Most Versatile Tube amp (5-20W)?

Discussion in 'Amp Central Station' started by kmckenna45, Sep 10, 2021.

  1. kmckenna45

    kmckenna45 TDPRI Member

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    I have a Monoprice 611815 Stageright amp. What a great little amp! I feel lucky to have it. For $250 - it was a great bargain. I upgraded the Reverb tank. Not sure it really made much of a difference - and as others have said, the Gain knob is not great.

    I'm not a great fan of pedals - I don't want to invest in expensive pedals, and I find the cheap ones to be ... cheap. I have a Donner Compression and Donner Delay pedal. They're OK.

    Has anyone found a versatile TUBE amp that includes some of the basic effects built in? I know the Fender Champion XP has a lot, but it's all on the DSP side, not the Tube side.

    Ideally, I'd like the following on the AMP:
    Delay
    Reverb
    Distortion
    Compression

    I'm sure there are technical reasons why these can't be on a Tube amp, but I figured I'd ask the great minds out there for their input.

    I want to stay all tube, with a Fender/gangly sound - and I'd make an investment if I could find it. Mostly for small indoor playing - I don't perform with my amp.

    Any ideas? Any reasons why my "ask" is technically impossible?

    Thanks.
     
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  2. JL_LI

    JL_LI Poster Extraordinaire

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    I use a Mesa Boogie Express 5:25 mostly on the 5 watt setting. I use a Fender Mirror Image delay and like it so much that I’ve stopped using reverb. There are two differently voiced high gain channels but I keep one low gain channel set for single coils and one for humbuckers. I get crunch by digging in. My only other pedal is a BOSS EQ-200 which I use to balance strings and occasionally for a little clean boost.
     
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2021
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  3. northernguitar

    northernguitar Friend of Leo's

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    I dunno...unless one is dropping the big bucks, I've found amps with onboard fx usually have lame sounding effects.
     
  4. NoTeleBob

    NoTeleBob Friend of Leo's

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    About to post the same. They also often have shortcomings on using multiple effects at once. A Multi-pedal through an SS amp will give you better sounds. If you want a tube amp, you need pedals (maybe aside from Reverb and Trem).
     
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  5. davidchagrin

    davidchagrin Tele-Afflicted

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    I've never really associated valve amps with versatility. If you want an amp with built-in effects, digital is the way to go.
     
  6. nojazzhere

    nojazzhere Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    Something you might consider.....why own a good (or even great) sounding tube amp, and then muck it up with effects?
    I've mentioned here before, I used to play with another guitarist. He owned wonderful guitars, (Goldtop LP with P-90's, Telecaster, Strat, etc) and amps that I drooled over. (AC30, AC15, AC10) and then loaded his sound with so many effects he coulda been playing a kazoo through a Crate. I played effects very sparingly, and rarely more than one at a time.....and he couldn't understand why people would compliment me on my playing, and not him. (he was a decent guitarist) It was simply because they could HEAR my guitar and playing.
    It's also convenient to use different "brands" of effects. Your Donner pedals are pretty good (I own a couple) but I don't want to be limited to just what an amp maker builds in. Best wishes.....;)
     
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  7. KC

    KC Friend of Leo's

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    I'm gonna go out on a limb here & say that you don't want an amp at all. I feel like a good amp modeler (Fractal FM3 is what I have) will give you all the sounds you want in one box, including the Fender / gangly sound.

    I'm not aware of any tube amp that has builtin effects past verb and trem except that Princeton Recording amp they made a few years ago, which had some kind of dirt and compression builtin IIRC. They had kind of a bad reputation, didn't sound great and they broke, again IIRC. If you want to go the traditional route, get yourself a Princeton Reverb RI and some decent pedals. But this will be more expensive and less versatile than the modeler.
     
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  8. Frodebro

    Frodebro Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    The problem in your bandmate's case was not the effects, but rather the overuse of them. I run a BOSS GT-1000 in 4CM with a Mesa Triple Crown, and have access to just about every effect you could possibly want. However, I only have either a delay or reverb as an "always on", and will occasionally use an overdrive, phaser, flanger, or whatever depending on what I'm after, but never enough of anything to muck up the sound of the amp itself. The GT-1000 also switches channels on the Mesa via MIDI.
     
  9. nojazzhere

    nojazzhere Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    Actually, the problem in my bandmate's case was in the bandmate......but everything else you said was accurate. ;)
     
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  10. printer2

    printer2 Poster Extraordinaire

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    Sure, you could have it, the delay might have to be SS though. But you probably do not want to pay for a one-of amp. After all, you do not want to buy expensive pedals but complain cheap pedals are cheap.
     
  11. kmckenna45

    kmckenna45 TDPRI Member

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    And your point is…?
     
  12. Frodebro

    Frodebro Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    What you're looking for doesn't exist. You can go digital with a Katana or Mustang and get all of the effects you want, but in the tube format the only real options you'll find over-the-counter are reverb, tremolo, and some amps have power scaling, and/or integral load boxes with direct outs, but not really anything out there with other effects (outside of the hybrids, such as the Champ XD which has a fully digital preamp section).
     
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  13. Fuelish

    Fuelish Tele-Afflicted

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    My Tweaker 15 head is quite versatile for me, but my Fender Rumble SS 25 sounds really nice through my multi-fx unit, clean amp for a guitar
     
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  14. printer2

    printer2 Poster Extraordinaire

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    You have an amp that may cost $250. You want a tube amp that does delay, compression, reverb, distortion. So the amp is a mini Marshall. go the custom build rout and you are looking at maybe $700 for someone to build it for you, add reverb, I will go cheap and say add $150. You want tube compression, add $200. Custom chassis and cabinet, add a couple hundred. And that is if someone would want to tackle that for you.
     
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  15. Billy3

    Billy3 Tele-Holic

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    All of your needs are going to be satisfied with pedals and a tube amp with good cleans. I don't think there is a tube amp that exists with what you're wanting. I used to not really be into pedals myself, but now I realize there is no way to get what you want without them. So, start digging your rabbit hole with a nice shovel $$$,
    or settle down with a digital amp. But I think we can all agree, there is a huge difference between the two. Good or bad depending on your taste.
     
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  16. King Fan

    King Fan Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

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    Did you mean this to sound snarky? His reply made perfect sense.
     
    Last edited: Sep 10, 2021
  17. Chiogtr4x

    Chiogtr4x Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    It just seems like a Princeton Reverb, a Deluxe Reverb, maybe a Marshall w/ real tube Reverb/ Tremolo( or builds there of...) gets OP 90% of the way there- all tube signal and that includes Reverb and Tremolo.

    Add a few OD/distortion pedals and other effects and you're good!

    *I know this is what most of us do, or have done, but that's my point- you craft your own sound around 'the heart' of a great tube amp!
     
  18. Midgetje94

    Midgetje94 Tele-Afflicted

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    Fwiw he’s right. Back in the metal days I had the line 6 bogner spider valve. Tube driven with various programmable effects. Gets the job done. But yea. You’re not gonna get that true tube. For what you’re saying I’d recommend a katana.

    but realistically get a tube amp you like the clean tone, and pickup used pedals as you go.
     
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  19. DougM

    DougM Poster Extraordinaire

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    There's absolutely no reason that a tube amp couldn't have digital effects onboard, other than the fact that guitar players are morons who are resistant to any innovation, and anything that was designed after there was fire
     
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  20. VintageSG

    VintageSG Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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