Small amp to cover jazz to classic rock...

Moonrider

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Currently I have an Epiphone Valve Junior, V3 that I modded the resistors on and re-tubed with NOS glass, I'm not enjoying the EL84 characteristics of the Valve Junior. I have been a lifelong Fender guy, until I stopped playing out. The 6V6 sound works for me for its warmth and tonal spectrum.

The Valve Junior is going up for sale as soon as I sort this out.

Any thoughts/experiences to share?
Before selling the Valve jr. try swapping the 12ax7 for a 12ay7 or 12at7. The lower gain preamp tube takes a lot of the gnarlyness out of it's sound.
 

turfdoc

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If you dont go Marshall or Fender, see if you can find second hand decent, solid state=Roland Jazz Chorus; valve=Peavey Classic 30. Both can be found at very reasonable cost. I'd recommend you pay close attention as to what speakers are in the amp, as a lot of the 'flavor' of the amp cooks there.
 

39martind18

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At least from what I'm seeing here, no one has mentioned a Tone Master Deluxe Reverb. I own one, among a vintage Vibrolux Reverb, and a '69 Deluxe Reverb. The TMDR gets more than its fair share of play for several reasons: there's the weight factor, of course; sounds are typically DR Fender, meaning that a broad palette is available, with a little EQ tweaking, jazz sounds are definitely available and useable. For smaller, quieter gigs, the power scaling knob on the back panel allows the power setting to be reduced from 22 to 12, 5, 1 and .5 watts. I've used the 12- and 5-watt settings to gig, and they work and sound great. The lower settings are fine for practice late at night, but to get any volume, they break up, albeit musically. I play several "jazz" guitars through the TMDR, including a Heritage H-550, D'Angelico Excel SS and an Epiphone Sheraton 1964 Reissue. Lotsa jazz tone from these guitars through the TMDR!
 
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Jazzcaster21

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I'm moving into new territory musically, and along with a Tele and a Duo-sonic, I picked up a Epiphone Emperor Regent, with a Johnny Smith pickup, to explore some silkier genres and jazz/fusion. Typically I've played Blues and Classic Rock, but now I'm older and want to expand into some new sounds.

I'm considering a couple small amps to cover the wide range I'm looking for. A few options I considered are; Tweed 5F2a, Roland JC 22, and Swart AST Jr.

I'm thinking 5W max for tube, and 20-30W if solid state. Looking for a simple circuit if going with tubes. I've only considered the Roland JC, because I am so impressed with the Micro Cube, but it still lacks some of the warmth for jazzier tones.

Currently I have an Epiphone Valve Junior, V3 that I modded the resistors on and re-tubed with NOS glass, and a Micro Cube brain that I installed in a larger cabinet with a Jensen P10r, and an extension cab with another P10r, to create a 2X10, 4 ohm load and wider spread. I'm keeping the MC, but still need a little more power for jamming. I'm not enjoying the EL84 characteristics of the Valve Junior. I have been a lifelong Fender guy, until I stopped playing out. The 6V6 sound works for me for its warmth and tonal spectrum.

The Valve Junior is going up for sale as soon as I sort this out. I'm leaning toward the Swart, because of the onboard reverb, but it's double the cost of the other contenders.

Any thoughts/experiences to share?
Vintage Sound 15 or 20 would be my suggestion. I got a VSA 20 to replace my Mesa Boogie F50 a few months ago, and now I use it on (most) all my gigs, which are either jazz or country. It sounds great with both my Telecaster and Heritage 535. It's very versatile and the craftsmanship is top notch.

It's a great little amp and the reverb with the dwell knob is excellent. You can find them used for a decent price on Reverb too, but it may take a while. They are also cheaper new than some of the other boutique amps out there.
 

JamesAM

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5e3 clone (set to 3 for jazz with your guitar's volume rolled off to 9, amp tone at about 5.5, guitar tone at 5ish. for classic rock, crank it to 10/12. for reference, see the classic black crowes on conan video that's on here all the time)
catalinbread topanga set with dwell and mixno higher than 10 oclock (pick a reverb - lage uses a bluesky)
if you're using an archtop, yuo'll need to use a light touch and the low power input. if youre using a tele, input 1 and use a heavy pick.

