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#1
My DSL50 head isn't pushing my 1960A hard enough at lower volumes to to get any usable tones. I have to have my amp up to at least 3 before the amp really opens up. I'm thinking the high wattage handling on the speakers has something to do with this.

Maybe I could mod the cabinet so that only two of the speakers are operational? I have two Eminence The Governors in the cab that I would like to have operational. Disabling the G12T75s would probably be ideal for me.

Any ideas on how I could do it? I've got plenty of common sense so if I had some guidance on how to do the job I imagine I could get it done. Thanks
#2
you caould get the marshall stereo/mono jack plate and wire it up with that, esentually making it 2 2x12 cabs in 1
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#3
Someone correct me if I'm wrong, but your issue has nothing to do with your speakers, and everything to do with your amp. Your speakers don't control when your amp opens up or breaks up - all they do is project sound.

Maybe upgrade your output transformer, or get an attenuator?
Spin 'round carousel when your horse isn't screwed in.

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#4
it's not that your amp isn't pushing the cab hard enough, it's that your amp is just turned down too low to push the tubes. That's more than likely what it is

re-wiring your cab wouldn't be too hard, you'd just need to make sure you use the appropriate output on the head for the re-wired cab's new impedance.

What I think may benefit you most is getting an attenuator. Then you can turn your amp up, but turn the volume on the attenuator down so you get turned-up-amp-sounds at a lower volume
#5
Do you mean you are not getting enough power/gain from the amp, or the speakers are just flat?

If you want a wide open sound from a tube amp but at a lower volume, you need an attenuator. THD makes the HotPlate - those are probably the best you can get. Just make sure you match it up to your cab's impedance
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#6
Quote by Robbgnarly
you caould get the marshall stereo/mono jack plate and wire it up with that, esentually making it 2 2x12 cabs in 1


DOH! I already have one on my cab. I could just switch the cab into stereo mode and use the 8ohm out on my head. I feel silly now.
I'll need to make a quick mod to my amp to use the 8ohm out though. The DSL50 is known for having ground problems with the 4/8 ohm jacks. Id have to make a safety ground for those jacks.

To the others:

Well if my cab isn't the problem than that kinda sucks. How much would a good output transformer cost me after installation? Idk if I'm ready to put any more money into this amp.

Edit: Its not a matter of the tubes not being pushed I don't think. I could run my 100watt Peavey VK combo at volume 1 and get a not "flat" sound as I am now.
Last edited by Tyler.Allain at Jan 9, 2012,
#7
Quote by Offworld92
Someone correct me if I'm wrong, but your issue has nothing to do with your speakers, and everything to do with your amp. Your speakers don't control when your amp opens up or breaks up - all they do is project sound.

Maybe upgrade your output transformer, or get an attenuator?


you are right in the fact that you need to turn up the master knob in order to drive the power section.

but no one is considering that the TS may want speaker distortion. we ran the dsl 50 with a single G12M-25 for a quieter 'driven' tone, mind you that is a fairly sketchy setup that risks the speaker if you don't know what you're doing. but it achieve speaker breakup (or 'rounding') at quite lower volumes.

you might consider that you just might not be able to get loud enough to drive your output section of the amp or the speakers. when i lived in apartment, driving an amp appropriately was a pipedream.

you last choice is an 'isolation cabinet' (a speaker in a sealed box with a mic), i feel they do a better job than an attenuator
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
#8
Quote by Tyler.Allain
Well if my cab isn't the problem than that kinda sucks. How much would a good output transformer cost me after installation? Idk if I'm ready to put any more money into this amp.

Edit: Its not a matter of the tubes not being pushed I don't think. I could run my 100watt Peavey VK combo at volume 1 and get a not "flat" sound as I am now.


I would spend money on an attenuator before a new transformer.

Anyway, some amps need to be loud before they sound good. You also need to keep in mind that the VK is designed so that your gain is mostly coming from the preamp section where most Marshall amps are focused on power amp breakup.

