#1
Hello everyone!
I have recently bought a Fender Am.Std Strat, and I am looking forward to buy a new amp, because single-coils on my strat are rather low-output, and my VOX AC4 isn't capable of heavy distortion.

I need:

1. A tube amp. I'm not a fan of digital modelling. I need pure high-gain distortion with no effects.

2. Low-wattage amp, because the walls in my house are probably built from paper, and my neighbours get very annoyed if I play too loud. So 25W MAX, even better if the amp has an attenuator.

3. I prefer Mesa, Peavey, and maybe Marshall amps. I will go used if needed, but would prefer a new amp.

4. Price range. The prices in my city are... high. For example, a new Mesa Express 5:25 1x12 costs 2500$ US. Line6 DT25 112 is 950$ US. I think you get the idea now. It is possible to buy a used Mesa Express 5:25 for 1000$ minimum, but I haven't spotted any offers yet. My budget is 1100$ at max, and it's important to take Russian price tags into account.
Thanks!
#2
Since you're in Europe, you'll probably be able to find something like a Laney GH100L or VH100R for not very much money.

There's also a guy on here who ships amps to Russia, but I dunno if he'll pop up in this thread.

You're going to want to change the bridge pickup in your Strat to a humbucker as well.
Quote by DeathByDestroyr
What the hell is a G&L.



Quote by Flux'D
Gay & Lesbian I think, the box smelled funny
Greg what did you send me??
#3
Those Laneys are 100 watt. Thats way too much.
Misha

Music Man Axis Super Sport
Diezel Einstein 100, Sparrow's Sons 2X12
#4
You can always turn it down, and trust me, 25 watts is not much quieter than 100. It's a little bit quieter, but not much, and you already know you can't crank an amp that's even 4 watts, if your walls are really paper thin. My friend's 15 watt Blues Junior can easily keep up with my 50 watt Valveking, volume-wise, it just breaks up faster.

Besides that, anything less than 50 watts isn't going to get you a proper high gain sound, if you ask me, unless you go custom (which I doubt you can do in Russia) Almost every 30w amp and below isn't aimed at high gain performance. Usually, they're marketed towards blues and classic rock players.

You could also look at the Laney GH50L if 50 watts is more comfortable to you than 100 watts. Brunetti is another European brand that you may find cheaper than Mesa, Peavey, etc.

Have you considered a rack-type rig? You could probably get an ENGL E530 preamp for a lot less than a full-blown amp, and I believe it has a headphone output.
Quote by DeathByDestroyr
What the hell is a G&L.



Quote by Flux'D
Gay & Lesbian I think, the box smelled funny
Greg what did you send me??
Last edited by Raijouta at Jan 25, 2012,
#5
I say this a lot. Wattage = headroom, NOT volume.

Generally it's actually easier to get a good tone at quiet volumes out of a 100 watt amp than it is out of a 20 watt amp. This is due to the fact that a great many high wattage amps are designed with preamp gain in mind making pushing the powertubes much less critical to your tone. HOWEVER, low wattage amps are designed to have their powertubes pushes so they actually have to be quite loud before they sound half decent.

There are definitely exceptions to this, but I haven't found many, especially if we're talking about high gain amps.

But as an example. I've got a 90watt Mesa Mark V. My friend has a Mesa Express 5:25. I can play my Mark V at 11 at night without bothering my gf who is sleeping in the next room. His Express can't even get close to that quiet before the tone goes all weird.

So don't rule out that Laney just yet. Try it, see if it can play quietly and sound good. That's why there's a volume knob
#6
What about the new Mesa mini rectifier?
-----------------------------------
G.A.S. Afflicted
#7
Quote by Raijouta

Have you considered a rack-type rig? You could probably get an ENGL E530 preamp for a lot less than a full-blown amp, and I believe it has a headphone output.

So I can connect Guitar>Rack Preamp>Cab? I have a 1x12 cab with a Celection Greenback.
I have always thought that it's impossible to connect a preamp to a cab or headphones.
Misha

Music Man Axis Super Sport
Diezel Einstein 100, Sparrow's Sons 2X12
#8
You would need a power amp to put it through a cab, but the ENGL E530 has a small 1w power amp in it for headphones.

The Mesa Mini Rectifier is worth considering as well, since it's 25 watts and rather high gain, but it may still be too expensive.
Quote by DeathByDestroyr
What the hell is a G&L.



