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> Possibly Starting A Band, Need Advice On Amps Etc
Caelumamittendum
post Aug 2 2017, 04:45 PM
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So I've come across an opportunity to start a band from scratch, which is what I've been looking for for a long time. It's not certain yet though, and we might try and borrow a practice room from someone just to see if we can get along.

However if we do get along, I'll need some new gear amp wise. My budget is limited though, so I'm looking at used gear.

Will a Laney Ironheart 60W head with say a Marshall JCM900 lead 1960b cab work? That's just about within my budget to buy used.

Any other suggestions? smile.gif


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Darius Wave
post Aug 3 2017, 11:01 AM
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Sure man! As for Marshall...these are still reference cabs...no matter if loaded with V30's or G12T-75...more a matter of taste...forget the myths from the internet - G12T-75 is still a great speaker to set your tone through. As for the ironheart I had not much experience but personally I would not by an amp above 60Watts anyway....totally enough not only for soundchecks smile.gif


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Mertay
post Aug 3 2017, 11:16 AM
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Usually a big (and heavy) 1x12 combo is a good minimum, think old peavey bandits or Fender hot rod's.

After that its really up to you cause tone is also involved and we all have our preferences. My recommendation is if possible get something with a line out, aside band practice you can use it to directly connect to your soundcard for recording at home too.


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Caelumamittendum
post Aug 3 2017, 01:57 PM
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Todd suggested something completely different to me last night, which was getting a PA system and running BIAS FX (which I use at home now) through that.

I'm no expert though, so don't know what would work best.


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Darius Wave
post Aug 3 2017, 02:19 PM
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There is no "best" unfortunately. Though...P.A would useful all around while guitar amp...obviously not. You can still program a footcontroller to work with bias....but... you would need a good P.A to make bias sound good through it....so anyway it's still an expense...


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Caelumamittendum
post Aug 3 2017, 02:39 PM
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So you would go for head/cab? smile.gif


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Mertay
post Aug 3 2017, 02:56 PM
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QUOTE (Caelumamittendum @ Aug 3 2017, 12:57 PM) *
Todd suggested something completely different to me last night, which was getting a PA system and running BIAS FX (which I use at home now) through that.

I'm no expert though, so don't know what would work best.


This is the new generation approach and its very popular. But its more of a solution for gigging musicians like 3-4 nights a week cause then carrying heavy stuff really starts to bother...

If you have concerns on portability then it makes sense (like if you have a bad back injury etc.), on the other hand if you have a budget for a cool tube amp and a sweet cab. there's no digital product to give you that joy (and you know how I'm into digital...). I wouldn't want to give any directions to you as this is such a personal preference, maybe going to stores to test products might help you so don't rush into it.


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Todd Simpson
post Aug 3 2017, 04:37 PM
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It is the "new thing" so to speak as it's just not that common even still, but you are seeing touring musicians start to go this route and bedroom musicians starting to adopt it as well. The FR/FR (Full range flat response) guitar cabinet is now a "Thing". The funny part is that an FR/FR guitar cab is really just a fancy PA speaker in a box that looks roughly like a guitar cab.

I mentioned getting a single powered P.A. speaker with a 15 inch driver (for his extended range guitars). Many AXE FX guys are starting to use full range cabs/speakers, especially if they use extended range guitars which go well below the standard guitar bass frequencies. V30 speakers were never designed for 8 string guitars IMHO.

Also, later on he could add a matching speaker and have stereo. Further, two nice powered speakers could be used at home as well for another playback option when testing a mix or just listening to music/games.

The best part is you can get a case for the p.a. speaker with a handle and wheels which makes it easy to lug about. Even with case and casters, a half stack is still quite a bit of heft to lug about and I'm just over it. It was fun when I was MUCH younger smile.gif Not anymore though.

Also, folks that record with guitar plugins like bias, typically listen through their monitor speakers. So most of their patches sound good through a fuller range system. Use those patches through a guitar cab and they sound wrong.

Stil, a STACK or HALF STACK just looks COOL on stage and in the home. It sorta makes you feel like a Badass to "Ride The Lightening" as it were smile.gif So there's that to consider as well. Wads of options really smile.gif

Todd



QUOTE (Mertay @ Aug 3 2017, 09:56 AM) *
This is the new generation approach and its very popular. But its more of a solution for gigging musicians like 3-4 nights a week cause then carrying heavy stuff really starts to bother...

If you have concerns on portability then it makes sense (like if you have a bad back injury etc.), on the other hand if you have a budget for a cool tube amp and a sweet cab. there's no digital product to give you that joy (and you know how I'm into digital...). I wouldn't want to give any directions to you as this is such a personal preference, maybe going to stores to test products might help you so don't rush into it.



