#1
Hey guys,

Ive managed to push my budget to £1000 to spend on an amp. The next problem is, which one do I get. Im a guy of many tastes, and I need the amp to be able to play alot of them.

Im after an amp which has a nice clean high gain sound, mainly for metal and lead. But I need the amp to also be able to be able to get some decent crunch and cleans. I know at that price range I've got alot of choices, but the big problem with it, is that it has to be small enough to play in a bungalow, and loud enough to play to 2-300 people. Im also debating on wether or not to eat some of that budget up to spend on a TC Electronics G force too.

Can anyone give me any advice on this, I have a few amps in mind for the price, but I would like some alternate opinions too. A grand is a fair amount of money to spend and I dont want to blow it all on just anything, this amp will have to stick with me for a long time.

Cheers in advance.
#2
Mesa Mark IV.
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#4
Quote by BleedDeathMetal
Mesa Mark IV.


AGREED

Mese mark IV is very versatile and is one of the best amps out there for metal
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#5
Quote by JS5150
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#6
I would say the Mark IV, but you're over in Europe, aren't you? Last I knew they were expensive as fu'ck over there.
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#8
Quote by BleedDeathMetal
Mesa Mark IV.

welll i guess its whatever you prefer but I would take a Framus Dragon or Cobra over the Mark IV
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#10
I'd be struggling to get the Mark IV under £1,500 in the UK. Things are pretty expensive over here.

Its also gotta be playable at pretty low volumes as well. As the people Im living with wouldnt be too pleased.
#12
Quote by SG6578
welll i guess its whatever you prefer but I would take a Framus Dragon or Cobra over the Mark IV

I would (I did) to but the Framus head alone is that much. Unless he has a cab already. Then he should definitely get a Framus.

EDIT: There are not really any high gain amps that are quiet, but if you want you can just get an attenuator.
Quote by doggy_hat
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#13
Quote by Voldragon
Hey guys,

Ive managed to push my budget to £1000 to spend on an amp. The next problem is, which one do I get. Im a guy of many tastes, and I need the amp to be able to play alot of them.

Im after an amp which has a nice clean high gain sound, mainly for metal and lead. But I need the amp to also be able to be able to get some decent crunch and cleans. I know at that price range I've got alot of choices, but the big problem with it, is that it has to be small enough to play in a bungalow, and loud enough to play to 2-300 people. Im also debating on wether or not to eat some of that budget up to spend on a TC Electronics G force too.

Can anyone give me any advice on this, I have a few amps in mind for the price, but I would like some alternate opinions too. A grand is a fair amount of money to spend and I dont want to blow it all on just anything, this amp will have to stick with me for a long time.

Cheers in advance.


Framus Cobra. You're in Europe correct? The prices over there shouldn't be nearly as inflated as they are in America so it might be doable used. The Cobra has amazing cleans, the best of any high gain head I've ever used and the crunch channel is absolutely nuts. If you can work it that's my vote if not then a JCM 800 with a boost or something like that.
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#14
Aye, thats where my problem lies. My friend has just got a Krank Revolution Jr, which he can turn down a bit. The amp sounds pretty good too. Im looking to push my budget a bit though.
#15
brunetti xlr-evo would be my choice for £1000. There was a UK ebay store selling one for £1000, maybe you could look them up. it *might* be these guys, but they don't seem to have one at the moment: http://stores.ebay.co.uk/The-Guitar-Workshop_W0QQtrksidZp1638.m118.l1247 but would be worth checking e-bay stores for "brunetti" for the next while.

that's out of what I've tried, of course, there may be something I'm forgetting. If you're willing to go up to £1300-£1500, you have some other options too.

mark IV is something like £2000 over here. Not an option, even second-hand basically. unless you get extremely lucky. I think those framuses are more like £1200 too, but I could be wrong, and they might be slightly cheaper on e.g. thomann.

best bet is to get out to try everything you can, of course.

EDIT: hang on a minute, do you have a cab?
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#16
Ive not got a cab at the minute. Im kind of feeling screwed no matter what I do to be honest. I cant play at max volume too much with where Im living at the minute, but I need something that can play at higher volumes for small gigs (which Im trying to get into a bit more now).

Thanks for all the replies so far guys, its really appreciated.
#17
ok, so it's £1000 for everything then?

your best bet is presumably either to get something around the 20-watt mark (koch studiotone, that krank (though i haven't tried it), cornford hurricane (gak used to have them at £1000 but they don't seem to do them any more ) and hope it's enough for live work, or else get something at a higher wattage which has a good master volume so it sounds good at low volumes too. something like a koch multitone, engl screamer, something like that (combo).
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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.

