#1
Hey, I'm kinda new into all the things regarding amplifiers.. I've played for 2 years, and I'm very eager to play alot more! Until now I've just had an Line 6 pocket Pod 2.0, but I just joined a band as lead guitarist and I'm going to need an amplifier (We play rock - Music with some catchy tunes and so on, we've just begun). I was thinking about buying a marshall amp, not just because "all the good guitarists got one", but i really dig the sound, and I really want to go All-In on my guitar. I'm playing a ESP Eclipse II with a Seymor Duncan SH-5 in the bridge.

But now for the serious business...
So, I've been looking for a halfstack, because I read that combos are utter ****. I've been looking around for used amplifiers aswell as new ones. My ideas untill now is to get either:
"Marshall Black Stack"
- DSL100 100-watt tube-topamplifier and a MC412 200-watt 4 x 12" cabinet.
For the price of ~ 2000$

Or the used alternative:
An AVT150H - Used but in great shape
For the price of ~ 500$
In addition I wanted to buy a used cabinet aswell, but I haven't decided which one yet.

I would also like to ask you guys, if there HAS to be anything in common between the top and the cabinet, like if the top is 150Watt, may the cabinet then be above 150 watt?
(I've really tried to read all of this up, but I didn't find anything that were informative enough)

Thanks
Last edited by Decoid at Aug 31, 2009,
#2
It's usually recommended that the amp have less than half the power of the cab. So, 100 watt amp means you should get a 200 watt cab.

Two reasons: 1) the speakers will last longer 2) tube amps put out more power than they're rated for...so...a 100watt amp will spike to 200 watts. Thusly, having a bit of extra power handling in your cab is a good thing.
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#3
Quote by Decoid
I read that combos are utter ****.


you have read wrong good sir. chances are you do not actually need a half stack. do not make the same mistake that I did.
#4
But...in all reality, you're probably not going to crank it that hard. So...150 watt cab for a 100 watt head? Probably OK. 400 watt cab on a 100 watt head? That's fine too.

Make sure you have impedence matching too (4 ohms out on amp needs a 4 ohm cab. don't mess with this part, make them match).
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#5
Quote by DLrocket89
But...in all reality, you're probably not going to crank it that hard. So...150 watt cab for a 100 watt head? Probably OK. 400 watt cab on a 100 watt head? That's fine too.

Make sure you have impedence matching too (4 ohms out on amp needs a 4 ohm cab. don't mess with this part, make them match).

this guy's pretty much got it right

also as far as combos v. stacks, there is no quality gap, there are some combos that i would take before any stack and vice versa, it's just a matter of what you think is easier to lug around.
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#7
So you haven't got anything to say, about the quality of the two rigs?
#8
Yeah, cause a Mesa/Boogie Mark V combo sounds really cr*p.. Nay!! Or a Fender Bassman.. Pro's have only been using combo's to make records with since the 50's!! Dont know where you got "combo's are sh't" from cause that's a ridiculus statement. The Orange Tiny Terror is an amazing sounding amp and it's rated at 15w. Have you actually tried any good combo's or smaller heads? I cant imagine you have saying stuff like that. Someones telling you lies or you havn't tried a good combo.

Having said all that if i was giging a larger place an Engl or Marshall 2203 head would be my pick with a good 4 x 12 cab. It's a bit of a cliche saying this but the best way to find "your" amp/sound is to get down to all the guitar shops you can and try everything.
Last edited by livewire76 at Aug 31, 2009,
#9
Quote by livewire76
Yeah, cause a Mesa/Boogie Mark V combo sounds really cr*p.. Nay!! Or a Fender Bassman.. Pro's have only been using combo's to make records with since the 50's!! Dont know where you got "combo's are sh't" from cause that's a ridiculus statement. The Orange Tiny Terror is an amazing sounding amp and it's rated at 15w. Have you actually tried any good combo's or smaller heads? I cant imagine you have saying stuff like that. Someones telling you lies or you havn't tried a good combo.

Having said all that if i was giging a larger place an Engl or Marshall 2203 head would be my pick with a good 4 x 12 cab. It's a bit of a cliche saying this but the best way to find "your" amp/sound is to get down to all the guitar shops you can and try everything.


+1 and also some pros have been known to link multiple combos together while doing gigs, like Rory Gallagher
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#10
Quote by DLrocket89
It's usually recommended that the amp have less than half the power of the cab.

Since when?

Speakers are also underrated and do the same thing as amps do, thus 99% are rated at RMS, not peak. The Framus Cobra is rated at 100W and its matching cab is also rated at 100W, in all reality, there's no way you will ever need to turn that amp up enough to be producing that much wattage in the first place.


