#1
I've been a long time Mesa user (Dual Rectifier, Triaxis, Roadster, Recto-Verb...). I currently do not have an amp anymore and looking into the sub 100 Watt realm. It seems most choices are not optimal for live gig playing:

Mark V:25 - would need to sacrifice CH1 being set on clean or crunch via manual switch.

5150 III 50 watt - CH1 and CH2 share GAIN EQ

Tubemeister/Deuxe series - these actually seem the best fit for the gigging musician, but I continue to read about reliability issues.

Do most of you use a 3CH amp or make due rolling off your volume? ANy amp suggestions you've found to be the best bang/buck?
#2
I would venture to guess that most people who are gigging don't use a three channel amp. It's hardly a requirement for live playing. If you really want three channels, that's a different discussion, but IMO the Mark V and the 5150 are absolutely great for gigging and aren't exactly poor in features.

A Mark V would probably be versatile enough for most people. Same with the 5150, depending on what genres you play. Putting pedals in front of any of these will get you as many in-between "channels" as you want.

So I guess the question becomes, what exactly are you looking for? We'll need more information about your specific situation (genres, budget, desired features, etc) because clearly you've got a different idea of a gigging amp than most. There's nothing wrong with that, but I'd bet that most users here would be perfectly happy gigging with a 5150 and a tubescreamer, so you'll need to give us a better idea of how your needs differ.
#3
Two channel Mesa and an OD pedal in front for variation and you are golden in 99% of most live gig situations. Some guys bring several OD pedals so they can season to taste on every song. Two ch plus an OCD works great for me.
"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
#4
Most of my "giggling" toob amps have been two channel 50W+ amps.

If you're using a tube amp and charging money for what you do, you should be able to make that work very well.
#5
dspellmanCajundaddy thanks I think I'm thinking about this wrong for gigging this time around. I've always has a setup that allowed me a clean, crunch, and a lead right form the amp itself, but these were also metal type projects.

The Laney IRT60h looks like a good option with a wattage drop option as well as Mini Recto if the 2CH with pedals is one way to go. I'm doing a more classic rock/80s/90s type project this time around.
Last edited by haroldw78 at Nov 28, 2016,
#6
my best bang for buck out of my amps is a Carvin V3m , 3 channel , reverb with boost all in the foot switch , I have the head version , to be honest I like it better than my MK V especially considering the price difference , easier to dial in with different guitars than the MK V ..... but my 3channel DR Solo with EL34's is still my favorite amp , master volume works fine on the volume
#8
Carvin makes a good amp, and there are some really nice 3-channel options out there (your budget would help) but your options expand enormously if you're willing to get a 2-channel plus a pedal, or something like that. No sense in limiting yourself artificially.

Speaking of artificial barriers, what's with the power requirement? It's not like a 5150 is significantly quieter or more portable than a Recto. Something like the Mark V 100W 1x12 combo has three channels and a 10/45/90 watt power mode. If I were you I'd just get one of those.
#9
Quote by haroldw78
Fumble fingers Forget about that one thanks! How does she handle pedals?


takes pedal great on the clean channel , selectable 7 , 22 or 50 watts in case it's a small venue
#10
Quote by haroldw78
I've been a long time Mesa user (Dual Rectifier, Triaxis, Roadster, Recto-Verb...). I currently do not have an amp anymore and looking into the sub 100 Watt realm. It seems most choices are not optimal for live gig playing:

Mark V:25 - would need to sacrifice CH1 being set on clean or crunch via manual switch.

5150 III 50 watt - CH1 and CH2 share GAIN EQ

Tubemeister/Deuxe series - these actually seem the best fit for the gigging musician, but I continue to read about reliability issues.

Do most of you use a 3CH amp or make due rolling off your volume? ANy amp suggestions you've found to be the best bang/buck?


