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Blackstar Amp Club

Discussion in 'Amp Owners Clubs' started by tjk3052, Feb 1, 2010.

  1. stacker22

    stacker22 TDPRI Member

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    blackstar club 40 ht

    Blackstar club 40ht venue with ext.
     

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  2. bluesky6

    bluesky6 TDPRI Member

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    Swapped in the Jensen C8R. It balances out the frequencies.

    Also swapped out the Ruby 12AX7WBC HG+ for a TAD 7025 (just because I'd one lying around).

    Now, the non-overdrive channel (with gain maxed) is very usable and comparable to my JCA22HV head. The ISF effect is also a lot more noticeable. I still miss having a tone control!

    The overdrive channel is still very scooped. I'll need to learn some metal riffs. Any suggestions?
     
  3. Duffy

    Duffy Tele-Holic

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    I don't know if you are still in the window where you can put that back together in its stock form and return it; but if you are, I would highly recommend that you return it and get the HT5-RH.


    It would cost twice as much, but you would have the head version of the amp you really seem to want - full EQ on the overdrive channel "and" a real tone knob for the clean channel. Just having only the "tone and volume" to control the clean channel would seem like not much EQ control, but the clean channel on my HT5-RH sound really remarkable and very three dimensional. It is one of the nicest sounding clean channels that I have, but not at all like the clean channel on my Fender '65 blackface Deluxe Reverb RI, but still remarkably awesome.


    I think the five watt HT is one of the best amps I have ever owned.




    Aside from replacing that metal HT1, it sounds like you liked the Tonkerlite twelve inch speaker best. Possibly this would be the best set up for you. That amp is going to want to "only" sound metal. There is not enough control on the amp to really shape the sound to something outside the metal realm.


    A good amp man could go inside the amp and change some things around to change the character of the amp, but the cost would be as much as sending it back and getting the highly adjustable HT5-RH.


    The HT5 version is, in my opinion, a remarkable amp. I use mine right next to my Marshall DSL40C and play it at least as much as I do the Marshall. It produces a whole lot of overdrive when on the overdrive channel but the clean is really beautiful. The volume can be turned down to less than conversational level and it still sounds really great and can be totally saturated with tube overdrive sound, but you can back off the gain and control the overdrive.


    I thought about the HT1 metal version that's on sale, but I don't think I'd get much use out of it. With just a little more control over the tone I think I'd like that amp though.


    As you noticed, the sound and tone of that metal amp has to do with a lot more than the tubes, and changing the tubes is only going to have a partial solution to offer. It derives its gain and heavy overdrive sound from other components in that complicated circuit, other than the tubes.


    These are great amps, but if that metal version isn't getting it for you, returning it might be the best idea.


    Here is a link to some info on the HT5-RH.
    http://www.americanmusical.com/Item--i-BLC-HT5RH


    I hope this helps you. I think with that amp you have you are going to be stuck in that quagmire of high gain unless you spend some significant money experimenting with having it modded.


    Good luck with it. I hope you can get an EQ pedal for it that brings it around or that you can find some other way out of its total metal zone.
     
  4. StormJH1

    StormJH1 Tele-Holic

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    I got the HT-1MC (Metal) also! Though I actually kinda like it for non-metal tones. The clean channel is just like a British voiced amp, except perhaps the speaker is voiced to be darker.

    Can anyone confirm if the speaker is 4 ohms or 8 ohms? I was trying to buy a Celestion Eight 15 for a Pathfinder replacement but messed up and got a 4 ohm one (Pathfinder takes 8). The extension speaker jack on the HT-1MC says 4-16 ohms, but does that then mean the speaker is 4 ohms? Couldn't find that in the specs.

    I suppose I could try it, but the drive channel might sound horrible, and the clean channel gets bright enough given that it's a small speaker. But since I don't do metal either, the Celestion (could) have better voicing for what i play.
     
  5. bluesky6

    bluesky6 TDPRI Member

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    The speaker is an 8 ohm.
     
  6. bluesky6

    bluesky6 TDPRI Member

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    @duffy, thanks for the suggestions.

    If I were to return the amp, it would be for the HT-1R. But that model is almost twice the price!!

    I actually do enjoy tweaking amps, so the cost of the speakers etc is worth it :)
     
  7. Duffy

    Duffy Tele-Holic

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    I looked at that one watt head but decided on the HT5-RH, which is an awesome amp, one of the nicest amps I have ever played and possibly the nicest sounding amp I own within its volume range, and it can get loud but sounds wonderful played soft with full tube saturation and beautiful overdrive. I have it right by my side, next to my Marshall
    DSL40C which is also a super great amp.


