Best amp for playing Death Metal "Live"?
Old 11th March 2007
  #1
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Thread Starter
Best amp for playing Death Metal "Live"?

I am been home recording now for a bit over a year and I have been using my V-Amp Pro. I am now looking to play some live gigs and start jamming and was wondering if I could get some advice as to what amp would be the best for playing Death Metal live? Anthing from $1000 and under.

Could I use my V-Amp Pro live? I have a Marshall MG Series 250DFX that I use to practice with in my apartment. Could I run the V-Amp Pro through the Marshall MG Series 250DFX for live and practice with a band?

Any info would be great!!!


Peter
Old 11th March 2007
  #2
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Ouch. Your best bet at that price range is probably a used 5150/6505. Certainly a step up, and plenty of touring bands use them. If you can go a little higher, you might check out ENGL amps (www.rocksolidamps.com has clips of a variety of models), another death metal staple. You might even try a VHT Deliverance with a boost in front.
Old 11th March 2007
  #3
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Thread Starter
Quote:
Originally Posted by DeathMonkey View Post
Ouch. Your best bet at that price range is probably a used 5150/6505. Certainly a step up, and plenty of touring bands use them. If you can go a little higher, you might check out ENGL amps (www.rocksolidamps.com has clips of a variety of models), another death metal staple. You might even try a VHT Deliverance with a boost in front.
So you think for $1000 and under I am not going to get something really good enough huh? I am not looking for the loudest amp in the world, jsut a killer death metal sound for live shows and practice. Not recording.

Thanks for the respoce.

Peter
Old 11th March 2007
  #4
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nerogtr's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bloodsoaked View Post
So you think for $1000 and under I am not going to get something really good enough huh? I am not looking for the loudest amp in the world, jsut a killer death metal sound for live shows and practice. Not recording.

Thanks for the respoce.

Peter
you're not really paying for volume when you get above $1000, you're paying for tone. +1 on the used 5150 for the price.
Old 11th March 2007
  #5
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Add another +1 for the 5150/6505. Engl and VHT and other companies make better, but it's not in your range.

You could get by with something else, but you asked for advice on what the "best amp for playing death metal live" was and then kind of poo-pooed the advice you got. You could be one of those dudes who think that he can have the best tone with some bastard amalgamation of components in a rack case, or who swears by whatever is grim, and you can have shitty tone and make it work.

-or-

you could invest $600 in an amp that you probably won't ever feel bad about having around. People use that amp all the time and it sounds killer, especially for the price. It's a little noisy but you're playing grind riffs. Get a gate. Don't be "that" guy.

Good luck.
Old 11th March 2007
  #6
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also might be able to find a single rectifier used for about that. never had an issue with them, some ways really cool, lower wattage and the tubes break up faster than what the dual and triple rectifiers do. but the next problem is a head/ cabinet or a combo. $1000 is scraping quite close. also a tube screamer or something similar on the front end is helpful. i recently got a mesa boogie road king combo and must say the best money i have EVER spent on an amp, and i have owned a few good ones. nice amp can make a crappy guitar sound good and a nice guitar sound amazing!

you also never state what guitars your using?? slight mods and upgrades here can make worlds of difference. i am so sick of seeing kids run around with these low end jacksons and bc riches thinking they are satans gift to metal. the tone is so horrible you cant stand to listen, gets in the way of what could be a decent metal tune, when even some simple pickup changes could change most everything.

my opinion the marshall you have is nothing more than for practice or teaching on. i would never try to gig with it and could not imagine it holding up volume wise with full band volume. you want tone, not the cheap chainsaw tone lots of guys get cause they wont spend a few bucks. good luck
Old 11th March 2007
  #7
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Ampeg vh or ss-140 head and a Randall 4x12. Loud, crunchy, clear, reliable and affordable. Oh, and it can definately do death metal.
Old 11th March 2007
  #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by guitardom View Post
i am so sick of seeing kids run around with these low end jacksons and bc riches thinking they are satans gift to metal. the tone is so horrible you cant stand to listen, gets in the way of what could be a decent metal tune, when even some simple pickup changes could change most everything.
very true. a good amp doesn't mean shit if you're plugging in a bad sounding guitar. everything in the signal chain needs to be up to par.
Old 11th March 2007
  #9
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for DEATH metal, like seriously Tampa-style/nordic stuff... find some solid state thing - pretty sure those guys all run solid state amps.. it's too hard to make a tube sound that harsh and bad.

maybe a used Randall Warhead?
Old 11th March 2007
  #10
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Harvey Gerst's Avatar
I answered this over in Home Recording.

