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Thread: The Amp Review Thread

  1. #61
    Ultimate Tone Slacker jimijames's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Amp Review Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by jimijames View Post
    18w "Baby Will" Epi Valve Jr. Conversion
    This is a follow up review (IDK if we're allowed to do these, but it's short).

    The amp has 3 speaker outs - a 4 ohm, 8 ohm, and 16 ohm. I had it through a vintage 30 when I wrote that review - which is a very efficient speaker I found out. I have it through a v30 and a Mojotone 25w greenback thingy - I forget the name specifically. But they're wired in parallel for 4 ohms, and with the amp cranked, I get ringing in my ears after more than 5 minutes of full volume.

    Through a les paul with a pgb, at full blast, this thing sounds righteous. I mean that - the snarly midrange of the pgb is a perfect compliment for the amp. I swapped the pgb for a 59/custom, with UOA5, which IMO is also very good, but the low midrange makes the guitar sound heavy (vs. mean with the pgb). Playing the les paul through it makes me understand the "les paul, marshall, cord" school of thought. It only does one sound. But, God - what a sound.

    My favorite guitar through this amp though, is a homebrew telecaster deluxe with a Jerry Donahue bridge, and the equivalent of a seth neck (kind of), and 500k pots all around. The clean sound is very distinctly un-fender - you don't have that "bounce" or whatever you call it. Instead it's like playing a bottle of old scotch. Smooth and rich, and just so good. Jazz chords ring out with a clarity that I can only describe as haunting. Because the pickups in the telecaster are so much lower output, I also have basically the entire volume knob, which is where the pedals come in.

    I may expose myself as a luddite here, but I don't know why people need to add gain stages to amplifiers. My telecaster --> GGG Marshall Bluesbreaker Clone --> Baby will, is enough gain for anything I would ever, ever, want to do. It's harmonically rich, and maybe because telecaster bridges are supposed to be slightly microphonic, pinch harmonics just jump out. FWIW, the MBB clone is also on high level/low drive, so it's (mostly) causing the preamp tubes to clip.

    The volume control is super useful in getting a clean sound, but it's not "touch sensitive" in the sense that I could tweak the volume knob slightly and still keep up with a drummer while achieving a pristine clean sound. 18w is not a lot of headroom and no matter how good the sound is, it just isn't an end-all be-all amp. I mean, if you had like 30 of these amps a la brian may, then yes. But as a desert island amp, unless you have a really good sound guy you're limited to medium sized indoor stuff.

    In the abstract, "how good does it sound" category, I give it five out of five stars. I'm seriously very happy with it. If the score takes into account how loud you can play cleanly, then I would give it closer to something else. I'm going to have to revise this post in the morning.

  2. #62
    watch where you point that sword Phantasmagoria's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Amp Review Thread

    I've had this for a few months now & I have time on my hands/it's been a whole lot of fun so I thought I'd do a review:


    Click image for larger version. 

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    Randall T2HL:

    100 watt MIC version of the older T2 (which is 400 watts & 'assembled' in the US). Mike Amott (Arch Enemy) & Gus G (Firewind) have sig versions of this (T2) amp tweaked to their specs. So that's pretty much the sort of sound they put out. Apparently this 100 watt version (T2HL) has a slightly rounder/smoother/wetter (less abbrassive) character to it's gain than it's big brother/predecessor.. the 400 watt T2.

    It's an SS/tube hybrid (Full 3x12AX7 tube preamp & a SS/mosfet power section buffered by a single 12AT7 tube). Sounds very tubey and feels way tubey too..more so than any SS/hybid amp I've played (Valvestate/XXL/MG/RG series etc). Tons of thick, saturated, swirling/phase shifting distortion for days if you need it. (Recto/5150 levels without the noise).

    Can get super tight & punchy depending on how you dial it in. The bass/lower mids on this thing is phenomenal, very rich, controlled & deep..will cut through like a knife even with really dark lower-mid-heavy death metal/doom tones. It will also produce biting upper-middy 80's metal or thrash tones (using the mid sweep knob) & fat, earthy/open bluesy/hard rock tones with the gain dialled back. If you want delicate edge-of-break-up tones..look elsewhere..lol...this thing is a metal beast!

    The cleans however, are surprising good & extremely usable for anything from clear/percussive funky stuff to those Metallica intro-type bits.

