#1
Hey guys, I've not posted for a bit as I've had a lot of real life stuff going on and breakups and emotions and stuff, but I wanted to appease the guys of GG&A with a question.

The question is, why am I not happy with the tones I am getting?

for some context;

I was talking to a non musician friend today about my gear, and I was saying that it's taken me years to find that one keeper guitar that I want to keep (My Schecter ATX V) and I have an amplifier that I love (Laney AOR100) but the two don't gel together, I find that the AOR is much more bassy than it was before and I find the Schecter doesn't help with the Blackouts in it.

But it's a trusty and roadworthy back up head and I don't want to part with it.

An issue I'm having is with my main amplifier which is a JCM800 with a Bad Monkey in front as a boost and I can get some nice gnarly tones out of it. But to be honest, I'm a bit underwhelmed. I have been with all the last three amps I've had (Fireball 60, Krank Rev and JCM 800)

I'm still wondering why I can't get a tone I really love out of the 800. I love the AOR it's the same amp virtually, so in theory I should love it right? I don't, I've changed the power amp tubes (EHX ones, cause they were the only ones I had and didn't want to risk two of my JJ's as two of them don't work IIRC) and it just sounds really sterile, flat and trebly.

I can't really spend much money, but I was thinking about when I got back from France (Festival trip) depending on how much I spend, I was going to get a new cab from Roadkill with Eminance speakers in it (The ones that model the V30 and the Greenback? I think they're the V128 and the GB128 or similar, and as I need another one for the Youth gigs I do, considering the other alternative is a Line Six Spyder and a Marshall MG I thought something nice would help.

But I'm not sure if that would be enough to get it to where I wanted, I was going to attempt to change the preamp tubes in it to JJ's but I don't think they'd make that much of a difference? Surely?

I can get some really nice At The Gates like tones out of it with my Schecter in Drop B and the Bad Monkey in front, but I just can't seem to hold onto an amplifier at all because I have it for a while and then go, that's not what I want.

Any advice here?
Bass Gear:

Mensinger: Speesy
Fender Precision 1989 (CIJ Rosewood)
Fender Steve Harris (CIJ)
Lakland J Sonic 5
Epiphone Explorer
Maruszczyk (custom) Jake

Ashdown CTM 100
#2
Preamp tubes will change the tone of an amp more than the power tubes.
2002 PRS CE22
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2009 Epiphone G-400 (SH-4)
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#3
Quote by Fisheth24
But I'm not sure if that would be enough to get it to where I wanted, I was going to attempt to change the preamp tubes in it to JJ's but I don't think they'd make that much of a difference? Surely?


Preamp is where all your sound is at, son!

It'll make a massive difference if you switch out cheap, crappy tubes for the JJs.
I'm always screwing with my rig. Muh chilluns:
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Mesa Boogie Royal Atlantic, Diezel 2x12
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#4
It's not a dumble.
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#5
Quote by Guy_Mitchell
Preamp is where all your sound is at, son!

It'll make a massive difference if you switch out cheap, crappy tubes for the JJs.


Thanks, always good to have spares.

It's not cause I've used my V30's as a speaker choice, right?
Bass Gear:

Mensinger: Speesy
Fender Precision 1989 (CIJ Rosewood)
Fender Steve Harris (CIJ)
Lakland J Sonic 5
Epiphone Explorer
Maruszczyk (custom) Jake

Ashdown CTM 100
#6
If I were you I'd sell/trade my rig, (patiently, no need to settle) and start from scratch. That'll rejuvenate you.
Fender Mustang/Derfenstein DST> Boss Power Wah> Pedal Monsters Klone> Bogner Uberschall> Walrus Audio Janus> Randall RM20> Line 6 M9> Randall RM20
#7
Quote by Fisheth24
Thanks, always good to have spares.

It's not cause I've used my V30's as a speaker choice, right?

V30 work fine with the 800, I personally like the G12h30 with Marshall type amps.

I also have a 4x12 with Eminence V12's and I like it has a lot of punch, but I don't think they sound like a V30 really. They are a very smooth speaker without a harsh upper mid spike like the V30 is known for.

