Marshall DSL40c to Ultimate Amp?

Discussion in 'Glowing Bottle Tube Amp Forum' started by CrazyDrew6, Jun 11, 2017.

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  1. Veltek

    Veltek Tele-Holic

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    Egnater has some terrible reliability issues though. As well as their speaker choice/cabinet builds sound terrible.

    The tweaker how ever sounds great if you dont get a lemon!
     
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  2. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    I would consider swapping a pair of US made 6ca7 power tubes to "harden up the tone a bit", and then use the preamp control to get softer sounds.
    But the rest of the mods are too involved for the value of the amp compared to simply selling it and buying something closer to what you want, if there is such an amp.
    The DL40c is probably pretty close in the big picture, with cranked clean channel for Tweedier sounds and also Plexi like sounds on tap.

    It would be easier to build from scratch than to gut a chassis.
     
  3. JD0x0

    JD0x0 Poster Extraordinaire

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    I'd get rid of the DSL40. I hear nothing but complaints about them, when I come across people who've used them. There's a lot of great amps with plenty of voicing options out there. I find the D-style amps to be extremely versatile, personally, especially for the music styles the OP mentioned. The voicing switches aren't specifically made to sound like competitors amps, but they will change the tone drastically. The mid switch on with the EQ set right will easily get into tweed/marshall territory, for example. Set the mids 'scooped' and you can dial in a Blackface Fender tone. It has EQ bypass from the factory, and can have NFB and 'sag' switches added, if desired...

    The ceriatone models are very reasonably priced for hand wired amps. Being handwired they will be easier to mod/repair(the DSL40 is a cheap PCB- PITA to work on, IMO) and should be more reliable, as well..
     
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  4. Guitarteach

    Guitarteach Poster Extraordinaire

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    +1 on putting an EQ in the fx loop.
     
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  5. archetype

    archetype Fiend of Leo's

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    It has a dirty tone and a clean tone. Accept that and believe that the rest of it is simply how you play. If you chase "perfect for the genre" your head will explode. We'll lament your passing, but you won't be here to inform us of your progress.

    You're a player with a guitar and an amp that's versatile enough. Just get up there and play.
     
    Last edited: Jun 12, 2017
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  6. Hawk8789

    Hawk8789 TDPRI Member

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    The DSL40C is the most versatile amp I own. It has a nice clean, any level of gain you could ever want, and it takes pedals well.
     
  7. AJBaker

    AJBaker Friend of Leo's

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    I wouldn't recommend you do those mods you mention. Some are feasible (neg. feedback loop removal), others complicated (that amp has two eq sections I believe), others practically impossible (adding a valve rectifier basically means building a new amp almost from scratch).

    The only circuit board mod I'd recommend is removing the bright cap on the two volume pots. Change the speaker if you want, but a creamback is pretty good. Power tube changes are optional, but won't make a huge difference.

    That amp is already fairly good, especially on the crunch channel and can do most of what you need. The mods you're talking about will cost more than what you paid for the amp and make it impossible to resell later once you want to move on to something else.
     
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2017
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  8. Anode100

    Anode100 Friend of Leo's

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    +2!
     
  9. LiteAsh

    LiteAsh Tele-Meister

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    +3
     
  10. Fenderflame

    Fenderflame Tele-Holic

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    There's a good explanation here about why an EQ pedal is a good idea:

     
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  11. kookaburra

    kookaburra Tele-Afflicted

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    Although I've used pedals to good effect, I do understand what you're saying about how they change the sound.

    However, some pedals work better with certain amps than others. I saw a local band play recently where the guitarist used a DSL 40 1x12 combo. Mostly the harder end of classic rock. He used a Fulltone OCD, and it really sounded great with that combo. It had a very classic Marshall sound.

    The OCD was the standard model.
     
  12. CrazyDrew6

    CrazyDrew6 TDPRI Member

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    Thanks for the info. I thought through some things- if I crank the amp enough (ultra gain, lead 2, gain 8-10) I can make the amp sag, and I like that. So, would replacing some tubes with a 12ay7 and a 12at7 suck out some of the sag I love, or would it give me tweedy cleans? Also, I do plan to get a mxr m108, and use it as a boost, to add clarity and change amps, so would pushing the treble a bit un-muddy my sound, or should I get 6ca7s? That's my main real issue with the DSL40C. It gets muddy. What I think I want- high Marshall gain with clarity and sag if wanted, tight Fender cleans and cranked Fender dirt, with vox presence. Just in case this makes a difference, I usually play with my eq at T: 10 M: 10 B:6 Presence: 10 Resonance: 0.

    Thanks for putting up with my noobyness!
     
  13. CrazyDrew6

    CrazyDrew6 TDPRI Member

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    Also, dirt pedals don't speak to me because I think they kill presence. I love plexi sounds, fender tweeds and voxes because they are present.
     
