The No.1 Website for Pro Audio
 Search This Thread  Search This Forum  Search Reviews  Search Gear Database  Search Guitars for sale  Search Gearslutz Go Advanced
Yamaha acquires Ampeg Effects Pedals, Units & Accessories
Old 2 weeks ago
  #1
GS Community Manager
 
Whitecat's Avatar
Yamaha acquires Ampeg

Old 2 weeks ago
  #2
Lives for gear
 
Mikhael's Avatar
 

I think Yamaha needed that; their amps have never sold that well. I don't know that they weren't well made, and sounded decent, or bad, or whatever, since I've never owned one.
Old 1 week ago
  #3
Lives for gear
 
lame pseudonym's Avatar
 

I'm afraid that they'll just put the historically important Ampeg name on any old poo. It's not reasonable to believe that they'll just leave Ampeg alone.
Old 1 week ago
  #4
Gear Addict
 

I think Yamaha has done right by Line 6, the Helix is nice and customer support seems to be really good.
Old 1 week ago
  #5
Quote:
Originally Posted by lame pseudonym View Post
I'm afraid that they'll just put the historically important Ampeg name on any old poo. It's not reasonable to believe that they'll just leave Ampeg alone.
Too late - Loud/Mackie already did that.

I do hope that they strip the line back down to the classics and avoid the urge to tamper. It would also be nice it they'd quit calling amps "SVT" that are not all tube.
Old 1 week ago
  #6
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikhael View Post
I think Yamaha needed that; their amps have never sold that well. I don't know that they weren't well made, and sounded decent, or bad, or whatever, since I've never owned one.
I've never OWNED a Yammie amp but I've worked in a number of music stores that sold them and been an authorized service tech. Yamaha historically has had a problem with making guitar amps that guitarists like. They just don't get it, from the very first when they made weird, thin, tall amps with bizarre trapezoidal speakers with Styrofoam cones they seem to have their amps designed by engineers with often revolutionary ideas who don't play guitar and don't have the foggiest idea of what guitar players like. They also have the unique distinction of creating a distortion circuit that's even worse than the one in the original JC-120. Their more recent amps have improved to the point of merely being mediocre, but still nothing desirable. I think stores only carry them as a condition to get their keyboards. Their engineers probably have too much Hi-Fi DNA to conceive of a real guitar amp.
Old 1 week ago
  #7
Gear Nut
 

I think the THR series portends well for the Ampeg deal.
Old 1 week ago
  #8
Quote:
Originally Posted by LPXRH View Post
I think the THR series portends well for the Ampeg deal.
What is the THR series? I could find nothing about anything by that name by googling "Ampeg THR". Nothing on the company website, nothing at Sweetwater either.

Edit: Oh, you mean those horrible, fizzy Yamaha modeling amps. That's precisely what I hope does NOT infect the Ampeg line. That would mean the end of Ampeg as we know it.

Ampeg is a manufacturer of premium bass equipment; any attempt to "modernize" or otherwise cheapen the line would be a major mistake.
Old 1 week ago
  #9
Quote:
Originally Posted by John Eppstein View Post
What is the THR series? I could find nothing about anything by that name by googling "Ampeg THR". Nothing on the company website, nothing at Sweetwater either.

Edit: Oh, you mean those horrible, fizzy Yamaha modeling amps. That's precisely what I hope does NOT infect the Ampeg line. That would mean the end of Ampeg as we know it.

Ampeg is a manufacturer of premium bass equipment; any attempt to "modernize" or otherwise cheapen the line would be a major mistake.

Most people like them a lot better than trying to play an Eppstein-approved "real amp" at living-room levels....

Personally, I think they did a good job of capturing a recorded guitar sound - especially through good headphones. But, the speakers aren't bad.



-tINY

Old 1 week ago
  #10
Quote:
Originally Posted by tINY View Post

Most people like them a lot better than trying to play an Eppstein-approved "real amp" at living-room levels....

Personally, I think they did a good job of capturing a recorded guitar sound - especially through good headphones. But, the speakers aren't bad.



