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 Post subject: Looking for a tube amp under $500...........
PostPosted: Thu Feb 17, 2011 12:12 pm 
Mechagodzilla
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Joined: Tue Feb 24, 2004 3:37 pm
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Location: lancaster
Ok, I have a Sound City. Long story short, someone spilled a HUGE cup of beer in it. My other guitar player has it and is fixing it. I might just let him have it, because I got the amp through charity when my equipment was stolen a few years back. The guy has given me guitars, and has offered to pay for the amp to be fixed. He loves that amp more than any piece of equipment that he has. He is a vintage gearhead and builds his own tube amps, etc. So, I'm thinking of giving it to him if I can find another tube amp for under $500.

I like older tube amps. HATE almost all solid state amps. The newest amp I dig is the Marshall DSL401. I owned one (the stolen one) and loved it because I could get the old school ACDC sound, or get the killer skate thrash punk sound. For some reason, I only liked the 40 watt combo but not the other DSL amps. I LOVE Marshalls, but really cannot find one that is all tube for under $500. Fenders are pretty biting to me, although the Fender Bassman is pretty dreamy.

Any suggestions? I need something loud enough to play gigs without being miked in smallish clubs. I also like natural amp distortion, but I am willing to buy a pedal. I don't know much about distortion pedals though. I like those to be old school also. I prefer combos.

Thanks for the suggestions!

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 Post subject: Re: Looking for a tube amp under $500...........
PostPosted: Wed Feb 23, 2011 2:35 pm 
Mechagodzilla
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Still looking.........can go higher............

What the heck to everyone? Did everyone get banned or something? :boohoo:

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 Post subject: Re: Looking for a tube amp under $500...........
PostPosted: Wed Feb 23, 2011 3:14 pm 
Mothra

Joined: Mon Feb 04, 2008 11:40 am
Posts: 72
if you've already got a speaker cabinet and don't mind lugging it around, sovtek migs are supposed to get a decent marshall sound. an old traynor yba-1 is supposed to be very similar to a plexi circuit. either can be had on ebay for pretty cheap.

if you'd like to stick with a combo, people have lots of good things to say about the peavey classic 30 and classic 50.

the egnater tweaker might work well too. it comes in a combo or head. it's only 15 watts so you can really crank it up for natural distortion. might not be enough wattage for the stage though.

good luck!


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 Post subject: Re: Looking for a tube amp under $500...........
PostPosted: Wed Feb 23, 2011 5:18 pm 
Mechagodzilla
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Location: lancaster
tom of lindsay wrote:
if you've already got a speaker cabinet and don't mind lugging it around, sovtek migs are supposed to get a decent marshall sound. an old traynor yba-1 is supposed to be very similar to a plexi circuit. either can be had on ebay for pretty cheap.

if you'd like to stick with a combo, people have lots of good things to say about the peavey classic 30 and classic 50.

the egnater tweaker might work well too. it comes in a combo or head. it's only 15 watts so you can really crank it up for natural distortion. might not be enough wattage for the stage though.

good luck!


Thanks Tom! I've heard a lot of great things about the Peavy Classic series. I don't recall ever hearing anything negative regarding those amps. I would like to stick with a combo, but I saw one of those Sovteks on ebay a little bit ago. My other guitar player said that the Sovteks sound as good as Marshalls.

The Egnators are pretty cool. A friend of mine has one. It's a little "honkey" sounding for my taste. Then again, I never played through it and didn't adjust the settings to my liking. I need just a little more than 15 watts. Best amps I've ever owned were between 40 and 50 watts.

I'm definitely gonna check those Peavy Classics out since you are the 6th person to recommend checking them out. Right now, I play in an indie type band with a female singer (no not Red Dahlia lol), but I also play with a classic rock cover band. Lots of Zeppelin and stuff. I also sit in with my old death metal band from time to time. So if I can find a good pedal for the rough stuff, then the Peavy might just be for me. I just love the sound of tube amps. Thanks man!

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 Post subject: Re: Looking for a tube amp under $500...........
PostPosted: Wed Feb 23, 2011 10:01 pm 
Mechagodzilla
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Location: lancaster
Just purchased a Marshall JTM60 with a 15in celestion on Ebay. With shipping, it was $650. 60 watts of course. I know there have been some technical issues with these amps, but one of my good friends is an amp tech, and he suggested getting it. He said that the problems with these are the sound dropping out but it has something to do with poor wiring and something about an effect loops jack? Anywho, he's gonna tweak it for me and make sure every thing is fine and dandy.

The other problem is I never played through the amp. I have a friend who has one and he loves it and I like the sounds that he gets. I'm a physical type of guitar player, so reaction to touch is a must. I'm skeptical of Ebay, but hey, I just had to do it. I don't get my license back for another month and having a friend driving me all around gawd's creation would be a pain in the butt for all involved. Wish me luck!!!!

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 Post subject: Re: Looking for a tube amp under $500...........
PostPosted: Sun Mar 06, 2011 4:47 pm 
Mechagodzilla
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Yay. Got my amp on Friday. Yay. Had a show that night. Took the amp but had a back up. Yay. My new amps sound kept dropping out. Yay. Thanks to the dude that I got it off from ebay for not letting me know that the amp doesn't freakin' work properly. Good thing it is a tube amp, and I have a friend who is an amp tech. Should be a cheap fix. Ugggggh. I hate the black cloud that is constantly over my head. Ever heard of karma? Does not exist. I am living proof.

I replaced the tubes. That did not work. I by passed the effects loop. That also did not work. I've read online that these amps do have problems with the sound dropping out. Every one says that it is an easy fix. I'm keeping my fingers crossed.

