#1
Ok guys, I have messed around long enough, and I am finally ready to find a beautiful amplifier to settle down with and marry, and make beautiful little musics with. In all seriousness, I have been researching and researching, and all of this researching has brought up more questions than answers. I am fighting between a tube head, and a solid state head, I know most of you, at this point, are thinking "how is that even a fight, tube wins, period" and understandably so, I mean they are the gold standard for rock tone and distortion and what not, hence the mind war going on inside my head. BUT on the other hand, I am looking for a good amp to play alternative rock, not unlike that of Red Jumpsuit Apparatus, and Breaking Benjamin. That being said, I need the head room for a good clean tone at higher volumes for Gigs. With a solid state amp, they have more headroom than tube amplifiers, and at my $500 budget, I can get a decent 150 watt for a louder clean tone, where as if i want a good tube, I am looking at around 20 watt tube heads, which I know tubes can get louder than Solid States, and a 20 watt would be loud enough to gig, but I can only crank that volume so far before the it throws some distortion in there, cutting my head room down. Not to mention tubes take money to upkeep, and I do not know how much money it takes to keep them up to par I.E. buy new tubes at $30 a pop. Now the reasons I would want a tube is because i know that the distortion on it is clean and smooth, and also the cleans are warmer, but me playing mostly Alt Rock, I use plenty of pedals for distortion, and effects, and whatnot. Remember through this that I am looking with a $500 budget, willing to go used in decent condition, and prefer a head/cab for several reasons, biggest one being is replacing the head or the cab and mix and matching until I find my dream tone instead of just going through combo by combo, I know I can get a better combo for the price than I can a stack, that's not really my point here though, so please stray away from trying to sway me torward a combo. So here are my many questions!

1) If I go with a Tube amp, how much power in wattage would I need to fill a decent sized gig, before going too high whereas to distort the tone?

2) Since I am using solid state pedals plugging into the amp for most of my distortion, and effects, would it be pointless to get a tube since the main point of the tube is the beautiful distortion?

3) If I get a tube, should I ditch the distortion pedals all together and just use the tubes distortion?

4) I understand a lot of solid state distortions are fuzzy and whatnot, but would it be the same if I used an Overdrive and Distortion pedal rather than the ss's stock distortion?

5) If I go the solid state route, what would be a good SS head to get that would have a versatile enough tone for alt rock? (I was looking at a Randall head but heard those were more for heavy rock and metal)

6) If I go the tube route, what would be a good tube head for what I'm looking for? (good cleans and decent distortion)

7) I was looking at a Jet City 22h, loved the tone on that, would that be enough power for a good sized gig and have enough head room, or would I need more to have the head room I want. Opinions?

Please explain answers, When it comes to guitar hardware, I'm very knowledgeable, As for Amplifier and sound, not so much, Any help is appreciated. Thankyou!
#2
There is nothing wrong with using pedals with a tube amp, some purists may argue the point, but if it was good enough for Stevie Ray , Hendrix , Gilmore, Clapton and countless others i call BS on that notion.
Most SS amps do not take drive pedals well in my experience . A 50 or 70 watt Fender Bassman head will slay a 150 watt SS amp in terms of sheer volume and dynamics (with the exception of some SS amps that run in pure class A mode) and never sound shrill doing so. It has beautiful cleans and good meaty drive when cranked. Its a great pedal platform and if you get later one with a master volume you can even use it at home with pedals while still getting some of the amps natual breakup.
The Marhsall Plexi was copied off the Bassman circuit and most bassman's can be modded to be sound like a plexi or other amps if thats what you want. There really is nothing like a well designed circuit with 6L6 tubes for cleans.

If you go the tube route there are many great options, but i would not go with anything below 30 watts preferably 50 watts. unless you know you will always be miking into a PA. Just my two cents.
Last edited by Tone is King at Jan 4, 2015,
#3
1. Depends on how clean you want it, the speaker efficiency, pickups, your drummer, lots of factors beyond just the head wattage. The good news is that $500 can almost certainly get you a tube amp with enough headroom for your needs, and most tube amps that aren't baby practice amps can handle your average medium sized gig.

