Jmod vs. Two Rock

Discussion in 'Amplifiers' started by PeterK, Aug 31, 2018.

  1. LSchefman

    LSchefman Hears Tones

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    Yeah, I was experimenting a little, and wondered which I’d like better as a PI tube, so I put a JJ - 803s (?) in. It was a bit gainier than the NOS Brimar. Not much. Could’ve been that Brimar has a little lower output.

    On the HXDA, it’s a clone of the 60s Plexi Superbass that Duane Allman used for Live At The Fillmore (The Allman Brothers located the actual amp, and lent it to PRS, as they endorsed PRS amps). It progressively switches into a Hendrix style Plexi cloned from a 60s Superlead owned by Eric Johnson. Paul Smith said there were only a few parts differences, so the three HX/DA switches switch those parts into or out of the circuit.

    When I got the amp, the first thing I did was set the switches to DA and there it was - the tone on Live At The Fillmore, big as life, in MY room! I was totally blown away! It’s one of my all-time benchmark tones. Of course, it does more than that, as I later learned.

    As much as I loved my TRs - and they were fabulous amps that came equipped with NOS tubes Bill tested and installed - the HXDA suited my style of play a little more; was perfect for a big chunk of what I do.

    So happy as I was, I also dug the DG sound, and got that amp to have something different on tap for a more American vintage tone. Now I use the DG as much as the HXDA. I’ve had these amps since 2014, longest term amps I’ve had in 15 years, and still get all happy inside when I use them!

    I got the Lone Star because my son tours with one. At first I wasn’t happy with it, and mainly he plugged into it when he visited, but as I mentioned earlier, NOS tubes and some power tube damper rings improved it a lot (the power tubes rattled like crazy being so close to the speakers in a 100 Watt combo; I’ll never do another combo, but these weird tube damping rings were a last resort that one hundred percent just worked!).

    As an aside, I did one other looney thing, and tried the Essential Sound Music Cords (these are big diameter power cords) with the DG and Lone Star (the HXDA has a captive power cord).

    I know, it’s impossible snake oil that isn’t supposed to matter, but turned out that it mattered, so now in addition to the amps, everything in my studio that has an IEC power cord has one - main balanced studio power supply, powered monitors, preamps, converters, tube mic power supplies, synths, etc. - and the sound is noticeably better, especially the monitoring system where the imaging and bass accuracy is somehow improved. I’d tested expensive power cords in the past that were emperor’s new clothes items. This one worked, what can I say, except that I know it’s an eye-roller, but there it is.
     
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  2. sergiodeblanc

    sergiodeblanc Too Funky

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    I have a fancier power cable with my DG30 too. I’m not sure if it matters, but all I know is that amp slays, so I’m not changing a thing.
     
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  3. LSchefman

    LSchefman Hears Tones

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    I actually tried swapping out other cables after I tried this thing, and it clearly sounded best with the fancy one. So...if it ain’t broke... ;)

    Out of sheer self-doubt and paranoia, when my son came in last year, we both sat down and listened to my powered monitors with and without these ESP cords, and he thought it was pretty obvious that they sounded better, too. I was relieved, since he’s a skeptic, and has mixed some major label stuff.
     
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  4. bodia

    bodia Authorities said.....best leave it.....unsolved

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    If the shoe fits.........
     
  5. LSchefman

    LSchefman Hears Tones

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    Speaking of doctors, I need one.

    I’ve got a bad case of rhythm and blues.
     
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  6. Leif Robertson

    Leif Robertson New Member

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    No wonder so many people like the HXDA, Duanne Allman Live at Filmore to Hendrix plexi Superlead with the flip of a switch! This may sound like a bizarre question and maybe a stupid one (I'm assuming the answer is no) but can that switch be changed from the amps foot pedal? I know you might think why would you want to do that butI like both of those tones.

