Poll: What amp would you choose?
Poll Options
View poll results: What amp would you choose?
Blackstar HT-5R combo
13 26%
Peavey Vypyre Tube 60 watt combo
21 42%
I'm an idiot for selling my JSX rig and moving to a new house which requires lower volumes
25 50%
Some other amp (please reply to this thread with a suggestion)
3 6%
Voters: 50.
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#1
I have an Ibanez S470 with EMG pickups.
My amp was a Peavey JSX (120 all tube) head with 6L6's in it, driving a Line 6 4x12 cab.
I was not running any additional pedals or effects whatsoever.

I played in a metal band with a sound similar to All That Remains, Killswitch Engage, Five Finger Death Punch. However I fully appreciate a clean bluesy thick luscious lead.
The gain on the JSX was beautiful with the hot EMG pickups. The bridge pickup played crisp and clear heavy gain driven rythems while the neck pickup played an incredibly full bluesy high gain leads.
The clean channel of the JSX with the hot neck pickup played an equally beautiful, bluesy, full, deep, lead sound.
I loved that sound and was nothing but pleased with it but I had to leave the band and in the process I sold my half-stack.

I want the same sound capabilities I had with that rig in a small quit practice amp.
After long and laborous hours spent online reading reviews and watching clips on you-tube I have narrowed my search to 2 amplifiers:

Blackstar HT-5R (combo)
Peavey Vypyre Tube 60 watt (combo)

I have a few requirements in my search:
1. It must have tubes.
2. It must have full tonal sound while played QUIETLY (bedroom volume).
3. It needs to sound similar to my prior JSX rig - tonally speaking.
4. It needs to be sturdy, durable, not just physically but internally electronically.


I played an Orange Tiny Terror combo at Guitar Center with an Ibanez guitar of some variety which had passive pickups and was NOT impressed. Perhaps I didn't let the tubes warm up enough, perhaps it was because the guitar had passive pickups which were not hot EMG's. I don't know, but the amp had a switch from 7 watts to 15 watts. I was testing it on 7 watts. The sound seriously lacked gain, it did not have an EQ. The high gain metal tone was no comparison to my JSX rig and the thick bluesy clean tone felt empty, lacking depth and warmth. AND the final nail in that coffin was it was too loud. It was way too loud. I could have used it jamming in some rock and roll band with an acoustic drum set. I was hoping if it turn the volume down it would keep the same gain but lower the volume of the output... no go. Turning down the volume lowered the tube drive with it.

I played the Peavey Vypyre Tube 60 watt combo also at Guitar Center with that same Ibanez guitar. I am not one for affects. Maybe some Reverb if it comes with the amp but chorus and flange and delay and all that stuff will likely never be used. So when I jammed with it I chose the JSX amp model setting. I played it at low volume and I was blown away that it sounded MUCH like my prior JSX rig. I was loving the sound. The tubs in the amp really gave it the ability to match nearly exactly the sound of my prior rig. I also tried the Krankenstien setting which seemed to also have a lot to offer. Then I tried finding a good warm bluesy clean sound but couldn't come up with one. I was really disappointed. In additional to my disappointment, the Rep at Guitar Center said the "front end" of the amp wasn't very reliable and they offer a 3 year additional full blown warrenty (breaks, spills all that) but they would not cover it for more than those 3 years. He said after the 3 years he wouldn't expect it to last too much longer without getting jittery or weird, as it is a computer inside. And we all know a computer only lasts a handful of years before it starts acting odd. Hard-drive dies, motherboard dies, ram dies, huge software crashes. The same failures make digital amps unreliable for an extended period of time.

The Blackstar was not available for trying out at Guitar Center, or anywhere else local to me for that matter, so I've only heard it on YouTube and I can't accept that for judgement of it's real sound -as I do some recording myself- the fact that someone else recorded it adds a whole new set of variables to the sound. The Rep at Guitar Center told me the Blackstar HT-5R would be much like the Orange Tiny Terror in it's high volume. But I've read a review somewhere in which someone said the main volume on the HT-5R will lower the volume without cutting the gain. That sounds sort of like my JSX which I was able to play at lower volumes without cutting the gain. I also imagine the HT-5R will be so much more durable than a modeling amp. My JSX was a tank, accidentally knocked it backwards off the speaker cab once while it was powered up, it fell back onto the floor, but did not fail me in any way whatsoever. I cursed myself for knocking it off, but it still worked perfectly well.


