View Full Version : Another one for the guitarists, What Amp do you use?

08-19-2007, 11:21 AM
As many of you know I started playing the guitar at the beginning of the year. I have a Marshall MG Series 15CDR Amp (http://www.marshallamps.com/product.asp?productCode=MG15CDR). Its a decent little amp for a beginner but its not great. I get a lot of feedback and unless you have the knobs just right, it doesn't sound great. So I'm looking to get something new. I don't want to spend a ton of money but I do want a decent amp with a clean sound. So I was wondering what everyone else's experience has been. What amps do you have, have you used, like, don't like, ect...

Also, since I'm looking to clean up the sound, I'm wondering what else I can do. The cable I use is a fairly decent cable, although I've been eying a DiMarzio cable. I've heard they are pretty good and have a lifetime warranty.

I'm sure that the pickups have a lot to do with how clean the sound of your guitar is but I don't really know much about the build of guitars so I wouldn't even know where to start with new pickups or even if I need new pickups. My guitar is a decent guitar, not a cheap-o guitar. I have the Ibanez SA260FM (http://www.ibanez.com/eg/guitar.aspx?m=SA260FM&c=TLB).

Any help would be great and much appreciated.

08-19-2007, 11:06 PM
I have use a VOX Valvetronix 15W amp. It's a semi-tube, so it's a little different than a straight electronic amp. I like it, but I have found that custom settings and effects that are bulit into the amp are kind of useless, and if I were to get another, I would get a straight up tube amp, and just get pedals instead.

We have the 150W or 75W or whatever it is at school, and it is more or less the same, just more power (obviously).

I would say, if you're wanting to get a nice amp, go for a Tube amp, as the sound is more pure (IMO), and does not fizzle out at higher volumes. As for a cable, we use Monstercables in our band, and they work well, and have a lifetime warranty as well. They're expensive as hell, though. The ones we have also have an on/off switch on them.

08-20-2007, 08:14 AM
nice pick on the guitar :D i love ibanez

i've had a 30W rogue amp for the past 6 years. still works great. it's large enough use for a small setting, small enough to carry around (for those small settings where you won't have a system to plug into already), and not laden down with a bunch of extra effects. like leed, i've always found them pretty much useless for anything other than screwing around.

i've also got a 75W tube amp from the 70s or 80s. it was sitting in storage forever, but it still sounds amazing. if you're looking for a great sound, tube is the way to go, but it's expensive.

as for cables, i generally use fender gold-tipped cables. not too expensive, and they carry the signal pretty well. i also have one of those coiled cords, like a phone cord. i think they call them california cables or something. but it's really nice when i don't want to pull out the longer fender cables.

08-20-2007, 08:35 AM
i've got some first act amp a friend gave me and painted a bit, it sounds ok, not great, but decent. I have a Marshal MG CD-10 back in NC that I need my dad to ship, along with my guitar (i'm just using a friends cheap First act guitar, again, not great, but interesting)

08-20-2007, 08:47 AM
Vox amps are great. I would reccomend a tube amp but those get a little expensive.
Those are pretty nice.

08-20-2007, 11:53 AM
Thanks for the advise. I was actually checking out the Peavey ValveKing 112 (http://www.musiciansfriend.com/product/Peavey-ValveKing-112-Combo-Amp?sku=481442). I have a friend that works at a music store and can get me a deal on it. I'm also going to talk to my instructor because I know the amp he has in his studio sounds really nice. I think I'm definitely going to go with a tube amp though, eventhough they are more expensive.

08-20-2007, 12:18 PM
I have a Marshall Halfstack in my garage and dont even play guitar anymore, it is my brothers amp though, hard to beat a Marshall 2466 as far as sound goes.


Its pretty easy to beat as far as price goes though.

08-20-2007, 12:26 PM
Thanks for the advise. I was actually checking out the Peavey ValveKing 112 (http://www.musiciansfriend.com/product/Peavey-ValveKing-112-Combo-Amp?sku=481442). I have a friend that works at a music store and can get me a deal on it. I'm also going to talk to my instructor because I know the amp he has in his studio sounds really nice. I think I'm definitely going to go with a tube amp though, eventhough they are more expensive.
That amp is actaully great. The peaveys I played are awesome.

Are amazing as well.

