#1
Hi there all.
I'm looking to buy my first tube amp to use for band practice and small bar gigs and would like some help in what to look at.

Budget: $1000 - $1500 USD? (I live in New Zealand so prices vary a bit).

Sound: Well I like a broad range of music, so it has to be a little versatile, but I mostly wanna play blues, classic rock (Led Zep,Purple,Aerosmith etc , and heavy metal (Sabbath, maiden, pantera, metallica, ozzy etc maybe sometimes a little heavier ).

If it helps I have a LP with active EMG 81s. I own a Spider 3 which I hate.

If you wanna keep reading here's what I've tried so far:
- Fender Hot Rod Deluxe: loved the fat thick creamy cleans, but didnt do much for my classic rock and above.
- Marshal TSL: had nice ACDC style crunch but that was it.Tried a JVM too and thought was similar to the TSL with a little more variety on the crunch.
- Mesa Express 5:25: didnt really like the tone compared to the Marshall.
- Genz Benz El Diablo 60 and liked the variety of tones a lot, and found I could get some brutal heavy stuff as well as a thick crunch and nice cleans too.
- Bugera (something) and found it good but was scared of its low price and the fact the power kept dying.
- Laney GH: couldn't get a nice high gain sound until the guy plugged an MXR dime distortion pedal and then i sounded like a cowboy from hell, and that's it.
- Peavey (bandit?) the cheapest loud tube combo I've found and basically hated the tone.
- Orange (rockerverb?): had great classic rock tones butdidnt get heavy enough for me?
- Vox (AC50?): similar to the orange in its classic british rock sound but again that was about it?

Problem is I live in NZ so I'm a little limited for choice. The biggest chain store is the Rockshop and here's their list: http://rockshop.co.nz/04/start.php

There are some other stores though. A Musicworks that has limited stocks of Peaveys and Hughes and Kettners. They did have a ENGL screamer 50 the other day but I haven't tried it yet. There is also a Vox dealer somewhere that I'm visiting tomorrow.

So yeah, any help is much appreciated! Sorry for the long post and sorry if I sound like a newbie(which I kinda am )

PS. I searched the forums for a similar thread but the price ranges seemed a bit below mine?
#2
I'd go with the orange if you have the money. Or the marshall. Don't judge volume like you did on the peavey bandit, go on tone, so that's out of the question.
#3
- Genz Benz El Diablo 60 and liked the variety of tones a lot, and found I could get some brutal heavy stuff as well as a thick crunch and nice cleans too.


Sounds like you have your winner....
#5
I am incredibly surprised you failed to get a nice high gain tone out of the Laney GH, they're great amps that can do a great Classic Rock crunch up to a fantastic high gain tone, they even have nice cleans too although it's single channel.
The Laney Thread are big and clever. No exceptions.
#6
Fender Supersonic.
Ibanez Jem 777BK, Carvin DC727, Fender MIM Strat
Mesa Boogie DC5
Xotic BB Preamp, Ts9, BBE GS, Boss DD-6
Weber Mass
Morley Bad Horsie 2
Ask me any questions about my gear!
#7
Quote by WtrPlyr
The orange didn't go heavy enough for you? That's weird. Maybe put an overdrive in front of it, you should easily get black sabbath and metallica sounds out of it

Yeah, im keen to go back and try some more with this one. Saw some youtubing of it and it sounds fantastic.
Good thing is im not in a rush so im taking plenty of time to play lots
I liked the Genz Benz but it has so many mixed reactions. Hey, if I still like it after I've tried all else...
#8
^^^ You are like my favorite person who ever came on here and asked for some help with you amp purchase.. You do everything right compared to most.

1. You take your time with a big decision
2. Try out everything you can get your hands on
3. Are open to suggestions

Usually its people who need help getting a good sound out of their MG they just bought cause they have a gig tomorrow.

Or they need to upgrade their Spider because 75 watts of crushing SS power isnt enough to get over their drummer, and they want to know if the 120 watt spider will do it.
Last edited by stangconv at May 30, 2008,
#9
Quote by Teh GIR
Fender Supersonic.


Really a good suggestion. About the same price as a Mesa 5:25 by you. Not your father's Fender. Great cleans, but much heavier and tighter overdrive than you'd expect.

Looking at that website, it's probably the Orange Rocker that I'd probably be targeting, while the Genz Benz looks like the best br00talz value. The Mesa Boogie Stiletto Ace is worth a long look, too.
You Don't Need a halfstack.

You Don't Need 100W.

Quote by jj1565
i love you slats.
#10
The Hughes & Kettner Statesman might be worth a look, depending if you can get it/afford it in NZ. And whether it gets metal enough for your liking.
A dwarf might hear you. What then?

My Music
#11
Yes, the supersonic is a FANTASTIC amp


A jack of (most) trades


While it wont get Recto' sounds without a good OD pedal, it can get every thing that you are looking for, i recomend you try one out.
Ibanez Jem 777BK, Carvin DC727, Fender MIM Strat
Mesa Boogie DC5
Xotic BB Preamp, Ts9, BBE GS, Boss DD-6
Weber Mass
Morley Bad Horsie 2
Ask me any questions about my gear!
#13
Cool, I'll try a supersonic if I can find one today. The Mark 4 is outta my price range a bit. If I was willing to spend that much I'd be looking for a head and cab. But maybe I could try some of the others.
#14
Quote by Warthchild13
Cool, I'll try a supersonic if I can find one today. The Mark 4 is outta my price range a bit. If I was willing to spend that much I'd be looking for a head and cab. But maybe I could try some of the others.


Go Used.....
#15
Quote by stangconv


Or they need to upgrade their Spider because 75 watts of crushing SS power isnt enough to get over their drummer, and they want to know if the 120 watt spider will do it.


Good god, how loud is that drummer? I barely turn my 75 watt SIII up (again, no hating, I knew what I was buying it and bought it for a reason) and can clear my drummer and get right in to the mix just fine.

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#16
Fender Supersonic for sure...it has your classic Fender cleans, and a Marshall-voiced overdrive. It's really an awesome amp. If you find that you don't like that one, you might like a Mesa Boogie Mark IV combo.
Epiphone Dot
DIY Esquire w/Neovin Power Rock pickup
Vox AC30VR 212
Arion MTE-1 (LED clipping diodes added)
Vox Tonelab LE
Roland SDE1000 delay

Quote by DaMarsbarPerson
By high-gain I don't mean stupid stuff. I just mean styles like Motley Crue or Iron Maiden