Page 1 of 2
#1
If you remember, I posted a thread about what the best Heavy Metal Distortion pedal. I'm back. A year later with much more experience. I'm looking to get a good amp. My price range is $1,200 at most. I have to be able to get it new, unless I can find a used Mesa Boogie Dual/Triple Rectifier Half-Stack for that price. Anyways, so far, I've found:

Randall KH120RHS Kirk Hammett 120 watt Half Stack: $850

and a

Line 6 Spider IV 150 watt Half Stack: $700
(I'm not too familiar with how good modeling amps are, explain please)

I currently have a Marshall MG15 DFX, and I need to know what I can get for around a grand that will have an incredibly heavy sound with good sounding distortion.

I play Avenged Sevenfold and Metallica, and I need a Half-Stack.

EDIT: I live in central california in the US. I'll settle for a combo if it's any good for the price.
Last edited by asalazar1664 at Jul 24, 2014,
#2
used: Peavey JSX/6505; Marshall DSL JCM2000, Mesa 5:25; Randall MTS (with the modules), Fender/EVH 5150 III amp

New - probably look into the 6505 combo, Traynor, Carvin V3, the Randall is probably good.

A HUGE "NO" on anything Line6.
#3
+1 on the Carvin V3. That amp will do nearly anything you want it to, and will do it well.
#4
What country are you in? Because that is way over priced in the US (new both are ~$500)

Line 6 makes some great products, the Spider is not one of them. That Randall is also a POS.
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
#5
Where are you located? We could take a look around on your local Craigslist.
I'm Mitch, I like making guitar and bass gear reviews/comparisons on YouTube
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#6
$700 for a spider?!!! Thats insanity!
Fender Mustang/Derfenstein DST> Boss Power Wah> Pedal Monsters Klone> Bogner Uberschall> Walrus Audio Janus> Randall RM20> Line 6 M9> Randall RM20
#7
Why do you want a half-stack that bad? I play a quarter-stack and I drown all other instruments if my amp's volume is any higher than 11 o'clock.

That Line 6 and Randall KH are quite bad.. I mean.. you can do tons better for the buck.
Plus on the Carvin V3 and JSX, good amps.
I suggest checking out Laney's Ironheart series.
Gear pics

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Last edited by Sakke at Jul 24, 2014,
#8
Quote by Sakke
Why do you want a half-stack that bad? I play a quarter-stack and I drown all other instruments if my volume is any higher than 11 o'clock.

I have used a 4x12 for 10+ yrs and I have no reason to stop. It sounds good, it projects well, the low-end is very nice. So why would I not use one.

and your band must be like Kenny G/Michael Bolton quiet
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
#9
Yes, we need to know where in the world you're located. Can't possibly be the US with those prices.
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
#11
Also, I want a half-stack because I just like how big it looks, but I'll settle for a combo if it's a good one for the price. And I can buy ONLY from a retailer like Guitar Center or Mesa Boogie in Hollywood, CA.
#12
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
#14
Quote by asalazar1664
It has to be new unless it's a Mesa Boogie Dual/Triple Rectifier.

Why?
The JSX has a very Mesa tone to it and is very versatile.
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
#16
I can only buy through Guitar Center and it has to be new because my grandma (the one who is paying for it) absolutely won't buy used gear because it's always from out of state and it gets complicated buying it and she won't deal with it. And the Mesa Boogie Dual/Triple Rectifiers can be found at the Mesa Boogie store across the street from the GC in Hollywood, CA, so I am able to buy it there nearby. So that's why.
#17
Quote by asalazar1664
I live in central California in the United States.

Look up Carvin.com for closest store - they have one in Sacramento last time I was there, good idea to go and try their stuff. I think the V3 is definitely a winner, also some of their other amps, like the Legacy, especially if you get the original used is like a Marshall JCM800 for quarter the price.
#18
Quote by asalazar1664
I can only buy through Guitar Center and it has to be new because my grandma (the one who is paying for it) absolutely won't buy used gear because it's always from out of state and it gets complicated buying it and she won't deal with it. And the Mesa Boogie Dual/Triple Rectifiers can be found at the Mesa Boogie store across the street from the GC in Hollywood, CA, so I am able to buy it there nearby. So that's why.

