#1
Hey I wanna get Marshall head, but can't decide which would be best (they're all in similar price).
I wanna have really nice clean sound, and oldschool 80-90s rock/metal tone.
1. Marshall JCM 900 SL-X Hi Gain Master Volume
2. Marshall JCM 900 Hi Gain Dual Reverb
3. Marshall JCM 2000 DSL 50
4. Marshall JCM 2000 TSL 60 (I heard it smells a bit like transistor?)

Please vote like:
1->3->2->4
Best -> worse in Your opinion, additional comments are really welcome, thanks.
#2
have you checked out an 800? With a good OD pedal if you need it to be a bit thicker, the 800 is the amp to get. although i don't know a whole lot about these other 2, i've heard the 900 is a one trick pony and can't even do that trick very well. a friend of mine uses a 2000 and he's always telling me he wishes he went for an 800.
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Quote by CaptainAmerican
I would recommend the marshal MG100

Very versatile and quality sound. It should treat you well
#3
Yes I checked 800, it's 1/3 more expensive than JCM 900/2000, I can't afford it.
There's only :
- JTM 60
- Vintage Modern 2466
for similar price as jcm900/2000
Though JCM are pretty good amps ...
Last edited by Blazkowicz at Jan 27, 2013,
#4
I had the 2000 DSL and didnt care for it
I have the 900 HGDR and love it, great heavy distortion and nice cleans
And it has few knobs (10) so its much easier to dial i your tone than the 2000
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#5
The JCM2000 is actually very versitile, and it has a good clean ch.
It does a pretty good Marshall Plexi tone. The ultra chs are pretty good, much more modern of a tone than the 800/900DR. The only draw back is that both ch's share the same EQ. But there are 2 voicings for each Ch, so it is a Quasi 4 Ch.

The JCM900 S-LX is a great amp, but it is only 1 ch like the old 2203/2204 JCM800's. It is pretty heavy sounding amp.

Really the DSL 50/100 are your best bet for versatility. The SLX is probably the best for balls out gain, The 900DR is not that great with out some mods.

I had a DSL100 and I really like it I play in a Prog-Metal band and a Hardcore/Punk band and it does really well.
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Last edited by Robbgnarly at Jan 27, 2013,
#6
What Rob said.
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#7
Ok, and by JCM2000 You meant DSL? Or TSL too?
Yea that's the blood with DSL - shared EQ.
#8
the TSLs I've tried were fizzy, dark (crazy lack of presence even with a Tele) and just didn't sound good. Esp high gain. I don't recommend those.
I nearly bought a JCM2000 DSL50 a while back, they have good cleans, good crunch and the lead channel/modes had some serious gain on tap. Like Robb said, they're your best bet for versatility.
the JCM900 Dual Reverb Model has a lot of solid state elements, to the point where you could say it's not all tube (like Blackstar's HT series).
I really dug the SL-X. Meh clean channel though.
hope that helps
#9
DSL - had it (100w head version), it's alright, can't say it was particularly great. Simply the best all-round Marshall; two channels with shared controls make it hard to dial in a variety of tones at once, though, so basically no matter what you put in, you've got a low-gain and high-gain version of the same thing.
TSL - used it (60w head version), fairy good, actually more appropriate for my own uses but it's easy to see why most people think it's inferior. Darker (note: not 'heavier') tone than the DSL, slightly tighter on the high-gain, slightly colder low-gain tones.
JCM900 - used it (er, don't remember which one, but it was a head), fantastic late-80s-early-90s alt-rock tone, very thin mid-gain tones, sort of Vox-like low-gain tones. Same problem as the DSL in terms of dialing in different tones; when you want something different you've really got to walk over to the amp and start messing with each knob.

Versatility and user-friendliness: TSL. 80s and early 90s: JCM900. 70s and 00s: DSL.
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#10
DSL's slay TSL's. A DSL sounds like a proper Marshall. The shared EQ is no big deal.
Gilchrist custom
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Marshall 18W clone
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Marshall 1960A
Boss GT-100


Cathbard Amplification
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#11
Yeah, I wouldn't worry about the shared EQ. My buddy has a DSL 2000, and I've got a Jet City and 5150, and on all three amps the EQ being shared isn't an issue at all.

Also, does the JCM900 not have a shared EQ as well?
I have a huge fear if rays.
#12
Yeah, it's shared on the JCM900 as well. The JCM900 DR is pretty much crappy for anything but punk though unless you mod 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
#13
The DSL is the only one that's going to get you a good clean sound. Not really any room for discussion there if you need cleans.
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#14
Meh, to hell with cleans

As everyone has said, the DSL is a rocking little amp. I would get the 900 SL-X, but I don't need cleans
I'm just a kickin' and a gougin' in the mud and the blood and the beer.
#15
Ah clean, well, usually chicks wants me to play Don't Cry instead of Metal Militia haha
I just have sometimes emo feelings and this is time for me to create some oldschool metal ballad hehe

Thanks for help, I've already forgot about Dual reverb and TSL, I ll try to get DSL or check the SL-X if I would get a chance.
#16
Yeah you aren't going to get cleans with the SL-X, though the dirt may be worth it for you, It may just be the best high gain dirt sound Marshall has ever done (I think it is)
I'm just a kickin' and a gougin' in the mud and the blood and the beer.
#17
I had today 10 mins with JCM 900 S-LX and I swear, that was happiest 10 mins of my life, the lead tone ripped my as off ... I forget for 10 min that guitar can play clean tone.
The DSL lead tone is maybe similar to S-LX a lot ? Becouse it was perfect, but i really wish have some nice clean dam ...
There's no chance to get some decent clean with S-LX ? Some mods, additional stomps or something ... ?
#18
Getting clean tones is merely a task of balancing the strength of the signal going into the amp and the amp's gain. It's why guitars have volume controls on them. You want a cleaner tone? Knock the guitar's output down. Want to have a really heavily pushed sound and a lower-gain option? That's why we have overdrive pedals.

The larger problem to me, as I said before, is only having one EQ section. Personally, I like a different EQ for my low-gain and high-gain tones. While it's not hard to get a JCM900 running clean, it is hard to get a full tone out of it clean without it getting muddy with distortion (or, conversely, a clear distorted tone results in a very flat and cold clean tone). Of course the disclaimer that must be applied here, and should be applied to every post in this thread, is that "good cleans" are entirely subjective and what one person calls a good clean tone, another may call awful. But that said, if you're okay with the EQ thing then you should have no problems.

They're unlikely to be to your taste (or, indeed, anyones'), but check out Tristania. Their guitarist uses a JCM900 SL-X head with an OD and a Line 6 modulation/delay multi-effect. In most of their songs he'll get through a clean tone, a medium-distorted one and a heavily-distorted one. His rig is as simple as I've ever seen a professional use and he doesn't have problems getting clean tones out of the 900.
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