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Old 02-01-2013, 06:00 PM   #1
WhatAStoryMark
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New Amp!

Hey everyone,

I'm a new member at UG (although I've been using it for a long time) as a friend said that you offered very useful advice to him when he was looking to buy new gear a couple of months ago and now I find myself in a similar situation.

I live in the UK, just south of Bristol, and I'm looking to buy a new amp, my budget would be somewhere between 400 and 600 pounds, and, obviously, it's better the closer I can get it to the 400 mark.

Budget? 400-600.

Genres? Alternative, some rock (mostly very mild stuff) and blues. Favourite guitarists would be Jeff Buckley, Jeff Beck and Matt Schofield. The most important thing would be a good clean channel really.

New or Used? I'd prefer new but used would be fine if there is a great offer on.

Home or Gig? Emphatically only for home use currently (I've only just started trying to take it seriously after 3 or 4 years of noodling around)

Closest City? Bristol.

Current Gear? MIM Tele and a Laney amp of some description I currently am unable to access, but even I can tell it's a terrible, terrible amp.

Thanks in advance.

Last edited by WhatAStoryMark : 02-01-2013 at 06:05 PM.
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Old 02-01-2013, 07:18 PM   #2
Remnest
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A Vox AC15 or a Fender Blues Deluxe or Hotrod may be up your alley i think.
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Old 02-01-2013, 07:25 PM   #3
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thomann sells the traynor ycv50b for around 450 or so (though the exchange rate has gone to crap over the past 10 days or so, it was 80p to a euro about that long ago, today it's 87p ). it's hard to beat for the money, plywood cabinet, made in canada, good vintage 30 stock speaker. whether it's too rock for you is the thing. Don't get me wrong, it's not a metal amp or anything like that (it's not heavy enough for what most people want round here ) but i'd say it's more or less a straight ahead rock amp.

I've only tried the 40 watt version, which has a worse speaker and 6L6 power tubes instead of the 50's EL34s (which probably make it a little more "british" and "rock"-sounding), but i thought that the 40 was a bit like a fender hot rod deluxe with a better overdrive channel. WHich is a good thing IMO, since the HRD's cleans are very nice for the price point, but the od channel sucks ass

for what you want a fender hot rod or blues deluxe may well be worth checking out, though. I think the traynor is the better amp, just the fenders may suit you more (though i doubt you'd go too far wrong with the traynor, either).

a laney vc30 might be worth a try too, but it's unlikely to be much more suitable than the traynor and is no cheaper (and arguably not as good value... arguably the traynor is the better amp).
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Old 02-01-2013, 08:00 PM   #4
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Do you know what model the laney is? they're generally considered pretty good amps
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Old 02-01-2013, 09:23 PM   #5
WhatAStoryMark
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To Dave, is the Traynor flexible? Because if so that sounds like a great shout and I'll definitely look into it. I will of course also look at the Fenders.

To Remnest, how good are the cleans on a Vox? I've heard a couple of people say different things.

And to Hellraiser, I unfortunately am away from my home at the moment so I can't tell you, it's a solid state practice amp though which I inherited from my father when I started playing. It's really not great.

Thanks for your prompt replies.
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Old 02-02-2013, 11:13 AM   #6
WhatAStoryMark
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Oh, and another question, how much worse are solid state amps? Because they are quite a lot cheaper and surely I could buy a 'better' amp for the same money?

Of course, I've always heard that all tube amps are better but mostly that's from my father or my friend, neither of whom I'm always confident in. So if you could offer some advice on which I should get in my specific situation that would be a great help.
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Old 02-02-2013, 11:13 AM   #7
daverichards
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After owning(still own) a Laney VC30, Vox Ac30/15 & Fender Blues Junior, they will all do the tone you're after..

You'd get the best deal on the Laney VC15/30 (theyre kinda like the Vox Ac series), definitely worth a look at in my opinion
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Old 02-02-2013, 11:20 AM   #8
Volcz
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Depends on the clean your after. Vox's are known to have very, very good cleans. Their fame is partially from it's cleans/

Very chimey, bright and sweet. British toned amp.
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Old 02-02-2013, 11:27 AM   #9
WhatAStoryMark
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Thanks, great response, although I can't say that I'll necessarily go entirely on the basis of someone whose name is 'The Vox Man' .

Dave as well, thanks a lot, I will definitely also look into the Laney.

