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Discussion in 'Amp Central Station' started by AlbertoMilanese, May 27, 2020.
I love origani...
Yeah, but they're REALLY light!
I never understood the market for these things- "I want to buy a modeling amp with only one model." I get the market for modeling amps, and I get the market for tube amps, but these seem to combine the drawbacks of both and the benefits of neither. But hey, people seem to like 'em. Fair enough, more tube amps for me.
That's well put. But it does make me wonder about just how many amps Fender could sell if they decided to put a quality, full-featured modelling amp in proper/classic BF/SF cosmetics. Put differently, maybe players really want to play modelling amps--they just don't want to look like they're playing modelling amps.
OP, hope your amp saga works out when you get something with more headroom.
Not familiar w/ the amp, I checked out the specs,..
"faithfully modeling the circuitry and 22-watt power output of an original Deluxe tube amp. Using a high-performance 100-watt digital power amp to achieve the headroom and dynamic range of a real vintage Deluxe tube amp"
Those marketing guys deserve a cigar for that mouth of BS.
I’ve been umming and ahhing over the Twin for a while, but I’ve decided for late night home use, no master volume is a limiting factor, even with the attenuator. I understand they want them to perform the same and this is an amp designed for stages, but with modelling you could have your cake and eat it. Those classic tones at truly any volume would be sweet. It’s got me looking at the Vox AC15CH again as something a bit bigger than my BJ3 but still usable indoors. Plus I love a nice Vox. I will try the Twin out though to see if that’s as loud as a 1w tube amp on the lowest attenuator setting. I even found the 1/4w on my AC4TV to be loud enough to annoy people in the next room. Or I can just build a cab for the BJ... You nearly had me Fender!
My 1968 Twin has Jensen Stealth Neos. They make the twin weigh about 60 lb- very manageable. As for sound, The bottom is focused, not at all flabby, mids are crisp and the highs, while not having that JBL punch, have the sparkle and chime one would expect from a Twin, with a certain sweetness. I like 'em a bunch!
Thanks for your interesting and descriptive advice, @AlbertoMilanese...
In the meantime, I'm not completely surprised, I mus confess.
When the Tonemasters were issued, I though "ah, yes : they finally made the tour-de-force to create a solid-state amp able to sound as convincingly as a tube amp, and it's much lighter". Why not, after all ?
Very interested, I was ready to try to find one for testing purposes, and then I read that it was a modelling amp so I was somewhat disappointed like "another one, OK"... Moreover for the questionably high price they were offered (think a Champion 100, a Mustang II), they'd have to be flawless !
My experience with a Mustang II was disastrous, and with a Champion 100 it was "not-bad-not-good" - except for the weight, indeed ! but for tone and reliability...
I will nonetheless test a Tonemaster when possible, but I'm less eager now, reading you, and considering what I have at home as a reference of comparison :
Amen to all of this.
I owned three modern modeling devices including the Helix. In every case I've heard what the OP describes as "fizz" which is a good description. I think every modeler when it is pushed has a brittle, digital characteristic,
I really thought I would jump into the Tone Master. It sounded like a great concept: Use all the processing power and software to emulate a single amp with all of it's nuances then add an attenuator so you could let it rip in any setting.
I'll stick with my PRRI SE with 12" speaker for now. It's very clean and takes pedals very well.
At some point I will find the time to check out a Mesa California Tweed. That's about the most I would spend on an amp.
I keep wondering why Fender has not considered vintage modified versions of it's amp with the "modified" being a built in power-scaling feature.
I can't realistically see a modeler in my future.
Sounds good - I heard a lot of good things about these speakers - however, the lack of punch leaves me wondering if these speakers can live up to the 'real deal'.
I’m amazed people spend that money on a one trick modeling amp. Boggles my mind. Sorry it didn’t work out.
That is my experience with all modelers. And once you hear it, you can't unhear it. And then you notice that it is really always there to some degree. I had a particular over-hyped modeler long ago that sounded pretty ok at bedroom level (was a 212 amp), but as soon as the volume got up to shouting level it just became super nasty. So a friend who was heavy into all things vintage tube amps brought by some nice speakers for me to try and see if it would make a difference. It really didn't help. I mean, the 'clean and flat' speakers that were in the modeler didn't sound great with real amps either (we tried to break them in too), but speaker swapping didn't transform the amp at all, only giving different shades of trash.