Quote by Flux'D
Gay & Lesbian I think, the box smelled funny
Greg what did you send me??
#9
There is also the Engl GigMaster 310, only 15 W
-----------------------------------
G.A.S. Afflicted
#10
what kind of tone are you trying to get? i play SSS strats mostly and use a Peavey Valveking. i play stuff similar to 70s- early 80s hard rock and classic metal. the VK does really well for this type of stuff. as far as the gain goes i usually don't have it much above 4. strats pretty much maintain a certain degree of clarity even with high gain settings (this tends to put off the more modern metal fans) i think you'll find that unless you are going for a downtuned modern metal sound (in which case a pickup swap would be your first step) then you need less gain than you might think.
#12
Quote by francesco18
You could buy some distortion pedal like the Boss DS-1 to get a high gain sound at low volumes.


The DS1 sounds laughably bad compared to an ENGL, or a Mesa, or a Peavey.
Quote by DeathByDestroyr
What the hell is a G&L.



Quote by Flux'D
Gay & Lesbian I think, the box smelled funny
Greg what did you send me??
#14
Right now I am looking at the tech specs of a Mesa TriAxis. It is said that it has speaker simulation. What is it?
I generally like it, cause i like Mesa Mark tones. The only problem is to connect this thing to something that can produce sound. I don't know how to do that!
Misha

Music Man Axis Super Sport
Diezel Einstein 100, Sparrow's Sons 2X12
#15
You'll need a power amp and a cab in addition to the preamp.
Quote by DeathByDestroyr
What the hell is a G&L.



Quote by Flux'D
Gay & Lesbian I think, the box smelled funny
Greg what did you send me??
#16
Quote by Raijouta
You'll need a power amp and a cab in addition to the preamp.

Guitar > PreAmp > Power Amp > Cab?
Does the Pre-amp/power-amp combination cost more than just a head?
Misha

Music Man Axis Super Sport
Diezel Einstein 100, Sparrow's Sons 2X12
#17
That depends on what preamp and power amp you buy. They can cost a lot more, and they can cost a lot less.

I would bet you could find a good preamp and power amp together within your budget. The only issue may be finding a speaker cabinet.

Can you order from thomann.de in Russia?
Quote by DeathByDestroyr
What the hell is a G&L.



Quote by Flux'D
Gay & Lesbian I think, the box smelled funny
Greg what did you send me??
#18
Quote by Raijouta
That depends on what preamp and power amp you buy. They can cost a lot more, and they can cost a lot less.

I would bet you could find a good preamp and power amp together within your budget. The only issue may be finding a speaker cabinet.

Can you order from thomann.de in Russia?

I already have a cab, but it's not too powerful. 1x12 with 16 ohm Celestion Greenback. 25W max output, I'm afraid it will explode if I buy a 100 watt head, so a combo is the most preferrable.

No, unfortunately, I can't.
Misha

Music Man Axis Super Sport
Diezel Einstein 100, Sparrow's Sons 2X12
#19
25w cab? Then you might want to look at the Mesa Mini Rectifier. It's probably the best you can do with that wattage.
Quote by DeathByDestroyr
What the hell is a G&L.



Quote by Flux'D
Gay & Lesbian I think, the box smelled funny
Greg what did you send me??
#20
Quote by Raijouta
25w cab? Then you might want to look at the Mesa Mini Rectifier. It's probably the best you can do with that wattage.

This amp is perfect for me except for one thing: there are only 4 and 8 ohm outs, and my cab is 16 ohm. Everything about this amp but this stupid problem is just great. Is it possible to solve it?

What about a Marshall TSL401 combo? Its made in the UK and has a lot of knobs (unlike my vox ).
Misha

Music Man Axis Super Sport
Diezel Einstein 100, Sparrow's Sons 2X12
#21
The TSL401 might be cool. It's not as good as a DSL but it might be the best you can do on that budget.
Quote by DeathByDestroyr
What the hell is a G&L.



Quote by Flux'D
Gay & Lesbian I think, the box smelled funny
Greg what did you send me??
#22
Oh sorry, I was talking about DSL401!
Fortunately, I can listen to it at my nearby music shop, so I will visit it one day
Misha

Music Man Axis Super Sport
Diezel Einstein 100, Sparrow's Sons 2X12
#23
For high gain (low wattage heads):
ENGL E315 Gigmaster
Hughes & Kettner Tubemeister 18
Orange Dark Terror
Jet City JCA22H

The ENGL and the H&K sound great with single coils (search youtube videos).
Fender MIA Stratocaster (with SD Twang Banger)
Epiphone Les Paul Special II
Johnson Acoustic
Palmer FAB5