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Old 01-19-2015, 05:45 AM   #1
suhaibullah
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What to upgrade,amp or guitar?

Recently I decided to upgrade my equipment(Peavey Blazer 128 40 watt amp),(Jay Turser replica Les Paul).I was thinking to upgrade my guitar because of the bad action of the neck and buzzing I also have a distortion pedal and I thought I would get a heavier tone.But then a friend told me to get an amp instead as it would make a bigger difference,and as I play mostly Metallica and occasionally Megadeth get EMGS with the amp.But what's a good amp that would match with emgs and give a good Metal tone?.I was thinking to get a Blackstar ht100t with a 2x12cab OR a Line 6 spider 4.
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Old 01-19-2015, 07:18 AM   #2
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a marshall
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Old 01-19-2015, 08:21 AM   #3
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Don't get a Line 6 Spider, whatever you do.
Do you want a new guitar? Or are you asking whether you should put EMGs in your Jay Turser?
If I were you, I'd uprgrade your whole guitar, putting EMGs in your LP copy will sound terrible through your amp. That being said you'll definitely want to upgrade your amp.

There's a massive difference between the Blackstar and the Line 6. The Blackstar is a 100 watt tube head and the Line 6 is SS and, according to most people around here, garbage.

What's your budget? current gear? preferences?
Also, please read this: http://www.ultimate-guitar.com/foru...d.php?t=1497696
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Old 01-19-2015, 11:01 AM   #4
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I'd upgrade the amp, and use the spare cash to upgrade your guitar, I have a Vintage V100 Les Paul which I put EMGs in and properly set up and it plays nicer than every epiphone I've played, and brand new it was only 180
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Old 01-19-2015, 11:10 AM   #5
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Jet City makes affordable combos in 50 and 100 watts. They're essentially the Squier of Soldano, but they get fantastic reviews and are really affordable.

Blackstar makes great amps for someone who needs a lot of gain at low volumes, but still wants tubes so they can crank it out at shows. Everyone in GG&A hates them because they're false advertising (which isn't untrue, but I feel like they discount the whole amp as a result). The front end of the amp isn't entirely tube, because of the ISF stuff. However, the HT series is really solid for the reasons I mentioned. The cleans are okay, but the gain is very Marshall-esque.

I used to think Blackstar was iffy only because of UG, and then the shop I worked at started carrying them, and it changed my mind. I'm a pretty big believer in their applications. You can't just be one of those "oh my god it's not all tubes!" blues lawyers, which you definitely don't sound like.
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Old 01-19-2015, 11:56 AM   #6
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My budget is 1500$ and what I'm thinking to do is get a blackstar ht50 and zakk wylde emgs to upgrade my guitar.What do you guys think and what would you guys say about line 6 spider 4 jam 75watt.Also explain to me the difference in using emgs with a tube vs ss
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Old 01-19-2015, 12:41 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JustRooster
Blackstar makes great amps for someone who needs a lot of gain at low volumes, but still wants tubes so they can crank it out at shows. Everyone in GG&A hates them because they're false advertising (which isn't untrue, but I feel like they discount the whole amp as a result). The front end of the amp isn't entirely tube, because of the ISF stuff. However, the HT series is really solid for the reasons I mentioned. The cleans are okay, but the gain is very Marshall-esque.

I used to think Blackstar was iffy only because of UG, and then the shop I worked at started carrying them, and it changed my mind. I'm a pretty big believer in their applications. You can't just be one of those "oh my god it's not all tubes!" blues lawyers, which you definitely don't sound like.


A fair amount of the power amp isn't all-tube either (if you consider the PI to be in the power amp).

But I've said before, it's maybe not worth biting off your nose to spite your face if you like them.

As I've said before, I haven't tried the HT, but I tried the artisan (which is all-tube) and I wasn't much fussed. I think that's before I knew about the shenanigans too, but I could be misremembering.
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Old 01-19-2015, 12:53 PM   #8
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Upgrade the amp. Either get the Blackstar, or try out some Jet City amps. With that budget, maybe check out some Peavys. The 5150 is really popular with the high gain crowd, and a used one will be well within that budget.
Play your new amp, then decide if you really need the EMGs or not. Putting the EMGs in the guitar won't instantly give you the "Master of Puppets" distortion tone.
If your having neck issues and buzzing with the guitar, try a setup.

You may initially like the Spider 4 amp, but you will slowly get tired of the tone. Don't waste your money on that one.
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Old 01-19-2015, 01:01 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Dave_Mc
A fair amount of the power amp isn't all-tube either (if you consider the PI to be in the power amp).

But I've said before, it's maybe not worth biting off your nose to spite your face if you like them.

As I've said before, I haven't tried the HT, but I tried the artisan (which is all-tube) and I wasn't much fussed. I think that's before I knew about the shenanigans too, but I could be misremembering.

I have an HT Soloist 60. Tried it out mainly against a DSL40, and(for me, anyway), there was no contest. The Blackstar sounded better from the start(everything except volumes at 12 o'clock), and fine-tuning the sound wasn't the struggle it was with the Marshall.

