#1
Hi, I was given some advice on here about purchasing a new amp, and for my price range was advised on the jet city 22 watt amp head, and a Harley benton cab.

The only thing worrying me is the volume. I live with my Mum and Grandfather( I know, bit sad i'm 24 and still at home), and can have it at a reasonably loud volume, but not stupidly loud. Would buying an attenuator be a good option? Jet city make their own for around £100.

I have no experience with valve amplifiers, currently own a spider IV 75 which I now realise was a mistake. I will keep the spider for some of the fun sounds though.

Also, I enjoy many genres of music, mainly metal (think stuff like Slayer, in flames whoracle album, metallica) but I wish to also dabble in other genres, what pedals, if any, would I need to add to my budget? Remember I have never used pedals, am used to the effect built in to my Spider.

I hope this is enough information, as the only thing holding me back buying the amp is the volume worry.
#2
I have the 22 head & don't have any problems with using it for home practice - that's what the master volume controls are for

If you want to consider pedals to use with it, a tubescreamer would be your best first purchase.
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Last edited by GaryBillington at Oct 19, 2014,
#3
Do the tubes still get hot and create a nice distortion even with a master volume though? I wan't too sure. If so, would it make more sense to get the 50 watt, or will the 22 suffice?

Also, it is quite a cheap amp in relative terms, would it be as good as for example a dark terror? It will be a definite upgrade from the spider yes?
Last edited by conanwarrior at Oct 19, 2014,
#4
Quote by conanwarrior
Do the tubes still get hot and create a nice distortion even with a master volume though? I wan't too sure. If so, would it make more sense to get the 50 watt, or will the 22 suffice?

Also, it is quite a cheap amp in relative terms, would it be as good as for example a dark terror? It will be a definite upgrade from the spider yes?

I have actually heard from members here that the JCA50 will do lower volumes better than the JCA22

But like was said use the master volume and a Tubescreamer to boost the amp at lower volumes to get that nice wide open sound at bedroom levels.
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#5
Quote by conanwarrior
Do the tubes still get hot and create a nice distortion even with a master volume though? I wan't too sure. If so, would it make more sense to get the 50 watt, or will the 22 suffice?



Jet City is almost exact copy of Soldano SLO/Hot Rod circuit, the grand daddy of modern high gain amps. Which means it gets 90% of its tone from preamp and juicing up the power amp with volume is mostly extra. Now, since it is only single volume knob amp the volume controlling is going to be sensitive and volume ramps up fast. 22W or 50W it doesnt matter in this case, both will behave the same in this regard. If you are ever going to play in a band, definetly get the 50W.

Oh, and definetly buy a tubescreamer clone pedal, like Digitech Bad Monkey (my recommendation) or Harley Benton Vintage Overdrive, and use it to boost the amp for tighter metal tones.

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Last edited by MaaZeus at Oct 19, 2014,
#6
Quote by Robbgnarly
I have actually heard from members here that the JCA50 will do lower volumes better than the JCA22

I never did an A/B comparison between those two Jet City models, but I can tell you that for lower volumes I prefer my Ampeg GVT52-112 in tetrode mode (50watts) than in triode mode (25watts). It just sounds better to me.
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Last edited by Linkerman at Oct 19, 2014,
#7
Coming from a JCA50 owner here. I will not try to compare the 50 to the 20 watt head but I will say that you can get a nice sound at fairly low volumes with my 50 watt head. There is no denying that it sounds better cranked, but that is the same with all amplifiers. A cranked volume knob just sounds better and opens the amp up more. You'll never find an amp that sounds equally as good on low volume as it does on loud because our ears just enjoy a bit more volume in general. Take from that what you wish.
#8
how loud is "reasonably loud"? I run my jet city (50 watt head) at home volumes and it sounds pretty good. But my "home volume" is probably louder than loud TV levels.
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Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
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#9
Reasonably loud would be louder than a loud TV, I can run a home theatre system full blast playing music with no complaints.
#10
Quote by Dave_Mc
how loud is "reasonably loud"? I run my jet city (50 watt head) at home volumes and it sounds pretty good. But my "home volume" is probably louder than loud TV levels.

+1 Thank you MF for the stupid deal!

Dave, have you replaced your JCA50 head's preamp tubes and which speakers do you use/like with it?

