#1
Hello everyone, this is the first time I post here but I have been a long time reader.
I’m sure that the AC30 vs AC15 question has been asked many times before, but I would like to know your opinion on my situation. I will be buying my next amp soon, and it will be one of this two, I do know that the AC30 has some awesome tone and the choice will be very easy given that money is not the problem, the real problem is that I since I got a kid now I moved all my guitar stuff to the small room in the house (it is quite small!!) also I’m and engineer and I travel a lot for work, I don’t gig and just play on my own (rarely play whit friend) so I don’t play as much as I used to anymore.

So what should I get?? I love the AC30 tone but should I go whit the AC15?? It is not possible do a lot of testing on both. Should I consider better the AC15 options whit two speakers or whit alnico blue speaker to get the AC30 tone? If I get the AC30 I will not get any good tones out of it because space and volume limitations?

To give you some more information I play whit:
Gibson les Paul standard
Fender American Deluxe
Modified Ephiphone les paul (SD JB and Jazz pickups)
Many pedals

Well that is it, please be kind to share your thoughts on this, please excuse any typos, misspelling, grammatical errors and other mistakes but English is not my first language.

Last, maybe I should mention that I suck at playing!! I got better attitude than skills!!

Thank you for reading all this!
#2
The AC15 should be fine
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
#3
Quote by pedalero
So what should I get?? I love the AC30 tone but should I go whit the AC15??
Well it depends on what you like.
You know what, you should test them!
Quote by pedalero
It is not possible do a lot of testing on both.
Well even 5 minutes with each side to side would suffice if ya ask me.
Quote by pedalero
Should I consider better the AC15 options whit two speakers or whit alnico blue speaker to get the AC30 tone?
As far as I'm aware of stuff, the classic AC30 is a 2x12 with speakers resembling the alnico blue's, so if space's an issue I'd go for a 1x12 with a single alnico blue.
Quote by pedalero
If I get the AC30 I will not get any good tones out of it because space and volume limitations?
Isn't the 1x12 AC30 as small as the 1x12 AC15?

Anyway, I've never tried them in person (I'll do that next time, I promise), but I've hear mixed opinions about the differences between the two - some say it's the same thing, but in different sizes, and some say they're completely different thing, so I guess the only way for you to be sure is to try for yourself.

I've seen these alnico blue's go for a ****in lot of money though, so if I was on a budget I'd either get a clone if you find it for real cheap (wgs black and blue for example), or go for something different like a G12H30, or be original and find myself a jensen 12" alnico something.
Name's Luca.

Quote by OliOsbourne
I don't know anything about this topic, but I just clicked on this thread because of your username :O
Quote by Cajundaddy
Clue: amplifiers amplify so don't turn it on if you need quiet.
Quote by chrismendiola
I guess spambots are now capable of reading minds.
#5
AC30 is a serious gigging rig and way overkill for a small room playing by yourself. They probably are both overkill for your expected purpose. To get great tone at really low volume I would/did choose something else. It is far less expensive and a tube hybrid but with really sweet sound that is useful for practice or recording:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CGeWr6dHvFk
"Your sound is in your hands as much as anything. It's the way you pick, and the way you hold the guitar, more than it is the amp or the guitar you use." -- Stevie Ray Vaughan

"Anybody can play. The note is only 20 percent. The attitude of the motherfucker who plays it is 80 percent." -- Miles Davis

Guthrie on tone: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zmohdG9lLqY
#6
You need to test them at the volume level you are going to play in your room. Some amps sound worse and some better at low volume.

If you like Vox tones, maybe get the Valvetronix modeling amp. It will sound pretty good at any volume level and will have some variety. It will fit your small room a lot better than a real AC30.

But yeah, as I said, we don't know how loud you can play so you need to try it yourself. If it sounds good at the volume level you are going to play in your room, then of course get the real thing (if that's what you are after). I don't think AC15 will be noticeably quieter than AC30 and they both may be an overkill, depending on how quiet you need to play.
Quote by AlanHB
Just remember that there are no boring scales, just boring players.

Gear

Bach Stradivarius 37G
Charvel So Cal
Fender Dimension Bass
Hartke HyDrive 210c
Ibanez BL70
Laney VC30
Tokai TB48
Yamaha FG720S-12
Yamaha P115
#7
The thing is that I live in Mexico so actually testing them here is very difficult, what I will be doing is actually go to the us to a guitar center in Texas and buy it, I was there last week and they didn’t have any of the two at the time, so I will order online and pick it up in the store.

