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Anybody else a DSL fan?

Discussion in 'Amp Central Station' started by Twofingerlou, Jan 12, 2021 at 8:08 AM.

  1. Twofingerlou

    Twofingerlou TDPRI Member

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    The last couple years of getting back into guitar I’ve gone through a handful or more cheaper solid state amps. They have their place and some are better than others. I’d play around with one in the store, oh this don’t sound bad! Get it home and sooner than later find it wasn’t all cracked up like I thought it was.

    I ended up down the tube amp hole and bought a Fender Hot Rod Deluxe. Really nice amp, the cleans and the reverb are phenomenal. The drive channels were a little meh to me and the volume was super finicky. Barely there or blow the windows out loud.

    Next came this little 5 watt DSL. I’m sure most wont give the nod to Marshall for clean tones but this little dude cleans up pretty nice imo. Is it fender clean? Not quite but non the less. But this little thing can air it out once you put the coals to it. The reverb is nothing like the hotrod but reverb hasn’t been a main component when I’ve been playing around/shopping for amps personally.

    I’ve enjoyed the little DSL so much I grabbed the DSL40CR last week. Wasn’t really needed just more so a want. It will get blow your windows out loud like the hotrod, but yet the volume controls are a lot more forgiving.

    I’m far from good at the guitar, but having quality equipment makes it more enjoyable and entertaining to play around with.

    The DSL combos seem hard to beat IMO

    294AA6C6-33EE-4D9D-844A-916E8458503F.png
     
  2. SunShadsCrash1990

    SunShadsCrash1990 NEW MEMBER!

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    Oh yeah, there are tons of us (DSL fans). Your absolutely right about the cleans. In my opinion the DSL is the best all arounder tube amp you can buy. I have the head version (DSL100HR). I bought it the same month they released them.

    The stock tubes are just fine but I highly recommend swapping the power tubes for Electro harmonix EL34's whenever your current stock JJ's go. The JJ el34's are a little muddy and noisy. I tried every current production power tube and almost every current production preamp tube. And the E.H. EL34'S came out on top. They completely got rid of excess noise. Now I can have the amp up more than half way and not hear any noise when I'm not playing. For the pre amp tubes I found the stock low noise JJ was best in v1 (and again I tried a ton of other tubes) and I have a Mullard CV4004 in V2. V3 and V4 sounded best with the cheap stock shuguang 12ax7b's and again, I tried tons of tubes but for some reason those 12ax7b's just sound right in v3 and v4(although with tung sols or mullard 12ax7s in v3 I noticed the amp reverb is stronger/more prominent).

    I build pedals and recently I built a morning glory (with a blues breaker option) clone that sounds ****ing fantastic through the DSL. The dsl takes all my overdrives (really all pedals) really well. My main overdrives are a modified TS9 (optionsl asymmetrical clipping mod, optional no diode mod and an optional "body" mod that adds back some low end), a Klon Centaur I also built and now the morning glory with mods(which I can't stress enough what a great overdrive it is especially with the mods I came up with for versatility). But my fuzz face and treble booster dual pedal, harmonic tremolo, chorus, vibrato, delay, compression etc. etc. etc. all of which I built or modified sound wonderful with the DSL.

    I run my DSL through two Orange PPC 1x12 cabs. One has the stock V30 which delivers great mids and the other has an eminence "swamp thang" which has less mids and more pronounced articulate/tight lows and highs so they balance great. And if I just want to use a single 1x12 (cause it's less to carry) the Swamp Thang is capable of handling the whole 100 watts the DSL puts out.

    It's certainly not just you. Many of us have discovered how versatile the DSL's are and how great they sound for clean, edge of breakup and full on Marshall JCM800 type tones. Classic or modern DSL's can do it all and most importantly do it all WELL!
     
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  3. KirbyBarba

    KirbyBarba TDPRI Member

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    Yeah, I've been thinking about getting the DSL40CR. The DSL range gets good reviews but not much "hype" like a lot of other amps.
     
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  4. Twofingerlou

    Twofingerlou TDPRI Member

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    Thanks for the input! I noticed with the 40 watt I do have some “air noise” when you turn it up near the halfway point. Wasn’t sure if this was the amp or the pickups in my guitar causing that.
     
  5. Twofingerlou

    Twofingerlou TDPRI Member

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    Go for it, I’m sure you wouldn’t be disappointed!
     
