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#1
Hey guys,

I've been trying to find a good tube amp that would fit my musical tastes but it seems that the only amps worth looking into are expensive bootique amps or those who have been out of production for 40 years.
My biggest problem is that there isn't a single guitar store near my location that would allow me to give these amps a try
And if I do find an amp that looks nice there are a hundret million fricking people on the internet that complain about it's build quality or that it does not sound like the original one from 19XX.

I really love rock and metal (Mastodon, Led Zepplin, Black Sabbath, Metallica, Clutch, ZZ top, Pink Floyd, Neurosis, Corrosion of Conformity, Kyuss, CCR...) but even more so I looooove blues and blues inspired rock (Clapton, Stevie Ray Vaughn, BB King, Albert King, Rory Gallagher, John Lee Hooker, Jimi Hendrix, Muddy Waters and so on).

I am pretty much set on the metal side of things since I aquired a mesa studio pre for 150 €. I just have to change its tranny and some of the potentiometers and it's pretty much all I need for a heavy tone.

But I can't seem to find an amp for Blues/Rock tones.

The first idea that I had was to get a DRRI. I have a strat and it seems to be a very nice blues amp. Easy to crank up and beautiful cleans.
But then I heard people bitch and complain about the build quality and its inferior sound wich kind of ruind every reissue amp from fender for me. It seems to be that only some of the handwired amps are worth their price of admission (a price I can't possibly pay).

Then, since I love Hendrix and Clapton (especially his Les Paul/Marshall tone) I thought about getting a Marshall. But it seems like people bitch about their reisues just as well.


The last two amps that I listened to were the fender blues junior and the orange rockerverb 50 MkII.

The BJ (hehe^^) paired with a strat seems to be a very nice solution to my problem. Again, nice fender cleans and sounds wonderful when cranked.
What really made me fall in love with this amp was this video right here:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fFL6YtZxp9M

But then again, I heard a lot of people bitch and moan about the build quality. And apparantly the amp runs a little bit to hot.
Now here is my first question (FINALLY :-D). I already looked into the many mods availabe for the BJ and the Bias problem could be fixed pretty easily.
But I wouldn't want the sound to change and the only videos I found from modded BJs sounded harsh and steril.
Does anyone know if the Bias mod has a huge effect on the tone itself and should I do it if I buy the little amp?

Now to the orange rockerverb.
That thing really looks like a nice amp. I only looked into this one since the Blues Junior seems to have some design issues.

Is it possible to get the
Clapton - Sunshine of your Love
Clapton - Crossroads
Pink Floyd - Echoes
Stevie Ray Vaughn - Little Wing
SRV - Voodoo Chile
Led Zepplin - Whole lotta Love
ZZ Top - Tush

tone out of that thing.
I've read a lot of reviews that referenced one or more of these songs and I am a bit skeptical that one amp could achieve all of that.
Especially the Claptone tones seems highly unlikely to me since I never associated Orange with a Claptone tone.

Could anyone tell me if this amp could be the anwser to my problems or are there better alternatives
Last edited by lrt75914 at Jan 26, 2012,
#2
What you really need is a Hiwatt
Quote by JD Close
Piano dick had some good parts, but should have said "As the business man slowly gets boned", would have accented the whole dick feeling of the album
#3
How much can you spend? I swear by my Pritchard Black Dagger, as it emulates (analog-based, not digital modeling) Fender, Marshall and Vox amps beautifully... and although SS, it sounds tube (I've retired three tube amps in my collection and use this exclusively). However, it's 2k.
#4
Just find an amp that YOU like, screw everyone else.
EDIT: Do you have a price range?
Quote by JD Close
Piano dick had some good parts, but should have said "As the business man slowly gets boned", would have accented the whole dick feeling of the album
Last edited by Most_Triumphant at Jan 26, 2012,
#5
Quote by Most_Triumphant
Just find an amp that YOU like, screw everyone else.


This. Thisx10000000
Kodiak bears make awesome bandmates.