2. No. Tube amps and pedals get along great.

3. Not necessarily. You might find that some pedals are unnecessary or don't complement the amp very well, but you won't know what works and what doesn't until you try them with the amp.

4. Not sure I understand the question. In general tube amps distort more smoothly than SS amps when you crank the input (like with an OD) but if you use a distortion pedal it's going to be creating its own distortion. So if the pedal is inherently fuzzy the amp isn't going to fix that.

5. Randall actually sounds fine for what you want. Some of the older Peavey SS heads are great too, and can be found cheap used.

6. Jet city, Bugera, Peavey Classic 30/50, Peavey XXX/JSX, Valveking, Vypyr.

7. Probably, but see #1.
#4
I'd say you are WAY overthinking this problem and getting tripped up on a lot of internet forum mythology.

Who are your favorite guitarists with guitar tone nirvana and what amps do they use? Start there.

Remember that as a good rule of thumb, 50w tube = 150w SS in terms of useable clean headroom. It does vary somewhat by brand but it is a useful ballpark comparison.

Most SS pedals were DESIGNED to run into tube amps so they are a match made in heaven.


A few personal favorite gig quality heads:
Mesa 50 Cal
Mesa F-50
Fender Bassman

Good luck!
"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
#5
If you're concerned about tubes dying I'd recommend a Cathode based amp so you can just change type of tube without any real concern about biasing it.

IRRC the Orange Terror series does this.
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
not likely you'll get an amp that will be worth marrying for $500, perhaps a an amp that won't scare you when you wake up in the morning and really get to see it without beer goggles

in order to get the most for your money I think you have to be open to a whole new approach to what you are doing sound wise. buying an amp to work with your current pedals is often not the way to go. the amp is the backbone of your sound so should come first. it's cheaper and easier to replace pedals along the way than amps. in my younger days I did use pedals for distortion but that was before high gain amps were affordable. a Rat in front of a mid 70s Bassman head (with master volume) worked fine in the mid 80s for the band I was in. now I'd rather get my distortion from the amp (with some fine tuning from an overdrive). if you lean more toward the metal side then this really is the way to go. if you play more on the clean side then using one of the higher gain overdrives may work fine. I find that many distortion pedals sound fine at low volumes but don't cut it in a band setting for the heavier sounding stuff.

an amp with at least a clean channel and a dirt channel is a good way to go in terms of being versatile. I prefer tubes so that is what I will recommend. a decent modeling amp can work as well. tubes if taken care of will last a while but yes they do need to be replaced and it can get a tad costly depending on how many tubes there are in your amp.

look at a Peavey Valveking as they can be had fairly cheap and make a good workhorse amp. they don't have the greatest tone but will provide a decent tone over all. get some experience then look for that super model to spend the rest of your life with when you can afford one
#7
Quote by Roc8995
1. Depends on how clean you want it, the speaker efficiency, pickups, your drummer, lots of factors beyond just the head wattage. The good news is that $500 can almost certainly get you a tube amp with enough headroom for your needs, and most tube amps that aren't baby practice amps can handle your average medium sized gig.

2. No. Tube amps and pedals get along great.

3. Not necessarily. You might find that some pedals are unnecessary or don't complement the amp very well, but you won't know what works and what doesn't until you try them with the amp.

4. Not sure I understand the question. In general tube amps distort more smoothly than SS amps when you crank the input (like with an OD) but if you use a distortion pedal it's going to be creating its own distortion. So if the pedal is inherently fuzzy the amp isn't going to fix that.

5. Randall actually sounds fine for what you want. Some of the older Peavey SS heads are great too, and can be found cheap used.

