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Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Rick Lewis, Mar 3, 2019.
Y’all got some seriously gorgeous pairings!
Les, of course you're right about that cab. But, we all know that isn't why Sergio wants one. It's all about accessorizing!
Yeah, my cabinet only hurts my eyes.
Actually she was made for me, but I got sidetracked somewhere along the way.
If it was only about the magic being in us, we’d all be on a “The Magic’s In Us” forum instead of a gear forum!
Thank god I don’t have magic in me, music was a difficult enough occupation.
Is that anything like these two?
Hey, music’s a delightful occupation if you want to work hard at something, but don’t enjoy money.
I’m very good at turning dollars into gear, which makes me a certain type of magician, right?
I figure it’s a better outcome for dollars than being a gourmet, considering what their investment in food turns into.
I can only imagine being a magician would be just as tough. Like, I wonder how much a giggling musician makes, and what an average kit costs...
rabbits and doves seem like they’d be pretty expensive to buy and maintain, not to mention smelly and dirty. And they have to travel with those things too, so do they live in the van?
Pretty much every guitar I own sounds great through this Bad Cat Cub IVR. Here, it's pictured with my new Vela.
What I love about this amp is that, even though it is one channel, there are switchable input tubes (12AX7 or EF86) and a switchable EQ boost. I can cover a lot of ground with this amp. It won't do metal (the Hot Cat 30 will, though!), but it gets pretty saturated.
You guy's setups are far more fancy than mine, but for me, all I need to get the tone I want are either of my 22s and that Hot Rod DeVille......and I need that pedal board too as the overdrive on a Hot Rod amp leaves a bit to be desired. But I use it for the cleans and as a pedal platform anyway.
Ok I'll play along just because I'm trying to work on being less of a smartass
I have two $5k guitars and one $800 amp, an Orange Rocker 15. Stock photos online, they all look the same. At the time I'd just bought a Gibson LP Standard and that was about all I had to spend on an amp. Actually not even that much, I guilted GC into giving me a discount on a brand new one they ordered in because they threw the box away.
Since then I've had the opportunity to try a few other small tube amps but I really love that little Orange. I had a chance to trade it even up for a Marshall Mini Silver Jubilee but I just couldn't do it. The clean channel on the Rocker 15 is pristine. The dirty channel is pretty darn good but not as good as pushing the clean channel to breakup.
My pedalboard actually cost more than my amp but between the two I can get pretty much any sound I want. I'm not chasing a particular tone, I just want it to sound good. Honestly, I wouldn't know what tone to chase. I like too many different types of music and musicians.
I have a couple of electric guitars that are nicer than anything I ever thought I'd own and an amp that makes them both sound great. I'm already over geared as a hobby player in my eyes, now I'm looking for over talented.
TLDR... I'm both jealous of yours and very happy with mine
Your experience sounds a lot like mine with my Budda SD-18.
I was dead set on getting a Mesa Boogie Mark IV that day (and did eventually get one a few years later). My Adrenalinn III has a Mark IV sim that sounded great. So off to the local pusher, sit down with the Mark IV, and man, did I wrestle with it. My guy came over after about 20-25 minutes and said, "What do you think?" I said I was struggling to find what I was looking for with it, and he said, "Yeah, I kind of got that impression. Can I show you something?" Walk back to another section of the floor, and he plugged into the Budda. He said it didn't have as many features as the Mark IV, maybe wasn't as versatile, but said it was hard not to get a good sound out of it. He demoed it for me for about five minutes. I never plugged into it. Didn't have to at that point. Plus it was about $400 cheaper.
Fast-forward, and I have yet to find a guitar that doesn't sound good through that amp. Don't get me wrong - I love my Archon and MT-15, and they're usually my first choice for recording and playing. But I know I can plug into the Budda and something good is going to come out, and that's usually the amp I go to when I want a spanky clean tone that I normally associate w/Fender amps.
I do have a Mark IV, and I still struggle with it, but one thing that's telling to me is that I have a couple guitars that I've never gotten to work w/that amp.
