#1
Hi folks, I would be very grateful if you could give me some advice on purchasing a new amp.

I recently started playing guitar seriously again after more then a decade of hardly playing at all. I've begun playing covers with a friend who plays acoustic guitar and after a lot of rehearsing we are hoping to play some small gigs in the near future, so I thought it was about time I bought something more gig worthy than the late eighties Peavey 110 I'm practising with right now.

My guitar is a late-eighties model Epiphone Sheraton, its actually the first guitar I ever bought when I was 16 and its outlasted all other contenders since. I recently upgraded the electronics and got a new nut and its playing beautifully now. I kept the stock pickups after much pondering and they sound a lot better with the new harness, the neck pickup is thick and meaty and good for soloing, the bridge pickup has a lighter countryish twang and the middle position is much more usable now and strikes a nice middle ground between the other two positions.

When I was younger my tastes were very much post-punk / New Wave / indie oriented. My favourite guitar players were people like Robert Smith of the Cure who has a very simple but effective melodic style, Joey Santiago, Richard Lloyd and Tom Verlaine of Television, Sean O'Hagan of Microdisney, Johnny Greenwood, people like that. When I played in bands I rarely played anything that wasn't saturated in Chorus, Delay and Overdrive (Boss pedals were my thing).

The thing is my style has somehow evolved in the interim while I was NOT playing, if that makes any sense. When I went back to guitar I found I had all these interesting clean tones which I never realised existed (when I was younger I always thought my rig sounded horrible with no effects). I'm much more interested now in exploring the tonal possibilities of the guitar without blanketing it in effects, and I want to develop my technique and knowledge more. The kind of music we're playing represents a cross section of our interests: Richard Thompson, Tom Waits, American Music Club, Go-Betweens, Dylan, REM, Nick Cave, Freedy Johnston, The Smiths, Neil Young.

My budget is around €600 / $850. I like the idea of a tube amp and I've browsed various sites for recommendations but it seems like the moment people start talking about tubes it always comes back to the search for some mythical "Cream / Stevie Ray Vaughan / vintage British sound" tone which is a world away from the kind of music I like and play. I would like some opinion therefore on what kind of amps might work well for me.
#2
to start things off i am not too familiar with a lot of your bands however i really think that you can get some great, and clean tones (especially with your sheraton) through a vox ac15c1 (greenback). if you could check the used market you might be able to save yourself some bread. Very good amp! At least check into it
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#3
Bugera V22/55 combo it will do nice cleans and has a diecent dirty ch., not a metal amp, more of a Fender type sound.
Bugera BC-30 may also be a goo choice.

You can get Vox AC 15's pretty cheap used and they are awesome amp.
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#4
Thanks for the suggestions guys, much appreciated. The Vox looks very nice and is within my budget. How much clean headroom would I have with the AC15, enough for a noisy bar without micing it up, bearing in mind I wouldn't have to compete against a drummer?
#5
Quote by eferone
Thanks for the suggestions guys, much appreciated. The Vox looks very nice and is within my budget. How much clean headroom would I have with the AC15, enough for a noisy bar without micing it up, bearing in mind I wouldn't have to compete against a drummer?

If you want clean headroom, then go for an AC30. They're fairly different tonality wise though however, but still can deliver the classic AC crunch.

Though any good bar/pub should have some kind of PA system, in which case you'll be able to mic up the amp.
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