#1
Hello, I’m thinking about getting an amp and have some amps in mind but I’m a little confused. What is the way to go? A stack or a combo amp? If I had the money I would get a stack but as of now I think I could only afford a combo. I have about 1000$ I can spend. Does it really make a difference if I get a combo or a stack if I was playing a gig and it was going through a PA anyway?
Last edited by halfbakedj14 at Sep 1, 2010,
#2
the main difference between a combo or stack are price and portability. if you can get your own stack to a gig every time then do it, but if not then a combo may be advisable. also for a really good stack you've only got the money for a head.
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#4
When you have enough wattage, it doesn't really matter loudness wise. The only thing is you can never just get a head : you have to sell the combo and get another combo, whereas with cabs and heads, you can keep the same cab, while trying out different heads. If you've found a combo that you will never want to change from, that's all well and good, but it's slightly impractical to have to keep selling combos until you find one you like (or realize a previous one was your favorite).

TL;DR No
#5
most combo's are open back, so they sound a bit different and project differently than most cabs which are closed back.

different tones.
I wondered why the frisbee was getting bigger, then it hit me.
#6
get a combo and run it to a cab....best of both worlds

you have portability when you need it and you have the presence of a 412 when you need it as well.

its what i do!
#7
Combo... But if you can afford a head and cab and can get it around easily then go for the head and cab option because it will be better quaility sound.
Marshall Vintage Modern 2466 and Gibson Les Paul Custom is litteraly sex in my ear!!!

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#8
I'm done with combos unless it's a small one for a bedroom. Mainly because that way I'm not limited if I want the sound of my amp with different speaker configs. Later I plan on getting an Orange Thunder 30 next spring when I have a job, and I'll be able to use it with my current 2x12 cab... or a 1x12 cab... or a 4x12 cab... (this is also very helpful if you're playing shows, some bands are nice enough to share cabs so that all you have to do is bring your head) and if I were to get just the combo, I'd be stuck. Plus tube combos tend to be pretty freakin heavy.
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#9
Quarter stack. 2x12 cab and a head.

For example, take my setup: Peavey 6505+ head for $650, Randall 2x12 cab for $300. $950 for a rig that kicks ass in the bedroom and in a band setting. Portable enough so that I don't throw my back out, yet still built like tanks.
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#12
Quote by 311ZOSOVHJH
Budget?
New or Used?
Home or Gig?
Genres played?
Current Gear?
Closest City?


$1000
New
Both
Alternative, Classic Rock, Metal, Punk
Cheap SS amp that I hate!! I have a bunch of pedals that I really like so an amp that didnt have a lot effects wouldn't be a problem
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#14
In the world of tube amps it's like this

Combo amps have an open back which gives them more top end and less punchy bass. The overall tone is slightly more "airy" and open and less directional. Also, combo amps tend to get more background noise due to tube rattle and reverb rattle simply because these are placed right next to the speaker. For really high gain the noise can be irritating but for lower volume and lower gain it's rarely a problem and some people actually like the noise.

stacks usually have cabs with closed backs. The closed back gives you less top end but the bass is tighter, punchier, more defined, and has more power behind it. The cabs end up being very directional which means it sound can very greatly depending on where you are standing in relation to the speaker. Because you can keep the head away from the speakers it means you can cut down on the noises that crop up when a valve amp is vibrating but if you are stacking the head directly on the speakers then it's not gonna cut down those noises much.

Then there is the obvious 1amp vs and amp and a cab to lug around. Which is easier depends on what amp you have. I'd rather take a 100watt marshall and a 412 cab separately than 1 super reverb combo on it's own if I had lug the thing on stage but if I had a deluxe reverb or a marshall stack I'd rather carry around the deluxe reverb.
#15
You have a decent budget. I'm not sure if that includes a Speaker cab but here are my thoughts.

New? Most everything on this page I linked below (outside of some of those Fenders) would work. Depends on how much you play Punk vs Metal. The Egnater Renegade head is focking killer for $999 new and it will do just about anything. Very versatile. Also the Peavey Butcher, Fender Super Sonic (maybe) and the Orange Rocker on the previous page would be great. They are a bit over budget but you can get 10-15% off at GC most times and also look at scratch and dent.

http://www.guitarcenter.com/Amp-Heads-Guitar-Amplifiers1,Page-4.gc?o=2&ipp=25


Used? In addition to what Greg found - I'd be all over this stuff listed below. See the Renegade. I'm not saying all of these are perfect for both Punk and Metal. Metal usually requires a fair amount of headroom where punk does not. These were all posted just in the past few days so it should give you an idea about how active your craigslist is. Just because it is used does not mean it is bad or that it has issues. Trust me, when I first started amp hunting there was no way I would buy a used amp. Now that I know more about them there is hardly any way I would buy one new

http://chicago.craigslist.org/search/msg?query=amp&srchType=A&minAsk=500&maxAsk=1100

