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#1
Alright so I live in an apartment and I am unable to play loud (except on mondays when I'm off). I'm rockin a Roland Cube 20x right now and I am pretty happy with it. But IMO NO solid state amp can get the same tone as a tube amp. I think it's a fact actually. I'm debating on whether or not I should get myself a tube amp. I play heavy metal mostly and some clean stuff too. I play some decent sounding guitars and I think a new amp would make a huge difference. I was looking into either the Blackstar HT 5 watt combo, or the Orange Tiny Terror combo. I just don't know if it would be worth it since I have to play at low volumes all the time. Tone- Tube > Solid State


In your opinion, even though I can't play at high volumes, do you think I should look into getting myself a tube amp?

I'm sorry if this question has been asked before.
thanks
Stuff:
-Orange Tiny Terror head
-Avatar 112 Cab
-Roland Cube 20x
-Ibanez SA
-Ibanez RG7321
-Fender MIM Strat
-EB Music Man SUB 1
#2
I would get the tiny terror, for 2 reason, 1 being the tone is just fantastic, and second not many people have orange :P lol But too expensive for me too, I need a job lol
Panties 'round your knees
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Anything goes tonight
#3
Ive never tried a tube amp, should I wouldnt know for sure, but apparently 15W tube is equal to like 100 W solid state. Thats just what I've read online.

So in that case, no, I would not.

ALSO: I heard that most tube amps dont sound as good at low volume
#5
Despite numerous rumors to the contrary, a tube amplifier won't put out ten times the power of a solid-state amp. A tube amp can outperform its RMS rating for brief periods (this is known as "Peak Power") but even then, it isn't going to drown out an amp that is eight or ten times more powerful. Peak Power is hardly used as a measure of an amplifier's power anymore because it isn't something the amp can keep up indefinitely. Besides, running a tube amplifier beyond its capacity will burn the tubes a hell of a lot faster than usual.

It sounds like you won't be happy with anything less than an all-tube amplifier, so you should get one. The tone usually is better than that of a solid-state amplifier, and you can always turn it down to avoid driving the neighbors nuts. Another thing to consider is that good tube amplifiers become more expensive with each passing year, so if you can afford to buy one now, your wallet will thank you later on. Small tube amplifiers are fine, but if you've been bitten by the tube amp bug to the degree that I think you have, you won't be happy with anything less than a 50-watt 2x12 combo...and maybe even a 50-watt head. Check out a bunch of them and see which one you can't live without.
Last edited by FatalGear41 at Nov 1, 2009,
#6
Quote by FatalGear41
Despite numerous rumors to the contrary, a tube amplifier won't put out ten times the power of a solid-state amp. A tube amp can outperform its RMS rating for brief periods (this is known as "Peak Power") but even then, it isn't going to drown out an amp that is eight or ten times more powerful. Peak Power is hardly used as a measure of an amplifier's power anymore because it isn't something the amp can keep up indefinitely. Besides, running a tube amplifier beyond its capacity will burn the tubes a hell of a lot faster than usual.

It sounds like you won't be happy with anything less than an all-tube amplifier, so you should get one. The tone usually is better than that of a solid-state amplifier, and you can always turn it down to avoid driving the neighbors nuts. Another thing to consider is that good tube amplifiers become more expensive with each passing year, so if you can afford to buy one now, your wallet will thank you later on. Small tube amplifiers are fine, but if you've been bitten by the tube amp bug to the degree that I think you have, you won't be happy with anything less than a 50-watt 2x12 combo...and maybe even a 50-watt head. Check out a bunch of them and see which one you can't live without.


I completely agree...
#7
Quote by Cole419
I completely agree...

+2
i would. I live in an apartment but i have a jcm 2000 dsl 100 watt with a 4x12 cab. You can actually enjoy the tube tone at low volumes by getting an attenuator though. pretty much allows you to turn up your master volume and use the attenuator to adjust the volume level to one withing reason.

ex. set the amp to 4/5 whatever and turn attenuator to like 1 or 2 (this amp is really loud...but actually has an awesome tone)

yeah check out the JCM 2000 dsl though. there excellent tube heads and they do make combo's. great amp for metal, i love playing btbam and stuff like that on it and it sounds great( btw, before i upgraded to this setup a week ago, i was using a rolland cube as well )
#8
In all actuality, a 15W tube amp is around the volume of about a 45W solid state.

