Solid State amp you've known and loved,,, or hated,

mexicanyella

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Maybe post some audio examples???

https://alonetone.com/benniven/tracks/bleach-bald-snow-tires

Not the first time I’ve posted this link on the forum, but a good recorded example of me having fun with my Peavey Audition 20. I was playing a early 60s Melody Maker with a single reverse-slanted Strat pickup at the bridge, in drop-D tuning. The guitar fed a DOD FX10 Bi-Fet Preamp as a solo booster, into a DOD FX82 bass compressor, into the amp. You can hear things get hairier and more compressed when I step on the FX10 at the solo.

The other guitar you can hear a little of is a Martin D-15 with a Fishman pickup into an old square-cabinet Peavey Ecoustic 112, cranked to the edge of breakup and distant miked. Those two guitars and “rigs” worked pretty well for our kind of lo-fi, “are they playing through a police bullhorn” approach.
 

pippoman

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Quilter Micropro Mach 2 8" -- sounds much bigger than its size suggests!!
If every guitarist could only play through one. I’m hanging on to my vintage Fender tube amps, but my Quilter MicroPro goes to all the gigs, whenever we have the occasional outside gigs of course.
 

JRapp

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Actually, Gibson (Norlin) manufactured the LAB Series amps in both SS and Tube. B.B. King and Clapton played the tube versions, not the SS. However, Ray Flacke, Nashville Session play and also lead guitarist in Ricky Skaggs' band back in the 80's played his Tele through a LAB Series L7 with a 15" speaker. I happened to have one and got rid of it (I still kick myself). It was heavier than hell, so it may as well have had tubes. The magnet on that 15" EV speaker probably weighed 25 or 30 lbs., but man it was a tone monster. The cool thing about the LAB amps was the limiter/compression settings. If you dialed that in with the onboard spring reverb, it could sing just like a tube amp!

Got a pic or reference for a Lab Series 'tube amp'? As far as I know, no such thing. BTW---BB's was SS. I checked it out when we opened for him.
 
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pippoman

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I have a JC-55, a Polytone Brute II, and a Quilter Aviator. They're all good, but the Quilter is in a completely different league than almost every SS and hybrid amp I've used. I've had a couple of music man hybrids, a standel SS, and a jc120...and a couple of crate and peavey amps as a kid. Quilter is my personal preference. I will eventually get rid of all my amps except for a couple of my fave combos, the Quilter, and a few choice cabs, and just use a Helix modeler for most things. I mean, what's NOT nice about only having to schlep a guitar or two along with what essentially equates to a pedal board for all your shows/gigs and jam sessions!?!
I agree. A friend of mine got a modeler and uses a Quilter block for everything.
 

padreraven

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My first amp back in the '60s was a solid-state one I built from a kit by Heathkit, a 100 watt combo. I wish I still had it. I now have one tube amp and four ss amps, a Marshall 100 HFX half-stack, a Marshall Marshall MG15DFX, an Acoustic A40 and a Fender Rumble 100 bass amp. They are all quite different and I'm fond of all of them.
 

gregulator450

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I am putting up a +1 for the Vox PF15R. I can't say enough good about this amp; I just need to find a 1x12 or a 2x12 to pump it into. I also had a Marshall MG series, one of the little guys, that sounded surprisingly good for what it is. I would have mic'd it for a gig any day.

EDIT: forgot to add, a friend of mine has both the Yamaha THR10 and the THR100HD. These are simply fantastic amps that work well plugged straight in or as a pedal platform.
 
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Spudly

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I love my Crate Power Block - it's the Timex watch of SS amps. Takes a licking and keeps on ticking.
It's not a high gain amp, but has a satisfying gain structure. It works well with whatever you put in front of it.
crate-powerblock-34658.jpg
 

Allen Peterson

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Most steel players like amps that don't break up. As a steel player I've played a number of Peavey solid state amps. My favorite was the Nashville 400. When it got too heavy, I moved to the Nashville 112. 80 watts, one 12" speaker and pretty light. It's got a great EQ and plenty of volume for small venues.

I also play steel through a 200 watt GK MB200 solid state bass amp half the time. The amp is about 2 pounds. I play it through a home-built cab that weighs less than 20 pounds. It's got a 12" Peavey Blue Marvel speaker. The sound is every bit as good as the Peavey and about half the weight.
Cab.JPG
 

SomeGuyNamedRob

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Way to repurpose that thing and make it work. I have a Dean Markley K-20 chassis (MDF cabinet was falling apart) that makes a pretty decent bass preamp or low-volume bass head. I should build a head shell for it like you did.



I have had an Audition 20 since new and have gotten a ton of use out of it. But it took me awhile to find the tones I liked. I don’t care for its “saturation” tone, but if you put a compressor in front of it and set it for loud/clean/mids forward it can really sound good in a mix for a cutting rhythm tone. Step on a clean boost in front of it and it gets some interesting hair on it for solos. Doesn’t sound like a tube amp, but it’s a useful sound. The compression helps.


