Guitar Nerds Anonymous

Posted on
Page
of 412
  • Valves are overrated.

  • I'm pretty fussy about sounds though, SS amps alone have always sounded a bit wretched to my ear.
    I think the reason some modelling amps sound ok (as can playing through Logic or GB) is the models are developed from actual recordings of the 'real' thing?

  • valves are not overrated in my opinion. Never heard a SS amp that made my hair stand on end like a good tube amp dialled in and singing.

    Pro junior's are great for that for what you need. I really like them.
    Blues junior too if you need reverb and a bit more beef.
    Second hand Peavey classic 30s are always a good option.

  • valves are not overrated in my opinion. Never heard a SS amp that made my hair stand on end like a good tube amp dialled in and singing.

    Pro junior's are great for that for what you need. I really like them.
    Blues junior too if you need reverb and a bit more beef.
    Second hand Peavey classic 30s are always a good option.

    Good enough for BB King, pretty much every jazzer and loads of country players. Depends on what your after.

    If you want to sound like the players that played valve amps, and played them dirty - exploiting their behavioural characteristics. Then it would make sense to play the same as them, that is where all the Mojo comes from I think.

    But if you just want an amp that "sounds good" , especially clean. There is no reason not to go SS. Heaps of sought after country players (your telecaster chicken picken types) play old Peavey Bandits as a preference to the other Fender staples in their "scene". I think people forget how good they sound, and there is no concern about getting the correct vintage valves (increasingly rare) and letting them warm up and switching your amp off before they wear out.

    A 1980's peavey bandit or a 1970's Gibson/Moog Labseries amp will set you back about the price of a average pair of valves. But they will give you instant warm, well balanced and piano like tones INSTANTLY at the flick of the power switch. They also take pedals well, A LOT BETTER than the smaller valve amps.

    If I was getting a NEW amp from the shop, I would look into Tech 21 SS amps. But thats just me, analogue SS ftw.

  • Good enough for BB King,

    BB plays a lab 5 which has a quality onboard compressor, he also uses a Fender twin. With his style, it's more about the fingers than the amp.

    Depends what type and range of sounds you want I suppose but when you start getting into distortion things become complicated. I've heard an old peavy bandit sound good once, in a live band scenario, and I've also had the lovely pleasure (not) of being in a band with two guitarists who used very poor sounding valve amps, so I appreciate the differences are not always black and white. However, in the main, valves trump it for me.

  • Second hand Peavey classic 30s are always a good option.

    Yeah. I once went to help a bandmate buy a guitar and amp with miney he got from a m/cycle accident payout. He's notoriously tight beyond belief so it took some persuading on my part. He ended up with a s/h 80s tele and a peavey classic 50? (the twin speaker one) as it was the only thing in the shop which came close to the fenders which were priced beyond how far we could even count in those days.

  • BB plays a lab 5 which has a quality onboard compressor, he also uses a Fender twin. With his style, it's more about the fingers than the amp.

    .

    I think for anyone who has any sort of competence in their instrument, they should relish playing clean and having all of their notes articulated well. You have to pay much much more for a valve amp to do this than SS.

    But I know where you are coming from, as a little valve amp can sing some rawkus lead tones and have better dynamics and response than a tiny SS amp.

    But these things are changing too, now with digital. The new Fender & Roland modelling amps are extremely well rated. Not tried one myself yet, but people are gushing over them.

  • I have to say I will always prefer a proper valve amp. Even if you can perfectly replicate the sound I still prefer the idea of a real hand wired analog unit rather than a computer. just like I'd prefer to drive a manual gearbox instead of some mumbo jumbo flappy paddle carry-on.

    That said I'm intrigued by the new Fractal Audio Axe-FX. Lot of artists using it live and in the studio!

  • Oh God... Finally, after playing guitar for fifteen years I've got the Fender bug, I desperately want a '69 Thinline Tele' or an Eric Johnson Strat... I'm even considering trading my PRS Custom 22 for a new Telecaster Select flame maple top. Oh dear...