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Roadside
post Aug 4 2017, 08:48 AM
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Hey Kael,

I just bought new head+amp as I started playing in a band again as well.

Actually I started off with ENGL Screamer Combo 50 W as I really digged it in terms of lead guitars and distortion. But it was way too unflexible.

So I had a long lasting discussion with a guy from our local (huge) store. So we tested ourselves through many boxes (2x12/4x12/Marshall/Orange/DV/MESA) to see the box influence and as of now, I would estimate the box to provide 20-30% share of the sound quality.

My budget was not limited, but I did not want to spend too much money on a box, as I do not know yet how it will work out with the band.

He suggested a DV Mark cab, which I never heard of before, but I was very impressed by the sound. And here come a few more advantages:

- It is totally light weight - the magnetic plates of the speaker are made out of some special sort of ceramic. They are a lot smaller, lighter in weight, but provide even higher performance. Cab is somewhat 10-12 kg. It is a pleasure carrying it around biggrin.gif
- it is 20-30% cheaper than other comparable cabs

https://www.thomann.de/de/dv_mark_neoclassi...3983e682c411e0a


Regarding the head I was just roaming around to find something very flexible, as we are not fixed to a certain genre yet. Again, we tried out lots of head <1.500 €. At some point he came up with Hughes & Kettner Tubemeister 40. It is a 4 channel amp (clean/crunch/lead/full disto), has some build in effects, has a performance switch for home usage (1W/5W/XX W / 40 W) and it is a brilliantly diversified amp.

If you crank it up, and you can do that at home based on a 5 W setting, sound becomes amazing due to the 4 build in tubes.

It is also including a liner out for whatever kind of recording you want to apply.

Anyhow, maybe it is worth a try. For 900$ there is nothing I would prefer over my current head.

Tim

This post has been edited by Roadside: Aug 4 2017, 08:50 AM
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Mertay
post Aug 4 2017, 02:18 PM
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There is also the fender hotrod3 route to be used with pedals.

Friend of mine is a pedal nut, he has a mesa markV combo, a marshall TSL combo and a Fender hotrod3 with jensen speaker i it. The fender gets used the most, great clean and takes pedals amazing (the hotrod is actually famous for taking pedals well).

One would expect the mesa to be versatile too which it is but learning the eq options on it takes more time than one imagines. I never got to feel confident with it during my visits and normally it takes me seconds to understand a traditional amps capabilitly.


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Caelumamittendum
post Aug 4 2017, 03:53 PM
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I think Mesas are out of the question money wise. As is most options to be honest. I can't remember if I posted it in the first post, but I think I have around $800 all in all. So not a lot.


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AK Rich
post Aug 4 2017, 05:51 PM
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Maybe take a look at the Vox VT series combos. I have a Vox VT-120+ which is a 2x12 combo that is pretty flexible and plenty loud. I bought mine used about 5 years ago with a foot controller for $300. After I got my Orange gear and the Fractal FX 8, the Vox just collects dust though.

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Todd Simpson
post Aug 6 2017, 02:56 AM
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I had forgotten about those but yes! They have wads of built in fx and can do everything from crazy distorted crunch to sparkling clean and the foot controller lets you control it all. One version of it is black with silver grate over the speaker which looks spiff smile.gif Looked far more "Metal" than any other vox am I'd seen and sounded more "Metal" in general than most vox amps I"ve tried, then again this is a solid state amp, not a tube amp.


The combo makes everything easier as it's one piece of gear. Plug in and your done. smile.gif Very little setup at the gig and less to worry about. I remember using half stacks live and always worrying about the cable from the head to the amp or if somebody was going to knock the whole thing over while bouncing around on stage, etc. The combo has a low profile and low center of gravity. Not likely to get knocked over and no speaker cable to go out on you right before the gig.


Also they are not crazy pricey! So they are well within your range, even with the pedal controller.

Yet another spiff option smile.gif
Here is a vid of the VOX VT (Silver grate grill) Very similar to what rich has.



After thinking about all this, do you have any idea which route is sounding the most practical?


Todd


QUOTE (AK Rich @ Aug 4 2017, 12:51 PM) *
Maybe take a look at the Vox VT series combos. I have a Vox VT-120+ which is a 2x12 combo that is pretty flexible and plenty loud. I bought mine used about 5 years ago with a foot controller for $300. After I got my Orange gear and the Fractal FX 8, the Vox just collects dust though.