08-20-2007, 01:22 PM
If you're going to buy a tube (which is deffinately the way to go), buy one with the distortion/overdrive you want. Throwing pedals on an amp will suck tone unless you go true bypass and imo, the distortion/overdrive you can get from the amp will always be the most pure sound you get. I have a friend with a Valveking, he plays metal/hardcore kinda stuff and the sound he gets from it fits his style of music. I wouldn't suggest it for everything though. I would suggest just going to a music shop and trying out a bunch of amps and picking the one with the tones you like best. Overdriven/distorted/clean, and a good reverb.
I could just be blowing a lot of hot air because I'm a drummer but I've played my share of shows in a band and am friends with with a guitar gear-freak who tells me about everything guitar and explains and proves everything he says. I also play every week at my youth group and was just in Indianapolis for a competition. I play a little bit of guitar myself but not anything special. The guitar rig I use isn't even mine and only costs about $500 tops but it's nice to mess with.

But really what I'm just trying to emphisize is take my advice and go to your store, try out as much as you can, and go from there. Sounds like paintball but I think with music it's even
more important.

As for pickups, I've been seeing a lot of guitarists buy $300 guitar with the specs they want and just changing the pickups. The pickups will change your sound A LOT. I don't know much about them but I really like Dimarzio evolution pickups that Steve Vai uses. They can create some mean sounds. Look and see what some of your favorite guitarists have in their guitars and go from there. Playing guitars with the pickups you are looking at is a good idea also.

Cables, my dad is a HUGE sound man and for speaker cables you can spend hundreds even thousands of dollars for a 5 foot cable just because it has "better sound." Will it maybe perform a fraction better then a $25 cable. Maybe, will you be able to tell the difference, NO. My advise to you is buy the $25 Dimarzio cables, if that's what your looking at but don't spend any more.
I'm pretty sure to "clean up the sound" you should be more looking along the lines of pickups, amp.

Sorry for the longness

08-20-2007, 01:23 PM
Matt why don't you send me your amp, I'll pay shipping :)

I'll probably get a list of amps that have good reviews and have been suggested together then go to the music store. At least that way when I go I won't be totally lost, I'll have an idea of what I want to look at.

Oh yeah, if it makes a difference I'm more into the blues, bluesy rock type music. Stuff like Stevie Ray Vaughan, Jimi Hendrix, Eric Clapton, ect....

08-20-2007, 05:43 PM
Eh if it were mine I would.

08-20-2007, 06:28 PM
I was just playin anyways, that is too expensive of a amp for someone to just give away.

08-21-2007, 05:15 PM
I have an old peavy backstage but it has a marshall speaker in it, my uncle got it for me for free

08-23-2007, 11:07 AM
Well, I've narrowed it down to 2. The Peavey Valveking 112 and the Fender Blues Deluxe Reissue. My instructor said that both have a great sound and for a blues lover, the Fender would be ideal. The Fender is $200 more than the Valveking though, so that might be a big deciding factor, especially since I'm getting this just to play around my house. I'm going to try to go to the music store tomorrow to try them out (hopefully they have them). I was there yesterday but I didn't have enough time to try any amps out. I'm going to see if they'll let me play the SRV Strat they have hanging on the wall too (Stevie Ray Vaughan is my favorite).

08-23-2007, 02:48 PM
stevie ray= ownage, i say peavey

08-24-2007, 07:27 PM
Peavey is out, Vox AC15CC1 is in. I read a bunch more on the amps and read a lot of reviews from people who just aren't happy with the Peavey ValveKing. I also went to the music store where a friend works and he said he didn't like Peavey amps. He said that over the years Peavey has reduced their quality standards and the past couple lines they have put out he hasn't liked at all. I really trust his opinion because he is a manager and he goes to all the big shows that everyone showcases their new stuff. He makes a lot of the decisions on what their store carries and what they don't.

Now for the Vox, I got to play one at his store. They sound is really nice, a lot better than what I have. It doesn't have a lot of distortion, but it has enough for me. It also has a tremolo effect switch on it which was pretty cool. So that is definitely an option now. I really want to play the Fender Blues Deluxe Reissue before I make my decision because I have read a lot of good things about it and my guitar instructor said it is really nice. I just have to find one. 2 music stores today and neither had one. There is a Guitar Center not too far from my house that I think I'm going to go check out tomorrow.