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  1. #1
    Romeo Delight
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    12.31.69 @ 04:00 PM
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    I was looking in my Musician Friend catalog and I saw the Marshall JCM 800 and the discription said it was the real amp behind Ed's tone from 1981 to 1990 or something to that effect. What??? Maybe they mean that the new JCM 800 sound is taken from the 60s Marshall Super Lead or something! Ed's 66-67 Super Lead is the amp I thought he played for most of his career albums. Or did he use a few 800 for live stuff?
    "When I found the guitar, I refused to take lessons. This was my <br />real emotional release, and I didn't want to be taught how to <br />approach the instrument." Eddie Van Halen<br /><br />"While I believe our band will be most triumphant, the truth is Wyld Stallions will never be a super band until we get Eddie Van Halen on guitar." Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure

  2. #2
    Sinner's Swing! Rick S's Avatar
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    06.23.17 @ 09:49 PM
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    theres a debate about this on here sometimes. i think people were saying he used jmp heads sometimes or maybe 800 s but they were most likely modded. but the core of eds sound through out the years was his plexi super leads.
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    Romeo Delight
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    12.31.69 @ 04:00 PM
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    Oh, I'm sure he used it. He's used everything for Christ's sake. It could be made of tin foil and gum, but if it worked at all he'd use it. As for the real sound bit....I don't think so. Maybe they are trying to say this amp captures that vintage Leads/Mar. tone, but it wasn't his main amp. Least to my knowledge anyway.

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  4. #4
    Eruption
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    12.31.69 @ 04:00 PM
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    I'm sure I saw a pic of his '86 rig where he had JCM800s that were intended for backup purposes.
    RD<br /><br />"Rock 'n' Roll is my second favourite thing in the whole world" - DLR (1983)<br /><br />"We don't go for perfection, we just go for spirit." - EVH (1981)

  5. #5
    Sinner's Swing! Rick S's Avatar
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    06.23.17 @ 09:49 PM
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    i thought those were jmps.
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  6. #6
    Romeo Delight
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    12.31.69 @ 04:00 PM
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    How could a JCM800 be the main amp behind Ed's tone from 1981-1990 when he was still using the old Plexi during that period (hotrodded or not), tone changed drastically for "5150" and sounded more processed than anything else, and was also using Soldanos in the later half of the 80's?

  7. #7
    Emperor of VHLinks.com Brett's Avatar
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    12.10.17 @ 09:35 PM
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    Maybe he used them live, but I am sorry, you don't get that warm sound that he had on those early VH records from a JCM 800. Not without some serious, serious modding.
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  8. #8
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    12.31.69 @ 04:00 PM
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    The picture is of Ed's 1986 rig. I'm no Marshall historian, so I cannot tell you if they are Plexi heads. The ones to the left are very likely Plexis just by their age appearance. The ones to the right each have four inputs so I assume these heads do not have pre-amp volume controls. My guess is that they are early to mid 70's models beofre the pre-amp was introduced. Either way, that's a shitload of volume Mr. Ed was cranking out.
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  9. #9
    Sinner's Swing! Rick S's Avatar
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    06.23.17 @ 09:49 PM
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    thoselook like jmps maybe markI s or mark II s.
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  10. #10
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    12.09.17 @ 08:19 PM
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    I haven't messed with an 800 in probably more than 5 years.

    Is there a switch on the back of the head version that allows you to disengage the diode(basically it's a solid state transistor)clipping???

    Because if you CAN, then there's no reason that the 800s wouldn't make reliable, if not "standard" sounding, backups.

    If you can't disengage that additional solid state clipping, then you're going to wind up sounding like AC/DC or Guns n' Roses, with that upper midrange "sizzle" that although Marshall-y, is the EXACT ingredient Eddie DOESN'T want in his sound, whether it be with the Marshall-y era, or the Peavey era.

    Using it on stage is one thing, using it to record is another.

    At least that's my 2 cents.

    I love the 800, by the way, and I think Ed would sound fine through it. But it's not his old album sound......no way.

    I'm not even 100% confident that the 800 always came with EL34s, in fact, I thought I read that for a while, they came with whatever the equivalent of the 6L6 is, just like the JCM 900s.

    Getting carried away now......
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  11. #11
    On Fire
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    12.31.69 @ 04:00 PM
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    Originally posted by Majestic:
    I haven't messed with an 800 in probably more than 5 years.