    Yeah Eric Johnson plays everything from Marshal to even two Fender Twins to just about everything including Dumble and I think now he's actually into Kemper (although maybe not live). No matter what he plays through, he's still EJ. Kemper is an odd topic for me. I have so many doubts but a lot of tube guys say no your fine and it does seem to be like a great studio investment tool at least to have all at your fingertips and backed up but Im such a purist I keep saying not yet. That being said I probably will get one at some point but no rush. I dunno. Anyway...the HX/DAsounds like another great amp! I can't afford to buy it right now till I pay off the DG30 and the matching cab I just ordered (fyi) but maybe in a few months or a year I may have an impulse. That being said Im perfectly happy with what I have...It truly is nice to have options!!!

    This does at first sound a bit like snake oil when I first was reading it as to how that could possibly make any kind of difference, but you know everything in the long run even down to my magami guitar cables (which is all I use now) probably makes a difference....I was convinced magami cables are the best but who knows, Ive been using just them for 15 years now. I swear they are warmer but maybe Im over analyzing or its in my head.

    Anyway, so in theory IECs are the way to go not just for the rig but all around... Ok. Ill switch em. Not like its gonna cost an arm an a leg or anything lol. Why not...you sold me!

    I think I have pretty decent studio set up and similar I think anyway. I mean yeah Im using the focusrite still, but I have both old NS10s (old), and newer powered yamaha monitors I switch between (depending on my mood), preamps, synths (88 key weighted Yamaha and Arturia midi controller on the top usually I can do anything with just those two (I like key lab software almost as much as NI), Roland KVS 25 drum kit hooked up to Superior Drummer for writing purposes mostly, preamps, converters etc...I have this Bose "3 Way" basic sound system for final play back (not that that means anything)..although sometimes Ill even run to my car to check things out. I know that sounds crazy but hey we all have our idiosyncrasies. I don't know why I do it because Im still learning mix techniques or maybe I'm always learning new techniques (I have to admit Ive come a long way the last 2 months) but I guess I care about tone perfection as you do. So ok, eye roller or not...Ill order IEC for everything, not like its gonna kill me or anything using specific power cords for all. At least your consistent!

    I think you may have told me before (or at least in a nutshell), what exactly do you use mic wise with your PRS amps if you feel like sharing more than you did.... Im a tad curious but you don't have too. I do think I have what works for me but I'm always curious what others are into. I know you do the same thing in principle with ambience condenser in the back but Im just curious if you feel like sharing more by all means or anyone else here Id love to hear how you mic your rigs! Right now I simply use a e609 Dynamic up close right to the grille, but with my U47 Condenser 3 feet away give or take. I test initially using Seinnhouser 380 HD headphones (which I have several of)..Then take them off and back on just to check and then I leave it. I don't think I could capture a cab any better but who knows whats best. I also use the U47 for a lot of other applications so Im wondering if I could use something less expensive that still gets the job done as well so I don't have to keep moving it around. I almost want to get another one (which is insanely stupid) or maybe try something else for the ambience room sound thats maybe not as expensive but gets the job done. Like I said Im a purist tone freak so Ill admit I spend a lot of time messing around till I find what works for me....Then I stick with that and move on.
     
    #46 Leif Robertson, Sep 23, 2018
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2018
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  7. LSchefman

    LSchefman Hears Tones

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    There are three switches for going from DA to HX. It’s progressive, in three different parts of the circuit, so you can switch in various combinations for different tones. It’s not footswitchable. Then again, the best thing about the amp is how it can be controlled from the guitar, which it’s incredibly good at, old-school style.

    Mics...

    I use an Audix i5 on the HXDA, a Sennheiser 935 on the DG30, and a 57 or i5 on the Lonestar.

    After a lot of trying, I picked what I think compliments the tone of each amp, but other mics work, too. I just like these choices lately.

    All three of the dynamic mics are set up on stands in front of all three amps all the time, so everything’s ready to go without a lot of fuss, except I usually use either a condenser or ribbon mic as a room mic, and that varies depending on what I want to hear. It’s best not to leave a ribbon or condenser set up all the time, anyway, so I don’t.

