#1
First off, I should state that I know the difference in amp voicings when I hear them - that's not the issue.

The question I have is: What accounts for the differences in voicing?

The other day, I was in a music store and played on an Orange Tiny Terror hooked up to a 4X12 Orange cab. I set it for high gain and played 3 different guitars through it. While the guitars all sounded a bit different, the same overal tone characteristics were present - I really liked the tone - the British voicing that is. I could create this kind of droning, almost synth-like texture with my tremelo picking over chords.

Now, with my 6505+ (American voicing), the same characteristics are much harder to achieve - but I'm still in love with its tone. It has more of a punchy, brutal (for lack of a better term) tone. And no matter how I eq it, it doesn't sound sound "British." I honestly can't say I prefer one over the other - I enjoy both voicings.

So, would a 10-band eq like the one offered by MXR allow me to create a more "British" tone with my amp, or am I headed in the wrong direction? It would be sweet to have a pedal that could shape the tone into more of that voice, and still be able to go back to the "American" voicing for other stuff.

In a nutshell, I'm asking what makes an amp sound "British vs. American" if it's not the eq'ing? Thanks for your time!
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#2
Quote by KailM
The question I have is: What accounts for the differences in voicing?


the design of the circuit and the components that make up the circuit. plenty of time speaker choice has a big impact as well. component availability used to be a much bigger factor than it is today, but the real reason for different 'voicings' is because people use different parts.

the classic example is the Marshall JTM45, the first marshall amp. the amp that is THE amp you think about (along with the AC30) when 'british voicing' is mentioned. the JTM45 is nothing but a copy of Fender's 5F6-A bassman circuit (the tweed bassman circuit they used in ~'59). the first JTM-45 prototypes used american parts, but when they needed to make a production model they had to use part sources they had access to (or else their amps would be too expensive to sell). so the big difference between a 5F6-A bassman and a JTM-45 is the parts supplied (speakers, tubes, transformers) and some of these parts changed value (they didn't have the exact same value of cap or resistor so they used the closes british made equivalent)

a little dissapointing? sorry, not grand reason for the 'british' or 'american' voicing other than what parts were available to amp dealers in those regions at that time. IMO, classifying voicings is damn near useless. almost all electronics come out of china, most big production countries have access to a majority of parts around the world, and the whole 'voicing' thing is more a gimmick for selling amps than for conveying useful information. don't look into it too much.

Quote by KailM
In a nutshell, I'm asking what makes an amp sound "British vs. American" if it's not the eq'ing?


it's all about the parts and how you put them together.

and about the "if it's not the eq'ing?" thing... the 'Tone Stack' (EQ knobs) of an amp has a huge effect on it's tone. i am not just talking about where you set the knob, i am talking about the component and values chose to implement it serve a HUGE purpose in an amplifier. it is not fair to the complexity of what is going on in your tone stack to trivialize it with that statement. here is a taste

http://www.duncanamps.com/tsc/
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Last edited by gumbilicious at Dec 3, 2011,
#4
Okay, thanks for the responses. So the differences I'm hearing...can they be attributed to different EQ profiles? (And I'm talking about more than just bass, middle, treble - I'm talking about breaking it down further in to different frequency ranges of each).

Basically, what I'm asking is whether or not the two "voicings" are attainable on one amp?
Atmospheric dark metal w/ black and death metal influences:
(My Soundcloud page):

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#6
Quote by KailM
Okay, thanks for the responses. So the differences I'm hearing...can they be attributed to different EQ profiles?


ahh, you read the duncan thing huh? values in a tone stack and design of the tone stack are important, but that is just one factor. another factor brought up with the bassman/JTM45 thing is that the JTM45 had a closed back 4x12 cabinet while the bassman had a 4x10 open back cab; that also had a bit effect on the sound. i think the change in power tubes had less of an impact, but output transformer sources also played a pretty big role in their tones.

Quote by KailM
(And I'm talking about more than just bass, middle, treble - I'm talking about breaking it down further in to different frequency ranges of each).


not too sure what you mean here, but amps will have certain harmonic content and frequency response, but that doesn't capture it all either. different circuits also just 'react' differently, will have different resonances.

Quote by KailM
Basically, what I'm asking is whether or not the two "voicings" are attainable on one amp?


that depends on how discerning you are. i have software that has all kinds of german, american, and british amps emulated in it. evidently it even emulates speakers and cabinets and mics as well. you can get features like that in amps and modeling units. look into stuff like Line 6, i prefer the real thing though (who wouldn't)
punk isn't dead, it's always smelled that way.

"A perfection of means, and confusion of aims, seems to be our main problem."
-ae
#7
Quote by KailM
Okay, thanks for the responses. So the differences I'm hearing...can they be attributed to different EQ profiles? (And I'm talking about more than just bass, middle, treble - I'm talking about breaking it down further in to different frequency ranges of each).

Basically, what I'm asking is whether or not the two "voicings" are attainable on one amp?



I think you might be interested in this-



This is a (large) snap of the rear




As you can see, its got about 14 tubes, 6 of em power tubes.

Of which, 4 are 6L6GC and two are EL34.

You can use either type, or together, and assign to channels.

Its not exactly "british" voicing when you use the EL34's (it still sounds like a Recto, albeit a more british-y one) but this and the Egnater Renegade are probably the amps that should interest you- both can mix and amtch tubes.


You can do it on Bugera;s too, but you cant switch between tubes on them.
#8
^^Wow, is that a standard Dual Rec? I played on one once and didn't really care for it, but it looks like there's a ton of versatility.

So it's looking like the power tube type has a lot to do with the different sounds (EL34's vs 6L6's.) I believe my amp has 6L6's.

