#1
So listen.

Some background: I'm a high school senior in a jazz band, and a psychedelic/ambient band, who also enjoys playing post rock in his spare time.

I have this solid state Peavey Renown from '85, which I put cream tolex on, fitted a new reverb tank to, and dropped 2 Jensen Jets into. I think, even being solid state, that it sounds just neat. But it JUST sounds neat. I love the clean sound of explosions in the sky, and while I understand I'm not going to get that studio clean, I want to know if it would be worth it to upgrade amps. At one of my recent jazz competitions, I saw at least 3 cats rolling in with fender deluxe amps. I can't help but to wonder if the tubes would make a difference, and if I should get a tuber and do God knows what with the 80 pound piece of Peavey crap. I've heard lots of things from lots of people. My guitar teacher is adamant that everything Peavey has ever made (except for their cube tube amps of course) has been literally trash. Another guy told me he had the same amp as me and he couldn't even get the same tones out of his Dr. Z. Which is ridiculous. Obviously I've played tube amps myself, and found nothing extraordinarily special about the cleans. So what do you think?
Last edited by AGaySpaceTiger at Feb 25, 2015,
#3
Peavey amps are not trash. Their SS amps are lacking a bit but not their tube amps. A Classic 30 or similar would work.
Ideally, you'd want a Fender Twin, preferably a blackface.
In SS amps, the JC120 is the stalwart. JC60's will do the deed too. The big Roland cubes do a pretty fair emulation of a JC too.

But ideally, you want a blackface Twin. Best jazz cleans ever.
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
#4
if you were just doing clean jazz i'd suggest a Roland JC amp but that isn't the case. as a long time Peavey user i can say that not all of their amps are crap. some were for sure but few companies can boast all winners either.

the already mentioned Peavey classic 30 would be a good option. if working mainly with cleans than definitely take a look at Fender as clean tones is their thing.

ninja'd by cathbard
#5
Honestly, I had my eye on a blackface on CL. I think if anything, I'd probably just get a head and use the Peavey as a cabinet kind of thing, just because I dumped $200 in those speakers. Not even sure that would work, but it sounds smart to me.
#6
That could work but you'd be better off buying an unloaded cab and throwing the speakers into that. What speakers are 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
#9
Weight is one. Otherwise it's a matter of open backed vs closed backed. A closed back cab will have tighter bass and better projection.
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
#10
That's intersting. The only problem is, after I gut the Peavey of speakers, it's really nothing but a solid state amp in a cab nobody wants, taking up a whole lot of space. The logistics I'll need to work on, for sure, but I think a 2x12 cab+ high wattage tube head is the way to go.
#11
And don't restrict yourself to Twins specifically. Pretty much any big ol' Fender tube amp will do what you want - Bassman, Showman, Bandmaster, etc - all good. Hell, even a HRD would do a decent job. Sure a blackface will eat it for breakfast, but it would work ok.
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, I may just stick to one of the crappier RI fender tubes, just because A. I'm working on minimum wage B. I don't want to be playing $500 guitars out of a $2500 blackface, haha. Maybe in a few years. Thanks for your help!
#13
Better a $500 guitar into a $2500 amp than a $2500 guitar into a $500 amp, if you get my drift.
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
Quote by AGaySpaceTiger
That's intersting. The only problem is, after I gut the Peavey of speakers, it's really nothing but a solid state amp in a cab nobody wants, taking up a whole lot of space. The logistics I'll need to work on, for sure, but I think a 2x12 cab+ high wattage tube head is the way to go.


So pull the "good" speakers and tuck a pair of Celestion Rocket 50's in there and sell it.
#15
Quote by Cathbard
Better a $500 guitar into a $2500 amp than a $2500 guitar into a $500 amp, if you get my drift.


At that level of cash, I don't think it really matters all that much.

I'm not at all convinced that a $2500 amp is necessarily better than a $500 amp.

But if I've got a choice between a buttery-smooth Suhr at $2500 and some other guitar at $500 and it's what I'm going to be playing for the rest of a tour, you can betcha that $2500 Suhr and a $500 amp are going to follow me out of the store.
#16
Quote by dspellman
At that level of cash, I don't think it really matters all that much.

I'm not at all convinced that a $2500 amp is necessarily better than a $500 amp.