I also have a GB128 in a 1x12 and it is a nice Greenback style speaker but it has a much better bass response than the Celestion G12m25 does. That being said I don't know how it would pair with a V12
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
#8
Which JCM800?
Gilchrist custom
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#9
Quote by Fisheth24
Thanks, always good to have spares.

It's not cause I've used my V30's as a speaker choice, right?


Nope. Cab design can affect your tone a lot, though. Mainly the low end.

The other guys here can explain that a lot better than I can.
I'm always screwing with my rig. Muh chilluns:
Warmoth NRFR strat JB/Jazz
Mesa Boogie Royal Atlantic, Diezel 2x12
Turbo tuner, J Cantrell wah, Alesis 3630
Green Rhino, Wampler Velvet, Strymon ElCap/Lex, Phase 45
#10
Quote by Cathbard
Which JCM800?


It's a 1983 2203, vertical input one.
Bass Gear:

Mensinger: Speesy
Fender Precision 1989 (CIJ Rosewood)
Fender Steve Harris (CIJ)
Lakland J Sonic 5
Epiphone Explorer
Maruszczyk (custom) Jake

Ashdown CTM 100
#11
OK. I'd retube it and I don't think I'd run all V30's either. Throw a couple of T75's into the mix.
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
#12
Well it's an odd setup so I'm not surprised you dislike it. The JCM has a fizzy 80's metal high end sound, and the Blackouts have a modern wall-of-guitar metal sound, I wouldn't consider it a good mix.
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#13
I wouldn't call a 2203 fizzy. A 2210, sure, but not a 2203.
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
#14
Yeah the 2203 is what I'd call ballsy and punchy

I'd throw 2 G12h30's in with the V30's over 12T75's but that's all personal taste
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
#15
Yeah, they'd work too. Or even maybe a couple of Scumbacks. Something to take the curse off the upper mids. WGS make a T75 type thing don't they?
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
#16
Yeah, but I've never tried them
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
Where/what room do you play in? What preamp and poweramp volume do you play at?
Ive been dissastisfied with my gear at my house, and then have brought gear to friend's houses and noticed the tone was drastically different and better. Ive also found that turning my tube amps up louder in a shittily sound treated room have only made them sound harsh and jarring. However, a totally cranked tube amp outdoors in an open backyard was some of the best tones ive ever heard
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#18
You are probably underwhelmed with the JCM800 because you don't have it loud enough. It's pretty disappointing to me at most volumes EXCEPT \LOUD/ which is one reason I got rid of mine. In my last band situation it only sounded good outdoors on a big stage. In a bar it would send people out the door before it got to the sweet spot. On a big stage I played at that had around 2000 seats, a great PA and pro sound guys it was just set to purring and that was enough to match the drummer.

I find it a terrible gigging amp for most of the places I had to play. I wont ever knock it's studio capabilities. Just know you wont get "that JCM800 cranked" sound at bar volumes. If you are one of the few that gets to crank the thing up I envy you.
Last edited by cheesefries at Jun 3, 2014,
#19
i have a different experience/disagreement that doesn't really go with the crowd. but i had a few good OD's then i saw a bad monkey at a local shop the pulled off of the demo board for $15. i tried it from splawns to mesas even to a JTM 45. then i switch to something like (one of my favorites) a MI audio Blues Pro, dial it in and it was instantly better. i didn't like the bad monkey.

for a starter pedal its great, much cheaper than OD's from the $100-$150 range, good on a budget. but maybe try that. if you can find a store with an easy return policy (GC for example), buy an OD or two, see if you like them, bring back if you don't.

as far as basic 'tube screamers' go look into a green rhino from wayy huge, it is very tweakable.

my go to is a timmy, but you probably want the bass rolloff from the TS and mid spike, and the like which the tube screamer does. definitely helps out with a 2203.
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#20
Sounds like you need new pickups in your Schecter.

I would also try some other speakers with the V30s as others have said to tame that high mid. I had WGS's G12H30s and liked them.

If you like the AOR, you like the AOR. You don't have to like the Marshall better just because it's a Marshall. Lots of guys have used the AOR and sound fantastic. On that note, also check out the Peavey VTM.