Death Metal? Look for a Randall RG 100 HT Guitar Amplifier.
Old 11th March 2007
  #11
Old 11th March 2007
  #12
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Old 11th March 2007
  #13
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picksail's Avatar
 

Chuck Schuldiner swore by that Marshall hybrid guitar head. I forget the model...
Old 11th March 2007
  #14
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Oroz's Avatar
 

Many metal bands are using KrankAmps (http://www.krankamps.com) nowadays. It seems to be the new trend. But I think that a 2 x 12 combo is going to cost you more than $1,000. Worth checking them out.
Old 11th March 2007
  #15
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IMO, a tube amp is all about mid character and harmonics. "death metal" tones usually require cutting the mids entirely. Why by an expensive tube amp if you're just gonna eq out what it does best? Go with a SS. The randall worked for dimebag. Someone mentioned the warhead...I believe that is what he used.

Another route would be to get an amp with a good clean sound and just use a stomp pedal such as the boss metal zone.

You should be able to get a good live rig that does clean and death crunch for under $500. Get a head/speaker combo with a closed back (2x12) cabinet, as an open back will be too loose in the low end.
Old 11th March 2007
  #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sizzleboy View Post
IMO, a tube amp is all about mid character and harmonics. "death metal" tones usually require cutting the mids entirely. Why by an expensive tube amp if you're just gonna eq out what it does best? Go with a SS. The randall worked for dimebag. Someone mentioned the warhead...I believe that is what he used.

Another route would be to get an amp with a good clean sound and just use a stomp pedal such as the boss metal zone.

You should be able to get a good live rig that does clean and death crunch for under $500. Get a head/speaker combo with a closed back (2x12) cabinet, as an open back will be too loose in the low end.
Cutting the mids entirely? This is not true. I know the guys who were knee deep in the tampa/orlando death metal scene and they never set an amp like this. The mids are very important to the clarity of the amp. usually the lows were under 5 and the mids about the same or a couple clicks higher. It's all about have a nice clean tone so you can articulate your notes.

The 5150 is an ideal amp for death metal, and you can't go wrong there.
Old 11th March 2007
  #17
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theres only ONE amp for DEATHMETAL in my book!
i'm a dealer so let me get that out of the way, so theres no confusion. but let me say that i became a dealer, because i think they are superb amps. Not the other way around.

::::drummm rooOLLLLL::::::

The one and only MADISON DIVINITY

www.madisonamps.com

or just hit me up with a pm or email if anyone has questions.

Durv
Old 11th March 2007
  #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Methlab View Post
Cutting the mids entirely? This is not true. I know the guys who were knee deep in the tampa/orlando death metal scene and they never set an amp like this. The mids are very important to the clarity of the amp. usually the lows were under 5 and the mids about the same or a couple clicks higher. It's all about have a nice clean tone so you can articulate your notes.
I think we all know and are in agreement of that.

