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#1
I'd like to hear any opinions you guys have on these 112 combos (from cheapest to most expensive):

Blackheart BH15-112
VHT Special 6 Ultra
Jet City JCA2112
Peavey Classic 30
Egnater Tweaker 15 (or head + 112)
Marshall DSL401
Orange Tiny Terror

I'm really at a toss up between the Classic 30 and the DSL401.

I need whichever one has the best picking dynamics (from clean to dirty with pick attack).

These aren't arbitrary selections, these are ones that I can actually get in my budget, today.
Spin 'round carousel when your horse isn't screwed in.

My band:
Fractured Instinct
(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
Last edited by Offworld92 at Jan 6, 2014,
#2
I've owned a Classic 50 (basically 50W version of Classic 30), and at first I liked it.
Just recently though I bought a 1978 Marshall 2104 (2204 in combo), and the Classic 50 just sounds horrible when compared to it. It sounds very boxy and 1 dimensional, and I really don't like it.
IMO if I were you, I would get either the Egnater Tweaker 15 or the Tiny Terror, leaning more towards the Tiny Terror.

Try as many amps as you can before deciding to buy one though.
My Gear:
Fender Classic 50s Strat
Gibson Les Paul Studio
1977 Marshall JMP 2104
1995 Marshall 1959SLP
Silvertone 1481
Yamaha RA-200
Last edited by jakub421 at Jan 6, 2014,
#3
Added Blackheart Handsome Devil and Jet City JCA2112 to the list.

I haven't played the Tweaker 15, but I have played the Tweaker 88 and I wasn't impressed at all. It just sounds like an amp that wants you to think it can do a lot, but all of the switches on it barely do anything at all.
Spin 'round carousel when your horse isn't screwed in.

My band:
Fractured Instinct
(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
#4
Whats your budget and what kind of music will you be playing?
My Gear:
Fender Classic 50s Strat
Gibson Les Paul Studio
1977 Marshall JMP 2104
1995 Marshall 1959SLP
Silvertone 1481
Yamaha RA-200
#6
$500 TOPS, from Guitar Center only (I have gift cards).

I compiled that list after spending the afternoon browsing all of their used combo amps from $200-500.
Spin 'round carousel when your horse isn't screwed in.

My band:
Fractured Instinct
(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
#7
What kind of music?
My Gear:
Fender Classic 50s Strat
Gibson Les Paul Studio
1977 Marshall JMP 2104
1995 Marshall 1959SLP
Silvertone 1481
Yamaha RA-200
#8
Quote by Offworld92
$500 TOPS, from Guitar Center only (I have gift cards).

I compiled that list after spending the afternoon browsing all of their used combo amps from $200-500.

Sweet! I like the Alchemist in that price range and low watts. GC used has 3 from head to combo.
#10
Quote by Ippon
Sweet! I like the Alchemist in that price range and low watts. GC used has 3 from head to combo.


If there is one in budget, the Alchemist might not be a bad idea, though I have doubts about its dynamic response (haven't played it though).

Just going on a limb here, I am thinking the DSL is probably the most responsive to pick attack. If the other Marshalls I have played (including the bigger DSLs) are anything to go by, then I would think that little guy is the one. I also think it would sound better than any of the other ones, but that's just me.
I'm just a kickin' and a gougin' in the mud and the blood and the beer.
#11
Thank you very much dementiacaptain. I've asked about amps with dynamic response before, and people tend to kind of avoid that stipulation. I appreciate your input.

I'll check out the Alchemist. I remember not being impressed with it, but way back when I checked it out I was probably looking for modern metal tones.
Spin 'round carousel when your horse isn't screwed in.

My band:
Fractured Instinct
(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
#12
Don't get the dsl401, I had one for years and although it sounded pretty great, the rectifier is badly heat sync'd and melts all the time (like, 3 times in five years). I had a Hayden for a while and that was pretty good, like the tiny terror in terms of wattage and size etc, but with more features - though recently they've revamped the line and moved production from the uk to china, so I have no knowledge of the quality of their current line. Personally I'm an unapologetic fender fanboy and will always recommend the hot-rod range for versatility, or the vintage range for general awesomeness. On a side note, Marshall have recently released the new line of DSL's, including a more reliably el34 valved 40 watter, and a 6v6 valves 15 watter that comes in head or combo form.

saying all that, I've only ever heard good things about peavey's amps despite not having played one. I'd check out the internets for the 401's melty problem though, it's quite common...

