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#1
Hi,
I'm looking to buy an amp to use in my hardcore punk band (i.e Minor Threat, Discharge, Gorilla Biscuits type stuff) and need advice on what to choose.
I need something giggable, so loud enough to go over a loud drummer and something that takes distortion and pedals well.
Budget is around £550 so solid state and tube is an option.
Currently using a Fender Blues Deluxe but its way too mid scooped and fizzy for anything high gain.
If I get a head, I will buy a 2x12" cab thats around £180 so a Head more that £400 is a bit over the budget however a combo for £550 is fine. I want something that can take a lot of gain and has strong mids and treble.
Currently looking at the Marshall DSL 15 Head as its supposed to be close to a JCM 800 and Jet City JCA22H. However, Blackstar is also something I'm considering as I used to use a HT-5 which got me pretty close to the tone I want however it wasnt loud enough
Living in the UK, finding decent used stuff is hard so I'd prefer to go new
Thanks in advance
#2
The HT is awful garbage IMO, so look elsewhere...

I'd say Peavey VK might be another contender, also look at Laney LC30 or LC50 if you can find it, maybe one of the used Laney TT or HT heads, or even Iommi head if you can find it.

New - DSL40C, Laney ITR series, I'd say 30 watt or more, used Marshall DSL JCM2000.
#4
Punk was based on getting any equipment you could steal or barter for. The sound that equipment made when turned up with an OD or gain pedal in front of it was the sound of punk. So basically anything you can get your hands on.

GRANTED there was few and far between sh*tty foreign made crap out there when punk came to be. But the overall basis of punk would still be true today ... If you're really hardcore punk.
#5
Really, then why do all the top punk bands use expensive rigs?
Ramones - JMP/JCM800
Sex Pistols - Fendr Twin
The Clash - JCM800 / Musicman HD120
Bad Religion - Rectos
NOFX - Rectos
So where's this cheap shit of which you speak?

Personally, I quite like JCM900's for punk. Pretty sure Steve Jones was using one on the Filthy Lucre tour (I was tripping pretty hard t the time). Try to find a used one , they sell pretty cheaply,
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
Last edited by Cathbard at Feb 15, 2017,
#6
Have to agree with Xander X on this one, Back in the day it was run what you brung. It was punk no one cared what your gear sounded like as long as it was loud. And yea I horse traded, borrowed, and bartered a lot of gear back in the late 70's early 80's playing Punk here in the SF bay area, Never stole though, as that's one of the few morals I do have. Today? seems like more of a circle jerk for the whos got the coolest name brand gear crowd, Wanna be Punk? Find an old Kustom Defender or Coupe amp and a used First Act guitar, That's Punk
Last edited by nastytroll at Feb 15, 2017,
#7
So who are these punks using shit gear then? I know of none.
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
Most punk bands that are still around from the early days can obviously afford better equipment now, and most have had a change of heart about a lot of "old school punk mentality", something that comes with old age, getting married, having children, making money.

Not that he's the greatest example of punk rock, but Billie Joe Armstrong said it best when asked about their music style changes he basically said he had all the above mentioned and what was their to be angsty about anymore?

Back to the equipment, I also stated originally that though with the mentality of true punk, having expensive gear would be a reason to get up ur ass kicked, there really weren't many "junk" amps/guitars back then and there was no internet, so amps like used Marshalls for instance, cost next to nothing if you knew where to look.

*Born in '82 with two older brothers (10 and 12 years older) both hardcore, live in a van down by the river, go to shows every night, anti-[everything], OG punks. I got a little bit of it, but I always prefered metal.
Last edited by Xander_X at Feb 15, 2017,
#9
And NoFX started as a Ska band, the Clash is kind of New Wave/Punk, the Sex Pistols had one album.

The Ramones however really didn't care, they put their gear together from scraps of what they could find, played the same 5 chords in different progressions for 14 albums, and killed it from '79 until Joeys death.
#10
Quote by Cathbard
So who are these punks using shit gear then? I know of none.


