#1
Hi guys,

I'm new to the forums. It seems like there's some very knowledgable people on here, so thought I'd ask a question that I need help with.

I have played for several years and am at a fairly decent standard. Recently, I've dedicded to upgrade my kit. I'm looking to get my first decent amp to replace the small practice amp I've been using so far. My budget is around £600 ($1000). I've checked out a lot of forums and websites, and been to try out a few amps in stores. I think it comes down to these choices of new amps:

Line 6 Spider Valve 212 (£600)
Marshall DSL401 Combo (£600)
Bugera 333XL-212 120W Combo (or the Bugera 333XL-212 120W, not sure of the difference) (£500)

or I can get second hand one of these (although they are both a little bit over budget but I would pay the extra if it's worth it):

Marshall TSL60 + 1960A Cab
Peavey 6505 + Cab

My main problem is that I am not experienced enough to really tell the difference between a lot of these amps. They all sound great, but that's because I am used to using much cheaper equipment. Is it worth paying the extra and getting the TSL60 or Peavey over the other choices? or are they overkill? Really, all I want is a good quality, versatile amp that will be great for practice and small gigs.

Does anyone have any advice? There are various other threads on choosing amps, but none compare all of the choices that I have above. I have an ESP LTD V401 and a tele copy, and play a lot of metal and hard rock, although I also play a wide range of things.

Thanks
Last edited by Rhetoricus at Jul 17, 2009,
#2
i would get an amp head and cab if you possibly could instead of a combo... i mean come on, lol :P

also, i've heard that the 6505 isn't that great for clean tones, but slays for metal.

people generally complain a lot about the bugera, and I just generally don't like line 6.

if it were me, and the second hand marshall was nice, I would totally go for that. it would also save you from the pain of selling a combo to buy a stack later on.

#4
ignoring filthy little boy may not be such a bad idea.

A half stack is 1) big 2) loud and 3) nice sounding. If it's in your bedroom then you are not going to get the best out of that stack, you won't have anywhere near enough chance to crank it. As fro small gigs if it's big enough to make a difference volume wise between a stack and combo then you'll be mic'd anyway at which point it comes down purely to a sound thing. So i would recommend the combo over the stack until you get into some serious gigging (regular crowd of 1000+ at least)

I personally disliked the line6 spider valve i played - it sounded a bit digital when the gain was turned up but if you're looking for something versatile then it may work because it is pretty darn versatile. I like the marshall DSL. it has good cleans and that wonderful marshall overdrive sound, however it will always sound like a marshall - so probably not great if you're looking to do jazz or some serious Br00t4lz. Bugera - they're metal amps really and i hear they break down a lot, no comment beyond that - i haven't played one in a while because i don't normally look at metal amps :p
The only 6 words that can make you a better guitarist:

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#5
How about a head and a 2X12 cab? It saves room but when you have to lug it a practise or if you're sharing a cab at a gig you'll be thankfull you don't have to carry a full combo around.
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#6
my first amp was and still is a used mesa boogie lonestar V1. paid $1000. and I think it really is the best first amp for the money. 100watts, tube combo, great cleans, great dirty with 2 gain stages + rectifier(rectifier on off switch). its not a metal amp but if you have emg's it gets pretty metal. only complaint is its a little bassy and I prefer trebly amps like the voxac30. this amp is load enough for a gig but heavy.
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#8
Quote by fullsailstudent
my first amp was and still is a used mesa boogie lonestar V1. paid $1000. and I think it really is the best first amp for the money. 100watts, tube combo, great cleans, great dirty with 2 gain stages + rectifier(rectifier on off switch). its not a metal amp but if you have emg's it gets pretty metal. only complaint is its a little bassy and I prefer trebly amps like the voxac30. this amp is load enough for a gig but heavy.


Yes, because everyone has the cash for a Lonestar as their first amp
#9
Quote by TOMMYB22
Yes, because everyone has the cash for a Lonestar as their first amp

are you retarded, he has $1000. I paid $1000 for my lonestar. so how does he not have enough cash? read the post.
EAT YOUR GUITAR GEAR BLOG
Quote by BigDC
how difficult is it to build your own guitar?
Quote by Gibshall
It's hard, annoying, and makes you want to punch a baby.
#10
My argument against 2x12 cabs.

