#1
Okay, first and foremost, I want to make this clear. This is NOT a "what amp should I get" thread. This thread is just to gather opinions and information about a few different heads.

Essentially, you're helping me with my senor project for school.

Now, I'm sure you're all wondering what heads I'm going to be asking about. But first, these are the things that I'm going to need to know/get opinions on. First, there forte (what genre they do best/meant for), versatility, how good each channel is, reliability, quality, overall sound, etc.

Now, you don't have to answer everything on here. You could just answer one question/opinion about one amp, all of them, or any combination like that.

Now, on to the amps. They are and ENGL Powerball, Mesa Dual Rect., and the 6505+

I figured I'd go with these three since a lot of people have experience with them here, as compared to Diezels and other high end stuff.

Anyways, thanks for all the help guys, it's really appreciated!
#2
ENGL Powerball:
Aimed a hard rock/metal. Has a pretty bright tone, cuts through the mix easily. Good clean tones, especially for a high gain amp.

6505+:
Aimed at metal. Has a metallic quality to its tones. Very good low end response. Distortion sounds chunky and "metallic". Cleans can be a bit muddy and unspectacular.

Mesa Dual Rectifier: (I haven't tried this one, but supposedly it's good all-round)
#3
Well if we are talking opinions here I can talk about the dual rect and the 6505+ since I've used both for a pretty long time.

The Mesa Dual Rectifier is a two faced beast. On the one hand you have one of the highest gain amps available with an powerful eq and mesas signature scooped mid tone; but its a beast to tame, and all too often these amps are poorly eq'd due to lack of experience.

Aimed directly at pleasing metal heads, this amp has actually found itself being used by some pop bands and other less-than-ultra-heavy rock; a result no doubt of the versatility of the eq and the different voicing.

Great amps though, very powerful, and very smooth on high gain settings. When setup with a full stack with good speakers and good cabs, they offer gut wrenching bass and screaming highs with sustain that WILL go on for days.

Very reliable, mesa does have a reputation for building amps that can withstand time, and dual rects are no exception. This offers new comers to heavy metal amps an opportunity to get one for cheaper used with nearly the same quality as a new one.

Channel wise, channel 1 sounds similarly to the new tube powered fender amps that lack some of the amazing chime the old dual reverbs or twins had back in the day. That being said, channel 1 is the place to go for any middy powerful yet clean sound, and the voices only help.

To me channel 2 is a waste, it sounds like the creators were trying to emulate a jcm 800, but didn't quite get there. Maybe its just me for not liking that sound but its kinda... dry sounding. A good channel for rhythm, however, since it will blend nicely with a heavier sound. Again proper eq-ing can make or break this channel.

Channel 3 is the reason people buy recto's. The highest, smoothest, and in your face distortion you might ever be able to hear. Liquid sustain and when used with the neck pickup of a high quality guitar, can just make peoples faces melt with a powerful solo.

Peavy 6505+

A heavy metal gain monster. Its sound is legendary for being dark and moody while still having upper frequency chime. However, it has no real usable clean channel since the channel for cleans only goes through 1 tube and may sound tinny to some. This can be remedied by turning back the volume on the guitar when on the lead channel, but this may cause problems for some using noise gates and other effects.

I've personally never seen a 6505+ horror story on UG which is really the place to bitch and moan if anything bad happens to your amp. These amps often go used for half price and last a very long time with a good tube swap.

It has no real versatility, and sits firmly in the middle of metal allowing for you to either go further into higher gain territory like death metal or backed off to enter prog metal and old school heavy rock.
Pain is an illusion.
Schecter Hellraiser C-1 w/ Seymour Duncan JB/Jazz Combo
Pitchblack | Bad Horsie 2 | DS-1 | BF-2 | ISP Decimator | DD6
YouTube Channel
#4
Both the 6505+ by Peavey and the Mesa Dual-Rect are also American Voiced amps. All three of these amps truly are for gain *****s/metalheads. I find the ENGL to have the least presence in a band mix, do to it having a less mids-aimed tone compared to the other two.