    Lead tones are sweet, tubey & harmonically rich & can be dialled in for screaming bite or full-sounding bluesy warmth. Overall, The mid "Sweep" control is very useful in changing the character/frequency of the mids this thing produces. The "Density" control increases/decreases lower mid saturation & changes the response of the amp a lot. Can be used to tighten loosen/open up the feel...but I would'nt say it's like a tight/loose switch .it does something else to the sound/response as well..affects the wetness/dryness etc as well.

    This amp sounds great at low volumes.. once again, playing with the density/sweep knobs works wonders, but when you turn it up past 2'oclock..that when it really comes to life in a way that is pretty awesome to experience haha. It has a crazy amount of headroom ...pushes a ton of air & windows rattle/stuff starts falling off shelves all around you. The dynamics & resonsiveness are just nuts. Palm mutes are like roundhouse kicks to the face & your feet feel like they're lifting off the floor with each chug...good times

    Finally..build quality is excellent. Nice tolex, leather handle, thick metal grille in front. Tranny looks big & it's fan cooled. Not given me a moments trouble since I got it..& it's been gigged with a few times.

    All in all, this is a fantastic sounding amp for metal of any kind. It can go from old-school nwobhm to power metal to thrash/melodeath to brutal death in a heartbeat. Tons of grit & very low noise..even when cranked. Churns out some brilliant tones I never thought I'd hear from an SS amp.

    The demo below does'nt even begin to display what's possible or the huge range of tones available with a bit of tweaking. Bedroom volume, Crappy mic, outside noise, low record levels, handheld recorder, bad mic placement & it still sounds cool...haha.

    I think this retails for $599 or something, but I got mine for $400 + shipping (floor model) & it's been way, way more than worth it. I'd pick it over many amps costing 3-4 times the price. No ****.. It's that good.




    Youtube:




    Mic'd (45 / 1" off-centre - against the grille) with a cheap chinese SM57 knock-off plugged into the 3.5mm mic input of my digital handheld recorder.

    Single recorded track - (speaking/bedroom volume)

    No reverb/effects in front or in the loop. No pre/post production.

    EQ unchanged for all clips except for minor tweaking of the "Sweep " & "Density" controls from clip to clip.

    Amp control settings @ 4:58 in the video

    Guitar: Jackson Dk2 - Lace Alumitone Deathbucker pup in the bridge.

    Watch @ 480p for (slightly) better sound..




    .wav @ Soundcloud:






    Lead/solo clips to come later when the spirit moves me...
    "Less is less, more is more...how can less be more?" ~Yngwie J Malmsteen

    Quote Originally Posted by Rodney Gene View Post
    If you let your tone speak for itself you'll find alot less people join the conversation.


    Youtube

    Bandcamp

  3. #63
    watch where you point that sword Phantasmagoria's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Amp Review Thread

    aaaaaannnd ...the spirit moved me pretty quick.....love this big brutal bruiser

    Another video /more clips (couple of lead/solo licks this time) ..this one's with my BC rich Ironbiird /EMG 81 in the bridge

    Levels were set a bit low again (wish I could get the hang of this ..there's always some noise & hiss) , but this time ..figured out I needed to switch off the recorder's phantom power to the mic when recording (it's a dynamic mic). That really improved the quality of the recording (less harsh & less noise) compared to my other video with my Jackson Dk2/Lace Alumitone deathbucker. Also I think mic placement was better this time around..

    Anyway:

    Guitar: BC Rich Ironbird Pro

    Amp: Randall T2HL (100 watt Tube/SS hybrid head)

    Cab: Bugera 4x12

    Single dry guitar track, no reverb or effects. No pre/post production.

    Recorded with an SM 57 clone against the cab grille - plugged into an iKey Audio HDR7 digital handheld recorder.

    Random power chord chugs, a riff or two & a few licks..

    Ice pick attack warning @ 0:27 Played that too high up


    "Less is less, more is more...how can less be more?" ~Yngwie J Malmsteen

    Quote Originally Posted by Rodney Gene View Post
    If you let your tone speak for itself you'll find alot less people join the conversation.


