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Discussion in 'Gear & Equipment' started by budda, Jul 6, 2018.
I have a “script” Peavey 5150.
I was unaware of this little trick.
Got a Vanilla 6505+ here. Nothing special. I also have an SS Matrix GT1600fx, and while I can be louder with the Matrix/AX8 rig and kill the speakers on my 4x12 cab, I can definitely say that playing through the 6505+ just feels better. That buttery feel of notes and huge sag when you chug can't be beat.
Just got a lend of a VH4S and it massages my ears. Never played an amp that made me less self conscious with volume.
Big amps are cool, I just don't own any tube amps anymore though since moving onto a digital > FRFR style rig.
The 6505+ will forever be one of my favorite high gain sounds though. I prefer the 5150II/6505+ to the 5150/6505, which is heresy, but I just like the extra low end tightness due to the stronger low frequency filtering
I got to play a Dual Dark a few times as borrowed backline on tour and LOVED IT. Hot dayum, what a great high gain sound.
One that really surprised me was the Randall T2 (tube/SS hybrid for those unaware). I suppose not technically "big iron" since it has a SS poweramp, but at 400 watts it puts out plenty of noise.
Again, a killer high gain sound. Hybrid amps seem largely a thing of the past, what with newer, lighter high gain beasts like the 50 watt 5150III and all the modeling solutions making them kinda redundant. Still worth a look if you can find one though.
JCM 800 2203s are of course fantastic. Unless I was playing in a straight hardcore punk or metal band with distortion all the time the 800s just wouldn't be versatile enough.
The 2205/2210 amps don't really have much of a "clean" channel either so that doesn't solve that problem , but are also killer sounding and have a surprising amount of gain too. Overlooked, but again, seriously worth a look
Since I've been back to playing, I've occasionally seen a Strategy or one of the old 2XXX VHT poweramps up for sale and have been severely tempted.
Back in 2002, a big group of friends that I was part of decided to throw a big Spring Break party up around Red River NM. Since there were two full bands and a few other players of various instruments in the group, we decided to take a bunch of gear and jam/play for the few days.
Being young, relatively healthy, and stupid, I took my Mesa Mark IIC+ Coliseum (I deeply regret selling this amp back in 2010), my Triaxis, and my Fender Twin Reverb reissue along side my two Mesa Halfback 4x12s. One of my friends who plays took his Triple Rec, his two Recto Traditional 4x12s, and the key component, his Strategy 500.
To cut to the chase, we ended up plugging my IIC+ Coliseum in to a little Thiele my bandmate brought up that we wrapped in blankets and bags and then partially buried (to block sound) and ran the line out to the Strategy 500 that was running my Halfbacks and my buddy's Recto cabs. We also at some point did my Triaxis in to the Strategy.
Words fail at how awesome this sounded. They also nearly fail at describing how fucking loud it was with the exception that when cranked, it was physically painful to stand in front of.
I bought the 500 from him a few months later.
Point of the story: Everyone should own a Mesa Strategy 400 or 500 at some point.
I just can't get into modelers and they seem like they require too much fiddling with.
Currently I have the following amps:
Marshall JCM 900 SL-X (EL34)
Peavey 5150 Sig
Coming next month will be the new PoweredByOmega Iridium single channel high gain amp with KT77 power tubes. I think this is may be the perfect amp for me and simple style of single hum/ fixed bridge playing style.
Wow finally found another SL-X owner!!! SWEET they breathe fire dont they!!! super underrated amp.
My amps OTs look so tiny now in comparison
Are there diminishing returns with transformer size? Is it a detriment at some point?
Why hasn’t there been a metal amp on the market that is 50 or 100 watts, but with transformers bigger than a Diesel Herbert’s?
Re: jcm800 2203's arent versatile enough, sure they are! Just use them as a clean platform and run pedals .
400w randalls are welcome in the discussion.
@mnemonic I think you'd get more volume with highly efficient speakers over oversized OT's at 100w.
No and yes. Depends on the design and implementation of the master volume. The Herbert (and all Diezels in general) have great and very effective master volumes. Otherwise, you'll go deaf fast. Those big transformers cost $$$ and are very high quality. So not many manufacturers produce these custom spec OTs/PTs in large quantity. Also the chassis has to be able to support such a weight which greatly adds to production cost.
The closest thing in a mass production amp I've owned was the short lived 120W Randall Satan. The OT/PT were also big, and the amp was close to 60 pounds in weight as well. The quality of the OT/PT were at a lesser level (MIC), and the sound of the amp was something different than most would imagine based on clips. Very dry, tight, linear. Not very saturated, "warm tubey" sounding, not very fluid overtones. But overall, the amp was very well built and assembled nicely.
I have an Orange Rockerverb 50, Thunderverb 50, and Dual Dark 100. They all sound great but the Dual Dark certainly just dominates a mix unlike the other two if I'm not careful with the settings and volume. Not sure if its the higher wattage or what because it is also voiced a lot differently than the other two. Actually I use the Rockerverb and Thunderverb live more often as the other guitar player in my band used a 60 watt power amp so the 50 watters seem to sit in the overall mix better. The 50 watters are loud(i've had louder 50 watt amps though[Marshalls]), but the Dual Dark is unbelievably loud. Ive never had an amp even approaching the volume of this one, it's just nasty.
I would assume it mostly comes down to price and weight. Transformers are easily the most expensive part of the amp, and they get expensive quickly. Even if you saved $20 on transformers, that would probably translate to millions over thousands of amps made....
Also, weight. People want little shit these days. Just look at how popular the 5150 III 50W is... hell, even I am thinking I want one, lol.... don't know if they can produce the deep low end though....
People definitely want lighter gear.
For those who tour, especially involving flights, lighter makes more sense.
So why arent we seeing composite head shells to reduce weight?
That is one thing I do like about the mini tube amp designs. Most use some sort of thin metal cage/case enclosure instead of the thick wood. I think that is a good upgrade that keeps the strength, but reduces the weight.
also why no toroidal transfo ? theyre supposed to be lighter and more efficient
Hi all. Got a Jet City JCA100HDM here. Modded to SLO preamp values and with the effects loop moved after the tonestack.
They don't tolerate DC as well, tend to throw off more noise, and they're (most importantly) more expensive. They could also only be used for power transformers (they aren't great for OPTs), in which case they may well be bigger dimensionally than the EI transformers we use now. They're also not secured anywhere near as tightly to the chassis (one bolt vs 4).
Re: diminishing returns with transformer size, it actually isn't just the size of the core - the material used (i.e. the grade of iron or steel) has a large effect on the saturation point (and therefore the dynamic response of the amp).
Those JCA 100's are great.
As mentioned above: noisey. Sometimes very much so. Also changes the feel of the amp.