The 100W head works well with the Soldano 412 with Emi Legend V1216s or a 212 with EVM-12Ls.

#11
That's plenty loud, you can definitely get the amp cooking at those volumes.

I would not bother with an attenuator. They get mentioned a lot because the idea is good in theory, but in practice they are too disruptive to be useful for most people.
#12
Ah thats cool then, I didn't know if it was stupidly loud. I think I shall have myself a new toy very soon .
#13
Quote by conanwarrior
Reasonably loud would be louder than a loud TV, I can run a home theatre system full blast playing music with no complaints.


I don't know what your home theatre system is, but if it's anything like mine (which is years old), I'm with colin, I think that should be loud enough to justify the jet city (though personal preference plays a part too, lower volume tube amp tones seem to offend some people more than others ).

Quote by Ippon
+1 Thank you MF for the stupid deal!

Dave, have you replaced your JCA50 head's preamp tubes and which speakers do you use/like with it?

The 100W head works well with the Soldano 412 with Emi Legend V1216s or a 212 with EVM-12Ls.



I never got round to changing the preamp tubes. I probably actually have a few JJ preamp tubes lying around, too.

Yeah I use the V12s mainly (though the 8 ohm versions, in a parallel-wired 2x12 so 4 ohms overall). It sounded pretty good with my heritage g12h30s too, but I slightly preferred the v12s (I think, I'd need to try it again to be sure), and I'm lazy and generally just leave the amp plugged in to the speakers I like best.

I found it slightly pickier with cabs than my Laney... but that could well be the stock tubes' fault.
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Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#14
The home theatre system is pretty loud, think a fair quality stereo on loud.

I'l probably get a bad monkey to go with it, what other pedals should I go for? I'l want a chorus, not sure what else.
#16
Quote by conanwarrior
The home theatre system is pretty loud, think a fair quality stereo on loud.

I'l probably get a bad monkey to go with it, what other pedals should I go for? I'l want a chorus, not sure what else.


I possibly like a boss sd1 with it slightly more than a bad monkey. But they're definitely in the same ballpark, it's not that the BM is bad and the SD1 amazing. Also now I think of it the problem with the SD1 is that it has bypass bleed in bypass, and benefits from having another buffer (or buffered pedal) in front of it (which cures it, but which is unnecessary faff and added expense if you don't already have one). The (slightly) cheaper Daphon EOD-20 is a clone of it and doesn't seem to have the bypass bleed (at least, mine doesn't), but then I'd suspect it's not made quite as well as the boss (other than the bypass design flaw, of course!), and the boss (when it's on) probably sounds marginally better, it has a bit more level boost on tap (which is useful if using it as a boost).

If you're playing at lower home volumes I find having a boost on at all times is pretty useful, it improves saturation etc. for heavier tones. for that I prefer a more transparent overdrive... on the cheap, a digitech screamin blues is probably the best, it's around ~£20 on thomann (similar price to the bad monkey). I'd leave it on all (or most) of the time, and then kick in the SD or bad monkey for lead tones (I stack the more transparent OD into the TS or SD1, but you can try both ways to see which you prefer... I didn't notice much difference ).

Other good pedals which are cheapish at the moment on thomann are the digitech/hardwire tube overdrive (~£45), Nobels ODR-1 (the ODR-S may well be too, and is a bit cheaper, but I haven't tried it) and the Visual Sound Route 808. The route 808 is more or less a tubescreamer with a few tweaks (I haven't tried it), the Nobels ODR-1 and Hardwire sort of (IMO, and assuming I'm not doing something silly with their settings) straddle the line between the middier, more compressed tubescreamer thing, and those more transparent ODs. If you only wanted one OD pedal, they're worth considering. Personally I found a more transparent OD pedal combined with the TS or SD1 suited me better (though you may disagree).