On marketing of modelers, it bothers me that kids buy these things under the impression that they provide close-enough tones of real classic amps. A nice sounding amp provides alot of motivation to keep coming back for more = more playing and working with the quality sound and response of an amp, which is just a much better experience than what modelers can provide. It doesn't matter that a nice sounding real amp doesn't provide 50 different sounds and 100 builtin effects, because the sounds that it does provide are real and good and a good playing experience that keeps the ears and hands interested rather than continuously fiddling the knobs in search of something else that sounds better. I look at it like this: Nice sounding classic amps = a piece of gear that fosters good playing vibes and doesn't hinder expression, although probably not very versatile. Modeler = something much lesser, which isn't that same experience at all, and lots of it.
Sorry it didn't work out for you, but seems like you're just not in the target market in any case. You've got a soundproofed room at home, don't mind the weight, and don't have any need for direct recording. None of the advantages of these amps seem compelling for your situation.
I've had the Twin for almost 8 months, and not sure what you're really after here. Twin's are about subharmonic thump and headroom for days. The thump comes through a bit at the lowest setting around 5-6 on the dial, but that's a bit too loud for 2am with sleeping baby. If you want to try and overdrive the amp, then surely whatever pedal you've got will have a volume dial - bring that down and dime the amp until you've found what you're after. Personally I've got a Fairfield Modele B that effectively acts as a pre-preamp, and I use it as a signal limiter so that I can dial the amp volume to 6 to get the ~tube compression~ going and a touch of the thump, but it's perfectly acceptable volume.
But even better is just running the XLR out into an interface, disabling the speakers, and listening on headphones. v0v
Here's a sample of the Twin turned up to around 8 and hit with a Mustang with both pickups, no pedals. I don't hear any fizz other than the 6v6 distortion, which has always struck me as touch flat and crunchy compared to the harmonic complexity of an Orange preamp section being overdriven, which is why I have a Twin that sits at 6 on the volume dial and most of my dirt comes from pedals working alongside the amp overdrive.
These amps aren't for everybody, for sure. But if you've got young kids and limited space, they are flat out amazing, imho. A couple of weeks ago I had an idea while getting the kids ready for bed. Had a twenty minute window and quickly recorded this in three takes. I flipped a switch on the amp, opened Mixbus, grabbed a drum loop I'd been thinking about, and recorded. No mic setup, no fiddling, no hum or noise or attenuator shelving - just a fun little snippet that to my ears, sounds fantastic with zero post production, eq, compression, etc. Just a tiny bit of L/R pan on two of the tracks.
But like I said, to each their own.
Did you include that product description in your "Amp For Sale" ad?
I was one of you guys too until I played through one. I’m guessing most of you haven’t played through one, and some of you never will because your mind is already made up. And that’s fine. I took the more opened minded route, and the Tone Master is a great sounding music making tool for me. The TMs may not be the one and only amp for everyone. I will still own and play tube amps too as the need and situation dictates. I’ve owned some very nice boutique amps and to my ears the TM hangs right in there. In fact it’s getting a ton of play time.
It's the same pattern every time a new modeler comes out:
- The manufacturer says "this one is really the one that is better than tubes".
- They hand a bunch of amps out to Youtubers and such
- The Youtubers and such all agree, "Yes, this one really does sound as good as the tubes!", cause they like getting free stuff and a check to do a "review".
- Real people buy them
- Pretty soon real people start revealing it's still a con and they're not as good as the tube amps.
I haven't read a single reply in this thread... just want to address this!
You CANNOT compare the volume of a Deluxe to a Vibrolux!
Have you ever played a vintage, or even a re-issue Deluxe? They all FALL APART after 5 on the dial. (actually... anywhere between 3.5 and 6 depending on how the amp is setup). The don't stay clean beyond that... they just break up more and more to varying degrees. Some use it to their advantage, some buy a bigger amp for more headroom!
As for the FIZZ... I have nothing to say about that... could be a legitimate complaint...
You mean this kind of fizz?