TS: Buy used and get something nice. The DSL heads are pretty good, but the cabs that they come with are the same cabs that used to be for the MGs, which are utter ****. AVTs are alright but nothing spectacular. If you have enough to buy a DSL halfstack for $2000, you can afford to buy a used JCM800 head and a 1960 cab, for less.
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#11
Quote by MatrixClaw
Since when?

Speakers are also underrated and do the same thing as amps do, thus 99% are rated at RMS, not peak. The Framus Cobra is rated at 100W and its matching cab is also rated at 100W, in all reality, there's no way you will ever need to turn that amp up enough to be producing that much wattage in the first place.



It's what Ted Weber recommended to me in an email, for the reasons I stated above.
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#12
I agree with the claw. To most, THE marshall sound is the JCM 800. Its ungodly loud and sounds as marshally as marshally can be(obviously) One used to be my workhorse back in the day and I kinda miss it sometimes.
Quote by MatrixClaw
If you have enough to buy a DSL halfstack for $2000, you can afford to buy a used JCM800 head and a 1960 cab, for less.
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#13
Hey, for yet another day I've been looking around on teh interwebz. This time I looked for the "legendary" JCM 800 head and a 1960 cab, and my results were:
JCM 800 2203 1985 - Has been reduced to 50 watt (2 tubes has been removed) He doesn't know the condition of the preamp tubes, but they sound fine.
1150$
And the cabinet: A JCM 900 1960
From the early 90's - haven't been used alot.
430$

Is that a fair deal or is anything too overpriced? I'm not very much into this, and as said, this is my first amp
#14
Quote by Decoid
Hey, for yet another day I've been looking around on teh interwebz. This time I looked for the "legendary" JCM 800 head and a 1960 cab, and my results were:
JCM 800 2203 1985 - Has been reduced to 50 watt (2 tubes has been removed) He doesn't know the condition of the preamp tubes, but they sound fine.
1150$
And the cabinet: A JCM 900 1960
From the early 90's - haven't been used alot.
430$

Is that a fair deal or is anything too overpriced? I'm not very much into this, and as said, this is my first amp


Sounds about right to me. I'd recommend a 2x12 cab though, unless you drive a van - if this is your first amp you might not realise quite how big, awkward and heavy a 4x12 is.

Out of interest, can you name a few of your favourite guitarists?
Just because a lot of people play Marshalls doesn't mean they're the best choice...it just means Marshall has the money to get the best endorsements!
#15
Quote by livewire76
Yeah, cause a Mesa/Boogie Mark V combo sounds really cr*p.. Nay!! Or a Fender Bassman.. Pro's have only been using combo's to make records with since the 50's!! Dont know where you got "combo's are sh't" from cause that's a ridiculus statement. The Orange Tiny Terror is an amazing sounding amp and it's rated at 15w. Have you actually tried any good combo's or smaller heads? I cant imagine you have saying stuff like that. Someones telling you lies or you havn't tried a good combo.




lol go easy on the guy he's a newbie and only quoting what he was told, that's why he posed the question here
#16
Quote by kyle62
Out of interest, can you name a few of your favourite guitarists?


Yeah sure; I looove:
Synyster Gates - Avenged Sevenfold
Matt Bellamy - Muse
Brian Molko - Placebo (Kinda alternative, but yeah)
The trivium guitarists
Alexi Laiho - Children of Bodom
Jade Puget - AFI
and the Alexisonfire guitarists, to name a few
#17
A combo would be jsut fine ... forget about what youve been told . . just dont pick an AVT and go with a tube .. a JCM 900 combo with 2x12 sell for 600-650 $ used on craiglist sometimes . thats is more than enough power for any situation . JCm 800 are a bit more expensive .


and you should check other company as well .. not only marshalls . in the 80s/90s , marshall sponsered a lot of musicians and even sent empty cab to built a wall of cabinet at a concert .

In the 80s .. if you were taller than your amp .. you werent cool . nobody think like that anymore . The edge from U2 played for the president obama and 1 millions person with an Vox Ac30 ( 30 watts amp . ) .

for large venu the amp is Miced to the PA/board .

when you see wall of cabinet behind a musicians ... these cabs are empty . only one speaker is miced to the board . the other are just empty cab to look cool or to fill empty space on the stage

http://www.bbc.co.uk/berkshire/content/images/2006/07/10/rick_whiteamps_416x300.jpg

the fifth cabinet from the left of the bottom row .. the lower left speaker is where the mic is . the other cab are empty most of the time . Ive seen roadies carrying one marshall cab in each hand ( those were empty cab of course made from cheaper material . )
so basically you only need around 30 watts tube amp 1x12 or 2x12 combo for any venue you may have .