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Et tu, br00tz?
#19
How well is a 50W amp going to be for lower volume playing though? He probably can't get it past 9 o'clock on the master, and my gut feeling is there will be little power tube saturation at that point.
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#21
With that budget, you can have access to the very best amps if go used.

I'd very highly recommend checking out the Framus Dragon and Cobra.

The Dragon is darker voiced, with a clean channel that's basically the same as a Vox AC30, and excellent hot-rodded Marshall sounds from the crunch and lead channels.

The Cobra is gainier, and brighter sounding. Spanky Fendery cleans, the drive sounds are best described as a far tighter, clearer Rectifier.

As a bonus, both have MIDI switching.

It's worth noting that the Framus Dragon and Cobra have identical circuitry other than the tone stack for each channel. You can very cheaply and easily mod any channel of one to be the same as one on the other. (Check the HC forum for this, theres a couple of threads about how to do it).
If you get yourself a second hand Framus Dragon from eBay (they go for much cheaper than the Cobras - around £650-750), you can mod each channel to the same spec as the Cobra as you see fit. It's what I would have done if I hadn't got a stonkingly good deal on a Cobra (I'm now planning to mod my Cobra's clean channel to the Dragon's specs).

That said, you should definitely look at ENGLs - a second-hand Powerball should fall nicely within budget, and is an amazingly tight metal beast, with sparkly cleans to boot. Not as versatile as the Framuses though. If you can stretch to it, the Invader 100 is an excellent amp, awesome metal tones as well as being ridiculously versatile and having MIDI switching, though I doubt you'll find many second-hand.

Even if you've got one, bear in mind that the cab makes a massive difference to the sound. If you're getting a professional amp, you'd be a fool to cheap out when it comes to cabs.

Finally, don't bother with the G-Force, the G-Major is the same quality and doesn't suffer from the lag that the G-Force does.
#22
Those Framus amps look gorgeous, and Im very interested in them. As for the quiet side, the dragon is a 100 watt head. Would I be able to stay in the same room as the damn thing. Im guessing its not something to switch on after 9 o clock. I would from the looks of things stretch my budget. I just need to know it can turn down somewhat.
#23
Well, they can play at bedroom volumes... but I won't lie to you, they get pretty fizzy and harsh until you get up to about 2, which is already ridiculously loud in a small room. It's worth it for the times when you do get use a bit of volume though, they have simply the best metal tones I have ever heard (and I tried Diezels, ENGLs, Mesas, VHTs, Riveras when I was choosing mine and, to my ear, it beat them all hands down).
#24
Unforetunately, my amp will be in my room most of the time. So unless I completely rule practicing out, Im not going to be able to play it too often. For gigging, its ideal, but things havent fully kicked off there at this point, so it would be more of a future investment.

It's been a pretty big dilemma for me this whole amp thing. Thanks for all the replies.
#25
Amps with London Power Scaling are probably the future, but I don't know if it will ever become mainstream. They claim to be able to get saturated power tube distortion at any volume. So your gigging amp could be the same amp you practice with. I'm considering the H&K 20th Anniversary Edition tube combo for higher-gained stuff myself. Two channels, 20watts, 1x12 speaker. If I can't get it warmly distorted enough I'll put a Weber attenuator on it and call it done. I need to try one out myself, though.

And if you can afford it, try out a Diezel. Supposedly their master volume is one of the very best around, offering good sound at lower volumes.
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Last edited by antareus at Jan 30, 2008,
#26
As far as the volume problem, wouldn't it make quite a bit of sense to just buy an attenuator and whatever amp you want?

Edit: Sorry, somehow missed that the post above mine recommended the same thing.
#28
Quote by xVSxNightmare
As far as the volume problem, wouldn't it make quite a bit of sense to just buy an attenuator and whatever amp you want?

Edit: Sorry, somehow missed that the post above mine recommended the same thing.

Problem with an attenuator is there's a threshold at which the attenuation kills the tone. On the Hotplates it is said to be between -12 and -16dB. Also you have to know whether -12dB would be sufficient attenuation for what you want to do. If you have a 100watt amp, I read it is just enough to get the amp to the point where it opens up a bit...but you still can't get it to the "roar" level characterized by more power tube distortion.
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#30
With power attenuators, Ive heard they will wear the tubes out, as well as power usage and such. Could anyone back that up?
#31
Quote by Voldragon
With power attenuators, Ive heard they will wear the tubes out, as well as power usage and such. Could anyone back that up?

Of course they will. The attenuator soaks up some of the volume, but the tubes are still being pushed hard. So if you always play with a cranked, attenuated tone, then the tubes will wear out faster than they would if you only cranked while practicing and gigging.

London Power Scaling does not suffer from this. The degree to which the tube life is affected is directly proportional to how loud it is. However, the amp has to be designed with it built-in, as it mucks with the voltage of the amp.
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