You could also try pairing your Marshall up with a low wattage speaker cabinet. a 2x12 with greenbacks say.
#9
The issue has nothing to do with your speakers, tubes, or amp. It's your ears perceiving the tone as different because it is at a lower volume. The only difference in tone turning it up would make is if you were to turn it up far enough for the power tubes to start clipping, which is WAY up, nowhere around 3. In the case of a DSL most of the gain is coming from the preamp, so slight volume differences shouldn't affect the amp itself's tone.

The best thing to do is just try to tolerate the way the tone sounds at a lower volume, or use your Valveking for practice. Low-volume wanking doesn't require perfect tone. I strongly doubt an attenuator would help.
#10
You don't need an attenuator, or a new output transformer, or a new cab. Any of these things MAY improve your tone, but then again, they may not. As well, attenuators work best when your amp is already loud - the attenuator is simply to take the edge off of an amp at stage volumes. It is not a solution to give you stage tone in your bedroom.

As Cathbard put it, you don't need great tone in your bedroom any more than you need mood lighting to masturbate. It's always nice to have good tone, but it's really not necessary to do what you want to get done.

If you like how your VK sounds at vol 1 better than your DSL sounds at vol 1, then just use your VK (if you still have it). If not, you'll pretty much just have to deal with it.
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#11
^^ Have I started a meme?

Running the amp into one of the stereo inputs is your best bet. It probably won't help a lot, that's just how DSL's are. You gotta crank the suckers. My favourite tone out of a DSL is obtained by turning the master vol to 10 and using the preamp gain as your volume. I'm a bit of a Gary Moore freak and that's the way he ran them live - LOUD. Gotta be loud.
What I do with my big amps is play in 10 min sets. Then by the time the neighbours get pissed off and start thinking about calling the cops you've stopped. You can keep doing it all day if you leave a decent gap between sets.
Even if they do call the cops, the chances are that by the time they get there you've stopped and they may not even knock on your door. If they keep getting called to non-events eventually it's the neighbours that cop shit for wasting the cops time, not you for being a disturbance.
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#12
Quote by Ian_the_fox
The issue has nothing to do with your speakers, tubes, or amp. It's your ears perceiving the tone as different because it is at a lower volume. The only difference in tone turning it up would make is if you were to turn it up far enough for the power tubes to start clipping, which is WAY up, nowhere around 3. In the case of a DSL most of the gain is coming from the preamp, so slight volume differences shouldn't affect the amp itself's tone.


That's simply not true. Ok fine, as the volume increases the way we perceive sound changes, that is true. However the tone of an amp also changes fairly drastically as the volume increases even before you reach the point of the powertube breakup. The sound from the speakers change as they start to push more air, and the sound and feel of the amp will start to open up as the volume increases.

Quote by Raijouta
As Cathbard put it, you don't need great tone in your bedroom any more than you need mood lighting to masturbate. It's always nice to have good tone, but it's really not necessary to do what you want to get done.


Amusing but inaccurate. I think it would be more accurate to say; you don't need a woman to reach orgasm. It's always nice to have a woman around to help out, but your hand will do just fine...

Yeah, you can get the job done with bad tone, but it's not nearly as much fun and it's certainly not inspiring.

Back to the topic at hand...

There are lots of things you can try to beef up your tone at low volumes. Using a tube screamer as a boost can work wonders. An EQ pedal can also do a lot to thicken and fill your sound. You can also put a piece of plexiglass in front of your speakers to cut the volume, and throw a blanket over it to further cut your volume.
#13
i am planning to build an isocab when i get around to it. i swear i have the longest list of shit to do.

finish an amp that has been lying around. a few pickup swaps and one rewire, two pedals to fix, i have two 1x12" cabinets cut, and a few more cabinets (at least three 2x12"s).
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#14
one thing i have had minimal success at is EQ'ing a little differently. cut the mids a notch or two, and add in a little treble and bass (this is the ONLY situation i would advise cutting mids, and do NOT set at zero).

it doesn't make a whole lot of sense because yes the guitar is a mid range instrument, and you wouldn't want to lose that. you ears pick up the lows and highs somewhat differently at low volumes. i don't know why.

that is actually what the "loud" button does on an mp3 player or stereo.
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#15
Yeah, I have to boost the bass quite a lot on my JCM900 when playing quietly.
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#16
Lol, people act like cutting mids is a mortal sin.