Get rid of anything ElectroHarmonix, tube wise. They are ****ing terrible tubes. Put JJs everywhere, then mess with Mullard 12AX7s in your V1, and then move on to NOS stuff if you want to.
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#21
Join the club. We are all tone chasers to some extent.

Find a really excellent player that you respect and let him sit in on your gear for a while. It might surprise you as it certainly did surprise me. I thought my amp was lame until I heard this guy just completely wail through it. The problem wasn't the amp at all. The problem was the loose spacer holding up my guitar.

I just needed to tighten the spacer a bit and now the amp sounds amazing all the time. When trying to solve a problem, carefully identify the source of the problem first.
"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
Last edited by Cajundaddy at Jun 4, 2014,
#22
Good advice, I'll ask the guitarist in my band to come round, though he's always sounded terrible through my rig but at least decent/good through his Laney IRT60. No idea why that is, I think I may like the sound of that Laney more though...
Bass Gear:

Mensinger: Speesy
Fender Precision 1989 (CIJ Rosewood)
Fender Steve Harris (CIJ)
Lakland J Sonic 5
Epiphone Explorer
Maruszczyk (custom) Jake

Ashdown CTM 100
#23
Quote by trashedlostfdup
i have a different experience/disagreement that doesn't really go with the crowd. but i had a few good OD's then i saw a bad monkey at a local shop the pulled off of the demo board for $15. i tried it from splawns to mesas even to a JTM 45. then i switch to something like (one of my favorites) a MI audio Blues Pro, dial it in and it was instantly better. i didn't like the bad monkey.


It was actually a recommendation from you that led me to look into the Blues Pro a couple years ago, and it's been on my board ever since. Great pedal. I'd like to get my hands on a Super BP as well.

As far as the Bad Monkey, I've had mine on my board for about 8 years running at this point. For my more classic/southern rock tones I'll front end my amp with the Bad Monkey and for a more modern sound with a mid spike, I use the Blues Pro.

TS, my recommendations to you are:

- Look into swapping pickups. I'm personally not a fan of active pickups, but to each his own. You might find that a pickup swap does the trick.

- You might find that it's the speakers you're using that are preventing you from getting the tone you want.

- Try a different OD.


Aside from changing or adding something in your rig, I'd like to pose this question to you TS: Are you currently playing with a band?

I ask because in my experience the guitarists I see constantly making gear changes and complaining about dissatisfaction in their tone are generally not gigging musicians and rarely make music with others. There are fairly obvious reasons to why someone in such a situation would be continually unflattered by their tone.

First, the obvious; tube amps sound better when you're using them at gigging/band levels. If you're trying to use a higher wattage tube amp at bedroom levels, you're obviously not going to be able to hear the full tonal potential of the amplifier.

Next, and an underrated and generally overlooked aspect of an amplifier, is how the amp sits in a mix in the context of a band. Some amps sound fantastic by themselves but fail to impress when used in a band setting. Other amps might sound mediocre by themselves but sit perfectly and really shine through in a mix. A guitarist who isn't playing with other musicians doesn't get to hear this first hand.

Finally, I think there's a mental aspect to all of this, too. For a guitarist not playing in a band or heading their amp in the context of a mix, I believe it's easy to get caught up in tone chasing and losing focus of the most important part of playing guitar; which happens to be playing the guitar. I recommend that someone who finds themselves constantly tweaking knobs instead of making music find a tone that works (or two if you need clean/dirty that's not attainable by rolling back a volume knob/pedal) and spend a few days just playing the instrument. Don't touch the knobs on the amp, just make music. You'll hopefully be able to start focusing on playing music and the enjoyment of the action, and you'll probably find yourself becoming more comfortable in your playing. Remember, Good Tone is a byproduct of Good Playing.

EDIT: I see in the post above mine that you are in a band, which really renders anything in the second half of my post somewhat useless to you.
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#24
Quote by sjones
It was actually a recommendation from you that led me to look into the Blues Pro a couple years ago, and it's been on my board ever since. Great pedal. I'd like to get my hands on a Super BP as well.

As far as the Bad Monkey, I've had mine on my board for about 8 years running at this point. For my more classic/southern rock tones I'll front end my amp with the Bad Monkey and for a more modern sound with a mid spike, I use the Blues Pro.

