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Old 09-08-2012, 07:54 AM   #1
MetalFriend
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New Amp Head?

I recently acquired a Carvin V3M head a couple of months ago but, I'm not satisfied with it's gain channel, unfortunately. It just doesn't have enough gain on tap to play some of the heavier riffs I want to play. I'm going to trade it in for something else soon but I'd like a general idea of what would be good for me.

Budget- 600-800

Genres- Alternative Metal, Progressive Metal. Guitarists- Adam Jones (Tool), John Petrucci. I'd like the amp to have decent cleans as well.

New or Used- Preferably Used if I can get a good deal out of it.

Home or Gig- Gig

City- Sacramento

Gear- Ibanez and Sterling Music Man guitars.

Been looking at Blackstar and the Line 6 Valve Amps.

Suggestions? Thanks!!!!
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Old 09-08-2012, 08:06 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MetalFriend
I recently acquired a Carvin V3M head a couple of months ago but, I'm not satisfied with it's gain channel, unfortunately. It just doesn't have enough gain on tap to play some of the heavier riffs I want to play. I'm going to trade it in for something else soon but I'd like a general idea of what would be good for me.
Are you deaf?

The Carvin V3m has more than enough gain than anyone should ever need. Either something's wrong with it, or you need to learn how to play guitar correctly without masking your mistakes with loads of distortion.
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Old 09-08-2012, 08:17 AM   #3
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I'm sorry...
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It's not so much that the Schecter's neck is ''fat'', it's that the Ibanez neck is anorexic.


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Old 09-08-2012, 08:24 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ian_the_fox
Are you deaf?

The Carvin V3m has more than enough gain than anyone should ever need. Either something's wrong with it, or you need to learn how to play guitar correctly without masking your mistakes with loads of distortion.

Don't be a jerk.

TS, did you buy it new or used? If you're having an issue with the gain you might have some bung valves if it's never had a re-valve or a service. From what I'm hearing the V3 has loads of gain so I'd check that out. Also a cheaper and simpler solution would be a boost if you're finding it really doesn't have enough gain and you're happy with the actual sound of it. Though if you find you really need a new amp, then I'll chuck along some suggestions.
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Old 09-08-2012, 08:38 AM   #5
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Hey, will make a few suggestions myself.

If it's 50 watts and you're not getting a heavy enough sound, there's obviously something wrong. First and foremost, it might just be a faulty amp or it might have dead tubes; get that checked first.

The second most common problem is that it isn't EQ'd properly - you need to have a good EQ setting for your amp to properly deliver its distortion. If you're not familiar with EQ, try the classic scooped settings (Bass past half, mids dropped, treble past half; thus giving it the 'scooped' name) with a generous amount of gain.

Another big factor is your cabinet speaker. No matter how good your head is, it will indeed sound horrible through bad speakers. If it turns out you have poor-quality speakers, replace those instead of the head.

Tube screamer may also be a possible solution for you. In a nutshell, the tube screamer is a pedal that boosts your output with some overdrive. This allows you to get 'more' from your amp even with lower gain settings. Or you could just get active electronics for your guitar.

Finally, it might just be your technique (I'm in no way judging your playing, I've never heard or seen you play before) that's making it sound the way it is. With accurate playing and good time, you really don't need too much gain; just mentioning a possibility.

IF YOU REALLY INSIST ON GETTING A NEW HEAD, I would strongly recommend some lower wattage heads from Mesa Boogie. The mini-rectifier or some of their newer products will no doubt have enough gain to fill your gain hunger. Blackstar amps are also top of the line, but I would go for the Mesa Boogies if circumstances allow it.

Hope this helps dude!
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Old 09-08-2012, 08:39 AM   #6
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Oh, or just get a nice combo amp.
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Old 09-08-2012, 08:40 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shornifier
If it's 50 watts and you're not getting a heavy enough sound, there's obviously something wrong. First and foremost, it might just be a faulty amp or it might have dead tubes; get that checked first.

The second most common problem is that it isn't EQ'd properly - you need to have a good EQ setting for your amp to properly deliver its distortion. If you're not familiar with EQ, try the classic scooped settings (Bass past half, mids dropped, treble past half; thus giving it the 'scooped' name) with a generous amount of gain.

I agree with everything except these two.

Wattage has nothing to do with getting a 'heavy' sound. EQ also has nothing to do with getting the amount of distortion.
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That's the advantage of being such a distance from Yianni. I can continue to live my life without fear of stumbling upon his dark terror.


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Old 09-08-2012, 08:46 AM   #8
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Thanks guys. I'll try to work with my eq a little bit more when the rest of my house wakes up. I read up on it a bit and apparently it's really sensitive and a bit weird to work with. My speakers are Celestions in a Laney cab so I don't think that's it. It is the stock tubes that it came with so I might replace those soon. I don't think they're actually faulty but, I've been told putting some nice tubes makes the amp sound smoother.
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It's not so much that the Schecter's neck is ''fat'', it's that the Ibanez neck is anorexic.


