#1
I've a Xxx 212 but I was looking for something that can get to up to thrash levels yet have more usable gain to get there. the Ultra 212 came up on Craigslist at a good deal, so it's the only reason I'm doing a versus thread. How do the ultra and crunch channels compare between the 2 amps in terms of gain and tone?

I play mostly at a Maiden or 80s thrash gain level, with some lighter stuff as well.
Charvel So-Cal (SH6TB/N, killswitch), Jackson RR5FR (TB6/Jazz, Drop C). Joyo pxl pro.
Loop1=Crybaby from hell, Boss PS-5, Seymour Duncan 805 or Green Rhino, EQD Hoof or Earthbound Audio Super Collider. Loop 1 into ISP Decimator II.
Loop 2 (FX loop)-Line6 M9, TC Spark Mini. Loop 2 into mxr 10band. All into a Peavey Triple XXX 212, Ibanez IL15.
Last edited by Maidenheadsteve at Jun 13, 2016,
#2
I own an Ultra Plus and you can give that kind of tone without a problem (and you don't even need to boost it), but from what I remember the Triple X is basically a slightly gainier and more modern voiced version of the Ultra Plus, so I think with the right settings the XXX should get you there as well.

I don't know about the teal Ultras as I never played or heard one in person, but from what I've heard it's basically an Ultra Plus minus some features.
#3
It does do the metal tones well but there are times I need less gain; like the crunch channel at a bit before 9:00 is already metal. And it doesn't sound too good at anything lower.

What's the range on the ultra's crunch channel like?
Charvel So-Cal (SH6TB/N, killswitch), Jackson RR5FR (TB6/Jazz, Drop C). Joyo pxl pro.
Loop1=Crybaby from hell, Boss PS-5, Seymour Duncan 805 or Green Rhino, EQD Hoof or Earthbound Audio Super Collider. Loop 1 into ISP Decimator II.
Loop 2 (FX loop)-Line6 M9, TC Spark Mini. Loop 2 into mxr 10band. All into a Peavey Triple XXX 212, Ibanez IL15.
#5
Again not sure about the teal Ultras, but the Ultra Plus has more than enough gain to go easily go into modern metal territory without a boost pedal in front of it. Also it has a "boost" switch on both drive chanels that doesn't really add gain but afik actually increases and decreases the resistance of the pots giving a choice of more or less gain. You dial in a very convincing mark IIC+ Metallica tone on the Ultra chanel with gain around 7-8 o'clock or a good 80's metal tone on the crunch chanel with gain on less than half (both without a boost pedal).
#6
Rather than spending more money, you might fiddle with the XXX more. Mine is way versatile being able to recreate most tones besides modern High gain.

cranking up the master volume while keeping the crunch volume really low will get taht amp to start power tube breakup. You might try that and mess with the gain knob and see if that can get you what you are after.
#7
Quote by Jeffh40
Rather than spending more money, you might fiddle with the XXX more. Mine is way versatile being able to recreate most tones besides modern High gain.

cranking up the master volume while keeping the crunch volume really low will get taht amp to start power tube breakup. You might try that and mess with the gain knob and see if that can get you what you are after.


That's exactly what I said before. Especially that from what I remember the Triple X and the Ultra aren't that far apart, the XXX is just voiced for more modern, aggressive type of sound.

You can also try lowering the gain (or pre gain) and cranking the chanel volume (or post gain) that will push the pre-amp tubes more without so much distortion, that what I do when I need more of a classic rock type of sound.

Besides you have to remember that the Ultra Gain series (Triple X included) has an active EQ in the Crunch and Ultra chanels so it works a little differently than a typical passive EQ. When dialling a tone it's always good to start with the gain as low as possible and the EQ at 12 o'clock.
Last edited by tsc86 at Jun 13, 2016,
#8
do you have the old version of the XXX or the new one. I think some here are confusing the 2. the old version predates the Ultra, the new is a slightly changed version of the JSX.