6. Jet city, Bugera, Peavey Classic 30/50, Peavey XXX/JSX, Valveking, Vypyr.

7. Probably, but see #1.

As for clean, Think Cat and Mouse by Red Jumpsuit Apparatus, but loud enough to play a decent gig,
I am willing to change my pedal board to compliment the amp, I guess the main point i was trying to get across was the stock effects and distortion on the amp aren't a big deal to me, I mainly need cleans, but some distortion in case I need it.
As for the question about the amps distortion (SS) Is I've listened to some and its either a meaty heavy crunch, or thin fuzz, but if you used a distortion pedal that wasn't fuzzy in an amp that has a fuzzy distortion, would it use the pedals distortion or still be fuzzy?
As for the randall the amp I was referring to was the RX120RH that my friend has and said its mainly a metal amp, and would probably be hard to get a lighter alt rock tone out of it.
I see like this, It's better to tell yourself you're not good enough, so you always try to get better and better, rather than to say you are good enough, and not improve. You're never good enough, and in that way, you'll be the best.
#8
Quote by Fisheth24
If you're concerned about tubes dying I'd recommend a Cathode based amp so you can just change type of tube without any real concern about biasing it.

IRRC the Orange Terror series does this.

What do you mean a cathode based tube, remember I don't know much about amps, how do these differ from SS and Tubes?
I see like this, It's better to tell yourself you're not good enough, so you always try to get better and better, rather than to say you are good enough, and not improve. You're never good enough, and in that way, you'll be the best.
#9
I would recommend SS amps these days over tubes unless you got alot of money to burn. Mainly because with your tight budget it makes sense. Tube amps cost abut to keep and tube are exspensive (good ones) and depending on the model can be time consuming to change and bias, and if you can't be bothered with that and pay a guy/gal to do it then thats just more money.

It's also a misconception that all SS amps are bad, Mainly because they have been associated with cheap practice amps for years (which they themselves used to be awful). But now a days they are all lot better. Sure even some bands are moving to SS tech with kemper profilers for gig and recording.

Orange crush 120H (also comes in combo)
randall RG series
AMT Stone head

Check some demo out on them e.g ryan bruce channel tends to be very good as he usually has a boost going through most of the amps he demos. But what ever is your preference
#10
Quote by itsonlyauser
I would recommend SS amps these days over tubes unless you got alot of money to burn. Mainly because with your tight budget it makes sense. Tube amps cost abut to keep and tube are exspensive (good ones) and depending on the model can be time consuming to change and bias, and if you can't be bothered with that and pay a guy/gal to do it then thats just more money.

It's also a misconception that all SS amps are bad, Mainly because they have been associated with cheap practice amps for years (which they themselves used to be awful). But now a days they are all lot better. Sure even some bands are moving to SS tech with kemper profilers for gig and recording.

Orange crush 120H (also comes in combo)
randall RG series
AMT Stone head

Check some demo out on them e.g ryan bruce channel tends to be very good as he usually has a boost going through most of the amps he demos. But what ever is your preference


Nope.

Also Fluff's demo's have multitracking and post processing going on.
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
Quote by itsonlyauser
I would recommend SS amps these days over tubes unless you got alot of money to burn. Mainly because with your tight budget it makes sense. Tube amps cost abut to keep and tube are exspensive (good ones) and depending on the model can be time consuming to change and bias, and if you can't be bothered with that and pay a guy/gal to do it then thats just more money.

It's also a misconception that all SS amps are bad, Mainly because they have been associated with cheap practice amps for years (which they themselves used to be awful). But now a days they are all lot better. Sure even some bands are moving to SS tech with kemper profilers for gig and recording.

Orange crush 120H (also comes in combo)
randall RG series
AMT Stone head

Check some demo out on them e.g ryan bruce channel tends to be very good as he usually has a boost going through most of the amps he demos. But what ever is your preference

No just no
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
#12
I'll say it again. on a $500 budget go ahead and try to beat the Fender Bassman head for what you want to do. find another amp that can do what it does that is tube , point to point hand wired made in the USA , not some cheap PCB overseas crap , that will out last you and eat any pedal that you throw at it? . $500 Pfft But what do i know?

