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Old 11-02-2013, 05:21 AM   #1
Izvire
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Tube amp for an apartment?

Looking for a small combo amp for an apartment, tube preferred.

Previous amps include AC30VR, which sucked, and a Marshall 100 watt head, which was great.

So basically I'm looking for a tube amp, which I could play at lower volumes, if possible.

I was looking at the Fender Hot Rod Deluxe III, which I could get for a pretty low price.

My budget is about 1000Ä, so keep that in mind.

Any suggestions?

Just bumped into an Orange TH30C, would that be good?

Last edited by Izvire : 11-08-2013 at 02:37 PM.
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Old 11-02-2013, 08:43 AM   #2
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Genres/bands you'll want to play? Current gear? Will need it for gigging as well? Prefer combo or head + cab?


All I can say about the TH30 is it'll be damn loud, from what I've heard others say.
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Old 11-02-2013, 09:04 AM   #3
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I live in an apartment and have tried the low wattage tube combo thing. I bought a Peavey Windsor Studio and it even has a power attenuator built in. I really don't like it stock but if you mod it, it will do a decent plexi type gain. I still find it doesn't work well 90% of the time.

I ended up getting a used Line 6 POD XT and a decent set of headphones. This is the best apartment setup I have found yet
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Old 11-02-2013, 10:15 AM   #4
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Current gear consists of a Gibson Les Paul Studio with Slash pickups. A few pedals, and that's about it.

I thought about going the headphone way but not really my thing.

Really thinking about going for TH30 + 1x12" Orange cab. Could be a bit loud but at 7 watt shouldn't be too bad. Not going to use it for gigging. Pretty much the only genre I will play is rock.
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Old 11-02-2013, 10:23 AM   #5
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I cannot speak on the combo but the head is f-ing loud. The clean channel is the louder of the two, and breaks up nicely. I rarely put my amp on the 30w setting. I live in a house and I can get the amp to sound good on the 15w setting but it is still really loud. I would not look to buy an expensive amp to just use the 7w setting. Like Robb said the line 6 with a good set of headphones might be the best way to go. I probably wouldn't own the TH if I lived in an apartment.
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Old 11-02-2013, 10:40 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bobafettacheese
I cannot speak on the combo but the head is f-ing loud. The clean channel is the louder of the two, and breaks up nicely. I rarely put my amp on the 30w setting. I live in a house and I can get the amp to sound good on the 15w setting but it is still really loud. I would not look to buy an expensive amp to just use the 7w setting. Like Robb said the line 6 with a good set of headphones might be the best way to go. I probably wouldn't own the TH if I lived in an apartment.


Just sold my AC30VR which was about the right volume level, but then of course it isn't a tube amp..

Really wouldn't want to go the POD way to be honest. It doesn't have to be quiet, since I'll only be playing by day and I feel that it wouldn't get so loud that it would bother anyone.
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Old 11-02-2013, 10:48 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Izvire
Could be a bit loud but at 7 watt shouldn't be too bad.

Obviously all amps are different, but I used to have the Vox AC4 stack. On the 4w setting I still had to keep the volume down to avoid upsetting the neighbours. 1w was OK during the day, but in the evenings they could even hear me if I cranked the 1/4w setting.

And that's in a semi-detached house, not an apartment.

Headphones may not be your thing, but if you have neighbours/family to consider they may be the best route forward.
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Old 11-02-2013, 11:06 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Izvire
Pretty much the only genre I will play is rock.


This doesn't mean anything to us. Some people consider Journey rock, other people consider All That Remains rock.

Please tell us exactly which bands/albums/songs have a tone you'd like to get close to.
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Old 11-02-2013, 02:47 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Offworld92
This doesn't mean anything to us. Some people consider Journey rock, other people consider All That Remains rock.

Please tell us exactly which bands/albums/songs have a tone you'd like to get close to.


