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Thread: $500-900 used amp to replace Krankenstein 100 watt

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    Default $500-900 used amp to replace Krankenstein 100 watt

    Hello,
    Have a Krankenstein 100 watt head running into Mesa 2 12, Les Paul with a Duncan Distortion. I actually like the amp a lot. But a play in standard tuning and lower chords with sometimes four notes. And at times it gets a little bit blurred or muddy. This is my writing style and I do not want to change it.

    Does anyone have suggestions on an amp in this price range that will give note clarity BUT STILL SOUND A LITTLE DARKER. The 5150 iii is in this range and will give note clarity but does not sound dark.

    I have been looking at a the Engl Fireball 60. And when I hear other people play it, it sounds like it would be great for my goals. I do have some reservations with this one too. I had owned a ENGL Screamer and the response never felt right to me. Almost a little digital. But it could have been that model or maybe that amp had been modified. I buy everything used.

    Any suggestions will be appreciated. Thanks

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    Tone Member shupe13's Avatar
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    Default Re: $500-900 used amp to replace Krankenstein 100 watt

    Blackstar


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    Mojo's Minions dystrust's Avatar
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    Default Re: $500-900 used amp to replace Krankenstein 100 watt

    Quote Originally Posted by redsparkleLP View Post
    Hello,
    Have a Krankenstein 100 watt head running into Mesa 2 12, Les Paul with a Duncan Distortion. I actually like the amp a lot. But a play in standard tuning and lower chords with sometimes four notes. And at times it gets a little bit blurred or muddy. This is my writing style and I do not want to change it.

    Does anyone have suggestions on an amp in this price range that will give note clarity BUT STILL SOUND A LITTLE DARKER. The 5150 iii is in this range and will give note clarity but does not sound dark.

    I have been looking at a the Engl Fireball 60. And when I hear other people play it, it sounds like it would be great for my goals. I do have some reservations with this one too. I had owned a ENGL Screamer and the response never felt right to me. Almost a little digital. But it could have been that model or maybe that amp had been modified. I buy everything used.

    Any suggestions will be appreciated. Thanks
    When was the last time you replaced the preamp tubes in your Krankenstein? The tone issues you're describing could easily be caused by worn out preamp tubes, or ones that are simply a poor match for the amp or your playing style. Muddy frequently points to worn out, while poor note definition is a typical characteristic of the cheap Chinese tubes many manufacturers ship their amps with.

    It's also possible that you're running the preamp gain higher than you really need. The Distortion is a pretty hot pickup, and the Krankenstein has a truckload of gain, so I could imagine note definition disappearing pretty quickly with the preamp run too hot.
    Quote Originally Posted by crusty philtrum View Post
    And that's probably because most people with electric guitars seem more interested in their own performance rather than the effect on the listener ... in fact i don't think many people who own electric guitars even give a poop about the effect on a listener. Which is why many people play electric guitars but very very few of them are actually musicians.

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    Default Re: $500-900 used amp to replace Krankenstein 100 watt

    Changing pre amp tubes. Well, never. I had read that somewhere that replacing before failure may not change tone. But maybe they were talking about another type of tube. But you got me thinking to try this before anything drastic because I do like the amp. And considering how much dust is inside that amp, and the last owner's statement that he really never played it, makes me think they may have never been changed. Also, another point to have them changed is minor rust on the screws of the name plate, making me think it had been kept in a damp place its whole life. Like a basement.

    Gain too high. Yes, I am guilty of this. Lower volumes have me doing this. So I will back the gain off and see what happens. My gut hunch is that if I can ever get somewhere to play the amp at a loud volume, I will find that I need less distortion, and then the clarity of notes will be strong.

    Thanks for the suggestions.
    Last edited by redsparkleLP; 01-06-2018 at 09:36 AM. Reason: clarity of point

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    Mojo's Minions dystrust's Avatar
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    Default Re: $500-900 used amp to replace Krankenstein 100 watt

    Quote Originally Posted by redsparkleLP View Post
    Changing pre amp tubes. Well, never. I had read that somewhere that replacing before failure may not change tone. But maybe they were talking about another type of tube. But you got me thinking to try this before anything drastic because I do like the amp. And considering how much dust is inside that amp, and the last owner's statement that he really never played it, makes me think they may have never been changed. Also, another point to have them changed is minor rust on the screws of the name plate, making me think it had been kept in a damp place its whole life. Like a basement.
    In light of this new info, you should probably just take the amp to a tech and have it checked out. In addition to warn preamp tubes, the power tubes may also be on the way out or perhaps the bias has drifted. Tube amps need periodic maintenance to sound their best, and I still take mine to a tech once in a while even though I do a lot of the basic maintenance myself.
    Quote Originally Posted by crusty philtrum View Post
    And that's probably because most people with electric guitars seem more interested in their own performance rather than the effect on the listener ... in fact i don't think many people who own electric guitars even give a poop about the effect on a listener. Which is why many people play electric guitars but very very few of them are actually musicians.

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    Ultimate Tone Member Hot Octopus's Avatar
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    Default Re: $500-900 used amp to replace Krankenstein 100 watt

    If its not the tubes, check out Stiff amps. Its Tony Krank's new company. A Framus Dragon also might work
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    Default Re: $500-900 used amp to replace Krankenstein 100 watt

    I think the 5150 III would do well if you don't succeed at changing the preamp tubes. I also would recommend one of the Hughes & Kettner grandmeister series.
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