  14. Fenderflame

    Fenderflame Tele-Holic

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    Hey Drew. The tone settings you reference above are the tone controls on the front of the amp. Is this correct? If so is important to note that these are pre-amp tone controls. Putting the EQ in the FX loop will have a completely different effect. It shapes the power section of the amp. For $40 you will get lots of time shaping and selective frequency boosting that may deliver exactly what you are after without needing around with valves and speakers which can be a bit hit and miss.

    Hope this helps.
     
  15. CrazyDrew6

    CrazyDrew6 TDPRI Member

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    That puts things in perspective, thanks. Those are my front panel controls, yes.
     
  16. Middleman

    Middleman Friend of Leo's

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    Couple of comments, there may be something wrong with your amp. My DSL40 is never muddy. Also when you run all of the amp EQ at 10, your basically asking for an overdriven preamp section which equates to less headroom, probably another source of muddiness and lack of clarity. Go the opposite direction i.e. mids scooped more like 3 or 4, treble max of 5 or 6 depending on the guitar, bass 5. Now the preamp is not affecting the overall sound as much and you can push the volume up and try and get some sag out of the power section of the amp. At some point the preamp section breaks down sonically and that may be a good or bad thing depending on your taste but you are asking for distortion across the spectrum with the settings on 10. Now you can dime a Marshall head because those are 50+ watt amps and there is payback tonally but the DSL40c doesn't operate in the same way.
     
  17. VintageSG

    VintageSG Friend of Leo's Ad Free Member

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    Finesse those tone controls!
    Start with all the tone controls on 0, twang away on an open E and turn the bass knob up until a big change can be heard. Make a mental note of that position. Keep turning it up until no more change is detected and it goes mushy/loses clarity/breaks up a bit. Make a mental note of that too.
    Switch to the G ( or D, your call ) and do the same with the mids.
    Switch to the e, maybe fret it around the 5th or 7th fret and tweak the treble.
    You now know the range of your tone controls. Running them flat out rarely gets a good sound. Somewhere in the range you'll find a good sound, I promise. To make big EQ changes now, refer to 'putting an EQ pedal in the FX loop'. By not running the tone controls so high, you'll probably find the presence control can come into play too.
    To get the power supply saggy, you'll need to run the master up fairly high, then bring the pre-amp gain up to suit. Usually, it won't get much louder at 10 than it is at ( say ) 8, just compresses more, seems louder and loses some dynamics. Diode rectifiers don't sag, you're reliant on the charge time of the caps, and that's pretty fast. Only by running the power amp section hard can you approach sag.
    The 12AT7 makes a pretty poor pre-amp valve, in my experience. It does make a good driver valve though. You may, or may not, hear a difference if you replace the phase inverter with one. The difference I found only comes in when the amp is being driven hard. Try it. You'll only be a few dollars out.
    A 12AY7 makes a good V1. You'll still get the full on gain with the knob wound round to 11, but you'll get a broader sweep on the knob. I find they sound 'sweeter' too, less bitey. That's channel 1 taken care of. Leave V2 and V3 as 12AX7.
    Don't be worried about overdrive pedals. A lot of users get them bass-ackwards and wind the gain up. Keep the gain down to unity, or close, and wind the level up instead. Use it more to push the pre-amp valves, you may like the sound. Be aware that if you up the level too high, any pedals that follow it may have their input stages driven in to clipping. Keep delays/modulations etc in the FX loop.

    Worth a read.

    http://www.guitaramplifierblueprinting.com/files/Phaseinverter.pdf

    http://www.aikenamps.com/index.php/what-is-sag
     
  18. DaveKS

    DaveKS Friend of Leo's

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    Sorry but no. Good pedals and knowing how to set them and your amp up and you can actually make your sound better than it's ever been and cover eveverthing your asking for.

    You need to learn about cable capacitance/quality, buffers and how it effects your tone and how when you set it up you have to make adjustments to amps gain levels and eq to take full advantage of them.

    But yes a good eq is one of the most powerful tools you can have at your disposal. And there is vast difference between using a EQ before your amps preamp and in the loop. Nether is better/worse, wrong or right, just different. Here since you don't like pedals, go half rack, this thing will blow your mind.

    [​IMG]

    So will this, but alas, it's a pedal.
    [​IMG]
     
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  19. Owenmoney

    Owenmoney Tele-Afflicted

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    Mesa Express does a pretty good job at both Fender and Marshall sounds
     
  20. gtrjunior

    gtrjunior Tele-Holic

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    Yeah, no doubt there are some amps that can do both. I'm personally not a fan of the Mesa distortion. Don't get me wrong...for rhythm work it they sound huge. But when you take a lead, it just isn't there anymore....
     
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