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Old 09-08-2012, 08:49 AM   #9
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I don't know what tubes they stock the V3's with, but I'd imagine they're garbage. Order some JJ's and chuck those in. Also what Laney cab is it? They might be Celestion speakers, but Celestion make some pretty crap speakers alongside their good speakers.
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That's the advantage of being such a distance from Yianni. I can continue to live my life without fear of stumbling upon his dark terror.


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Old 09-08-2012, 08:51 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MetalFriend
Thanks guys. I'll try to work with my eq a little bit more when the rest of my house wakes up. I read up on it a bit and apparently it's really sensitive and a bit weird to work with. My speakers are Celestions in a Laney cab so I don't think that's it. It is the stock tubes that it came with so I might replace those soon. I don't think they're actually faulty but, I've been told putting some nice tubes makes the amp sound smoother.

What laney cab is it, because not all Celestions are good. Carvin normaly pairs the V3 with V30's or their own custom Carvin speakers.

If your cab has Celeston 70-80's that can be a the problem.

Like has been said the V3 has plenty of gain, but I find it to be a very fizzy type of gain
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Old 09-08-2012, 08:58 AM   #11
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I bought the cab used and it doesn't have any model no. on it. However, I opened up the back of the cab before buying and it had Celestion G12H 30's in it.
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Old 09-08-2012, 08:59 AM   #12
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Yeah, I thought it was fizzy too. I was looking for a more smooth high gain.
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It's not so much that the Schecter's neck is ''fat'', it's that the Ibanez neck is anorexic.


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Old 09-08-2012, 09:05 AM   #13
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I wouldn't count out the V3 just yet. Do the easy things first like new tubes and maybe a new cab. Can you go anywhere to try out some cabs?
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That's the advantage of being such a distance from Yianni. I can continue to live my life without fear of stumbling upon his dark terror.


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Old 09-08-2012, 09:09 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MetalFriend
I bought the cab used and it doesn't have any model no. on it. However, I opened up the back of the cab before buying and it had Celestion G12H 30's in it.

Laneys pair great with the G12h30, but they are deff a more vintage tone.

If you don't like the fizzy-ness of your amp, you will probably like something like a Mesa Single rectifier or Peavey 5150. You can find them used easily in your budget. But I'm not sure how they will be with the G12h30's
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Old 09-08-2012, 09:10 AM   #15
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Those are pretty sweet speakers, though I'm not sure how well they would blend with that amp. If the mini is any thing like its big brother, it should have oodles and gobs of distortion. I play with mine around 1 or 2 o'clock on the dial. And I engage the boost for leads. I think it is quite possible that you think you need more than do, sometimes you hear the compression on a recording and you think that you need more gain, when in reality you are playing with plenty. I definitely used to play with more distortion when I was still new to playing, but as you go on a lot of the time people will realize that they are using more than they need to achieve certain sounds.

Now I don't know your experience level, but it is something to think about. It is still worth checking the preamp tubes as others mentioned, but beyond that there isn't a huge selection of amps with more distortion than a V3, so I don't know if you would be satisfied with another amp if that's all you were looking for

Edit: for a smoother tone, try turning down the mid cut a bit, play with the deep switch and presence knobs a lot. Because of the active EQ, this amp can be really finicky, but when you hit the sweet spot, it purrs
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Old 09-08-2012, 09:11 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by Eppicurt
I agree with everything except these two.

Wattage has nothing to do with getting a 'heavy' sound. EQ also has nothing to do with getting the amount of distortion.



Tube amps don't do so well with low volume and a bad EQ can seriously mess up the way you hear the distortion; not the amount.
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Old 09-08-2012, 09:19 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shornifier
Tube amps don't do so well with low volume and a bad EQ can seriously mess up the way you hear the distortion; not the amount.

That has nothing to do with wattage still...

He's complaining about not having enough gain, not that it doesn't sound right.
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Old 09-08-2012, 09:22 AM   #18
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The V3M is a bit of a tweaker's amp. +1 to the boost pedal suggestion. If that doesn't get the tone you're after maybe a swap of preamp tubes is in order? I'm not much of a tube conniseur but if you're looking to get rid of some of the fizz and get a smoother more fluid lead tone preamp tubes is probably the way to go. The V3M as stated has more than enough gain do to pretty much any style of metal IMO.

Mess with the EQ some more, try LESS GAIN and a bit more master volume (a lot of the time people perceive their lack lustre tone to be associated with gain levels which is more often than not untrue), get your mids up if you haven't already, and if all else fails then try an OD pedal. The simplest solutions are often the best.
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Old 09-08-2012, 09:27 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by Eppicurt
That has nothing to do with wattage still...

He's complaining about not having enough gain, not that it doesn't sound right.



No man you're not getting my point; the more power it has, the more volume it needs to actually give it its all.
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Old 09-08-2012, 09:31 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shornifier
No man you're not getting my point; the more power it has, the more volume it needs to actually give it its all.

Huh?
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