Dirt with no pedals

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_N8wNmi9B40

Clean then with a TS808

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z4ye7cUrIeM
#13
Quote by Tone is King
I'll say it again. on a $500 budget go ahead and try to beat the Fender Bassman head for what you want to do. find another amp that can do what it does that is tube , point to point hand wired made in the USA , not some cheap PCB overseas crap , that will out last you and eat any pedal that you throw at it? . $500 Pfft But what do i know?

Dirt with no pedals

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_N8wNmi9B40

Clean then with a TS808

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z4ye7cUrIeM

For the type of music TS wants, the Bassman is a horrible choice of an amp
He wants a hi-gain Marshall/Mesa tone, the exact opposite of the Bassman
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
Was about to say exactly what Robb just did. Bassman's are nice, but one of the worst choices for the TS's situation.
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
#15
Quote by Robbgnarly
For the type of music TS wants, the Bassman is a horrible choice of an amp
He wants a hi-gain Marshall/Mesa tone, the exact opposite of the Bassman


I stand corrected my bad

i just went back and reread his original post , initially i saw the two bands he mentioned Red Jumpsuit Apparatus, and Breaking Benjamin and saw he was using pedals for his distortion. the bassman take peadla really well , BUT i guess the part where he mentioned more than once clean headroom is paramount got overlooked in my haste to recommend something. Your right in his situation the bassman would be a poor choice , , they tend to break up pretty early.


Perhaps a Carvin XB100 would be something to consider It has tons of clean headroom and used they are in the same price range.
Last edited by Tone is King at Jan 4, 2015,
#16
I gigged with one of these for 2 years. Plenty of power, up to 50W. The cleans are super clean and loud. The dirty tones got me from blues to Hi gain metal.
Best amp in this price range if you ask me.

Carvin V3m
#17
Quote by chilirainbow
I gigged with one of these for 2 years. Plenty of power, up to 50W. The cleans are super clean and loud. The dirty tones got me from blues to Hi gain metal.
Best amp in this price range if you ask me.

Carvin V3m



I wanted to like the VM3 so bad it seemed like the perfect set of features 3 channels reverb , direct out , variable wattage, but i found the cleans not so alive sounding and the high gain annoyingly fizzy sounding.

The Xb100 reissue has pretty much the same features + a graphic EQ much like like the Mesa Boogies but does not sound as fizzy , and i just checked Carvins site and its $549 new, damn! i feel a case of GAS comming on

Dual channels: Clean & Lead
- Master volume with switchable boost
- Bass, Mid, Treble, Presence and Reverb controls
- 5 band graphic EQ assignable to clean or lead channel
- 25/50/100W output switch
- Bias switch for 5881, 6L6 or EL34 power tubes
- Cabinet voiced XLR balanced output
- Foot switchable Effects Loop
- Four EL34 & three 12AX7
- Dimensions: 25.25" wide x 10.5" high x 9.5" deep
- Weight: 35 lbs
- Made in San Diego, California

http://www.carvinguitars.com/products/X100B
Last edited by Tone is King at Jan 4, 2015,
#18
Quote by Fisheth24
Was about to say exactly what Robb just did. Bassman's are nice, but one of the worst choices for the TS's situation.


Meh, I'm not so sure. The TS said he wants clean gig headroom and uses pedals to get his dirt. A Bassman works pretty well for both needs. One of his tonal influences is Benjamin Burnley who uses an RM50 with Blackface module so a Blackface Bassman head might be a good choice. Worth a look at least so I'm not ready to toss it on the fire.