I have an Ultra 2x12 and it can do iron maiden with no problem. despite not really needing an overdrive I still use one to tighten things up or mainly for leads.

oops the first XXX series was out after the first Ultra series. it is pretty much the same amp though as the Ultra as far as the channels go.
Last edited by monwobobbo at Jun 13, 2016,
#9
Quote by tsc86
That's exactly what I said before. Especially that from what I remember the Triple X and the Ultra aren't that far apart, the XXX is just voiced for more modern, aggressive type of sound.

You can also try lowering the gain (or pre gain) and cranking the chanel volume (or post gain) that will push the pre-amp tubes more without so much distortion, that what I do when I need more of a classic rock type of sound.

Besides you have to remember that the Ultra Gain series (Triple X included) has an active EQ in the Crunch and Ultra chanels so it works a little differently than a typical passive EQ. When dialling a tone it's always good to start with the gain as low as possible and the EQ at 12 o'clock.


EQ at 12 :00 not the place to start on those. that is where the active part kicks in.
#11
Whelp I didn't think about the whole master volume dynamic and it's my *second* tube amp now ...(to self: F***ING DUMBASS!). Needless to say I'll start there.

My XXX is a 120W combo that has 3 separate channels with 3band and volume each, master volume/reverb, and on the back is fx level, line out level, and 3way switches for damping, impedance, and polarity. Getting anything lighter than Iron Maiden on the crunch channel is what I was having a bit of a go with but using more master volume than channel will probably clear that up.

The Ultra is going for 300 so it'd be one for one if not even profitable depending how I could flip the XXX (if that'd even be necessary now). That amp is also a 2X12 combo. It has 3 channels, shared EQ on the crunch/lead. Separate gain and volume for the 2 gain channels, 3 band EQ and volume for cleans too, 3 way resonance on the front, and high/low inputs. Not teal as far as I can tell.
Charvel So-Cal (SH6TB/N, killswitch), Jackson RR5FR (TB6/Jazz, Drop C). Joyo pxl pro.
Loop1=Crybaby from hell, Boss PS-5, Seymour Duncan 805 or Green Rhino, EQD Hoof or Earthbound Audio Super Collider. Loop 1 into ISP Decimator II.
Loop 2 (FX loop)-Line6 M9, TC Spark Mini. Loop 2 into mxr 10band. All into a Peavey Triple XXX 212, Ibanez IL15.
Last edited by Maidenheadsteve at Jun 13, 2016,
#12
Quote by Maidenheadsteve
Whelp I didn't think about the whole master volume dynamic and it's my *second* tube amp now ...(to self: F***ING DUMBASS!). Needless to say I'll start there.

My XXX is a 120W combo that has 3 separate channels with 3band and volume each, master volume/reverb, and on the back is fx level, line out level, and 3way switches for damping, impedance, and polarity. Getting anything lighter than Iron Maiden on the crunch channel is what I was having a bit of a go with but using more master volume than channel will probably clear that up.

The Ultra is going for 300 so it'd be one for one if not even profitable depending how I could flip the XXX (if that'd even be necessary now). That amp is also a 2X12 combo. It has 3 channels, shared EQ on the crunch/lead. Separate gain and volume for the 2 gain channels, 3 band EQ and volume for cleans too, 3 way resonance on the front, and high/low inputs. Not teal as far as I can tell.


can't say there really is an upside by getting the Ultra. the separate eq for each channel is the one feature I wish I had with the Ultra. sound wise probably not much of a difference . I have no problems getting most metal sounds out of my Ultra and it does pretty good blues rock on the crunch channel. at some point i'll probably get a JSX or maybe a XXX as an upgrade.
#13
Another option would be a used peavey vypyr tube 60.
Ibanez Rg 321mh
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Behringer Truth B2030A
#14
Quote by monwobobbo
can't say there really is an upside by getting the Ultra. the separate eq for each channel is the one feature I wish I had with the Ultra. sound wise probably not much of a difference . I have no problems getting most metal sounds out of my Ultra and it does pretty good blues rock on the crunch channel.