A few questions: Does the main volume control on the HT-5R have the ability to cut the volume without cutting the tone and the gain? Can it be played at very low volumes while maintaining high gain? Does the HT-5R have enough gain to stand up to a hot JSX? Will a boost pedal makeup any lack in gain? Can someone recommend a very good quality boost pedal for that purpose? Does the clean sound full thick and bluesy with a hot EMG neck pickup?

Does the Vypyre have the clean sound I'm looking for? Is it more reliable than my computer? Is it as electronically as reliable as a tube amp?

I would like to bring my own guitar in and try it out on the Vypyre but I have been so busy with a few house remodels, I just can't find the time at the moment. I also don't have the ability to hear the HT-5R because no-one carries it locally.

Does anyone have advice, experience, helpful input?

Thanks!
#3
The HT-5 is a toy, get the Vyper tube.
Gilchrist custom
Yamaha SBG500
Telecasters
Randall RM100 & RM20
Marshall JTM45 clone
Marshall JCM900 4102 (modded)
Marshall 18W clone
Fender 5F1 Champ clone
Atomic Amplifire
Marshall 1960A
Boss GT-100


Cathbard Amplification
My band
#4
I have a Vyper tube 60 and I love the thing, I have replaced the tubes and speaker with higher quality parts and I love this thing more and more everyday. I hear the HT-5R is a bit lacking in the tone department, I haven't heard it in person but I was considering buying it for portability so I can't really speak for it.

While it is true that digital amps do have a shorter life expectancy due to have essentially a computer running everything if you treat it well (just like a computer) there is not reason that it wont last at least 7-8 years. Computers are generally badly and not taken care they are very fragile things, people assume that because they just sit there everyday of the year they don't need regular maintenance and then complain when something breaks. My computer has been going for 7 years now and outside of a Video card swap and more RAM everything in it is stock.

I don't play anything really blue's but even after having the amp for a year I'm still pulling sounds and tone out of it that I never knew I could, if anything I would say this is the biggest flaw of the amp. I may fiddle with it over the next few days and see what I can get, it has some pretty decent cleans so it shouldn't be to hard to get a good blues tone out of it.
#7
Not sure if serious.

What Cathbard said. The HT is a toy.
Spin 'round carousel when your horse isn't screwed in.

My band:
Fractured Instinct
(For fans of Death/Groove/Prog Metal)

Ibanez RGA42E
Ibanez S420
LTD H-301
Ibanez RG520
Peavey Predator USA
Douglas Grendel 725
Line 6 Pod HD500X
#9
Quote by metal from with

I played the Peavey Vypyre Tube 60 at low volume and I was blown away that it sounded MUCH like my prior JSX rig. I was loving the sound. The tubs in the amp really gave it the ability to match nearly exactly the sound of my prior rig. I also tried the Krankenstien setting which seemed to also have a lot to offer. Then I tried finding a good warm bluesy clean sound but couldn't come up with one. I was really disappointed. In additional to my disappointment,
Does anyone have advice, experience, helpful input?

Thanks!

I own a 60. The Vypyrs are more geared toward metal no doubt. The 'front end' issues are often fixed with getting the latest patch. You said it sounds very close to your old rig - which is a plus. For lower/mid gain tones you may be better suited with something like a Valvetronix or a Mustang. For high gain tones, in this amp budget range, nothing can touch the Vypyr. I have a couple of 'blues'ish' clips in my profile. 'Twin' and 'Bad Cat' maybe. 'Deluxe' was acoustic and low gain.
#10
The HT-5 is honestly a joke.

And I bought into all the bullshit of it too. Bought one brand new quite awhile back. Liked it at first, and then started to slowly dislike it.. Until I completely hated it.

Seriously is not that great. It can do some things.. But it's not versatile by any means.

Vypyr 60 kicks ass. It's one of the best things i've ever played, and even my SS 75 version is amazing.

There's not even competition here

EDIT: wow beaten to it by every post.
#11
Baron Snott Watt.
I wondered why the frisbee was getting bigger, then it hit me.
#13
Thank you everyone, for your responses.

Considering all of the input it looks like I'll go for the Vypyre. Probably a line conditioner too to try to help it's electronics lifespan.

So the HT-5R is a toy? I guess I was fooled by the advertisement. Has no-one had good heavey-metal luck with it, even with a gain boost pedal?

I knew the JSX had a master volume and perhaps I should have held onto it, but I was leaving the band and I sold the rig to the new guitarist (a good friend) so the band could retain the same tonal sound.