Like everything else, try if you can TS, and make up your own mind.
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Old 01-19-2015, 01:12 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by suhaibullah
Recently I decided to upgrade my equipment(Peavey Blazer 128 40 watt amp),(Jay Turser replica Les Paul).I was thinking to upgrade my guitar because of the bad action of the neck and buzzing I also have a distortion pedal and I thought I would get a heavier tone.But then a friend told me to get an amp instead as it would make a bigger difference,and as I play mostly Metallica and occasionally Megadeth get EMGS with the amp.But what's a good amp that would match with emgs and give a good Metal tone?.I was thinking to get a Blackstar ht100t with a 2x12cab OR a Line 6 spider 4.


Quite the conundrum. Bad action and neck buzzing on the guitar can probably be fixed by a tech. Start with that because it will make your decision easier.

If you're guitar simply can't be salvaged by a proper setup - then get a new guitar. There's no point in playing a guitar with bad action and buzzing - eliminating that should be your first priority.

If you're guitar can be salvaged and isn't a lemon - then get a new amp. In this scenario - do not get the Line 6 Spider - get the Blackstar or another metal tube amp.
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Old 01-19-2015, 01:46 PM   #11
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I don't really think the action is gonna be fixed not a major problem because I got the guitar for 170$ 3 years ago the same price I got the wah pedal last year.Anyways why won't I get the Master of puppets tone with emgs through a blackstar? basically I need James's live tone and something that sounds clearer and sharper whenever I play Holy wars, also want a good shredding tone.There that's almost the perfect sound I'm looking for.
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Old 01-19-2015, 02:27 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by suhaibullah
I don't really think the action is gonna be fixed not a major problem because I got the guitar for 170$ 3 years ago the same price I got the wah pedal last year.Anyways why won't I get the Master of puppets tone with emgs through a blackstar? basically I need James's live tone and something that sounds clearer and sharper whenever I play Holy wars, also want a good shredding tone.There that's almost the perfect sound I'm looking for.


I didn't mean anything by that. There's a lot of people who believe that a new "aggressive" pickup means instant brutal distortion. Remember, he's using thousands of dollars worth of amps on stage.
A quick Google search turned this up:
Amplifiers
Like a lot of artists we'll look at on Signature Tones, Hetfield uses multiple amps in his live rig. The one constant is his clean sound, which comes from a Roland Jazz Chorus JC-120. His dirty sound varies by era. In the early days (Kill Em All and Ride the Lightning), he used Marshall 100W heads (typically modified SLP/JMP 1959s) boosted using either a Proco Rat or an Ibanez Tube Screamer pedal; however, Hetfield has mentioned in interviews that he was never completely happy with that sound and that he feels that distortion should come from the amp rather than pedals. In the classic era (Master of Puppets through Metallica), Hetfield used the preamp of a Mesa/Boogie Mk. IIC+ driving the power section of a Marshall 100W head. In the late '90s (Load through S&M), Hetfield used a mix of Mesa/Boogie Dual Rectifier Solo and Wizard Modern Classic heads in the studio and a Mesa/Boogie Triaxis/Strategy 400 rack system (which can do both Mk. IIC+ and Recto sounds) live. In the modern era (St. Anger and after), he uses a Diezel VH4 head in addition to his Mesa Triaxis system.


(Hetfield's current live rig could deliver over 1200W of audio power if all the backups were engaged! To put that in perspective, most of the bands I've played in had less audio power than that for their PA...)

You know, you've got a nice budget. Maybe look at used Mesa heads too. A dual rectifier may not be far out of your grasp.
I switched to passives a while ago, myself. But as EMG goes, the Wylde set is nice, but James used to use an EMG 81/60 combo. He has the Het Set now, maybe look at that too.
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Old 01-19-2015, 03:08 PM   #13
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With that budget, $1500, you can go VERY far. You can buy a guitar AND an amp AND an OD pedal to boost the amp.

http://www.musiciansfriend.com/ampl...uitar-combo-amp

http://www.musiciansfriend.com/guit...electric-guitar

http://www.musiciansfriend.com/guit...c-guitar/516629

http://www.musiciansfriend.com/ampl...r-effects-pedal





Better than that, you'd be hard pressed to find. Good Luck!
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Old 01-19-2015, 05:28 PM   #14
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Definitely the amp.
Good guitar+shit amp=Shit sound
Good amp+shit guitar=decent sound
Shit amp+shit guitar=Grade A shit sound
Good amp+good guitar=Grade A good sound

Mesa Mark V or a Randall RM. Combo or Head+cab, your choice.
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Old 01-20-2015, 01:57 AM   #15
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What exactly would an od pedal do and what does boosting the amp mean? Other than that I'm not going to order stuff online as I am already gonna travel to Dubai to get the stuff and 1500 is like almost all of my savings from college,so I have to play and know,I'd have to stick with a crappy amplifier for 5 years If I don't like it after ordering it online(there are less instruments and amps here in Pakistan)which I won't be able to trade.And so I trust my ears but I've heard alot of complains of both the blackstar and the line 6 even though both of them have a crap load of features.That's what I'm curious about.