I use a two channel Mesa Lonestar Special 30 watt for gigging - it has 2 channels, independant EQs and Reverbs, plus a solo boost. I have 2 overdrive pedals ( bb preamp and AC booster). With those, I can cover anything.

With a 2 channel amp an overdrive helps to get a third option.
#11
Quote by reverb66
I use a two channel Mesa Lonestar Special 30 watt for gigging - it has 2 channels, independant EQs and Reverbs, plus a solo boost. I have 2 overdrive pedals ( bb preamp and AC booster). With those, I can cover anything.

With a 2 channel amp an overdrive helps to get a third option.


I was going to suggest this, although I can't quite get to metal territory with mine.

I was also used to 3 channel amps and wanted a wide range of OD possibilities. Here are my options with the lonestar and my 2 OD's:

Clean channel
Clean channel + OD 1 (Keeley Red Dirt - used as a clean boost) for a pushed clean
Clean channel + OD 2 (TS9 - used gain at 12) used for mid gain rhythm
Clean channel + OD 1 + OD 2 for mid/high gain lead
Distortion channel (with gain switch set to drive) heavier rhythm tone
Distortion channel + OD 1 for big lead
Bands:
Native State
A Titan, A Deity
Rash L.A

Gear:
Suhr Modern Guthrie Spec
LSL CSV Studio Strat
Fender American Standard Tele
Schecter C7 Blackjack
Faith Hi Gloss Venus

Mesa Lonestar Special
Bugera 333
Zilla 2x12 Fatboy
Line 6 PodHD500
#12
Guess the question is, why under 100w? With the mark V & 5150 amps, it's not like you're trying to push the power section into breakup anyways. Used 5150 III 100w are usually right around the price of a new mini 50w and you get independent eq/gain/volume control for each channel.
Fleet of MiJ Ibanez
Couple of Balls
Peavey & EVH Wolfgangs
Eclipse
Fender HM Strat
Kemper KPA
5150 III 50w & cabs
#13
Mesa just released, or announced, the Mesas Triple Crown - it looks amazing - 3 channels and it covers anything- they've heeded your call lol!
#14
Quote by reverb66
Mesa just released, or announced, the Mesas Triple Crown - it looks amazing - 3 channels and it covers anything- they've heeded your call lol!


I didn't know that! Seems this would suit you more than a Lonestar Special

TS here is a vid of the triple crown
Bands:
Native State
A Titan, A Deity
Rash L.A

Gear:
Suhr Modern Guthrie Spec
LSL CSV Studio Strat
Fender American Standard Tele
Schecter C7 Blackjack
Faith Hi Gloss Venus

Mesa Lonestar Special
Bugera 333
Zilla 2x12 Fatboy
Line 6 PodHD500
#15
Quote by DarthV
Guess the question is, why under 100w? With the mark V & 5150 amps, it's not like you're trying to push the power section into breakup anyways. Used 5150 III 100w are usually right around the price of a new mini 50w and you get independent eq/gain/volume control for each channel.


100W is just too loud for Bars and smaller places without PAs (or anywhere really lol). Would be nice to have at least 50 with the ability to back off the power.

Shredx
reverb66 WOW that's an awesome looking amp. Didn't mention my budget either, but trying to go used to keep me under the 1k mark. I already have a 2x12 Recto Mesa cab as well, so looking for a head.

Like many others I see posting on the internet I've tried to research the whole "How many watts is enough?" conversation. Seems a 50watt with the ability to drop power will work just about anywhere. Isn't it still an issue trying to push a 100watt head with an OD on clean channel? You'll just get a volume boost no?

This was a long video, but helped me understand a bit more:
#16
^^ This vid is an excellent explanation/demonstration of small (10w) amps, medium (30w), vs big (100w) amps. It probably needs a sticky.
"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
Last edited by Cajundaddy at Yesterday
#17
Quote by haroldw78
100W is just too loud for Bars and smaller places without PAs (or anywhere really lol). Would be nice to have at least 50 with the ability to back off the power.