    The metal version you have is definitely a great buy, but I'm not sure that you will be able to get it to sound the way you desire by just changing tubes and speakers. I think the circuit will need to be modified and there are some real good amp guys out there, some close to you I'm sure, that could do it for a reasonable price. They would change some resistor values and so on, until they managed to get the amp to come around.


    One problem I think exists is that Blackstar does not make the schematics of these amps available to the public, only to authorized repair centers. Never the less, I believe the schematics have found their way into the hands of amp dudes anyway. A good amp dude could compare the schematics and identify what actually makes the amp sound different - different component values here and there. I can see a good amp man making it happen.


    In the meantime, like you said, it is fun to mod you own amps and guitars. I have replaced speakers myself and had very excellent results. I found the "Ragin Cajun" Eminence ten inch speaker to be a great "loud" speaker with great tone. They make a twelve inch version of it too I think. It is a very sensitive speaker which equates to it being about twice as loud as your stock amp.


    A good EQ pedal might also be able to give you the tone you want. A clean boost pedal and an EQ might make a world of difference and give you a lot of new tonal territory.


    You might be able to use the clean channel with a Fulltone Fulldrive 2 pedal in front of it. It has overdrive/distortion with a built in eq section and it is a very quiet pedal. I bet that would help a lot to get you where you are trying to go. The absence of any actual tone control is definitely a disadvantage. The IFS knob just doesn't sit in for a good eq section, although I like the additional sculpting capabilities of the IFS knob on my HT5-RH.


    By the way, I really want to get a Fulldrive 2 myself. I really dig those pedals. They are not cheap but they produce great overdrive sounds that I dig.


    Let us know how your tone quest goes with this amp and good luck.
     
  8. StormJH1

    StormJH1 Tele-Holic

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    Thank you. But doesn't the impedance of the extension jack have to be the same as the internal speaker? One just stands in for the other one, and we know the external jack works with 4, 8, or 16 ohms. I have to think a 4 ohm is okay as the mounted speaker then also.

    But I'm not so sure it would actually sound GOOD in this amp, and due to the tight quarters it sounds like an absolute beast to get the old one out and new one in, unlike a SCX2 or Pathfinder swap which is open-back and can be done in 5 minutes. Sigh.

    I actually think the "metal" in the name and livery of the amp is more bothersome to people than it needs to be. There's probably a scoop to the clean tones but not a dramatic one, and especially with single coils the amp has a good amount of clean headroom. It has obvious limitations due to its size, but I've enjoyed the amp at what was basically a half-off price.
     
  9. Duffy

    Duffy Tele-Holic

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    Glad you are finding that amp acceptable for your purposes.


    I really dig my Blackstar HT5-RH thru my awesome Avatar cabinet loaded with twin Eminence "Swamp Thang" super sensitive speakers with giant magnets. They are rated at 150 watts each, so with my DSL100H I don't have to worry about blowing a speaker. The Blackstar sounds wonderfull and awesome thru this two by twelve, twelve inch speaker cab.


    As far as ohms if that amp is rated 4 -16 ohms for the speakers, I would go middle of the road with 8 ohms. Plus most amps will use an 8 ohm cabinet, but many will not use a 4 ohm cabinet. Plus it is more difficult to find a great 4 ohm speaker. There is a huge range of 8 ohm speakers available.


    I like the "Swamp Thang" speaker because of its rich upper mids and mids, and its deep low end, with a very nice high end but zero ice pickiness.


    If your amp has a scaled down mid range, the "Swamp Thang" speaker would likely add a lot of mid range and upper mid range. I like a lot of upper mids and mids in my amp, personally.


    A Celestion Vintage 30 is a great speaker and has plentiful high end sparkle. It is a real nice, high quality speaker.


    I have a couple strats with Fender Custom Shop "Texas Special" single coil pickups and they are very bright and can even be adjusted for maximum ice pickiness - something that some people like for certain things.


    One of my strats has the Fender Custom Shop Fat Fifties pickups and those are really "fat" and deep, thick sounding; nothing thin or ice picky about them. I dig playing this strat, sss. The Fat Fifties are on of my favorite strat pickups, but the bright Texas Specials are also something I can definitely appreciate.


    Like you, I think I could find a place for that Blackstar one watt "metal" combo that you have. I like that ultra high gain sound sometimes, for what it is.


    My Blackstar HT5-RH rig is one of the best sounding "stay at home" amps I have ever played, and it would be excellent for small gigs as well, parties, etc. It gets very relatively loud. The overdrive sound on it is really something I can dig. No overdrive or distortion pedal is needed for what I play. I like an amp that can stand on its own when it comes to a real good overdrive sound.