Cut mids sound better at low volumes. Fact. Can we please stop demonizing it so much around here? It's perfectly understandable and good to advise against cutting in band situations, but it's so blown over the top here, we yell at anyone cutting mids for any reason. Ridiculous.

Also, I'll agree with icronic. No, you don't need good tone for practice. But why on earth wouldn't you want it? Practicing by yourself is the best time for you to really hear your tone.
Spin 'round carousel when your horse isn't screwed in.

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#17
Quote by Offworld92
Also, I'll agree with icronic. No, you don't need good tone for practice. But why on earth wouldn't you want it? Practicing by yourself is the best time for you to really hear your tone.
And when the tone matters least and is telling you the least. It may sound great on your own, then the drums and bass start and it all goes to hell in a bucket.

Says the man that plays a hand built 18W Marshall with carefully selected tubes from a collection through a boutique speaker at home.
Gilchrist custom
Yamaha SBG500
Telecasters
Randall RM100 & RM20
Marshall JTM45 clone
Marshall JCM900 4102 (modded)
Marshall 18W clone
Fender 5F1 Champ clone
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Marshall 1960A
Boss GT-100


Cathbard Amplification
My band
Last edited by Cathbard at Jan 10, 2012,
#18
Quote by Cathbard
And when the tone matters least and is telling you the least. It may sound great on your own, then the drums and bass start and it all goes to hell in a bucket.

Says the man that plays a hand built 18W Marshall with carefully selected tubes from a collection through a boutique speaker at home.


I'm not disagreeing you (I'd have to be an idiot to do that I guess I'm just saying, why does it have to be mutually exclusive? Obviously you use a different EQ/different settings at home than you do with the band.

Meh.

My Vypyr Tube sounds good at all volumes, so I don't even have a place in the conversation.
Spin 'round carousel when your horse isn't screwed in.

My band:
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(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
#19
Well, you try to make the most of what you've got I guess. You EQ it as good as you can and then live with it.
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
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#20
Quote by icronic
That's simply not true. Ok fine, as the volume increases the way we perceive sound changes, that is true. However the tone of an amp also changes fairly drastically as the volume increases even before you reach the point of the powertube breakup. The sound from the speakers change as they start to push more air, and the sound and feel of the amp will start to open up as the volume increases.
I used to think the same exact thing, until I proved myself wrong. One day I propped my 1x12 up on a desk hooked to my head, and I had earplugs in initially intending to find the perfect miking position. I found that when I had my amp on 4, it sounded the same as it did on 1, as it did on 6 as well. The only difference is that I had to back my head a bit further away from the speaker to get it to sound the same due to more of the speaker vibrating.

So yes, it is all in our minds, and the tone coming directly from the speaker is exactly the same at almost all volumes until the tubes are saturating.

Quote by Offworld92
Cut mids sound better at low volumes. Fact. Can we please stop demonizing it so much around here? It's perfectly understandable and good to advise against cutting in band situations, but it's so blown over the top here, we yell at anyone cutting mids for any reason. Ridiculous.
No. NEVER cut mids, under any circumstance. They do not sound better, cut mids simply make you sound stupid. The thing to do is just live with the mids at all volumes and get used to them, i.e. acquire a taste for them. Make friends with them.
#21
Quote by Ian_the_fox
I used to think the same exact thing, until I proved myself wrong. One day I propped my 1x12 up on a desk hooked to my head, and I had earplugs in initially intending to find the perfect miking position. I found that when I had my amp on 4, it sounded the same as it did on 1, as it did on 6 as well. The only difference is that I had to back my head a bit further away from the speaker to get it to sound the same due to more of the speaker vibrating.

So yes, it is all in our minds, and the tone coming directly from the speaker is exactly the same at almost all volumes until the tubes are saturating.


You're talking about close micing...

Put a speaker cab in an isolated room and stick a mic in the center of that room. Now obviously you'll have to adjust the input volume so your levels are as close as possible. But try your test then. It will not sound the same.