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/e/eb/MarshallStack_Slayer.jpg/800px-MarshallStack_Slayer.jpg

same here .. only one speaker is miced to the board . Kerry king used empty cab at almost every Slayer concert .


dont buy a jcm head with a 2x12 cab .. instead get the combo . you gonna get it cheaper

But half stack look cooler i guess . the have a bit more headroom ... but your gonna pay the price .

just a thought .
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Last edited by Skysc at Sep 1, 2009,
#18
Quote by Skysc
Dont buy a jcm head with a 2x12 cab .. instead get the combo . you gonna get it cheaper.

It might be cheaper, but a nice cab will sound better than the cab in a combo, and be WAY easier to move
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#19
Finally! So, I'm going to buy the amp this weekend for 1150$... The bad bad baaaad thing is, that I can't afford a cabinet, that's when I wondered if it would be unthinkable to use some of my old speakers, they have got enough watts for the JCM 800, but is it so easy, just to put some new plug on the wires?
#20
Quote by Decoid
Finally! So, I'm going to buy the amp this weekend for 1150$... The bad bad baaaad thing is, that I can't afford a cabinet, that's when I wondered if it would be unthinkable to use some of my old speakers, they have got enough watts for the JCM 800, but is it so easy, just to put some new plug on the wires?


What kind of speakers?
#21
Quote by MatrixClaw
It might be cheaper, but a nice cab will sound better than the cab in a combo, and be WAY easier to move

Carrying round a head and cab is easier to move? Wheres the logic in that :S
#22
Quote by Decoid
Finally! So, I'm going to buy the amp this weekend for 1150$... The bad bad baaaad thing is, that I can't afford a cabinet, that's when I wondered if it would be unthinkable to use some of my old speakers, they have got enough watts for the JCM 800, but is it so easy, just to put some new plug on the wires?

No, that won't work.

Buy a combo.

There's no point spending $1150 on something you can't use.
Actually called Mark!

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#23
Quote by marc0mu
Carrying round a head and cab is easier to move? Wheres the logic in that :S

Hmmm, let's see...

Option A.)
One 85 lb combo that is so wide you can barely 'hug' it, and can really only carry by the handle which means you are swinging 85 lbs on one arm.

Option B.)
One 35 lb head, that you can easily cradle in your arms, or carry with the handle, and one 50 lb cab that has a handle on either side, making it easy to lift.

Two trips, I'll give you that, but much easier ones.
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#24
Thread starter, it sounds like you're on the road to making a BIG mistake.

Your number one priority should be TONE. If you go for a head and cabinet or are thinking of purchasing any amplifier over 40W, you're going to struggle to get a good tone out of it without being waaay too loud.

You'll get a much better tone if you invest the money into a combo. A combo at the same price as a head and cab will almost certainly sound much nicer.

You do not need anything over 40W. A lower wattage amplifier will allow you to open it up to get the nice rich tones without deafening yourself or your audience. A high powered amplifier 50W or over will sound wimpy unless it is cranked extremely loudly. It's like a balloon that isn't inflated.

Another point to consider with heads and cabs.. are the speakers a good match for the voicing of the amp? For instance if the amp is naturally bright, and you combine it with bright speakers.. you're going to really be hurting some ears.

Take our advice, save yourself a headache (quite literally) and get yourself a nice combo amp mate. When you're playing in arenas you can get a head and cab

EDIT- Also as mentioned, no point in buying something you can't use

Peace
Last edited by XtAsY2007 at Sep 15, 2009,
#25
Quote by tubetime86
Hmmm, let's see...

Option A.)
One 85 lb combo that is so wide you can barely 'hug' it, and can really only carry by the handle which means you are swinging 85 lbs on one arm.

Option B.)
One 35 lb head, that you can easily cradle in your arms, or carry with the handle, and one 50 lb cab that has a handle on either side, making it easy to lift.

Two trips, I'll give you that, but much easier ones.


Exactly. There are combos out there a single person can barely lift (Mesa Rockerverb, I'm looking at you).

Although that logic stops when you go bigger than a 2x12", obviously.
#26
Quote by kyle62
Exactly. There are combos out there a single person can barely lift (Mesa Rockerverb, I'm looking at you).

