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Discussion in 'Amp Central Station' started by Kmaxbrady, Sep 20, 2019.
Please do find that. I'd absolutely love to read it.
Ah, gotcha. I kinda misunderstood the original post. Totally agree with you then. It's fair to say that for some people (myself included) the weirdness and variation in tube amps is half the fun - kinda like rebuilding classic cars, you sometimes find some with weird parts and strange designs, but that's what makes you love them. Granted, that's not to say that's in any way inherently better than standardization of SS technology, and certainly not from a pragmatic standpoint.
I sometimes wonder if half the fun of tube amps is the messing about with them. Trying different tubes, changing capacitors, lowering the B+ etc, etc. Also tube amp technology is reasonably easy to understand. Can this 'disconnect' be responsible for the antithapy towards modelling amps? Just a thought.
I kind of think of them like the next step in a lot of the SS stuff Kustom was rolling out way back in the day. Obviously this thing is digital, but it's the same core idea of being a good amp that sounds and behaves as much like a "real" amp as possible but with all the upswings of not having to goof around with tubes. I'd be interested in more things like this simply because one of the big points for me with modeling amps/modules/floor units/whatever is how awful it is to fool about with them. When it comes to amps I just want to plug in and turn some knobs. The simplicity of the process is half the beauty of it.
Plus, I don't need all those different doobobbers and jiggydoos to fool with. I have my handful of sounds I like to use and that's really about all I need from an amp. Methinks too many people obsessed with ultra-modelers spend way too much time trying to sound like everyone but themselves.
That's an interesting thought. I recall a lot of negative sentiment when automakers first started putting computer chips in cars. All the shade-tree mechanics were up in arms because they couldn't be easily repaired in the back yard. But they also got better gas mileage, polluted less, produced more power with less displacement, and were safer and more reliable. Now, no manufacturer would dream of making cars without computer chips in them.
Indeed. That reminds me of when I used to frequent a forum for US motorcycles just as HD started to put fuel injection in their bikes.
The digital vs tubes arguments are strangely reminiscent of the fuel injection vs carburettor ones.
Well; ok sure; but you are omitting one BIG caveat:
Chips in cars/bikes improved - measurably & almost immediately - every KPI there is ; related to performance.
For electric guitar; here we are some 25 years after digital modelling started; & it is barely there in terms of sound (save for the most expensive & unpractical equipment - basically a computer) - the only MAJOR argument for them being practicality (here in OP's case)
Somebody should say this: please stop treating digital modeling as the new kid on the block; or this new & promising futuristic technology. Folks; it's decades-old... OK it's practical we get it (maybe); alright somewhere down the road we'll run out of tubes blablabla - but it just couldn't match a tube amp tone (which it's trying to emulate, to begin with)
Why wouldn’t Fender put a ton of other amp sims in there?
Three possible reasons:
1. It feels more authentic to have something that looks, sounds and operates like a DR or a TR. That’s the marketing angle and they’re trying to woo a purist crowd. Adding extra amps changes that angle
2. Their pricing is directly measured against the tube version. They aren’t asking “what would you pay for several modelled tube amps?”. They’re asking “What would you pay for a lighter, attenuated, more reliable but modelled DR or TR?”
3. The 3 or 4 amps in one is coming, I would think. It’s just a different proposition. It would need a different design to create the best experience and it would likely cost more as, once again, they are pricing it against the tube versions. And really, that becomes a different user experience. The angle here is to offer the same experience. That’s a different product design and a different proposition.
The question is whether Fender’s angle of creating the same amp/experience with a different type of amplification tech in it will capture enough buyers. I’m pretty resolved to buy one. For those of us who normally play at low volume and occasionally get to play out it’s a good compromise.
I think you're right. We 'buy in' to the tube amp thing so we can get into the market for tubes/rolling our own sound, amateur tech-ing with our voltages, easy modding with PTP wiring, etc.
It's not necessary, but we love doing it. Like having a classic car in the garage to tinker with on a Sunday...
I also wonder if a lot of this discussion is centred on getting a particular sound. SS amps are more appropriate (better?) for some things - like a full, undistorted tone as a base for FX - check the guitarists using SS amps like Wilko Johnson, Andy Summers, Zappa, Steve Albini, The Mighty Fripp, etc.
I did use the caveat 'strangely reminiscent' - not direct mapping (pun intended ) for my fuel injection analogy. Also, fuel injection was used in the late 1930s (Me109 engine had FI compared to the Spitfire's carbs) but even in the 1970s-80s it was awful in cars. The US isn't big on diesel engined cars but we over here (of a certain age) remember the abomination of the FI diesel Vauxhall Cavalier and the clouds of black smoke that followed it around. FI has improved so much since then. Same with amps... with the obvious caveat that analogies are only that; analogies.
I understand - & your analogy is a good one. I have no argument with you - at all. But it just drew my attention to logical fallacy in the debate as a whole (like the endless tube vs digital thing)
By the way; I do play & enjoy a Mustang at gigs - believe it or not (among others).
People concerned with the loss of "warmth" and "organic feel" of a tube amp don't have a clue when it comes to these amps. I have 13 amplifiers, 6 of which are tube/valve based. I love them and use them more than any of my others (not really a fair statement as only two of the non-tube amps aren't small practice slash busking amps), I am, in fact, a tube snob. This, however, is a completely different kettle of fish. If I did not know what it was, there is no way I could differentiate it from a high end tube amp.
I felt the same way until I played it in person. Don’t get me wrong, the TM sounded GREAT. But while ABing then the tube amp just sounded better every time I went back to it. And maybe there’s some subconscious bias at work but, I was honestly blown away by the YouTube demos, and I tried it out really wanting it to be as good. I’ll be trying it again for sure next time I’m there. I want to be proven wrong.
The main reason they don't include multiple models....to keep from cannabalizing SCX2 and Mustang sales. Plus, when they come out with other models, they make more money.
I suspect it has to do with bit depth and sampling rate, which are like the audio equivalent of resolution in images. I have no idea what bit depth or sampling rate the TM amps use, but I suspect they're very high; that's what makes these amps sound so much "truer" than the average modeler. Dealing with that much data in real time takes a lot of computing power.
For those of you disgruntled because the new amps don't include a hundred amp models and 1,000 effects.
That's literally what every other modeling amp ever made does. All of them. I hear these are still available almost everywhere.
Sometimes you just need a Bowie, not a Swiss Army.
I am one of the people that got a Katana and said 'why don't they give me one regular-style amp with a solid clean sound that I can then use with my own pedals, and not have to plug it into a computer to really dial it in?'
So these amps are giving me what I asked for. Finally had a chance to try out a Deluxe TM today. They had the twin too. Before I plugged in, my (trusted) salesman said 'they both sound like a deluxe. The twin sounds like a deluxe too, it's just bigger.'
I noticed on the cardboard thing on top that touts the amp features, Fender put something like "Only 23 lbs--pick me up!" so they are highlighting the light weight. And yes, very nice and light.
It sounds great. Not quite as 'lively' or articulate as a tube amp, a little compressed, but still very good. Trem and Verb sounded great.
At $499, I would have walked out with it. At $899...it's more than I have in my budget, or than I am willing to budget to replace a tube amp that I already own (DRRI). If I got a bonus at work or tax refund, I might go for one with the standard 15% discount.
I can see myself grabbing one after they begin to appear in the used market.