Guitar center sells used gear too. In fact, sometimes their prices are better than craigslist pricing. And a 30 day money back guarantee (which I have been exploiting recently). Sure as hell nothing wrong with using it as an excuse to get a Mesa though.
Fender Mustang/Derfenstein DST> Boss Power Wah> Pedal Monsters Klone> Bogner Uberschall> Walrus Audio Janus> Randall RM20> Line 6 M9> Randall RM20
#19
Quote by asalazar1664
I can only buy through Guitar Center and it has to be new because my grandma (the one who is paying for it) absolutely won't buy used gear because it's always from out of state and it gets complicated buying it and she won't deal with it. And the Mesa Boogie Dual/Triple Rectifiers can be found at the Mesa Boogie store across the street from the GC in Hollywood, CA, so I am able to buy it there nearby. So that's why.


Buying used from Guitar Center is EXACTLY like buying new from Guitar Center. It's a really good system. You can go into the store, order it and check out like any other purchase (it's very helpful and fast if you give them the Item # of the particular amp you're looking at, they can look it up right away and order it instead of having to search for it), and have it shipped to the store where you can go and pick it up. Or have it shipped to your door if you like. And they offer extended warranty as well, as well as a built in 30 day warranty in case you don't like it or it has an issue or anything like that. Buying used from Guitar Center is extremely safe, and on top of that most of their prices are very good.


As for the Peavey JSX, I owned one for a while, and that amp is probably the closest you're going to get to the Mesa feel/tone on a budget. It has that same kind of real big low end sag that makes Rectos unique.


As for cabs, here's a great deal on a good condition Line 6 Spider Valve cab - $290 http://www.guitarcenter.com/Line-6-Used--Line-6--Spider-Valve-4X12-Slant---Guitar-Cabinet-110229217-i3799853.gc

The Spider Valve 412 is loaded with V30s, same speakers Mesa and Orange cabs have, which saturate metal rigs.


Besides the JSX, I think this would be a good and cool amp for the tones you're going for, and a good price on it too - Blackstar Series One 100 $800 http://www.guitarcenter.com/In-Store-Used-USED-BLACKSTAR-ONE-SERIES-100-109506392-i3399255.gc

These would all work well for you too:

Marshall JCM2000 DSL100 - $650 http://www.guitarcenter.com/Marshall-Used-Marshall-JCM2000-DSL100-100W-Tube-Guitar-Amp-Head-110248089-i3854812.gc

Marshall JVM205H - $800 http://www.guitarcenter.com/Marshall-Used--Marshall--JVM205H-50W---Tube-Guitar-Amp-Head-110223834-i3834964.gc

Jet City JCA100H - $375 http://www.guitarcenter.com/Jet-City-Amplification-Used-Jet-City-Amplification-JCA100H-100W-Tube-Guitar-Amp-Head-110281983-i3835052.gc

Marshall 1960AV (V30s) - $400 http://www.guitarcenter.com/Marshall-Used--Marshall-2004-1960AV-4X12-280W-Stereo-Slant--Black-Guitar-Cabinet-110234735-i3845358.gc


Unfortunately, if you absolutely must go new, you won't be able to get a good half stack new from Guitar Center. Good cabs are expensive, from what GC offers, the cheapest one they have with professional speakers is the Line 6 Spider Valve 4x12, at $700. Good amps are expensive too, the cheapest amp I see that I would actually recommend to you to do what you want is the Laney IRT60H, at $650. Those together puts you at $1350 before tax or any accessories (you'll need a speaker cable, minimum).