Quote by wolvenrick
no seriously 7x NGD is epicness i declare you the winner of all NGD's on UG never have i seen this xD
#6
Ah sorry. Forgot my Budget :-D

Right now it's only 500 € (hence why I looked into the blues junior).
But I will be able to work a little bit when this semester is over so that'll raise my budget to approximately 1500€ (hence the rockerverb). :-D


@ Most_Triumphant

I thought Hiwatts were only clean amps? Wouldn't I need a a lot of new pedals then?

And I am all for screwing everyone else :-D
Just not when it comes to build quality. I don't want to spend a butload of cash for a crappy product.


Oh and another thing...a master volume would be nice ^^

But thank you for your replies!
Last edited by lrt75914 at Jan 26, 2012,
#7
What you need is a new amp.


Oh, wait...
GEAR:
Epiphone Les Paul Studio Deluxe
ESP LTD EX-360
Peavey VYPYR 30W

"There's nothing constant in the universe.
All ebb and flow, and every shape that's born,
bears in it's womb, the seeds of change".
#8
Quote by Maillouxlp18
What you need is a new amp.

....

Oh, wait...



I kinda had the same feeling
Last edited by lrt75914 at Jan 26, 2012,
#9
Whelp, can't really recommend anything more than this.

http://www.miamplification.com/ID.htm

AU$1799 (~1300 euro) shipped anywhere in the world, 14 day trial period. Could be a serious contender for you against the Orange. That said, nothing wrong with the Rockerverb at all, great amps.
#10
Ceriatone makes PTP clones of old Marshalls, Fenders, Hiwatts, Dumbles... Pretty decent prices too. No crappy circuit boards. I bought a JTM-45 from them and plan on getting a Champ or Princeton along with an 18 watt Marshall in the future.
#11
Quote by lrt75914

@ Most_Triumphant

I thought Hiwatts were only clean amps? Wouldn't I need a a lot of new pedals then?


Naw, they can get some dirt, but yes you would need some dirt pedals.
Quote by JD Close
Piano dick had some good parts, but should have said "As the business man slowly gets boned", would have accented the whole dick feeling of the album
#12
Gigging? And what country?
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
Last edited by Cathbard at Jan 26, 2012,
#13
Quote by Cathbard
Gigging? And what country?


Gigging is out of the question right now since I spent most of my time learning for any number of exams.
But if I am done with my bachelor thesis I would like to take it on the road.
That's why the master volume thing is somewhat important to me :-D

I live in Germany...so a Mesa is out of the question (I heard the Lonestar has some really nice clean tones).


Keep in mind that this will be my first real tube amp. I am currently playing on a Fender Mustang I (talk about crapy quality) and this thing just got to go....
#14
700 € and it's yours - delivered to your door.

http://cathbard.com/jack-daniels-marshall3.html

I guarantee you won't be complaining about build quality. And you don't need a Master volume. A simple overdrive pedal in front of it and it will do everything you want. You'll want to get a road case for it though.
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
Last edited by Cathbard at Jan 26, 2012,
#16
Do you have any videos of that amp?

I looks really intriguing...'though I don't like Jack Daniels :-D
This is a Plexi Clone, right?
#17
Quote by lrt75914
Do you have any videos of that amp?

I looks really intriguing...'though I don't like Jack Daniels :-D
This is a Plexi Clone, right?


It's a Marshall 1974X clone, which is an 18w version of a Plexi.
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
No videos sorry. I do have a slapped up audio clip but it doesn't really do the amp justice. It sounds a lot better in real life. I haven't sorted out my recording setup properly. But here it is anyway:
http://cathbard.com/files/gully-boogie1.wav


Yeah, it's an 18W plexi clone from the 60's.


PS: Doesn't matter if you don't like JD. It's a piece of artwork making a statement about whiskey swilling bluesmen.
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
Last edited by Cathbard at Jan 26, 2012,
#19
That JD tin amp is hand built and personally tested by the builder. It will do everything you need and then some.

Just buy it!
“Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge.”
Charles Darwin
#21
I want one of those JD tin amps so damn bad. At that price it may not take me too long either.

