#1
Has anyone had any experience with the Marshall MG series?

I'm looking into buying a solid state amp to play some rock (think Nirvana, Smashing Pumpkins etc.) and modern metal (think System of a down etc). I need an amp that has enough power to practice with it and maybe play small gigs (small clubs). Also, I'm definitely looking for an amp that can take pedals well!! I'm mainly going to use my distortion pedals to get that dirty sound. I've decided on solid state for several different factors.

The problem is, I can't try this amp out (not available locally) and I've read mixed reviews about it... But then again I've read mixed reviews about all the other amps I've looked into so far. I've somehow narrowed my choices to the Marshall MG102CFX, Peavey Bandit 112 and Fender Champion 100.

Any help would be highly appreciated.
Last edited by R3-AUA at Jun 4, 2016,
#3
Garbage
Squier Vintage Modified 1970s Stratocaster.
Squier Classic Vibe 1970s Precision Bass
Guitar Rig 5
Presonus Audiobox
Behringer Truth B2030A
#4
Quote by R3-AUA
Has anyone had any experience with the Marshall MG series?

I'm looking into buying a solid state amp to play some rock (think Nirvana, Smashing Pumpkins etc.) and modern metal (think System of a down etc). I need an amp that has enough power to practice with it and maybe play small gigs (small clubs). Also, I'm definitely looking for an amp that can take pedals well!! I'm mainly going to use my distortion pedals to get that dirty sound. I've decided on solid state for several different factors.

The problem is, I can't try this amp out (not available locally) and I've read mixed reviews about it... But then again I've read mixed reviews about all the other amps I've looked into so far. I've somehow narrowed my choices to the Marshall MG102CFX, Peavey Bandit 112 and Fender Champion 100.

Any help would be highly appreciated.


MG series is much hated around here . they really aren't very good amps. as a clean platform for pedals they probably will do but I'd go for the Peavey Bandit over the MG for that purpose.

why did you decide to go for solid state? you may want to look into a modeling amp like a Peavvey Vypr or a vox valvetronix series over just a a straight up solid state amp
#5
Quote by monwobobbo
MG series is much hated around here . they really aren't very good amps. as a clean platform for pedals they probably will do but I'd go for the Peavey Bandit over the MG for that purpose.

why did you decide to go for solid state? you may want to look into a modeling amp like a Peavvey Vypr or a vox valvetronix series over just a a straight up solid state amp


Noticed can I ask why? Surely there must be a Valid reason for hating the MG?

The main reason I'm going Solid over Modeling being that I intend to use different pedals to dial in the sound I'm looking for. I figured a basic amp with a nice clean sound that can take pedals well (oh not to mention, has an effects loop) should suffice. My current amp (an old Brownsville 65w) hates distortion pedals... The thing sounds awful when I put a Big Muff or a Tubescreamer in front of it. I have checked out the Vypyr but I didn't really like it a lot. The Vox I'll have to check out, thanks for the tip!
#6
Quote by R3-AUA
Noticed can I ask why? Surely there must be a Valid reason for hating the MG?

The sound, maybe?

They're not unlistenable, they're just utterly unimpressive for the money.
#7
Quote by R3-AUA
Noticed can I ask why? Surely there must be a Valid reason for hating the MG?

The main reason I'm going Solid over Modeling being that I intend to use different pedals to dial in the sound I'm looking for. I figured a basic amp with a nice clean sound that can take pedals well (oh not to mention, has an effects loop) should suffice. My current amp (an old Brownsville 65w) hates distortion pedals... The thing sounds awful when I put a Big Muff or a Tubescreamer in front of it. I have checked out the Vypyr but I didn't really like it a lot. The Vox I'll have to check out, thanks for the tip!



It isn't even that they sound terrible for the money. They sound terrible, period. If you didn't like the Vypyr, well, Vypyrs sound WAAAAAY better than anything in the MG series.

Give us your budget and I'm sure we can come up with 100 options that are far better than the MG.
Atmospheric dark metal w/ black and death metal influences:
(My Soundcloud page):

Pestilential Flood
#8
Quote by R3-AUA
Noticed can I ask why? Surely there must be a Valid reason for hating the MG?

The main reason I'm going Solid over Modeling being that I intend to use different pedals to dial in the sound I'm looking for. I figured a basic amp with a nice clean sound that can take pedals well (oh not to mention, has an effects loop) should suffice. My current amp (an old Brownsville 65w) hates distortion pedals... The thing sounds awful when I put a Big Muff or a Tubescreamer in front of it. I have checked out the Vypyr but I didn't really like it a lot. The Vox I'll have to check out, thanks for the tip!


well the biggest reason is that they don't deliver the Marshall sound despite promising to do so. when turned up to band levels the sound is pretty crappy unless you are playing death metal or the like. they just aren't a really good amp and you pay more for the marshall name than anything tone wise.

ok so why not tube then. you can get a used Peavey Valveking that will certainly be loud enough to play in a band with and they love pedals.
#9
Quote by R3-AUA
Noticed can I ask why? Surely there must be a Valid reason for hating the MG?

