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Finally getting a tube amp

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(@kryogenik)
Active Member
Joined: 12 years ago
Posts: 9
Topic starter  

I've had solid state amps for the 5 years I've played guitar and I'm thinking about getting a tube amp. I'm looking for a combo amp that's under $1000 (or a little over), all tube, doesn't need to be at hearing loss-inducing levels to sound good, has plenty of gain (not metal levels, but like hard rock), but still has a good clean sound.

After browsing musician's friend for a while, I found the Fender Supersonic 22 amp, it has good reviews and looks like it fits my needs really well. I want to try it out before I spend almost $1000 on it, though. So I went down to guitar center to try one, but they didn't have it, or any other supersonic. From what I understand, the supersonic is a good, but somewhat obscure amp compared to other fender amps (after all, fender amps aren't really known for high gain), so I doubt I could find it in a small music store.

Does anyone know when guitar center gets new shipments? Does it have a regular pattern? Does anyone know any other big music stores in Rhode Island (that's where I am at the moment) that might have the supersonic 22? Also, does anyone know another good combo amp that fits my criteria that might be better than the supersonic 22? Thanks in advance.


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(@ezraplaysezra)
Reputable Member
Joined: 10 years ago
Posts: 487
 

Yowzer! There are so many good tube combos for under a grand it's nuts. Basically everything not boutique - and everything boutique is based on something that ain't, in case you didn't know.
Go try the Fender Bassman, The Fender Twin, The Deluxe, The Vox AC30, a Mesa Mark V, a Solidano Atomic 16, the Marshall Haze, and the Marshall Vintage Modern 2466. Depending on which one you like most, I's have 30 new suggestions.
But I'm sure the Super Sonics are good little amps, albeit a bit pricey.


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(@gavster)
New Member
Joined: 10 years ago
Posts: 4
 

What kind of music do you play and what kind of tone do you need? If the fender does it for you, go for it, you won't regret it and have fun


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(@caliban4)
Eminent Member
Joined: 10 years ago
Posts: 27
 

Save the money and get a good 15W tube amp. That will be plenty enough and more than loud by the time you crank it up to even halfway. Don't believe me? Try it in your usual place where you play and just turn it up halfway. Been there, done that. Most people make the mistake of buying a big amp thinking big is good and then they can't crank it up when they get one.

This will also give you a bigger option to get a top of the line 15W for your budget. Personally, I like the fender blues junior or the egnater tweaker. I also prefer a head and speaker cab rather than a combo because it provides more versatility to add an additional cab or exchange it out with another one. You can get a good 15W or 20W head and cab or a 15W head and 2 cabs even.

Guitar Center always has used amps in stock too but their used prices I find are not very competitive.


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(@ezraplaysezra)
Reputable Member
Joined: 10 years ago
Posts: 487
 

The supersonic 22 is a 22 watt amp. You wont be able tell the difference between 15 and a 22 watts.


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(@anonymous)
Illustrious Member
Joined: 15 years ago
Posts: 8306
 

i have a peavey classic that i like, but you'll have to swap out the speaker to get a good sound, or just get a head with a different cabinet. i have a cannabis rex speaker in mine, and it's really smooth and warm with good breakup, but i've heard celestion greenbacks or patriots are also good. total price should be under 400. if i were getting a fender, i'd find one with good clean sounds(twin, reverb, etc) and get a pedal for distortion. there aren't many amps that get great cleans AND dirt. you'll probably have to sacrifice a little on one channel or the other if you're looking for the amp to do it all.


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(@derek-wilkerson)
Estimable Member
Joined: 12 years ago
Posts: 110
 

i have a peavey classic that i like, but you'll have to swap out the speaker to get a good sound, or just get a head with a different cabinet. i have a cannabis rex speaker in mine, and it's really smooth and warm with good breakup, but i've heard celestion greenbacks or patriots are also good. total price should be under 400. if i were getting a fender, i'd find one with good clean sounds(twin, reverb, etc) and get a pedal for distortion. there aren't many amps that get great cleans AND dirt. you'll probably have to sacrifice a little on one channel or the other if you're looking for the amp to do it all.
minus the old randall MTS series. in which you could piece together your sounds

bassist for the crux
Randall RB-125-115 120 watt 15" eminence spk.
Randall RBA 500
2X Acoustic B115's
Peavey T-40
Indiana P-bass


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(@corbind)
Noble Member
Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 1744
 

As with anything in life -- there is always a trade off. When you used solid state amps they were consistent in volume. You could turn the volume up (or down) and there would not be some big spike in volume.

