#1
Hi, I'm looking for my first tube amp. I like 80s thrash metal, power metal, glam and some death. I want to play in a metal band at some point, but I ind it difficult to find people. I currently jam with friends who are not huge metal heads(one like glam and ozzy though) that like to play pop and alternative rock. Are the tube amps like peavy 6505 mh, Hughes & Kettner tubemeister, etc worth the investment given my interest?. If so or not, what would you recommend? I'm kind of on a budget because I am looking to get a new guitar as well( Jackson King V). I have a Les paul studio and I will be replacing the stock pups. It may not be necessary to spend money on a new guitar so I am willing to spend a decent amount on a tube amp,
#2
For jammin' with your buds, almost any head or combo 20w+ will both be loud enough AND deliver enough headroom to sound good when pushed. And some small amps get into 50w or more.

So yes, some will be great. I'm a personal fan of the Carvin V3M, and the Orange Tiny Terror amps are well worth it.
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
#3
What is your reasoning for getting a micro head in the first place? Portability? Cost?

Are you willing to go used?

The EVH LBX's are tasty-sounding high gain micro heads, but the others you've mentioned not so much. I'm really not a fan of the 6505MH. It's not actually an all-tube amplifier (it's a hybrid) and while it is versatile for what it is, the high gain tones are substantially inferior to the big boy heads and the aforementioned LBX's. It's no contest.

The problem is that the LBX amps don't cost a whole lot less than the 50W 5150 III used. So if you're willing to go used, getting the LBX doesn't make much sense.

Why do you want to buy a new guitar? What particular model of Jackson King V? Is the Les Paul Studio a Gibson or an Epiphone? If you're getting a new guitar because you want to sound better, then getting a better amp is going to do far more wonders for your tone than any guitar ever could.
Quote by Axelfox
Reeeeeeeeeeeeeeee

Quote by H4T3BR33D3R
I also have to do that. Cottaging this weekend
#4
Unless you're playing massiv halls and stadiums, lunchbox amps (micro amps) are the way to go. You get a great and loud enough sound with 20-40 amps and the EVH lunchbox or the Victory Kraken (my personal favorite) and put into low power modes for practice sessions.

Definetely go for a smaller more price efficient amp and then work your way up. I made the mistake of doing the exact opposite - getting an expensive 50 Watt amp (which is still kick ass) and then realizing that I actually only needed a 20 watt micro amp which is easier to transport and sounds better at lower volumes.
Hooper drives the boat chief...
#5
I went with a Laney IRT-Studio for these purposes.  It's a 15W "micro-amp", 3 channels, very nice cleans - especially for a heavier amp and a USB Interface all in one.   If you don't want or need the USB Interface, reamping, silent recording, headphone out, etc. you may want to look at a regular head.  

It sounds great through a Mesa 212.  

Used they go for $300 - $400.  
Guitars:
Jackson Kelly KE3 - MIJ (Distortion/Jazz)
Jackson DKMGT Dinky (EMG 81/85)
ESP E-II Eclipse Custom (JB/'59)
ESP LTD EC-1001FR (EMG 81/60)
Fender MIM Strat

Amps:
Mesa/Boogie Dual Rectifier Roadster 212
Laney IronHeart IRT-Studio
Peavey Vypyr 30
Peavey ReValver Amp Sims
TOOOO many T.C. Electronic Pedals. . .
#6
Quote by jackmiddlemiss
Unless you're playing massiv halls and stadiums, lunchbox amps (micro amps) are the way to go. You get a great and loud enough sound with 20-40 amps and the EVH lunchbox or the Victory Kraken (my personal favorite) and put into low power modes for practice sessions.

Definetely go for a smaller more price efficient amp and then work your way up. I made the mistake of doing the exact opposite - getting an expensive 50 Watt amp (which is still kick ass) and then realizing that I actually only needed a 20 watt micro amp which is easier to transport and sounds better at lower volumes.


that doesn't necessarily always follow, though. often bigger amps turned down will sound better than smaller amps turned up. it does depend on exactly how low volume you're talking, though.

other than that, pretty much what T00DEEPBLUE said. you need to be careful with those smaller heads that they're actually the same thing as the bigger ones (as he rightly said, the peavey isn't all-tube; the H&K isn't either), and even if they are, those smaller power amps often don't really have the bass response that the bigger amps have and that you often want for metal tones.
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?
#7
Quote by Astrophysicist
Are the tube amps like peavy 6505 mh, Hughes & Kettner tubemeister, etc worth the investment given my interest?