The main reason I'm going Solid over Modeling being that I intend to use different pedals to dial in the sound I'm looking for. I figured a basic amp with a nice clean sound that can take pedals well (oh not to mention, has an effects loop) should suffice. My current amp (an old Brownsville 65w) hates distortion pedals... The thing sounds awful when I put a Big Muff or a Tubescreamer in front of it. I have checked out the Vypyr but I didn't really like it a lot. The Vox I'll have to check out, thanks for the tip!
Part of what makes an amp take pedals well is how the tubes react to the effects. SS amps often just do not react the same way or as good as tube amps.

If he was looking to buy that MG new, that means he has about a $600 USD budget to work around.
Last edited by Will Lane at Jun 4, 2016,
#10
^ if his budget is $600usd he can get some really great amps like a used Peavey JSX 2x12 combo then pretty much ditch all his pedals except an OD to push it a bit harder.
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
#11
None of those bands you mentioned used solid state amps for their signature tone. So......good luck.
#12
Someone is selling one for roughly $300, hence my question. But now I know, I'll be avoiding this amp thanks everyone!

My budget is $250 by the way as I still have to add shipping and customs costs to this.
#13
No MG, No Fender Champion or Frontman, No Spider. They simply will not take you where you want to go. Pedals wont fix these amps.

1. Used Peavey Vypyr tube 60
2. Used Peavey Classic 30
3. Used Peavey Valve King

All take pedals pretty well, sound decent, and are widely available used. They will get you in the game on a shoestring budget.
"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
#14
Quote by R3-AUA
Noticed can I ask why?


Utterly terrible no matter what you try and throw in front of it. Made the mistake of buying a MG15 years back, even with pedals, and connecting my HD500, it still sounded like complete shit. Was so horrid I literally just tossed it into the dumpster rather that trying to sell/curse some other unfortunate soul with that complete garbage...
ESP LTD James Hetfield Signature Vulture-Satin Black
ESP LTD James Hetfield Signature Snakebyte-Snow White
ESP LTD James Hetfield Signature Iron Cross-Snow White
Jackson SLATXMQ Soloist3-6-Trans Red Quilt
Jackson Pro Series Dinky DK2QM-Chlorine Burst
Jackson Pro Series Monarkh SC-Trans Purple Quilt
Ibanez Iron Label ARZIR20 w/ Het Set-White
Schecter Hellraiser C-1-Black Cherry Burst
Ibanez RG-770-Laser Blue
Jackson Kelly-Trans Green Flame
Line 6 Helix LT
#16
From tube amps a used Valveking is cheap as chips and excellent platform for pedal use. Does not sound half bad on its own too, the gain channel easily beats most crappy pedals and clean sound is really, really good. From 600$ a used Valveking will also leave a lot of money for hunting down a used good quality cab, which is just as important for your sound as is the amp itself by the way. All good amps can be ruined with shitty muddy sounding speakers.

If you are hellbent on getting a solid state, buy Randall. They make good SS amps although I do not like mine as a pedal platform. Or Peavey Bandit or used Peavey Supreme or XXL.

ESP LTD F-50 + Tonezone
Cort EVL-Z4 + X2N
Cort EVL-K47B

Marshall Valvestate 8100
Randall RG1503
Bugera 333
Peavey Rockmaster preamp

Line6 Pod X3
Last edited by MaaZeus at Jun 5, 2016,
#17
Quote by R3-AUA
Noticed can I ask why? Surely there must be a Valid reason for hating the MG?

The main reason I'm going Solid over Modeling being that I intend to use different pedals to dial in the sound I'm looking for. I figured a basic amp with a nice clean sound that can take pedals well (oh not to mention, has an effects loop) should suffice. My current amp (an old Brownsville 65w) hates distortion pedals... The thing sounds awful when I put a Big Muff or a Tubescreamer in front of it. I have checked out the Vypyr but I didn't really like it a lot. The Vox I'll have to check out, thanks for the tip!


