#1
During the summer I bought a Mesa Boogie Express 5:25 and the amp blows me away! The cleans are divine and the crunch is great and the metal tone is lacking unfortunately. As christmas is coming up I was just planning on getting a bad monkey OD to beef up the heavier side of the amp but I recently saw the Carvin V3 series and it looks like that might be a better amp for me if I can sell my mesa boogie for close to what the carvin would cost new. I play mostly classic rock and metal, big big fan of chuck schuildler and Death. I play alot in my room and record, jams and gigging alittle down the road. Is the carvin worth the trade? I didnt notice it when I first bought the Boogie so I always wonder if I had, what the outcome would be. Also as I'm in canada and the amp is made in the states would nafta protect me from duties and paying tax on it as I'm buying it from the site?
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#2
The 5:25 is the worst amp Mesa makes, IMO. Seriously, it's their bottom-of-the-barrel amp. Try to sell it and maybe look into a used F-30 or DC-3 or 5 series (which were both their bottom-of-the-barrel amps in the past, but were discontinued because they started to cut into Rectifier sales )
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#3
Quote by Raijouta
The 5:25 is the worst amp Mesa makes, IMO. Seriously, it's their bottom-of-the-barrel amp. Try to sell it and maybe look into a used F-30 or DC-3 or 5 series (which were both their bottom-of-the-barrel amps in the past, but were discontinued because they started to cut into Rectifier sales )



Well its the cheapest amp mesa makes yes :P Mesa's bottom of the barrel is on the higher end of the barrel for many amp companies out there.
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#4
Actually, considering only the DC and the F series will be available for the price, the V3 might be better. So go for it.
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#5
Quote by Sonicxlover
Actually, considering only the DC and the F series will be available for the price, the V3 might be better. So go for it.



Is the V3 really an upgrade from the express though?
1st Schecter 8er? in UG's 7 String Legion
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#6
I like the v3 a lot actually. I probably wouldn't trade. I'd save up and get the v3. It's not that expensive.
#7
Quote by hcsn2008
I like the v3 a lot actually. I probably wouldn't trade. I'd save up and get the v3. It's not that expensive.



1450$ canadian in the end unfortunately. Thats alot for a university student unfortunately.
1st Schecter 8er? in UG's 7 String Legion
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#8
well I used to trade amps and guitars a lot and sell all kinds of stuff. I always regret it. In the future you might be wishing you had that mesa back. Maybe not for a main amp but you might have a use for it. It might have some particular tone that would sound right on a recording. I'd just be patient. I don't think I'd trade. But I mean everyones different. The v3 is a nice amp though and very versatile
#9
Quote by hcsn2008
well I used to trade amps and guitars a lot and sell all kinds of stuff. I always regret it. In the future you might be wishing you had that mesa back. Maybe not for a main amp but you might have a use for it. It might have some particular tone that would sound right on a recording. I'd just be patient. I don't think I'd trade. But I mean everyones different. The v3 is a nice amp though and very versatile



Might just be simpler to add an OD to my mesa. Does an OD usually beef up the gain without getting muddy?
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#11
I wouldn't play without an OD pedal It makes my peavey way tighter and boost the lows and highs. Really transforms the amp. I never get muddy. It gets more clear actually.
#12
I was talking to the folks over in a mesa boogie forum and I was hearing that amps with EL-84's can never acheive the metal chunk I'm looking for even with an OD. Would you all agree or disagree ? Metal chunk possible from EL-84 that is the questionn
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#13
An OD won't really beef up the gain any, it will make it tighter, which might make a huge difference as to what you can do with it.

I'm not really a fan of the V3. It always sounded like a B-52, which is great FOR THE MONEY, but not in comparison to say a real recto.
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#14
Quote by MESAexplorer
An OD won't really beef up the gain any, it will make it tighter, which might make a huge difference as to what you can do with it.

I'm not really a fan of the V3. It always sounded like a B-52, which is great FOR THE MONEY, but not in comparison to say a real recto.


And od will beef up the gain if you get one with a pre gain on it. Plus what the level does on an od is drive the tubes... which makes more power amp gain. And if you get something like a bad monkey you can add more pre amp gain also.
#15
Quote by hcsn2008
And od will beef up the gain if you get one with a pre gain on it. Plus what the level does on an od is drive the tubes... which makes more power amp gain. And if you get something like a bad monkey you can add more pre amp gain also.


When running through a drive channel it doesn't get saturated to the point where I would say it's "beefed up". It does more for the feel and sustain than the actual tone. If you want to change the tone you're going to want a different amp, as it does more than any pedal will.
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#16
I have decided to just get a pedal to add some gain. Some peopel have told me to go for a good quality distortion pedal over the express's amazing clean channel and some have said to use an OD/boost to turn the heat up on the pre amp tubes a bit. I'm looking at the digitech bad monkey and Hardwire distortion pedals. What does UG think?
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#18
Quote by forsaknazrael
Why don't you try an EQ pedal? You can dial in some more chunk, and add gain.



The contour control on the express acts like a secondary EQ and I have it all the way to the right so it's giving me a good dark recto sound. Just planning to add an OD around christmas. The blackstar HT-distX, mi audio tube zone and seymour duncan mayhem pedal are at the top of my list so far. They are very expensive though.
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#20
I have the same amp and love it -- it is great for nearly everything except numetal tones. The clean and crunch tones on this amp are particularly good.

For a modern metal tone, I use a 10-band eq -- sometimes in front, and other times in the loop -- to boost the mids, and then take out the mids post-distortion with the contour control. Adjust gain on the eq pedal to taste. You could also just put it in the loop and scoop the mids for your garden-variety thrash tone.

I think the 10-band eq is awesome, since you can do so much with it -- it is extremely versatile.
#21
Quote by forsaknazrael
No, IIRC, the contour works like a midscoop. Like any contour control.

It's also going to kill you in the live mix - you'll get lost in a band situation.


The contour doesn't scoop the mids as much as it adds to the gain and low mids. The DC, F, and Express all share a very similar problem. The bass is too present too often. You have to dial it way back, crank the mids, and crank the treble to get any sort of cut from the amp itself. Switching to contour mode is more or less the extra gain channel; however, an EQ might do more for the express than any distortion pedal will.
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#23
I wish mesa would have worked a little harder on the drive channel. A little bit more gain would have been nice. They do take pedals well, which could compensate someway or another.

You're lucky, you live in the same city as Carvin's HQ.
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#25
Mxr makes the M-108. It has a gain slider and volume slider. Would this work as an eq/distortion type pedal ? I am also thinking the blackstar HT-distX.
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