    Is your U47 vintage or one of Neumann’s reissues? Both are great. You might consider a Royer 121 or 122, or the Rode ribbon, etc., as room mics, and there are times I’ll use the ribbons in about 2-3 feet away as you’re doing with your 47. Sometimes I’ll use ‘em with the dynamics, sometimes not.

    Incidentally, I don’t have a ‘best’ mic choice for any vocal or instrument; it’s just a matter of what I’m trying to do, hear, and what’ll fit in the mix.

    I’m not a fan of the Kemper for recording, but I’d use one live just because i can actually carry it. On the other hand, I haven’t played out in years, so...
     
    #47 LSchefman, Sep 23, 2018
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2018
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  8. Leif Robertson

    Leif Robertson New Member

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    Excellent response.
    Its the reissue not true vintage although Id like to hear the differences. Maybe Ill try to track one down later in time.
    I do agree, its what people find what best works for them. I use small stands as well for both although Im sure I could drop the e609 down the side if I desired but I prefer stands. I rarely put the U47 back in its box but yes I suppose I probably should do that more often. It does get quite a bit of use.
     
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  9. Leif Robertson

    Leif Robertson New Member

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    I was just looking at the Royer. Thats a good one huh? Thanks Ill look into a nice ribbon mic. I like the 47 for so many things.. I think Id be ok using it for other purposes and then put it away. Then try a nice ribbon 3 feet away as a replacement or alternative.

    I don't blame you for feeling that way.. Yeah the live idea is nice not having to carry your gear around but I hear different things about how to use it live. It seems if you did get one it would be best to not get the powered 600 watts and get a powered speaker to run it or go direct if that sounds any good that way. This is what I am getting from most people. It peeks my interest but mainly out of curiosity. I probably would get one and end up not like it is what Im assuming.
     
    #49 Leif Robertson, Sep 23, 2018
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2018
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  10. LSchefman

    LSchefman Hears Tones

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    I worry about airborne contaminants building up on a condenser’s capsule, and humidity issues, etc. Klaus Heyne, the famous German mic builder and manufacturer recommends putting a drying packet (of the type most mics come with) inside a plastic bag with the mic, with the packet near the capsule, rolling up the mic in the bag tightly, and using a rubber band to seal it off.

    That may be a little extreme. I do, however, keep them in their plastic bags and hard cases, with the dehumidifier packet. When I do leave a condenser or ribbon out for a while, I cover it with a ziplock bag. Ribbons, of course, can be blown out by a wind gust from a door being opened, etc.

    But as I said, I’m fussy, and my mics would certainly outlive me even if I didn’t do that.
     
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  11. LSchefman

    LSchefman Hears Tones

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    I actually like the Rode NTR more than the Royer. I know, that’s heresy. They’re both great, but the NTR actually has a much less dark high end, and the bottom is as good. The only drawback is that it’s very heavy, due to a large transformer, but it’s phantom powered, it sounds truly great, etc. I use a Latch Lake stand with it, and there’s no problem with drooping. The Royer is light, and so it’s easier to use with a typical mic stand.

    Your U47 is a classic workhorse mic. Great mic.
     
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  12. BWV548

    BWV548 Custom Title

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    You two should drop some acid and jam! Don’t worry about that strychnine claim. It’s been shown to be unequivocally wrong.
     
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  13. LSchefman

    LSchefman Hears Tones

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    I’m in. You’re bringing the acid, right?
     
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  14. BWV548

    BWV548 Custom Title

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    [​IMG]
     
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  15. Leif Robertson

    Leif Robertson New Member

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    Ill look into both of them.
     
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  16. PeterK

    PeterK New Member

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    so do i get the two rocc or nah
     
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  17. Leif Robertson

    Leif Robertson New Member

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    Do you mind me asking you a question just to clarify your initial post?
    Which Dumble gain type are you seeking or not really concerned about gain? I mean that draws a major factor I think.
    The SSS (Steel String Singer i.e. Vaughn or EJ) or the classic "WOMAN" ODS (Overdrive Supreme or Special?) (Robin Ford to Larry Carlton, Clapton etc). Im assuming you meant by clean Fender on steroids therefore you meant SSS by "Fender on steroids" type but not 100 percent certain because you can still have Fender clean tone with either gain type. I mean if gain is any kind of factor here Id like to know because I'd probably maybe also turn you on to a couple other amps (by glassworks and by Fuchs etc).