Oh, and that "less of a smartass comment"? Can't relate to it at all.
You raise an interesting point - the amp/guitar match (what works and why, what doesn’t and why) is so worth further discussion!
I had a Mk V that I really dug, though each channel was somewhat guitar-specific, which makes sense with each channel being voiced quite differently, and each guitar I own doing its own thing, too. I’m not saying this is a bad thing, especially if one has more than one guitar, it’s just what it is.
We’re all different.
I keep rediscovering that the simpler the amp, the more guitars it works with, and I put that down to my preferences; I want to hear the damn guitar, and not just amplifier grind. Not everyone feels this way, and I’m not suggesting they should, of course.
But I’ll observe for the moment that Alan’s Budda is simpler, needing only three preamp tubes to handle its business, and the Mark needs 5 to deal with all its gain staging.
Early on, I had simple, single channel amps that sounded great no matter what guitar I was playing, like my blackface Bassman. My current single channel PRS amps sound great no matter which guitar goes through them. Everything just works.
I also have a Mesa Lone Star, a more feature-laden two channel amp. One of its capabilities is that one can switch gain stages out of the circuit. Lo and behold, the more gain stages I switch out, the more guitars I find the amp works with. Go figure!
The main reason I don’t play Two-Rock these days is that I thought their cascading gains were absolutely wonderful with single coil pickups, but for me worked less well with humbuckers - given how my tone was evolving (and the evolution of one’s desired tone is a whole ‘nother topic!). Things just got a bit thick with the humbuckers. Makes sense when you consider that adding gain stages naturally adds thickness, and most humbuckers have more output gain than single coils, and therefore drive an amp to more thickness to begin with.
When I had the TRs, I mostly used them with my Soapbar PRSes, a CU22 Soapy and McCarty Soapy, or my 408, with its clever coil splits and less flubby sound. Yet at the same time, my simpler Bad Cat Hot Cat 30 was more guitar-agnostic.
Can conclusions be drawn from these experiences? Hell if I know, but these days I’m fonder of simpler amps. I wonder if a player like Bonamassa switched to Tweed Bassmans because he could get closer to the inherent woody tone of his guitars (not that I have a clue why other folks do what they do)?
I apologize for the derailment!
OK, so here’s another magical combination, though this one’s fairly obvious; the McCarty Singlecut through the HXDA (a single-channel Plexi style amp) is great for the tones we’ve all heard on records so many times, but fergodsakes it works so well!
The HXDA is the black amp on the right.
Well...... ......... because I just sold my Recto and have no amp head at this time, the only magic combo I have is my fingers and a PRS.
(my old CU22 w/Dragon II's........ miss her, sniff sniff)
.......... but there are sooooo many other magical combinations that are just as shred-o-listic as a private stock and an Archon.
.......... you can tell I haven't had lunch yet.
I found that as I got deeper into the Helix, my rig needs go simpler. Go figure. It is SOOO easy to build an amazing sounding, straight up rig in the Helix. WHen it came time to grab a tube amp again, it was all about Class A, Vox-type circuit mixed with a touch of Marshall. I needed great reverb and tremolo, so I grabbed a Stymron Flint. The Bad Cat Cub IV 15R is exactly what the doctor ordered - loud, semi-aggressive , and touch responsive. Each guitar's character shined through!!
Those Bad Cat Cubs are terrific amps - beautiful Class A chime, just the right design for so many things. I had something similar that I liked very much (and gave to my son for one of his projects) - a Roccaforte Rockie 30, that was a Class A 30 Watt cross between Vox and Marshall 18. I dug it. But I felt it was more important that he have a great amp when he was getting started in LA.
He’d have succeeded without the amp, but it never hurts to have good gear!
I’m so glad you feel that way, and I’ve got a terrific idea for a trade: I’ll pick up the tab those exact three dishes/beverages from a good restaurant, and you send me your PRSes,
What could be simpler or more fair?