Alternatively:

PRRI/DRRI or tonemaster
tube screamer (for classic rock)
guitar

hidden secret: i love the clean tones of a marshall 18w with a tele for jazz. it is kind of honky but in a good way. non-tremolo channel with the volume no higher than 2 and the tone rolled back also.
 
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Supertwang

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Indiana
I'm moving into new territory musically, and along with a Tele and a Duo-sonic, I picked up a Epiphone Emperor Regent, with a Johnny Smith pickup, to explore some silkier genres and jazz/fusion. Typically I've played Blues and Classic Rock, but now I'm older and want to expand into some new sounds.

I'm considering a couple small amps to cover the wide range I'm looking for. A few options I considered are; Tweed 5F2a, Roland JC 22, and Swart AST Jr.

I'm thinking 5W max for tube, and 20-30W if solid state. Looking for a simple circuit if going with tubes. I've only considered the Roland JC, because I am so impressed with the Micro Cube, but it still lacks some of the warmth for jazzier tones.

Currently I have an Epiphone Valve Junior, V3 that I modded the resistors on and re-tubed with NOS glass, and a Micro Cube brain that I installed in a larger cabinet with a Jensen P10r, and an extension cab with another P10r, to create a 2X10, 4 ohm load and wider spread. I'm keeping the MC, but still need a little more power for jamming. I'm not enjoying the EL84 characteristics of the Valve Junior. I have been a lifelong Fender guy, until I stopped playing out. The 6V6 sound works for me for its warmth and tonal spectrum.

The Valve Junior is going up for sale as soon as I sort this out. I'm leaning toward the Swart, because of the onboard reverb, but it's double the cost of the other contenders.

Any thoughts/experiences to share?
IMHO, After exploring all the small SE 5 watt amps,…5 watts of tube power isn’t enough CLEAN headroom for me indoors. However, 10 watts of clean tube power is enough for me. So if you go 5f2a route I’d build it with a 6L6/el34 instead of 6V6/el84 and buy the larger iron to suite. I’d also figure out a triode/pentode switch because an overdriven triode sounds really cool
 

dspellman1

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I'm moving into new territory musically, and along with a Tele and a Duo-sonic, I picked up a Epiphone Emperor Regent, with a Johnny Smith pickup, to explore some silkier genres and jazz/fusion. I'm not enjoying the EL84 characteristics of the Valve Junior. I have been a lifelong Fender guy, until I stopped playing out. The 6V6 sound works for me for its warmth and tonal spectrum.

The Valve Junior is going up for sale as soon as I sort this out. I'm leaning toward the Swart, because of the onboard reverb, but it's double the cost of the other contenders.

Any thoughts/experiences to share?
I have two Valve Juniors: One is stock, the other has the Mercury Magnetics mod. This mod was stupid expensive (given the cost of the base amp), but swapped out the transformers and added a choke and an octet socket for a 6V6. You can use the EL84, the 6V6, or both together. The difference was sort of stunning, and the modified amp keeps getting borrowed for recording.

One of my favorite amps for what you're doing is a modified Carvin Belair. It's a 2x12 open back 50W EL84 amp with a built-in reverb (original models have a spring box, newer models had a digital reverb). I know 50W sounds like a lot for an in-house tube amp, but it's not. The amp has gorgeous cleans, in some respects better than a Fender. There's a SOAK (gain) channel that was designed by Allan Holdsworth, and for me it was a bit too legato-oriented. For what you're doing, probably perfect. I had the amp's tone stack changed, a second "presence" (actually negative feedback) added, etc. (see "Hasserl Mods" for details), and it now sounds like a vintage Marshall, but with more gain than any vintage Marshall ever had. But the unmodified amp (most have a faux tweed tolex and oxblood grill cloth) is near perfect for jazz/fusion, and I have an old Gibson Super 400 and an L5S that just loved it for that. You can find these for around $300-350 for a crispy clean one in the used market. BTW, the digital reverb on the newer ones may just be better sounding than the spring box.
 

schmee

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I'm thinking Princeton Reverb for this.
If you want SS, then there are quite a few, but maybe a Roland Jazz Chorus for reliability. 22 or 40 watt.
 