    I really loved the TR CRS! It was sweet in both departments. Maybe the JMOD does have what your looking for though and it has some features that the TR doesn't and is or maybe a bit more versatile and maybe more Fenderish Im not positive and I own a lot of Fenders. lol.

    If I had to choose Id go with the TR CRS and also remember this is all so very subjective. Since hey you are asking on the actual PRS forum.... maybe you can't make up your mind and you prefer the JMOD?. If you want a PRS amp and just need convincing then yeah..you've come to the right place...you can never go wrong with PRS amps and just get the JMOD because it is a great amp!!!! With nice clean tones. Which one lacked what from your needs? I mean does drive matter? Does depreciation matter? Are you buying new or used? There are a lot of factors you may or may not care about, that no one but you can tell us to truly help you make up your own mind. lol :)

    I loved the JMOD clean and really love the features and versatility in regards to that amp. Really sweet. I loved even more the transitional clean to gain with the TR CRS. Just my opinion which is subjective.

    I think also you'd be hard pressed to get anyone even on this forum to say that Two Rock CRS is no good either or an amp to forget about. I also think the JMOD is going to drop a lot in price if that matters like investment wise or depreciation matters at all. Not that there is anything wrong with spending any amount of money on any amp that you love!. Some people see every gear purchase as an investment and others do not at all. I personally do not so much but Ive run into a lot of people that get upset when the price drops drastically on something newer they purchased.

    Ill tell you right now. If I could afford a real Dumble ODS at say 50k or even at 80k or more... head with cab etc...and still have all my other gear (that Ive accumulated over the years and not had to sell anything to get it)....Id buy it and not think twice about it or how much I may have over paid for it either! Id love to own one and maybe one day I will so please do not let my only non subjective comment about the JMOD deflect you from getting one! Id say get a good deal on it is all because the price is going to drop quite a bit or so Ive read more than once! They are still fantastic amps.

    So... unless you have more details Id say go with the amp you like best or give us more info like the music you play or something to go on beyond 100 watt Fender on steroids....If you liked the JMOD.. Get it! Both are great amps and you cannot go wrong with PRS. I could be wrong but I am pretty certain that no one is going to say anything bad about either of these amps that will sway you one way or the other...At least not without more info from you on you. . Off the top of my head, based on what you've indicated thus far on the past posts Ive read......Id say buy the JMOD!!!

    You want a PRS amp don't you?...Thats what Im guessing. PRS amps are excellent. I own two and played all but the HX/DA. I love PRS guitars and amps. A JMOD100 is yummy. Its also PRS so you know its made with care. :)

    Good Luck!
     
    #57 Leif Robertson, Sep 25, 2018
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2018
  18. TRGuy

    TRGuy New Member

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    I own a JMOD and I've owned many Two-Rocks. I'd highly recommend a Two-Rock over a JMOD for a number of reasons.