TS, my recommendations to you are:

- Look into swapping pickups. I'm personally not a fan of active pickups, but to each his own. You might find that a pickup swap does the trick.

- You might find that it's the speakers you're using that are preventing you from getting the tone you want.

- Try a different OD.


Aside from changing or adding something in your rig, I'd like to pose this question to you TS: Are you currently playing with a band?

I ask because in my experience the guitarists I see constantly making gear changes and complaining about dissatisfaction in their tone are generally not gigging musicians and rarely make music with others. There are fairly obvious reasons to why someone in such a situation would be continually unflattered by their tone.

First, the obvious; tube amps sound better when you're using them at gigging/band levels. If you're trying to use a higher wattage tube amp at bedroom levels, you're obviously not going to be able to hear the full tonal potential of the amplifier.

Next, and an underrated and generally overlooked aspect of an amplifier, is how the amp sits in a mix in the context of a band. Some amps sound fantastic by themselves but fail to impress when used in a band setting. Other amps might sound mediocre by themselves but sit perfectly and really shine through in a mix. A guitarist who isn't playing with other musicians doesn't get to hear this first hand.

Finally, I think there's a mental aspect to all of this, too. For a guitarist not playing in a band or heading their amp in the context of a mix, I believe it's easy to get caught up in tone chasing and losing focus of the most important part of playing guitar; which happens to be playing the guitar. I recommend that someone who finds themselves constantly tweaking knobs instead of making music find a tone that works (or two if you need clean/dirty that's not attainable by rolling back a volume knob/pedal) and spend a few days just playing the instrument. Don't touch the knobs on the amp, just make music. You'll hopefully be able to start focusing on playing music and the enjoyment of the action, and you'll probably find yourself becoming more comfortable in your playing. Remember, Good Tone is a byproduct of Good Playing.

EDIT: I see in the post above mine that you are in a band, which really renders anything in the second half of my post somewhat useless to you.


I am but I play bass

Anyway, yeah. I do like to record from time to time, but I currently don't have an interface. My focusrite died on me. Boo.

Anyway, I dunno what the problem is. I think it is a mental thing, personally I really like the blackouts but each to his own!
Bass Gear:

Mensinger: Speesy
Fender Precision 1989 (CIJ Rosewood)
Fender Steve Harris (CIJ)
Lakland J Sonic 5
Epiphone Explorer
Maruszczyk (custom) Jake

Ashdown CTM 100
#25
Quote by Cajundaddy
Find a really excellent player that you respect and let him sit in on your gear for a while. It might surprise you as it certainly did surprise me. I thought my amp was lame until I heard this guy just completely wail through it. The problem wasn't the amp at all. The problem was the loose spacer holding up my guitar.
QFT. Funny how the tone is completely different when you put the guitar in capable hands.
#26
Quote by Cajundaddy
Join the club. We are all tone chasers to some extent.

Find a really excellent player that you respect and let him sit in on your gear for a while. It might surprise you as it certainly did surprise me. I thought my amp was lame until I heard this guy just completely wail through it. The problem wasn't the amp at all. The problem was the loose spacer holding up my guitar.

I just needed to tighten the spacer a bit and now the amp sounds amazing all the time. When trying to solve a problem, carefully identify the source of the problem first.


It's amazing how many of us have found this same "problem".

And how few are willing to admit it...

Well said!
“Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge.”
Charles Darwin
#27
dunno about pairing a gb128 with a v12. I didn't try it with your amp but it wasn't my favourite combo with the amps I did try it with. even a v30 with a greenback i'd only use in very specific situations. it can be a bit middy, and the power handling is all over the place with that combo.
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#28
Why do you need super high output pickups? Frankly, they sound like crap unless you use them through modern high gain amplifiers that make all guitars sound the same (I.e. Mesa, etc.)

When you plug it into a single channel, no frills amplifier, the unmusical, overly bassy and muddy tone is very apparent. You plug my Les Paul with Sheptone PAFS and a boost into a JCM 800, you will be anything but underwhelmed.
#29
Quote by patriotplayer90
Why do you need super high output pickups? Frankly, they sound like crap unless you use them through modern high gain amplifiers that make all guitars sound the same (I.e. Mesa, etc.)