    Is there a switch on the back of the head version that allows you to disengage the diode(basically it's a solid state transistor)clipping???

    Because if you CAN, then there's no reason that the 800s wouldn't make reliable, if not "standard" sounding, backups.

    If you can't disengage that additional solid state clipping, then you're going to wind up sounding like AC/DC or Guns n' Roses, with that upper midrange "sizzle" that although Marshall-y, is the EXACT ingredient Eddie DOESN'T want in his sound, whether it be with the Marshall-y era, or the Peavey era.

    Using it on stage is one thing, using it to record is another.

    At least that's my 2 cents.

    I love the 800, by the way, and I think Ed would sound fine through it. But it's not his old album sound......no way.

    I'm not even 100% confident that the 800 always came with EL34s, in fact, I thought I read that for a while, they came with whatever the equivalent of the 6L6 is, just like the JCM 900s.

    Getting carried away now......
    [img]graemlins/drunk.gif[/img]
    The JCM800 2203 and 2204 single channel amps don't have diode clipping in the preamp. The channel switching 2205 and 2210 are the models with diode clipping in the preamp and it is not easily removed. In my experience the 2204-03 models were way more consistant sounding than the 2210-05 models. I've come across some of the channel switching models that were great sounding, but I've also come across a few turds.

    The 800 2203-2204 models are also a dream for doing simple but effective mods. The channel switching models are a little more complicated to mod.

    I'm sure Ed used an 800 at one point or another, but not enough for Musicians Friend to put that it was the key to his "brown sound". That's a bit of a stretch.

  12. #12
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    09.08.06 @ 11:08 PM
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    I agree that ed DID use the 800, but its certainly not the key to his sound, although he probably "still sounded like ed" while playing through it here's a pic:

  13. #13
    XTC man! homeunit's Avatar
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    09.05.15 @ 12:20 PM
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    I had thought that Ed used 800s on the Balance tour. I don't remember if I heard or read it. Another poster said that the 800s on the balance tour were Samís, so who knows.

    I have a 70s JMP that's been modded to have an extra gain stage, active resonance control, and clean channel. With that thing I can get the tone of a classic Marshall and with the extra gain stage and resonance I can dial up an Eddie (live) tone pretty easily, as well as a pretty kick ass heavy tone.

    I would suspect that whatever Marshall Ed uses is modded to do whatever he wants, and I would think that if I can get my JMP to VH and much heavier, anything (800/jmp/plexi) that Ed uses is not stock.

    The cool think about 800s is that they are apparently quite easy to do a gain mod on them, and they sound more natural to me than the 5150s.
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  14. #14
    Romeo Delight
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    12.31.69 @ 04:00 PM
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    Thanks guys for your input! I have seen those pics before. Looks like there are 4 outputs on those amps so that gives a good idea what they are. Don't know what MF is talking about! A modded Marshall Superlead Plexi 66-67 seems to be the most popular answer to VH early tone, specially recording first album. I tend to think depending on how picky one is that there are a lot of marshall amps that give you a good VH tone if you just sit there and play all his stuff. If you ever play an expensive Soldano superlead like Ed's you will sound like his FUCK sound because those things basically produce one type of sound. But its killer!!!!!
    "When I found the guitar, I refused to take lessons. This was my <br />real emotional release, and I didn't want to be taught how to <br />approach the instrument." Eddie Van Halen<br /><br />"While I believe our band will be most triumphant, the truth is Wyld Stallions will never be a super band until we get Eddie Van Halen on guitar." Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure

  15. #15
    Eruption
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    12.31.69 @ 04:00 PM
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    That second pic is what I was refering to when I said I saw his rig with 800s in it. I do concede that the amps in the first pic are definately not JCM800s. They look like JMPs to me. Who knows what he used - I don't think he will ever let us know the truth.

    One small thing that has always puzzled me though...

    Why would Ed go from using non-master volume Marshalls to a master volume fuzz machine like the 5150??? Its always seemed like an odd transition to me. Why wouldn't he have gotten Peavey to build him something more along the "British" line. I mean his tone was "Marshall, EL34, British tone" and he swapped to "Peavey, 6L6, American tone". Makes you wonder is maybe he used something different all along!? He just seems so secretive about his tone.
    RD<br /><br />"Rock 'n' Roll is my second favourite thing in the whole world" - DLR (1983)<br /><br />"We don't go for perfection, we just go for spirit." - EVH (1981)

 

 

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