They don't live in your time anymore, They moved on, Today? Oh I got gear that would make you or any of your hero circle jerk logo snobs go hide within your in your safe place with a box of crayons a coloring book and a therapy puppy, And yes some are Kustom's and First Acts, Doesn't mean cheap just means that's what I got. Them other guys you speak of being the ones you heard of? Yea they got a lot of money, Thats the way it works, Nice money nice gear, Crap money crap gear , Get it?
Last edited by nastytroll at Feb 15, 2017,
#11
Thanks for the feedback guys, really wasn't meaning to start a war however

I understand the mentality behind the whole punk rock anything will do, but I do need something that can be heard over a drummer, dosent sound like complete garbage preferably and has a lot of mids and trebles for punky tone and that handles distortions well as apose to the blues deluxe that sounds harsh and fizzy

Again solid state or tube dosent matter as long as it sounds good and can survive gigs and cut through a drummer
#12
I play essentially a SLO in my punk band these days. It works very well actually. So a cheap SLO maybe, like a Jet City 50/100. Whichever ones are the SLO ones. Somebody chime in.

BTW nasty troll, I was in high school when the Pistols hit. Don't presume to lecture me about punk mentality, I lived through it. You have a romanticized version of it and you are way off base. Punks, like everybody else, wanted to emulate their heroes - and their heroes all played through good gear. So pull your head in.
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
#13
Quote by geo-rage
Orange crush100. Punk bands around here use that and it sounds good


A little soft on the high end, but works damn well for punk.
#15
I use the cr120h. A boss sd1 overdrive set bright compensates for the heavy low end and soft highs.

Pretty versital too.
#16
Orange CR series. I'd say recommend the Blackstar HT series, I've gotten some pretty good punk tones out of the HT Soloist 60.
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#17
solclayton2000 Personally would go for the Jet City cab as they're great, they also do really nice heads too so thats always an option, other than that try and pick up a good condition Dark Terror, Tubemeister, Mesa mini Rec, JCM 900, orange thunder plenty to choose from, tend to find get a good amp with easy to dial in EQ and work from there
#18
Look, I wasn't trying to argue either. You just hit one of my "hot buttons" as I grew up in that environment.

In all honesty, I played pretty much nothing but punk / pop punk through the 90s with a hand me down USA Strat (you could totally use a squire), a Peavey Bandit and an Ibanez Fuzz pedal. And it actually sounded really good for that style of music.

The old USA Bandits are a mixture of a tank and a cockroach. Basically indestructable. You can pick pick up a used Silver Stripe for around $100. They're 80 watts by themselves and 100 if using an extension cab. Never had an issue cutting through the mix with that amp.
#19
Your best is either the Blackstar as mentioned or a Katana 2x12. You want to be loud and have controlled distortion. If you get the Katana (https://www.andertons.co.uk/p/KTN100212/combo-amps/boss-katana-ktn100-212-2-x-12-electric-guitar-amp-combo) then also get the GA-FC footswitch for control. https://www.roland.com/global/products/ga-fc/. This is right at your budget and will give you the volume and tone you need.
#20
scoop up a JCM whatnot and it will get you close. Orange could be a good thing for you too. a dark terror would be great if you can deal with the low wattage and a slightly more expensive.
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#22
Quote by GoldJim
Your best is either the Blackstar as mentioned or a Katana 2x12. You want to be loud and have controlled distortion. If you get the Katana (https://www.andertons.co.uk/p/KTN100212/combo-amps/boss-katana-ktn100-212-2-x-12-electric-guitar-amp-combo) then also get the GA-FC footswitch .
you mean it finally made it from china?
Last edited by geo-rage at Feb 16, 2017,
#23
Quote by geo-rage
you mean it finally made it from china?


Let me say this, geo-rage, I have yet to order any of the footswitches, whether it's for the Marshall CODE, Mustang III, IV, and V, or the Katana 100 watt series that are actually in stock anywhere. I've been waiting a month and they're all on backorder.
#24
Quote by GoldJim
Let me say this, geo-rage, I have yet to order any of the footswitches, whether it's for the Marshall CODE, Mustang III, IV, and V, or the Katana 100 watt series that are actually in stock anywhere. I've been waiting a month and they're all on backorder.


Ouch, that's awful. I guess no store, mail order or not wants to spend $ to keep merchandise in stock

Peavey Bandit is an awful cheesegrater, but I can see where it might be a good option in this genre. I remember recording a pop punk band with old Valvestate Marshalls VS series (the Brit-made with Celestion speakers) and their sound was actually great. They played thick humbucker guitars, PRS SE and Hamer. I think these amps could be had for something like $100-$150.
#25
Quote by geo-rage
I covered up half stacks with my bandit. Great amp with a bad rep.