He DID mention the Slash pickups
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Old 11-02-2013, 03:24 PM   #10
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A few things I like: Slash, Led Zeppelin, Foo Fighters, all Tom Morello stuff, Pearl Jam and Red Hot Chili Peppers to get some reference. Old and new stuff. Classics.
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Old 11-02-2013, 04:56 PM   #11
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Like Gary was saying 7w can still be crazy loud. I still think for apartment use the POD and good headphones is the way to go. If you are set on a tube amp I'll recommend the Marshall DSL 401.
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Old 11-02-2013, 05:03 PM   #12
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Honestly, while not tube the best amp I've found for bedroom playing is the Diago Little Smasher, thing is really awesome.
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Old 11-02-2013, 05:13 PM   #13
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I think with whatever you get, an attenuator is going to be necessary. You'd be surprised just how loud a low wattage tube amp can be. And at low volume, you're not going to get much tone out of it.
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Old 11-02-2013, 05:20 PM   #14
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Like Gary mentioned, I also owned the AC4TV mini stack.

Even at 1/4, that thing was still pretty loud. Probably too loud for an apartment.

Do you play in a band, or can you see yourself gigging in the future?

Like others have said, you're probably better off going with something like a small SS, or POD or something similar for when you practice at home, and then pickup a nice combo for band practice.

If you're not going to be gigging, I'd recommend a rack processor like the eleven rack or something similar. That way you can throw on some headphones, get some good tones, and not piss anyone off

Edit: I see that you're not gigging. I know that you want a real amp, but you have to ask yourself "is it realistic". Given that you're living in a small apartment, I'd say no. I don't see any point in paying that much for an Orange or Marshall, or whatever, when you realistically wont be able to take it past .5. You could pick up an attenuator, but I don't think that would make a huge difference, given your space.

Edit #2: Another option, not quite so economical, would be to pick up whatever head you want, get and isolation box, stick a mic in there, then use a set of headphones through a USB interface. Basically you would have a home recording set up that you would practice through. Could be a good idea if you're interested in doing some recording, but by the time you factor in the cost of a iso box, mic, and interface (assuming you dont already own any) you would be left with a pretty small budget for a head.
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Old 11-02-2013, 05:21 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Izvire
A few things I like: Slash, Led Zeppelin, Foo Fighters, all Tom Morello stuff, Pearl Jam and Red Hot Chili Peppers to get some reference. Old and new stuff. Classics.


I also recommend a Marshall DSL401 for that stuff.
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Old 11-02-2013, 05:46 PM   #16
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I can't hardly believe neighbors could here the 1/4 watt during the day ??...... I have AC4TV and it doesn't sound much louder than the TV , maybe we keep our TV too loud ? ..... I could see it being loud at night but not by day ....... I guess I'm lucky to have a house and forgot about apartment life and neighbors close by
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Old 11-02-2013, 06:08 PM   #17
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^ That's why I said my neighbours could hear it on the 1/4 setting when I played in the evening

Actually they could probably hear it any time, they just don't mind during the day - my neighbours are OK with me being a bit loud in the afternoon at weekends, they know I keep the noise down at night.
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Old 11-02-2013, 08:34 PM   #18
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From the bands you listed/being and appartment dweller, it sounds like an Egnater Rebel 20/30 or a Tweaker 15 would be right up your alley. But honestly, any amp with a good range of tone controls (presence and/or resonance, plus the regular T/M/B) can get great sounds at low volumes. The biggest thing I you lose with low volumes is treble and definition. Having a decent eq to work with can get those back. If the amp only has the standard T/M/B layout, but it has an effects loop, stick an eq in there.

Just get something that makes noise you enjoy that in your price range.
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Old 11-03-2013, 12:18 AM   #19
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Tube preamp with speaker simulation to monitors is the way to go. I spent years trying different small tube amps that claimed to be apartment friendly and they all sucked. Sure, technically you can use them at TV volume. But thatís not what makes them sound good, so why waste money on another amp when you can just get useful gear and a set of nice speaker?
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Old 11-03-2013, 12:44 AM   #20
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Mesa Rectoverb sounds great at low volume and even better at high volume.
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