When you plug it into a single channel, no frills amplifier, the unmusical, overly bassy and muddy tone is very apparent. You plug my Les Paul with Sheptone PAFS and a boost into a JCM 800, you will be anything but underwhelmed.


Not true, I tried four of these guitars and they all sounded different, it wasn't exactly a noticable thing for a lot of people but it was noticable for me. Can't speak from anything but personal experience.

Just because it's the guitar I like the sound of the best. I also have a Gibson Faded V, which I find to be a bit meh and a Vintage Modified Strat, which I've not plugged into the Marshall yet, but I will at somepoint to see if any of my other guitars just gel with the amp better
Bass Gear:

Mensinger: Speesy
Fender Precision 1989 (CIJ Rosewood)
Fender Steve Harris (CIJ)
Lakland J Sonic 5
Epiphone Explorer
Maruszczyk (custom) Jake

Ashdown CTM 100
#30
Quote by Fisheth24
Not true, I tried four of these guitars and they all sounded different, it wasn't exactly a noticable thing for a lot of people but it was noticable for me. Can't speak from anything but personal experience.

Just because it's the guitar I like the sound of the best. I also have a Gibson Faded V, which I find to be a bit meh and a Vintage Modified Strat, which I've not plugged into the Marshall yet, but I will at somepoint to see if any of my other guitars just gel with the amp better

Oh. I have heard many people sound good with pickups that have apocalyptic levels of output, but I never have been able to make them work for me. Or any hot pickup in general. So I guess I suck.

But I'm happy with my tone after many years of tinkering, so I guess that is worth something,
#31
Quote by patriotplayer90
Why do you need super high output pickups? Frankly, they sound like crap unless you use them through modern high gain amplifiers that make all guitars sound the same (I.e. Mesa, etc.)

When you plug it into a single channel, no frills amplifier, the unmusical, overly bassy and muddy tone is very apparent. You plug my Les Paul with Sheptone PAFS and a boost into a JCM 800, you will be anything but underwhelmed.

GTFO

that is the dumbest blanket statement I have heard in a while
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
#32
Quote by Robbgnarly
GTFO

that is the dumbest blanket statement I have heard in a while


I couldn't think of a way to respond without being rude, so thanks for picking up my slack...
“Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge.”
Charles Darwin
#34
Quote by juliusxxrock
I play a JCM 800 2204 '85 into a 2x12 cab with v30's.

I get a sharp tone that smoothens out a little bit when I turn up the volume.

yeah, but you need to replace your 12ax7's and it will get even better
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
#35
I realize there is some studio magic, but if you want to hear actives with a JCM 800 (likely at a higher volume), listen to a fire in Babylon by shadows fall. I have seen them at least 5 times, and their stage tone is indistinguishable from their recorded tone. Good song too.
WTLT 2014 GG&A

Quote by andersondb7
alright "king of the guitar forum"


Quote by trashedlostfdup
nope i am "GOD of the guitar forum" i think that fits me better.


Quote by andersondb7
youre just being a jerk man.



****** NEW NEW NEW!
2017-07-07 2017-07-07 Update and a Chat On Noise Constraints *** NEW FRIDAY 7/7
2017-04-13 RUN AWAY from COMPUTERS!!! TCE? RANT ALERT!!!
2017-03-02 - Guitar Philosophy 1001- Be Prepared For the Situation (Thursday 2017-03-02)
2017-02-21 How to Hot-Rod the Hell of your Stratocaster for $50! (Tuesday 2017-2-21)
Resentments and Rambling from a Guitar Junkie
---> http://trashedengineering.blogspot.com/
#37
Ok so, what I'vve just done is I have elevated my cab, maybe an EQ pedal might help?

Not completely happy with it, but messing with the EQ and putting it on a crate helped a lot!
Bass Gear:

Mensinger: Speesy
Fender Precision 1989 (CIJ Rosewood)
Fender Steve Harris (CIJ)
Lakland J Sonic 5
Epiphone Explorer
Maruszczyk (custom) Jake

Ashdown CTM 100