Blues Cube blues

Discussion in 'Amp Central Station' started by markal, Apr 28, 2021.

  1. markal

    markal Tele-Afflicted

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    I think they’re great but you have to want the tone they offer. As others said, it’s supposedly in the fender tweed family - not as scooped as fender blackface era amps and less headroom (though plenty if you set it right). To me, it is quite similar to the tone of the Fender 68 Custom Deluxe Reverb.

    The power scaling is great. It sounds almost identical at any volume.

    It can be bass-heavy, but the eq is very usable, so I’m able to easily dial it in for neck humbuckers and my tele.

    I have the Artist version, but had the smaller Hot version before. They’re both really good. I tend to prefer it without any tone capsules, but I do have the UBTC.
     
  2. JRapp

    JRapp Tele-Holic

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    Thanks for the responses, fellas. I need to go try one. Cheers!
     
  3. Grateful Ape

    Grateful Ape Tele-Afflicted

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    Yes, absolutely. Be sure to try both inputs, and be aware that the EQ controls are very effective.

    Oh yeah - p s. The dual tone sucks.

    Maybe compare to the Tonemasters? I haven't tried those. Am curious.
     
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  4. archtop_fjk

    archtop_fjk Tele-Holic

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    While I agree that the Dual Tone is not useful, I really love the tremolo and reverb (you can get a very Fenderish drippy reverb at the highest setting). Also, the NY Blues tone capsule gives you a tighter bass and more overdrive than the stock amp.

    Funny story. In the middle of an outdoor gig, my pedalboard (a digitech rp-1000) totally failed and I played the rest of the gig with just the BCA and my guitar. It was fabulous - the overdrive channel gave me a sweet tone and I found I didn’t need those overdrive settings on the rp-1000 after all!
     
  5. SRHmusic

    SRHmusic Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

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    Yeah, I'm curious how the ToneMasters sound, too. And I don't use the dual tone, either on the BCA.

    Note - A lot of people say to use the low input if you run a gain or distortion pedal. (I found the inherent amp distortion is so good I don't bother, though. )
     
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  6. tfarny

    tfarny Poster Extraordinaire

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    Just for folks interested in newer SS amps, the new Quilter Aviator Cub is one to check out too if you can. Different feature set and basic tone than the BC, but I thought it was pretty neat.
     
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  7. Grateful Ape

    Grateful Ape Tele-Afflicted

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    Depends on the tone capsule (or not) and whether you're playing at home or with a band.

    Despite the (great) power scaling/master vol, I found that - like a tube amp - if you get that speaker moving, you need less 'gain help' from pedals.

    I felt that the Sparkle Clean was the least pedal-friendly, but probably a good choice with humbuckers. The Ultimate Blues thus far seems to be the best choice for me in terms of having two (very) usable channels. But I haven't been able to try a NY (which is annoying).

    One thing that baffles me: what exactly are Roland doing with this amp? Are they supporting it? Discontinuing it? What about tone capsules? Very, very hard to find.
     
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  8. markal

    markal Tele-Afflicted

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    Have you tried one? From the demos it sounds very much like blackface fender in all three modes. And I don’t like scooped Fender tones very much.
     
  9. markal

    markal Tele-Afflicted

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    I agree. Not only are they expensive but you can’t find most of them. In the meantime Boss/Roland has released new versions of the Katana and Nextone so it makes me think they’ve given up on the BCs. But maybe the success of the Fender Tonemaster amps will prod Roland to refresh the BC amps.
     
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  10. Grateful Ape

    Grateful Ape Tele-Afflicted

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    A BCA2 with a rotary selector on both the drive and clean to mix and match tone capsule sounds would get my money
     
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  11. ronzhd

    ronzhd Tele-Afflicted Ad Free Member

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    3 words - Blues Cubes Rock!!!!
     
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  12. tfarny

    tfarny Poster Extraordinaire

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    I played one for a little while in a GC last month. There was a Tweed voicing but I was mostly on the Blonde, I can't remember how tweedy it got. But the tone controls had a wide adjustment range. I did think it was designed to be pretty clean overall, which is cool with me.
     