Sep 1 - Egnater Renegade 65w Head FS/FT - $700 (Elmhurst) pic

Sep 1 - MESA SINGLE REC COMBO W/ FLIGHT CASE, GEORGE L'S AND MONSTER CABLES. - $800 (CHICAGO) pic

Sep 1 - Marshall TSL100 Head - $900 (Lockport) pic

Aug 31 - Marshall DSL 100 Head - $800 (Downers Grove)

Aug 31 - Mesa Boogie .50 Caliber Combo Amp & 1 x 12 Cabinet - $550 (Barrington, IL) pic

Aug 31 - Mesa Boogie Combo Amp: Rect-O-Verb 50 Single Rectifier w/opt Case - $1100

Aug 31 - Mesa Dual Rectifier - $1100 (Albany Park) pic

Aug 31 - Marshall 2204 JMP 50W Amp Head - $1090 (Lincoln Square) img

Aug 30 - 5150 signature EVH head for sale.... - $600 (Chicago) pic

Aug 30 - Peavey "Triple XXX" 120W Head + 4x12 Cab - $1100 (Lakeview) pic

Aug 30 - FS: Peavey 6505+ Plus 120W Head - $800 (Chicago - Ukranian Village) pic

Aug 29 - LANEY HEAD - $500 (N.CHICAGO) pic

Aug 29 - Bogner Alchemist - $700 (DuPage County) pic

Aug 27 - FS/FT Peavey Butcher Head + Matching Cab - $650 (Niles)

Aug 26 - Rivera Knucklehead 55, Late 90's! - $650 (South Elgin) pic

Aug 26 - Marshall JCM 800 - $600 (Chicago) pic


Again, a lot of these will need a Speaker Cab to operate but hey - you gotta start somewhere


good luck
Last edited by 311ZOSOVHJH at Sep 1, 2010,
#16
For that Egnater head, what about speakers then? I mean I guess I could wait and save up some extra $ to get the $599 speakers for but are there any decent cheaper speakers I could use with it?
#17
there is an egnater tourmaster 2x12 for $300 in round lake. also a mesa 4x12 for $400.

feel free to check craiglist homie.
I wondered why the frisbee was getting bigger, then it hit me.
#18
I mean are there any specifications I should be looking for in speakers so that I know they will work good with the head?
Last edited by halfbakedj14 at Sep 2, 2010,
#19
the cab should be rated with the same impedence, ohms. 4, 8 or 16.

the cab should be rated to handle wattage that the amp puts out. capable of more watts than the amp puts out.

you have to do some googling here bub. but a simple search should find the answers. start at egnater.com
I wondered why the frisbee was getting bigger, then it hit me.
#21
chicagos clist has been good to me.
I wondered why the frisbee was getting bigger, then it hit me.
#22
To be honest, unless you're playing large venues, then I'd say the main considerations are portability/ storage and how you want to look/ feel on stage.

If you're playing metal, then a small 1 x 12 combo simply doesn't look as menacing as does a stack!

I've used regular stacks and a stereo rackmounted system, which I loved but in the end it was a pain transporting and setting it up, so I eventually went down the combo route and now I can fit everything in the boot/ trunk of my car.

Don't be too put off by a potential 'weaker' tone either. Yep, many combos are open backed and have an airier sound, which you may prefer anyway, but plenty are closed back and can deliver plenty of 'thud' too.

Good luck!
#23
I thinka JCM900 might be up your street. They sounds pretty damn good, and they were very popular in the 90s with punkish bands n stuff...
Marshall Vintage Modern 2466 and Gibson Les Paul Custom is litteraly sex in my ear!!!

"THESE AMPS GO TO 11!!!!!!!!!!"


#24
Quote by philh27
To be honest, unless you're playing large venues, then I'd say the main considerations are portability/ storage and how you want to look/ feel on stage.

If you're playing metal, then a small 1 x 12 combo simply doesn't look as menacing as does a stack!

I've used regular stacks and a stereo rackmounted system, which I loved but in the end it was a pain transporting and setting it up, so I eventually went down the combo route and now I can fit everything in the boot/ trunk of my car.

Don't be too put off by a potential 'weaker' tone either. Yep, many combos are open backed and have an airier sound, which you may prefer anyway, but plenty are closed back and can deliver plenty of 'thud' too.

Good luck!


I'm not looking for looks at all here, strictly tone/playability. Yeah a big cab would look bad ass but I don’t really care, I just want a quality amp.