The Mesa Dual Rect has an active EQ that stumps some people. You can't simply cut the mids, turn up the presence and highs, and slightly boost the bass and hope to have an orgasmic tone. Oh no. There are sweet spots that usually take time and the amp cranked to find. While it's true most tube amps will have sweet spots, it's ever more important in a dual rect. Rectos are very versatile amps, though. With pop, punk, metal, progressive, and many other genres of music all having musicians that've used them, you can see why. In my opinion, a mesa's "crunch" is an american-voiced version of a typical marshall sound. Think 80s. The main (lead) channel is more like a 6505+ in the sense that it has pounds upon pounds of gain on tap.

The 6505+ has somewhat better cleans than the standard 6505/5150 model. In my opinion, you're better off using a second amp strictly for cleans or throw some chorus over the 6505+s cleans. Most over-react with tone, but not in this case. This amp was made for distortion and that's it. Known for the "brown sound" this is a very dark-sounding amp. With bass and mids galore, it's a gigging musician's dream. Most people cut back on the highs and dip the mids (4 or so) do to the amp sounding somewhat tinny by itself. The presence of this amp is HUGE in a band mix. This amp is strictly for metal/hard rock.

ENGL I've never had enough play time with to make a good review over. I've played with some, but sadly not for too long.
Mah Rig
Guitars:
BC Rich Mockingbird (X2N)
Schecter Hellraiser (81/85)

Amps:
Peavey 5150 head (Distortion obv)
Avatar 4x12 cab (V30s)
Vox AC30 (Cleans)

Board:
EH Small Clone
ZW Sig Wah (meh)
Boss NS-2
#5
Now, I'm sure everyone is gonna be like "Voicing? Please, tell us about it"

If I recall, American voicing is a little bit darker, while the ENGL's voicing is a bit more bright?

And need a little bit of input about the Powerball if anyone's out there who has any experience
#6
By voicing 9 times out of 10 you're referring to the signal path that flows through a tube. el34 (british) based amps will sound more middy and 6l6 (american) based amps will generally have more presence and high end sizzle.

To go back and forth, companies like mesa utilize special switches called voicing switches, these change the circuit values (resistors, capacitors) to try and mimic the sound of another set of tubes.
Pain is an illusion.
Schecter Hellraiser C-1 w/ Seymour Duncan JB/Jazz Combo
Pitchblack | Bad Horsie 2 | DS-1 | BF-2 | ISP Decimator | DD6
YouTube Channel
#7
Quote by sesstreets
By voicing 9 times out of 10 you're referring to the signal path that flows through a tube. el34 (british) based amps will sound more middy and 6l6 (american) based amps will generally have more presence and high end sizzle.

To go back and forth, companies like mesa utilize special switches called voicing switches, these change the circuit values (resistors, capacitors) to try and mimic the sound of another set of tubes.


Awesome, thanks man!

I noticed though that the Powerball can still sounds pretty metal, even if it is more "Middy"
#8
Its a different brand of metal. Powerballs and splawns in general (from clips not personal experience) can pull off a heavier led zeppelin tone better than a marshall can and their over all tone can reach from nice fat sexy blues all the way to early heavy metal. You can even get slayer tones if you know how to eq it.
Pain is an illusion.
Schecter Hellraiser C-1 w/ Seymour Duncan JB/Jazz Combo
Pitchblack | Bad Horsie 2 | DS-1 | BF-2 | ISP Decimator | DD6
YouTube Channel
#9
Quote by sesstreets
Its a different brand of metal. Powerballs and splawns in general (from clips not personal experience) can pull off a heavier led zeppelin tone better than a marshall can and their over all tone can reach from nice fat sexy blues all the way to early heavy metal. You can even get slayer tones if you know how to eq it.


Thanks for the help man, much appreciated! :Cheers:
#10
Sorry for the double post, but I was also wondering...

When people say it sounds "dry", what's it mean?
#12
Quote by 1234streetlight
can you run a combo amp into a cabinet?


Thread hi-jack?

But yes, you can. Just make sure the Ohms are right
#13
Dry can refer to several things. A dry sound can be used to describe a clean sound in a wet/dry setup where there are effects running parallel to a dry core sound.

I've never actually heard anybody say something sounded "dry" per say, but I'd imagine thats the sound that gets produced from a really high gain amp with very little bass or mids and all high frequencies. I'd describe that as being dry and scratchy.
Pain is an illusion.
Schecter Hellraiser C-1 w/ Seymour Duncan JB/Jazz Combo
Pitchblack | Bad Horsie 2 | DS-1 | BF-2 | ISP Decimator | DD6
YouTube Channel