TeleNation

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Apr 25, 2013
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Homestead
I'm moving into new territory musically, and along with a Tele and a Duo-sonic, I picked up a Epiphone Emperor Regent, with a Johnny Smith pickup, to explore some silkier genres and jazz/fusion. Typically I've played Blues and Classic Rock, but now I'm older and want to expand into some new sounds.

I'm considering a couple small amps to cover the wide range I'm looking for. A few options I considered are; Tweed 5F2a, Roland JC 22, and Swart AST Jr.

I'm thinking 5W max for tube, and 20-30W if solid state. Looking for a simple circuit if going with tubes. I've only considered the Roland JC, because I am so impressed with the Micro Cube, but it still lacks some of the warmth for jazzier tones.

Currently I have an Epiphone Valve Junior, V3 that I modded the resistors on and re-tubed with NOS glass, and a Micro Cube brain that I installed in a larger cabinet with a Jensen P10r, and an extension cab with another P10r, to create a 2X10, 4 ohm load and wider spread. I'm keeping the MC, but still need a little more power for jamming. I'm not enjoying the EL84 characteristics of the Valve Junior. I have been a lifelong Fender guy, until I stopped playing out. The 6V6 sound works for me for its warmth and tonal spectrum.

The Valve Junior is going up for sale as soon as I sort this out. I'm leaning toward the Swart, because of the onboard reverb, but it's double the cost of the other contenders.

Any thoughts/experiences to share?
I've enjoyed playing through my Marshall Class 5 combo. A good friend found one that needed TLC. He rebuilt it and gave it to me. They are a little pricey but a good, solid amp. (No frills, but that's what my stomp boxes are for!) I played several genres of music: country, Gospel, rock, Latin... I have a Musician's Friend Amp Stand and put a Sennheiser e609 over the front. A decent sound tech can work with that. It's fairly light and small - good for gigging. Mainly I play the Tele and Epiphone Dot (ES335 style) so I've used Single-pole and hum bucker guitars through it.
 

iowa

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Corn Country
DV Mark has several "jazz" offerings. I have the Micro 60 Jazz head driving two DV Mark cabs (a 1x12 and a 2x8). Mega cleans and the added benefit is it takes pedals well, so it really knows no boundaries. ((Similarly, my Quilter 201 does great cleans)). Happy Hunting.
I have a ToneMaster Deluxe Reverb at home, but prefer the DV Mark Little Jazz for the tones you are seeking. While it has reverb, I use a Nocturne El Pescador for reverb as well as a light edge of breakup OD. A mid hump OD pedal ( TS or Dumble style) will give you the fusiony tones. I use a tele and a 70's Ibanez hollow body for jazz.
 

19thAveTone

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I think you'd love a Carr tube amplifier - either the Rambler, Mercury, Super Bee, or Sportsman. I had a 12" PRRI - loved it, till I compared it to the Rambler. The headroom, low end, reverb, tremolo - were all SO much better. If you can find one to try, please do.
 

Picknfingers

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Evansville, IN
If you're like me, there's a huge difference between what you want vs. what you need. I'd want a dedicated jazz amp that has a good track record and use by the jazz players I admire. Something that makes a statement and says, "I'm serious about jazz." Usually, that means I'd spend a lot of money for an amp I'd rarely play through. But I'd have it when the urge struck. If you have the money, that's not such a bad thing.

What I really need is probably an amp I already own that could be dialed in pretty close, to the sound I think is a jazz tone, if I spent the time tweaking settings.

I've been very pleasantly surprised by the varied tones I get from a 100 watt Boss Katana. I usually get pleasing jazz tones by setting the bass and middle at 2 o'clock, the treble about 10 o'clock, with the the output on the .5 watt setting. Use the gain setting to dial in a little breakup at whatever volume you want the master volume at. Works for me to do the rest from the guitar. That said, it doesn't totally cure GAS for a dedicated jazz amp.
 

