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-   -   The ONLY Vintage amp and Re-Issue thread! (http://www.ultimate-guitar.com/forum/showthread.php?t=954958)

DerekTheDominoe 09-10-2008 12:02 AM

The ONLY Vintage amp, Vintage Voiced and Re-Issue thread!
 
Before this thing turns into an epic failure, let me elaborate on WHY I made this:

I love vintage amps and their re-issues of today. The problem is, most UGers tend to be specialized in modern amps.

So, if you have a question about buying a vintage amp or a re-issue, a question about your amp's value or you just wanna talk about 'em, come here and post!

EDIT: While we're at it, we'll also be talking about vintage voiced amps ( Laney VC series, Orange AD30, etc.) and how they compare to the true vintage ones.

I'll start writing about these amps on the front page if this thread doesn't die.

So, to sum it up:

This thread is:
-A "which amp" thread?
-A discussion thread
-A review thread
-Hell, anything you'd see on the Orange or Peavey threads is applicable here.

Some"Clone" amp companies:
Allen amps ( Fender style amps)
Ceriatone ( They clone various amps)
Metro amps ( Vintage Plexi clones)
Germino amps ( Marshall plexi clones)
Splawn amps ( Hot rodded Marshall plexis)
Reinhart amps ( tweaked vintage plexi clones)
Victoria amps ( Fender tweed clones)

Clones:
Now, while re-issues are fairly accurate copies of a company's vintage amp, a clone is a near 100% accurate copy of the vintage amp. Clone companies use the highest quality materials and make sure that their amps sound exactly like the amps they're cloning. Now, they also mod them, too. Splawn adds extra gain and a master volume to it's plexis, while Allen amps add small modifications to the circuitry to make their Fender clones sound unique. These amps aren't sold in stores and are handwired, so you have to get them used or buy them from the company. The Fact that they're handwired also means that labor will cost more. These amps usually cost more than the re-issues, but are (mostly) worth it. Why get a "similar" amp when you can get a clone of the real thing?


Vintage amps: why go vintage?
These days, you can get a re-issue of your favorite vintage amp for a fraction of the cost, but when you play it, you'll notice that it doesn't sound like an older one. Why?
Quality, that's why. Amp companies use standard modern components to build their amps. Sure, they might use similar speakers and tubes, but usually, the circuit boards are PCB boards, the power and output transformers are different and the wood used is lower quality. They do this to cut cost, due to the fact that they mass-produce these amps.

If you don't have the dough for a real vintage amp, a re-issue is a great starting point. Why? Because you can mod it to original specs.

Now, let's talk about vintage amps.

Many vintage amps actually go for the same price as their re-issues, while some go for more. The reason for this is simple: Supply and demand.
There weren't many original Marshall 1962 combos made, but so when Marshall re-issued it, everyone wanted a piece of that historic tone. That's why the RI combos are so rare and expensive. I've been to dozens of different music stores and I only found 2 that carried the bluesbreaker. They were both located in New York City.

Now, the opposite is also true. Let's use the Fender Bassman for example:

Fender amps were made to be mass produced, so they released a huge amount of them over the years. This means that (especially in the US) they are very easy to come by. The best sounding amp I've ever played was a '68 silverface bassman. It is considered and undesirable model, but sounds better than any other re-issue out there. You could also get the head and cab for only 700$. Supply and demand; people will pay more money for things they can't get.

So, buying vintage amps is tricky, because their prices don't mean as much as they would do with re-issues. You have to try them out for yourself, and buy according to SOUND, not future VALUE, because that BluesBreaker will always be worth more than that Bassman, but it doesn't mean that it sounds better!

Wanna hear some vintage Marshalls ( links courtesy of Al, the thread's resident "guy who knows everything".)

And some awesome playing courtesy of Todd Duane, who just has a sick collection of Marshalls:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CiWL...feature=related (50 watt JMP, MF)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GJJC...feature=related
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uqCC...feature=related (Superbass)
(not a Marshall, but pseudo-Marshall tone)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Sf2...feature=related (ditto on this one)
So, here are the rules:


A vintage amp is a amp that you believe is vintage. Nothing after 1990, please!
Please don't troll or bash companies.

HighPotency 09-10-2008 12:08 AM

Marshall plexiglass originals...