If you can live with a quarter stack (2x12 cab), you can get the VHT Standard 212 (G12H30s, my preferred speaker), which is $420 http://www.guitarcenter.com/VHT-The-Standard-212-2x12-Guitar-Speaker-Cabinet-107217960-i1884894.gc

And then also be able to afford the Laney Ironheart $650 http://www.guitarcenter.com/Laney-IRT60H-60W-Tube-Guitar-Amp-Head-J00132-i3286184.gc

And a speaker cable (do NOT connect your amp and cab with a regular instrument cable. There is a difference.) 3' - $14 http://www.guitarcenter.com/Livewire-16-Gauge-Speaker-Cable-100296857-i1165543.gc
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 Jul 25, 2014,
#20
Here is a Mesa Single head for $799 www.guitarcenter.com/Mesa-Boogie-Used-Mesa-Boogie-Single-Rectifier-50W-Tube-Guitar-Amp-Head-110235078-i3845112.gc

Then get one of the cabs Offworld listed and you'll have a great rig for your budget
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
#21
I think Carvin Vai sig speakers have Celestions and are priced very well. I'd probably go that route unless you get an used 1960 Marshall cab (probably won't be able to afford one new).

I actually had a rather pleasant experience ordering GC used from a store in 3 States over - the order came flawlessly packaged and was just as described (a guitar). I actually like the douche-free (no salesmen) experience.
#22
The Line 6 Spider Valve looks good, so now, if I get that, I can afford to get an amp head no more expensive than $400-$500, unless I can get a cheaper, but still really good cab. I'll have a thousand to split between a cab and head. So, what else can you suggest (MUST be new)

Also, doesn't the head determine the sound much more than the cab?
Last edited by asalazar1664 at Jul 25, 2014,
#24
Quote by asalazar1664
The Line 6 Spider Valve looks good, so now, if I get that, I can afford to get an amp head no more expensive than $400-$500, unless I can get a cheaper, but still really good cab. I'll have a thousand to split between a cab and head. So, what else can you suggest (MUST be new)

Also, doesn't the head determine the sound much more than the cab?



Yes, but the cab is basically a limiter on the potential of a cab. If you use a cab with cheap speakers, you'll never hear the full potential of the amp you're using - typically cheap cabs cause mudiness and fizziness, which can make an amp seem far worse than it actually is.

I just found this. Genz Benz TS-412 (Eminence Private Jacks) - $411 http://www.guitarcenter.com/Genz-Benz-Tribal-Series-TS-412-200W-4X12-Guitar-Extension-Cabinet-481179-i1477923.gc

Get that with the Laney IRT60H - $650 www.guitarcenter.com/Guitar-Amplifier-Heads-Guitar-Amplifiers,New-Gear.gc?extup=500-700&ipp=25&o=1
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
Quote by asalazar1664


Absolutely not. "Celestions" is a buzz word to make them seem better than they are - like any company, they make good products, and bad products. Anything with "special voiced", "custom designed", "[brand name] speaker without a specific model name" are all red flag buzz terms for crap.

Quick rundown of good celestions:

V30
G12T75
G12H30
G12K100

not exhaustive, but that's pretty much all you're going to find in production cabs.
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
#26
So, I need lists of what can add to $1,000. So. Head+Cab=$1,000 or less. Again, MUST be new.
#27
Are there any NEW American made Peavey or U.K. Made Marshall Half-Stacks or Combo amps that I can get for $1,000 before tax? Or not, as long as they're not infamous for having high out of factory failure rates like the Peavey 6505+ 112 Combo.
#29
I've looked up a few more sets and so far I've found:

$330 Marshall MG100FX 100W Head (MG series sucks I know)
$400 Line 6 Spider IV 150W Head (I need a better explanation of why Line 6 sucks)
$600 Peavey ValveKing II 100H 100W Head

and

$450 Peavey ValveKing 4x12 Cabinet
$700 Line 6 Spider Valve 4x12 Cabinet (This is the good one, right?)
$900 Marshall 1960 4x12 Cabinet (This is the best one, right?)