EDIT: the new line of Marshalls is probably the best bet in terms of the tones you like, and if touch sensitivity is your aim then go for an amp you can use and a good volume so you can get the power amp cooking.
Furnder Turlurcurstur '72 Cursturm
A tuner
RAT!@#?1!
Oloctro Hormonox Doloxo Momory Mon
Fenders Deluxes Reverbs.
Last edited by DeviousByNature at Jan 6, 2014,
#13
Quote by Offworld92
Thank you very much dementiacaptain. I've asked about amps with dynamic response before, and people tend to kind of avoid that stipulation. I appreciate your input.

I'll check out the Alchemist. I remember not being impressed with it, but way back when I checked it out I was probably looking for modern metal tones.



Well what with all the metal heads here I doubt many people even pay attention to it

Even though I play metal, I still always like to try that out on the amps I play. There something so "pure" about using the volume knob for cleans, its a neat sound.

EDIT: Guy above me, the heat sink thing is common knowledge around here, there are a bunch of guys that have solutions for it, good of you to mention though.
I'm just a kickin' and a gougin' in the mud and the blood and the beer.
Last edited by dementiacaptain at Jan 6, 2014,
#14
I love the DSL amps. I own a DSL100 myself and I wouldnt trade it for anything, but in my experience the 401s just arent that great. Could be just a speaker issue though, so theres the possibility that swapping the speaker out down the track would turn it into an absolute beast.

My pick from that list would be the tiny terror. Great amp.
#15
theres another thread titled egnater where we discuss why the 40 watti s far better than the 15. i would highly recommend it, buy it used if you need to. not that its bad, but the 15 is certainly not nearly as good as the 40.
Carvin CT624
Walden G630ce Acoustic
Carvin V3M, Avatar 2x12 WGS Reaper, vet 30
(crybaby, Fairfield circuitry Comp, GFS tuner, Vick Audio 73 Ram's Head, Xotic AC booster, lovepedal trem, TC Flashback, PGS Trinity Reverb, Walrus Audio Aetos power)
#16
Offworld, there is a Mesa boogie DC-2 for $499 on the GC used site. That would do you just fine, basically a 20 watt Mesa Mark III with only 2 channels

Your welcome
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
#17
Quote by dementiacaptain
EDIT: Guy above me, the heat sink thing is common knowledge around here, there are a bunch of guys that have solutions for it, good of you to mention though.


Aye, but when buying an amp you may not want to sink a load of time/money into fixing problems it shouldn't have. In reply to the question of a speaker swap in the dsl401, I had a Celestion V30 in mine for a while and it sounded the tits (the speaker is now in my brother's Hayden).
Furnder Turlurcurstur '72 Cursturm
A tuner
RAT!@#?1!
Oloctro Hormonox Doloxo Momory Mon
Fenders Deluxes Reverbs.
#18
Quote by Offworld92
Thank you very much dementiacaptain. I've asked about amps with dynamic response before, and people tend to kind of avoid that stipulation. I appreciate your input.

I'll check out the Alchemist. I remember not being impressed with it, but way back when I checked it out I was probably looking for modern metal tones.

The Alchemist, 212 with EVM 12Ls, and Highway One Tele, have been my favorite go to rig.
#19
Quote by DeviousByNature
Aye, but when buying an amp you may not want to sink a load of time/money into fixing problems it shouldn't have. In reply to the question of a speaker swap in the dsl401, I had a Celestion V30 in mine for a while and it sounded the tits (the speaker is now in my brother's Hayden).



Oh no doubt, its a good point to bring up too! I wasn't trying to take refute your point, just adding to the conversation
I'm just a kickin' and a gougin' in the mud and the blood and the beer.
#20
Quote by Robbgnarly
Offworld, there is a Mesa boogie DC-2 for $499 on the GC used site. That would do you just fine, basically a 20 watt Mesa Mark III with only 2 channels

Your welcome


Oh shit, this amp sounds great. Never listened to it before. It's the top contender right now.

Talk about the very tops of the budget though. Remember it's gonna be another $50 with tax and shipping.
Spin 'round carousel when your horse isn't screwed in.

My band:
Fractured Instinct
(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
#21
Quote by dementiacaptain
Oh no doubt, its a good point to bring up too! I wasn't trying to take refute your point, just adding to the conversation


I think the residual anger of having one amp melt on me three times just seeped into my post. My apologies. On the other hand I do fancy a beer right now...
Furnder Turlurcurstur '72 Cursturm
A tuner
RAT!@#?1!
Oloctro Hormonox Doloxo Momory Mon
Fenders Deluxes Reverbs.
#22
Quote by Offworld92
Oh shit, this amp sounds great. Never listened to it before. It's the top contender right now.