-tINY

But they're not Ampegs. Not anymore than a 99 cent bag of chips is dinner.
Old 1 week ago
  #11
Quote:
Originally Posted by LesC View Post
I think Yamaha has done right by Line 6, the Helix is nice and customer support seems to be really good.
Which isn't surprising at all. The two companies share a slot of strengths and weaknesses.
Old 1 week ago
  #12
Quote:
Originally Posted by John Eppstein View Post
But they're not Ampegs. Not anymore than a 99 cent bag of chips is dinner.

True enough. But, where is the market these days?

Don't expect YAmpegs to tickle your nostalgia. But, I can see a line like the THR 100 going more the way of the Boss Katana. With an Ampeg badge, I think they'd sell - especially if they have a bass amp line.




-tINY

Old 1 week ago
  #13
Quote:
Originally Posted by tINY View Post

True enough. But, where is the market these days?

Don't expect YAmpegs to tickle your nostalgia. But, I can see a line like the THR 100 going more the way of the Boss Katana. With an Ampeg badge, I think they'd sell - especially if they have a bass amp line.




-tINY

pfui!
Old 1 week ago
  #14
Gear Maniac
 

Big corps can be schizo but in this case I hope they spend money to update and modernize the infrastructure as needed to allow Ampeg to build the amps they are capable of and otherwise keep their paws off.
Old 1 week ago
  #15
Lives for gear
 
Mylithra's Avatar
 

Well. Its got to be better than what SLM did with Ampeg. I had 2 small combos amps and both rattled and got sent back. I ended up with something else.
Old 1 week ago
  #16
Lives for gear
 
Mikhael's Avatar
 

Didn't Yamaha have a programmable amp a while back that had some high profile endorsers, like Ty Tabor and Allan Holdsworth? I remember it had motor-controlled knobs...

Anyway, Yamaha usually makes nothing bad. Some things are exceptional, almost all are useful. They're pretty diligent about that, so I'm hopeful they'll handle Ampeg decently.
Old 1 week ago
  #17
Gear Maniac
 
BasHermus's Avatar
 

Why do we all assume that Yamaha will try to turn Ampeg into themselves?

That is usually what American companies do when they buy another company, but not what Japanese companies do. They tend to buy a company that complements them and that is the way they want to keep it.

So I am mildly positive about Yamaha buying Ampeg. I think it is a solid company with a good track record of producing musical instruments that bought a well known company producing products that they do not. They will probably try to maximise their difference in strengths.
Old 1 week ago
  #18
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by John Eppstein View Post
I've never OWNED a Yammie amp but I've worked in a number of music stores that sold them and been an authorized service tech. Yamaha historically has had a problem with making guitar amps that guitarists like. They just don't get it, from the very first when they made weird, thin, tall amps with bizarre trapezoidal speakers with Styrofoam cones they seem to have their amps designed by engineers with often revolutionary ideas who don't play guitar and don't have the foggiest idea of what guitar players like. They also have the unique distinction of creating a distortion circuit that's even worse than the one in the original JC-120. Their more recent amps have improved to the point of merely being mediocre, but still nothing desirable. I think stores only carry them as a condition to get their keyboards. Their engineers probably have too much Hi-Fi DNA to conceive of a real guitar amp.
Think you nailed it there. Yamaha made decent portable PA gear for then prices too. Still do in fact. Their amps seemed to be good for anything but guitar. Far too sterile for may tastes but I do know players that loved them, for some reason I never understood.

I think Ampeg needed help ever since they nearly went bankrupt after they great success in the 70's reinventing themselves. The stuff they made after that period were cheap versions of the aluminum chassis amps. I see those blackface amps as being Ampeg's Silver Face era where they tried to cheapen up the designs and add stuff they really didn't work well.

They have done a decent job recently on some new reissues. They had to make some changes based on parts availability but the builds look good.
Their Class D designs in their Portaflex series weren't as popular as they could have been. I picked on up which I still have and having used it enough I can tell you right now that thing does not put out 350W. I realize allot of manufactures stretch the truth with their testing methods if not outright lie but I can run that amp side by side with other heads and it could only get to those wattages pushing mids or highs, not the bottom end.

Still its a great sounding head. As good as anything they've made before but that 350W model isn't quite enough for gigging. I'd need at least 500 or the 800W version just to match a live in-miced drummer. Maybe the matching cab makes a different.