I think the only compression that would have helped mine would have been compressing it in a trash compactor.
 

Chiogtr4x

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I am putting up a +1 for the Vox PF15R. I can't say enough good about this amp; I just need to find a 1x12 or a 2x12 to pump it into. I also had a Marshall MG series, one of the little guys, that sounded surprisingly good for what it is. I would have mic'd it for a gig any day.
I LOVE my Vox Pathfinder 15R- it is just a great sounding combo amp ( I goose mine with an always ON Blues Driver which practically doubles amp volume- don't use the amp boost)
I'm leaving mine alone as far as the 8" speaker, as I just dig the light weight and portability.

BUT I actually have a spare/empty Cambridge 15 cab ( same cab as PF) and am hoping a buddy of mine can cut out baffle to put in a Celestion 10" speaker. so I can have a matching Vox cab when needed.
Gave him everything yesterday
 

Henry Mars

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Over the years I have owned several solid state amps.
2 Kustom 200's back in the day ... they sounded ok. Their main allure was that they were roadie proof.
One of them was dropped down a basement elevator at the Gaslight in NYC ... kept on ticking.
I owned a 100W Gibson SS amp ... it sounded ok but was not made very well.
I owned a Peavey Standard ... durable but sounded meh
I owned a Peavey BackStage 30 ... good dressing room warm up amp.
I owned a Peavey Musician Bass Amp with all kinds of EQ built in. It sounded decent and saw years of service.
I own a Peavey Special 130 purchased new and I still have that used to see a lot of use. Versatile, sounds good and still gets occasional use.
I own a Mark Bass amp. Great amp but I don't play much bass these days.
If hybrid counts for this discussion I still have and occasionally use my Peavey Deuce

The reliability of current production tubes will eventually drive me back to Solid State. The truth of it is that I am playing mostly Jazz and some R&B these days at lower db levels than my younger days so solid state is an option.
My best sounding SS guitar amp is the Special 130. I haven't used Kustom 200 Amps for 48 years but they did sound decent for the time.
I love my tube amps ... I have a lot of them but tube amps will eventually go the way of the old Muntz TV.
 

znanjeiimanje

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Loved my Fender RocPro 1000 and still use it next to my all tube amps. It has a particular charm in the sound that I like. Nevertheless, the build quality of the thing is horrible. I can't even begin to explain how many times I had to open it up for loose components.
 

alathIN

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I had one of these way back in the late 70s - my first amp.
This was just after the Tuck and Roll era; first generation solid state amps. They were designed to be inexpensive, so a success from that standpoint.
I remember it as having a uniquely lifeless tone, a complete and utter lack of color and personality.
The cleans were probably serviceable-ish.
Getting saturated/distorted quickly became harsh and unpleasant.

My next amp was a Peavey Deuce, from the era where they were solid state preamp and tube power amp, with a decent phaser and reverb. At the time it sounded glorious in comparison to the Kustom Lead 1.


7f0fff2d1128a6418e6664b9d392a2cf.jpg
 

Chicago Matt

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The first really good solid state amp that comes to mind is the Roland JC-120. I think Albert King used an Acoustic 150.

I loved my old JC-120 that I owned in the late 70s and early 80s. It was great for clean guitar, but where it really shined for me was with my Fender Rhodes 73 piano - instant Billy Joel sounds from that era.
 

mexicanyella

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Lots of Jazz Chorus love in this thread. Unrelated to the thread, I stumbled on this YouTube clip tonight and was digging the live mix, and the bass tone/bassline, when I looked closer and yep! José Feliciano is playing through a miked JC120 and sounding pretty good!
 

BlackCatBonz

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Had one of these for a while, got me through some Fender-less pinches. Definitely a jazzer's amp, no Fendery twang at all. Found a sweet spot on the gain channel using the single-band parametric e.q.

View attachment 775725

I had the 212 version in the late 80's early 90s. I played in a rock/metal band and the gain channel had a great AC/DC crunch... I ran a BOSS CS-2 compressor in front of it and it almost sounded like a high gain amp. I moved up to a 5150 and sold it... and I regret it to this day. The clean channel was crystal clear, great reverb, loop with adjustable out/in. It would make a great pedal platform if you wanted a crystal clear clean with lots of headroom.
 

Craig Williams

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I live in Thailand and after playing tube amps for 40 years finally decided to give it up. Power is too noisey and dirty here and tired of the constant hums and buzzing.

Ordered a new style Peavey Bandit 112 Transtube today. Be an interesting transition. Mind you I have heard guys playing some of the newer Fender SS amps last 10 years and they sound beautiful

Nothing will ever replace a Fender twin reverb in full flight though
 

rangercaster

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I know it's heresy, but I just love the clean sound of a Crate amp with just a little onboard chorus and reverb dialed in ...
They don't do gain or distortion well ....
 




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