(I'll just put it on a high interest credit card and make only the minimum payments. )
Quote by Cathbard
Quote by Raijouta
Unless its electronic drums.

BURN THE WITCH!!!!!
#22
Quote by tubetime86
I want one of those JD tin amps so damn bad. At that price it may not take me too long either.

(I'll just put it on a high interest credit card and make only the minimum payments. )


That's an in joke guys.

And it's true, I'm not making much profit on these at all. I'm probably working for about 50c per hour. I make them for the love of art and building amps, not profit.
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
#23
Just get a Ceriatone JTM-45.

This is my Metroamp JTM-45, sounds good for most of what you are looking to do...
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t924WRS4y14

Get the Ceriatone and a 2x12 Bluesbreaker combo cabinet.

One amp isn't going to get you all the sounds that you listed. That said, personally, I'm not a big fan of Orange amps. They're too dark and wooly sounding to me, they're cool I guess, but they just have too much of a distinct character in my opinion to be useful for a lot of things.
Last edited by al112987 at Jan 26, 2012,
#24
^^ If that's the case, I'll give you the price of parts and a couple jars of Vegemite. Deal?
Hi, I'm Peter
#25
Quote by Dirk Gently
^^ If that's the case, I'll give you the price of parts and a couple jars of Vegemite. Deal?

At that price it almost is that anyway. Almost every part in that amp has been sourced overseas so they cost me quite a bit to build. Freight on things like transformers aint cheap.


Anyway, I must hit the sack, it's almost 6am. If you decide you want that amp use the contact button on the page I linked you to.

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
Last edited by Cathbard at Jan 26, 2012,
#26
How would a Strat sound through that amp?
Would you be able to get some nice cleans out of that amp?

Clapton did use a Super Lead when he played in Cream, right?
How different are the tones between these two?
#27
I think Clapton used a Marshall Super 100 (JTM45/100) with Cream. It's also the same amp that Jimi Hendrix used at the Monterrey Pop Festival so if you're curious as to what sounds like with a strat...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mcq9lHlpoqc

It's distinctly different from the Super Lead. It's a super sized JTM45. Same preamp, but slightly different power supply with a SS rectifier instead of a tube rectifier like the original, and a bigger output stage with 4 KT-66 tubes instead of two. I think the actual amp puts out a little less than 100 watts. Definitely not as powerful or as loud as a Super Lead.
Last edited by al112987 at Jan 26, 2012,
#28
Strat sounds great through it. You can pull Plexi tones similar to a Super Lead out of it pretty easily.
With an overdrive and a reverb in front of it it pulls a a remarkable Gary Moore tone. I spun out a friend of mine who is a Gary Moore freak the other day. All I had in front of it was a tubescreamer and a Picoverb. He couldn't believe that such a simple setup could sound so close to the king of tone. It'll do Foxy Lady too.
If you want a low powered Plexi the 18W Marshall circuit is THE circuit to have. I don't think anybody that knows their shit would argue that point. That's why I build them. I'd have to say that it sounds more like a JTM45 than Super Lead though.
You'll love it and you can be certain that nobody you know has anything like 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
My band
Last edited by Cathbard at Jan 26, 2012,
#29
You need to get the tube amp that You like..and then improve on that theme! And being a old rocker/blues player myself,I can relate to what your trying to say! Myself..I spent alot of time trying different brands of amps..looking for that sound..vintage and modern amps but out of the 5 that I had, I only kept 2..a Fender and a Ampeg..but that just me!

First..get your hands on the tube amp that You like..hell with others opinions on it..put some good quality power tubes in it..IE..Rubys/JJs/Penta Labs/Tung-Sol/Sovtek and have the bias set by a tech,for your max out of your amp! Second..do not use the same brand tubes in your pre-amp..mix the brands up to cerate the sound that Your looking for..the power tubes need to be a matched set for max output..try different brands of tubes in the per-amp,mix them up,change slots out,and you will discover just how many different sounds one can get out of ones amp without paying a fortune for it!
Myself, I use 3-12AX7s in my pre-amp..I have a Tung-Sol in V1,a Penta Labs in V2,and a JJ in V3..it gives me the tone/sound that I was looking for.
Give this a try..and let me know what You find!
#30
Why not go for the Blues Jr. They're great sounding amps. Screw what anyone else says if you like the way it sounds...
Richard

I tried setting my password to "penis". It said my password wasn't long enough.