/thread i guess.

al112987 09-10-2008 12:12 AM

I like this, I love talking about vintage gear and their reissues, clones, mods, etc.

And I agree, all the talk about finding amps for "br00t4lz" gain and drop A tunings gets a bit bland.

DerekTheDominoe 09-10-2008 12:42 AM

Ok, I'll guess we'll have to wait for questions.

But, to start the thread off, I'd like to ask:

What are the best Marshall clones for the money? I know about Metro and Ceriatone, but would there be any other companies that do em as good or better?

al112987 09-10-2008 03:29 PM

I was looking at Marshall clones for about a year while searching for my last amp and basically came to the conclusion that the best is Metropoulos, there are modded versions of the original Marshall circuits that are hand built and use top quality components but Metropoulos makes the best clones in terms of historical accuracy. George has a bunch of old vintage Marshalls that he uses for reference, has his transformers custom built for him, and he, along with the rest of the guys at Metro are all just great and helpful people in general.

And I mean seriously. Tell me these don't sound just incredible.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iFzm...feature=related (JTM45 with 2x12 Celestion alnico golds)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tSmV...feature=related (JTM45 with 4x12 Celestion alnico blues)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9_ae...feature=related (1968 spec 100 watt SLP)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ltD2...feature=related (1966 spec 100 watt JTM45/100)

Other good builders that I've heard about are...

Greg Germino's amps

http://www.germinoamps.com/amplifiers.htm

Louis Electric makes a hell of a Bluesbreaker/JTM45 as well (check out that "Hideaway" clip!)

http://www.louisamps.com/content/BLUESBREAKER.asp

and...

Soultone

Reinhardt
(these are clips of the Sentinel, JTM45 w/ solid state rectifier option)



Make classic Marshall amps with some great options as well.

gregs1020 09-10-2008 03:57 PM

A bud of mine walked into the local pub last night with a 1973 JMP 50 watt head. It was mod'd with a master volume on the back panel. He has had it since he was 18, paid $400 for it 24 years ago. I absolutely hate him. (JK - or I would have rolled him when we left). That had some serious mojo. I tried to trade my 63 vibroverb reissue for it, he laughed, I did as well but it was worth a shot.

riffhog 09-10-2008 04:05 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by DerekTheDominoe
Ok, I'll guess we'll have to wait for questions.

But, to start the thread off, I'd like to ask:

What are the best Marshall clones for the money? I know about Metro and Ceriatone, but would there be any other companies that do em as good or better?


Blockhead & Roccaforte make some brilliant Marshall clones, & Mojave Amp Works makes the best Marshall tones I've ever heard that didn't come from a vintage Marshall. Also, Blankenship Amps makes a Marshall clone w/ a built-in Variac!

DerekTheDominoe 09-10-2008 04:48 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by al112987
I was looking at Marshall clones for about a year while searching for my last amp and basically came to the conclusion that the best is Metropoulos, there are modded versions of the original Marshall circuits that are hand built and use top quality components but Metropoulos makes the best clones in terms of historical accuracy. George has a bunch of old vintage Marshalls that he uses for reference, has his transformers custom built for him, and he, along with the rest of the guys at Metro are all just great and helpful people in general.

And I mean seriously. Tell me these don't sound just incredible.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iFzm...feature=related (JTM45 with 2x12 Celestion alnico golds)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tSmV...feature=related (JTM45 with 4x12 Celestion alnico blues)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9_ae...feature=related (1968 spec 100 watt SLP)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ltD2...feature=related (1966 spec 100 watt JTM45/100)

Other good builders that I've heard about are...

Greg Germino's amps

http://www.germinoamps.com/amplifiers.htm

Louis Electric makes a hell of a Bluesbreaker/JTM45 as well (check out that "Hideaway" clip!)

http://www.louisamps.com/content/BLUESBREAKER.asp

and...

Soultone

Reinhardt
(these are clips of the Sentinel, JTM45 w/ solid state rectifier option)



Make classic Marshall amps with some great options as well.


Thank you so much. I was gonna buy a Marshall BB, but for the same price, I can get a Metro one with Greenbacks. You've helped alot.

