Recommendations?

Updated
MikeC
Hey guys, I may possibly be looking for a new amp soon. I'm starting to put a little bit of cash away whenever I can, this way I should have a descent amount in a few months or something. I don't know exactly what I'm looking for, wich is why I'm coming here, hoping for some advice. I play alot of metal, stuff that sounds like Five Finger Death Punch and Lamb Of God. I also find myself playing alot of stuff like Dying Fetus, As I Lay Dying, August Burns Red and Hatebreed lately, so I'm just looking for something that can give me a good metal tone. I know I didn't put the best bands to explain things either, but I did my best. Anyways, there aren't a whole lot of shops around here that carry nice high gain heads, so I don't have the opportunity to try out many things. My local shop has a Mesa, wich I beleive is a Dual Reflector Solo Head, and I gave it a shot just last week. That thing is brutal, and deffinatly a possibility. At the same time, we have a Hughes & Kettner Switchblade at that shop that I find myself playing alot. It's alright, but I haven't had the chance to crank it up and see how it sounds, so I can't judge it to well. Here's my whole problem, I'm looking for something around the $1200 range, and I know there's alot of stuff that can get quite pricey. I'm just tired of having the head I have now and putting all my money towards gear to get a good tone when I know I could just be pocketing that money and getting an amp that can sound brutal without using much. Any help would be appreciated guys.
MikeC

Well, supposably the Dual Reflector here is new, and it's marked at $1200 exactly. I'm pretty cool with all the guys that own the place too, and that's just what the price tag says, so it's not like I'm getting any type of deal for that price.
I forgot to mention I had my eye on a 6505+ as well, but I haven't had the chance to try one. I can probably try one sometime next week, cause the only shop that has them is a little far and I'll have to wait a bit to go there. The randall I heard mixed reveiws alot. Some people say it's a brutal amp, and others say it's okay, but the price tag is outrageous for what you get.
I'm just stating opinions on what I've read, I have no experience with them and I probably can't find a shop to try one because nobody around here carrys Randall.

MikeC

Will do, I'll try seeing if any shops within an hour or so from my house have them and I'll go from there. Right now I'm playing through a Peavey Ultra Plus, wich I beleived they stopped making before they designed the 5150, supposably it sounds very 5150ish, but I haven't played a 5150 so I can't tell. Like I said though, I'll see if I can contact any Randall dealers close by and see what I can do from there.

Just out of curiousity, how much do new Dual Reflectors ussually go for?
And does anyone know of any amps that I might be interested in that weren't listed so far?

MikeC

Maybe that's what this amp needs, retubing, or possibly a better cab.
I got the Ultra about five months ago or so, and I haven't changed the tubes in it. When I baught it I was told that the tubes were replaced to months before I got it, but it was played on only a few times. I accually just got an MXR 10 band EQ as well, just hooked it up the other day, but can't find any descent settings as of right now. The reason I might not be able to find something I like might be because it needs to be retubed though, so now I'm stuck on what to do.

I can either:

A) Get new tubes and see how it works, but if I still don't like it then I just retubed it for nothing.

B) Possibly try hooking the head up to another cab, maybe a friends, just to see how it sounds. The cab looks pretty beat up, so I honestly don't know how old it is or anything. I could always post pictures and see if others can give me some advice, or post sound clips, but I have nothing to record it with.

C) Just keep putting money away for a new head and sell this amp to somebody who's looking for something with that sound.

I'm stuck on what to do now, damn.
Any advice on what to do would be great, I could sure as hell use it right now.

MikeAmottV2006

I have a brand new in box V2 coming to me straight from randall. It is a warranty replacement head and I'm not even gong to play it..just unpack it for pictures to sell. I have a buddy of mine that is a Mesa guru..as in the only non-proffessional musician I have personally hear that can dial in a mesa rectifier tone that I like....and he has pursueded me to get a dual or triple rectifier. $950 + shipping buys a brand new in box Randall V2.

MikeC

So, are you saying the Randall's better and the MESA is really hard to dial in correctly?

avi8r2005

That price on the Dual Rec is not bad, but I'd be leary as that is not how much they are brand new. Mesa sets the prices for new items and that is quite a bit lower than new, the pro net price, which is the price Mesa sets on it is $1699. So it may very well be used. If Mesa new that the shop was selling their product for less than MSRP, they may not be a dealer anymore, if they are in fact a dealer. But back to the point. The rectifier series are pretty decent sounding amps, but be prepared to do some tweaking with them to get the sound you are after. For the most part they are plug and play, but will require some time spent with them to EQ them to what you want. An overdrive pedal in front really makes them shine too. The XXX is a good sounding amp as well, in fact I condidered buying one when I was getting my Rectifier. I just dug the sound on the rec better though, although it's only 2 channels whereas the XXX is 3 channels. If you want 3 channels, the Dual rec or XXX is the way to go. Hope that helps.

