#1
I'm still getting my head around the whole amplifier thing and in the quest of finding a new one. I've heard a lot about a distinction in sound between British and American amps because of different valves used. I was wondering if anyone could point me in the direction of some videos or examples of the differences between these sounds since I've got no idea. Thanks.
#2
American amps tend to have 6L6's and British amps tend to use EL34's.

That's about it, but it's not always the case.

EDIT: Also, British voiced amps usually have a more compressed, saturated overdrive while American amps usually have that harsh, crunchy distortion.
Last edited by foob85 at Dec 14, 2009,
#3
Quote by foob85
American amps tend to have 6L6's and British amps tend to use EL34's.

That's about it, but it's not always the case.
I think he means differences in terms of tonal characteristics.

Usually, when I think of American amps, I think of them as being less mid-heavy and having tighter sounding gain. When I think of British amps, I think off them as being more mid-heavy with looser sounding, more growly sounding gain.
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Last edited by Ferrets! at Dec 14, 2009,
#4
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I'm still getting my head around the whole amplifier thing and in the quest of finding a new one. I've heard a lot about a distinction in sound between British and American amps because of different valves used. I was wondering if anyone could point me in the direction of some videos or examples of the differences between these sounds since I've got no idea. Thanks.



It's more complicated than the whole british/american thing makes it out to be, and a lot of it doesn't have much to do with the valves so much as the preamp circuits.

The "classic" british amps are the Vox AC30 and the Marshall Plexi Super Lead. You can youtube for those to get lots of examples. They don't sound alike, so the idea of a distinctive British sound is mostly bunk. Tube-wise, they use el34 and el84 power tubes.

Then there's the "classic" american amps - the tweed bassman, the blackface Fender Twins, Supers, Deluxes etc. for cleans and the Mesa Mark I for high gain. The bassman is it's own beast, but the rest sound a bit more alike because there's a lot of similarity between a blackface Fender and an old Mesa. Tubes are 6L6 variants or 6v6s in the power section.

Then there's amps like a SLO that use a quintessentially american power tube (the JAN 5881, which is a 6L6 variant) but sound like a hot rodded plexi. Go figure.
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#5
Check out the Tone Testing thread for a more precise definition.
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