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  6. Rowdyman

    Rowdyman Tele-Meister

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    I have a DSL20CR. My first Marshall and I love it.
    I bought it for the 'clean' channel. (Classic Gain)
    To reduce weight, I changed to a neo speaker and have just now, aquired a 'Bee-Box'.
    I'm going to try to stuff it in there,, may not work; the width and depth are perfect but the box is an inch 'shorter'. (inside) The speaker was a tight fit before,,,,,
    DIY engineering time,,,,,,,,

    Wish me luck,,,,,, RM
     
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  7. DFB1

    DFB1 Tele-Holic Silver Supporter

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    I bought a DSL 5 last month and love it.
    I only play at home,and the 1w setting us perfect for late night playing.
    Both channels sound good to me. All the gain I need,and you are right about the cleans.

    It is all the amp I need.
     
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  8. 65tinbender

    65tinbender TDPRI Member

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    DSL40CR owner here. Play at home on 20 watts with a very supportive wife.
    Chased the 5 watt thing for years. There is no comparison IMHO.
    I have only set the bias using a multimeter and a Youtube video. It was way off from the factory and I put it at 33. That and the speaker loosening up and it sounds great.
     
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  9. Tim S

    Tim S Tele-Holic Gold Supporter

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    To me, the DSL40CR is the best combo amp under $1,000. The cleans with the huge bottom end response are never talked about enough. Geez, it has a Resonance knob! And MIDI? The digital reverb is surprisingly good too.

    Sign me up for the fan club too.
     
  10. GFrank

    GFrank Tele-Meister

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    I loved the DSL401 - the one with el84s - that I had 6-8 years ago. It was a bit of a Marshall/Vox hybrid - hot-rodded Marshall tones with Vox (el84) compression. They got a bad rap because of the over-heating issue, but once Marshall corrected that, they were awesome.
    I still plan to buy another one of these days......

    Also - Jeff Beck has been using a 100 watt DSL for years and sounds amazing live....
     
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  11. randym

    randym TDPRI Member

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    I tried the DSL5CR and the DSL20CR and kept the 20. Liked them both, but liked the additional outputs and controls on the 20. Really like the upgrades on the DSL40, but it's a little too much (power, money) for what I need.
     
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  12. Twofingerlou

    Twofingerlou TDPRI Member

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    It’s probably enough for most people’s needs!
     
  13. Twofingerlou

    Twofingerlou TDPRI Member

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    I figured since I had the 5 watt I might as well go for broke and get the 40. The 40 can stay in the bedroom and the 5 will be my portable if I go to a buddy’s house or something to play.
     
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  14. Guitarteach

    Guitarteach Doctor of Teleocity

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    DSL40CR crunch channel is killer.. a good match for my elderly JMP.

    The new version with 6 way switch is cool. Two very effective master volumes make it perfect gigging amp.

    Gotta to be best low to mid cost properly versatile option around.
     
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  15. gkterry

    gkterry Tele-Holic Silver Supporter

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    Marshall clean tones are VASTLY underrated. I play honky tonk country using a Marshall amp. Nuff said. After all Marshall's pedigree stems from Fender amps.
     
  16. kookaburra

    kookaburra Tele-Afflicted

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    I can say for certain that I dug the DSLs that were out in the late 90s or early 2000s. Tried one out myself, and hear plenty of touring bands use them (mostly 50 watt jobs). Good stuff!

    I don't know the newer ones well with the exception of a guy I know that uses the DSL 40 1x12 combo in his classic rock cover band. I think it sounds pretty good!
     
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  17. mkdaws32

    mkdaws32 Tele-Afflicted Gold Supporter

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    I do like the DSLs. I played DSL 40 1x12 combo a couple of times and it sounded great - Marshall-y ;)

    But they are probably my 3rd favorite Marshall amps right now. I’m absolutely in love with the JCM800 SC20c 1x10 combo. It is THE Marshall sound to me. Too rich for my blood, though. I also love, almost as much, the Origin 20c. Its a simple 1 channel amp, but has great cleans, but really screams with a good booster or OD in front of the amp. Given it’s the cheapest Marshall offering and a third of the price of the SC20, I see either the Origin 20watt head or combo in my very near future.
     
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  18. 7171551

    7171551 Tele-Afflicted

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    Another happy DSL40CR owner here... But I will say that some of the QC issues that bedeviled the 40C and other DSL models still show up from time to time.
     
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  19. Chud

    Chud Poster Extraordinaire

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    Agreed on Marshall cleans. I almost like them more than Fender cleans...almost. :twisted:
     
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  20. fjblair

    fjblair Tele-Holic

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    They are great amps, but because they aren't boutique or vintage or a reissue they are not internet forum darlings.
     
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