That's actually the type of gain I'd be looking for in a crunch channel; classic rock, lighter alternative, etc. I just need something with a more adjustable gain range that can still do maiden and thrash, thrash being the heaviest I go. So if tweaking the volume doesn't work I might jump for it.
Charvel So-Cal (SH6TB/N, killswitch), Jackson RR5FR (TB6/Jazz, Drop C). Joyo pxl pro.
Loop1=Crybaby from hell, Boss PS-5, Seymour Duncan 805 or Green Rhino, EQD Hoof or Earthbound Audio Super Collider. Loop 1 into ISP Decimator II.
Loop 2 (FX loop)-Line6 M9, TC Spark Mini. Loop 2 into mxr 10band. All into a Peavey Triple XXX 212, Ibanez IL15.
Last edited by Maidenheadsteve at Jun 13, 2016,
#15
Quote by Maidenheadsteve
That's actually the type of gain I'd be looking for in a crunch channel; classic rock, lighter alternative, etc. I just need something with a more adjustable gain range that can still do maiden and thrash, thrash being the heaviest I go. So if tweaking the volume doesn't work I might jump for it.


well the Ultra does have it's fans and it seems that many of them prefer it over the XXX.
#16
Quote by monwobobbo
do you have the old version of the XXX or the new one. I think some here are confusing the 2. the old version predates the Ultra, the new is a slightly changed version of the JSX.

I have an Ultra 2x12 and it can do iron maiden with no problem. despite not really needing an overdrive I still use one to tighten things up or mainly for leads.

oops the first XXX series was out after the first Ultra series. it is pretty much the same amp though as the Ultra as far as the channels go.

Not quite. The timeline of the Ultra series goes:
Triumph > Triumph PAG > the teal stripe Ultra > Ultra Plus (silver stripe combos/silver panel head with the lightup logo) > XXX (mudflap girl version) > JSX > 3120 (basically a new version of XXX, but it comes with EL34 stock) and the XXX II (basically a JSX).
If I remember well, Triumphs and Ultras can run 6L6s only with the rest you also have a choice of EL34s.

Quote by monwobobbo
EQ at 12 :00 not the place to start on those. that is where the active part kicks in.


Not sure about XXX/JSX, but I think Ultra's drive chanels EQ is active no matter the setting.
#17
Quote by Maidenheadsteve
So if tweaking the volume doesn't work I might jump for it.


While you're tweaking the volume, don't forget to try the clean channel. I can get pretty good breakup on the clean channel just by driving the power tubes pretty hard. Or alternately driving the preamp tubes pretty hard but the sound is different.
#18
Quote by tsc86
Not quite. The timeline of the Ultra series goes:
Triumph > Triumph PAG > the teal stripe Ultra > Ultra Plus (silver stripe combos/silver panel head with the lightup logo) > XXX (mudflap girl version) > JSX > 3120 (basically a new version of XXX, but it comes with EL34 stock) and the XXX II (basically a JSX).
If I remember well, Triumphs and Ultras can run 6L6s only with the rest you also have a choice of EL34s.


Not sure about XXX/JSX, but I think Ultra's drive chanels EQ is active no matter the setting.


well I already said oops on timeline. as for the Ultra EQ first half of the dial is same as passive after that active kicks in. Ultra's only run 6L6
#19
Quote by monwobobbo
well I already said oops on timeline. as for the Ultra EQ first half of the dial is same as passive after that active kicks in. Ultra's only run 6L6

I'm sure that the Ultras can run 6L6s only (I own one) but I'm not sure about Triumphs. I always wanted to try one but never had the chance. They pop up used from time to time but usually not less than a 100 miles away from where I live and I don't want to buy one without trying it out first.
About the EQ I do agree that active EQ dials act kind of as passive below the 0dB point, but I think the amps that have it on board are voiced a litlle differently than does with passive EQ, but I may be wrong. Still, I think that EQ is EQ and starting the tone setting/searching process in middle of the scale is benificial in a sense that it gives you the same adjustable amout both ways. But it's not like there are any rules here, different people different preferences.