I think it gets a bad rap because A) It's a solid state. I get that, I love tubes, but I also think that good SS have their purpose. B) I doesn't have a great gain channel. It's an indestructible work horse, but it's really only good for it's cleans and excellent for running a good pedal board through.

Quote by diabolical

Peavey Bandit is an awful cheesegrater, but I can see where it might be a good option in this genre. I remember recording a pop punk band with old Valvestate Marshalls VS series (the Brit-made with Celestion speakers) and their sound was actually great. They played thick humbucker guitars, PRS SE and Hamer. I think these amps could be had for something like $100-$150.


I've never played through a VS, but as far as SS go, I've heard they're pretty decent. IDK why Marshall wanted to sully their name by coming out with the MGs.
#26
diabolical, I agree that the Valvestate would be a good option for recording, but gigging? I might choose a 100 watt CODE if I was to go Marshall. http://www.guitarcenter.com/Marshall/CODE-100W-2x12-Guitar-Combo-Amp.gc. Dang things are so popular that they're about a month backordered everywhere I go! Got my hands on a 50, and it smokes. Killer amps. It's damn loud for a 1x12 50, and it's got all the bells and whistles. The Bluetooth connection is poop, but they'll fix their software. It's definitely their app that loses connection, cause when you disconnect, you can still play music through it, but the app doesn't know that it's connected for some reason.

The Fender Bassbreakers are another set of amps I hadn't thought of. They have an awesome, aggressive sound, and at least you can get one. More $$ though. https://www.andertons.co.uk/p/2264006000/combo-amps/fender-bassbreaker-1830-2x12-guitar-amp-combo. Good side is that when you get more $$, you can put a cabinet under it and push some more air.
Last edited by GoldJim at Feb 16, 2017,
#27
Quote by Xander_X
I've never played through a VS, but as far as SS go, I've heard they're pretty decent. IDK why Marshall wanted to sully their name by coming out with the MGs.


Ugh, the MG series! What a load of poop!
#28
Quote by GoldJim
Ugh, the MG series! What a load of poop!


The MG cab construction itself, actually isn't too awful; I've seen worse. I picked one up for $50. It's been sitting in my basement for about a year now along with the other gear I don't use anymore. I actually never even plugged it in to see how it sounds. I've been planning on swapping the speakers and using it for sh*t venues that gear tends to get beat up at. I'm going to put 4 random speakers in it and see what it sounds like. ATM I've got a V30, a G12H-75, and a Sheffield XXX that are spare. Waiting to see what else I come across. Thinking I'll get some pretty funking tones out of this cab.
#29
Quote by Xander_X
The MG cab construction itself, actually isn't too awful; I've seen worse. I picked one up for $50. It's been sitting in my basement for about a year now along with the other gear I don't use anymore. I actually never even plugged it in to see how it sounds. I've been planning on swapping the speakers and using it for sh*t venues that gear tends to get beat up at. I'm going to put 4 random speakers in it and see what it sounds like. ATM I've got a V30, a G12H-75, and a Sheffield XXX that are spare. Waiting to see what else I come across. Thinking I'll get some pretty funking tones out of this cab.


I can see that. I meant the whole MG series amps and combos. Good idea. Sounds like you can make that thing tight. You hosting open mics or leaving it at venues you play often?
#30
I actually teste an Orange OR50 at GC with a cheapie Marshall cab, maybe the MG or the CODE cab 4x12 as that's all they had there (btw unbelievable considering the merch they had years prior!). That cab didn't sound bad with the Orange.

The CODE is a pure garbage amp. Valvestate in comparison is godly tech. I've played through them both and wouldn't touch the CODE with a 10 ft pole. I still own a Marshall VS8100 head which sounds very good for solid state and I've managed to get some really good sound out of it.
#31
Quote by GoldJim
I can see that. I meant the whole MG series amps and combos. Good idea. Sounds like you can make that thing tight. You hosting open mics or leaving it at venues you play often?


I knew what you meant. It just made me think of the cab I had collecting dust. Neither, my equipment stays with me. Some venues are just A) Filthy B) Don't have proper access to the stage, or even in and out of the establishment itself C) Are in places that it wouldn't be a first to have your gear stolen.