    1) Tone. Now, this is subjective, so don't get angry, but I prefer Two-Rocks tone. They have more clarity and much more presence and top end. Compared to the Two-Rock, the JMOD sounds and feels like it's got a blanket over the cab, even when the presence is maxed.
    2) Price. Even the top end Two-Rocks are cheaper than the JMOD. Two-Rock are releasing their SSS clone soon, the Silver Sterling Signature. I'd recommend waiting for this if you can, it's going to be phenomenal.
    3) Marketing. This has really annoyed me over the past 18 months. I get that you pay more for signature products, it's life, and those products normally bring a unique and interesting spec that you can't get on a normal product. However, I do feel that the PRS/JM relationship has been misleading and misinforming customers and I strongly oppose it. Since the JMOD was released in Spring 2017, Mayer has had his modded countless times, most recently he put a post on Instagram of Paul, Doug and JM modding his JMODS again. Heres a fun fact - they won't be modding it continuously because he's happy with the way it sounds. Which means one thing - PRS released a VERY expensive product that the artist wasn't happy with. This is a bit of a con if you ask me. I'm happy to pay a premium to get the tones my idols use, and with JM thats a high premium, but when the artists don't even use it, it's heartbreaking. Mayer always used a stock Two-Rock JM Sig - they made very very small tweaks to the circuit in 2012 (in preparation for the Crystal) but for the most part he was using a product that was the same as the one sold to customer. With PRS, you are not using the same gear JM is. PRS are very closed about the mods that are happening, and I wish they weren't. I'd love to know what JM's doing to improve his. Mayer has an NDA for all his tour staff around disclosure of his rig, so I wouldn't be surprised if the differences were bigger than we thought.

    You can see this in the Silver Sky as well. John Mayer: "The guitar you buy is exactly the same as the one I use!" Also John Mayer: "Check out this one of a kind proto I'm now using!"

    Now, don't get me wrong, the JMOD is a great amp. It's big, bold, immediate, percussive, remains clean throughout the volume sweep and takes pedals really well, I just oppose to signature products that are retailed when the signature artist doesn't think the tone is good enough yet. It's similar to the tennis community - Major tennis players don't use the racquets they endorse, often they use other brands painted to look like the ones they sell. Similar con.

    The whole thing does upset me because I really, really adore PRS as a company, and Im obviously a huge JM fan, so it's a bit cutting when the two do take advantage a little of enthusiasts such as myself. If I pay £7500 for a signature product, I want the one the artist is using, I want that c£2500 odd "name premium" to get me that tone.

    EDIT: Just as a bit of a disclaimer, this isn't a comment on reflection on PRS Guitars, but purely that specific company/artist relationship. PRS are my favourite guitar company by far, their service is beyond amazing, especially Shawn and the guys in the UK. My Tremonti is my favourite guitar of all time, an absolute beast, and I'm really gassing for a 594 and MT-15 asap! Just venting a frustration at feeling mislead and missold really.
     
    #58 TRGuy, Sep 25, 2018
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2018
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  19. LSchefman

    LSchefman Hears Tones

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    I’ll disagree here a little.

    I don’t see anything wrong with an artist saying, “Now I need a little more of this and a little less of that” as time goes on, to customize his amp. Few people have access to the factory mods an artist does, but it’s only the “con” you were talking about if the JMOD started out different from the one JM uses.

    In fact, that’s not the case. So there’s nothing at all misleading in PRS’ intent with this model. Mayer used the one on offer when it came out.

    Later, the artist changed his mind over some details. So what? And you’re 100% sure that Mayer never had TR tweak his signature TR? I know for a fact that TR would tweak amps for customers during that era.

    Now, if you’re the kind of Mayer fan who has to wear the exact John Mayer socks the dude’s wearing this second, I guess that’s cool, but because he changed his socks doesn’t mean you were misled when you were sold his original signature John Mayer socks.

    Second, speaking only for myself, I’d never buy an amp to sound like anyone else. A sig amp is great only if it’s a great amp. The artist name is (for me) irrelevant.

    As an aside, I had two Two-Rock CR Sig versions and maybe 4 iterations of the Onyx. I preferred the Onyx, but that’s just because it’s what I liked, I’m not saying the CRS isn’t as good an amp. It’s all personal preference.

    Any TR is astoundingly transparent on the clean channel, no doubt about it. But as with any amp, there are times you want something a little different.

    Look, I have no dog in this hunt; I don’t have a JMOD, and have no real reason to get one, though I lack a crystal ball to say for sure. But it’s a little cold to accuse PRS of somehow misleading anyone.
     
    #59 LSchefman, Sep 25, 2018
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2018
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  20. TRGuy

    TRGuy New Member

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    Completely appreciate everything you say. You're right.

    And it is a great amp, although it needs a lot of volume to sound its best... but thats what the OX is for.
     
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