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Should I spend more than $1k on an amp?

Discussion in 'Amp Central Station' started by Shinrock, Nov 28, 2020.

  1. stormsedge

    stormsedge Friend of Leo's

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    I have the Blackstar HT40 Club...believe it would hold its own in the situations you describe. I purchased it used last Oct for $350. Shortly thereafter, I purchased a Quilter 201...which will also hold its own and two 1x12 cabinets. I forget the price specifics of the Quilter (SDoD) and the cabs (which I bought empty from Seismic), then purchased speakers specifically for the Quilter...but, I have all the above at less than $1K invested...good for just about anything.

    ((Also, the Quilter can be carried as a backup to the Blackstar and run through that speaker if required)). My dollartwoninetyeight. Happy hunting.

    And...welcome!
     
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2020
  2. Tom Grattan

    Tom Grattan TDPRI Member Silver Supporter

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    Well, why not since I'm at the end of the line. In 1976 a friend of mine was going out on tour and was buying a whole bunch of equipment. At that time the Mesa Boogie 12" combo had just come out and was the amp I really wanted but the price was very $$$. I asked my friend if he could slip in an amp that was called, at the time, the poor man's Boogie with the equipment order. It was a MusicMan 100 1x12"RD with the first gen EV speaker. I still have the amp. I'm not playing out as much, 74yrs, but this amp has played countless gigs over the years and except of occasional tune ups, cleaning, tubes etc. the amp had been bullet proof for 44yrs. I also have a Boogie Studio 22 mid 80's modded at Boogie in Petaluma. My 58 Tele though the MM is the best for me. A killer amp but like most tube amps with big magnet speakers it's heavy. The Boogie talks like a souped up Deluxe and it's lighter. My two cents.
     
  3. GibAnn

    GibAnn TDPRI Member

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    At my age of 82yrs & still playing, I have come to realise that the greatest sound is you and your fingers. Any real top-notch Guitarist, Steve Lukather, Eric Clapton, Eddy Van Halen, SRV, could come to your place, plug into your ****ty amp & guitar and Just blow you away. So just be happy with what you have most crowds come to see you.
    Gib /Ann New Zealand
     
  4. jonnyfez

    jonnyfez Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

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    It should come with a truss and a back brace.
     
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  5. Whitebeard

    Whitebeard TDPRI Member

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    Hard to go wrong with a Deluxe Reverb. An original 60's will most likely cost many $$$$. For instance there's a 64 for sale on ebay right now in such great cosmetic condition it's hard to believe it's real for $3,999.00. However a 65 Deluxe Reverb (Reissue) can be had used for $800.00. Good luck.
     
  6. telecastergirl

    telecastergirl NEW MEMBER!

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    I'm with you on this. Best gigging amp ever. Have run Strats and Teles through Vibroluxes for almost 50 years. I've gigged with both my pre-cbs one and my Custom Shop one, when the old one got too valuable to sit around on the sidewalk outside the Viper Room. The old one ('65-66? I can't remember) is out of your price range (mine too!), but the new one (which is kickass but not quite as subtle) can be got used under $1k, I would think.
     
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  7. trackerdan

    trackerdan Tele-Meister Ad Free Member

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    Mesa Boogie. Size it for your more powerful gigs and use wattage selection for the rest. I used a MKIII in my gigging years, switchable between 15W & 60 watts. It was a monster and hard to tame but once you do you'll never look back.
     
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  8. David Keller

    David Keller TDPRI Member

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    play a show where I was able to run a 15-watt tube amp all the way open without being asked to turn down (even when playing clean). I honestly don't think I'll ever need more than 30-40 watts of power. I prefer amp distortion if I can get it, but I have plenty of pedals for tone shaping if I need versatility.

    Having said all that, many highly-regarded and readily-available amps fall under the $1,000 (U.S.) price tag (either new or used): Vox AC30, Hot Rod Deluxe or DRRI, Marshall DSL40, Blackstar HT40, Orange TH30, etc. Knowing my amp will have to remain reliable under standard gig abuse, is there really a reason to spend for me to spend more than a grand on an amp?

    *Tried and own a solid state option. Gun to my head: tubes are just more fun.[/QUOTE]




    Dear Shinrock,

    I have been playing for 40 plus years. Do you know of a first class amp repair guy? Has he/she been working on amps for decades as opposed to years? If so, take a look at Gibson GA-15RX 1x12 combos. Also, look at Trace Elliot Velocette 1x12 combos. These amps are non-import handwired amps with Celestion speakers. The Trace Elliots are made in the UK. A very few of the Gibson versions were made the UK the rest were made in the USA. All good ! I bought a mint Gibson GA-15RV for $550.00. I took it to my amp guy because it was a bit noisy and had to replace a transformer, a switch, and a few tubes. Total bill, about $250.00. My total expenditure, less than $1000.00.
    Regards,
    David Keller











     
  9. David Keller

    David Keller TDPRI Member

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    Dear Shinrock,

    I have been playing for 40 plus years. Do you know of a first class amp repair guy? Has he/she been working on amps for decades as opposed to years? If so, take a look at Gibson GA-15RX 1x12 combos. Also, look at Trace Elliot Velocette 1x12 combos. These amps are non-import handwired amps with Celestion speakers. The Trace Elliots are made in the UK. A very few of the Gibson versions were made the UK the rest were made in the USA. All good ! I bought a mint Gibson GA-15RV for $550.00. I took it to my amp guy because it was a bit noisy and had to replace a transformer, a switch, and a few tubes. Total bill, about $250.00. My total expenditure, less than $1000.00.
    Regards,
    David Keller
     
  10. nortally

    nortally TDPRI Member

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    Great answer. This whole thread is filled with personal preference & nuance. If I needed a touring amp, which I don't, I'd lean towards Peavey for reliability. The amps I constantly window-shop for seem to be

    Marshall Artist
    Orange Rocker
    Mesa Boogie Mark V
    Fender Bassbreaker
     
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  11. RadioFM74

    RadioFM74 Friend of Leo's

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    And welcome! I feel privileged to be the one to say so!