PRSi:
*ME Quatro
*CE-22
*SE Soapbar II
H&K TubeMeister
TC Electronic Nova System

PBT Native
#31
Alright,

I just listened to a whole butload of videos and soundfiles and I have to say that this amp sounds really lovely.
The one that stood out was this video right here:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cKwvLglmOfY
The title says it's a bluesbreaker but the amp looks like a 1974x (even says it in the description).

There are just a couple more question that I have^^.

1. The amp that you're offering doesn't have a tremolo channel and you changed something with the power supply filter. The videos I watched were mostly played on the tremolo channel and it seems that it is a little bit brighter thant the normal one. Is that why you made that little tweek in the circutry or does it have the exact same tone as the "normal" normal channel.

2. Would the amp work properly in germany since we have 230 Volt / 50 Herz power grid.

3. Does the amp use a fixed Tube Bias?

4. Id I would by that amp for that price, I would a have to pay a couple of taxes that I do not want to pay. But, if you would offer me that same amp for the very realistic price of 21€ I could get it delivered to my house for free. Better yet, you could give it to me as a gift^^. Would that be possible ?
I would still pay you the price, it's just a stupid formality.

5. Since you offered the amp for 700Au$ I take it that 700€ would include handling and shipping?

6. Could you make shure that no poisonous animal would hide itself in the package?

7.And that is the biggest question. I only have 500€ at my disposal right now and I don't know if I will be able to get 200€ anytime soner than the 1st of june. Is there a way of reserving that amp? I would understand if you say now, but I wouldn't have to lend me some money from a friend if that would be possible.
Last edited by lrt75914 at Jan 26, 2012,
#32
1. I beefed up the power supply filter to cut back on mains hum. That makes it quieter than the originals. I consider the original filter cap values to be a design flaw. Apart from that it sounds just like the normal channel of a 1974X. I left the tremelo channel out because there isn't a lot of room inside those tins. If you want tremelo I figured you can just use a pedal. I could do a far better build without it and I thought that was more important.

2. Yes. Australia is 230V 50 Hz as well and that is what it is currently wired up for.

3. No. It is cathode biased so you don't have to rebias it when you change tubes, It's just plug and play.

4. I'll call it whatever you want me to call it.

5. Yes, 700€ includes postage, packing and insurance. That's an all inclusive price, no hidden costs

6. Yeah, I'll check no snakes or spiders have crawled inside it.

7. Not really. The money I get for them finances the next one so reserving it until then would stall production for too long. I can't do that. However if it's sold the absolute maximum waiting time for the next one in a worst case scenario would be about one month. That would cover the time it takes for me to receive the parts and build it.
Each one does look a little different though. The next one will be more like this one: http://cathbard.com/jack-daniels-marshall2.html but by June I could be using a completely different tin again. That's a long way away and I have to use what I can find. Black JD tins are actually a bit tricky to find.
They are works of art and the final product depends on the style of tin I am using. This one is black and chrome, the next one will be black and gold. Who knows what the ones after that will look like? If you want the black and chrome one I'd jump on it asap.
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
#33
Ya my comment in parentheses was an inside joke with cath completely unrelated to this topic... I don't want it to seem like I saying anything about the amp or its price. I'm dead serious; I plan on buying one of these in the next year. That's a steal, and I know cath to be a perfectionist to a fault so I'm sure its top notch.
Quote by Cathbard
Quote by Raijouta
Unless its electronic drums.

BURN THE WITCH!!!!!
#34
Also, to the TS, if you have never played this style of amplifier before, you may want to ask Cath to see if he can put a PPIMV in there for you.