I don't think they are.
IMHO they're seriously overpriced for what they are.
YMMV, of course.
#8
T00DEEPBLUE For me portabilitty and cost. Its a Gibson Les Paul studio,  Jackson pro King V KV. I want Floyd Rose to make some interesting sounds and also a  guitar that I won't have to tune for much. Also I want a more metal tone. Maybe I can change the PUPS in the Les Paul?.  I think its 490r?T. Also  I though about getting the micro heads primarily because of portability. I wouldn't mind getting a better amp used. So a used EVH 50watt is more worthwhile than a micro and new guitar?  What are some other heads in that price range you would recommend?
Last edited by Astrophysicist at Jul 31, 2017,
#9
Quote by Astrophysicist
T00DEEPBLUE For me portabilitty and cost. Its a Gibson Les Paul studio,  Jackson pro King V KV. I want Floyd Rose to make some interesting sounds and also a  guitar that I won't have to tune for much. Also I want a more metal tone. Maybe I can change the PUPS in the Les Paul?.  I think its 490r?T. Also  I though about getting the micro heads primarily because of portability. So a used EVH 50watt is more worthwhile than a micro and new guitar?  What are some other heads in that price range you would recommend?

Getting a used 50 watter is obviously not going to offer the same portability of a micro head, but it's going to give you a ton more features and tonal options that are relevant for your styles of music. The 50 watter is truly a kickass amp and very versatile. It's absolutely 100% worth getting one over anything else mentioned if that's an option to you.

Get that amp first before long before worrying about pickups or even another guitar for that matter since the one you have is already a half decent one. The amp is just so much more important for your overall sound that it makes all other factors you've considered insignificant by comparison.
Quote by Axelfox
Reeeeeeeeeeeeeeee

Quote by H4T3BR33D3R
I also have to do that. Cottaging this weekend
#11
Quote by Astrophysicist
T00DEEPBLUE So you would you recommend the combo version or head and cab?

Up to you. It depends on what you already have and your particular needs. Do you already have a cabinet with decent speakers in it?

A combo will be relatively compact compared to a head and separate cab, but the weight of the 2 items together in a combo will cripple portability. But obviously with a head and cabinet there's 2 moderately heavy items you need to lug around as opposed to one very, very heavy one. I think the combo has reverb in it while the head doesn't, but personally I don't care for built-in reverbs in amps as pedals offer way more options.
Quote by Axelfox
Reeeeeeeeeeeeeeee

Quote by H4T3BR33D3R
I also have to do that. Cottaging this weekend
#13
Quote by Astrophysicist
I have small fender frontman practice amp.

Oh boy. Your mind is going to be absolutely blown away when you first play a 5153.

Needless to say, the new guitar and pickups can wait. The notion of replacing pickups on a guitar when you're running into nothing more than a Fender Frontman is ridiculously silly and pointless.
Quote by Axelfox
Reeeeeeeeeeeeeeee

Quote by H4T3BR33D3R
I also have to do that. Cottaging this weekend
#15
Quote by Astrophysicist
T00DEEPBLUE For me portabilitty and cost. Its a Gibson Les Paul studio,  Jackson pro King V KV. I want Floyd Rose to make some interesting sounds and also a  guitar that I won't have to tune for much. Also I want a more metal tone. Maybe I can change the PUPS in the Les Paul?.  I think its 490r?T. Also  I though about getting the micro heads primarily because of portability. I wouldn't mind getting a better amp used. So a used EVH 50watt is more worthwhile than a micro and new guitar?  What are some other heads in that price range you would recommend?

A big "hell yes" to that.  The problem with most of these micro heads is that they run EL-84 power tubes in the power amp.  And they run at a low wattage.  Metal players like to have some low-end to their tone, and the low wattage doesn't provide the power needed to carry the low-end.  When you turn them up, the differences start to become apparent compared to a higher watt amp with 6L6 tubes or EL-34s.  Furthermore, high-gain amps like the 5150 III 50 watt and Peavey 6505s sound great even at low volumes.  They are not relying on the power-amp to break up to get their best tone.  In fact, I've found it almost impossible to get either of my 6505s to the point of power-tube overdrive.  Not without serious hearing protection, anyway.  They are designed to stay clean in the power section and derive most of their tone from the preamp.