    Youtube

    Bandcamp

  4. #64
    Senior Member Normie's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Amp Review Thread

    To add the great amp review from brother Phantasmagoria,
    here's a clip a made for Randall T2HL

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ntENrzJnONs

  5. #65
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    Default Re: The Amp Review Thread

    CARVIN X100B

    The Carvin X100 is a 2 channel, 100 watt power house of an amp that has a 5 band assignable active EQ. The gain channel has a high gain switch that really bumps the gain to pretty high levels and the 5 band EQ lets you really fine tune your sound. I have heard people complain that the X100B has a fuzzy gain sound, but I completely disagree. below is a link of a ty tabor like tone I dial in quickly one day to demo the amp. the distortion is all amp the only effect is a corona chorus to get close to ty's sound.
    https://soundcloud.com/stream

    channel 1 : (clean channel) this channel is simply beautiful and stunning. it has a very fenderish clean quality, but in my opinion is better then fenders clean. the only reason why say its better is that it is bright but full at the same time. I did a youtube video to show case this channel.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kJ_L1l8Yevk

    channel 2 : (gain channel) this channel is very versitle. in the low gain setting it can give you the smoothest smokey blues sound you can get. if you drive the gain up it can give you a great classic rock / southern rock sound. if you flip up the high gain switch you can really nail the 80's hair metal sound and if you drive gain up then you get metallica level gain. even with the gain maxed out it still maintains a certain amount of smoothness and it is extremely responsive to the guitars volume pots.

    pros: cons:
    has scalable wattage 25 / 50 / 100 watts the only thing that would make the amp better would to be able to switch between high and low gain with the footswitch
    great reverb
    5 band active EQ
    footswitchable effects loop
    xlr line out
    price: the amp brand new runs 599.00

    all in all this is the best amp I have ever played. I own a blackstar ht stage 60, and a marshall jvm 205h and they haven't been played since I got this carvin. I really feel like an idiot for not giving them a chance before now.

  6. #66
    Member Jason_The_Angry's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Amp Review Thread

    Peavey 6505 + 112 60 Watt combo:
    Here’s a quick review of the 6505 +112 combo, in both stock and modded form.

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    Features:
    - 60 Watts, all tube: four 12AX7’s up front, two 6L6’s for power
    - Two channels with a “crunch” button on the clean side (making for 2.5 channels?)
    - 1 x 12” speaker in a sealed cab
    - Two speaker outs
    - Mono effects loop
    - Microphone out, for DI or recording
    - Reverb

    Out of the box….
    This a Chinese built Peavey, which leads to the much lower price point of around $550 USD on the street.
    The amp weighs in at over 60 lbs. I recommend adding some handles to the side or some casters to the bottom if you’re planning on gigging with this thing. Otherwise, the cab is solid, and the controls are recessed, so it’s easy to lay the amp down in the car without fear of damaging front controls. Inside the amp, it’s essentially printed circuit board mounted components. I did have an issue with some bad soldering joints from the factory leading to my power section dying unexpectedly, but Jim Hill at VVT Amps in Waldorf MD solved the issue quickly.

    The channel structure is broken into two independent channels, with a “crunch” button on the clean channel. This adds additional dimension to the amp, but does not make it a true three channel amp since the clean and crunch share the same eq. Each channel contains a three band eq, with separate resonance and presence controls for each channel. The eq section seems limited by the mid control. The bass and treble knobs provide sufficient control for booming bass and piercing highs, but the mid knobs seem to have a much more subtle effect. It’s possible that the frequency range for the mid control is offset a little too high. In the end, it’s almost impossible to scoop out the mids to an extreme degree. This is not an issue for me, but others may be looking for a more “brutal” tone. An eq pedal might be an easy fix here.

    The resonance and presence controls provide additional shaping over the bass and treble responses respectively. Bumping up the resonance increases the bass response, which is wonderful for palm mute chugging. Bumping up the presence increases the mid-highs and highs, leading to greater ability to cut through the mix. These controls seem to have less drastic effects than the eq, but can be helpful for dialing in a tone. I have used them in live settings when I needed to make some minor changes on the fly.

    Each channel also has pre and post gain controls. I view them as gain and volume knobs. The pre acts as the traditional gain knob, and the post as volume. I will warn you, the volume controls are very touchy. The volume difference between “1” and “2” is huge. This amp goes from “I can hear it” to “OH GOD, IS THAT BLOOD IN MY EARS?!” in a very small turn of the post-gain knob. It likes to be loud, and the tone does get better as you crank it. If you’re in a small living space, I hope your friends/family/neighbors like your guitar playing… they will hear it. Pretty impressive for a single 12” speaker.

