#1
Hello friends,

I'm fairly in-experienced and un-knowledgable as far as amps are concerned. I currently play a Vintage SG through a Marshall MG50 which gets the job done, but could be greatly improved, particularly as some of the gigs my band are doing are getting larger etc..

Anyway, I recently come into some cash, about £600 (or approx $1000), but I can improve this sum of money if I need to. I was hoping I could get a Marshall stack as they seem to be the best bet for a long-lasting reliable and generally good amp.

My sound can be described as Punk I guess, I like bands like Bad Religion and Social Distortion, but if you could listen to a bit of the guitar sound on one of the tracks on our myspace - www.myspace.com/deathofanationuk - that would be handy :]

Anyway, any suggestions are most appreciated. Thanks :-D
#3
Don't get a Marshall stack unless it's a decent valve one.

Right, what you could do is go down to a shop, and try loads of (valve) amps, and see which ones you like.

Also, look for a Marshall JCM900 combo, would be good for you.
"Breathe, breathe in the air
Don't be afraid to care"

Fender Strat/Tokai LS80>few pedals>Orange Rocker 30
#5
Get a JCM900 combo.
You don't necessarily need a half stack...
"Breathe, breathe in the air
Don't be afraid to care"

Fender Strat/Tokai LS80>few pedals>Orange Rocker 30
#6
First off, why would you want to stick to marshall when you've owned an MG?

seriously though. right, you're in belfast.

(a) go to matchetts- they stock mesa boogie (they normally have a few combos knocking around, the f30 is normally around £800), laney (try the lc and vc tube combos, maybe the gh head if they still have one), fender (ditto, tube combos), marshall (the tube models- and NOT the avt, it's not all-tube, nomatter what anyone tries to tell you). Also, any other tube models they may happen to have.

(b) next, go to marcus. First off, DO NOT LISTEN TO ANYTHING THEY TELL YOU REGARDING THE AMPS. I've lost track of the absolute rubbish that they've tried to tell me, but one of the most memorable was "Marshall are the only valve amps you can get that you can get any dirt [distortion] out of" (that's a direct quote). This is funny enough at the best of times, but I'd just come from trying Engls at the Belfast Guitar Emporium. Which have a lot more distortion than marshalls. Needless to stay, I was struggling to maintain a straight face.

Anyway, I think they stock Fender, Marshall and Orange. Again, ask to try them.

(c) Go to the Belfast Guitar Emporium in Bradbury place. They stock THD, Marshall, Hughes and Kettner, Engl, and various other second hand and new makes. Again, ask to try the tube models. They also have a nice place in the back for trying out, it may be soundproof- so you have a reasonable chance of getting to crank the amps in here. But ask if it's ok, first. It's amazing what you can get if you're polite and ask first.

General advice:

(a) Remember to try them cranked up as loud as you can stick (or buy some attenuating earplugs), since valve amps sound better loud (you normally need the master volume about 12 o'clock at least). Also, try stuff just under and also over your budget, in case something much better is maybe like £50 over budget, and hence would be worth it. If they won't let you crank it, wave a wad of cash and tell them you won't even consider buying until you get to crank it.

(b) Don't be put off by some of those names that you may not have heard of. Engl, THD, Mesa etc. will pwn most modern marshalls, in my opinion at least. Just because they have a Marshall badge, doesn't mean they're good. But still try the Marshalls, and make your own mind up. You may love them.

(c) try to either bring your guitar with you, or use a guitar from the shop that's similar to yours (similar pickups, wood used etc.). Also, try to use the same guitar for all the amps (so if you aren't using your own, pick one that you know the other shops have, too!), as different guitars can sound quite different...

(d) if you need loads of different tones, you might want to check out some modelling amps- but remember to try them up loud too. If you're gigging, they need to be able to get turned up loud, and a lot of solid state and modelling amps' tones turn to crap at anything much above bedroom volume (the volume you're liable to be using when trying them out in the store). Again, threaten to leave if they won't let you crank- they still may not let you, lol, but if enough people do it, they'll have to start letting people crank.

EDIT: oh, and RHCP is right- you don't necessarily need a stack. Now, if you had an unlimited budget, I'd recommend a stack. But at your price range, you'll end up buying a lower quality head and cab, whereas if you go combo, you can get better quality (as combos are cheaper) for the same cash.

And remember tubes tend to be louder than solid state- just because your mg50 isn't loud enough, doesn't mean that a 30 watt (or even lower) tube combo won't be. Just crank it and see.
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
Great advice, thanks.

Thing is with getting a combo, would it be suitable for large gigs/outdoor gigs etc? Is it just basically the same kind of volumes and stuff as stack? What are the main differences etc?

Thanks for any replies :]
#8
^ no problem, man.

a half stack basically spreads the sound better, because it has more speakers. It's not really louder, but sounds it, if you know what I mean. They also look cooler.

But a boutique combo will sound better (normally) than a mid-range stack, because these are normally similar in price. To get a good combo, you normally have to go to about £300-£400 (at least). To get a good half-stack, you're normally talking about £700+. So yeah, if budget is a consideration, you're getting more for your money with a combo.

Combos are easier to carry ( the ones with only one speaker, anyway). And most have speaker out connections, so you could buy a cab for it later.

Of course, you could always buy a head with a smaller cab with less speakers, lol, if weight were the only factor...
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?
#9
Which models of marshall are tube/valve?
Last edited by tp600 at Jun 17, 2006,
#10
Quote by tp600
Which models of marshall are tube/valve?


JCMs are...that's the only one I can think of at the moment, sorry...Dave probably knows more about that.

And to answer your previous, unedited question - same thing. Tubes are the American name; valves the British.
#11
jcm 800
jcm 900
jcm 2000 dsl
jcm 2000 tsl
jmp
jtm
plexi.

all tube marshalls.
Quote by ClassicAxe

consider anything derek suggests, He IS a gain VVhore you know
Quote by jj1565
derek, will you go out wt me?

President Gain Whore -group on profile
#12
Quote by gpderek09
jcm 800
jcm 900
jcm 2000 dsl
jcm 2000 tsl
jmp
jtm
plexi.

all tube marshalls.


Ah thanks; no expert on Marshalls.
#13
well those are in general, there's the actual models like 2203, 4100, ect. blues breakers, the hand wiered series, and other stuff like that, but that other list works pretty well in general.
Quote by ClassicAxe

consider anything derek suggests, He IS a gain VVhore you know
Quote by jj1565
derek, will you go out wt me?

President Gain Whore -group on profile
#14
^ yeah.

as a general rule of thumb, if it has a standby AND a power switch, it'll be all tube. At least at the wattages you're liable to be looking at.

It's kind of a "square is a rectange, but a rectangle isn't a square" kind of scenario.

If it has a standy switch, it IS all-tube.

If it doesn't, it MAY be all-tube, but assume it's not unless reliably informed otherwise (some of the lower wattage all-tube amps don't have standbys, peavey classic 30, laney vc15 etc.).

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?