But on topic here, I used to live in an apartment with my dad as well. Tube is not the way to go for that. If I were you I'd save your money and try to either A get out of the apartment, B get a much louder solid state amp (the louder it is, the more headroom it has. a 100W 2x12 will sound MUCH better at talking volume than a 15W 1x10.) or C Find somebody who will let you store your amp there, come over, and jam on it who you can trust not to screw it up.

If neither of those are an option, stick with your roland.
Quote by fly135
Great list Rutch. On re-reading this one I'd have to say Solid State means not liquid or gas.

I figured it out.
#9
hmmmm Ishiga that is not a bad idea. I do jam with some people. And one of them is a good friend of mine who also plays guitar, I trust him. Man he would be happy to let me store my amp as his house. I'm over their all the time anyway.
A- Their is no possible way for me to get out of this apartment. For a while anyway
B- Ehhh I don't think a solid state gets much better then a roland cube. Louder yes. Tone wise no. I do also own a Randall RX75 combo, and a Fender Frontman. Both pretty loud. But the tone suckss.
Stuff:
-Orange Tiny Terror head
-Avatar 112 Cab
-Roland Cube 20x
-Ibanez SA
-Ibanez RG7321
-Fender MIM Strat
-EB Music Man SUB 1
#10
Quote by Fives
I would get the tiny terror, for 2 reason, 1 being the tone is just fantastic, and second not many people have orange :P lol But too expensive for me too, I need a job lol
The only reason I wouldn't get Orange is because they are ugly (if they come in black I might...not particularly legit i know but I loathe bright colors)

What's the tonal differences between tube & SS amps and how do they compare when using multi FX boards?

Quote by Ishiga
IIf I were you I'd save your money and try to either A get out of the apartment, B get a much louder solid state amp (the louder it is, the more headroom it has. a 100W 2x12 will sound MUCH better at talking volume than a 15W 1x10.) or C Find somebody who will let you store your amp there, come over, and jam on it who you can trust not to screw it up.
Love your smileys
Last edited by 1nSingularity at Nov 1, 2009,
#11
Quote by 1nSingularity
The only reason I wouldn't get Orange is because they are ugly (if they come in black I might...not particularly legit i know but I loathe bright colors)

What's the tonal differences between tube & SS amps and how do they compare when using multi FX boards?

Love your smileys


Meant it sort of as an A : ) type thing, a list followed by a colon parenthesis. but, smileys popped up and it looked like a nifty bullet.

@Thread Starter - I'd go all for the jam idea if you have somebody you can trust. Just be real careful, I'd hate to see a guitar enthusiast get screwed out of a dream amp.

Back to the SS idea, if your roland cube20 does the job then another SS is out of the question, otherwise I'd suggest upgrading to a higher wattage cube. They only get better with power. I've got a spider 3 15w and 75w. played the 30 and 120's as well. In the spider III family, the more headroom the better the tone.
Quote by fly135
Great list Rutch. On re-reading this one I'd have to say Solid State means not liquid or gas.

I figured it out.
#12
Get a tube that these guys have suggested, and an attenuator.
This ends now, eat the goddamn beans!
#13
I would just get the lowest wattage tube amp you can find. Don't use an attenuator, it does nasty things to the tone.

I have a 20W tube amp, and it still sounds nice even when turned down very quiet.
#14
I'm probably going to get flamed for this, but pick up a Line 6 POD. It sounds great, most people won't know the difference, and hell, even Chuck Schuldiner played a solid state amp, but don't quote me on that.
You know how sometimes you get the feeling that nobody's really listening?

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#15
Quote by trueguitarhero
I'm probably going to get flamed for this, but pick up a Line 6 POD. It sounds great, most people won't know the difference, and hell, even Chuck Schuldiner played a solid state amp, but don't quote me on that.


The POD's are very handy and convenient, but it you don't want to make a any compromises in sound, a tube amplifier is the only way to go. Nothing else can match the warmth, musicality and dynamics of a tube amp.
#17
It's pretty annoying how tube amps are like twice the price of solid states, if not more, and you have either those tiny 5w things or the massive 120w stacks and pretty much nothing in between. So if you do small gigs with your band, but jam in your bedroom a lot of the time and you want a tube amp, you're pretty much screwed.

EDIT: According to your sig, you already have a tube amp?
Gear:
Yamaha F310 acoustic
Ibanez RGR321ex
Peavey Vypyr 30
Last edited by falconthefirst at Nov 1, 2009,
#18
Quote by trueguitarhero
I'm probably going to get flamed for this, but pick up a Line 6 POD. It sounds great, most people won't know the difference, and hell, even Chuck Schuldiner played a solid state amp, but don't quote me on that.