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Old 01-20-2015, 08:08 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by suhaibullah
What exactly would an od pedal do and what does boosting the amp mean? Other than that I'm not going to order stuff online as I am already gonna travel to Dubai to get the stuff and 1500 is like almost all of my savings from college,so I have to play and know,I'd have to stick with a crappy amplifier for 5 years If I don't like it after ordering it online(there are less instruments and amps here in Pakistan)which I won't be able to trade.And so I trust my ears but I've heard alot of complains of both the blackstar and the line 6 even though both of them have a crap load of features.That's what I'm curious about.

Boosting the amp with an overdrive pedal means just pushing it a bit further. Giving it a bit more gain whilst still keeping things nice.
An od pedal(overdrive) makes that boosting possible.
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Old 01-20-2015, 08:37 AM   #17
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Upgrading the amp would definitely give you a better sound, but what good would that do you if your guitar isnt fun to play. So i suggest you upgrade both since your budget if fairly good. A used Peavey 6505 could be found at around 600-700 on ebay or craigslist sometimes even cheaper. thats a close Metallica sound. The blackstar ht100/60/50/40 (dont know why the hell they have so many versions of the same amp -_-) has always sounded more like a hard rock amp to me, but its got a way better clean tone than the 6505 and decent amount of gain. Either is better than a spider 4.

you will have enough money left over for a good guitar. EMGs/passive, meh, its a matter of choice. I like the EMG 81tw/89 set on the schecter hellraiser guitars which are great guitars. I also like duncans on most guitars. There are hundreds of options where the best option is usually the one you try out before you buy.

One thing for sure though, avoid the floyd.
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Old 01-20-2015, 10:05 AM   #18
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Tone isn't everything. If your guitar just doesn't feel good to play, it doesn't matter how good or bad it sounds.

I would say get both a guitar and an amp. If you have $1500 to spend, you can get a decent amp and a guitar.
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Old 01-20-2015, 10:34 AM   #19
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I've got the little Blackstar Ht5 and can vouch for its quality. The metal versions of the HT series might be more your speed. My only question is do you really need a 100 watt amp? If you're in a band then fine but if this is for home use it's going to be insanely loud.

As others have said you can get both an amp and guitar with that budget. You can get a good asian made tube amp and cab for $600-$800 or get a US made Peavey 6150 combo for $400-$500. You should have enough for a pretty good LTD or Schecter that come with EMGs.
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Old 01-20-2015, 01:31 PM   #20
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Disclaimer: I used to play metal, but no longer do. However, I feel that this is good general advice - some of it is repeated from above, and I'll need people to expand on some things. Thanks.

If it were me, I'd do the following steps in the following order:

Step 1: Get your guitar set up to minimize its current issues. Like an above poster said, this is necessary. It might not fix everything to the point that you want to keep it, but you need it in good condition for Step 2.

Step 2: Research and test amps. Youtube is your friend - watch reviews and demos. Go to Guitar Center and ask to use an amp in one of their soundproof rooms (for the love of God, don't crank the thing on the floor).

Marshalls: Will be expensive and hard to find a deal on. They generally do well with almost anything, but you'd be making quite the commitment.

Mesa Boogie: Probably your best possible choice for metal. Or rock. Or anything except maybe country. Love these amps. Again, expensive and hard to find for a good price. If you can get a good deal on one, jump on it.

5150/6505: I own a 6505+ so this is something I know about. These are pure metal amps, with tons of gain built in. Clean sound on these is meh.

Blackstar: I've only ever used these in store, but they get great reviews and are actually quite versatile.

As to how big, forget 100 watt amps or full stacks. If you bring one to practice, your bandmates will kill you. Bring one to a show that isn't an outdoor arena/festival, and you'll never get asked back. My 6505+ is 60 watts and that might even be too much. 50-60 watts will do you just fine. Large amps will power scaling will be fine, as long as you have something like a half-power option.

Step 3: Purchase your amp. Having tried it out somewhere, you'll know what it should sound like. Scour your local craigslist looking for deals. You'll probably even be able to find people on this forum with something for sale.

Step 4: Having purchased your amp, try it out with your current guitar. Do you like the sound? Is the guitar comfortable? If you don't need a new guitar, a set of decent pickups is next. EMGs aren't my thing (no longer a metal player), but if that's what you like, then by all means. Once again, use the internet to find a guitar that has them installed from the factory, and go to Guitar Center to noodle on them for a while.

Step 5: Still want/need a new guitar? Take stock of your remaining budget, and subtract $200 (the cost of an EMG set plus installation). Then go back to Guitar Center and see what feels comfortable for you. If you already play a Les Paul copy, then 24.75" scale is good to start with. But just about any guitar has models which would accept humbucker-sized pickups.

Happy hunting! And don't spend the entire $1500 if you aren't in a band playing gigs. That's wayyy too much for bedroom playing. [I know, sacrilege!]
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