#1
Hey guys, my neverending amp search is coming close to, well, ending

I had my heart set on Splawn, but I've realized that won't happen with myself being a broke teenager. So, I have my heart set on a JCM 800. I figure if MatrixClaw sold his Nitro and bought one, it must be pretty close

I can find 2204's a lot cheaper than 2203's, but I played a 2203 and fell in love. I haven't played a 2204, however.

So my question is, are the sounds of both very, very close and what are the differences in the tones (one is warmer sounding, one has more bite, ect.) between the two?
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#2
2204 is 50W version.

Edit: more info!


You have two basic garden variety Marshall JCM-800s. There are the 1 channel and 2 channel amps.

Each variety also comes in both 50W and 100W versions.

The JCM-800 2204 is the single channel 50W version
The JCM-800 2203 is the single channel 100W version.
The JCM-800 2205 is the dual channel 50W version.
The JCM-800 2210 is the dual channel 100W version.

From the browsing I've done, the 50W models are harder to come by then the 100W models; and I'd take a 50 over a 100 easy, but I couldn't find one at the time of my purchase.

Typically, the single channel version is colloquially called the 2203 version and the dual channel is colloquially called the 2210 version.

The 2203 versions have a more vintage tone then the 2210 models. The 2203 uses valve for all it's distortion, and because it lacks in a large number of valves, it also lacks a large amount of distortion.

The 2210 is a remake of the 2203 and uses the same circuitry, save for what's called diodes. Diodes are what is found in "analogue" foot pedals (the TS-9, for instance) and they essentially further distort the already distorted signal by clipping the sound waves into sin waves.

Some tube purists say that the diodes don't make it a "true tube amp". Well, I call rubbish because many, many, many amps use diodes for distortion, like the Marshall Jubilee, one of the most influential amps ever created. Also, Fender, Mesa, Peavey, and loads of other amp companies use diodes; there are even botique amps that use diodes because diodes allow for more gain without the use of a large amount of tubes.

Here is a chart that I've conveniently edited for you.

GEAR
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#3
Thanks, I've read through Gabes Marshall thread a few times haha. I know it's the 50 watt version, and will have a little less headroom, but I've noticed that sometimes different wattage versions of the same amp will sound a little different, and sometimes they won't (ala Peavey VK.) I would like to know if this is the case with the JCM. But thanks WD.
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#4
Hahahaha, balls. That made me happy. But so true.

But to answer your question. They're the same amp, just the 2204 is actually useable outside of a gig.
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#5
Quote by mcraddict81592
Hahahaha, balls. That made me happy. But so true.

But to answer your question. They're the same amp, just the 2204 is actually useable outside of a gig.

Psh, barely.
GEAR
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#6
^Barely the same amp or barely usable outside of a gig?
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#7
Quote by classicrocker01
^Barely the same amp or barely usable outside of a gig?

Barely usable outside of a gig. You'll notice different bass response and the tiniest twitch of a volume difference between the 100w and 50 watt version. I love the feel of 50 watt amps Or at least, the feel of my Randall at 50 watts >>
Then there's this band called Slice The Cake...

Bunch of faggots putting random riffs together and calling it "progressive" deathcore.
Stupid name.
Probably picked "for teh lulz"

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#8
What's the difference in the bass response? Advantage 2203 or 2204? And I think I'll be okay, I live in the country and could crank a Plexi if I wanted to.
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#9
100 watt has more grunt, more clean headroom and just has a cleaner tone in general. It might work better if you want the amp to break up a little at lower volumes, but 50 watt amps tend to sound a little... ah... messier than their 100 watt counter parts. Crank a 50 watter and a 100 watter, the 100 watter will sound clearer, more defined, better bottom end.
#10
^ Which is great. However, the 2204 has its own advantages and character. The tone of a cranked 2204 sounds brown and warmer than the 2203. It's also a bit punchier, albeit less defined as al already mentioned.

Basically it comes down to taste and what you're looking for. Keep in mind that all of these differences are subtle and the basic sound they both produce is essentially the same.
Everyone is entitled to an opinion.

Feel free to express yours so I can make an informed judgement about how stupid you are.
#11
Quote by classicrocker01
^Barely the same amp or barely usable outside of a gig?

That one
GEAR
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#12
Ok, thanks guys. I do like the fact that the 2204 is punchier and warmer, and cheaper. Sounds like I know what I'm saving for.
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#13
Quote by bubb_tubbs
^ Which is great. However, the 2204 has its own advantages and character. The tone of a cranked 2204 sounds brown and warmer than the 2203. It's also a bit punchier, albeit less defined as al already mentioned.