Other options are welcome too, and actually budget is not my main concern, I just want to get the best tone I can within the $1200 Budget. My plan was to get the AC30 whit the two alnico blue speaker but as you guys say I believed it was too much for what I do.
#8
I think you will be happy with the AC15. I have one and it is great for practicing at home (I have a pretty small room as well). Sometimes I like to crank it up when I'm home alone and I can't even turn it up all the way, it's just too loud. The AC30 would be way too much but if you think it sounds better then go for it. I don't think they sound very different.
#9
Quote by 757ian123
I think you will be happy with the AC15. I have one and it is great for practicing at home (I have a pretty small room as well). Sometimes I like to crank it up when I'm home alone and I can't even turn it up all the way, it's just too loud. The AC30 would be way too much but if you think it sounds better then go for it. I don't think they sound very different.

I don't think there's that much difference between AC15 and AC30 when it comes to volume. So if an AC30 is an overkill, AC15 will be an overkill. And I'm pretty sure both of them are as good (or as bad) at bedroom volumes. Sounding good at low volumes isn't about wattage. Some 100 watt amps sound great at bedroom levels and some 5 watt amps sound bad at bedroom levels. And both of them will be really loud when turned up. Of course you can't crank a 15 watt amp in your bedroom. That's really loud if you are playing alone.
Quote by AlanHB
Just remember that there are no boring scales, just boring players.

Gear

Bach Stradivarius 37G
Charvel So Cal
Fender Dimension Bass
Hartke HyDrive 210c
Ibanez BL70
Laney VC30
Tokai TB48
Yamaha FG720S-12
Yamaha P115
#10
Ever considered the an AC4.
In an apartment, an AC15 and especially an AC30 might be to loud.

Actually, I think that MaggaraMarine's suggestion of a Vox Valvtronix might me a better idea.
It doesn't nail the AC15 or AC30 sound perfectly, but it doesn't to do bad of a job.

For the record, I currently own an AC30 and used to own an AD30VT and did a side by side comparison using the same cabinet (I modded my AD30VT to accept an external cab).
Last edited by CodeMonk at Apr 26, 2014,
#11
I have an AC30 and even when gigging, I never turn up the master volume past half way.

I'd say either the AC30 or AC15 would be good for you as long as it's the 1 speaker version.

I used to jam with a band with an AC15 and I had no problem being heard over the drummer.
#12
The AC4 is deff worth a look, the AC4c1 has the AC30 top-boost channel and a lot of people say it sounds more like the AC30 than the AC15 does. They also have a handwired version with a 12" greenback. It really is worth a look given what you want to use it for and it is a smaller amp (so less space is needed)
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
#13
The AC15 is really only different in the amount of headroom (it's also a little bit less smooth than the AC30 to my ears, but that is subjective). You will get crunchy at a much lower volume. Trust me though, when I say that even the clean tone (on the edge of breakup) of the AC15 can be excessive in a small room, if you are mic'd up. You will also cut over the drums in a small rehearsal room (think living room/studio/den), if you push the master volume to about 12'oclock or greater. It is deceptively loud for it's size. If you are only interested in crunch and no clean, you will easily be loud enough to be excessively loud with shielded drums.
Fender Telecaster
DeArmond M series
Vox Night Train 15 head w/Weber loaded 1x12
Dunlop DVP3 Volume (X)
Klone circuit/Russian Big Muff 2in 1
Fulltone Fulldrive 2 MOSFET
TC Electronic Nova Delay
TC Electronic Nova Repeater
Line 6 M5
#14
Clean headroom is really the main concern. If you want a straight clean sound, the AC15 leaves a little to be desired volume-wise in my opinion. If you want more of a crunchy/overdriven sound, then it will be plenty loud.
#15
Thank you guys for all your comments, I have definitely given up the idea of the AC30, it’s sad but you are all right, it’s too loud. Big thanks to Robbgnarly cause I didn’t know there was an AC4 whit a 12” greenback, and that’s now one of my options.. I’ll keep looking for a bit and explore more low whatts options, I have heard great things about blackstars 5w and 1w options.. I don’t know if theres marshall that size..
#16
i have the AC15cl and i play a 2013 gibson lp standard thru it.it great for a small room.even a small venue.Besides i love the Vox looks.You might also want to try out a Fender blues jr.has a warmer sound IMHO.
#17
Hey I was just wondering what you guys think of running a Blackstar HT-DUAL or HT-DISTX Tube Distortion Pedal through a Vox AC15VR. You can kind of tell I'm on a budget, trying to get out of debt.
#18
Well yeah it'd work just fine.
I don't really understand what kinda opinions you're expecting from that question.
Name's Luca.