But karma is never on my side. I've never stole anything. I've never started a fight. I have let people borrow expensive stuff and not return it, and said keep it. I am still friends with my baby's momma, and a girl I was in a relationship with for 7 years. I do not throw stuff away, but donate the stuff to charity....always. I help the homeless, and I'm passionate about gay rights. I LOVE puppies and babies. Bad Karma since 1999. Maybe I need to reach my inner James Dean.

Sorry for ranting.....but if any one has any idea about what is wrong with my amp. I'm all ears. Thanks!

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 Post subject: Re: Looking for a tube amp under $500...........
PostPosted: Mon Mar 07, 2011 9:48 am 
Mothra

Joined: Mon Feb 04, 2008 11:40 am
Posts: 72
crap, that's a real bummer.

if a tube replacement didn't do the trick, i'd say look for the next cheapest fix. there might be a loose connection point somewhere inside the amp. if you feel comfortable opening it up (unplugged of course, and not right after you've had it on) you could have a close look at some of the internal connections. odds are there are circuit boards in there that are connected via ribbon cable. make sure those are seated properly. look for any push on connection points (they'll look like the connections on your speaker tabs) and make sure they fit snug. put it all back together and give it a try.

if it cuts out after it's been running for a while, there is probably something wrong with a part that is exposed to higher temperatures. have your tech inspect the tube sockets and their connection to the circuit board. keep an eye out for larger wattage cement resistors (they'll look like small white bricks). if they look discolored, they might be cooked and will need to be replaced.

whatever the problem is, i'm sure it can be fixed. it just sucks that it wasn't disclosed before you bought it.


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 Post subject: Re: Looking for a tube amp under $500...........
PostPosted: Mon Mar 07, 2011 4:24 pm 
King Ghidorah
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You've probably heard this a million times, but if you go poking around inside your tube amp be real careful. Check the voltages across all caps to make sure they are discharged before you touch anything. Keep your non-dominant hand in your pocket at all times. I actually strap the lead of my multimeter to a wooden chopstick for a little added safety. If I'm talking greek to you here, treat those big blue cylinders like they are venomous cobras. The EMF stored in those caps can "reset your karma" in a millisecond.

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 Post subject: Re: Looking for a tube amp under $500...........
PostPosted: Mon Mar 07, 2011 6:00 pm 
Jet Jaguar
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Adam Smith wrote:
The EMF stored in those caps can "reset your karma" in a millisecond.

Sweet...

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 Post subject: Re: Looking for a tube amp under $500...........
PostPosted: Mon Mar 07, 2011 9:01 pm 
Mothra

Joined: Mon Feb 04, 2008 11:40 am
Posts: 72
not saying that a marshall jtm60 has utility sized capacitors or operates at 30kV, but...

Vulture wrote:
Sweet...

most definitely.


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 Post subject: Re: Looking for a tube amp under $500...........
PostPosted: Tue Mar 08, 2011 12:23 pm 
Donewaiting.com Staff
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Joined: Tue Feb 10, 2004 12:26 pm
Posts: 7648
Location: Columbus
Adam Smith wrote:
You've probably heard this a million times, but if you go poking around inside your tube amp be real careful. Check the voltages across all caps to make sure they are discharged before you touch anything. Keep your non-dominant hand in your pocket at all times. I actually strap the lead of my multimeter to a wooden chopstick for a little added safety. If I'm talking greek to you here, treat those big blue cylinders like they are venomous cobras. The EMF stored in those caps can "reset your karma" in a millisecond.


love this. informative and hilarious.

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 Post subject: Re: Looking for a tube amp under $500...........
PostPosted: Fri Mar 11, 2011 7:24 pm 
Mechagodzilla
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Joined: Tue Feb 24, 2004 3:37 pm
Posts: 1287
Location: lancaster
tom of lindsay wrote:
crap, that's a real bummer.

if a tube replacement didn't do the trick, i'd say look for the next cheapest fix. there might be a loose connection point somewhere inside the amp. if you feel comfortable opening it up (unplugged of course, and not right after you've had it on) you could have a close look at some of the internal connections. odds are there are circuit boards in there that are connected via ribbon cable. make sure those are seated properly. look for any push on connection points (they'll look like the connections on your speaker tabs) and make sure they fit snug. put it all back together and give it a try.

if it cuts out after it's been running for a while, there is probably something wrong with a part that is exposed to higher temperatures. have your tech inspect the tube sockets and their connection to the circuit board. keep an eye out for larger wattage cement resistors (they'll look like small white bricks). if they look discolored, they might be cooked and will need to be replaced.

whatever the problem is, i'm sure it can be fixed. it just sucks that it wasn't disclosed before you bought it.


My amp tech friend replaced the tubes...........still had problems. He then cleaned all the pots, jacks, and everything you can think of. Checked for loose wiring, etc..........that seems to have solved the problem. He is bringing it to me on Sunday, and said he has logged about 3 hours playing time on the amp and has had no problems so far.

Thanks for all your advice!

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 Post subject: Re: Looking for a tube amp under $500...........
PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 2011 1:21 pm 
Mothra

Joined: Mon Feb 04, 2008 11:40 am
Posts: 72
good deal! maybe something just got jostled during shipping.

if you really want to put your mind at ease before taking it to another show, log some hours at stage volume and see how it holds up.


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 Post subject: Re: Looking for a tube amp under $500...........
PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 2011 3:10 pm 
Mechagodzilla
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Location: lancaster
tom of lindsay wrote:
good deal! maybe something just got jostled during shipping.

if you really want to put your mind at ease before taking it to another show, log some hours at stage volume and see how it holds up.


Will do! My band practices really loud, so that should not be a problem.

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