  13. SRHmusic

    SRHmusic Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

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    For me the stock is most versatile. I have a UBTC I'm not using at the moment. The clean channel is great with it, but I find the drive channel isn't as good or as easy to scale relative to the clean. It would be cool to see a new iteration of the amp with easier switching between these.

    The Blues Cube name has been around for years, so hopefully they continue with it. But the tone capsule thing is pretty gimmicky, so hopefully they move toward built in option switching.

    I see the Nextone as another step, but sort of between Katana and Blues Cube. For example it's more programmable, offers tube type switching on the control panel (like Blackstar's ID TVP series), but doesn't have a pine cabinet or as good a speaker according to some reviews. It's less expensive, though.
     
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  14. MatsEriksson

    MatsEriksson Tele-Afflicted

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    This thing beats me too. Now that they have Nextone out which still uses TubeLogic, and a plethora of settings available through editing via USB cable and a software editor program I wonder if it shouldn't be possible to mimick and exactly nail all the Tone Capsules settings in one amp. I know there's this "demo bridge" used only at Roland centers,and for Music Trade Shows where they have that in their booth. So you can stick all of them on top, and then compare them side by side. As it is just a circuitry path they have to pass through, I can't really figure it I why you couldn't do the same with software only in the whole BCA series amps. Since capsules seems to get rarer and rarer and often seems to be of a certain select artist preferences.

    Let's say Eric Johnson Tone Capsule. It's the one that exists in the least numbers of them all. They may have copied his Marhsall Plexi exactly but have forgotten that he connects with X/Y cables into both inputs (I and II) which gives another flavor. Also, prior to this, he's connecting to a Butler Tube Driver PLUS the coloring of the EchoPlex units preamps (solid state) which contributes to his tone a great deal. So there's very little use of that particular Capsule.

    I can't think of that it would be that hard to create some external pedal board, with a thick cable with mulitpins like the old Leslie cables (for organ) that connects underside these amps in the slot where all capsules resides, and have all these capsules ready-to-play at the flick of different on and off switches. Maybe Roland would sue for infringement though...

    I've heard that their Nextones aren't as good as Katanas at the same settings. Nextones are somewhat in between Blues Cubes and Katanas.
     
    Last edited: May 2, 2021
  15. MatsEriksson

    MatsEriksson Tele-Afflicted

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    I don't know which has sold more. Any BC model (BCA, BC stage or else) ? Or Nextone or Katanas? I do not have heard of anyone that has bought or even used their HEAD the 100W Blues Cube amp, where they actually has separate EQ section for the clean channel and dirt channel which is needed anyways, methinks.
     
    Last edited: May 2, 2021
  16. Grateful Ape

    Grateful Ape Tele-Afflicted

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    I'd love to know which genius thought to use the pins as tone capsule connectors. :cool: Total pain.

    For all my criticisms, I think it's a great amp. Flawed, but great.
     
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  17. Blrfl

    Blrfl Tele-Afflicted

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    That's got to be the Katana by a wide margin. They're priced to move but come with some compromises to get to that price point.
     
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  18. NiceTele

    NiceTele Tele-Afflicted

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    A friend has used a BC Stage for a few years and does lots of gigs and loves it. I did an A/B against my TMDR, and the BC is just a totally different vibe- definitely more grainy tweedy than clean blackface. I might just move the TMDR on and grab a BC if I can find one.
     
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  19. Anacharsis

    Anacharsis Tele-Holic

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    I became a Real Blues Cube fan. I now have all three Hot variants (standard, British EL84 modified, BOSS Drive Special), two Tour heads bought used at deep discount, and three tone capsules (Sparkle Clean, Ultimate Blues, and now New York Blues on the way).

    I play the Tours through two 1x12" cabinets - one with a Lil' Texas and one with a Tonkerlite.

    I like them a lot. And I don't play blues. :)
     
    Last edited: May 19, 2021
  20. Grateful Ape

    Grateful Ape Tele-Afflicted

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    Did you manage to sort this out? I had something similar happen yesterday, doing some recording for a friend. Brief and inexplicable volume drop.
     
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