But if I've got a choice between a buttery-smooth Suhr at $2500 and some other guitar at $500 and it's what I'm going to be playing for the rest of a tour, you can betcha that $2500 Suhr and a $500 amp are going to follow me out of the store.


so MG head and bottom for you then . although i agree that price tags don't automatically make item A better than B there is often a valid reason for the higher price.
#17
Honestly, the "good" speakers in it probably contribute yo most of why it's a relatively ok amp.
#18
My Yammy SG cost me $700 and it's a ****ing dream to play. I played it into my RM100 for quite a while which is a $2500+ amp. Now I'm playing slide so the guitar hardly matters at all, just the pups, I use partscasters. Still using the RM100.
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
#19
I'm a dedicated tube guy so I'm always going to say go with tubes, of course...

A note about the Peavey Classic 30. Nice little amp, sounds good but I've played a couple. Heavy on the treble and light in the bass department. Probably not full enough for jazz. Can be modified to get more bass. I've done that, not too hard but the circuit board is folded into the chassis and is not easy to get in and out. Other than that, pretty much straight forward solder in a few parts, instructions all over the net. Costs ten bucks or so.

The Classic 50 gets a much better bass response, sounds very good, might do a better job considering you'll want the better bass response for jazz. Peavey has made a couple of other good tube amps that should do a good job. I wouldn't discount the 5150, very versatile and will get a good clean sound if you know how to use it. If you can find a used Peavey MX in good shape, mine is a super clean amp. Solid State preamp into a tube power amp, sounds good and the clean channel is clean even turned up to 8. And at 130 watts, you better be in a big building to turn it up that loud...it was made in a 130 watt head in a factory road case, that's the one I have, and a 60 watt combo, not sure if they made other models.

That said, I'll get in line with the Fender recommendations. I've been a Fender and Peavey fan for a long time, I like both, my Super Reverb is a great amp. As already noted, the Twin Reverb is tops for clean, and has the headroom to stay clean on a jazz band stage. I played sax in high school band, I know how loud it is. Not quite a match for a loud bar band, but I would still want at least a 50 watt amp to keep enough clean headroom. A 30 watter might do it, I would be worried it might not have enough headroom. I'd put my 45 watt Super Reverb onstage with a jazz band, probably would work fine. Don't think I'd go lower than that in the wattage though, you'll want all the clean headroom you can get. I wouldn't shy away from a 100 watt amp.

I'm not familiar with any of the other newer amps, haven't played any since I got the Super. Hiwatt is what David Gilmour plays for the cleans, but probably almost impossible to find in the US.

You might also check gear reviews for some of the more well known jazz players, I think some of them use solid state amps too. I just don't know which ones...
Hmmm...I wonder what this button does...
#20
i don't see why you can't have more than one amp...

some older SS amps have nice cleans. JC120 is probably one of the best, but i would take my musicman over one every time, and thats a hybrid.

pick up something new (to you, i recommend buying used).

what is your budget and what are you looking for tone wise?
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#21
I ALWAYS buy used- not a single piece of my gear is new. my room is just absolutely packed with gear, and making accommodations for another amp+ cab would be a nightmare. Honesty, 50 watts is the minimum power I want. There's a fender twin on Craigslist right now, 100 watts of tube. That sounds very useable.

The tone I'm really looking for is a crisp, but warm clean, with a controlled, tight bass, and a pronounced but not abrasive top.

I want an amp that can clean up like Kenny Burrell, and then with a few turns of knobs also function as a great post rock (Explosions in the Sky) amp.

Tl;dr: lots of loud, lots of clean.
#22
TBH to my ear some of the best cleans I've ever heard have come from the Peavey Triumph I just picked up, and I'd stack it against any of the popular Fenders.

But my ears admittedly aren't that good...
“Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge.”
Charles Darwin
#23
Quote by Arby911
TBH to my ear some of the best cleans I've ever heard have come from the Peavey Triumph I just picked up, and I'd stack it against any of the popular Fenders.

But my ears admittedly aren't that good...


+1 sometimes obscure things sound pretty good. i bought this ampeg combo for $30 (it didn't have a foot switch so i havnen't ever heard the OD channel), it has a single 12ax7, and came with a celestion M-70 (which sucks), but i built a head cab for it and run it into a mesa cab, and damn those cleans are nice. really nice.
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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/
#24
Since You say that Your room is Packed With Gear..why don't you sell off some of the stuff you don't care much about,or that you do not like that much(you are talking a money crunch too..?!!) and buy something that YOU like and want! Opinions are fine on whats hot/or whats best..but be real..when it comes down to it..YOU know what Your looking for and the type sound that You want!
SO..sell off some gear..raise up some bucks..go out and try Everything!! Don't get yourself caught up in the big 3 corporate crap...buy something that Fits You! (PS..Peavey 30s are good amps)