Or, hit an open E. Count how long it lasts. Turn up the volume do it again.

On one of my amps you can take it even further. On the lo gain crunch channel... at low bedroom volume it's quite compressed and grainy, pull back on your guitars volume and it just gets quiet and thin, but still compressed and grainy. Raise the volume up a touch, less compression, and it will start to clean up as you pull the guitar volume back. The more you turn it up the more apparent the effect is. Once you get it up to the point where the tubes start to clip then the amp begins to compress again but in a completely different manner.

No. NEVER cut mids, under any circumstance. They do not sound better, cut mids simply make you sound stupid. The thing to do is just live with the mids at all volumes and get used to them, i.e. acquire a taste for them. Make friends with them.


Don't be silly. It's perfectly acceptable to cut your mids at home if it makes your amp sound better to your ears. In fact I'd say on some amps you need to cut your mids at home to replicate certain tones (metal anyone?) in your own home playing by yourself. You simply need to be aware of the fact that the settings you use at home to achieve the sound you want are not at all the same as the ones you would use live or for recordings.

Generally speaking I'll find the tone I want to achieve at home, then try to replicate it live. At home I'll generally have my mids down to about 9-10:00 and my bass up at noon, yet to achieve a near identical tone with a band I turn the mids up to 12+ and the bass down to about 9-10. Completely different settings, but the tone remains the same.

It's also worth bearing in mind that some amps have huge amounts of midrange and you can afford to cut a fair chunk of them out even when playing live... EL34 amps tend to be very middy or any of Mesas Mark amps.
#22
Quote by icronic
You're talking about close micing...

Put a speaker cab in an isolated room and stick a mic in the center of that room. Now obviously you'll have to adjust the input volume so your levels are as close as possible. But try your test then. It will not sound the same.
.
Or, hit an open E. Count how long it lasts. Turn up the volume do it again.

On one of my amps you can take it even further. On the lo gain crunch channel... at low bedroom volume it's quite compressed and grainy, pull back on your guitars volume and it just gets quiet and thin, but still compressed and grainy. Raise the volume up a touch, less compression, and it will start to clean up as you pull the guitar volume back. The more you turn it up the more apparent the effect is. Once you get it up to the point where the tubes start to clip then the amp begins to compress again but in a completely different manner.
The first 2 things you described has to do with the sound reverberating. The tone itself, coming directly from the amp, doesn't change in the slightest, aside from the speakers moving more.

In the case of a DSL50, changing the volume from 1 to 3 should do practically nothing to the head's tone itself. The way you hear it? Yes.

Turning it up until it clips is a different thing, and that's at like 7 or 8. And doing that with anything over 30w you better have earplugs unless you want to go deaf early.
Last edited by Ian_the_fox at Jan 10, 2012,
#23
If you don't start to go deaf early you're doing it wrong.
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
#24
Quote by Ian_the_fox
The issue has nothing to do with your speakers, tubes, or amp. It's your ears perceiving the tone as different because it is at a lower volume. The only difference in tone turning it up would make is if you were to turn it up far enough for the power tubes to start clipping, which is WAY up, nowhere around 3. In the case of a DSL most of the gain is coming from the preamp, so slight volume differences shouldn't affect the amp itself's tone.

The best thing to do is just try to tolerate the way the tone sounds at a lower volume, or use your Valveking for practice. Low-volume wanking doesn't require perfect tone. I strongly doubt an attenuator would help.

Not true at all. What you're describing is the Fletcher-Munson curve and while that does apply here you can't claim it accounts for all the differences in sound. There are verifiable reasons why amps sound different across the entire range of their volume, not just when overdriving the tubes.

Stop talking out of your ass.
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#25
Quote by Ian_the_fox
And doing that with anything over 30w you better have earplugs unless you want to go deaf early.


Nonsense.

All other things being equal, there's no perceptible volume difference between a 30w amp and a 50w amp. (And damn little between an 18w and a 50w)

If 30w is too loud, so is 18...In point of fact an 18w can be louder than a 30 if it's plugged into more efficient speakers.