If you are in a band, and you practice together with another guitar and he has a 4x12. He will completely overpower you unless you have some kind of table to raise your cab. The lack of high frequencies, as well as the fact that it is point to the floor will make it really difficult to cut through. This happens when i practice with my band, other guitarists uses a b52 head and matching cab and i have my Carvin V3 and 2x12. We dont have room for a table to prop it up. I try to lean it so it points upwards but it still doesnt cut through well.
#11
Quote by Chaosinborn
My argument against 2x12 cabs.

If you are in a band, and you practice together with another guitar and he has a 4x12. He will completely overpower you unless you have some kind of table to raise your cab. The lack of high frequencies, as well as the fact that it is point to the floor will make it really difficult to cut through. This happens when i practice with my band, other guitarists uses a b52 head and matching cab and i have my Carvin V3 and 2x12. We dont have room for a table to prop it up. I try to lean it so it points upwards but it still doesnt cut through well.

Exactly. My Fireball gets raped in the mix by the other guitarists Windsor and our bass player's 4x10.

Obviously this doesn't count if everything is mic'd.
Washburn HM Idol w/ SD JB in bridge > Ibanez Weeping Demon > Korg Pitchblack > Digitech Bad Monkey > Boss NS-2 > Boss DD-6 > Egnater Renegade > Splawn 2x12 w/ Weber Sig12Bs

#12
Quote by Unskathed
Exactly. My Fireball gets raped in the mix by the other guitarists Windsor and our bass player's 4x10.

Obviously this doesn't count if everything is mic'd.


A $30 Amp stand that extends to waist height solves this problem...

I put my Blues Jr. beneath the stand which holds my Avatar 2x12. I cut through no problem.

I agree with what everyone else has said about stacks. Have you tried the Vox Classic 50 Combo? It runs about $650 and has great clean and distorted tones. If you're going to use it mainly in the bedroom I'd also look into an attenuator.

The Blackheart Handsome Devil is a 15W 1x12 combo ($450) that has extension jacks should you decide to add a 2x12 or 4x12 in the future. It's only single channel, so a distortion pedal or three might be in order, but overall, it's a great little amp for practice and/or live use.
Last edited by suhraddict at Jul 17, 2009,
#13
If you are only playing small gigs and practice I wouldnt buy a stack, as they are generally at least 50w which IMO is too much for those situations. I've played in bedrooms and garages with stacks and it hurts. Look into something around 30 watts and save yourself some money and hearing loss.
#14
Then I would need something to put the head on, i dont want to put the head on the floor and i cant put it on top of the cab since they tilt.
#15
Quote by fullsailstudent
are you retarded, he has $1000. I paid $1000 for my lonestar. so how does he not have enough cash? read the post.


I was thinking the same thing...I was like why did he make that comment, the guy said he has $1000 to spend.

I guess it helps to read the thread before commenting
#16
It depends on what styles you play and also whether you gig/jam with a drummer.
Gear
Tokai Love Rock
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#17
Thanks for the advice everyone. It seems that most people seem to think a half stack is a bit overpowered for a practice amp, so I would be using it at either a really low volume (which I've heard ruins the tone - is this true?) or I'll go deaf.

So, although I am tempted by the TSL60 because it's a such a quality piece of kit, I guess a combo is the way to go because I will get more out of it. Remember this is supposed to be a practice amp. But which one out of the three combos shold I go for?

Line 6 Spider Valve 212 (£600)
Marshall DSL401 Combo (£600)
Bugera 333XL-212 120W Combo (or Bugera 333XL-212 120W) (£500)

I only tried the Line 6 in a store. I've heard the DSL401 is an al around good amp. I love the look of the Bugera and it's made for metal. I've never heard of The Blackheart Handsome Devil. This is half of the problem, there are so many available and it's impossible to try them all before buying...