(BigHeadClan) - out of curiosity what tube and speaker did you put in your Vypyre? In what ways did it change the sound in your opinion?
#14
I think the tubes where swapped with a Tungsten(not 100% I will have to check), the change was a few months ago so I can't recall off the top of my head. After the change I would say it sounded darker but it also seemed more aggressive...If that makes any sense lol

As for the speaker swap, I just did last week and I used a Celestion Vintage 30 so it still has some breaking in to do.

A few things that stood out for me after I did the initial break-in, my bass dropped a bit but that is no biggy I never crank my bass past 3/4 anyhow so I have plenty of extra. Both chords and single notes come out much clearer when I have the amp set on a high-gain channel (JSX,6505 ect). There also may have been a slight volume drop, I'm not 100% sure on this but if there was it just means I get to up the volume a bit more. I rarely go past 3-4 and it tops out at 13 so that means I just get to drive my tubes harder lol.

None of these changes has knocked me on my butt in awe, but for what I got out of it I think it was well worth what I spent.
#15
I think the stock tubes and the stock speaker suit the amp fine. I can't imagine coloring the tone with a different speaker. Especially a Vintage 30. Slight bass and volume drops do not sound attractive to me at all.
#16
Quote by metal from with
Thank you everyone, for your responses.

Considering all of the input it looks like I'll go for the Vypyre. Probably a line conditioner too to try to help it's electronics lifespan.

So the HT-5R is a toy? I guess I was fooled by the advertisement. Has no-one had good heavey-metal luck with it, even with a gain boost pedal?

I knew the JSX had a master volume and perhaps I should have held onto it, but I was leaving the band and I sold the rig to the new guitarist (a good friend) so the band could retain the same tonal sound.

(BigHeadClan) - out of curiosity what tube and speaker did you put in your Vypyre? In what ways did it change the sound in your opinion?

The HT-5 can do like 80's Metallica-esque thrash metal. And that's pretty much with a boost. At least IMO that's as far as it'll go.

It will not do modern metal, djent, etc. Don't expect anything more than classic rock, some hard rock, and borderline thrash/80's metal. Clean channel is meh. Maybe with a delay and chorus it could be nice.
#17
Not sure if you are interested in an orange after your experience but I truly love them. The tiny terror just doesnt have the gain that you want, but you should try their dark terror if you get the chance. It has more gain than the tiny terror and should suit you a little better. Also believe it has a darker voicing but could be wrong.
#18
Quote by 311ZOSOVHJH
I think the stock tubes and the stock speaker suit the amp fine. I can't imagine coloring the tone with a different speaker. Especially a Vintage 30. Slight bass and volume drops do not sound attractive to me at all.



I'm going to keep this short (because I totally beefed and closed the tab I was writing this in just as I was finishing it )

Yes both the stock tubes/speaker where more then enough for the amp especially when you look at some of the other models in the vyper line up.

Most British Amp makers use celestion in there speakers, so by going with a speaker like that I would only be getting close to that British tone. I was torn between and eminence(governor) and celestion, either would have been fine but in the end I settled on the celestion. It was a near thing though

My tubes I had to change out anyhow since one of them died, so why not spend a few bucks and get better tubes even if it gets me only a slight improvement.

The slight volume/bass drop is a mute point for me because with a small adjustment to both knobs I can't even tell the difference from before. To me it sounds better and now stands out from other Vyper 60's, so for what I paid I'm plenty happy with these results!
Last edited by BigHeadClan at Nov 14, 2011,
#19
^ I'm glad you were happy with your results. In the end, for you, that is all that really matters. All I was saying is that I don't think the changes are that important than they are with say something like a Peavey Valveking. I don't want people to think they have to get a new speaker or tubes in order for the Vypyr 60 to sound good.

Replacing tubes because one died is one thing. The Vypyrs have speaker/cab modeling built into their amp models I believe. Therefore, what I was saying is that if youare going to swap the speaker (which I don't even think is necessary) - get a transparent one, like a Celestion Classic Lead 80.




any who...carry on
#20
^Ha for sure if I had a valveking it would have been a very noticeable difference, but I'm not sure about the amp models replicating speaker/cabs. I know they used a flatter response speaker (similar to one you would find in your stereo) to give the amp a good balance so it can better emulate it's wide selection.

I have my old speaker (it works so I wont toss, always good to have a spare), and if need be I can drop the Vintage 30 into a cab or a 1x12 combo with sub-par speaker and get better results. So I can always re-purpose the speaker down the road if the opportunity arises.