Basically it comes down to taste and what you're looking for. Keep in mind that all of these differences are subtle and the basic sound they both produce is essentially the same.
Browner is a very good way to put it.
#14
i would say go for the 50 watt. (2204) You really will never need 100 tube watts for any kind of gig especially with a jcm 800. they are wicked loud amps. From my experience, the 50 watt is warmer sounding, and since you can push the tubes harder you get some nicer tones out of it.
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#15
My personal choice is the 50w. I don't know what you are wanting to play with the amp, but if you are concerned about headroom I actually suggest E34L tubes which are a bit harder to push and take more volume for breakup. They have a pretty sweet sound and if you want to play heavier stuff I just boost mine with a TS808 clone.
#16
Whatever you do, base your decision on what you think sounds better, not because of volume. The difference in loudness between the 100W and 50W versions is basically nothing - my amp already blows eardrums at 5.
Everyone is entitled to an opinion.

Feel free to express yours so I can make an informed judgement about how stupid you are.
#17
Ok, thanks. I know there will be very little volume difference (although 50 watts is enuogh for me anyways), and it sounds like there is minimal tone difference, so this is the amp for me. I'm gonna mainly use it for thrash metal BTW.
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#18
Quote by classicrocker01
Ok, thanks. I know there will be very little volume difference (although 50 watts is enuogh for me anyways), and it sounds like there is minimal tone difference, so this is the amp for me. I'm gonna mainly use it for thrash metal BTW.

You might want to consider the 100W instead then, for the increased clarity, definition, and bass response.

It's a better amp for metal chugga chugga than the 2204. And they should be basically the same price - anybody who's charging you significantly more for the 100W is cheating you.
Everyone is entitled to an opinion.

Feel free to express yours so I can make an informed judgement about how stupid you are.
#19
Quote by bubb_tubbs
You might want to consider the 100W instead then, for the increased clarity, definition, and bass response.

It's a better amp for metal chugga chugga than the 2204. And they should be basically the same price - anybody who's charging you significantly more for the 100W is cheating you.

It's from Ceriatone. And I'm only talking Metallica type metal, not the BR00TZ. There's a $160 difference, and I'm broke as hell.
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#20
Quote by classicrocker01
It's from Ceriatone. And I'm only talking Metallica type metal, not the BR00TZ. There's a $160 difference, and I'm broke as hell.


its not like metallica doesnt have the chugga chugga sound yeah id go for the 100 watt, the low end will be less muddy even at low volumes.
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#21
^ I know, I was just making sure that was clear

Ok, I gues I'll spend that extra $160 if it will be that much better.
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#22
Can't you still remove the outer two tubes to take it down to 50 watts? Or install a switch to go between them?
Then there's this band called Slice The Cake...

Bunch of faggots putting random riffs together and calling it "progressive" deathcore.
Stupid name.
Probably picked "for teh lulz"

Mod in UG's Official Gain Whores
#23
New question: Would a Silver Jubilee clone be better, and if so, 2550 or 2555?
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#24
Quote by classicrocker01
New question: Would a Silver Jubilee clone be better, and if so, 2550 or 2555?

Go for the 100W Jub. It should have a triode-pentode switch anyways if you want to take it to half power for 50W dynamics.
Everyone is entitled to an opinion.

Feel free to express yours so I can make an informed judgement about how stupid you are.
#25
^ Ok, because it's the same peice as a 2203.
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#26
Quote by classicrocker01
^ Ok, because it's the same peice as a 2203.

Normally I would suggest the 2203 since I prefer pure tube distortion and single channel, but the Jubilee is just so damn good.

Make sure that Nik puts the triode/pentode switches in like the original Jubilee before you buy one, though. If they don't come stock, it'll cost you a wee bit extra.

I'd still go for it anyways, but maybe it'll influence your decision.

Quote by Shinozoku
Can't you still remove the outer two tubes to take it down to 50 watts? Or install a switch to go between them?

Yeah, you can just pull the outer tubes.
Everyone is entitled to an opinion.

Feel free to express yours so I can make an informed judgement about how stupid you are.
#27
Which Mesa amp uses diodes for distortion? I know they use diodes for rectfication but not for distortion.
#28
Quote by classicrocker01
Ok, thanks. I know there will be very little volume difference (although 50 watts is enuogh for me anyways), and it sounds like there is minimal tone difference, so this is the amp for me. I'm gonna mainly use it for thrash metal BTW.

The 2210 model has more gain on tap and it's much more defined at higher gain levels.
GEAR
Epiphone SG-400
Marshall 1987 JCM-800 2210 100W

Proud Member of:
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