I would lean towards Mesa for this stuff though. Best of both worlds.
"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
#19
Quote by Tone is King
I wanted to like the VM3 so bad it seemed like the perfect set of features 3 channels reverb , direct out , variable wattage, but i found the cleans not so alive sounding and the high gain annoyingly fizzy sounding.

The Xb100 reissue has pretty much the same features + a graphic EQ much like like the Mesa Boogies but does not sound as fizzy , and i just checked Carvins site and its $549 new, damn! i feel a case of GAS comming on

Dual channels: Clean & Lead
- Master volume with switchable boost
- Bass, Mid, Treble, Presence and Reverb controls
- 5 band graphic EQ assignable to clean or lead channel
- 25/50/100W output switch
- Bias switch for 5881, 6L6 or EL34 power tubes
- Cabinet voiced XLR balanced output
- Foot switchable Effects Loop
- Four EL34 & three 12AX7
- Dimensions: 25.25" wide x 10.5" high x 9.5" deep
- Weight: 35 lbs
- Made in San Diego, California

http://www.carvinguitars.com/products/X100B



I sure like my V3m head ..... yes you can make it sound fizzy , I can also make my Peavey 6505+ sound fizzy too ...... but crank that Master V to around 5 or more and the fizzy's are gone , the V3m also really responds well to different tubes if you want to tweak it in a certain direction ..... never tried the X100B but I would like too ... just got a Carvin VT50 head for Christmas that sounds better than my 70's Fender Super and Twin reverb , absolutely the most beautiful cleans I have heard regardless of price and takes pedals great ..... Carvin is hard to beat for the money , Carvin selling direct to the consumer really keeps the cost low
#20
Quote by itsonlyauser
I would recommend SS amps these days over tubes unless you got alot of money to burn. Mainly because with your tight budget it makes sense. Tube amps cost abut to keep and tube are exspensive (good ones) and depending on the model can be time consuming to change and bias, and if you can't be bothered with that and pay a guy/gal to do it then thats just more money.

It's also a misconception that all SS amps are bad, Mainly because they have been associated with cheap practice amps for years (which they themselves used to be awful). But now a days they are all lot better. Sure even some bands are moving to SS tech with kemper profilers for gig and recording.

Orange crush 120H (also comes in combo)
randall RG series
AMT Stone head

Check some demo out on them e.g ryan bruce channel tends to be very good as he usually has a boost going through most of the amps he demos. But what ever is your preference

See I was actually looking at Randall, but the rx 120 rh, But heard they're better for heavy metal, But given I have my own distortion and overdrive pedals, I'm wondering if it wouldn't be easy to build a good alt rock sound over the cleans on it. I have heard alot of what you're saying about solid states, and after some research on them, and talking to people who own both ss and tube, (decent ss, not cheap old practice amp ss) the ss build is starting to keep up with the cheaper tubes, which is all id be able to afford now anyways. Believe It or not, they did a blind test amp vs amp, and untrained ears couldn't tell the difference in tone, given idk what's amps were used or if it was a valve state, but not to upset the tube guys like I said in my op, I understand where you're comming from, but thinking I'm mainly using cleans and building distortion over it with pedals, not using the tube distortion, and being that a ss vs a tube at the same build quality (in their respective category) is cheaper, would it be smarter for me to get a semi nice ss vs a lesser quality tube?
#21
Quote by doszust94
See I was actually looking at Randall, but the rx 120 rh, But heard they're better for heavy metal, But given I have my own distortion and overdrive pedals, I'm wondering if it wouldn't be easy to build a good alt rock sound over the cleans on it. I have heard alot of what you're saying about solid states, and after some research on them, and talking to people who own both ss and tube, (decent ss, not cheap old practice amp ss) the ss build is starting to keep up with the cheaper tubes, which is all id be able to afford now anyways. Believe It or not, they did a blind test amp vs amp, and untrained ears couldn't tell the difference in tone, given idk what's amps were used or if it was a valve state, but not to upset the tube guys like I said in my op, I understand where you're comming from, but thinking I'm mainly using cleans and building distortion over it with pedals, not using the tube distortion, and being that a ss vs a tube at the same build quality (in their respective category) is cheaper, would it be smarter for me to get a semi nice ss vs a lesser quality tube?