Chuck played a Valvestate Marshall 8100 head

TS: I'd look into the Blackstar if you're gonna just be buying it for playing in your home, if you're planning on using it for jamming to you're gonna need something with more power and an attenuator for bedroom practice
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#19
Ive always thought the Tiny Terror was a piece of shit, but hey, whatever floats your boat.
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#20
Fender Blues Junior. Theres your cleans covered.

Boss Metal Zone/similar pedal for your heavy stuff.
Fender '65 Deluxe Reverb Reissue.
Marshall DSL50 w/1936 cab.
American Standard Strat ('97).
Mexican Standard Strat ('97).
Epi Les Paul Standard.
Epi Dot Studio.
Yamaha APX Electro Acoustic.
Boss TU-2, GE-7.
Blackstar HT-DUAL.
#21
I have a fender hotrod deluxe and play mainly at home at low(ish) volume, the tone is amazing and much better than a solid state that i had before.

distortion and/or overdrive pedals will give you the tone that you want at low volume.
I've been imitated so well I've heard people copy my mistakes.
- Jimi Hendrix
#23
The Vox ac4tv is getting some rave reviews at the moment and includes a power attenuator which gives you quarter, 1 and 4 watts.I'm certainly thinking of getting one once I can find somewhere local with one in stock


Thrench
#24
There are SS amps that are just as good as tubes:

Ampeg VH-140C
Line 6 Vetta
Axe-FX
Roland Jazz Chorus

However, 3 of the four amps I listed are far out of your price range and you want a tube amp.

Get a tube amp, and get a attenuator (I'd reccomend the THD Hotplate) so you can achieve cranked tube tones without cranking the amp.

And if you don't want to get a attenuator, tube amps don't sound that bad when played at a low volume. They just sound better when cranked.

Quote by falconthefirst
EDIT: According to your sig, you already have a tube amp?
The Peavey XXL is a solidstate amp.
Last edited by DIMEBAGLIVEDON at Nov 1, 2009,
#25
If I were you I'd get the tiny terror
Gibson SG Standard, Gibson SG 60s tribute, Edwards Les Paul, Fender Telecaster, Epiphone SG Custom
#26
Quote by falconthefirst
It's pretty annoying how tube amps are like twice the price of solid states, if not more, and you have either those tiny 5w things or the massive 120w stacks and pretty much nothing in between. So if you do small gigs with your band, but jam in your bedroom a lot of the time and you want a tube amp, you're pretty much screwed.

EDIT: According to your sig, you already have a tube amp?


Thats what I have found aswell (about the power of amps). Would a 60 Watt be waay too much for bedroom use? (more specifically the Peavey 6505+).

And how much are decent attenuator?

It's almost a threadJack, but TS may find more benificial information in the answers (and I don't want to start another thread).
#27
im gonna get the fender super champ
15W is a lot but you can always turn it down
#28
Quote by falconthefirst
It's pretty annoying how tube amps are like twice the price of solid states, if not more, and you have either those tiny 5w things or the massive 120w stacks and pretty much nothing in between. So if you do small gigs with your band, but jam in your bedroom a lot of the time and you want a tube amp, you're pretty much screwed.

EDIT: According to your sig, you already have a tube amp?

So true. You can buy a 100W SS for $300 or so, but a 100W tube is $1000+ depending on the brand
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#29
There are tube amps of all kinds of wattages out there now. However a lot of the low wattage amps a expensive. IMO the best sound s from a tube amp come at full volume but even at low volume they sound better than most SS amps. A low watt (1-20 watts) amp is good for clean to classic rock crunch but usually on their own aren't great for heavy modern hi-gain sounds. There is a lot of hate out there for the Tiny Terror, yeah its a bit dark, and a bit fizzy , and blah blah woof woof, but its a pretty good amp for the price. There is a reason its become a fixture in recording studios. An attenuator could be useful. Master volumes are usually tone suckers but some boutique amps($$$) have masters that are pretty good at offsetting this. When I play in my apt I go to the room farthest from any other apartments, shut all the doors and face the amp away from the other apartments and can usually play at decent volumes without pissing anybody off, although still a long way from cranked. IMO tubes are worth it.
#30
just buy a tube combo if you want tone. What does it matter how loud it goes? thats why it has a volume knob.
Guitars:
Ibanez RG350EX
ESP/LTD EC400AT

Soon to have an Ibanez RG1550M, 350M, and RG2610!!
#31
Quote by j37h307

In your opinion, even though I can't play at high volumes, do you think I should look into getting myself a tube amp?