So, Each pair adds to around a thousand more or less. Tell me what you think and suggest other pairs if they add to no more than a thousand NEW.
#30
^ no no no fucking no please no


for all that is still worthy in this world do no buy any of those

(ok the VK is not bad but damn brother find something else ploix)

EDIT: OK, just realized you cannot buy via Craigslist. ANyway you can get GramGs to change her mind on that? That will def open things up.

Otherwise, folllow Offworld's and Robb's advice. They know what they are talking about. A Single Rec would be tight. Good stuff.
#31
Last edited by 311ZOSOVHJH at Jul 26, 2014,
#32
^ I don't think there's any swaying his Grandma, 311. Seems pretty firm.

TS, I stress again - you simply cannot get a GOOD half stack for $1000 new. Good cabs start at $700, and good heads are just as much.

I again urge you to consider a quarter stack with a 2x12 cab.

The $650 Laney Ironheart is the cheapest full sized head you can get new that will actually do what you want.


If combo amps are on the table, that's a different story, and you actually can get a good combo new in your budget.

I had a quick look, but I only see this, unfortunately. Line 6 Spider Valve Mk.II 112 - $600 http://www.guitarcenter.com/Line-6-Spider-Valve-112-MKII-40W-1x12-Guitar-Combo-Amp-105482897-i1475493.gc

You'll also want this to go with it, to control the FX and change the chanels - Line 6 FBV Express Mk.II - $100 http://www.guitarcenter.com/Line-6-FBV-Express-MKII-Guitar-Footswitch-105462949-i1471775.gc
Now, I am not a fan of the Spider Valve by any means, but I know some people have managed to squeeze good tones out of them.

This amp is a good investment, because being a modeler, it can cover a large amount of ground, and is extremely versatile. Even if a couple years down the road you want to upgrade again and get something more specific, or even a better modeler, this amp is still viable as a backup or practice amp.


There's two other amps you can afford that are good amps, but do not come with good speakers - you'll want to get a good speaker for them, and swap it out.

Peavey 6505+ 112 - $600 http://www.guitarcenter.com/Peavey-6505--112-60W-1x12--Tube-Combo-Guitar-Amp-105612089-i1445921.gc

Marshall DSL40C - $700 http://www.guitarcenter.com/Marshall-DSL40C-40W-All-Tube-1x12-Guitar-Combo-Amp-108261009-i2652512.gc

Luckily, Guitar Center recently started carrying WGS speakers, which are fantastically priced speakers "based on" good Celestions and other good speakers, but with slight EQ tweaks so they are slightly different. But still good quality speakers. These are the two that you should consider if you want to upgrade:

WGS Veteran 30 (Celestion V30 clone) - $70 http://www.guitarcenter.com/Warehouse-Guitar-Speakers-Veteran-30-12--60W-British-Invasion-Guitar-Speaker-J01885-i3387504.gc

WGS HM75 (Celestion G12T75 clone) - $70 http://www.guitarcenter.com/Warehouse-Guitar-Speakers-HM75-12--75W-British-Invasion-Guitar-Speaker-J01882-i3387500.gc

The V30 has a high mid spike (less prominent in the WGS version) and is the speaker of choice for modern (2000s-present) metal. The T75 has a mid scoop, and is what you hear in the thrash and heavy metal tones of the 80s and 90s. Both are great speakers, but it's just up to what your preference is. You can't go wrong with either.
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 Jul 26, 2014,
#33
Quote by asalazar1664
Are there any NEW American made Peavey or U.K. Made Marshall Half-Stacks or Combo amps that I can get for $1,000 before tax? Or not, as long as they're not infamous for having high out of factory failure rates like the Peavey 6505+ 112 Combo.

No, a MIA or MIE cab will cost your budget.

You do realize that GC offers a warranty on all used gear (you just select the option) then it is like getting a new amp with no issues to worry about.


You will not find what you want at your budget unless you can get used.