Regarding other pedals, it's really up to you, what type(s) of music you play and which tones you want- however, any pedals which you might end up putting in the FX loop (such as modulation (chorus, phaser, flanger etc.) and time-based fx like delay and reverb) you need to be careful with. The Jet City has a slightly weird, line-level loop and not all pedals work in there. There's a list here of pedals which are known to work (I make no guarantee as to the accuracy of the info in that thread, I'm not even registered on that forum, someone just posted the link one day and I thought it was useful so I bookmarked it) which probably isn't exhaustive, but at least there are a few options there to consider.

http://www.guitarampboard.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=5&t=1615
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Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
Last edited by Dave_Mc at Oct 20, 2014,
#17
Quote by icanhasgodmode
Electro Harmonix Small Clone for chorus, have one and love it

I love the EHX Small Clone, too.
I've had a couple of other, more expensive chorus pedals, and when I tried it I liked it so much I immediately sold the MXR Stereo Chorus I had at the time to buy a Small Clone.
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Last edited by Linkerman at Oct 20, 2014,
#18
According to that link I posted, though, the small clone doesn't work in the loop. That might not be catastrophic, though, since chorus (as with most modulation) is one of the pedal types where you can kind of make a personal judgement call as to whether it sounds better in the loop or in front (though it will sound different, assuming you're using amp distortion), but it's still nice to know you have the option.

Unless the small clone sounds perfect for you out front, of course.
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Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#19
This was designed for the RM100 which also has a line level loop so it should work perfectly well on the JCA. It drops the FX send to instrument level and then boosts it back up again to line level for feeding back into the return. It makes pedals that need instrument level useable in the loop.

http://www.jadedfaithmods.com/s.t.e.p.-pedal.html
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#20
Good point. I think morley does one too (never tried it, no idea how good it is). EDIT: http://www.morleypedals.com/delc.html £70 on Thomann. Not super-dear, but it is the price of at least one decent pedal. You can get either the Hardwire Reverb or Delay for less than a tenner more than that, for example (assuming he wanted either of those).

Again, though, a bit of a faff and extra expense if you're just starting to collect pedals (much like my SD1 suggestion ). Unless you absolutely hate the tone of the ones which are known to work (or absolutely love the tones of ones known not to, and can't get that tone from any other reasonably-priced pedal), they're probably a handier solution.

But it's nice to know there is a fairly simple solution, too.
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Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
Last edited by Dave_Mc at Oct 20, 2014,
#21
The need to put things in the loop is way overstated anyway. I've run everything out front at gigs many many times and gotten away with it - including things that people say must be in the loop. Sure delay sounds a bit better in the loop but it's far from unusable out front.
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#22
Quote by Cathbard
The need to put things in the loop is way overstated anyway. I've run everything out front at gigs many many times and gotten away with it - including things that people say must be in the loop. Sure delay sounds a bit better in the loop but it's far from unusable out front.

Completely agreed.

I usually run everything (including delays) in front of the amp for convenience reasons, and it sounds perfectly fine.
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#23
I've had my JCA22H head for about a year now. I love it, highly recommended. I play through a 2x12 and it's more than loud enough to keep up with the drummer and bassist I jam with. Like everyone has said, it sounds BETTER cranked, but still sounds really good at lower volume. If you want clean headroom however you should look elsewhere. With the gain most of the way down on the crunch channel it'll do "clean-ish" sounds with the master volume up, but there's some breakup/crunch no matter what. Which is fine with me, if I wanted a clean amp I'd buy a Fender.

Mine has JJ power tubes installed already when I bought it. I guess compared to sound samples online it sounds a little less scooped, but there are so many other variables (guitar, cab, how the clip was recorded, my computer speakers, ect) that it's hard to say what the difference really amounts to. I've actually never tried one with stock tubes myself.

tl;dr: Buy one now!
#24
Quote by Cathbard
The need to put things in the loop is way overstated anyway. I've run everything out front at gigs many many times and gotten away with it - including things that people say must be in the loop. Sure delay sounds a bit better in the loop but it's far from unusable out front.


yeah you often see people say that even modulation pedals have to be in the loop... i'd say it's more 50:50 on them, and depends on the tone you want. definitely not "they have to go in the loop!"

delay... yeah probably better in the loop (at least for me personally) if you're using a fair bit of gain from the amp. unusable out front? probabably not. but better in the loop. which is basically what you said.

i've never even got as far as trying the loop with my jet city or laney (or genz benz but then i run it cleanish and i think i have it clean enough not to matter). though admittedly i don't really bother using delay etc. that much with them.
I'm an idiot and I accidentally clicked the "Remove all subscriptions" button. If it seems like I'm ignoring you, I'm not, I'm just no longer subscribed to the thread. If you quote me or do the @user thing at me, hopefully it'll notify me through my notifications and I'll get back to you.
Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?