    I have a very close cousin to the Vibrolux: a '64 Tremolux. Those 6L6, 2x10, 30W Fender amps are something special!
     
  12. thestratophile

    thestratophile TDPRI Member

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    Should I spend more than $1k on an amp?
    Yes!
     
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  13. J. Bonkosky

    J. Bonkosky Tele-Meister Silver Supporter

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    Check out a tweed deluxe clone. It may be enough for your situation. The positives are light weight, few tubes, common tubes, and voiced well for live performances. Here is my experience: I played my 5E3 Deluxe clone in a large rehearsal space at bar stage volumes 3 times with a 5 piece band. I used a vintage type telecaster clone with OV pickups. I found the amp had enough volume and cut to get over most all the instruments with my guitar volume full up. I could roll the guitar volume down to get a cleaner rhythm sound. A short slap back delay made it standout more in the mix. You can probably find one for around a grand. Good luck.
     
  14. olddawg2

    olddawg2 TDPRI Member

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    I’m a geezer rocker who has used just about everything gigging since the early 1970s. The last 5 years I’ve been using a Bugera V22. It cost me $249 no tax and free shipping from Sweetwater at the time. It’s plenty loud to the point that I use it with a switchable Weber 50 watt attenuator. I took the badge off. People keep asking me what kind of Botique amp it is. I play next to Mesas, Marshals and stuff all of the time. No need for giant gear anymore. It’s better to keep the stage volume down. If I need more I use an extension cab and/or a mic on it. Choose your pedals carefully. You don’t need to spend a fortune to sound good nowadays, or break your back. Tone is and always has been in the hands. Btw.. I used a Boss Katana that was in a backline setup the other day. I was really impressed. Not tube.. but very close and very scalable.. which is a good thing.
     
  15. soneedaze

    soneedaze TDPRI Member

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    Totally agree as well. A while back, I bought a Mesa Express 5:50. It's been a kickass amp. Never had an issue. Just replace tubes. 5 watt option is super cool

    I also have a Music Man 112RD. It was sitting on an outdoor stage in SW Colorado. Pretty sure it's from 79/80. It looked like hell but I'll be damned if it didn't sound great. I gave the guy 50 bucks, cleaned it up, and it rocks.

    Right now, I'm good with these two amps. Or at least that's what I tell myself on a weekly basis.
     
  16. mmannaxx

    mmannaxx Tele-Meister

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    For last 15 years I have played in a classic rock cover band, so doing a variety of songs but nothing approaching metal. Heaviest song ever was probably “Flirting with Disaster”. I used silver face Deluxe reverb, SF Vibrolux Reverb, SF Princeton Reverb, BF Vibroverb, 5e3 clone, Mesa Boogie 5:25, and a Goodsell Super 17 Mark II.
    Mesa controls too much, gone. Vibroverb too heavy, gone. Vibrolux Reverb too heavy, gone . Deluxe Reverb still a bit too heavy, gone.
    So for last few years I use the PR, the Goodsell, and occasionally the 5e3 clone for gigs. So all are hand wired and seem to be very reliable, but I am careful with my equipment and don’t play out more than 15-20 times per year, mostly in the summer at festivals, music in the parks, etc. not too many bars any more, not worth the hassle for the lower pay they give. I am inclined toward hand wired amps. Smaller hand wired Fenders probably cost around a 1000 today, then may have to spend 2 or 300 more to have it brought up to snuff with an amp tech. So an old Ampeg would probably be a lot cheaper. Not sure how much they weigh but they might be the ticket. Or maybe a vintage Traynor can be found for cheap. So a non pcb amp will certainly be easier for a competent tech to fix but most amp repair won’t be “cheap”. Which will be cheaper in the long run is hard to say but handwired will definitely have greater resale value in the end. I am probably getting near end of my live performing existence. After pandemic, who knows. So I will definitely keep my PR for home use and maybe keep the 5e3 clone at least for a while. So I would say get at least one amp you really like and will want to keep for good. For me it is my Princeton which I have re- housed in a cherry wood cabinet.
     

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  17. MAXXFIELD

    MAXXFIELD Tele-Meister

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    The answer is always yes to buying quality tools you will use and can afford. Key being you will use.
     
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  18. ChicagoFats53

    ChicagoFats53 TDPRI Member

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    Yes you will probably have to if you waNT A GOOD RELIABLE TUBE AMP. Although a used one can be found for less sometimes. I'm thinking Fender, Marshall, Boogie etc.
     
  19. mmannaxx

    mmannaxx Tele-Meister

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    Used to have one of those ( Peavey Bandits)I believe, back in the early 80s. It was a .decnt amp for .solid state. And reliable.
     
  20. Maguchi

    Maguchi Tele-Holic

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    Duplicate
     
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