This post has been edited by Todd Simpson: Aug 6 2017, 02:59 AM


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Roadside
post Aug 6 2017, 03:06 PM
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Any clue about your decision? Ever tried some in your budget?
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Caelumamittendum
post Aug 6 2017, 05:01 PM
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I used to own a cheap Laney MXD120H, I think it was called. I'd like to go a bit better than that. I'm still thinking the Laney Ironheart.


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AK Rich
post Aug 6 2017, 05:36 PM
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QUOTE (Todd Simpson @ Aug 5 2017, 05:56 PM) *
I had forgotten about those but yes! They have wads of built in fx and can do everything from crazy distorted crunch to sparkling clean and the foot controller lets you control it all. One version of it is black with silver grate over the speaker which looks spiff smile.gif Looked far more "Metal" than any other vox am I'd seen and sounded more "Metal" in general than most vox amps I"ve tried, then again this is a solid state amp, not a tube amp.
Todd

Maybe more of a hybrid tube/digital amp since it does employ a 12AX7.

http://www.voxamps.com/vt120+
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SirJamsalot
post Aug 7 2017, 02:24 AM
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amp tones really do boil down to personal taste and genre. I've found that it's rare to turn up an amp past 4 because the audio technician who mics your box will complain about that - so you really need to focus your attention on a head that can deliver the sweet spot tone at younger volume levels. at the same time, drums raise the level of volume on stage by a huge amount, so you're gonna want an amp that at the same has enough juice to compete with that volume level. 100W is overkill (my 100W mesa head rarely sees over 4 on stage). 30 W would probably be ideal as long as you are micing your amp and keeping it on a stand pointed upwards towards your head so you can hear it directly as well as thru your wedge. If you're like me, you love to include feedback, which means you're higher gain and need the speakers pointed horizontally instead of at your head - so perhaps 50W. The main thing to remember is that you may or may not get a good mix to hear yourself playing!! You can minimize that risk with a head / cab you can stand in front of on stage that has enough power to compete with your drummer.

I understand going direct into the PA board is a up-coming thing per this thread. keep in mind you are 100% at the mercy of the audio technician in that scenario to hear yourself playing. PA speakers are almost ALWAYS positioned at the edge of the stage pointing away from you - you won't be able to hear yourself thru them. it can be measly 40DB on stage - you can have a conversation with your bassist while playing a song, while just 10 ft away from you, audience is getting the full force of those PA/speakers' output @ 100+db. That means make sure you have a way to hear yourself because what you hear on stage without a mix, is not guaranteed to be what the audience hears. In Ear monitors for a PA solution are a must IMO. Audio levels ALWAYs increase as the evening goes on - but the wedges rarely do - without keeping on top of the technician during your set (which is not easy to do! especially when he leaves for the bar), you're going to be conducting the dreaded volume war on stage for self preservation.

Personally, I'd stick with a traditional amp - something aimed at me so I can position myself in front of to hear myself, or reach back and dink with the volume a little. Don't count on there always being a good sound technician giving you the mix you want. It's a learning curve that only experience can teach you, but the tried and tested amps are a good starting point. Mesa, Orange, Marshall, Fender, VOX - anything all tube is always win because... what do electronics always try to emulate? hmmm?



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Todd Simpson
post Aug 7 2017, 11:01 PM
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Good point!! HYBRID is a much more apt description. It's got a tube preamp section after all.


QUOTE (AK Rich @ Aug 6 2017, 12:36 PM) *
Maybe more of a hybrid tube/digital amp since it does employ a 12AX7.

http://www.voxamps.com/vt120+



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Darius Wave
post Aug 8 2017, 11:46 AM
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I would risk to establish that to play with real drums, real amp will better cut through the mix with it's full frequency response and harmonics. Simulations can sound great but if you want to purchase a budget P.A, you need to realize that there will be some loss in mids and harmonics so even sweatest tone could get lost in the mix as soon as drums start to play. Buying a very good cabinet for simulated devices is not budget thing. I would personally go for something that is cheap and reference. JCM900 and 1960A cab should really do the job. Also...the ability to play loud on a real amp will determine your practise to be even more efficient since the tube kind of distortion is usually more "demanding" arituculation wise.

I do use simulations as well of course....but what I've found and it may be just me (subjectively) is that when a guys with a "heavy hand" playes to create a cab impulse, the frequency response of and amp is different that a "softer hand" guy has. It's a day to night difference. Yet...If a "soft hand" player playes throug ha cab impulse, the impulse does not change the overall frequency response as much as a real amp does. In other words...it allows you to play less efficient asn still getting that "mean tone". you need to ask yourself if this is good or bad for you.


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Caelumamittendum
post Aug 11 2017, 07:24 AM
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It is possible for me to get a Laney Ironheart 60 watt used on the cheap - cheaper than I thought it would be, so hopefully I can make that deal.


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