 2006 12:40 am

Have you thought about Sovteks? Since I've recorded a Mig60 a couple of weeks ago, I want one. The last time I've heard a Mig100 it sounded pretty much like an old Marshall to me.

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Post by jaguarsg » Fri Sep 15, 2006 12:47 am

if you can find a london city, i think you'll be quite pleased.

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vatoben
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Post by vatoben » Fri Sep 15, 2006 12:57 am

i've read good things about the fargans:

http://www.fargenamps.com/

i definitely want a mini-plex. i was looking at the marshall handwired 2061x and the fargen is less than half the price. i'm not sure if they do the same thing but i'm pretty sure i'd be able to use either often.

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Post by eh91311 » Fri Sep 15, 2006 1:51 am

I too have a Avatar 412 cab and it's great. I have 2 Vintage 30's and 2 Heritage 30's in it. Bright, deep low end and very loud.

The Peavey Classic heads are good values but if you prefer a JCM800 tone you might not like the Peaveys, they are very dark-sounding when cranked.

If you use an overdrive pedal in front, almost any 50/100 watt tube guitar amp head will yield a decent hard-rock guitar tone. IMO, amps with EL34 tubes have more crunch than 6L6 tubed amps, If you prefer amp overdrive, your choices are much more limited.

The sleeper hard-rock tube amp (on the west coast at least) are the late 80's early 90's Carvin X60 and X100B heads. They are virtually dirt cheap because most people hate them. They were made first with 6L6 tubes, later with EL34's. If you get a good one you're in luck.

Late 80's/90's Laney AOR/ProTube heads are another option but a little more pricey.

Only a Marshall sounds like a Marshall, though.

FlowersForHuman
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Post by FlowersForHuman » Fri Sep 15, 2006 3:12 am

im a combo guy so ill send you my pix...maybe one of the 1980's riviera-made fenders, i forget which model..deluxe maybe?a lot of them have ugly red knobs...or the small laneys, like the 30 watt class A ones...and the Crate club 30 or even 50 if you require way too much power than you will every realistically use. I guess 900s and 800s have gone up in price since i was looking at them last.

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Post by Harry » Fri Sep 15, 2006 5:32 am

A friend of mine has a Peavey classic 30 and it sounds awesome,and it's loud as hell....I'm sure the 50 could play any room/arena and sound great.

Harry

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Post by modernkicks » Fri Sep 15, 2006 5:46 am

Try to look for a Peavey 5150. I have one, and I DO complain about it and want something else, but I'm REALLLY picky, guitarwise.
I forget how great of an amp it really is. Especially considering I got it for $200. It's very versatile, and I can get a pretty decent tone out of it for almost anything. It's a GREAT head for the type of thing you're playing. Not hard at all to get a Marshall-ish tone out of it.
Make sure you look for an earlier block logo, though (the "EVH" will be in a sans-serif font, NOT "autographed" looking.)
I think used ones can be found for $400 to $500 on Ebay.

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Post by KennyLusk » Fri Sep 15, 2006 7:40 am

I'll 2nd the Sovtek's. I played a Mig60 a few times that sounded just like a 1964 Lead 100 MOSFET I had with a 4X10 half stack. Dark, muddy, authoritative and very beefy. You can also customize the voicing on them by rolling in different tubes. Tesla manufactures some fantastic replacements.
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Re: Guitar geeks, help me find an amp

Post by Johnny B » Fri Sep 15, 2006 8:01 am

workshed wrote:Anyhow, I am wanting Marshall JMP / JCM 800-ish tone. A nice sounding tube amp with some great natural overdrive. No heavy metal sounding stuff. Just a solid rock head. 50w.

The clincher, I can't afford a Marshall JMP or 800, most likely. I am seeking little-known tube amp gems, could be some vintage thing, or a more modern gem. I've been reading about the Peavey Classic 50 and 100 and those actually sound like great deals in terms of cost/sound ratio. I also have to buy a cab and am thinking of picking up an Avatar 4x12 cab, which will save a little cash.
I love my Classic 50 (I have the 2-12 combo version, though, not the head), but it doesn't sound like a Marshall. Which, as far as I'm concerned, is fine, but if that's the sound you really want, that amp may disappoint. It is, however, AFAIC a good, solid tube amp that works well for rock stuff.

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I'm Painting Again
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Post by I'm Painting Again » Fri Sep 15, 2006 9:46 am

the traynor tube yba amps are marshall clones..and can be found sometimes for a bargain..

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workshed
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Post by workshed » Fri Sep 15, 2006 9:56 am

Wow, thanks for all the great suggestions. You guys rule! Interesting about the Sovteks. It seems like a lot of the ones I've heard in the past (the past being 10+ years ago) were not the best sounding, but maybe they were some of the off models?

I'll definitely check into the other amps. As for it having to sound like a marshall, that's not a necessity... just a point of reference. I'll be competing against an SVT bass head with an 8x10 cab and a JCM 800 50W w/ 4x12 cab. And a loud drummer.

I've played Marshalls in the past; I had a JCM900, which I always thought was way too thin sounding, and a 100W Superbass that had been modified with an overdrive circuit (that sounded pretty lame), but a tubescreamer through that thing clean sounded awesome. I kinda regret letting that one go.

Anyhow, I digress.

Anyone know anything about old Univox heads? Some of them are just awesome looking, but I wonder if they sound any good. And a buddy of mine who has built some amps recommended a Bandmaster, Ampeg B25 and Ampeg V4. I haven't been too crazy about the bandmasters I've heard in the past, but I thought the Ampegs sound interesting.

Thanks again.

-Bret

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mikeyc
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Post by mikeyc » Fri Sep 15, 2006 10:27 am

I'll second the Crate Vintage Clubs... They sound great and Crate's even nice enough to not put their logo on the front of the amp. :lol:

If you can find one, Red Bear amps are pretty cool. I bought an MK120 a few years ago for $250 and now it's the one amp I wish I never sold. It was pretty dark but super loud and it also sounded great on bass.

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