Wattage is to amps what horsepower is to cars, it sells 'em, but it really doesn't mean what most folks think it does.
“Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge.”
Charles Darwin
#27
Quote by Arby911
Nonsense.

All other things being equal, there's no perceptible volume difference between a 30w amp and a 50w amp. (And damn little between an 18w and a 50w)

If 30w is too loud, so is 18...In point of fact an 18w can be louder than a 30 if it's plugged into more efficient speakers.

Wattage is to amps what horsepower is to cars, it sells 'em, but it really doesn't mean what most folks think it does.


not even that much difference between 50 and 100.
Prs se Holcomb is the answer
#28
Quote by Raijouta
As Cathbard put it, you don't need great tone in your bedroom any more than you need mood lighting to masturbate.


Quite possibly the best line I have ever read on UG
2002 PRS CE22
2013 G&L ASAT Deluxe
2009 Epiphone G-400 (SH-4)
Marshall JCM2000 DSL100
Krank 1980 Jr 20watt
Krank Rev 4x12 (eminence V12)
GFS Greenie/Digitech Bad Monkey
Morley Bad Horsie 2
MXR Smart Gate
#29
Quote by tubetime86
Not true at all. What you're describing is the Fletcher-Munson curve and while that does apply here you can't claim it accounts for all the differences in sound. There are verifiable reasons why amps sound different across the entire range of their volume, not just when overdriving the tubes.

Stop talking out of your ass.


i was gonna type this response out. thx.

it is kinda outlandish to believe that sound equivalency is the sole culprit in how an amp sounds cranked vs. quiet. if that was the case, why did they ever bias an amp's tubes if they sound the same anywhere in their range of operation?

and btw guys, the fletcher munson effect was based on pure waveforms; complex waveforms with even and odd harmonic content don't have as drastic of a curve and also don't sit so easily on one section of a curve.

for example: the low E of the guitar might have a fundamental of ~80 Hz, but it's harmonic content includes sounds at ~160 Hz, ~240 Hz, ~320 Hz, etc. such sounds have a more complex interaction than the fletcher munson effect would lead to believe.

newer equivalency curves take complex noises into consideration. real examples of how your ear 'hears' the loudness of the guitar are not truely represented by fletcher munson curves, but they do give a nice approximation.
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
#30
Quote by tubetime86
Not true at all. What you're describing is the Fletcher-Munson curve and while that does apply here you can't claim it accounts for all the differences in sound. There are verifiable reasons why amps sound different across the entire range of their volume, not just when overdriving the tubes.

Stop talking out of your ass.
If you read my post right above (#21) you will find that my asscrack is welded shut. I have proven that aside from reverberation, room acoustics, or just simply "feeling" the amps low end, the amp itself's tone does not change at all. Period.

I used to play my Jet City only at 4 all the time thinking that playing it that loud was the only way to get a good sound (imagine how my family felt about that), then I took an arrow to the- I mean, then I proved that it was all just in my mind.
#31
well as long as your tubes start conducting class a/b it'll sound relatively the same until clipping or something.
Prs se Holcomb is the answer
#32
Things sound better louder. Bass is replicated better at higher volumes, more air is being pushed, more of the air around you is being filled. You like the way things sound loud, no speaker will change that, you probably can find a speaker that will suit you better at lower volumes.

At the volume of 3, this probably has nothing to do with power amp saturation.

All the cool kids cut their mids. You're missing out.
#33
Quote by beckyjc
All the cool kids cut their mids. You're missing out.
I wouldn't call the kids with Warlocks and Spiders who worship Syn Gates and Zacky Venegance the "cool kids", but that's just me.
#34
Quote by Ian_the_fox
the amp itself's tone does not change at all. Period.


it's not the idea i have a problem with, it's your conviction. the "Period" part is just not true. i can give you examples where an amp's circuit is designed to sound different as you turn up the volume knob (like my music man's high boost, the circuit is designed to be more effective at low volumes and less effective at high volumes).