With a tube amp you'll find they need to play a bit louder to make it (subjectively) sound better. There can also be spikes in volume as you turn it up (or down) slightly. Like if the volume on a tube amp is currently at 1.25 and you turn it to only 1.5 and the volume just increased a LOT with that tiny turn.

Nevertheless, for those who have decent ears, a tube amp will sound better. Again, better at a cost but I'm biased toward tube amps when sound quality matters.

"Nothing...can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts."


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(@askaguitarpro)
Eminent Member
Joined: 10 years ago
Posts: 38
 

I agree on the Peavy Classic 30. You might also check out a Hughes and Kettner 25th Anniversary Combo. Both have solid clean and lead channels.

Jake

AKA "AskAGuitarPro"
http://www.askaguitarpro.com
http://www.youtube.com/user/AskAGuitarPro?feature=mhee
[email protected]


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(@amakely)
Active Member
Joined: 9 years ago
Posts: 6
 

I agree on the Peavy Classic 30. You might also check out a Hughes and Kettner 25th Anniversary Combo. Both have solid clean and lead channels.

Man, I LOVE my Peavey Classic 30. Great clean tone, and a really gritty dirty channel with enough volume for ANY gig. Plug that thing into a 4x12 cab and it'll blow you down.

Andy Makely, Atlanta blues guitarist, and co-founder of
Take It From The Top: http://www.tifttop.com
The best place to learn about the best guitar players.


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(@doremifa)
Trusted Member
Joined: 9 years ago
Posts: 91
 

My dad has a small 70's Peavey (I think Peavey) amp, it's brown leather with tan cloth. Small little thing, maybe in the 10w or 20w range... Man does it ever sound nice! Makes me want to see if he'd give it to me lol... Next purchase will be a nice small tube amp. Currently have a solid state Fender Frontman 212 (100w) it's too loud for the stage I'm at right now.

+1 for the fender blues junior suggestion. Tried one at a store, real nice sound.

Download a bunch of cheat sheets and posters: http://stevesmusiclist.com/


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(@lesstrat)
Active Member
Joined: 9 years ago
Posts: 5
 

I've always played tubed amps. They just have that warm tone you just don't get with a solid state. I purchased a Orange Dual terror a few years ago and I love it!! Been through Fenders, Marshalls, Hiwatts, Boogie, and Peavey and my Orange is a great little amp!! by far my favorite..


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(@doremifa)
Trusted Member
Joined: 9 years ago
Posts: 91
 

I've always played tubed amps. They just have that warm tone you just don't get with a solid state. I purchased a Orange Dual terror a few years ago and I love it!! Been through Fenders, Marshalls, Hiwatts, Boogie, and Peavey and my Orange is a great little amp!! by far my favorite..

Good to know, I was looking at a little Orange Terror the other day...

Download a bunch of cheat sheets and posters: http://stevesmusiclist.com/


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(@doremifa)
Trusted Member
Joined: 9 years ago
Posts: 91
 

I'll have to try an Orange... LesStrat is convincing me... I was looking to buy a Fender Hot Rod Deville 410 or 212...

Download a bunch of cheat sheets and posters: http://stevesmusiclist.com/


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 Crow
(@crow)
Honorable Member
Joined: 13 years ago
Posts: 554
 

Little, ancient, 5-watt fake Champs are absolutely killer. There are tons of them out there by all kinds of companies. Nothing to 'em -- three tubes, one knob and a crappy speaker which is easily replaced. They're easy to service, should it come to that, but it probably won't, unless you want to put a three-prong power cord on it, which is a good idea. My National Studio 10? (Champ architecture, although it breaks up quicker than a vintage Fender.) You will pry it from my cold, dead fingers.

"You can't write a chord ugly enough to say what you want to say sometimes, so you have to rely on a giraffe filled with whipped cream." - Frank Zappa


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