    Also on the fingernail issue a while back I have a very weak index finger nail (nailbiter) on my pick hand, I let my nails grow very long for classical and I really found that clear nail varnish was a big help. Also a key tip is to file them regularily so you don't get snaggles that can pull or break. Basically apply varnish once a day everyday and file them once a day everyday. Sorted.

  • Lush bound fingerboard is lush.

  • Haha Nahg, your taste is as ever pretty much the polar opposite of mine in almost all things guitar. Vive la diference and all but strats with stained flame maple caps and bound fingerboards... Oh lord.

    Not wishing to prolong the SS/Valve debate (which, as we all know is like the great bikeradar RLJ/Helmet debate except it's possibly even more subjective, pointless and has been raging boringly unabated for forty years) but I think distinction between clean and distorted sounds DFP makes is an oversimplification.

    Mind you, any dicussion of electric guitar tone is bound to be an oversimplification. The complexities of various harmonics clipping in different manners, power supply, rectifier sag and the oft overlooked speaker and cab, all combine into an infinitley variable end result. And even then that end result is entirely objective. In most cases the room an amp is in has a far bigger overall effect than any change of valve or speaker.

    I don't claim to be a great expert and I'm no purist, but I think I do have a pretty well atuned ear and can pick out most reasonably common and classic combinations in a blindfold test. I can pick up the differences between a tweed, black and silver-faced Fenders from recordings and in most cases get the guitar too. I find the subtleties in these varying clean or edge of clean tones are, after a while, quite distinct and flavourful. I'm not saying there aren't great sounding ss amps out there, jusy that what I like, what i've become accustomed to and what I consider to be a great clean tone is far more often than not, a valve amp.

    But what do I know? I also happen to love the sound of a DI'd guitar and have done loads of recording that way. I wonder if it would be interesting to post some examples of the tones we're talking about? if this thread is still about later tonight i'll stick a few clips up.

  • uh oh, i've ranted.

  • Good post dooks.

    In terms of recording, I think the type of gear you are using is really really unimportant in the scheme of things. Like you said things like room makes a difference, but what makes by far the most is how you mic things. Also, amps that sound amazing in real life can come out mediocre recorded and stuff that sounds a bit shit in real life can sound incredible recorded.

    I use a little orange crush amp for all my recorded lead tones and often my "worst" guitar, which is a cheap strat copy with dodgy wiring and dried out caps. I have bigger amps, decent dirt pedals (EHX english muffn amongst others) but they sound bollocks recorded in comparison.

    All that stuff about valve amps you mention dooks is exactly what makes them an annoying chore for me. So much distractions (which the gear whore would relish). But not me, I have enough problems focusing on my playing. I hate gear whore-ism.

  • True, true. I'm a great believer in finding what works for you and sticking with it and can't stand that aquisition of aquisition's sake thing. (probably jealousy)

    I mean, I like to tinker and experiment with tunings, pedals and diferent instruments or whatever but it terms of fundamental electric guitar tone i'm pretty much a Fender + Fender guy. It's just the sound my ears identify as "right". Single coils though a decent all valve Fender amp of the appropriate size for the room you're in. Might be a champ or it might be a Twin. I like it turned up to somewhere just the polite side of raspy. Then add flavour with a few pedals and there you go.

    Got some gigs coming up, hope i'll get the chance to bust out some electrical guitar.

  • Valve amps do two things that solid state ones can't.
    Firstly they sound beautiful when overdriven, and produce nice sounding harmonics
    Secondly when you are overdriving one and you roll off the guitar volume a little they clean up nicely.

    Transistor amps are great when you do not want them to overdrive - keyboards, accoustic guitars, DJ equipment, etc.

  • Haha Nahg, your taste is as ever pretty much the polar opposite of mine in almost all things guitar.

