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Marshall tube vs. solid state

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by punkmar77, May 28, 2010.

  1. punkmar77

    punkmar77Experienced Member Staff Member Uploader Admin Team Experienced member


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    Getting ready to have to buy a Marshall half stack with money I've scraped together, anybody have any input on Solid State vs Tube or any other advice I can use to make a decision?
     

  2. Ivanovich

    IvanovichExperienced Member Experienced member Forum Member


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    Used both over the years, right now got AVT 100. Sound is very good, can get any sound you want, really, but breaks up if you crank it up. It's great for home use and recording, but not really got power for gigs, though lineout through PA works alright.
     
  3. wafflecakes219

    wafflecakes219Active Member Forum Member


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    tube always! better gain, cuts through better, nice volume for shows
     
  4. Cocytus

    CocytusExperienced Member Experienced member Forum Member


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    All you need to know.

    Marshall JCM800 100w reverb.
    Marshall 1960B cabinet.

    Tube is way more reliable, granted you know how to treat them and get them serviced once a year, they end up being more money in the long run, but will not drop dead like a shitty solid state.

    Now, granted I have a solid state AMPEG SVT-350T 2x12 combo, with a SVTHLF 4x10 cab that is my main show playing rig, due to the sheer ammount of violence and power it unleashes when I play my SG through it, But I recently scored a Marshall solid state head for 20$ from this dude I know, and it doesnt sound half bad for fucking around in my apartment. Its the older HDFX100 before they started making them with the fauly fans and mis-soldered joints.

    Personally though, search your local craigs list for a Killer 100W tube head and a cab.

    Youll thank yourself later, the lows are tighter, more headroom for distortion, youll actually be able to hear yourself over the drums and bassist(always an awsome feeling when they tell you to turn down! haha)

    Good reliable tube heads I have used
    80s Marshall JCM800 2203/2204
    Marshall JCM900(very, very gainy sounding, but lacks the boot in the face of an 800)
    JCM2000
    TSL2000

    Peavey 5150

    late 60s fender bandmaster Reverbs

    Ampeg v4


    Mesa dual/tripple rectifier(sound great with vintage gibsons)

    The real cream of the crop though, and what I reccomend to anyone who wants a reliable amp....

    Matamp legacy 120

    or, anything from www.electricamp.com
    be prepared to spend, but the sound...youll masturbate as soon as you turn the thing on.
     
  5. punkmar77

    punkmar77Experienced Member Staff Member Uploader Admin Team Experienced member


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    Thanks, I was considering going state because tubes are such a pain to maintain and can really get pricey, and I have had some friends try to convince me to go state but you guys are right about the sound that I already know and love....Cocytus your gig rig sounds very intriguing I used to have that Ampeg bottom 4x10 with 1x15 cab but I never tried playing a six string through it. I lost it along with 2 JCM 900 fullstacks and about another $20,000 in gear in a fire in 2003, every single peice I had collected for 25 years was gone in one day. So its taken a while to even want to replace anything.....nice score on that $20 Marshall :thumbsup: and thanks for the link
     
  6. New Face In Hell

    New Face In HellExperienced Member Experienced member Forum Member


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    I always thought tube amps had a more rounded off sound.
     
  7. nodz

    nodzExperienced Member Experienced member Forum Member


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    Very easy to push the tube amp to distortion by amplifying in non-linear phase of tube. Whether clean, crunch or heavily distorted the sound always sounds mellower than the solid state devices. Solid state devices are better if you do a lot of travelling with the amps, less easy to damage and lighter, but having said that, if you look after tube devices, they will be ok. Always have replacement tubes available. Nothing worse than turning up to a gig and the tube fails (although having said that tubes generally need to be re-biased, especially the finals tubes, when being replaced or you need to have a matched pair or quad of devices dependent on the configuration of the amp) and no two tubes will ever sound the same. Cost may be an issue, tubes nearly always somewhere between two to five times more expensive than equivalent solid state device.
     
  8. nodz

    nodzExperienced Member Experienced member Forum Member


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    Btw ever thought of making your own amp?

    Goto http://www.ax84.com/

    These are basic 10-20W amps but all the theory holds true for amps with greater power output. I am currently collecting the parts for my own four tube push pull amplifier with about 12W out. Its for a practice amp. It uses 2 x 12AX7 in the preamp and 2 x 12AQ5 in the power amp.

    I am also collecting the parts for two other amps. One will be a 4 x 6BM8 in the final output stage. The triode section of each tube will be used for 2 input channels (2 triodes per channel). This will give a mini practice amp of about 3W per channel, plenty loud enough and compact enough for my bedroom :D
     
  9. Ivanovich

    IvanovichExperienced Member Experienced member Forum Member


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    Never really considered it, I guess convinced they can make something better quality than I can. AVT is valve pre amp, solid state power amp, cheaper compromise that works fine as long as you don't push latter too much. Very reliable though, six years, hauled it around a lot, gigged it, knocked drink on it, dropped it few times, and no problems.
     
  10. nodz

    nodzExperienced Member Experienced member Forum Member


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    Yeah tube preamp and solid state amp can be a good compromise. You get the sound of the tube in the preamp and the ruggedness of the solid state in the finals and lets face it, the finals are the expensive tubes. 12AX7 or 12AU7 that are normally used in the preamps are a dime a dozen so to speak. I can get brand new ones for less than AUD$10. I built a preamp that runs from a 40V power supply. I built the power supply too. You don't need the massive transformers to deliver to the tubes. I can't remember what the principle it works on is called (why you only need 40V and not 200V that is). It's sounds really mellow and supplies about 0.5W to my solid state 10W amp.
     
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