#1
My tacky practice amp of the past 8 years has just gone bust, and I've decided that my playing is at a good enough level to warrant spending some good money on a better amp setup.

I was thinking about buying a Hughes & Kettner Tubemeister 18 head, as I tried it out with my PRS at a local store, and it had a great tone for metal and cleaner stuff too while not feeling pushed.

My main issue is deciding on a cab, however. I'm thinking 2x12 because of space, and it would be fine for playing the smaller venues I will be venturing towards in the near future.

I was mainly looking at the Orange PPC212, the open-backed PPC212, and Jim Root's signature closed-back PPC212. The standard closed-back PPC212 is more expensive than the Jim Root model, but my best guess is that it's to do with the Celestion speakers in the standard model, and 'special' speakers in the Jim Root. Can anyone recommend me one model over another, or a different manufacturer completely?

My budget is ~£800 for the head and cabinet combined, and the Tubemeister 18 costs £430 at RRP. I want to have a great distorted sound for metal, but also a crisp/light clean tone to play a bit of jazz on the side.

Thanks for your help in advance.
#2
A tubemeister 18?
You sure?
Have you tried a jet city?
Have you tried an egnater rebel/renegade?

Well anyway, for that kinda money I'd get a mesa rectifier 2x12 cab, or a custom cab with eminence v12s or celestion v30s - I think zilla is based in the uk so have a look at their cabs.

I don't know about the speakers in jim's signature cab, though judging from the price and the fact that the cab has nothing inherently different from the other apart from the color and the speakers, it may sound worse so try both of them one after the other if you think about buying them.
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#3
Not a fan of the tubemeister personally, but hey, if you like it that's all that matters.
I do like orange cabs but heard good things about the zilla cabs mention above.

I would make sure you try plenty of amps before purchasing though. Also, have you considered just getting a combo?
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#4
I have considered combos, but in all honesty they just don't excite me. I know that sounds stupid from a financial perspective, but I would need to find an exceptional combo to consider a purchase.

A good tube head has been of great interest to me for quite some time now, so that is where I'm looking.

I would like a Mesa - they are exceptional amps - but the rectifier is out of my price range as it is around £700: leaving £100 of my budget left for the head.

As for Zilla, they interest me a lot. They are cheaper than closed-back Orange amps (plus you can pay an extra £10 to have a detachable panel), and they sound pretty nice on the videos I watched. Additionally, the ability to customise the tolex, grille cloth etc. is a really nice feature.

Any suggestions for speakers, or would Celestion V30's be a good choice?
#5
just to point out, if you want tube, i'm not sure the tubemeister is actually genuinely all-tube. it's a bit light on preamp valves- there are some tricks you can do to maximise your available triodes, but even still. plus H&K has form with hybrids masquerading as valve amps.

not saying they're definitely not tube, but personally i'd be sceptical, at least until proven for sure to be valve.
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#6
The selling point of the mesa rectifier cabs (apart from the mesa/boogie logo) is the fact that celestion does the original (original original) v30s for them to put in their cabs.

I you can't get them, for your kinda stuff I'd say standard celestion v30s or eminence v12s (something like £35 cheaper) or a couple WGS v30 clones if you can find them for a nice price.

I get what you're saying about the combos anyway
But it's not even that much more expensive actually.
The only head that is significantly more expensive than the combo version I can think of is the 6505/6505+, but you probably don't want that since you said you wanted good cleans.

Anyway, since you gotta buy both an amp and a cab, maybe you can find something like a used EVH5150 III (the 50w one maybe) for £650 and use the money left for a harley benton g212 vintage.
Terrific cabs for the price.
It kinda depends if you value more the amp or the cab, if you wanna settle for them for the rest of your life and stuff like this.
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Clue: amplifiers amplify so don't turn it on if you need quiet.
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I guess spambots are now capable of reading minds.