Talk about the very tops of the budget though. Remember it's gonna be another $50 with tax and shipping.



So worth it though. Such a sweet grab. If they are like the Mark III I had, it should be very responsive to your picking dynamics.
I'm just a kickin' and a gougin' in the mud and the blood and the beer.
#23
Quote by Offworld92
Oh shit, this amp sounds great. Never listened to it before. It's the top contender right now.

Talk about the very tops of the budget though. Remember it's gonna be another $50 with tax and shipping.

Yeah, but they are great amps. I have a buddy that has the DC-3 and it is a great amp it does cleans to shread
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
#24
That's the thing that's really hard to ask about on a forum. I don't really care about how far its range goes, just how much I can get out of a single setting by messing with my tone, volume and attack.

The only amp that has blown me away and is exactly what I want is the Marshall Vintage Modern, but I don't want to wait to amass $1300 for the stack, and I need a small tube amp for my room as well (I live on the 3rd story and any stack will have to stay down in the garage). This is the necessary self-indulgent stopgap.
Spin 'round carousel when your horse isn't screwed in.

My band:
Fractured Instinct
(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
#25
I thought the VM was rather disappointing. Buy the Mesa, man - and not as a stopgap, as an alternative.
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
#26
Quote by DeviousByNature
I think the residual anger of having one amp melt on me three times just seeped into my post. My apologies. On the other hand I do fancy a beer right now...


I have had 2 401's and I don't think they are as good as their big brothers the 50 and 100.

Even the later models with a better design rectifier and lower bias still get very hot.

While they can do cleans to mid gain metal I found myself getting bored after 10 minutes of playing.

The OD channel with light break up was my favorite and had the most dynamics.


Offworld- mesa's have a huge dynamics- you will hear your mistakes. Be prepared for that. It would be the one I would pick-up.
Quote by DeathByDestroyr
See, it's important that people clarify when they say "metal", because I pretty much always assume they are a Cannibal Corpse fanboi.
#27
Quote by Cathbard
I thought the VM was rather disappointing. Buy the Mesa, man - and not as a stopgap, as an alternative.


I know you're experience was lackluster, but our own ears are king at the end of the day and my ears tell me that the VM is the most enjoyable amp I've ever played for clean & crunch tones. Opinions and tastes and all that.
Spin 'round carousel when your horse isn't screwed in.

My band:
Fractured Instinct
(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
#28
Quote by R45VT
...

Offworld- mesa's have a huge dynamics- you will hear your mistakes. Be prepared for that. It would be the one I would pick-up.

Really curious with terms used, specifically dynamics. I typically associate dynamics with amp power. I've had the DC2, 2 EL84s (25W); so, I was wondering if people are using dynamics interchangeably with fidelity. Simply put, as output power goes down, fidelity may go up, but dynamics will go down since low power restricts the speaker to recreate the dynamic swings.
#29
My Splawn and Single Rec are super dynamic and sensitive. To a fault

I got my Single Rec for $490 so that is what I recommend.

I know that doesn't really help

But if these are the amp that are at your GC and you are using GC cards then why can't you just go there and play them all over and over again until you can make a decision?

But yeah, I'd go fot that DC3 Robb found. I guess you get the store that has it to ship it to you or do they ship it to your GC or what?
#30
Quote by Offworld92
I know you're experience was lackluster, but our own ears are king at the end of the day and my ears tell me that the VM is the most enjoyable amp I've ever played for clean & crunch tones. Opinions and tastes and all that.
Yeah, yeah. Buy the Mesa.
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
#31
Quote by 311ZOSOVHJH
My Splawn and Single Rec are super dynamic and sensitive. To a fault

I got my Single Rec for $490 so that is what I recommend.

I know that doesn't really help

But if these are the amp that are at your GC and you are using GC cards then why can't you just go there and play them all over and over again until you can make a decision?

But yeah, I'd go fot that DC3 Robb found. I guess you get the store that has it to ship it to you or do they ship it to your GC or what?


Unfortunately I need a combo, not a head. Otherwise I'd have a lot more options.

No, they're not at my store. Otherwise I wouldn't have made a thread. My store doesn't have (and never has) shit.

Yeah I'll get it shipped to my GC. I'll see if they can knock shipping off of course, but it's not something to count on. My GC is particularly stingy compared to some stories I've read here.
Spin 'round carousel when your horse isn't screwed in.