    Tones:
    Like many of the 5150 variants, this amp is primarily known for its distortion channel. For those of you looking for a more mid-heavy rock and metal tone, this is the place for you. I can say that a very good representation of the Van Halen “brown sound” is only a few pedals away. However, if you’re looking for some ridiculous crushing gain with scooped mids, it’s here as well, but with some limits in terms of how much of the mids you can suck out with the amp’s controls. In stock form, the amp is excellent for rock and metal, and can be serviceable for the blues if you back off on the gain.

    The clean channel is a pleasant surprise. The earlier 5150’s and the variants I tried had a pretty ugly clean side, with what seemed like a very sterile sound. This time, the combination of eq and resonance/presence controls allows you to dial up some good sounding clean tones. I will not compare it to some 60’s Fender, but it will work for most blues, rock, and metal purposes. Pushing the gain knob past 4 rewards you with a fatter tone overall, and adds responsiveness to the pick attack. The thing that I noticed immediately is that the amp can be quite articulate and revealing in that regard. The one issue that you’ll encounter is that the clean channel will quickly distort, even at low gain settings. Rolling off on the guitar volume helps clean the channel up and still remains pleasing to the ears. If you are looking for some manner of pristine jazz tone, it’s not here. There will almost always be some manner of distortion if you play hard enough.

    The rhythm channel with crunch engaged is the most versatile on the amp. Dialing back the gain puts you square in the early AC/DC realm, while pushing the gain past 4 makes for Guns and Roses and beyond. You can conjure some serious metal tones with plenty of sustain and harmonics just by upping the pre-gain past 5. In fact, I found that the gain knob was pretty much useless past 7. Everything beyond that did not seem to make much difference, other than increasing the sustain and bass response. You could easily use this channel for soloing. The amp responds very well to pick attack and provides excellent clarity. It can be ridiculously heavy, but not grating. It does tend to have a slightly “fizzy” characteristic when the gain is pushed, but it’s not obnoxious. You have all the gain you need right here. If not, there’s still the lead channel!

    The lead channel is much like the rhythm, but with more gain and top end frequencies. Again, more gain than you will ever need. Sustain for days in the land of shred. If you’re a fan of a more scooped and mechanical sounding distortion, it’s here. This channel cuts very well due to the emphasis on higher frequencies.

    A few other notes: I found the reverb to be nearly useless. It’s not unpleasant, just not very present. Even all the way up, it’s subtle. My recommendation would be to use a pedal (I use a Strymon Blue Sky in the effects loop and it’s wonderful). Some folks have mentioned a noise level and tone shift with the effects loop use. I have not noticed it. I haven’t tried the DI either, since I mic my amps.

    Now the modded part:
    I wanted the amp to be a little more flexible and to change the fizzyness at high settings. I chose to re-tube the amp and replace the speaker. My goal was to REDUCE the gain across the channels and try to adjust some of the overall tone with a new speaker. Here are the mods:
    V1 – 5751 from JJ’s tubes (it’s a 70% gain 12AX7)
    V2-4 - 7025’s from Tube Amp Doctor (select 12AX7’s)
    V5 – 12AT7 or ECC81 gold pin from JJ’s Tubes
    V6-7 – 6L6GC (matched) from Tube Amp Doctor
    Celestion Vintage 30, 16 Ohm speaker

    With these mods, I was able to have a more useable gain structure. The gain knobs became more useful by allowing for a greater range of distortion. The clean channel is cleaner, and I can still achieve ridiculous metal tones in the rhythm and lead channels when the gain is cranked. I believe the amp became even more articulate and “chimey”. It can be unforgiving in some cases, since it reveals the nuances of your playing. When you’re good, you know it. When you suck, you know that too. I appreciate this aspect, since I believe it encourages me to continue to hone my chops.The speaker change added a little more bass response and smoothed out the high end some. It changed the mid characteristics, but not to the point of muddying the tone. Overall, I’m pleased with the new speaker. The combination of the tubes and speaker rectified most of the issues I had with the tone of the amp. For greater flexibility, I now run a Way Huge Green Rhino overdrive up front. This allows me to push every channel on the amp a little further, allowing for even more tonal possibilities. Also, running this amp through a 2x12 or 4x12 leads to some awesome opportunities as well. When I plugged this thing in to a Genz Benz G-Flex 2x12, the bass response was crushing and yet tight. I now use the two together.