As a Vypyr 30 owner who had considered a Spider, let me summarize my experience. The Vypyr takes more work to fine tune versus a Spider. The Spider has a simpler set of controls and is easy to demo. That said, there was a lot more to tinker with and better emulation with the Vypyr. The newer series has Bass support as well (kinda regret not getting a VIP 40W for that). I've found the 30 to have a learning curve, BUT for the flexibility when playing around with different tones (I am playing Honky Tonk Badonkadonk ). For a quick check, the Vypyr wasn't my first choice either, but it's able to emulate cleans pretty well. (I've tested a Blues Jr. and Bassbreaker since then.) My goal was to have an amp to play with to see what did what since I can't live at Guitar Center all day. Keep your end goal in mind and see what the amp will do for you.
Guitar/Bass:
Schecter: Damien 6/Stilletto Extreme 5, Squier: Bullet HSS*, Washburn RX10*/WG-587, Agile Septor 727
*mods

Amps/FX
Peavey: Vypyr 30/Max 112 (200W), ISP: Decimator

Quote by dannyalcatraz
Understood- I waste money on amps*, too.
#18
Quote by R3-AUA
Someone is selling one for roughly $300, hence my question. But now I know, I'll be avoiding this amp thanks everyone!

My budget is $250 by the way as I still have to add shipping and customs costs to this.

Solid state amps are very hit and miss, which is why people tend to hate them. You really have to do your homework on them since so many companies get them wrong. Marshall makes great tube amps, but the MG series are just awful. I bought one, and returned it a week later.

There are very few companies who get solid state amps right. Randall definitely makes a decent SS amp. There is also the Ampeg VH140C which has great cleans, built in stereo chorus, reverb, and enough gain to play death metal without sounding like bees fighting their way out of a tin can. Unfortunately, you may be hard pressed to find one of these SS amps withing your budget. As others have suggested on here, your best bet may be a Peavey Valveking. They have plenty of gain and respond great to pedals. It matches all of your criteria (budget, pedal response, and versatility) except for being solid state. I played solid state for years, but my Valveking is now my primary live amp. It'll hit all the marks you are looking for, and there is a wealth of information out there on the VK so you can mod it if you choose to.
Gibson Les Paul 60s Tribute
Jackson King V
Peavey Valveking 100
Ampeg VH140C
Boss TU-3 Chromatic Tuner
MXR ZW-44 Overdrive
Dunlop ZW-45 Wah
Boss NS-2 Noise Suppressor
Digitech JamMan Solo XT
Peavey Vypyr VIP 1
#19
Quote by Nolasludge
Solid state amps are very hit and miss, which is why people tend to hate them. You really have to do your homework on them since so many companies get them wrong. Marshall makes great tube amps, but the MG series are just awful. I bought one, and returned it a week later.

There are very few companies who get solid state amps right. Randall definitely makes a decent SS amp. There is also the Ampeg VH140C which has great cleans, built in stereo chorus, reverb, and enough gain to play death metal without sounding like bees fighting their way out of a tin can. Unfortunately, you may be hard pressed to find one of these SS amps withing your budget. As others have suggested on here, your best bet may be a Peavey Valveking. They have plenty of gain and respond great to pedals. It matches all of your criteria (budget, pedal response, and versatility) except for being solid state. I played solid state for years, but my Valveking is now my primary live amp. It'll hit all the marks you are looking for, and there is a wealth of information out there on the VK so you can mod it if you choose to.


Thanks for the info. And thank you for taking all of the criteria into consideration.
I'll definitely look into the Valveking. Let's see if I can find one used on Reverb.

I do have a few questions:
1. I take that for my budget I'll probably get a smaller wattage amp (15...maaaaybe 30?). Will this be loud enough to play with a band (no PA system) and live (small gigs, with no mic in front of amp)?
2. How often do you guys change valves? And how much do they go for on average? I live on an island so chances are I'll end up paying double for a single valve (shipping + customs costs tend to be high).
#20
Quote by R3-AUA
1. I take that for my budget I'll probably get a smaller wattage amp (15...maaaaybe 30?). Will this be loud enough to play with a band (no PA system) and live (small gigs, with no mic in front of amp)?
2. How often do you guys change valves? And how much do they go for on average? I live on an island so chances are I'll end up paying double for a single valve (shipping + customs costs tend to be high).

1. Probably not if you use cleans. Distortion you should be able to manage fine, but at band volumes most tube amps of that kind of wattage wouldn't stay clean.
2. Depends on the amp and use, but you should be able to get at least a couple years out of a set of tubes, and in many cases they'll last much longer.
#21
Quote by K33nbl4d3
1. Probably not if you use cleans. Distortion you should be able to manage fine, but at band volumes most tube amps of that kind of wattage wouldn't stay clean.
2. Depends on the amp and use, but you should be able to get at least a couple years out of a set of tubes, and in many cases they'll last much longer.



Thanks! I just checked and the Valveking comes in 20 and 50 watt (then it jumps to 100). As you pointed out the 20 watt will be too small, so will the 50 watt be better for what I intend to use it for?
#22
Quote by tc1072
Utterly terrible no matter what you try and throw in front of it. Made the mistake of buying a MG15 years back, even with pedals, and connecting my HD500, it still sounded like complete shit. Was so horrid I literally just tossed it into the dumpster rather that trying to sell/curse some other unfortunate soul with that complete garbage...
You have done the guitar community a small but important favor.
Quote by R3-AUA
Thanks for the info. And thank you for taking all of the criteria into consideration.
I'll definitely look into the Valveking. Let's see if I can find one used on Reverb.