Also, on an almost unrelated note, somebody in another thread recommended that I change my V3 preamp tube (12AX7) to a higher quality tube - because that tube powers the effects loop, and it doesn't sound as good with the effects loop engaged.

My local shop carries Mesa 12AX7's; are they good tubes or should I look elsewhere?
Atmospheric dark metal w/ black and death metal influences:
(My Soundcloud page):

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#9
^

That is a Road King. Flagship of the Dual Rec series. You can run 6L6s and EL34s at the same time. You can't do that on a standard Rec that I am aware and it quite a bit different than a standard Dual Rec.

See if you can find an Egnater Renegade to play. Set one channel on 6L6 and the other on EL34 and everything else the same. Then switch back and forth. Yes - it can run both types of power tubes like the Road King and is over half the cost.

Don't buy Mesa tubes. Especially 12AX7s. I'd get a JJ, Tung Sol or JAN Phillips 5751 instead.
#10
^^Good to know, thanks. They want like $17 for a Mesa 12AX7 anyway, which seems a little steep since I've seen JJ's for around $10 online.

I might just have to check out a Road King. I'm not in the market anytime soon, but eventually, I'm planning to sell my 6505+ combo and get a nice 2 X 12 cab and a high-end head of some sort. I'm really interested in something that can do a variety of high-gain tones.
Atmospheric dark metal w/ black and death metal influences:
(My Soundcloud page):

Pestilential Flood
#11
Quote by KailM
^^Wow, is that a standard Dual Rec? I played on one once and didn't really care for it, but it looks like there's a ton of versatility.

So it's looking like the power tube type has a lot to do with the different sounds (EL34's vs 6L6's.) I believe my amp has 6L6's.

Also, on an almost unrelated note, somebody in another thread recommended that I change my V3 preamp tube (12AX7) to a higher quality tube - because that tube powers the effects loop, and it doesn't sound as good with the effects loop engaged.

My local shop carries Mesa 12AX7's; are they good tubes or should I look elsewhere?


No, the different sounds have everything to do with circuit design and speaker choice. Tubes are pretty much a superficial difference and unless your amp is cranked into power tube distortion, you're not going to hear a huge difference with different types of power tubes in the same amp.

Mesa 12AX7s are the same thing as the cheap Shuguangs and JJs, just rebranded. Changing your FX loop's driver/recovery tube isn't going to magically make the FX loop sound great.
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#12
.....and i thought my crate was cluttered
Quote by kangaxxter
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#13
Quote by EspTro
.....and i thought my crate was cluttered


E-peen:
Rhodes Gemini
Fryette Ultra Lead
Peavey 6505
THD Flexi 50

Gibson R0 Prototype
EBMM JP13 Rosewood
Fender CS Mary Kaye

WTLT

(512) Audio Engineering - Custom Pedal Builds, Mods and Repairs
#15
Mesa tubes are just rebadged (Sovteks iirc). You're better off with JJ's, at least you know what you are getting and a JJ will kick a Sovtek's arse all day long without raising a sweat.

And back to the OT. Careful EQ'ing can make an American amp sound more "British." The onlt thing it won't change is the way the tubes break up. The Bassman vs JTM45 is a classic case in point. The most dramatic difference between them is the tubes. The Bassman had a 12AY7 in V1, not a 12AX7 like the JTM. Also the Bassman had 5881 (a military 6L6) power tubes and the JTM45 had KT66. That made for a totally different character. The JTM45 breaks up far more easily and accounts for the majority of the famous Marshall crunch. An EQ can make up for a lot of the difference from things like the different transformers but it can't change the way the tubes breakup (well it can a little but only a little)
It's amazing how Marshally a Bassman can be made sound with a tube swap.
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Last edited by Cathbard at Dec 4, 2011,
#17
Quote by GS LEAD 5

This is a (large) snap of the rear




nerd it til it Hz.
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#18
Quote by mmolteratx


lol the back of the roadking has more knobs and switches then the front of the fortin xD

whats the back look like?

*EDIT* i could be wrong cause all the inputs and outputs might be throwing me off xD
Quote by kangaxxter
The only real answer to the SG vs Les Paul debate is to get a Flying V and laugh at all the suckers who don't have one.


Quote by Blompcube

if you embrace inaccurate intonation it can be quite arousing.


I <3 TWEED
#20
Quote by KailM
^^Wow, is that a standard Dual Rec? I played on one once and didn't really care for it, but it looks like there's a ton of versatility.

So it's looking like the power tube type has a lot to do with the different sounds (EL34's vs 6L6's.) I believe my amp has 6L6's.

Also, on an almost unrelated note, somebody in another thread recommended that I change my V3 preamp tube (12AX7) to a higher quality tube - because that tube powers the effects loop, and it doesn't sound as good with the effects loop engaged.

My local shop carries Mesa 12AX7's; are they good tubes or should I look elsewhere?


The RKII has the clean channel from the lonestar- much better than the standard Dual Rec. It also has an added second channel, for crunch.

The RKII is much darker and tighter than a regular rec. Its *the* recto to have. I want one
#21
Quote by mmolteratx
No, the different sounds have everything to do with circuit design and speaker choice. Tubes are pretty much a superficial difference and unless your amp is cranked into power tube distortion, you're not going to hear a huge difference with different types of power tubes in the same amp.

It might have been my mind playing tricks on me but I could hear the differences in the Renegade. I 'think' the circuit is the same for each channel. I do agree that the circuit and the speakers and even preamp tubes have more to do the tone and then power tubes.


v....don't confuse the issue
Last edited by 311ZOSOVHJH at Dec 4, 2011,