Steebz Khuan

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Belgium
Another vote for Quilter. I've been using the Superblock US for a couple of months and I dig it, sounds great and it's super convenient, you can hook it up to any cab and you can go direct out. I've owned a couple of handwired Voxes (all sizes), an old Geloso tweed deluxe and a Fender DRRI, and at home for the quiet hours I've played through the Katana, but since the Quilter arrived it's all I've been using. Last gig, had the other band members not insisted on me using the DRRI and a deluxe tweed for cosmetic purposes, I'd 've been more than happy to use the little Quilter and a pedal or two.
 

Zoot Zoot

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UK
LANEY LC15 or LANEY CUB 12
- the small Laney amps give a beautiful clean sound, better than the Fender Champ ;)
 

Maguchi

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Jun 16, 2019
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Lalaland
I'm moving into new territory musically, and along with a Tele and a Duo-sonic, I picked up a Epiphone Emperor Regent, with a Johnny Smith pickup, to explore some silkier genres and jazz/fusion. Typically I've played Blues and Classic Rock, but now I'm older and want to expand into some new sounds.

I'm considering a couple small amps to cover the wide range I'm looking for. A few options I considered are; Tweed 5F2a, Roland JC 22, and Swart AST Jr.

I'm thinking 5W max for tube, and 20-30W if solid state. Looking for a simple circuit if going with tubes. I've only considered the Roland JC, because I am so impressed with the Micro Cube, but it still lacks some of the warmth for jazzier tones.

Currently I have an Epiphone Valve Junior, V3 that I modded the resistors on and re-tubed with NOS glass, and a Micro Cube brain that I installed in a larger cabinet with a Jensen P10r, and an extension cab with another P10r, to create a 2X10, 4 ohm load and wider spread. I'm keeping the MC, but still need a little more power for jamming. I'm not enjoying the EL84 characteristics of the Valve Junior. I have been a lifelong Fender guy, until I stopped playing out. The 6V6 sound works for me for its warmth and tonal spectrum.

The Valve Junior is going up for sale as soon as I sort this out. I'm leaning toward the Swart, because of the onboard reverb, but it's double the cost of the other contenders.

Any thoughts/experiences to share?
^^^Ditto on the Tweed 5F2A and the Swart. Don't have no experience with the JC-22 though. I have a Tweed 5 watt Fender Champ reissue and a Tweed 12-15 watt Fender Deluxe reissue and those are great for jazz, blues and classic rock. The Tweed 5F2A Princeton should fall right in the middle between those 2 amps so should fit your requirements. Also take a look at Fender's new '68 Silverface reissue line. I have a Silverface Fender Vibrochamp reissue with vibrato and reverb and it's a fantastic sounding amp as well.

20210911_205421.jpg
20210920_173558.jpg
 

Martinoils

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Jul 3, 2014
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Tucson, Arizona
I'm moving into new territory musically, and along with a Tele and a Duo-sonic, I picked up a Epiphone Emperor Regent, with a Johnny Smith pickup, to explore some silkier genres and jazz/fusion. Typically I've played Blues and Classic Rock, but now I'm older and want to expand into some new sounds.

I'm considering a couple small amps to cover the wide range I'm looking for. A few options I considered are; Tweed 5F2a, Roland JC 22, and Swart AST Jr.

I'm thinking 5W max for tube, and 20-30W if solid state. Looking for a simple circuit if going with tubes. I've only considered the Roland JC, because I am so impressed with the Micro Cube, but it still lacks some of the warmth for jazzier tones.

Currently I have an Epiphone Valve Junior, V3 that I modded the resistors on and re-tubed with NOS glass, and a Micro Cube brain that I installed in a larger cabinet with a Jensen P10r, and an extension cab with another P10r, to create a 2X10, 4 ohm load and wider spread. I'm keeping the MC, but still need a little more power for jamming. I'm not enjoying the EL84 characteristics of the Valve Junior. I have been a lifelong Fender guy, until I stopped playing out. The 6V6 sound works for me for its warmth and tonal spectrum.

The Valve Junior is going up for sale as soon as I sort this out. I'm leaning toward the Swart, because of the onboard reverb, but it's double the cost of the other contenders.

Any thoughts/experiences to share?
You can’t go wrong with the Swart. It’s more expensive but it’s a hand built jewel that you’ll probably keep for a long long time.
The tones are classic
 




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