So go on, if you were me and HAD to choose one of those three for metal/rock with an LTD 401V, and also wanted a bit of versatility, what would it be?
Last edited by Rhetoricus at Jul 17, 2009,
#18
I don't understand why you guys have problems with 2x12's at practice? I mean, I understand 'why' it can be a problem, but at the studio my band practices at, one of the practice rooms has a 4x12 and a 2x12 and we never have any problems...
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#19
You might like a line 6 vetta, look into those.
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#21
Quote by Rhetoricus
<snip>So go on, if you were me and HAD to choose one of those three for metal/rock with an LTD 401V, and also wanted a bit of versatility, what would it be?


The Marshall DSL combo.

The Spider Valve sounds like a bad tube amp with a digital brain...IMHO; and the Bugeras are notoriously unreliable from what I've heard.
#22
You didn't answer my question.....
Gear
Tokai Love Rock
Vox AC4
Danelectro Transparent Overdrive
T.C. Electronic Nova Repeater
Stomp Under Foot Violet Rams Head
#23
Quote by demitriv
It depends on what styles you play and also whether you gig/jam with a drummer.


All three of the amps mentioned are pretty versatile as far as covering different styles and they all have more than enough power to deal with a drummer -- heck my 15W Blues Jr. can be heard with a drummer!
#24
Yea but if he would answer those questions then we can tell him what amps would suit him best.
Gear
Tokai Love Rock
Vox AC4
Danelectro Transparent Overdrive
T.C. Electronic Nova Repeater
Stomp Under Foot Violet Rams Head
#25
Quote by demitriv
Yea but if he would answer those questions then we can tell him what amps would suit him best.


From the original post:

Really, all I want is a good quality, versatile amp that will be great for practice and small gigs.
Does anyone have any advice? There are various other threads on choosing amps, but none compare all of the choices that I have above. I have an ESP LTD V401 and a tele copy, and play a lot of metal and hard rock, although I also play a wide range of things.
#26
Oh right I missed that bit.
Gear
Tokai Love Rock
Vox AC4
Danelectro Transparent Overdrive
T.C. Electronic Nova Repeater
Stomp Under Foot Violet Rams Head
#27
Bugera amps break down a lot apparently. look into the marshall, and maybe some mesa tube combos
#28
I would go with a used Vetta (preferably an older one that has been upgraded to Vetta II firmware; I bought mine for only $530). Because it is solid state, it will sound great at bedroom volumes but it also has enough wattage for gigs and won't go into that scratchy SS clipping.
#29

07 Fender American Deluxe Strat
07 Fender Custom Telecaster
09 Seymour Duncan Pickup Booster
09 Fulltone OCD V.4
10 Ibanez WH-10 V.2
09 Splawn SuperStock
10 Jet City JCA-20
97 Fender Hot Rod Deluxe

Yeh the SICK! bit sounds a bit stupid.

#31
Quote by ChrisBW
I don't understand why you guys have problems with 2x12's at practice? I mean, I understand 'why' it can be a problem, but at the studio my band practices at, one of the practice rooms has a 4x12 and a 2x12 and we never have any problems...

It's more of an issue at shows for me than it is at practice.
Washburn HM Idol w/ SD JB in bridge > Ibanez Weeping Demon > Korg Pitchblack > Digitech Bad Monkey > Boss NS-2 > Boss DD-6 > Egnater Renegade > Splawn 2x12 w/ Weber Sig12Bs

#32
Quote by 667
Peavey 3120 maybe?

+1 at GC u will get a free 4-12 cab
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#33
Just in case anyone who posted on this thread is interested, in the end I got a second hand Mesa Boogie F30 for £400. It sounds amazing and was well under my budget.

Now I'm collecting some pedals to go with it. Can anyone recommend any pedals that I should look out for? I am trying to get an Ibanez Tubescreamer as I've heard they are great.
Last edited by Rhetoricus at Jul 27, 2009,
#34
for an OD pedal i suggest the Fulltone OCD
To buy:

Line 6 MM4
Voodoo Lab power
Mesa Boogie Single rectifier
Done
Boss TU-3 Done
Shure SM58 Done



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