your lack of leeway is frustrating. you claim and amp's tone doesn't change AT ALL, PERIOD when even our most hi-fi amps can't make that claim. there is even performance drift from component to component, there is no mechinism to even support this idea of 'perfect amplification'.

your sentiment is mostly right seeing as an optimal amp will designed to amplify input 'linearly'. most 'favorable' amp designs should act in predictable and fairly linear fashion within a certain range of operation because that has been the purpose of amp engineering. in other words: amps should sound fairly linear within particular ranges, but to claim that it is a PERFECTLY LINEAR response goes against the fundamentals of amp design.

the only 'perfectly linear' amp circuits i know of are featured in ideal examples in text books.
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
#35
Quote by Ian_the_fox
If you read my post right above (#21) you will find that my asscrack is welded shut. I have proven that aside from reverberation, room acoustics, or just simply "feeling" the amps low end, the amp itself's tone does not change at all. Period.

I used to play my Jet City only at 4 all the time thinking that playing it that loud was the only way to get a good sound (imagine how my family felt about that), then I took an arrow to the- I mean, then I proved that it was all just in my mind.


All in your mind... No... It's the way your ears perceive sound. Which is really the most important thing. So telling yourself it sounds the same when to your ears and the ears of everyone else around you it sounds completely different is nothing short of delusional.

Besides you've proven nothing other than saying you stuck your ear up to your speaker and didn't detect any change in tone regardless of the volume.

You want proof. Record the pure direct signal from your amp. Slowly boost the volume. Run recording through something that will display the frequencies. Note that they do not increase uniformly.
#36
Quote by icronic
You want proof. Record the pure direct signal from your amp. Slowly boost the volume. Run recording through something that will display the frequencies. Note that they do not increase uniformly.
Right, they don't. But that still follows with my test:

Quote by Ian_the_fox
The only difference is that I had to back my head a bit further away from the speaker to get it to sound the same
Yes, the frequencies will clearly change as the volume is boosted if the mic stays at the same distance, but if the mic were to be backed away at a similar ratio to the boosting volume, chances are the the chart would look similar from volume to volume, like how it acted in my test. I have yet to test that theory but I'll be recording guitars for some guys soon so I'll test it then and get back with the results.


But still, not being able to get a good low-volume sound out of a higher wattage amp that relies mostly on the preamp is ridiculous. It drives me up the wall when people say "I can't play my 6505 at home because I have to turn it to 5 to use it"- no you don't. I've gotten great tones from a 6505 at a ridiculously low volume, at least for bedroom wanking, as well as many others including the DSL and TSL. The tones didn't make my nads vibrate, but it was at least good enough tone for screwing around.
Last edited by Ian_the_fox at Jan 10, 2012,
#37
well the dsl doesn't sound good like ever.

but most good high wattage amps should sound pretty similar.

gotta turn the eq knobs and shiz.
Prs se Holcomb is the answer
#38
Quote by AcousticMirror
well the dsl doesn't sound good like ever.
Ever throw one out of an 8 story window? When it hits the ground it sounds pretty good.

And since it's in many pieces at that point, you can say it sounds good at a low "volume".
#39
Tried running my head into one of the stereo inputs. The 2 speakers stacked vertically on the left hand side of the cabinet were active. Tone still sounded weak below volume 3. Suppose I just need to deal with the fact that I can't play the amp below 3 and get great tone.

Sold my Valveking after I bought the DSL. Time for a small practice amp. Tiny Terror here I come.

Edit: Hey man! Don't be dissin my amp!
Last edited by Tyler.Allain at Jan 10, 2012,
#40
Quote by Tyler.Allain
Tried running my head into one of the stereo inputs. The 2 speakers stacked vertically on the left hand side of the cabinet were active. Tone still sounded weak below volume 3. Suppose I just need to deal with the fact that I can't play the amp below 3 and get great tone.

Sold my Valveking after I bought the DSL. Time for a small practice amp. Tiny Terror here I come.

Edit: Hey man! Don't be dissin my amp!

DSL is fine amp. Have you tried a tubescreamer type boost? I think you'd really be surprised. What kind of music are you playing mostly?
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