But 9 out of 10 metal guitarists who come into my studio have their mids at 0-1 and their bass and treble at 8-10. (I know, I know, I must record a lot of crappy musicians, huh? )
Old 11th March 2007
  #19
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+1 for the Boss Metal Zone. I don't do death metal but the Boss pedal with a Mesa Nomad or Marshall sounded rather deathly.
Old 11th March 2007
  #20
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its not uncommon to hear death metal bands with the mids scooped....but it doesn't mean it sounds good. dfegad its a common mistake, and in my opinion a lot of power and clarity is in the midrange and its a shame to cut it out. also dfegad on the boss metal zone.
Old 11th March 2007
  #21
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Quote:
Chuck Schuldiner swore by that Marshall hybrid guitar head. I forget the model...
He played Marshall valvestate. I think he used a 2x12 combo genz benz amp for awhile miced up backstage.
Old 11th March 2007
  #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nerogtr View Post
its not uncommon to hear death metal bands with the mids scooped....but it doesn't mean it sounds good. dfegad its a common mistake, and in my opinion a lot of power and clarity is in the midrange and its a shame to cut it out. also dfegad on the boss metal zone.
I agree with every word you say and although I've been playing death metal for about 20 years now, I'm not doing the scooped mids or distortion pedals anymore for a long time. My live rig is very basic (Marshall JMP-1 into Mesa .50 caliber power amp) and I'm the only guitarist in the band, but in combination with the bass and drums we have a huge but very clear sound. We've toured with most of the well known death metal bands over the years and got lots of compliments on our live sound from them, although they usually credit it to our soundman.
Old 11th March 2007
  #23
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for me it would be between the 5150 or an engl fireball with a maxon od808 in the front. the engls have a tighter bottom end, but the 5150 has a thicker mid that will help cut through live imho. ive used engls and 5150s for recording alot, and in all cases, the 5150 came out on top.
Old 11th March 2007
  #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by el cochino View Post
I agree with every word you say and although I've been playing death metal for about 20 years now, I'm not doing the scooped mids or distortion pedals anymore for a long time. My live rig is very basic (Marshall JMP-1 into Mesa .50 caliber power amp) and I'm the only guitarist in the band, but in combination with the bass and drums we have a huge but very clear sound. We've toured with most of the well known death metal bands over the years and got lots of compliments on our live sound from them, although they usually credit it to our soundman.
what many people dont realize is that while the scooped sound might seem "cool" in the bedroom, when you're playing with a band you need the midrange to cut through. otherwise, your lows are masked by the bass, and the highs are overtaken by the cymbals and you are left with nearly nothing.
Old 11th March 2007
  #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nerogtr View Post
its not uncommon to hear death metal bands with the mids scooped....but it doesn't mean it sounds good. dfegad its a common mistake, and in my opinion a lot of power and clarity is in the midrange and its a shame to cut it out.
How is it a common mistake if this has been a part of it's defining sound since it's inception? Sounds like a common esthetic to me, and if it is an esthetic that you do not like how exactly do you plan on helping the poster achieve this sound by reccomending anything but?
Old 11th March 2007
  #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nerogtr View Post
what many people dont realize is that while the scooped sound might seem "cool" in the bedroom, when you're playing with a band you need the midrange to cut through. otherwise, your lows are masked by the bass, and the highs are overtaken by the cymbals and you are left with nearly nothing.
This is very true. I used to scoop the mids on my metalzone back in the day trying to emulate recordings of heavy bands...in live situations, I always had to crank my amp to ridiculous levels to even hear myself...took me a while to figure out what the problem was.....

....I have a suggestion that will likely be shot down by purists here....but if you're going for a cheap solution, go direct. Obviously, it requires that you're playing gigs with a decent PA and monitor system, but it has a lot of advantages. It sure gets tiring after a while lugging a 4x12 and head to gigs.... all you need is a decent analog pedal (Rocktron Zombie, Metal Muff, Zoom Trimetal if you can find it are good choices...metalzone is thin, fizzy garbage) and a cabinet emulator....that's your entire rig...and, again, as long as the pa is good, 99.9999% of people in the audience will think it sounds dope...this is further gearslut blasphemy, but the Behringer DI/Guitar cab emulator actually sounds pretty good.....all analog circuitry and only $30!

You won't look as tough as do using a half stack...but your back will sure thank you if you gig a lot....
Old 11th March 2007
  #27
hm 1k$ is a bit on the short side..

but our Laboga kicks ass..

laboga mr. Hector is a bit more then 1k$ and you dont have a box then.

you can check them out in the US. total diffrent beast than peavey or crappy mesa.

cheers
Old 12th March 2007
  #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Methlab View Post
Cutting the mids entirely? This is not true. I know the guys who were knee deep in the tampa/orlando death metal scene and they never set an amp like this. The mids are very important to the clarity of the amp. usually the lows were under 5 and the mids about the same or a couple clicks higher. It's all about have a nice clean tone so you can articulate your notes.

The 5150 is an ideal amp for death metal, and you can't go wrong there.

Hmmm...I guess I'm just going by what I have heard as an audience member. Lot's of bass...no mids...scratchy highs...inarticulate grunting....

But seriously, I really liked Dimebag's tone....Even today, I think it holds up. That was a solid state Warhead...but I guess it was also Darrel's hands...
Old 12th March 2007
  #29
Gear nut
 

I completely disagree on the solid state thing. Even the warhead. Dimebag's tone, in my opinion, was in his fingers. On top of that, the only reason a warhead would even satiate him was because he could play four (or more) at a time. I have yet to hear a solid state amp at *band/live* volume settings that could hang with a decent tube rig that was built for metal, especially in this price range. I would stand whole-heartedly behind the 5150 argument- they deliver so much saturation, and, paired with a decent cab, can play at live volumes without turning to mush. If price were no option, i'd def. argue for an orange rocker/engl/krank/old mesa, or anything of this caliber. Just going to be one to say that the warhead/randall SS tone did not make dimebag sound as good as he did - his fingers did. Stick with the 5150. They're built like tanks and the eq/gain voicing is built for full on saturated metal.
Old 12th March 2007
  #30
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everybody's x's Avatar
 

another vote for the 5150
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