    Summary:
    This is a wonderfully chunky sounding amp. The mid presence is a strong characteristic, and it can be endearing if you like that sort of thing. It’s really hard to beat the price to performance ratio of this amp for rock and metal. At 60W, it’s still ridiculously loud, and you have plenty of juice to drive your external cabinet of choice. Since this thing is so affordable, I’m not as afraid to mod it. With some easy changes, it can be more flexible than you’d expect. If you’re out shopping for a new metal amp, and would prefer not to spend $2000 on a head alone, I would seriously consider taking a look at this amp. It’s now one of my favorites.
    Last edited by Jason_The_Angry; 01-03-2015 at 10:35 AM. Reason: poor proofreading the first time
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  7. #67
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    Default Re: The Amp Review Thread

    Marshall 205H

    features:

    This head is 50 watts, has 2 channels, dual assignable reverb, dual master volume that is also assignable. The amp features 2 different effects loop, the series loop is like anormal effects loop that is always on, but the parallel loop allows you to determine how much of the effect is run through the amp (in other words if you set the effect level at 0 the amp will be completely dry, at 5 the amp will have 50% wet 50% dry, at 10 you have all wet signal). The parallel loop is assignable. the amp comes with a very flexible and assignable 4 button footswitch, the foot switch can be assigned to change between the master volumes, reverbs, change channel, and toggle the parallel loop on or off. The foot switch can also be set up to store the sounds you like for quick recall on the fly. OK on to the amp channels themselves.

    Channel 1:

    I need to start by saying that each channel has three modes (green, orange & red) the first channel can be cycled between all 3 modes by simply stepping on the foot switch button to select that channel or you can define which mode you want and store it to any button on the foot switch. Follows are the sounds of each mode on channel one.

    Green mode:
    the green mode on channel one is by far the best clean channel that Marshall has ever mode, very little grit but not really a fender clean either. this is the best description I can come up with for this mode and channel.

    Orange mode:
    on channel one the orange mode is the same circuit that was in the JTM45 made famous by players like gary more and angus young. this mode is not a hot rod distortion mode by any stretch but more of a dirty bluesy tone.

    Red mode:
    on channel on the red mode is like a JCM800. think classic marshall tone that can breathe fire when really pushed and opened up, but still is a little tame at lower volumes.

    Channel 2:
    channel 2 has the same three modes as channel on but with different sounds.

    Green mode: this mode on channel 2 is similar to the red channel on channel one, but to me it seems to have more volume and a bit more distortion (JCM900 territory)

    Orange mode: this mode on channel 2 is more like a hot rodded JCM900. There is considerable gain in volume and distortion between green and orange modes at this point because this mode adds an additional gain structure to the amp.

    Red mode: this mode on channel 2 adds another gain stage on top of what the orange mode offered which gives you an insane amount of gain on tap. this mode is great for the new detuned metal and is so saturated it just sings for leads.

    overview:
    out of all of the amps I own this amp is the most flexible and is a joy to play live with you can acces and channel and mode just by cycling the footswitch which is great. and it gives you the flexibility to go from playing slipknot to aerosmith to Vince gill to what ever you can imagine simple by selecting the proper mode and channel. the down side to the amp is that sometimes if you have to cycle through multiple effects while change channels and modes during a song you find your self doing the river dance. which is cool if that's what you want, but can get frustrating and really screw you up while trying to play.

  8. #68
    Tone Member Maggot's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Amp Review Thread

    Laney Pro Tube AOR 30 1x12:

    It's a lot of amp for the 2 bills that I spent on it!

    This is a Master-Volume 1x12 master volume combo from the early 80s. It's got three 12ax7s and two 6V6 power tubes. It is not truly a channel switching amp. You can footswitch between levels of gain, but the controls are too interactive to dial in one clean setting at a volume you want and do the same for distortion. It's doable but it's a compromise. That said, both the cleans and the distortions are badass, and the amp gives you a lot of variables to work with. It's a 1x12 with a closed back so it can sound slightly beamy and boxy at high volumes, but it also has a kick that most small combos don't have. It opens up considerably when you plug it in to a larger cabinet. Most of these were shipped with Fane speakers, which were supposedly fantastic. Mine has a Celestion G1265, which is also no slouch. There are three knobs setting preamp levels, a master volume, bass, middle and treble controls, each with a pullswitch boost, reverb and presence.