I gave the Lead 80 a listen and it didn't really awe me, I settled on the vintage 30 because it does great as an all-around speaker I play very different styles and I like how it sounded.
#21
yeah the V30 is a good all-around speaker

I think it would be interesting to put the Vypyr 12" speaker in a 112 cab and compare/contrast that with the replacement speaker in the combo

I'm not sure on the Vypyr speaker/cab emulating thing - I need to research that more.
#22
For blues, I really like any of the Fender models or Marshall voiced amps with the Tubescreamer effect added. Adds some nice crunch to it. I usually use it when soloing over clean passages . I usually use it on the green channel though. Some may prefer it on the red.
#23
That would be an interesting comparison, might have to see about getting myself a 1x12 cab from a buddy XD
#25
Quote by pugachev
HT-5 probably isn't for you, but dont be fooled, it is no toy...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_UGyfsvQKCA

Exactly how did that video prove that a HT-5 isn't a toy? Toys can be fuzzy too you know? Is an Easybake oven not a toy because it gets hot? Perhaps we have different definitions of the word toy.
Gilchrist custom
Yamaha SBG500
Telecasters
Randall RM100 & RM20
Marshall JTM45 clone
Marshall JCM900 4102 (modded)
Marshall 18W clone
Fender 5F1 Champ clone
Atomic Amplifire
Marshall 1960A
Boss GT-100


Cathbard Amplification
My band
#26
Quote by Cathbard
Exactly how did that video prove that a HT-5 isn't a toy? Toys can be fuzzy too you know? Is an Easybake oven not a toy because it gets hot? Perhaps we have different definitions of the word toy.


Sounds great to me, that's all I care.
#27
I just purchased from G.C. today, the Peavey 60watt tube Vypyre, and I have no regrets. As I no longer play in the band, it seems to suit my needs very well. I also played a used Blackstar HT Soloest 60, which almost tempted me, but it didn't have as much gain and drive as I was after, and the clean channel surprisingly didn't pull off as much warmth as I was expecting.

At any rate, I would like to thank everyone for their assistance and input as you all have really changed my mind as I was originally thinking more the Blackstar HT5, but am very happy I went with the Peavey Vypyre at this point.

Thanks!
#28
Congrats on the new amp.
I wondered why the frisbee was getting bigger, then it hit me.
#30
its nice to see somebody used the forum (collectively) take the advice and be happy.

it seems all too often that people respond to the OP dozens of times and they go with that they thought prior to the thread against the advice of the people on here and get it regardless and dont like it and come on here again. and waste money in quite a few of cases.

HNGD!
WTLT 2014 GG&A

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youre just being a jerk man.



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#31
Quote by metal from with
I just purchased from G.C. today, the Peavey 60watt tube Vypyre, and I have no regrets. As I no longer play in the band, it seems to suit my needs very well. I also played a used Blackstar HT Soloest 60, which almost tempted me, but it didn't have as much gain and drive as I was after, and the clean channel surprisingly didn't pull off as much warmth as I was expecting.

At any rate, I would like to thank everyone for their assistance and input as you all have really changed my mind as I was originally thinking more the Blackstar HT5, but am very happy I went with the Peavey Vypyre at this point.

Thanks!





NAD ploix
#32
Welcome to the club
Spin 'round carousel when your horse isn't screwed in.

My band:
Fractured Instinct
(For fans of Death/Groove/Prog Metal)

Ibanez RGA42E
Ibanez S420
LTD H-301
Ibanez RG520
Peavey Predator USA
Douglas Grendel 725
Line 6 Pod HD500X
#33
I was going to suggest trying a Dark Terror, but seeing as you bought a Vypyr, congrats. I hope you got what you were looking for.
#34
I have an ht-5 and it is an amazing amp. Im not a complete tone freak like 99% of the fags on this site but I do care about sounding good and thats what the ht-5 does.
#38
Quote by AcousticMirror
your amp is terrible.

Cool story bro. Wanna tell it again?
#39
Quote by notaspy2009
I have an ht-5 and it is an amazing amp. Im not a complete tone freak like 99% of the fags on this site but I do care about sounding good and thats what the ht-5 does.

mine had no balls.


and by balls, i mean bass response.
I wondered why the frisbee was getting bigger, then it hit me.
#40
Quote by notaspy2009
Im not a complete tone freak like 99% of the fags on this site but I do care about sounding good


You do realize that that is an oxymoron, right?
Spin 'round carousel when your horse isn't screwed in.

My band:
Fractured Instinct
(For fans of Death/Groove/Prog Metal)

Ibanez RGA42E
Ibanez S420
LTD H-301
Ibanez RG520
Peavey Predator USA
Douglas Grendel 725
Line 6 Pod HD500X
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