Shredx
reverb66 WOW that's an awesome looking amp. Didn't mention my budget either, but trying to go used to keep me under the 1k mark. I already have a 2x12 Recto Mesa cab as well, so looking for a head.

Like many others I see posting on the internet I've tried to research the whole "How many watts is enough?" conversation. Seems a 50watt with the ability to drop power will work just about anywhere. Isn't it still an issue trying to push a 100watt head with an OD on clean channel? You'll just get a volume boost no?


I guess it depends on what type(s) of music you're playing, if you're MIC'd and how hamfisted your drummer is. The big thing is having an amp that sounds great at your intended volumes.
Fleet of MiJ Ibanez
Couple of Balls
Peavey & EVH Wolfgangs
Eclipse
Fender HM Strat
Kemper KPA
5150 III 50w & cabs
#18
I'm the old school guy here...

I've been playing a 1973 Fender Super Reverb for about 15 years. I use a few pedals in front of it - echo, phase shifter (now a chorus instead) overdrive and distortion, with a volume pedal last.

I also have an A/B switch I use so I can use both channels and just footswitch to either, and set both for different EQ, one brighter than the other. The volume pedal is great, it doesn't lose treble like using the volume knob. Cleans it up a little, but not much, but I usually keep it mostly clean anyway.

Pedals is what I use to make the difference. The Marshall Bluesbreaker Overdrive does a good job of slightly dirty for rhythm or lead, distortion pedal for when I want it, the Ibanez SD-9 is the best I've ever found. (also have 3 others as backups.)

I just swapped my old Arion Analog Delay for a large frame metal box Dan Electro Dan Echo, and the phase for a Dan Electro Cool Cat, also large frame metal box. Both built like tanks, and double as personal protection...if I get in trouble I can clock someone with either and still use it the next night. Both sound very good too. Started using the Arion delay on the acoustic guitar, works fine for that.

For use onstage, that setup works quite well. I use the overdrive most of the time, distortion for maybe 4 or 5 songs. Overdrive is usually for leads, I don't need it for rhythm most of the time but if I do it works great.

Recently for the really low volume gigs we're playing, I'm using a 15 watt Fender Pro Jr, it does a good job, and I practice louder at home with my Fender Champ...that's how low we have to keep the volume. So I have no choice but pedals, if I crank the amp to the point it breaks up, we get run off. Thing is, if I need clean, which is most of my rhythm parts, I have a really nice clean sound. All my amps are all tube, no master volume. I also have a Peavey MX, 30 or 130 watt amp that's an early version of a hybrid, solid state preamp into tube power amp, it would do fine too but no need to lug it around. It weighs about 75lbs, 1967 Kustom 2x12 cabinet with it is about the same. Also have another amp but it's stored and in need of repairs, I think the power transformer is shot.

In any gigging situation I'd probably still go with a similar rig, a good tube amp with pedals will handle anything I've ever needed to do. These days usually 50 watts is plenty, if your band is that loud, your drummer is probably really heavy handed or you have a guitar player who just has to crank it to 11. I've been there, finally figured out freakin' LOUD is not everything...actually in many cases a 30 watt tube amp will do the job.
Hmmm...I wonder what this button does...
#19
Quote by Cajundaddy
^^ This vid is an excellent explanation/demonstration. It probably needs a sticky.



Great video, and it really makes me want to get a tumnus even more. It sounds lovely - debating switching out either my Keeley red dirt (used as a clean boost) or TS9 (gain at 1pm)
Bands:
Native State
A Titan, A Deity
Rash L.A

Gear:
Suhr Modern Guthrie Spec
LSL CSV Studio Strat
Fender American Standard Tele
Schecter C7 Blackjack
Faith Hi Gloss Venus

Mesa Lonestar Special
Bugera 333
Zilla 2x12 Fatboy
Line 6 PodHD500