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Thread: 5150 III 50 vs Friedman BE 50 and questions

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    Professional Scapegoat BloodRose's Avatar
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    Default 5150 III 50 vs Friedman BE 50 and questions

    Im selling off alot of my guitars. Need the room, need the money and as much as I love em all, don't need that many guitars.. So... Thinking that if I move enough, I may pick up another amp, just for more flavors.

    Im looking at the 5150 III 50 watt for one. I love the 5150 sounds. And the reviews I hear of the 50 watt sound like it is almost favored to the 100 watt for a few reasons. Since I cant blast loud very often, would I be sacrificing anything by going with the 50?
    Next, there is the 6L6 vs EL34. I cant try and compare both, so can someone tell me how the tonally differ? Im leaning toward the 6L6 as that is the original platform and IIRC nearly all the previous 5150 amps were 6L6, so I figure they were designed that way for a reason. Plus, I do already have an EL34 amp.

    Next, Ive always lusted for a Friedman BE100, but they are out of reach, and the 50 watt really is too... But, if I dont continue to lose my butt on all my sales and can swing one, Id def entertain the idea.
    Anyone played the 50 and 100 that can tell me how they differ in tone? Basically, besides headroom and pure thunder, would I be sacrificing anything tonally by going with the 50?

    Then ultimately, can anyone tell me the tonal differences tween the BE 50 vs the 5150 III that would make it worth the 2 1/2 times the price? I know the build would be better and I know of Dave's mojo. I am planning to buy the BE pedal as Ive heard you can get very close with that..

    One more VERY important question... Since the 5150 III is most likely what I MAY be able to swing, Ivory or black? haha I love the looks of the Ivory, but worry it would be hard to keep looking nice. Though, I probably need not worry much if Im not dragging it out on the road..

    Thanks for any and all input!
    Believe me when I say that some of the most amazing music in history was made on equipment that's not as good as what you own right now.

    Jol Dantzig

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    Mojo's Minions dystrust's Avatar
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    Default Re: 5150 III 50 vs Friedman BE 50 and questions

    I don't personally care for 5150s, but I'll do my best to help out where I can.

    For most amps (Mesas, Marshalls, etc) there isn't a ton of daylight between 50W and 100W in terms of absolute volume; the 100W will be thicker sounding and have more headroom on the clean channel, but should sound very similar otherwise. Many 100W heads are tighter and more stiff feeling than their 50W counterparts, but that's amp-dependent. Honestly either of them make very little sense unless you're gigging in venues with little or no PA support. The extra tightness may also help metal rhythm playing at gig volume, but I doubt you'd notice at volumes below noise complaint levels. I've owned a 100W Marshall Jubilee since 2001, but I hardly play it these days because my Mini Jube sounds almost identical without being unbearably loud or heavy. I could absolutely turn down the (excellent) master on the 2555, but that doesn't help the feel of the amp or the fact that the head itself weighs nearly 50lbs. Regarding black vs. ivory, my 2555 (black) is pretty beat up because it's been gigged for years, while my 2525 (silver) still looks new because it rarely leaves the house. Hopefully that'll change in the not too distant future, but my amps are tools not museum pieces.

    The question of EL-34 vs 6L6 is totally amp dependent. The 2525 can run both and the difference is huge, probably due to being cathode biased IMO. I don't have enough experience with 5150IIIs, but on Rectos and H&K Triamps the difference between the two is far more modest. Generally speaking EL-34s have tighter bass, more aggressive mids, and a different high end response. 6L6s OTOH are the Recto sound everyone's familiar with from rock radio starting in the late 90s and early 00s.
    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 Slacker Red_Label's Avatar
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    Default Re: 5150 III 50 vs Friedman BE 50 and questions

    You already know the answer to this question man!

    I had a 2015 BE100 and it was awesome. The Deluxe 50 has far more tonal options, and the clean is better. I should have my BE50 in the man cave by the end of next week.