    Clean sounds: there are two ways to get clean sounds out of this amp. The first is to plug into the high input, disengage the boost function, turn the preamp settings down and the master up. This gets you a flexible clean sound without a ton of headroom. Clean sounds aren't Fendery, but they are dark, syrupy and attractive. The second way to get a clean sound is to plug into the low sensitivity input. This gives you a really nice clean tone with some more headroom. If you want to have any kind of headroom at all, you need to turn the master volume up all the way, even if you won't be playing that loud. It's not the headroomiest amp in the world, but for a 2x6v6 amp, it has some power.

    Dirty sounds: The distortion preamp on this thing is badass, and unless you're looking for ultra-modern super-tight distortion, you are nearly guaranteed to find the dirty sounds you are looking for. Early Sabbath tones are downright easy to find with a boost, EVH brown sounds and 80s metal aren't more difficult. The amp has all the gain you will need, although it's great to have a boost to tighten things up. There's an inherent heaviness to most of the distortion sounds, but I imagine that if you went looking for a tamer, classic rock overdrive you could find it. There is a good variety to the textures you can get.

    How loud is it? It's loud. Even without an extension cabinet, you can easily keep up with a band, unless you're competing against guitar players who have much bigger amps. Without an extension cabinet, it's a little beamy and doesn't quite fill a room the way a larger cabinet, or even an open-backed combo does, but it's plenty loud and audible. Plug it into a 4x12 and it's fearsome.

  9. #69
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    Default Re: The Amp Review Thread

    I had an AOR PTL100 head into a Marshall 2x12 in my high school days. Total overkill, but a killer amp.

  10. #70
    Senior Member Aku Tonklips's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Amp Review Thread

    2010s Crate Flexwave 120w header and 412 cab

    Pros
    Head- Nice, sleek, perfect for the beginner/intermediate player for on/off stage and studio work. Plenty of solid state power, wide tone ranges, clean, overdrive, and high gain selestions. High volume amount and good Volume-to-Distortion ratio, no distortion on clean channels. Low weight, fixed power cable, footswitch and DSP effect jacks, tuner, effects (delay, chorus, flanger, phaser, reverb), and effect banking.

    Cab- Good speakers for price, low weight, casters, gray and black fabric weave, handles on sides, 4-8 ohms with ext. cab option, mono or stereo selections.

    Cons
    Header only- Not enough effects, slight tuner inaccuracy, bright blue led for effects switch, added bass when mod effects are on, wierd chorus to some.
    ...Cause in the interest of all involved I got the problem solved and the verdict is guilty...

  11. #71
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    Default Re: The Amp Review Thread

    Just discovered this thread and I am loving the amp reviews on here so far! I'm gonna have to start saving up more money... Dang it, you guys. I thought I was done.

    I've got a few amp reviews to add. A picture is worth a thousand words, so I guess videos are worth even more?

    1. Mesa Boogie Multi-watt Dual Rectifier: My main amp that I use for pretty much everything because it's my dream amp and it does everything well. Great cleans, more than enough gain and a thunderous bottom end make this my amp of choice.



    2. Peavey 6505+ 60W 112 Combo: I actually pair this with my Mesa Rectifier 2x12 cab now and even without all the headroom of it's big brother, it sounds pretty beast. It was my main amp for years; I've played a ton of shows with it and it hasn't let me down yet. Stock speaker is kind of crap, and new speakers/cab makes all the difference.



    3. Bugera 6262: I gotta be honest, this was an impulse buy. I didn't really need another amp, but I got it with a 3-year warranty for $190, so I pretty much had to snag it at that price. Surprisingly, it sounds great and it hasn't exploded yet!


  12. #72
    BartekBeben
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    Default Re: The Amp Review Thread

    Has Bugera served us the best cheap amp?