    Good luck with your amp.
     
  10. bluesky6

    bluesky6 TDPRI Member

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    @stormjh1, I've a Pathfinder 15 and I would say that swapping speakers on the HT1 is just as easy: unscrew a bunch of screws including the rear ones holding the handle, and the back with the amp chassis just pops out. Then you have all the room in the world to swap out the speaker.

    The only irritant I found was that the speaker wires are a little short. The good thing is that the amp chassis is super light (lighter than the Pathfinder with all that wood), so you can hold it in one hand while unplugging the speaker wires.

    The Jensen C8R is, IMHO, the perfect speaker for the amp, especially if you're looking for the zztop tone (smart dressed man intro etc). Perfectly matched for high output single coils or dual rails. With a full size humbucker, you'll probably even want to turn down the gain. With milder output single coils, I had great results with a clean boost pedal which kicks the amp into a very lively overdrive without the metal fuzz. All this on the "clean" channel of the amp. I overcame the lack of a proper tone control by using that of the guitar. Which is not obvious in itself because most standard Strat wirings do not include tone controls for the bridge pu...

    All in all, I'm pretty happy with the amp: $169 from MF or GC, $38 for the speaker, $20 for the TAD 7025. Which gives me the equivalent, at lower volumes, of my JCA20HV plus a Vintage 30 cab.
     
  11. StormJH1

    StormJH1 Tele-Holic

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    Great stuff, thanks to both of you! Perhaps I should just leave it as is and try to acquire/build an extension cabinet some day to use with multiple amps. And yes, I hear the Swamp Thing is an absolute beast of a speaker!
     
  12. Dismalhead

    Dismalhead Poster Extraordinaire

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    Hey guys,

    I posted the other day in the general amp forum asking about a two-channel clean/high gain combo amp in the 15 - 30 watt range for $500 or less. My only responses were to buy a used Mesa Boogie. Well, most used Boogie combos seem to run $750 and up, at least in my area.

    One of the amps I came across that seems to have lots of positive reviews is the Blackstar HT 20 Studio Combo. There's a guy in my area with a used one for $300. Any comments and things to look out for on this amp are appreciated. Concerned about the quality of the high gain; quality of the clean channel; maintenance issues; any background hisses, hums, pops, or fizziness?

    It will serve as my high gain studio amp as well as being taken to the occasional small gig.

    Thanks!
     
  13. Flash1909

    Flash1909 Tele-Meister

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    Yea just bought the same amp
    but my Question is do I leave standby On or Off using headphones?
    Cabs seems to be out of [email protected] Sweetwater
     
  14. Flash1909

    Flash1909 Tele-Meister

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    nevermind figured it out. Off
     
  15. TurboStang

    TurboStang Tele-Meister

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    Joined the club today.

    Was looking for something a tad bit more portable than my Egnater Renegade & Tourmaster cab that offered good headroom, tonal versatility, and a lead boost...so I settled on the Blackstar HT Stage 60. Was originally looking at the Soloist do to it's smaller size, but got what I felt was a good deal on a new Stage 60 and figured I'd push a little more air with the 2x12.

    I've got a gig Saturday, but will probably wait until I've spent a little time with it before dragging it out to shows. Looking forward to it though.
     
  16. sgguitarzz

    sgguitarzz TDPRI Member

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    I picked up a Stage 60 a few weeks back and have my first gig with it tomorrow night. I became interested after seeing a band using an HT 40 that sounded great. I did some reading and then found the HT 40 and Stage 60 at my local GC. I went back several times to be sure playing with humbuckers and single coils. I ended up with the Stage 60 because I liked having the 3 channels and I thought it just sounded bigger. I love the clean channel. Of course it is crazy heavy but if I get the sound I like it will be worth it. It was also on sale for a great price.
     
  17. fatcat

    fatcat Friend of Leo's

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    I may have a chance to do some trading and pick up a ht studio 20 head really cheap.

    Is it too loud for home use? I was looking at the ht5 before this.

    For comparison; I was going to run it in stereo with an Orange Tiny Terror.
     
    Last edited: Oct 21, 2015
  18. cbh5150

    cbh5150 Tele-Meister

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    Semi necro-post,but I picked up one of these last week. Was wondering if the Jensen puts out a bit more volume than the stock speaker; also, anyone try the Eminence 820h?
     
  19. fatcat

    fatcat Friend of Leo's

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    Anyone play with a ht5 2x10.. I found a used limited edition cream/white one I'm interested in.
     
  20. fatcat

    fatcat Friend of Leo's

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    This is what I might get for Christmas. Anyone have one?
     

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