No, but opinions vary. It sounds like you are jonesing for a nice SS amp so just ignore us old tube heads and go pick out a nice one. It's not what I would do but who cares. Life is short and it's a free country, get what you want.
"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
#22
The problem is that there isn't really a company out there right now building quality solid state amps (there are a few but for the price you pay you'd do just as well to buy a tube amp). Getting a clean tone and building on it with pedals is a fine idea, but you still want your amp to have a nice full clean tone as a platform for your pedals. There are tube amps and solid state amps that you could do this with.

A couple of tube amps I can think of for a reasonable price:
Fender Blues Jr.
Vox AC15

Solid state:
Roland Jazz Chorus
Peavey Special Chorus

The Randall you keep citing is a shitty amp no matter what you use it for.
I'm just a kickin' and a gougin' in the mud and the blood and the beer.
#23
500 bucks is plenty of cash to find a really nice tube amp. Be patient don't jump at the first thing that comes along. And while searching throw more cash on top of your 500. I landed my mesa dirt cheap took me a year but I got it. Just my two cents.
Mesa Boogie Single Rectoverb 50 series 2 combo
Randall RM100
Peavey 5150 4x12
Peavey XXX 2x12 combo
Pedals
#24
Quote by RJH11
500 bucks is plenty of cash to find a really nice tube amp. Be patient don't jump at the first thing that comes along. And while searching throw more cash on top of your 500. I landed my mesa dirt cheap took me a year but I got it. Just my two cents.

My issue is that $500 needs to stretch over a head and cab, and I don't even have the $500 yet, that's just what I can forsee my self scraping up, there's no way ill be able to save up more than that within the somewhat forseeable future due to what's going on in my life right now, as in I have a little time to save up before I have just enough for bills, including a new computer for college, I just moved to Florida and need to re open insurance on my car, I need to get my car fixed before college starts, among other things, so that $500 is a rather hard limit.
I see like this, It's better to tell yourself you're not good enough, so you always try to get better and better, rather than to say you are good enough, and not improve. You're never good enough, and in that way, you'll be the best.
#25
Quote by dyl shermanator
Ok guys, I have messed around long enough, and I am finally ready to find a beautiful amplifier to settle down with and marry, and make beautiful little musics with. In all seriousness, I have been researching and researching, and all of this researching has brought up more questions than answers. I am fighting between a tube head, and a solid state head,
I know most of you, at this point, are thinking "how is that even a fight, tube wins, period" and understandably so, I mean they are the gold standard for rock tone and distortion and what not, hence the mind war going on inside my head. BUT on the other hand, I am looking for a good amp to play alternative rock, not unlike that of Red Jumpsuit Apparatus, and Breaking Benjamin. That being said, I need the head room for a good clean tone at higher volumes for Gigs. With a solid state amp, they have more headroom than tube amplifiers, and at my $500 budget, I can get a decent 150 watt for a louder clean tone, where as if i want a good tube, I am looking at around 20 watt tube heads, which I know tubes can get louder than Solid States, and a 20 watt would be loud enough to gig, but I can only crank that volume so far before the it throws some distortion in there, cutting my head room down. Not to mention tubes take money to upkeep, and I do not know how much money it takes to keep them up to par I.E. buy new tubes at $30 a pop. Now the reasons I would want a tube is because i know that the distortion on it is clean and smooth, and also the cleans are warmer, but me playing mostly Alt Rock, I use plenty of pedals for distortion, and effects, and whatnot. Remember through this that I am looking with a $500 budget, willing to go used in decent condition, and prefer a head/cab for several reasons, biggest one being is replacing the head or the cab and mix and matching until I find my dream tone instead of just going through combo by combo, I know I can get a better combo for the price than I can a stack, that's not really my point here though, so please stray away from trying to sway me torward a combo. So here are my many questions!