The EVH 5153 50 watter is an incredible amp -- beautiful cleans, great hard-rock crunch, and blistering high-gain tone.  Personally, I'd buy the head.  It's not quite as big as a 120 watt head, but is fairly heavy.  Not a big deal though.  Even my 6505 120 watt head is not that bad to carry.  I'd rather carry a head and cab separately than a big combo that weighs 80 pounds. 
Atmospheric dark metal w/ black and death metal influences:
(My Soundcloud page):

Pestilential Flood
#18
Quote by Astrophysicist
T00DEEPBLUE 1X12 or 2 X12 cab?

Nobody can make that decision for you. Again, it depends on your portability requirements and your personal tastes.

Which cabinets are we talking about? The EVH cabinets or some other brand?

2x12 cabinets with the same speakers in them as 1x12's will very generally have more low end in them because 2x12's typically have a larger internal volume. But the speakers in the 2x12 and 1x12 EVH cabinets are not the same, the speakers are different RMS wattages and are differently voiced. Whatever is best is totally subjective. But because high gain music generally asks for lots of low end (though some styles of metal don't), bigger cabinets allow larger amounts of low end to be reproduced more easily. But speakers can be voiced to help compensate for this.

Have you actually tried any of these amps out yet?
Quote by Axelfox
Reeeeeeeeeeeeeeee

Quote by H4T3BR33D3R
I also have to do that. Cottaging this weekend
#19
Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Oh boy. Your mind is going to be absolutely blown away when you first play a 5153.

Needless to say, the new guitar and pickups can wait. The notion of replacing pickups on a guitar when you're running into nothing more than a Fender Frontman is ridiculously silly and pointless.


+1

I started off with a Fender Frontman as well decided to swap pickups out of my MIM Strat. The fine folks here at UG told me to Get A New Amp.

That changed everything for me. To echo what some others have said, if weight and portability are not big factors a 100w tube amp head will be better for metal than a 20w combo or mini. The mini amps usually have smaller transformers too. Not really knocking them though either as I've heard some killer tones coming out of the 5153 mini, mini Recto, etc.
#20
T00DEEPBLUE I will be checking them out in person  soon. . I have only watched youtube videos. I just don't know too much about gear but I'm learning and getting information online. I really appreciate your assistance. 
#21
Quote by Fumble fingers
Maybe look at the Carvin V3m too , I have the head version and like it a lot , 50,22.7 selectable watts , 3 channels , 18 lbs and priced right 

https://carvinaudio.com/collections/v3m-series/products/v3m

I had a V3m for a while. I could never really get a modern metal sound out of it, or really anything I wanted for thrash/death/black metal. Also, it was one of the least reliable amps I've ever owned, but I could have just had a bad one.

I would also check out something like a used Krank Rev Jr. They are fucking loud for 20w, and do great metal tones, especially through a 4x12 cab. The issue I had with it is it didn't really do low volumes too well.

Right now I have a Randall RD45, and it sounds fantastic at high and low volumes. Really great amp for the price.
#22
ExDementia

Might have been defective, indeed.

With these settings:


Pif gets these tones:

Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
#24
Quote by Astrophysicist
T00DEEPBLUE I went to the store and checked out the amps available in my town. I'm getting the Peavey 6505+ 1x12 combo!

Cool. That's a sweet amp with the right combination of mods.

The speaker, the stock tubes and the effects loop are significant bottlenecks with that amplifier though. Needs a Celestion V30 or an Eminance Swamp Thang, JJ tubes and a 0.50¢ capacitor soldered into the effects loop to really wake it up.
#26
Everyone who plays metal needs 6505/5150 of some sort at least once!!

Enjoy it and listen to these guys with the upgrades as you go. JJ preamp tubes - pick up a 5751 for V1, v30 speaker or comparable WGS Vet30, etc.
Guitars:
Jackson Kelly KE3 - MIJ (Distortion/Jazz)
Jackson DKMGT Dinky (EMG 81/85)
ESP E-II Eclipse Custom (JB/'59)
ESP LTD EC-1001FR (EMG 81/60)
Fender MIM Strat

Amps:
Mesa/Boogie Dual Rectifier Roadster 212
Laney IronHeart IRT-Studio
Peavey Vypyr 30
Peavey ReValver Amp Sims
TOOOO many T.C. Electronic Pedals. . .