Having researched those class D heads they have a major weakness which is heat. The amps have a built in fan that responds to a thermistor but apparently it isn't enough pushing all loads. When it overheats it kills the power till it cools down. Lots of complaints on line about that. I suppose some that safety measure isn't enough and they wind op blowing the circuit. There's allot of dead heads sold on EBay. Class D amps are very complex designs and not something your typical DIYer is going to be able to troubleshoot no less find the parts to repair it.

This is my other reason for wanting to upgrade. If you run a higher wattage head at lower volumes there's far less chance of overheating and it sounds better too.

Hopefully Yamaha's quality control can put an end to those kinds of problems. Maybe thay can get some decent combo guitar amps going too. I love their bass amps but their guitar amps were equally cool for tones. Kind of the missing link between Fender and Marshall for tone.
Old 1 week ago
  #19
Lives for gear
 
lame pseudonym's Avatar
 

Maybe that's something there. Maybe Yamaha can let Ampeg be Ampeg but help them with the modern ways of doing a solid state line. Ampeg has to be there.

It's tricky business but Yamaha could probably handle it, as long as they have the sense to stay out of where they don't belong.
.
Old 1 week ago
  #20
Lives for gear
 
lame pseudonym's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by wrgkmc View Post
Hopefully Yamaha's quality control can put an end to those kinds of problems. Maybe they can get some decent combo guitar amps going too. I love their bass amps but their guitar amps were equally cool for tones. Kind of the missing link between Fender and Marshall for tone.
Who "their"? Yamaha or Ampeg?
.
Old 1 week ago
  #21
Lives for gear
 
noah330's Avatar
I thought they were buying Gibson?
Old 1 week ago
  #22
Gear Maniac
 

That's just a fast road to hell
Old 1 week ago
  #23
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by lame pseudonym View Post
Who "their"? Yamaha or Ampeg?
.

I was saying Ampeg used to make allot of great combo guitar amps back in the day. As far as I know the only reissue I've seen in years is the 50W ReverbRocket which sell for around $500 used or the current Heritage R-12R which sells for $2200 new.

They have no amps in the range where most guitarists are likely to buy. Yamaha has the ability to mass produce gear and bring costs down while maintaining quality. I could easily see them mimicking what happened to Vox when it was purchased by Korg. They could take many of the older Ampeg designs and produce true to specs vintage reissues and a SS line that produces identical tones and sells for much less.

Ampeg did make some SS gear back in the day which was actually very Good. I have one of their 10W. 1X10" guitar amps from the 70's which was all transistor. It's pretty darn loud for a 10 watt amp and actually sounds like an Ampeg. I'd have no problem playing through it live miced up.

In the process of Yamaha reviving the Ampeg line they could learn allot about tone and improve their own line of amps. Yamaha spend decades trying to carve out their own unique sound - (whatever that is) - but like I said it only seemed to appeal to some people who actually bought the amps and used them.

They've done better with some of the toy modeling amps they've built but other then recording I really don't see those as gigging amps and the metal lunchbox look is a big fail. Makes them look like a rack unit or worse, and old Bogen amp head which were used for factory and business intercoms and produced low fidelity for music. Who ever advised them on using that art deco look probably killed off allot of profitability.
Old 1 week ago
  #24
Quote:
Originally Posted by wrgkmc View Post
They've done better with some of the toy modeling amps they've built but other then recording I really don't see those as gigging amps and the metal lunchbox look is a big fail. Makes them look like a rack unit or worse, and old Bogen amp head which were used for factory and business intercoms and produced low fidelity for music. Who ever advised them on using that art deco look probably killed off allot of profitability.

Well, those 5/10W THR amps were sold as an interface/practice amp. As such they are quite good. They'd do for a coffee shop gig....

I don't see the Art Deco that you do. But I actually like Art Deco.


And, those old bogen PA amps don't sound too different from a JTM-45 or a tweed deluxe when you drive them hard....