    This is so true it's hilarious although for the most part I've been leaning more your way lately. I'd love the Thinline Telecaster and a Jazzmaster more than anything right now! I'm also really really in love with the Epiphone Wilshire at the moment!

    I've actually gone a bit mad on modifying my cheaper guitars to bring them up to scratch at the moment. I've got some Kluson style Tonepros tuners for my PRS Santana SE1 on order which is all I want to do with that. My favourite guitar I've ever owned ever.

    I also have a Tremonti SE which sounds shit so I'm going to get some Mullinax P90 pickups, a Bigsby B5, swap out the bridge for a Tonepros tunomatic and get some more of the Kluson style Tonepros tuners for it. Should be pretty great when I'm finished with it. I've also sanded and clearcoated the head stocks on both so they don't have the gash PRS SE branding with the artist names!

    Then I also need to get some Grover Rotomatic Art-Deco Imperial tuners for my DeArmond X-155 jazzbox.

    THEN I need to get some decent vintage style locking tuners for my favourite guitar at the moment. Squier Telecaster Thinline Custom series HH. I've sanded the top down and painted it as a Goldtop with matching headstock (need a Fender decal for the headstock, lame I know) I've also rewired it with a Seymour Duncan '59 at the neck and a Seymour Duncan Dimebucker at the bridge. Should sound quite metal but it has the nicest grimy country twang ever! Great combination for a nice old school Stones style rock sound! I can't stop playing it. I didn't even pay for the guitar, got it as a "discount" when I was buying an Ibanez RGT220A Prestige years ago and never bothered to use it until I set it up completely different and Goldtopped it last week and now I'm in love with it!

    I'll try and get some pics of it up later....

    Rant finished!

  • Transistor amps are great when you do not want them to overdrive - keyboards, accoustic guitars, DJ equipment, etc.

    Incidentally Randall make the best SS amp for heavier, rougher tones. Dimebag endorsed them until Krank came along and made the ultimate heavy valve amp.

    Personally though you really can't fault Blackstar (which I use) and Engl.

    The new Mesa Boogie Roadking with twin valve sets and outputs is incredible though but it's just way too expensive!

  • Valve amps do two things that solid state ones can't.
    Firstly they sound beautiful when overdriven, and produce nice sounding harmonics
    Secondly when you are overdriving one and you roll off the guitar volume a little they clean up nicely.

    Transistor amps are great when you do not want them to overdrive - keyboards, accoustic guitars, DJ equipment, etc.

    Myths! If transistor based overdrive sounds so bad, why is it that pretty much everyone uses stomp boxes for dirt?

  • I want an amp, bedroom practice size but with enough poke for small gig backline at a push. Something with a great clean sound which can also make ears bleed when I want to go metal.
    A knowledgable friend has suggested Fender juniors, I guess I'm limited to second hand as they seem pricey (for my budget, not overall).
    Any recs from you geeks?

    You could do a lot worse than the Blackstar HT-5C http://www.blackstaramps.co.uk/products/­ht-5c/ assuming you want a combo. It's "only" 5 watts, but in the same way that an AC30 is "only" 30 watts.

    Gigsounds in Mitcham Lane are a main dealer.

  • surely you can forget clean sounds at volume on a 5 watt all valve amp?

  • Depends on the tubes.

  • RPM, go on musicradar forums, stuff like those blackstars always come up.

    You could probably do better, value-wise though. Like VHT special 6/Ultra 6.

  • Cross posting from FB; but does anyone have a digital delay pedal they want to get rid of? Not too concerned about condition; just want to try it out with a dub siren thing, that needs a bit of delay to make it less like the constant tone that it is...

    £40 or less if that's feasible. Been recommended the behringer and a Joyo JF33 analogue delay, but the latter is postal only... from somewhere forrin.

  • Post a reply
    • Bold
    • Italics
    • Link
    • Image
    • List
    • Quote
    • code
    • Preview
About

Guitar Nerds Anonymous

Posted by Avatar for dooks @dooks

Actions