  13. #73
    Tone Member DMR's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Amp Review Thread

    Just thought i'd drop a quick review here of the Roland Cube Lite. I became intrigued with it when I saw demo vid of Richie Kotzen using it. Basically it's a little 10w amp with a 2.1 stereo system in it. It looks like a little stereo box that you'd typically plug an iPod into. You can use it to play guitar, listen to music, or both at the same time using the companion Cube Jam app. It's got 3 models (clean, crunch, extreme) and eq knobs for drive, bass, treble. It's also got chorus and reverb. I must say i'm pretty impressed with the tones you can pull out of this tiny box.

    The real fun is using it in conjunction with the app. Here you pull songs from your iTunes library and import them into the app. Then you can play along with the songs, you can adjust the tempo of the song and slow it way down if you're trying to learn a lick or something, and you can adjust the pitch of the song to fit your current tuning rather than having to tune your guitar up or down to accommodate a song. Very convenient. And you can also use the "center" function and remove any tracks recorded in mono (which I guess are usually vocal and lead guitar on most songs).....and so your iTunes catalogue becomes your backing band to mess around and solo over. You can also do some minor recording through the app but I haven't messed with that yet. There is also a separate volume for the app so you can fine tune the volume of your guitar in conjunction with the volume of the iTunes songs playing back.

    The unit runs on a DC adaptor (included) and comes with the cord to connect the amp to the input jack on the phone. You can also run headphones into it and play that way.

    I've had the unit since a little before Christmas and i've been having a blast with it. If you're looking for something that's compact, travels easy, and sounds good then this is worth looking at. Or even if you're just looking to have a little living room amp or something that only requires the space of a small stereo box then this is a nice option.


  14. #74
    watch where you point that sword Phantasmagoria's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Amp Review Thread

    Cicognani Brutus Live 28W SE Class A high gain head

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Specs:

    • Class A single-ended valve head
    • Valves type 4 x 12AX7 and 2 5881 (Auto-Biasing For 6V6/6L6/EL34/KT66/6550/KT88 etc.. )
    • 28W power (+/- depending on output tube type)
    • 2 Channels, 5 Sounds. Channel 1: Clean, Sexy, Crunch. Channel 2: Lead 1, Lead 2
    • Loop Effects Loop Series & Parallel - (direct / Slave Out)
    • Shared Bass Mid Treble controls + individual Gain & Volume per channel
    • Equalizer (presence) with 3 presets: Low, Medium, High
    • 6.3 mm jack output for Amp Slave/Rec out
    • Pedal Input 6.3mm jack for channel switching
    • Dimensions (WxHxD) 380x230x165 mm
    • Weight 11 kg



    Having had it for a while now I'm even more certain it's never going anywhere lol. I love just about every sound this thing produces! Gives me a LOT of tonal options ...always very usable & more often than not, totally awesome!

    It's very touch sensitive & dynamic ...depending on the output tubes can either be crisp & edgy or warm round & sweet...it always stays relatively tight though & bass tends to never get boomy or uncontrollable, no matter the setting, even though there's plenty of it on tap. The tonestack is perfect in that way..

    This amp is very sensitive to different pickups/guitars/cables and the differences are immediately obvious as soon as you change your gear around. It really bring out the tones of the different instruments you're playing, while always maintaining it's own familiar sound all the while.

    Tonally, while it's got it's own thing going on, it's pretty easy to dial in a lot of my favourite guiatr tones, both rhythm & lead. The versatility of this little amp is through the roof. It goes from very convincing AC/DC to VH to 70's Priest/Iron Maiden 80's metal to just about anything (doom/death metal ..it's all in there.) The basic tone is really open/thick/meaty ...it roars like a Marshall/Hot rodded JCM 800/Slo, but can also do convincing recto tones on the 2nd lead channel which has a sickening amount of gain on tap. This channel sits somewhere tonally /gain-wise between a (heavily) hot-rodded Marshall & a Dual Recto ....it's that heavy

    Lead 1 is quite different & is very dynamic with tons of harmonic overtones, very classic 70's/80's sounding...with more than enough gain for lead playing of any sort...from Jimmy Page to Michael Romeo. It goes from medium crunch to pretty ****ing heavy..

    The Clean channel handles just about any sort of jazz-to-classic rock tone there is...most of them very well. Combining the channel toggle switching options (clean/crunch/sexy) with the 3 Presence presets (1."treble & bass boost" Vs. 2."high mid boost with extra edge" Vs. 3."treble & presence boost") gives literally endless tonal/textural options..



