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  1. #1
    Little Dreamer
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    Default Advice about amp volume at home

    Hi all --

    I purchased a 5150 combo a few years ago and now that I've got kids running around I can't play as loud as I used to. Looking for some alternatives...should I get a THD Hotplate or a Marshall PowerBrake to get decent tone at bedroom level, or would I be better off buying an entirely separate practice amp like the Line 6 Spider, Peavey Rage, or the little Marshall?

    Any thoughts from guitar players out there?

    Cheers

  2. #2
    Banned! againstthewind's Avatar
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    http://www.vhlinks.com/vbforums/showthread.php?t=28789

    Check this thread out..might help.

  3. #3
    Little Dreamer
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    Thanks so much for the help!

  4. #4
    Eruption
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    An attenuator basically serves the same purpose as a master volume tube amp, where you can jack up the channel volume, then use the master volume to bring the overall level back down, but at bedroom levels your tone is going to suck. Those things are really only meant to bring the volume down a little, too much and it's like, "what's the point in playing a tube amp at all?", you know what I mean? You're in the same situation as me, you're wanting a cranked tube amp tone, but at low volume, and there's really no way to get that from a tube amp. You'll probably need to find a good solid state, but I have yet to play one I like, and Line 6 sucks if you ask me.

  5. #5
    Atomic Punk
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    Fender Champ or that new digital Fender would be the way to go. I think you can pick up a Champ for under $120. It's a great little amp, I have one and love it because it's great at low volumes so I can play it at work. If I need to I can use it in a band practice situation too, just put it on a stool so it's about waist high.
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  6. #6
    Banned! againstthewind's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Axxman300
    Fender Champ or that new digital Fender would be the way to go. I think you can pick up a Champ for under $120. It's a great little amp, I have one and love it because it's great at low volumes so I can play it at work. If I need to I can use it in a band practice situation too, just put it on a stool so it's about waist high.

    I think the new digital Fender he is refering to is the GDEC...awesome. Get it..you will not regret it. Check review on this forum.
    Last edited by againstthewind; 01.08.06 at 05:38 PM.

  7. #7
    Good Enough nobozos's Avatar
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    Tell you what, my wife got me a Line 6 Guitar Port for Christmas, and this little thing is quite cool. It's a breeze to set up, and you can mix and match heads to cabinets, mic placement, choose between many different effects, and the coolest thing about it is you can put in a cd of a song you want to learn and play it at half speed without changing the pitch. For practicing at home, it's really the way to go.
    "Having an opinion that people disagree with doesn't make you a Douche, arguing with the people who disagree with your opinion and calling them stupid does!" -Me.

  8. #8
    Romeo Delight
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    When my kids were very little, I got one of those Marshall amps that run on 1 9 volt battery. They are 1 watt. I was dinking with it in one of the back bedrooms and my wife walks by and says "Can you turn that thing down?"

  9. #9
    Unchained
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    Quote Originally Posted by nobozos
    Tell you what, my wife got me a Line 6 Guitar Port for Christmas, and this little thing is quite cool. It's a breeze to set up, and you can mix and match heads to cabinets, mic placement, choose between many different effects, and the coolest thing about it is you can put in a cd of a song you want to learn and play it at half speed without changing the pitch. For practicing at home, it's really the way to go.
    I love my Guitar Port, it's almost like guitar karaoke. They have several Van Halen tracks you can download with the guitar part taken out.

  10. #10
    Eruption DaleT's Avatar
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    That is just so funny, sad and true, but funny! What's worse, if you adapt to a setup where you are playing thru a set of headphones, you'll still get the same reaction!
    Quote Originally Posted by JWR
    When my kids were very little, I got one of those Marshall amps that run on 1 9 volt battery. They are 1 watt. I was dinking with it in one of the back bedrooms and my wife walks by and says "Can you turn that thing down?"

  11. #11
    Romeo Delight KA$H's Avatar
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    Try the Vox Valvetronix. I have the 30 watt model. You can crank the volume and master volume but lower the output by using a knob on the back (same concept as a variac). Tube amp with digital modeling capabilities.

  12. #12
    Good Enough
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    Let me give you my experience here, since I only play at low volumes and have struggled with this issue for a number of years.

    There are two things I do that work really well for me.

    1. I own a 5150 head and run it into a Weber Mass 100. I take a signal off the Weber and run it into a solid state 30 watt Marshall combo. This way I can get a cranked 5150 tone at very low volumes. The tone stack on the Weber works great here, and in combination with the tone controls on the solid state Marshall, I have a lot of tweakability. I run a Pod xt in the loop of the 5150 just for some reverb and delay. I run an MXR Phase 90 in front of the 5150. This really does work good, and I'm very happy with my results here.

    2. At times I run the Pod xt through the effects return of the 5150, and out into my 4 x 12, so I'm only using the 5150 as a power amp. The 5150 model on the Pod is actually really good, and I can get it sounding pretty much the same as my real 5150. There are a couple of other amp models I use from the Pod which really suit my playing. Again, this is all low volume stuff. The output on the Pod is less than 1 here. I get really good results this way too, but it has taken a lot of tweaking with the Pod to get to this point.

    I'm very happy with both these setups. The second setup gives me more flexibility. Pods can sound like crap, and I almost returned mine a while ago. But they can also be made to sound real good too, and can get real close to a tube amp, especially at the volume levels you are after. Hope this helps.

 

 

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