Although that logic stops when you go bigger than a 2x12", obviously.

not really, a 412 weighs around as much as a closed back 212 combo and it still has wheels and handles on either side
and i die a little inside every time someone says that having high wattage means you absolutely must be loud to sound decent. it is a LIE. the jcm you are looking at is a bit overpriced. i played one at gc that cost less
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#27
XtAsY2007 I'm just pretty God damn confussed about what to buy then, it's hard for me to get around and try amps, because I live quite long from a shop and I've just heard that the best of the best for rock'n'roll music is a JCM 800
#28
Oh and it's reduced to 50 watts, because 2 of the tubes have been removed (but they're included)
#29
Quote by Decoid
XtAsY2007 I'm just pretty God damn confussed about what to buy then, it's hard for me to get around and try amps, because I live quite long from a shop and I've just heard that the best of the best for rock'n'roll music is a JCM 800


The JCM800 is a fine amp indeed, but it WILL have to be cranked SO SO friggin loud before it sounds nice. 50W is still most likely going to be WAY too loud.

If you're going to be spending alot of money, I really would see if you could try some amps before you buy one.

I'll recommend you some nice combo's in your price range in a little while.. i have to head out for abit, although I'm sure the other fine fellows here will help you
#30
Quote by Holy-Diver

and i die a little inside every time someone says that having high wattage means you absolutely must be loud to sound decent. it is a LIE.


So you're accusing me of lying? No, I'm just going by my experience. Why would I want to lie to a person I'm trying to help? Some high powered amps can still sound quite decent at more reasonable volumes.. yes. but to really sound their best they DO need to be opened up to a very loud volume. Particularly the JCM800. Alot of 50W - 100W amps DO sound wimpy at anything less than half volume.

Lower wattage allows you to achieve those rich tones at much more sensible and useable volumes.
Last edited by XtAsY2007 at Sep 15, 2009,
#31
Quote by XtAsY2007
So you're accusing me of lying? No, I'm just going by my experience. Why would I want to lie to a person I'm trying to help? Some high powered amps can still sound quite decent at more reasonable volumes.. yes. but to really sound their best they DO need to be opened up to a very loud volume. Particularly the JCM800. Alot of 50W - 100W amps DO sound wimpy at anything less than half volume.

Lower wattage allows you to achieve those rich tones at much more sensible and useable volumes.


I agree with you here. just because some people get what they consider acceptable tone in their bedrooms on a 100w amp, doesnt mean they're getting the best performance out of the amp. opening an amp up is what seperates decent tone from amazing tone.

do you really think any of the professional musicians using 50-100w heads are just barely turning them up? of course not, they're cranking those things!


and dear mr thread starter,

Marshalls are not the end all and be all of amplifiers. There are less professional musicians from a wide variety of genres using Marshalls than there are professional musicians using Marshalls. You've been mesmerized by hear-say and a name tag. Not to say that Marshalls are bad, of course the right ones are fantastic.

you also dont need a stack to be heard, a 1x12 combo is just fine when mic'd. and combos are not ****, thats the dumbest thing I've ever heard. dont get suckered into aesthetics before you end up buying an MG.
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#32
Maybe also look into some other brands than Marshall. There are so many other brands. I have been 100% sure that I want a Marshall DSL, but then I heard some Orange amps and the Blackstar Series One I was like "**** the Marshall."
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#33
Quote by kyle62
Exactly. There are combos out there a single person can barely lift (Mesa Rockerverb, I'm looking at you).

Although that logic stops when you go bigger than a 2x12", obviously.

My Mesa Road King combo was heavier than my Marshall head and Framus cab combined
Quote by Dave_Mc
I've had tube amps for a while now, but never actually had any go down on me
Quote by jj1565
maybe you're not saying the right things? an amp likes to know you care.





www.SanctityStudios.com
#34
Quote by XtAsY2007
So you're accusing me of lying? No, I'm just going by my experience. Why would I want to lie to a person I'm trying to help? Some high powered amps can still sound quite decent at more reasonable volumes.. yes. but to really sound their best they DO need to be opened up to a very loud volume. Particularly the JCM800. Alot of 50W - 100W amps DO sound wimpy at anything less than half volume.

Lower wattage allows you to achieve those rich tones at much more sensible and useable volumes.

yes but the jcm 800 in question has clipping distortion. needless to say, the best tone starts at around 3.5, which is pretty loud, but not cranked.
im not calling anyone a liar, im just saying that you can get good home tone while getting great band tone

edit:poo wrong jcm800. nvm
Ibanez XPT707 Xiphos
Schecter C-7 Loomis FR

Mesa Boogie Mark III blue dot Coliseum

Mesa Traditional 4x12 v30's x EVM 12l's


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Last edited by Holy-Diver at Sep 15, 2009,