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Thread: Tube Amp Advice

  1. #1
    Top Of The World FatStrat85's Avatar
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    09.16.13 @ 02:25 PM
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    Tube Amp Advice

    I'm buying a new amp hopefully sometime in the next few months. I am upgrading from a 100W Crate DX-212 Digital Modeling Amp. I have been playing for years and never really thought about my tone in terms of amps until now. I play through a Les Paul. I am buying a tube amp. That is my one rule this time, I want 100% tube. I have researched my balls off these last couple of weeks. Basically my Crate isn't loud enough and the louder I put it, the worst it sounds. This is typical for a solid state amp. I have a band and gig regularly in medium size venues. I want something around the range of 50-100 Watts. That is as loud as I or almost anyone will ever need I think. I also need something fairly versatile. I need a decent clean sound and a great lead gain sound (Van Halen, G'n'R, Eric Johnson, etc...) I want a good brown sound I guess with plenty of gain and headroom. I don't use too much gain but I'd rather have too much than too little. The only effect I need is reverb. I've been looking at mostly combos because they're easier to move but I understand the advantages of a half stack. I don't really need a huge chuga chuga bassy rhythm sound. I want something I can get for under $1000 used. I started out looking at the Marshall TSL-122 but I know it has some serious reliablility issues. I have looked at tons of amps since. I use the harmony central web page reviews to help me get a good feel for the amps. Here are the amps I've researched.

    Marshall TSL-122
    Mesa Rect-O-Verb (II) Combo
    Hughes & Kettner Duotone Combo
    Carvin MTS 3212
    Peavey Classic 50-212BT
    Mesa Mark IV Combo
    Rivera KR-55 Knucklead
    Rivera Fandango 55-212

    I would really appreciate any advice and comments on these amps or suggestions on others. Am I missing any great amps on my list? I looked at Bogner, Orange, and a couple other high end brands but they seem to be too expensive (again, looking for around $800 used). Am I making a mistake by going for another combo? Can I get a half stack for under $1000? If I get one of these should I replace the tubes with groove tubes? Should I get EL34's or something? Sorry for the long post. Thanks.
    Last edited by FatStrat85; 05.17.05 at 11:11 AM.

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    02.26.17 @ 05:10 PM
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    you can probably get a splawn quick rod used for $1200 or so...the extra money is definitely worth it...bet tube amp out there...check it out www.splawnguitars.com
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  3. #3
    Eruption mk5's Avatar
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    04.30.16 @ 03:52 PM
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    FatStrat85,

    The Quick Rod will get you a brown sound w/ a clean channel. I myself have a Pro Mod and it's a great amp. Very loud.

    In addition to that, and amongst the flurry of replies you are likely to get,
    here's my opinion on your list:

    Marshall TSL-122: Don't waste the cash. For that price, get a used older Super Lead or a JCM800.

    Mesa Rect-O-Verb (II) Combo: Not a bad amp. Clean channel could be better.

    Hughes & Kettner Duotone Combo: Never played it.

    Carvin MTS 3212: Never Played it. Legacy was decent though. Had a
    pristine clean channel.

    Peavey Classic 50-212BT: Great sounding amp. Great bang for the buck. Make sure it has enough gain on tap for you.

    Mesa Mark IV Combo: I owned a head. Does everything good but not great.

    Rivera KR-55 Knucklead: Never played
    Rivera Fandango 55-212: Never played

    My recommendations:

    Fender Prosonic (not made anymore, but a GREAT amp with an excellent clean and nice distortion). Can be picked up on eBay if you like the sound for
    under $700 (Retailed for $1500 new).

    Splawn--Brown-in-a-box. A little more than you want to spend though.

    Soldano Hot Rod 50+

    Don't worry about changing to Groove Tubes. 2x12 tube combos can be HEAVY. But a head and cabinet = two trips. Advantages to both. Just pro/con what's best for your application.

    Whatever you do, it would probably be best to try it before you buy it.
    Last edited by mk5; 05.17.05 at 12:16 PM.
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    08.21.17 @ 12:12 PM
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    Hey!

    I own a Peavey Classic 50 212 amp. I play a 60's Strat, Wolfgang and Les Paul through it.

    It kicks ass!

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    ...Judas Priest only has one gay guy in the band.

  5. #5
    Top Of The World FatStrat85's Avatar
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    09.16.13 @ 02:25 PM
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    Thanks a lot guys! That is exactly the kind of stuff I was looking for.

    H*bunter, how much gain can you get with your peavey classic? Can you get enough with the amp or do you use a pedal? I don't want to use a pedal and I need fairly high gain. I need to be able to pull off early VH tones, basically 80's levels of hard rock gain.

    P.S. If anyone has any comments on Rivera, I'd really appreciate it. I've been looking at 3 models now. The Knuckle Head, Fandango, and Quiana. Anyone have input on these?

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    Pope Of Greenwich Village SuckaInA3Piece's Avatar
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    08.28.17 @ 03:27 PM
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    I'd like to hear about the Rivera's as well. From what I've read, that Knucklehead kicks ass!

    I run a 5150 II with a 2x12 cab, and I say in all I spent about 700 bucks for both. You might also want to check out a Peavey JSX head, but those go for about 900 and up. They sound killer though, and have all the gain a growin boy needs.
    "It's always a Catch-22 situation. They hate you if you're the same, and they hate you if you're different."
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