Those youtube videos are nice to listen to through headphones but rarely give you an accurate depiction of just what kind of volumes the amp is being played at.
#35
A PPIMV would wreck the look of the amp. I'd have to put it between the other two knobs and that would just ruin 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
My band
#36
How about an FX Loop and some cascaded gain stages for teh brootz.
I want to play djent on that thing^^.

Wouldn't a PPIMV take away all the power amp saturation?
#37
With a non master volume amp an FX loop is a gimmik. Plus it would require another tube and there just isn't room in there.

I have experimented with a PPIMV and it did work ok but they are better without them. You can't do it without losing some tone even if you turn it up full. They are pretty loud but not over the top. You don't have to crank a 1974X all the way to 10 to get some tube breakup. Unless you live in an apartment building like sardines in a can they are fine.
The thing about the 1974 is that the blend of preamp and power amp distortion as you crank them up is bloody near perfect. A PPIMV screws with that blend. As I see it - why screw with perfection? They are one of the best blues amps ever made just as they are. If you want some distortion at lower volumes shove an overdrive/boost in front of 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
My band
#38
Quote by Cathbard
With a non master volume amp an FX loop is a gimmik. Plus it would require another tube and there just isn't room in there.

I have experimented with a PPIMV and it did work ok but they are better without them. You can't do it without losing some tone even if you turn it up full. They are pretty loud but not over the top. You don't have to crank a 1974X all the way to 10 to get some tube breakup. Unless you live in an apartment building like sardines in a can they are fine.
The thing about the 1974 is that the blend of preamp and power amp distortion as you crank them up is bloody near perfect. A PPIMV screws with that blend. As I see it - why screw with perfection? They are one of the best blues amps ever made just as they are. If you want some distortion at lower volumes shove an overdrive/boost in front of it.


The FX loop was just a joke ;-)

I don't think I will have a need for a PPIMV anyway.
I don't need it to break up all the time anyway and a pedal seems to be a better option than screwing with the tone of that amp.

BTW:
http://www.ebay.de/itm/jack-daniels-empty-tin-box-with-2-glasses-/330675917869?pt=UK_Collectables_Advertising_ET&hash=item4cfdd2142d

Wouldn't that make a lovely case for another build^^

PS:

Didn't you want to go to bed 4 hours ago :-D
Last edited by lrt75914 at Jan 26, 2012,
#39
Quote by Cathbard
With a non master volume amp an FX loop is a gimmik. Plus it would require another tube and there just isn't room in there.

I have experimented with a PPIMV and it did work ok but they are better without them. You can't do it without losing some tone even if you turn it up full. They are pretty loud but not over the top. You don't have to crank a 1974X all the way to 10 to get some tube breakup. Unless you live in an apartment building like sardines in a can they are fine.
The thing about the 1974 is that the blend of preamp and power amp distortion as you crank them up is bloody near perfect. A PPIMV screws with that blend. As I see it - why screw with perfection? They are one of the best blues amps ever made just as they are. If you want some distortion at lower volumes shove an overdrive/boost in front of it.

Why does the lack of master volume make an effects loop a gimmick?
Richard

I tried setting my password to "penis". It said my password wasn't long enough.

PRSi:
*ME Quatro
*CE-22
*SE Soapbar II
H&K TubeMeister
TC Electronic Nova System

PBT Native
#40
They don't show the lid but yeah, it would probably be a nice one for the job and the price isn't bad apart from shipping costs. I have a couple ready to go already though. Oddly enough I find that often the best place to get them is the UK, not the US. Yanks tend to ask too much for them but the UK shipping prices are outrageous - and slow, so very, very slow. Royal Mail is atrocious. Aussies are starting to ask silly prices for them too.
Basically, no matter where they come from there's a downside to it.


Quote by richardlpalmer
Why does the lack of master volume make an effects loop a gimmick?

Because the main reason an FX loop is useful is to break in after the tubes doing all the distortion. On a non-MV amp that's the power tubes which are after the FX loop - so unless you need line level to run some old 80's studio gear what's the point?
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
Last edited by Cathbard at Jan 26, 2012,
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