This was definitely a success, I may be back in a couple of weeks/ a month, I'm going to need to get a couple of pedals and this has been very helpful.
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Old 02-02-2013, 12:27 PM   #10
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A Vox AC15 is worth checking out. They are a bit of a brighter, chimey, jangly amp. Jeff Beck has used (I think still using) AC30s, and although they are a bit different from an AC15, they are in that sort of ballpark. I second the Traynor suggestions. The Peavey Classic 30 might be a good one too. I don't know how the prices on them over there are, but they sound pretty decent for the price.
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Old 02-02-2013, 01:07 PM   #11
Dave_Mc
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WhatAStoryMark
To Dave, is the Traynor flexible? Because if so that sounds like a great shout and I'll definitely look into it. I will of course also look at the Fenders.


yeah i think so. i assume you mean "versatile"? it should be as long as you don't need modern metal tones, yeah.

and yeah vox cleans are nice but they're not fender cleans either. people who prefer voxy cleans will tell you vox cleans are better and people who prefer fender cleans will tell you fender cleans are better. it just depends on which you prefer.

and yeah, while in principle solid state is not really inherently inferior to valve... in practice most of the time it is.
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Old 02-02-2013, 02:54 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by Dave_Mc
yeah i think so. i assume you mean "versatile"? it should be as long as you don't need modern metal tones, yeah.


That's exactly what I meant.

And a final point to anyone who is still with me (and thanks if you are) is on reverb. From what I understand having used Thomann and various other similar sites all of these amps have reverb, however, are they normally good? I understand that most of you won't have played all of these amps but any input is useful.
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Old 02-02-2013, 04:24 PM   #13
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depends on the amp, really. good-sounding spring reverb sounds awesome (assuming you like it, lol). the spring reverb on my genz benz black pearl is... horrible, lol (and it's valve-driven to boot, just goes to show you can't go by the specs all the time). the one on my engl (before it broke ) was very nice. It just depends on the amp, really. From what i can remember, the spring reverb on the traynor was good (or at least, i didn't notice anything particularly wrong with it), but I really can't remember much about it

the reverb on the ac30cc was really nice indeed. I haven't tried the newer ac30c2 so I dunno what it's like. the reverb on the fenders should be pretty good, i think. I don't remember much about the reverb on either the classic 30 or laney vc15 or 30 but again that probably means there wasn't anything particularly wrong with it (though by the same token it probably didn't blow me away either).

EDIT: i wouldn't worry too much about the reverb, in other words. I assume the reverb on all the ones you're looking at is decent, and even if it's not, you can just turn it off and run a pedal. it's not really a deal-brekaer... unless you had two amps you liked equally, and then maybe it might be, if you use reverb a lot. But in the real world very rarely do you have two amps you like equally, normally one amp is clearly better for what you want.
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Last edited by Dave_Mc : 02-02-2013 at 04:26 PM.
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Old 02-02-2013, 05:05 PM   #14
WhatAStoryMark
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Thanks, Dave, you've been really helpful.

Hopefully I'll post back here in a couple of days/ a week with the results.
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Old 02-02-2013, 05:19 PM   #15
Volcz
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Hahahah don't worry, as much as I love Vox amps I'm not bias towards them! They just nail my tone
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Old 02-02-2013, 09:14 PM   #16
WhatAStoryMark
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Oh, and a final question, I've been looking at the Peavey 6505 and it looks like it has good specs. Is there a particular reason that none of you recommended it?
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Old 02-02-2013, 09:49 PM   #17
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It has terrible cleans.
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Old 02-02-2013, 09:56 PM   #18
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it is the epitome of metal amps and has a bad clean channel.
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Old 02-02-2013, 10:56 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by ihartfood
it is the epitome of metal amps and has a bad clean channel.


It has a useable clean channel. However, if you want a great clean channel, it should be the last option you look at.

Just to add on to the comments about Vox. Those aren't just known for their clean channels, their overdrive channel is pretty sweet as well. A lot of people get Vox amps for their voicing, you should give them a try to see if they have a tone you are seeking. The chime on a Vox amp is very unique, and rarely replicated on any other amp.

On the matter of reverb, many amps come with built in reverb... some are digital, some are spring. However, given that many amps have a FX loop, and that you can easily get awesome reverb pedals at just over a hundred dollars these days, a reverb should be a secondary consideration.

Get the amp that gives you a tone you love, because your amp will contribute significantly to your tone. Modulation can be considered later.

I use a Mesa MkV, but I find the built-in spring reverb too subtle for my liking, so I use an Eventide reverb to give me the sounds I want.
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Old 02-03-2013, 02:13 AM   #20
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The AC30 and AC15's spring reverb IMO is as good, if not better than a Deluxe Reverb.
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