    Cons:

    It has a tad more idling noise than my other amps (not much..just with your ear to the speaker) ...maybe from being Single ended(?) Nothing very obvious though just a slight barely audible hum when you take it off standby.

    Can be slightly buzzy on certain settings with certain output tubes at whisper soft bedroom levels (can be EQ'd out) ...never buzzy when you turn it up a bit though!



    Output Tubes I've tried so far:

    JJ EL34's (very nice - classic Marshall tones!), Sovtek 5881's (stock tubes..also great..very crisp/crunchy and balanced sound), Chinese coke bottle 6L6's (pretty sweet, slightly scooped in the mids), Shuguang EL34B's (Not bad but sounded a bit brittle...I think they need a bit of burning in first) & the Russian 6P3S-E's that are in there right now (A bit rounder/darker, but sound really great!)





    All switching Options (Loop Demo):




    Crunch (Running Through Presence Settings: 1-2-3)
    Sexy (Running Through Presence Settings: 1-2-3)
    Lead 1 (Running Through Presence Settings: 1-2-3)
    Lead 2 (Running Through Presence Settings: 1-2-3)
    Clean (Running Through Presence Settings: 1-2-3)



    EQ/Gain Settings (Unchanged For Demo)


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    Treble - 4
    Bass - 4
    Mid - 6
    Clean Channel Gain - 7
    Dirty Channel Gain - 6
    Volume - 1.5 (Conversation level)




    LEAD Channel (Lead 1)



    (EQ+Presence Preset) Switch Position #1 (0:00-1:24)
    (EQ+Presence Preset) Switch Position #2 (1:25-2:47)
    (EQ+Presence Preset) Switch Position #3 (2:48-4:12)



    LEAD Channel (Lead 2)



    Thrash riff: Lead 2 (Toggle-switching between presets 1-2-3)

    Shred Lick: Lead 2 (Toggle-switching between presets 1-2-3)

    Scorpions riff: Lead 2 (Toggle-switching between presets 1-2-3)

    Played that half a a step lower than I should have..lol (I'm tuned to Eb)

    EQ:

    Treble: 6
    Mids: 6
    Bass: 6
    Gain: 6
    Volume: 1



    Guitar: Jackson DK2 (Lace Alumitone Deathbucker Bridge) tuned to Eb (9-42 strings)

    Brutus Live's Direct/Slave out -> AMT CN-1 Cab Sim Pedal -> Digital Handheld Recorder (Line Input)

    No Effects/Pre/Post Production.






    Jamming a solo on lead-1



    Direct/Slave out to my AMT CN-1 Cab simulator pedal ..& out into a digital handheld recorder. Some reverb/delay (in the loop) from my Zoom G1Xon FX processor. Backing rhythm track (guitar/simulated bass/drums) from my Nux Loop Core loop pedal ...no post production ...Done!
    Last edited by Phantasmagoria; 04-20-2016 at 10:10 PM.
    "Less is less, more is more...how can less be more?" ~Yngwie J Malmsteen

    Quote Originally Posted by Rodney Gene View Post
    If you let your tone speak for itself you'll find alot less people join the conversation.


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  15. #75
    Tone Member mjsmanahan35's Avatar
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    Default Re: And thou'

    Line 6 Spider IV HD150 with Line 6 4X12 Speaker Cabinet with Celestion Speakers.

    Signal Chain: Ibanez Prestige RG1527 with Seymour Duncan Blackouts AHB-1 pickups - Ibanez Weeping Demon Wah - ISP Decimator II Noise Gate - Ibanez Tube Screamer Mini - Behringer TU100 Chromatic Tuner - Mesa Boogie Throttle Box Distortion - Blackstar HT- Metal - Line 6 Spider IV HD150 - Zoom Q3HD Video Camera.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B4H1WhY99wE

    Maschalismos Band Page: https://www.facebook.com/maschalismos

  16. #76
    Tone Member mjsmanahan35's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Amp Review Thread

    https://youtu.be/GkBTP_hU6FE Line 6 Spider IV HD 150

    Sent from my SM-G900T using Tapatalk

  17. #77
    Tone Member mjsmanahan35's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Amp Review Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by mjsmanahan35 View Post
    https://youtu.be/GkBTP_hU6FE Line 6 Spider IV HD 150 Watts

    Sent from my SM-G900T using Tapatalk


    Sent from my SM-G900T using Tapatalk

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