My guitars, and if I can, my amp, never leave my site. I guess unless I'm getting a drink at the bar or pissing.
Last edited by Xander_X at Feb 16, 2017,
#32
Quote by Xander_X
I knew what you meant. It just made me think of the cab I had collecting dust. Neither, my equipment stays with me. Some venues are just A) Filthy B) Don't have proper access to the stage, or even in and out of the establishment itself C) Are in places that it wouldn't be a first to have your gear stolen.

My guitars, and if I can, my amp, never leave my site. I guess unless I'm getting a drink at the bar or pissing.


Oh my gosh, I know what you mean! You'll get somewhere and they've got a 2nd or 3rd floor walk up and you can't park anywhere near a door. They let EVERYONE near your gear, or you're set up outside of a bathroom. I had someone steal a wireless mic and a set of my in ear monitors while I was loading out once! So sad, damn it. Now I have a mic receiver and no mic and a transmitter with no headphones.

We could start a whole new thread about nightmare gigs and places. It's hard to believe what and ho wfast people will steal stuff from the stage.
#33
Thanks guys at the moment, I'm thinking its down to
Orange CR120H
Marshall DSL 15H or
Jet City JCA100H
through a 2x12" V30 cab

Which would be best?
I like the idea of the Orange as it would probably be louder than the Marshall and lighter and also hopefully wont need servicing all the time
And the Jet City is the cheapest made of the 3
#35
diabolical, took me a while to dial in the CODE, but it worked well once I got there. It was not as plug and play as the Marshall rep wants us to believe, for sure. Took me maybe two days to get it where I had a few good presets I liked. That's out of 100! I was not as crazy about the Valvestate, but that's not to say it's bad, just that it didn't get me. I actually prefer the Katana, especially if you're using pedals.
#36
The Crush is a great SS amp. A little muddy/dark for my tastes but great as far as SS amps go. If you're willing to go SS, check out the Randall RG series. A ton of gain, 3 channels, reverb, bright / mid scoop / bass boost switch. But no real clean channel even though it's labeled as such. They're pretty inexpensive too.

Never tried the Jet City, but I've heard nothing but good things about their amps and they've got some nice boutique like features for an inexpensive amp. Plus tubes!

The DSL as far as the series I think would give you the sound you want the best, but with the 15watt, I really think you'll get drowned out with the type of music you're playing in no time. I'd go with the 50 if you can swing it.
#38
Quote by Cathbard
I play essentially a SLO in my punk band these days. It works very well actually. So a cheap SLO maybe, like a Jet City 50/100. Whichever ones are the SLO ones. Somebody chime in.

BTW nasty troll, I was in high school when the Pistols hit. Don't presume to lecture me about punk mentality, I lived through it. You have a romanticized version of it and you are way off base. Punks, like everybody else, wanted to emulate their heroes - and their heroes all played through good gear. So pull your head in.


to be fair the story goes that the twin Steve Jones used was stolen not sure what he was using before that. the funny thing was that much of the gear used was fairly cheap back then but is worth a good buck now. I bought an early 60s Fender Concert 4x10 for less than $200 around 1980 and it had sat where I bought it for months. old ampeg heads were a dime a dozen etc. have to agree that I never saw any of the "pro" punk bands with total crap gear. having said that I know that when asked about gear many of those bands did act like they didn't care so that is where the perception came from. fussing over gear wouldn't have been the "punk" thing to do. the Sex Pistols had a great tone period on their album and that certainly wasn't because they didn't care.
#40
Quote by trashedlostfdup
scoop up a JCM whatnot and it will get you close. Orange could be a good thing for you too. a dark terror would be great if you can deal with the low wattage and a slightly more expensive.


Dark Terrors are low wattage but they can get loudddd. Dialing the 7 watts past noon is more than adequate for bedroom play, I can only imagine the 15watts fully dimed.
I NEED TO CHANGE MY USERNAME


  • Agile AL-3XXX Custom Tobacco Sunburst w/ EMG 57/66
  • ESP LTD EC-1000T CTM Black w/ Seymour Duncan Blackouts
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  • Seymour Duncan 805 Overdrive
  • Dunlop OG Crybaby Wah
  • MXR Smartgate
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