Quote by OliOsbourne
I don't know anything about this topic, but I just clicked on this thread because of your username :O
Quote by Cajundaddy
Clue: amplifiers amplify so don't turn it on if you need quiet.
Quote by chrismendiola
I guess spambots are now capable of reading minds.
#19
I think going with the slightly bigger AC30 shouldn't be that much of a problem, you just won't crank it as much most of the time, but you can when you need to. I jam with a few guys that used to be good and are now retired for the most part from gigs. They all downsized and their "rigs" are just pure pathetic and we always have to find a way to mic them up when we get together as they barely hold over a drummer. I rather have the volume on tap and not use it all than not...
Perceived difference between the 15 and the 30 - I don't think there is that much but both should be fine for bedroom and small jams. The 30 should be great for all purposes. Sound like you want it as well - so go for it.

Dealing with Guitar Center - now you have to be 100% certain that the gear is there, even if you ordered it, they can muck it up and sour your trip. Been there, done that

I'd suggest that you try some small wattage heads and 2x12 combos if you can and even a few other amps that can go down in wattage if needed.

Orange Tiny Terror - head or combo 5 and 15 watt option, sounds great
Marshall Class5 - I think head is only in production now, but there is a combo version. 1 watt to 5 watt, probably bit underpowered for jamming occasionally with drummer but still very good.
Mesa 5:25 - goes down to 5 watts and dishes out 25 when needed
Laney Cub or LC-15 if you can find it
http://www.guitarcenter.com/Laney-CUB-12R-15W-1x12-Tube-Guitar-Combo-Amp-J00136-i3286182.gc
#20
Quote by Spambot_2
Well yeah it'd work just fine.
I don't really understand what kinda opinions you're expecting from that question.


Okay here's what I want to know. If I spent $303 on a restock Vox AC15VR and $250 on a Blackstar HT-DUAL Tube Pedal, that would be about $553 total. Compare that to the Blackstar HT Club 40 Tube Amp which has a restock for $560 and comes with a footswitch. I get the impression that Blackstar's amps have kind of a flat, refined distorted tone and a decent clean tone, and if I want to get the capabilities of a Vox tube amp but at the same time have the option for metal distortion, would the Vox Amp and Blackstar Pedal combo give me more tone options than just a Blackstar Amp?

I really like that the Vox AC15VR has a restock for $303 on MF, that seems unbeatable for any kind of quality tube amp with power. I would be using it for recording, practice and possibly some coffee shop type gigs, but I wouldn't have the option of distortion like this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xGm1CY_Jwck without a pedal, and I don't want to mess with cheap pedals really.
#22
The amp I am currently using at home is a JTM45 through a single 1x12 and it works fine, It's comparable to the AC30, volumewise and it isn't an issue. When I want distortion from it (which is most of the time) I just use a pedal to push it.
The AC15 and the AC30 sound different. Forget the power, buy the one you like the sound of.
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
Quote by diabolical
On tube amp that achieves crunch you don't really need distortion unless you want to. You can easily boost with a $40 overdrive and get amazing tone. In my case I use a cheapie $30 DOD 308 (Yngwie Malmsteen overdrive).


Thanks for your help. I'm looking at the Danelectro D series pedals and those are super cheap. If I got the D-2 OD pedal and the Vox AC15VR Restock my bill would only be $315! Not sure yet which one I'm going for because I'm not really sure what style I'm writing but I want some versatility for a progressive/experimental approach.
#24
Danelectrois what you pay for it, i.e. usually crap, but some of them don't sound bad if you can handle the extra noise in some cases. Had a friendthat got their Black licorice pedal and got some pretty rad tones out of it.
You sure you can't swing a few more $ for more quality?
A few suggestions:
http://www.guitarcenter.com/Marshall-Used--Marshall--Jackhammer---Effect-Pedal-110081813-i3747458.gc
http://www.guitarcenter.com/In-Store-Used-USED-MARSHALL-GV-2-GUV-NOR-PLUS-DISTORTION-PEDAL-110080935-i3747782.gc
http://www.guitarcenter.com/In-Store-Used-USED-DOD-YJM308-MALMSTEEN-OVERDRIVE-110065645-i3710616.gc
http://www.guitarcenter.com/In-Store-Used-USED-BBE-GREEN-SCREAMER-OVERDRIVE-PEDAL-110064698-i3719075.gc
http://www.guitarcenter.com/DigiTech-Screamin--Blues-Overdrive-Guitar-Effects-Pedal-102670213-i1124376.gc
http://www.guitarcenter.com/DigiTech-HardWire-Series-CM-2-Tube-Overdrive-Guitar-Effects-Pedal-105018618-i1410003.gc
http://www.guitarcenter.com/DOD-Analog-Overdrive-Preamp-250-Guitar-Effects-Pedal-with-True-Bypass---LED-110146669-i3419009.gc


Plenty of other options, btw you can buy GC used - they'll ship to the GC that you go to. Probably they will have a lot of these ODs in Mexico as well. The Boss Blues OD is not bad too. The idea here is to get the crunch to go into overload.