My band:
Fractured Instinct
(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
#32
Well if you really liked the VM, then you'll probably really like the DSL401, or the JCA22. They're great hodrodded Marshally amps. I haven't played that Mesa DC, but from the tones you've listed, I think you're after a more British flavor. They're dynamic amps as well.
Gear:

Squier Strat
Epiphone Explorer
Agile AL-3100

No AMP
#33
Quote by Offworld92
Unfortunately I need a combo, not a head. Otherwise I'd have a lot more options.

No, they're not at my store. Otherwise I wouldn't have made a thread. My store doesn't have (and never has) shit.

Yeah I'll get it shipped to my GC. I'll see if they can knock shipping off of course, but it's not something to count on. My GC is particularly stingy compared to some stories I've read here.

There is a Single Rec combo out there but it is rare and is $700 I think. They do take EL34s and have pretty good mid gain marshally tones IMO.

I'm curious about the shipping thing because my GC told me some time back that they no longer do store to store transfers which is what I would be asking for. I guess if they make the customer pay for shipping then that's different.


Robb - how are you searching GC Used when you do that?
#34
I typed in mesa boogie and $500 as the search limit amount.

I tried typing dc-2 and got nothing

The stiletto Ace combo is a cool 1x12 if you ever get a chance to try one 311. I would not mind having one of the heads actually
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
Last edited by Robbgnarly at Jan 6, 2014,
#35
Guitar Center's search engine is horrifically bad.

I wish every search engine was eBay's. That thing is glorious.

So far I've ruled out the DSL because I don't want to deal with any of the crap that comes along with it. I've ruled out the Tiny Terror because its price to feature ratio is pretty horrific. Maybe if the tone was justified with the price, but I don't think it is personally. Tweakers are out because I just don't think they sound good. I think I feel the same way about Jet City, for the tones I'm interested in (cleans & low gain), they sound kinda flat. I still have no opinion on Blackheart or VHT.

So we're at Classic 30 vs Alchemist vs DC-2. With the DC-2 winning, but the cost isn't negligible. The application is a bedroom practice amp, with use with a band as a backup, basically.

Can you completely turn off the FX in the Bogner Alchemist? Built in FX are a big turn off in a tube amp, but if they can be ignored, that might still be on the table.

The DC-2 seems great, but I cannot find any clips of it at all besides the 3 or 4 crappy ones on Youtube. Is the Studio Caliber the same amp? There is a lot more info out there on that amp.
Spin 'round carousel when your horse isn't screwed in.

My band:
Fractured Instinct
(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
Last edited by Offworld92 at Jan 6, 2014,
#37
It is item # 109650442

The only thing I did notice is it does not have the Graphic EQ option like some do
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
#38
Quote by Offworld92
Guitar Center's search engine is horrifically bad.

I wish every search engine was eBay's. That thing is glorious.

So far I've ruled out the DSL because I don't want to deal with any of the crap that comes along with it. I've ruled out the Tiny Terror because its price to feature ratio is pretty horrific. Maybe if the tone was justified with the price, but I don't think it is personally.

Can you completely turn off the FX in the Bogner Alchemist? Built in FX are a big turn off in a tube amp, but if they can be ignored, that might still be on the table.

The DC-2 seems great, but I cannot find any clips of it at all besides the 3 or 4 crappy ones on Youtube. Is the Studio Caliber the same amp? There is a lot more info out there on that amp.

I actually love the built-in Reverb and Delay of the Alchemist, one of the reasons it's used a lot.

The DC2's Clean is amazing although I struggled with the Dirty channel with the Contour. Sounded scooped and you have to tweak it a bit. Didn't cut when I had it.

Yes, it is the Studio Caliber.
#39
I thought the VIP was a practice amp?


Just messin with you a bit. I know you have been after an amp.

I personally would have ruled out the amps you ruled out pretty much for the same reason.

Yes you can turn off the Reverb and Delay on teh Alchemist but they are good sounding effects.

I have zero experience with that VHT Special 8 but I did hear they had some quality issues.

I think you would really like a Blackheart. No one ever complained about their tone that I know of and you really do not hear too much about any quality issues. Granted there not very many of them out there.


Damn, there are a lot of GC's in Cali

I searched the Hollywood store and only came up with a DSL15C and a Blackstar HT20.

Maybe look at a Valveking. Seriously.
Last edited by 311ZOSOVHJH at Jan 6, 2014,
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