#1
So I have a Yamaha B100-115se that I have been playing my guitar through for a while, even though it is a bass amp. It sounds pretty good with my guitar, not too bassy, not too much high end. The only problem is the sound is kind of sterile, there is no characteristic to it.



This amp is not a tube amp, it is a solid state amp from sometime in the 80s. I love the amp and I really would like to try to get a more desirable tone out of it. My question is though, how can I get a more desirable characteristic tube tone out of it?

Are Sansamps the answer?
I've heard good things about Sansamps, but I've only seen them demonstrated either directly into an audio interface into a computer, or into a tube amp. If these things really are good, I am strongly considering purchasing one of the character series pedals.



Is a tube preamp the answer?
I walked into a store and asked one of the workers about this. He told me to look into a tube preamp. He did tell me it wouldn't necessarily change the characteristic sound too much, but it would help get a thicker fatter tone.

Would a tube preamp help me get some more drive and gain? Does this mean if I work the tube in the preamp that I can get that desired tube break up and distortion?

Buy a tube amp
I'm looking for alternatives first.

If there are any other solutions, or specific products you know of that I might find useful, please let me know. Thanks in advanced for the advice.
Quote by smirnoff_black
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#2
Its not ever going to sound like a valve amp.

The sansamp things are pretty solid.

A valve preamp may have more gain, it may not, that valve break up you're describing comes from output valves distorting on a cranked amp. You cant emulate that. But valves generally add a little warmth and sparkle you wouldnt get from transistors.
#3
+1^^^
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#4
Quote by beckyjc
Its not ever going to sound like a valve amp.

The sansamp things are pretty solid.

A valve preamp may have more gain, it may not, that valve break up you're describing comes from output valves distorting on a cranked amp. You cant emulate that. But valves generally add a little warmth and sparkle you wouldnt get from transistors.


Then why do people wish to have Tube Preamps? Will that add a little more warmth and sparkle to my tone?
Quote by smirnoff_black
Have you ever done this before? It's freakin' sweet! Earlier today, I was bored as hell just laying on my bed. I had an erection, so I started to use my penis as a gear stick and I was pretending I was driving. Has anyone else here ever tired this?
#6
What is the purpose a tube preamp then if the desirable effects are on the output end of the spectrum. Or am I just ignorant?

I'm new to the inner workings of amps, please forgive me. Haha.
Quote by smirnoff_black
Have you ever done this before? It's freakin' sweet! Earlier today, I was bored as hell just laying on my bed. I had an erection, so I started to use my penis as a gear stick and I was pretending I was driving. Has anyone else here ever tired this?
Last edited by Funcoot at Oct 6, 2011,
#7
A lot of people buy tube preamps when they have a rack setup, then they just use one poweramp they like for all the preamps. You're not going to get poweramp distortion, which is what you're talking about, from a preamp. Though you can get lots of nice preamps which will give you better preamp distortion, and they'll warm up and add clarity to your tone, if you spend enough money.

What is the purpose a tube preamp then if the desirable effects are on the output end of the spectrum. Or am I just ignorant?


It depends on what type of music you play. Poweramp distortion is favourable for blues, country, rock etc... whereas most metalheads like having preamp distortion. They have different characteristics. With my 100 watt Valve amp I never get to the point where the poweramp is distorting, but I play metal so that's how I like it. That's the simple answer.
Gear:

Squier Strat
Epiphone Explorer
Agile AL-3100

No AMP
Last edited by evmac at Oct 6, 2011,
#8
With that amount of money, I might just be better off buying a tube amp head and using my combo as a cab then huh?

Either that or grab a character series sansamp?
Quote by smirnoff_black
Have you ever done this before? It's freakin' sweet! Earlier today, I was bored as hell just laying on my bed. I had an erection, so I started to use my penis as a gear stick and I was pretending I was driving. Has anyone else here ever tired this?
#9
Quote by evmac
A lot of people buy tube preamps when they have a rack setup, then they just use one poweramp they like for all the preamps. You're not going to get poweramp distortion, which is what you're talking about, from a preamp. Though you can get lots of nice preamps which will give you better preamp distortion, and they'll warm up and add clarity to your tone, if you spend enough money.



It depends on what type of music you play. Poweramp distortion is favourable for blues, country, rock etc... whereas most metalheads like having preamp distortion. They have different characteristics. With my 100 watt Valve amp I never get to the point where the poweramp is distorting, but I play metal so that's how I like it. That's the simple answer.

I'm not a big metal fan, so a tube preamp might not even really be up my ally it sounds like.
Quote by smirnoff_black
Have you ever done this before? It's freakin' sweet! Earlier today, I was bored as hell just laying on my bed. I had an erection, so I started to use my penis as a gear stick and I was pretending I was driving. Has anyone else here ever tired this?
#10
No I wouldn't recommend it for your situation. If you like blues/rock music an amp that you can drive the poweramp section is probably more desirable. You're not going to get a lot of money selling that amp, but it's an option.
Gear:

Squier Strat
Epiphone Explorer
Agile AL-3100

No AMP
#11
I'm going to keep it, I enjoy playing bass so I still have some use for it. And until I can afford a new cab, I could just use the 15'' as a cab. They made it easy to just detach the combo head from the cab. I can just hook my new head directly into the cab.
Quote by smirnoff_black
Have you ever done this before? It's freakin' sweet! Earlier today, I was bored as hell just laying on my bed. I had an erection, so I started to use my penis as a gear stick and I was pretending I was driving. Has anyone else here ever tired this?