Also, I'll add more stuff to my first post!

al112987 09-10-2008 04:53 PM

To be honest with you, I'm not so sure about greenbacks with the Bluesbreaker even though I know that they're supposedly what Clapton used for his "Beano" tone. (Who knows what he was really running during those sessions, some claim he was using alnicos)

I've always heard the g12h-30s were better suited with the Bluesbreaker/JTM45 circuit, and that the greenbacks were just not tight enough in the bass to handle the low end of the JTM45 without farting out at high volumes. I don't know if thats true or not, I've never played Greenbacks in the JTM45. Greg Germino's clips of the JTM45 (Classic 45) are played with heritage greenbacks and it sounds amazing.

But I guess if you're after the "Bluesbreaker" Clapton tone, you may want the warm mids of the 25 watt greenback. Otherwise, I'd look for the g12h-30, the heavier magnet will handle the bass a lot better, and is better for Hendrix or Angus tone. If you've never played a JTM45 before, you'll understand what I mean, I run my bass on zero, bridge the channels, turn the bright channel to about 7-8 and dial in low end by using the channel II (normal) volume (probably keep that at about 2-3).

DerekTheDominoe 09-10-2008 05:15 PM

Clapton used 20 watt alnico greenback speakers in his amp. The new greenbacks don't use alnico magnets, so they sound smoother and a bit "mushy". A 20 watt speaker would be damaged after being pushed for too long anyway.

I'll email George about it, because they don't that BB in the video.

PS: I'm not after Clapton's BB tone, I'm after something smoother and less overdriven.

al112987 09-10-2008 05:22 PM

The new Greenbacks that George puts into the bluesbreaker are new 25 watt reissues and the JTM45 puts out about 50 watts when you're diming it. It SHOULD technically be ok... though some of the guys over at the Metro boards say that they've heard of smoking speakers with the JTM45.

That video uses Celestion alnico golds, they're 50 watts a piece, similarly voiced to the original alnico blues, but with higher power handling.

theo_siordia 09-10-2008 05:39 PM

Man, please let me post an amp that was made in 1986:(

DerekTheDominoe 09-10-2008 08:03 PM

Yeah, I changed the rules. Post it!

theo_siordia 09-10-2008 09:56 PM

Thanks TS!!!:D

Well, I'm the proud owner of a Marshall Artist Series 4203 Tube Amp, not all-tube, it has preamp transistors and tube power amp and rectifier. It's 30 Watt of class A wiring, so it's LOUD, anyone else owns one of these???, I found it used and I loved it, was about $350, was it a good price??? Its in great condition. Has a Celestion Vintage 30 in it:D, only con is you need a footswitvh to change between OD an clean chanels.

end_citizen 09-10-2008 10:12 PM

There is a great shop in the city that I work. That have walls of vintage amps. Mostly old fenders, a few ancient tube Danelectros and Silvertones. Last time I was there they had an original Vox AC-30. I was too afraid how much he wanted for it after he told the price for some 80s Mesa MKIII. Nice stuff, but outside of my price range. I did buy a '68 silvertone off the guy when I was young(er) and dumb(er).

Iceman 420 09-10-2008 10:22 PM

I just wanted to alert people about www.allenamps.com

timzee117 09-10-2008 10:30 PM

im just curious how a splawn super stock compares to a vintage jcm 2203 and vintage plexi

anyone care to enlighten me?

acdcrocks0323 09-10-2008 10:33 PM

Would pics of a Blackface Super Reverb help this thread?

DerekTheDominoe 09-10-2008 10:49 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by acdcrocks0323
Would pics of a Blackface Super Reverb help this thread?

You have one? Post away, you lucky dog :) !

DerekTheDominoe 09-10-2008 10:52 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by timzee117
im just curious how a splawn super stock compares to a vintage jcm 2203 and vintage plexi

anyone care to enlighten me?



Well, Splawns are like Plexis on steroids. They have features like more gain, solo boosts and a master volume.
They sound do things normal plexis have trouble doing, like hard rock and metal.
I've never played one, but I'll give you examples:

Splawn Quickrod vs Nitro

splawn nitro

Splawn website


Now, for your answer!

Well, a super stock is a vintage voiced amp. It's probably their amp that is the most similar to a plexi.
A vintage JCM 800 will give you those high gain and crunch tones, but the Super Stock will give you mostly classic rock crunch.

Super Stock: Less gain, more about cleans and crunch
JCM 800: High gain
What music do you play?


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