#1
Hi UG,

I had been thinking about getting a second amplifier to go back to a stereo-rig, but on a very tight budget. So, when the bassist in the band said he was looking to buy a new cabinet, but was a bit short on cash, I offered to buy back my old amp I sold him about 2 years ago for the same amount of money, so now, we both have something to add to our setups! ^^



It's the London City Bulldog.
Having owned this exact head previously, I actually made a (slightly embarrassing now that I read it back) NAD-thread about this one about three years ago, where you can find a 17 year old "never-had-a-tube-amp" me talk about how great it is.

To get things straight, a more nuanced review, also having had a lot more experience regarding gear since then.

It's definitely a good amplifier, but it lacks in a lot of ways as well. It's horribly noisy and there's quite a popping sound when switching channels. Also, the footswitch for the reverb doesn't work anymore (no idea how my friend broke that, since he didn't use the footswitch at all). Nothing that bad, though, because the reverb is worthless on cleans and even more on driven sounds. The cleans are nice, and when I came from an FM212, I totally get why it was awesome then, but they're not great. It's the worst clean tube amp I have owned in my opinion. It doesn't have much life to it, certainly dry, which is a pity, because I like my cleans dry.

The drive sounds are better though. Classic rock is where it (still) shines in my opinion, but it can do stoner rock and thrash as well, although I'd always want a boost for thrash in comparison to several years ago. It gets too fizzy with the gain too high up.

Also, I hate the looks as much as I loved them back then. I always liked the Rectifier-look and I guess this was close enough back then, but it's really nothing like the real deal in real life and it looks incredibly tacky if you know that it's a Marshall-type amplifier.

Having corrected my previous review, I must say that I'm really happy to have it back. At 200 euros, there's not much to complain about all that much. You can't expect it to be the greatest thing ever and I don't think I'd buy anything better for 200 euros unless it's a total rip-off. The popping doesn't matter in a band setting, where you can't hear it at all and neither does the noise. In my vintage inspired band, it totally fits in.

Some short clips for the enthusiasts:
Clean: https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/21992505/LCB/Bulldog%20Clean.mp3
Drive: https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/21992505/LCB/Bulldog%20Drive.mp3

Overall, great value amp, and it does sound good. I'd take it over a TSL (which is used by the other guitarist in my band) any day of the week, for instance. If you happen to come across one in good condition, check it out.

And now a question if people haven't gotten bored of reading yet: would it be a bad idea to run my TH30 and the Bulldog into my 212 V30 cab? It's 60W a speaker and this head is 100W. My TH30 checks out, as it is 30W, but I'd rather not blow up a speaker. I won't be gigging it this way, but I don't have my second cabinet at home to run them in stereo and get it all set up for when I actually have both my cabs ready to play live. So in short: 100W tube head into a 60W speaker at bedroom (e.g. not that loud that you have to shout to get over it) levels: bad idea or not?
#2
To be honest, when listening to the short clips, I like the clean sound better than the drive sound.
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#3
Quote by I K0nijn I
And now a question if people haven't gotten bored of reading yet: would it be a bad idea to run my TH30 and the Bulldog into my 212 V30 cab?


at the same time? depends.

is your cabinet stereo? if so then it can probably handle it, you'll just have to be careful with the 100 watt amp so as not to exceed the speakers power handling.

a safer bet would be to get separate cabs for each amp.

Quote by I K0nijn I
So in short: 100W tube head into a 60W speaker at bedroom (e.g. not that loud that you have to shout to get over it) levels: bad idea or not?


oh, that should be fine. that amp won't be making anywhere near 100 watts at bedroom volumes
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
#4
Thanks for the answer. It is a stereo cab, yes. It would be my 30 watt Orange into one 60W speaker and the London City into the other 60w speaker.

@Von geld: different tastes, I assume.
#5
Not sure what's going on with mic/volume in the dirt recording but that sounds extremely thin man. What was the EQ like?

The cleans were really nice though.
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#6
Never heard of that amp. Is it soposed to be Mesa-ish in tone? It looks like it would be

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#7
Quote by N_J_B_B
Not sure what's going on with mic/volume in the dirt recording but that sounds extremely thin man. What was the EQ like?

The cleans were really nice though.


EQ is 6,5 / 5 / 4 with T / M / B. The microphone sucks, though. Sounds better in person. The fact that I checked the recording on bass-heavy speakers probably doesn't help that much either. =P

@Robb: nope, totally not like Mesa. More hot-rodded Marshall-ish. Doesn't look the part, really.
#8
Quote by von gelb
To be honest, when listening to the short clips, I like the clean sound better than the drive sound.

+1, though I have a feeling that's because he's using a cheap condenser mic, which accentuates the highs and has a rolled off low end/low mids.
Quote by Dave_Mc
I've had tube amps for a while now, but never actually had any go down on me
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maybe you're not saying the right things? an amp likes to know you care.





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#9
nice
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#10
Congrats!



Quote by MatrixClaw
+1, though I have a feeling that's because he's using a cheap condenser mic, which accentuates the highs and has a rolled off low end/low mids.

I need to visit the recording forum so I can learn the ways.
#11
Quote by Ippon
I need to visit the recording forum so I can learn the ways.



Come on over, we even have crazies who think Beats headphones are the best!
Quote by Dave_Mc
I've had tube amps for a while now, but never actually had any go down on me
Quote by jj1565
maybe you're not saying the right things? an amp likes to know you care.





www.SanctityStudios.com
#12
Quote by MatrixClaw

Come on over, we even have crazies who think Beats headphones are the best!






that must be a fun bandwagon.
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#13
Quote by MatrixClaw
+1, though I have a feeling that's because he's using a cheap condenser mic, which accentuates the highs and has a rolled off low end/low mids.


Fact. It's the best thing I have to record, though.

Cheers to all.
#14
Quote by MatrixClaw


Come on over, we even have crazies who think Beats headphones are the best!


you gotta be joking.

i could see consumer end users liking them, i have a hard time believing recording guys would wanna mix with them.
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