#1
Looking for a low wattage combo tube amp to use for home practice and recording.

Budget- 250 to 350 USD

Genres - My musical tastes tend to metal. Iron Maiden, Metallica, Blind Guardian, Dream Theatre, etc.

New or Used - Definitely looking for a used amp. Based on what I've seen in my research, a new amp in my price range is unattainable

Closest City - I live in Austin, TX, but I frequently travel near Fort Worth as well.

Current Gear - right now I a have a ca. 2007 Schecter Omen 6 running through a Line 6 Spider II 30w. (looking to purchase a LTD Viper 100fm soon)

Right now I am leaning towards the Blackstar HT5R combo. I tried one at Guitar Center and it blew the Spider II out of the water. I've also heard some people say good things about the JCA 2212c, but I have not had a chance to play one. Impossible to get a really good idea without bringing it home and spending a few days with it though.

Anybody have experience with these amps, or other suggestions?
#3
are you sure you want low wattage for metal, and are you aware the blackstar is hybrid?
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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?
#4
Jet City for low cost Metal/hi gain. Mesa if you can scrape up some more Benjamins.
"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
#6
Quote by Dave_Mc
are you sure you want low wattage for metal, and are you aware the blackstar is hybrid?


Low wattage isn't necessary, but I don't want to spend money on watts that I am not going to use (bedroom musician only. No gigging in the foreseeable future). The biggest requirement is that it has good tone at lower volumes. I have a toddler and the best time to practice is when she's in bed.
Also, I've heard that Blackstars are hybrid, though I'm not exactly what that means or how it affects the sound. Maybe my concept of tone is skewed because all I've ever had is that Line 6, but I find it hard to get a tone I really like out of it.

Quote by jpnyc
Save more money and buy a better amp.


Any suggestions on what I could get for about 500 on the used market? If there is a considerable difference in quality I can save for a few more months
#7
Any one of those amps Arby found would do nicely.
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
#8
Quote by dj_stucky
. I have a toddler and the best time to practice is when she's in bed.


You are a prime candidate for Digital Multi Effects and headphones. There are no amps that sound really great when really quiet. Amps are designed to get loud.

Pod HD Bean used and a nice set of cans. You will find shred heaven. If you want you could add a powered wedge at some point and make a lot of noise. But for now the bean may be enough.

Get off the Spider. I don't think Guthrie Govan could find satisfying tones on one of those amps.
"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
#9
^+1 That would be a good way to go.
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#10
Quote by dj_stucky
(a) Low wattage isn't necessary, but I don't want to spend money on watts that I am not going to use (bedroom musician only. No gigging in the foreseeable future). The biggest requirement is that it has good tone at lower volumes. (b) I have a toddler and the best time to practice is when she's in bed.
(c) Also, I've heard that Blackstars are hybrid, though I'm not exactly what that means or how it affects the sound. Maybe my concept of tone is skewed because all I've ever had is that Line 6, but I find it hard to get a tone I really like out of it.


(a) I'm not sure that's a sensible way to look at it, since performance at low volumes isn't always related to wattage. you just really have to try a bunch of amps to see which sound best really quiet, unfortunately.

(b) if that's the case, something with headphones may well be a better plan as the others are suggesting.

(c) It just means it has some solid state stuff going on- a bit (though not exactly) like running a distortion pedal into a tube amp. I haven't tried it so I dunno how it sounds. Bear in mind, 5 watts (tube) are still really, really loud if you want to crank them up.
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?
#11
I never really thought about multi effects and headphones. Seems sensible, but pricey. I looked for the Pod HD Bean and I found one used for 600. That's a tad out of my price range, not to mention buying a decent pair of headphones.
I guess I'll have to do some research to find some cheaper ones. I've only been playing for about 4 months, so I am woefully ignorant of all the possibilities.
#12
Quote by dj_stucky
I never really thought about multi effects and headphones. Seems sensible, but pricey. I looked for the Pod HD Bean and I found one used for 600. That's a tad out of my price range, not to mention buying a decent pair of headphones.
I guess I'll have to do some research to find some cheaper ones. I've only been playing for about 4 months, so I am woefully ignorant of all the possibilities.


Huh?

http://www.guitarcenter.com/Used/Line-6/Pod-HD-Effect-Processor-111473335.gc

Or a floor version.

http://austin.craigslist.org/msg/5230134412.html

Or a newer and more powerful Floor Version

https://austin.craigslist.org/msg/5222677942.html

Any of those will do what you need without question, but it's my personal opinion that a beginning player should get a decent amp first because it's too easy with a modeler to get so caught up in everything that they will do that you forget to learn how to play the damn guitar. Sometimes too many options is not a good thing.
“Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge.”
Charles Darwin
Last edited by Arby911 at Oct 21, 2015,
#13
Quote by Arby911
Huh?

http://www.guitarcenter.com/Used/Line-6/Pod-HD-Effect-Processor-111473335.gc

Or a floor version.

http://austin.craigslist.org/msg/5230134412.html

Or a newer and more powerful Floor Version

https://austin.craigslist.org/msg/5222677942.html

Any of those will do what you need without question, but it's my personal opinion that a beginning player should get a decent amp first because it's too easy with a modeler to get so caught up in everything that they will do that you forget to learn how to play the damn guitar. Sometimes too many options is not a good thing.


I'm with you there: I don't want to spend time wrestling with a machine when I could be using that time to practice. Maybe I should just look into getting a headphone amp for late night practice? I just want a tone that sounds good to me so that I am motivated to keep practicing.

I remember doing indoor drumline (WGI) my first season and our snare heads were old and sounded like trashcans. I hated going to practice because the drums sounded so horrible, and our tech refused to change them until the week before the finals gig. That was the worst season I was ever involved in, just because practice became a chore.

The Peavey Valveking that you found might work. It looks simple, which is what I need right now

Thanks for your patience and advice. Getting into gear can be a little overwhelming
#14
Quote by dj_stucky
I'm with you there: I don't want to spend time wrestling with a machine when I could be using that time to practice. Maybe I should just look into getting a headphone amp for late night practice? I just want a tone that sounds good to me so that I am motivated to keep practicing.

I remember doing indoor drumline (WGI) my first season and our snare heads were old and sounded like trashcans. I hated going to practice because the drums sounded so horrible, and our tech refused to change them until the week before the finals gig. That was the worst season I was ever involved in, just because practice became a chore.

The Peavey Valveking that you found might work. It looks simple, which is what I need right now

Thanks for your patience and advice. Getting into gear can be a little overwhelming


Valveking is a good solid amp and that's a good price.

Pick up an inexpensive tubescreamer clone to put in front of it with the money you saved. (Joyo JF-01, Digitech Bad Monkey etc.)
“Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge.”
Charles Darwin