-tINY

Attached Thumbnails
Yamaha acquires Ampeg-nd-amp.jpg  
Old 6 days ago
  #25
Gear Addict
 
patshep's Avatar
I would love to see them reissue the old ampeg reverbrocket or jet with hand wiring, like the originals mmmmmmm
Old 5 days ago
  #26
Lives for gear
 
enorbet2's Avatar
Despite the fact that Ampeg did make some decent SS amps they were never known for that. Their claim to fame is all about tubes but part of what made that special and unique was their use of oddball tubes which is both a strength and a weakness but these days due to lack of availability so I think more of a weakness both marketing and soundwise.if they choose to substitute. That said Yamaha has always been good a appearances and marketing as well as judging the marketplace so it could get interesting. They probably would do best with a modernized ReverboRocket kept very simple as a great clean sound, moderate overdrive and a good pedal platform. As for the most obvious, the venerable SVT there will probably always be a niche market for those but weight and cost may make that a tough row to hoe for anything beyond limited editions..
Old 5 days ago
  #27
Lives for gear
 
noah330's Avatar
I remember the Yamaha that Mike Soldano partnered with them on back in the late 80s/early 90s. When I first started taking guitar lessons I didn't have a map. The store where I took them had a small Yamaha with colored knobs. I loved that thing and dreamed of owning it.

To my knowledge Yamaha doesn't make tube amps, aside from the Soldano thing. It would be great if they made Ampeg a premium product but sadly that probably won't happen.

Yamaha usually makes quality products to a price point but doesn't seem to ever make anything that excites the heck out of me. I know their higher end stuff (pianos, drums, guitars like the one Paul Simon plays, etc...)are supposed to be great, but I'm glad they got Ampeg instead of Gibson.
Old 5 days ago
  #28
Gear Addict
 
patshep's Avatar
I wish they had gotten Gibson, Gibson needs help.... Ampeg still makes great stuff, I felt like Yamaha could have helped Gibson in the quality control area a lot more
Old 4 days ago
  #29
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikhael View Post
Didn't Yamaha have a programmable amp a while back that had some high profile endorsers, like Ty Tabor and Allan Holdsworth? I remember it had motor-controlled knobs...

Anyway, Yamaha usually makes nothing bad. Some things are exceptional, almost all are useful. They're pretty diligent about that, so I'm hopeful they'll handle Ampeg decently.
The thing is, Yamaha has historically been unsuccessful with guitar amps. Those THR modeling amps are the first guitar amps they've done that have really been commercially successful, which isn't really saying much, if anything. I don't recall them EVER making a successful bass amp.

They've made some nice guitars, but the best they've done in amps have been "meh" and the worst were weirdly horrible.

A bit part of the problem appears to be that Yamaha does not understand tubes at all, not from a musical viewpoint or from an engineering viewpoint.
Old 4 days ago
  #30
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikhael View Post
Didn't Yamaha have a programmable amp a while back that had some high profile endorsers, like Ty Tabor and Allan Holdsworth? I remember it had motor-controlled knobs...
Did those people actually USE the amp or did they simply get paid for an endorsement and posing for a few photos?

Quote:
Anyway, Yamaha usually makes nothing bad. Some things are exceptional, almost all are useful. They're pretty diligent about that, so I'm hopeful they'll handle Ampeg decently.
Yamaha made some power amps that were not great. Too expensive, underpowered, and would not drive the lower impedances required for serious professional sound reinforcement without blowing up. I'm also not a fan of their mixing consoles for reasons too lengthy to go into.

Also, Yamaha has NEVER produced a tube amplification product that I've ever heard of. That makes me very wary of their ability to run a company whose primary expertise and base of their reputation has always been building tube amps.
Topic:
Post Reply

Welcome to the Gearslutz Pro Audio Community!

Registration benefits include:
  • The ability to reply to and create new discussions
  • Access to members-only giveaways & competitions
  • Interact with VIP industry experts in our guest Q&As
  • Access to members-only sub forum discussions
  • Access to members-only Chat Room
  • Get INSTANT ACCESS to the world's best private pro audio Classifieds for only USD $20/year
  • Promote your eBay auctions and Reverb.com listings for free
  • Remove this message!
You need an account to post a reply. Create a username and password below and an account will be created and your post entered.


 
 
Slide to join now Processing…
Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Forum Jump
Forum Jump