DO IT!

I futzed with SS amps and modelers for years before finally saying "screw the neighbors, I need tubes". Most dramatic improvement in my tone, IMO.
#32
What's the tonal differences than SS and tube amps, and how do they compare when using multi FX boards?
#33
Quote by 1nSingularity
What's the tonal differences than SS and tube amps, and how do they compare when using multi FX boards?


To me at least, tube amps are warmer sounding, more cohesive distortion with less fizzyness, and no digital artifacts, especially on the high frequencies. They just sound sweeter to me. Also, they respond better to input changes - that is, pick heavier or increase the volume on the guitar and the natural distortion on the amp increases accordingly. I found on SS equipment, some responds ok to this with a somewhat natural curve, other SS gear, not at all.

With a multi FX board, or any other pedals for that matter, you need to understand how the amp reacts to being pushed harder. If you use a multi FX with it's own distortion, that distortion and the level you send to a tube amp for it's own distortion may or may not work well together. In which case you'd need to set your amp to the cleaner side to avoid the amps natural distortion. IMO, if that's the case, you may as well use a SS amp. But if the tube amp has good natural distortion, use the multiFX more for overdrive.

Example - I have a Tonelab that sounds decent on it's own with it's heavy distortion models, but take that and send it into a tube and combine it with the tubes distortion and it sounds like butt. To get it sounding ok I need to turn down the amps pregain and set it really clean, but then you're negating half the point of a tube amp. So I run that into an SS for headphone practice. On my tube amps, since I like the natural distortion they give, I use OD pedals set more towards a level boost to just add some hairy cream to what the amp already has. YMMV..
#34
bugera v5 it has a headphone jack.
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edge11
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[feel free to sig this statement]

Gear:
Esp Ltd Ninja 600
Esp Ltd F-50
les paul elite
5watt jcm800 clone
Roland jc-55
Crate V33
Jca20H
Ibanez tubescreamer ts9
Keeley ds-1
#35
I'd be curious how it actually sounds - There's reasons why most tube amps don't have a headphone out and I've found that even with so called "compensation" or whatever marketing BS, headphone outs lose the cab and speaker flavor - I have yet to hear one thru it's own headphone out that I liked well. For that reason, I'd much rather have a mono line out I can run to a mixer for additional EQ, then to headphones.. the additional EQ stage lets me tweak it enough to get it closer at least.
#36
I recently grabbed a Vox Ac4tv, I run at the 1/2 or 1/4 watt setting whichever it is. It's quiet compared to higher wattage amp. I still cannot roll my guitar/amp volume to 10 at the same time without someone in my house complaining. It's not insanely loud, but loud enough. Anyways, great tone. with just volume and tone knobs you can get a pretty good range from good cleans to a decent distortion and crunch. I only have a boss ds-1 pedal and it takes it lovely. That's my suggestion
#37
Quote by falconthefirst
It's pretty annoying how tube amps are like twice the price of solid states, if not more, and you have either those tiny 5w things or the massive 120w stacks and pretty much nothing in between. So if you do small gigs with your band, but jam in your bedroom a lot of the time and you want a tube amp, you're pretty much screwed.

EDIT: According to your sig, you already have a tube amp?


That would be due to the dwindling number of power tubes still in production. With how few companies still make em, they dont waste em on amps to be played at home. It's either backstage rehearsal or more than enough for live performance.
Quote by fly135
Great list Rutch. On re-reading this one I'd have to say Solid State means not liquid or gas.

I figured it out.
#38
Quote by XtAsY2007
The POD's are very handy and convenient, but it you don't want to make a any compromises in sound, a tube amplifier is the only way to go. Nothing else can match the warmth, musicality and dynamics of a tube amp.

Fractal Axe-FX says "Hi!".
Gear:
- Bugera 333
- VJ & VJ cab
- Jackson JS30
- TS9

Bugera Users Militia. We are horrible people. With a sprinkler fetish.
~ BUM: For all things extinguishing

Rackmount Tube Amp Project <<< Updates!
#39
Stick to SS for home-use if you're playing heavy metal. You just can't win. The lower wattage combos are pretty loud. They're meant to sound cranked at lower volumes. You generally don't want that for metal. Metal amps usually have very high wattages to avoid poweramp distortion. The distortion comes from the preamp, not poweramp. But most of those metal amps sound thin and buzzy at low volumes. The purpose of those low wattage amps is to utilize poweramp distortion. You're just not going to find what you're looking for. Tubes are loud. You're not going to get your moneys worth since you're not getting what you actually want.
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