    Regarding Friedman pedals... I've had the original BE-OD, Dirty Shirley, and the new BE-OD Deluxe. The latter is crazy versatile. Yes, with a good clean tone to start with, you do get that Friedman mojo with his pedals. If you end-up getting a 5150-III, I would keep your eyes peeled for a BE-OD Deluxe to play into the clean channel of the 5150. That pedal pretty much gives you a Friedman head.
    "Always remember... all you do in life, comes back to you" - Roy Kahn, formerly of Kamelot, during the intro to "Karma" on their One Cold Winter's Night DVD

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    Professional Scapegoat BloodRose's Avatar
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    Default Re: 5150 III 50 vs Friedman BE 50 and questions

    Thank you both for the input!!
    Dystrust, you confirmed what I thought as far as headroom and wattage/tube differences. I just wanted to make sure my think was on track.
    Red Label, again thanks for confirmation! I usually read all your posts as I get my amp ya yas vicariously thru you! haha
    I had forgotten that they released the deluxe pedal, so Im glad I asked. So the BE 50 has more variation and I assume doesnt fall short anywhere since you are getting one..? Due to cost restrictions, I will probably have to go the pedal route. I wanted a red bogner pedal until Friedman released their pedals.
    Believe me when I say that some of the most amazing music in history was made on equipment that's not as good as what you own right now.

    Jol Dantzig

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    Ultimate Tone Slacker Red_Label's Avatar
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    Default Re: 5150 III 50 vs Friedman BE 50 and questions

    Quote Originally Posted by BloodRose View Post
    Thank you both for the input!!
    Dystrust, you confirmed what I thought as far as headroom and wattage/tube differences. I just wanted to make sure my think was on track.
    Red Label, again thanks for confirmation! I usually read all your posts as I get my amp ya yas vicariously thru you! haha
    I had forgotten that they released the deluxe pedal, so Im glad I asked. So the BE 50 has more variation and I assume doesnt fall short anywhere since you are getting one..? Due to cost restrictions, I will probably have to go the pedal route. I wanted a red bogner pedal until Friedman released their pedals.
    I think you'll love the Friedman BE-OD Deluxe man. I've got a small Bogner Blue (my 2nd one) that's awesome as well. Reinhold's pedals do as great of a job at getting his amps tones, as Dave's pedals. I've had several each of the Bogner Blue and Red small and large pedals at this point. They're awesome. But the gain seems bigger/fatter and yet tighter on the Friedman pedals to my ears. I used to have an XTC Classic head that I kinda miss (as well as a 101B for a short time, that I don't), but that's been years and I had it before I started going through the Friedman amps. I have little doubt that if I was to get another XTC and compare it side-by-side with the BE50... the Friedman would easily come out on top for me. The 50 doesn't fall short anywhere man. My buddy's only getting rid of it because he wants the scalable wattage feature, and the plexi cleans of the new BE100. I don't care about either of those things, and since I only have a single 4x12 cab at the moment (loaded with H30s on bottom, and EVH Greenbacks on top)… the 50 watt head is more than enough. I'm over the whole "big iron" thing I used to be into. I loved the headroom and punch of 100 watt heads, but it's really just not necessary for me anymore. I still have my Surreal LC100 head (the gain is very Friedman-esque), and I rarely ever use it in 100 watt mode... preferring to leave it in 20-watt mode most of the time. I'll likely use the BE50 in its reduced power mode as well. But I've only played one in the shop before, so we'll see what I prefer when it's plugged into my head and running in my studio.
    "Always remember... all you do in life, comes back to you" - Roy Kahn, formerly of Kamelot, during the intro to "Karma" on their One Cold Winter's Night DVD

    http://www.soundcloud.com/jwflamenco

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    Ultimate Tone Slacker Red_Label's Avatar
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    Default Re: 5150 III 50 vs Friedman BE 50 and questions

    I just updated my FBI-NAD thread tonight after spending a couple of hours with the new BE50... MMMMM... DROOL...
    "Always remember... all you do in life, comes back to you" - Roy Kahn, formerly of Kamelot, during the intro to "Karma" on their One Cold Winter's Night DVD

    http://www.soundcloud.com/jwflamenco

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