If you really want a MIA amp for your budget Carvin is the only company I can think of.

This is a 50 watt head and a 4x12 cab, both brand new for $999
www.carvinguitars.com/products/V3M412

This Marshall setup would work decent and is $750
www.guitarcenter.com/Marshall-DSL15H---MX212-15W-2x12-All-Tube-Guitar-Stack-w--Celestion-Seventy-80-s-H98887-i3174785.gc


I'm not big on Carvin amps, but they do have a few retail stores in CA you might be able to try it at.
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
Quote by asalazar1664
But, I still need an explanation of WHY the amps I listed are bad.

Because they don't sound very good that's why

The Peavey VK is decent, but the cab is not very good.

The MG plain sucks, the Spider seems cool at first, but the sounds get old quick.

The Spider valve 4x12 is a good cab and IMO is better than the Marshall 1960 that your looking at.

look at what I listed for new, those are probably your best bets.
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
#36
The VK will be okay, probably for a long time...even with matching cab...

Wasn't there also a Peavey Butcher reissue that might work for him? I am bit behind on my Peaveys...

How about Jet City amps? Didn't they have something that did the brootz well?

Personally I'll go for brand new Carvin V3 and a 2x12 or persuade grandma to drop a little more dough and walk out with Mesa Express 5:50 combo...

The Laney is also a great option...

After a long history of using 4x12 last few years I went down to 2x12, and honestly with the properly tuned cab you don't really feel the difference.

At this point I say get the amp you want and settle on smaller cabinet, until you save up and trade later...you might discover that you don't need to.
#37
^ Yeah peavey has the butcher, but it is $1200 for the head
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
Guitar Center doesn't have any new Jet Citys besides the JCA2112RC, which isn't the good high gain model.

I am very hesitant to recommend the ValveKing, because most people who want them think they're getting a 6505 for half the cost, but for A7X & Metallica the ValveKing might actually be okay. Still can't afford it and a good 412 though.

Quote by asalazar1664
But, I still need an explanation of WHY the amps I listed are bad.


Because they don't sound good, and after the excitement period wears off in a month or two, you're going to realize that they sound bad and wish you had got something different.

We've all gone through that the hard way - we're just trying to start you off strong and try to help you avoid that cash sink.
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
#39
The VK is OK at best. Not a bad amp just not a great amp. I sunk time and money into mine and ended up selling it. The Valveking speakers are horrid. Don't waste your money on a VK cab. I'd rather have a Vypyr 120 head TBH. Those amps kill.


PS: Most all of the Line 6 gear is great - it is just the base Spiders that suck balls.
#40
Quote by diabolical
The VK will be okay, probably for a long time...even with matching cab...

Wasn't there also a Peavey Butcher reissue that might work for him? I am bit behind on my Peaveys...

How about Jet City amps? Didn't they have something that did the brootz well?

Personally I'll go for brand new Carvin V3 and a 2x12 or persuade grandma to drop a little more dough and walk out with Mesa Express 5:50 combo...

The Laney is also a great option...

After a long history of using 4x12 last few years I went down to 2x12, and honestly with the properly tuned cab you don't really feel the difference.

At this point I say get the amp you want and settle on smaller cabinet, until you save up and trade later...you might discover that you don't need to.

She was originaly firm on a $600 budget, and still was very hesitant, I BARELY got her to $1,000.She doesn't have even the faintest idea of what the deal is with guitar stuff, she's too dense. I'm trying to get a Metallica or Avenged Sevenfold sound. Synyster Gates used Marshall JCM800/JCM900/JCM2000TSL and now uses his signature Hellwin's. They all cost too much new, Zacky Vengeance uses Jet City's and Schecter Hellraiser amps. James Hetfield uses a Mesa Boogie Triple Rectifier simultaneously with a Diezel VH4S, Kirk Hammett uses the Mesa Boogie Mk IIC simultaneously with his signature Randall. That's why I'm trying to buy from those brands.
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