1) If I go with a Tube amp, how much power in wattage would I need to fill a decent sized gig, before going too high whereas to distort the tone?

2) Since I am using solid state pedals plugging into the amp for most of my distortion, and effects, would it be pointless to get a tube since the main point of the tube is the beautiful distortion?

3) If I get a tube, should I ditch the distortion pedals all together and just use the tubes distortion?

4) I understand a lot of solid state distortions are fuzzy and whatnot, but would it be the same if I used an Overdrive and Distortion pedal rather than the ss's stock distortion?

5) If I go the solid state route, what would be a good SS head to get that would have a versatile enough tone for alt rock? (I was looking at a Randall head but heard those were more for heavy rock and metal)

6) If I go the tube route, what would be a good tube head for what I'm looking for? (good cleans and decent distortion)

7) I was looking at a Jet City 22h, loved the tone on that, would that be enough power for a good sized gig and have enough head room, or would I need more to have the head room I want. Opinions?

Please explain answers, When it comes to guitar hardware, I'm very knowledgeable, As for Amplifier and sound, not so much, Any help is appreciated. Thankyou!

If you spent half of the time auditioning amps instead of researching, I suspect you would have an amp by now. I'm unsure what else you can learn from more comments/opinions/experiences of forum members. I'm thinking that you've already read the stuff mentioned in his thread, elsewhere. It's time to audition some amps then ask follow-up questions, yea?
#26
Quote by dementiacaptain
The problem is that there isn't really a company out there right now building quality solid state amps (there are a few but for the price you pay you'd do just as well to buy a tube amp). Getting a clean tone and building on it with pedals is a fine idea, but you still want your amp to have a nice full clean tone as a platform for your pedals. There are tube amps and solid state amps that you could do this with.

A couple of tube amps I can think of for a reasonable price:
Fender Blues Jr.
Vox AC15

Solid state:
Roland Jazz Chorus
Peavey Special Chorus

The Randall you keep citing is a shitty amp no matter what you use it for.

My only issue I am looking for both the head and the cab for $500, and as I just stated in the previous post it is a solid $500, the Main reason I keep citing the Randall is because my old bands new lead guitarist (whom I'm friends with) uses it for gigs, and said after playing around with it for a week he got decent tone out of it, and now swears by this amp and is trying to get me to get one, and I wouldn't really listen much but they're actually doing good for themselves now, they're being featured in AP magizine and Stencil Magizone, and opening for national acts on theater stages, and have rise records building a contract for them, and a tour next year across the west coast, and I figure it cant be too shitty if their doing all that with it. Hell id still be in it if I hadn't moved outta state for college, but that's life lmao. Not trying to discredit you for helping, and I am taking into consideration your negative feelings about it, and by no means am I set on that amp, I just wanted to explain my reasoning behind citing it soo much.
I see like this, It's better to tell yourself you're not good enough, so you always try to get better and better, rather than to say you are good enough, and not improve. You're never good enough, and in that way, you'll be the best.
#27
Quote by Ippon
If you spent half of the time auditioning amps instead of researching, I suspect you would have an amp by now. I'm unsure what else you can learn from more comments/opinions/experiences of forum members. I'm thinking that you've already read the stuff mentioned in his thread, elsewhere. It's time to audition some amps then ask follow-up questions, yea?

Oh trust me, I want to, but the local guitar center only has soo many choices, and half of the amps mentioned they don't have for me to test, so I'm trying to narrow my choices and get as much info as possible before I ask them to deliver a fender bassman, and a Randall, and a jet city, and whatever else amp to the store for me to try
I see like this, It's better to tell yourself you're not good enough, so you always try to get better and better, rather than to say you are good enough, and not improve. You're never good enough, and in that way, you'll be the best.