I do have a few questions:
1. I take that for my budget I'll probably get a smaller wattage amp (15...maaaaybe 30?). Will this be loud enough to play with a band (no PA system) and live (small gigs, with no mic in front of amp)?
2. How often do you guys change valves? And how much do they go for on average? I live on an island so chances are I'll end up paying double for a single valve (shipping + customs costs tend to be high).
1. The Used Valveking 1x12 you should be looking at is 50 watts. You should have plenty of headroom distorted. The clean channel could use a bit more headroom but still stays pretty clean when played loud.

2. Generally, power tubes should be changed every year as preventative maintenance. Preamp tubes maybe every 3 years. Some maybe need to be changed sooner or later depending upon the circuit and quality of tube. Some amps from yesteryear have the original tubes in, though. Their pricing depends a lot on the tube type and brand.
#23
Quote by R3-AUA
Thanks for the info. And thank you for taking all of the criteria into consideration.
I'll definitely look into the Valveking. Let's see if I can find one used on Reverb.

I do have a few questions:
1. I take that for my budget I'll probably get a smaller wattage amp (15...maaaaybe 30?). Will this be loud enough to play with a band (no PA system) and live (small gigs, with no mic in front of amp)?
2. How often do you guys change valves? And how much do they go for on average? I live on an island so chances are I'll end up paying double for a single valve (shipping + customs costs tend to be high).


Valveking 1x12 combo is 50 watts and will do the trick. 15 watts can be a bit iffy depending on how loud the drummer is and how big the venue is. 30 is better. keep in mind we are talking tube amps as 30 watts for a solid state or modeler just isn't going to cut it.

tubes get changed based on usage but figure once a year if you play in band and practice with the amp frequently. valveking uses 3 x 12ax7 tubes (preamp) and 2 6L6 (power amp) tubes. not really all that expensive.
Last edited by monwobobbo at Jun 5, 2016,
#24
Thank you all! Hopefully I can get a 50w Valveking within my price range.

One final question (sorry for asking so many questions): has anyone ever tried it with one of the following pedals? Dirty Little secret, Emma Pisdiyauwot, Big Muff? These are the main pedals I'll be using it with.
#25
Quote by R3-AUA
Thank you all! Hopefully I can get a 50w Valveking within my price range.

One final question (sorry for asking so many questions): has anyone ever tried it with one of the following pedals? Dirty Little secret, Emma Pisdiyauwot, Big Muff? These are the main pedals I'll be using it with.


well I have a Muff clone and it sounds fine with that. comes real close to the tone of the 1st Montrose album. not familiar with the other pedals you mentioned. works fine with everything I've thrown at mine. I use the VK mainly as a practice amp (Peavey Ultra 2x12 Is my main amp). it's a perfectly good pedal platform and the fx loop works fine. nothing fancy but a solid amp that gets the job done.

ask what you need to know it's what the board is here for.
Last edited by monwobobbo at Jun 5, 2016,
#26
Quote by R3-AUA
Thanks for the info. And thank you for taking all of the criteria into consideration.
I'll definitely look into the Valveking. Let's see if I can find one used on Reverb.

I do have a few questions:
1. I take that for my budget I'll probably get a smaller wattage amp (15...maaaaybe 30?). Will this be loud enough to play with a band (no PA system) and live (small gigs, with no mic in front of amp)?
2. How often do you guys change valves? And how much do they go for on average? I live on an island so chances are I'll end up paying double for a single valve (shipping + customs costs tend to be high).


I change power tubes every 5-30 years depending on how much I use the amp and how they fare on an annual test. My main gig amp is a Mesa and they tested as new last month (4 yrs old). My Super Reverb still has RCA tubes from the 70s with about 2000 hours on that amp. They test within specs but not as new.

I did have a fairly new preamp tube fail suddenly last year at a gig. Sounded awful. We took a break and I swapped-in a $10 spare. Problem solved. Tube life is really a non issue for most experienced players.
"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
Last edited by Cajundaddy at Jun 5, 2016,
#27
Pull up the information on the BluGuitar Amp1 http://www.bluguitar.com/english/AMP1.html

This is a four channel preamp sim with a 100W Class D amp built in. You'll need a speaker cab of some kind to go with it...

That's it on the floor, with an optional foot pedal controller next to it. The shape is what it is to allow the AMP1 to sit on a speaker cabinet that has a handle on it.



Last edited by dspellman at Jun 5, 2016,