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MikeC

I was just saying what I was told by the shop owners about the Mesa, and they're telling me it's new. I had no idea what they ussually went for, wich is another reason I braught them into this subject. I played it, and it was nice, but I didn't get the chance to crank it up alot to get that tube tone, so I can't judge it to much.

I've had the chance to try the XXX a few months ago in North Carolina, I had tried an Eclipse for the first time on one. It was a great sounding amp from what I remember, and didn't have to do to much tweaking to get something descent sounding. I played it through the XXX cab I suppose, and that seamed like a descent cab as well.

The JSX I heard good things about, but never had the chance to play one. From what I know, they're good if you're looking for something with effects or something, correct? I see them around here every once and a while, but I never took the time to plug one in and give it a shot.

These are all great options guys, and I'll be comparing them shortly. There are a descent number of amps I can be looking at for this price, but I don't know exactly what is good for what I'm looking for. I appreciate all the opinions, and if anybody else has anything to say, then feel free. I want to get a good idea of what I should be looking at before I accually go look at them.

MikeAmottV2006

I, personaly, find Rectifiers very hard to dial in. But my friend has already done all the leg work, as far as tweaking, tube changes and what-not and he makes them sound damn good. He's had his rectifier for about 4 or 5 years and he just recently settled on what tubes he likes in it and how he sets his tone controls.

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Robotsatemygrandma

Honestly, I'd get a cabinet you like. Try out cabs loaded with Celestion G12T75's and Vintage 30's as these are the most common speakers used in general, and for metal. Just go to shops with your favorite guitar and your head and try out different cabs. This way you aren't judging your decision based on different equipment.

If you can't dial in a tone with a new cabinet, then I'd try different tube sets. JJ's, Ruby, Groove Tubes, Tung Sols, Electro Harmonix, etc. Start with your power tubes first, because these are going to be the main flavor of your tone. Pre Amp tubes will then give you the little differences. Then experiment putting different 12AX7's in the gain stages.

Also, lol... you might want to try out different pickups too. Sad to say but every little change such as tubes, pickups, and speakers has a profound effect on the tone you're getting.

MikeAmottV2006

Hmmmm....Thats funny you say that. My 5150II and my buddy's Mesa Triple Rec and Marshall Slash both had minimal tone changes with power tubes and drastic changes with pre-amp tubes.

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AnubisUnbound

Haha, Maybe a little more than 10 minutes... It does take a lot of tweaking, and reading the manual, lol.

MikeC

Wow, alot more responses then what I had expected.
Tell me, how much does a Mark IV go for new, and used?

AnubisUnbound

Wow, alot more responses then what I had expected.
Tell me, how much does a Mark IV go for new, and used?

Brand new I think its about 1700?

Used, well depending on the condition, maybe between 900-1400? I would check out ebay. They come in all sorts of combinations, Short heads, long heads, 1x12 combos, and a variety of finishes.

MikeC

If I had more cash right now, I'd sell my amp to put towards a new head, but unfortunatly if I sold it now I wouldn't have an amp to play on. The only other amp I have is an old 15 watt Peavey, but the sound cuts out every couple minutes while playing.
I'm going to call shops around here to see if any of them have a Mark IV for me to try out. Also, I'm going to do my best to get to a Sam Ash or something to try out a 6505+ and a XXX because they're the only places that carry them in my location.
I also just messaged the owner of my local shop, wich is where I ussually go, to find out about that Dual Rectifier, just to be safe. If he tells me what I was told by another employ there, then I'll probably make a day out of it this weekend to go try new amps.

Please, if there are any other amps that you guys think would be good for what I'm looking, this way I can do my best to try them as well. Like I said before, any help would be greatly appreciated.

MikeC

That's the same head you're thinking of. They only made the lit up logo for a year I beleive, and it's the same one I have. I never heard a solid state sound the way this head does though, I can deffinatly tell it's a tube by hearing it.
Accually, I turned it on today and it seamed like it had more balls to it. Had a good tone for some reason. I got a rack and when I put the EQ on I hit something, so I went to plug it in to try an set it back, and the way it was sounded good.
Also, I think I'll be trying out some heads tomorow, but I'm not sure.

MikeC

Anyone have any experience with 'Genz Benz'?

DeathrollJM

Anyone have any experience with 'Genz Benz'?

i do

their cabs are killer. I have the G-Flex 212 Cab and it kills even high end 412 cabs. Their amps are okay overall, i think for less than an El Diablo, the 6505+ sounds better. For even cheaper than that the Spider Valve even better, but thats just my opinion.

MikeC

Got to try out a Double Rec and a H&K Switchblade today.
I think something may have been wrong with the Double Rec, cause it sounded horrible. The H&K completely raped that amp.

fastfretjazz

If you don't mind buying Chinese made head and cab..try the Peavey valveking Vk100.I dont care much for what other people say but i tried it i liked it, i have a valveking 112 as i didnt have the money for a valveking head and cab at the time,either did i have the room.

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