#1
I'm looking into buying a new amp. I have an Ibanez ART100 and an EHM Metal Muff pedal. I play stoner/doom metal, classic rock, and a bit of thrash. I was looking at the Epiphone Valve Jr. combo, as I've heard it sounds quite good with a distortion pedal. However, I'm not averse to SS amps if I can get a comparable tone (especially since the Valve Jr. is somewhat lacking in frills, to say the least). My budget's about $150-200, so I'm really not expecting much, but I'd like something better than the horrific Fender Frontman I'm currently stuck with. Any advice?
#2
There definitely are good SS amps, but in the 200 dollar range, you can get better tubes than anything (Definitely if you look at small amps)
Gear
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JS20S Satriani signature
Epiphone Les Paul Standard
Gibson SG Classic
Randall RM100 Combo w/ Plexi, JTM, Ultra, Recto, and Brown Modules
#3
Quote by Notkcots
Any advice?

Yeah, save more.

If you're determined to work with that budget - the V Jr. likes pedals, yes. In fact, it needs them, because after almost buying one myself, it's pretty bland otherwise. I don't recommend it.

I'm assuming you're not gigging, so you might could find a Fender Super Champ XD or Vibro Champ XD for that price. As far as tubes go, you'll be hard-pressed to find anything decent for $200 unless you go used.
#4
Quote by Flying Couch

I'm assuming you're not gigging, so you might could find a Fender Super Champ XD or Vibro Champ XD for that price.


Nope, I'm not gigging and don't need an especially loud amp. What's the general opinion on the Vibro Champ XD? It's only a bit more than the Valve Jr. and it seems to have more features. I'm going to try them out myself, but I'm interested to hear what experienced players have to say about the amps.
#5
The Vibro Champ is good, but I like the Super Champ a bit better. I really can't put my finger on it, but it just sounds better. Also, try a Bugera V5 or a Peavey Royal 8. Both 5 watt tube, though the Bugera has more features.
#6
Small tube amp? Marshall Class 5

In all seriousness though, don't get something with a small speaker. I made that mistake when I owned my Champ 600. Its a great amp and loves pedals but has no balls cause of its 6in speaker.
The Class 5 I have now is amazing in my opinion and its a simple and loud 5 watt'er. It loves pedals also, really really loves them and you can get it to roar even without a boost or od stompbox. Only problem would be that it'll get really loud. I'd save and also check out the Blackstar combo, I was interested in that also but decided on the Marshall instead.
2003 Music Man Axis Pacific Blue Burst
#7
I went to Guitar Center today and tried the Bugera V5 and the Vox AC4 (I looked for a Fender Vibrochamp there, but they didn't have it in stock ).. I definitely liked the Bugera better (not to mention it's $50 cheaper). Everything sounded great, but I couldn't get the tone very crunchy (even with the pedal) and I played with the EQ for almost an hour. At this point, I'm willing to go with it, but I'd appreciate it if anyone had a suggestion for a more metal-oriented tube amp at a similar price. I heard the Blackhearts are good, but they're too expensive.
#8
Ive got the VJ combo and head and cab. If you can swing it get the head/cab. With my POD and pedals it's a great practice setup. It does just about anything. Needs a better cab for the lower bass frequencies, but still really good for the money.
Dean Icon PZ
Line 6 Variax 700
Dean V-Wing
Dean ML 79 SilverBurst
MXR M 108
H2O Chorus/Echo
Valve Junior (V3 Head/Cab and Combo)
VHT Special 6
Phonic 620 Power Pod PA
Wampler Super Plextortion
Line 6 Pod HD
#10
You can get an ac4tv. Cheap, 10 inch celestian speakers with attenuator and awesome tone at cranked volume.
#11
The Bugera V5's looking pretty good about now, but I've heard some troubling things about Bugera amps, namely them occasionally bursting into flames. How worried should I be? I plan on getting the GC warranty, but are there any other precautions I should take?
#12
All these 5W valve amps are great fun for classic rock and blues, but honestly, they're crap for metal. You'd be better off with a good ballsy solid state/modeller.

Oh, and we don't need to hear your "____ pedal makes my AC4TV sound like a Dual Recitifier" stories.
The fact is that single-ended vintage style tube amps, usually with no onboard preamp drive and farty 8"/10" speakers, are inherently unsuitable for heavy tones.
#13
How does the Vibro Champ XD play with pedals? My local GC doesn't have a display model to try, but the videos of it seem pretty good.
#14
If you can find one used, I see Carvin X100Bs go for less than $300 a lot of times. Of course, you'd need a cabinet with it... but I do think they'd be good for what you play.
#15
Quote by Notkcots
How does the Vibro Champ XD play with pedals? My local GC doesn't have a display model to try, but the videos of it seem pretty good.

It takes them suprisingly very well for an amp with built in effects.
Quote by patriotplayer90
Lolz that guy is a noob.

Egnater
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#16
You've heard right about Blackhearts, they are good. They get a nice crunch on their own and should be able to handle metal pretty well with some help.

I'll give you some advice though: Save more and look used. You can find a Blackheart Little Giant used for $250 on average. It is also totally worth it to look used and spend a bit more. I know from experience. I went from looking at a Squier Classic Vibe 50s Tele to getting a Fender '72 Tele Deluxe reissue. The Fender was more money, but completely worth it as well. I won't have to replace it for a nice, long time.

Same goes for my amp. If you don't want to have to replace or upgrade your amp for a while, go with something that costs a bit more and sounds better.
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plexi


i realize the longshot that is. little giant to humongous one.


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#17
a cheap amp is a cheap amp my friend, it doesnt matter if its tube or solid state. IMO, i would rather have a little spider than a valve junior. the both sound bad, but at least the line 6 has mulitple bad sounds instead of just the one bad sound.
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#18
I have found a Blackheart Little Giant Combo for $250 on ebay. The seller has switched out the original preamp tube for a JJ 12ax7. Anything I should watch out for before buying since it's used?
#19
I, personally, really like solid state. If you can find a used Peavey Bandit in that range, go for it, they have some decent tones and take pedals well. I would suggest a speaker upgrade though, Sheffields suck IMO.
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#22
Well, it turns out the Little Giant Combo I was looking at has no warranty. It's $280 shipped. Are the chances of something going wrong high? Is fixing them relatively inexpensive/easy? It looks like a good deal, but I'm just leery because it sounds like if something goes wrong, I'm screwed.
#23
Quote by DeathByDestroyr
I, personally, really like solid state. If you can find a used Peavey Bandit in that range, go for it, they have some decent tones and take pedals well. I would suggest a speaker upgrade though, Sheffields suck IMO.

This.